View Single Post
Old 05-19-07, 11:54 AM
Prefers Cicero
cooker's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 12,808

Bikes: 1984 Trek 520; 2007 Bike Friday NWT; misc others

Mentioned: 75 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3505 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
That bike is a good choice for a new commuter. It has fenders which are very important if you get caught in rain. Like most mountain bikes, yours has three cogwheels, or chainrings, adjacent to your pedals ("a triple crankset") and probably 7-9 at the rear wheel ("the cassette") giving you 20+ gear choices, adequate for all wind and hill conditions. The wide, flat handlebar means you can ride with your hands always on the brakes and steer with great confidence in traffic; but it's not as comfortable on really long rides as the narrower, bighorn shaped "drop bars" seen on road bikes. That's because you can get tired or numb hands from them always being stuck in one position on flat bars. So the flat bar is fine for commuting. Mountain bike tires, even when slick, are a little slower than the skinnier tires on most road bikes, but you'll have far fewer flat tires - maybe none at all.

If you do start commuting regularily, you should look into getting a rear rack. If you're lucky the bike will have eyelets for mounting a rack on the upper part of the rear "dropouts" (the plate-like part of the rear frame that the rear axle and rear chain derailleur bolt to), and on the seat stays (the twin posts the rear brake is attached to), but even if the eyelets aren't there racks and fasteners are available for any bike. It's easier to commute with your stuff on the bike, not on your body. You can lash your backpack to the rack, or stash it in various types of packs, cases or baskets that attach to the rack. The only kind of rack that might not work is the kind that just clamps to your seat post. If you compare your bike to the kid's one I posted, you'll see your bike frame has a horizontal top tube, not a sloping one, so your seat post doesn't protrude much, and a seatpost-mounted rack might be too snug under your seat. squinting I can see you have eyelets on your rear dropouts for mounting a rear rack.

Last edited by cooker; 05-19-07 at 11:59 AM.
cooker is offline