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Old 07-24-06, 05:15 PM
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Cosmoline
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Why No Love For Utility Bikes?

A recent thread in the commuting forum got me wondering--why is there so little love and attention paid in the US to the humble old utility bicycle? The interest seems to be on touring bikes, racing bikes, mountain bikes, and a myriad of other special purpose bicycles. But the bike that does it all is regarded as an antique. This is especially odd given that of all the world's bikes, at least 90% or more are utility bicycles. The European nations seem to be way ahead of us on this, and have developed some truly fantastic utility designs. But stateside it's tough to even find a bike with fenders! And any suggestion of riding a bike with a heavy steel frame is scoffed at.

I wouldn't mind so much if I could actually buy the European utility bikes, but I've been trying for over a year now to no avail. There's one outfit that imports old Dutch bikes from time to time but it's a long way from here. My efforts to get a group buy for old Finnish military bikes fell apart over extremely high shipping costs.

Are people simply ignorant? Or is this a matter of Americans wanting the ultra high tech xtreme solution to problems that don't really exist?
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