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Old 07-24-06, 05:58 PM
genec's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
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Bikes: custom built, sannino, beachbike, giant trance x2

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Originally Posted by Cosmoline
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.

Are people simply ignorant?
Touring bikes? Sheesh... look at the bikes offered by major lines and "touring" may show up as a bike or two, period.

Are people ignorant... or is it marketeers?

I have a custom "utility bike" that was build for me in 1984. A few years ago I was looking for a replacement. No shop had anything even close. They were all either MTB or hard core light road bikes. When I suggested something in between, I was pointed to the "hybrids" which looked like they wouldn't do anything well. In retrospect, the "hybrids" might be as close as America gets to utility.

Looking at the commuter forum, it seems that many there build up their own "hybrids" or utility bikes from other frames and set up the bikes to meet their commuting needs... some with fat tires to cover trails and a bit of off road, others with narrow tires for strict road and long distance commutes.

Perhaps the distances within our cities make a general "utility" bike as a target a bit harder to hit compared to the smaller size of European cities and the utility bikes there.
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