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Recommendations for a commuter bike w/ disc brakes?

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Recommendations for a commuter bike w/ disc brakes?

Old 05-22-15, 04:41 PM
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mrwheezy117
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Recommendations for a commuter bike w/ disc brakes?

I currently ride a Specialized Secteur but unfortunately it can't handle disc brakes, which I hear are pretty handy for Seattle's hilly and rainy riding conditions. Furthermore, the frame doesn't handle fenders or panniers very well.

As much as I loved riding this bike for the past four years, I think it's time to give it to a family member or at least pick a new commuter that can help me do groceries and a 3-5 mile commute. I know that great bikes are pretty expensive and since I don't have a car, I'm willing to spend under $2000 for a road/touring bike that's durable, comfortable, light (within reason since I know most steel frame bikes can't beat an aluminium road bike), and can handle disc brakes.

I've considered the All City Space Horse but it doesn't allow for disc brakes. There's also Soma Double Cross Disc... Any other recommendations?
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Old 05-22-15, 05:13 PM
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DiabloScott
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Salsa Colossol
Trek Crossrip
All City Macho Man
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Old 05-22-15, 05:14 PM
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I think your Secteur would do OK, but if you want something with discs I'd recommend a Kona Jake the Snake. As a bonus you'd be ready to jump into the Seattle cyclocross scene. Keeping with the 80's pro wrestling theme, you could also consider an All City Macho Man.

There was a disc version of the Secteur for a while. I guess they stopped making it.

For a 3-5 mile commute and grocery duty I'd probably get an inexpensive hybrid/mountain bike and keep the Secteur for weekend outings.
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Old 05-22-15, 05:41 PM
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Specialized Diverge is another, fyi.

Surprised to hear the Sectuer doesn't handle a rack very well, or fenders, I thought it had a ton of clearance...
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Old 05-22-15, 05:43 PM
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HardyWeinberg
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cannondale synapse, the aluminum ones have eyelets for fenders and rack
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Old 05-22-15, 07:08 PM
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Being mainly familiar with Treks, my recommendations all fall under the one brand (in no particular order): CrossRip, 7.4 FX Disc, 720 Disc, 520 Disc, Lync
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Old 05-22-15, 08:58 PM
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Thanks all for the suggestions!

I'm pretty much narrowed it down to Trek CrossRip Elite/LTD, All City Macho Man, and Soma Double Cross Disc. What finer details should I look for in these bikes to differentiate them? I'm not sure if there is anyone that would have ridden all three bikes to give me a difference between the two.
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Old 05-22-15, 08:59 PM
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Salsa Vaya!
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Old 05-22-15, 09:10 PM
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The Motobecane Fantom Cross Comp from Bikesdirect is one heck of a bike. Titanium frame, 105 group and bb7 disc brakes for $1400. Save Up to 60% Off Titanium Cyclocross Bicycles | Road Bikes - Motobecane Fantom Cross Team Titanium | Cross Bikes

I have basically the same bike but with the SRAM Rival group. Makes one sweet commuter for these PNW winters.
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Old 05-23-15, 06:43 AM
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Specialized Secteur Disc.
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Old 05-23-15, 06:44 AM
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This is on sale at REI.


Awesome deal, IMHO.

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Old 05-23-15, 06:57 AM
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Your the one that needs to ride them. Those are all very capable bikes. I love my Crossrip LTD but, the one that feels good to you is the one you should go with.
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Old 05-23-15, 08:16 AM
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Given, most brands want a piece of that action. still ... picking the Local Dealer is a First choice.

have a favorite LBS?
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Old 05-23-15, 09:09 AM
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I have the Trek CrossRip...although highly upgraded....it's a very nice ride though.

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Old 05-23-15, 11:04 AM
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mrwheezy117
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Yeah I don't know anywhere that I could test ride all those bikes. But since I'm moving out of state to Seattle, I might as well pick a new LBS and see what they end up recommending me.

Or I suppose I could save myself the cash and stick with my Secteur for a bit longer to see if those hills and rain really warrant a new bike w/ disc brakes.
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Old 05-23-15, 01:47 PM
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Given your riding description I'd go with an internal gear hub and either roller or coaster brakes (or roller front, coaster rear). External gears, brakes, and chain are more maintenance and make riding in normal clothes more difficult. Most of these bikes (above) aren't designed for carrying stuff so can also be a bit squirrelly when loaded down compared to city bikes.

With your budget and particularly with this as your primary xport my first choice would be a Workcycles Secret Service or Workcycles Opa (I prefer the Opa but the SS is lighter). Second would be something from Batavus, Azor, Gazelle, Vanmoof, Velorbis, or similar. Third would perhaps be something from Bobbin, Pilen, Achielle, Paschley, or Linus.

More: Bikes | LocalMile

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Old 05-23-15, 05:43 PM
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I would never buy a bike with mechanical disk brakes. They are the "freewheel" of disc brakes -- still manufactured but obsolete and inferior in every respect.
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Old 05-24-15, 09:47 AM
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I like My Hydraulic Rim Brakes But they are just on 1 bike. New Trek 720 is selling with the TRP Hy Rd cable actuated Hydraulic calipers..

People seem to like the TRP double banger Cable brakes Spyre/Spyke





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Old 05-24-15, 12:12 PM
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You mention groceries and a 3-5 mile commute. That commute is very short, and groceries implies the bike gets locked up outside. Why not use something like an old rigid fork mtb with kool stops, fenders and a rack for utility duty, and ger a nicer bike for the rest of your riding where you have secure storage at both ends?
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Old 05-24-15, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
Given your riding description I'd go with an internal gear hub and either roller or coaster brakes (or roller front, coaster rear).
The problem with IGH's and hills is that many don't have the range for them. I've commuted on 3,7,8,and 9spd hubs,and none had enough range to where I could comfortably go up and down my hills on a daily basis. Roller brakes suck in hilly areas. I ride our bikeshare bikes all the time,and I've had two close calls where the brakes didn't,and almost went over the handlebars once when the front locked. Hard use trashes the grease and makes them either ineffective or grabby. Also not a fan of coasters on hills in the rain;they cannot be modulated as well as a proper hand brake. The only time I had the rear step out on me has been with my old Swobo Otis;fortunately,it had a disc on the front.
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Old 05-25-15, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by dynaryder View Post
The problem with IGH's and hills is that many don't have the range for them. I've commuted on 3,7,8,and 9spd hubs,and none had enough range to where I could comfortably go up and down my hills on a daily basis. Roller brakes suck in hilly areas. I ride our bikeshare bikes all the time,and I've had two close calls where the brakes didn't,and almost went over the handlebars once when the front locked. Hard use trashes the grease and makes them either ineffective or grabby. Also not a fan of coasters on hills in the rain;they cannot be modulated as well as a proper hand brake. The only time I had the rear step out on me has been with my old Swobo Otis;fortunately,it had a disc on the front.
Not sure what hills the OP has. I ride up a fair number of relatively steep hills with either an 8 speed Nexus or N360, both do just fine.

Keep in mind that bikeshare bikes don't use disk brakes because that'd likely keep 70% of their fleet unridable at any time. That's not good reliability. Bikeshare bikes must withstand a very considerable amount of abuse and the brakes they have actually hold up quite well. Disk brakes are great for stopping power but they also must be consistently maintained. Roller and coaster brakes have sufficient stopping power, are consistent in all weather, and are nearly maintenance-free. I agree with you about moderating coaster brakes though. It takes some practice but once you get use to it they work well. Even so a roller brake in front is a good idea IMO.

Each technology and type of bike has it's downsides and benefits. For road racing we have external derailleurs and either rim or disk brakes, similar for off-road. These require routine maintenance and parts replacement, can't be easily ridden without special clothes, and aren't designed for carrying stuff (and get squirrelly).

For going places like work, meetings, grocery, or dinner we have IGH and roller (front) / Coaster (rear) on uprights. Our transportation bikes are much more comfortable to ride than any others, involve less sweat (mostly due to not leaning forward at all and thus avoiding skin folds), can be easily ridden in any clothes, carry gobs of stuff without getting squirrelly, and always work with no maintenance beyond a bit of air in the tires every few months. And, as a few people have pointed out, we look like normal people on these instead of weird geeky MAPILs.
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Old 05-25-15, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
Not sure what hills the OP has. I ride up a fair number of relatively steep hills with either an 8 speed Nexus or N360, both do just fine.

Keep in mind that bikeshare bikes don't use disk brakes because that'd likely keep 70% of their fleet unridable at any time. That's not good reliability. Bikeshare bikes must withstand a very considerable amount of abuse and the brakes they have actually hold up quite well. Disk brakes are great for stopping power but they also must be consistently maintained.
Where did you get the idea that disc brakes require constant maintenance? I serviced the pair of deore lx disc brakes sitting in my parts bin exactly once over the 8 years I used them and that was probably unnecessary. Most disc brakes these days are set up and forget...especially the mineral oil ones.

aren't designed for carrying stuff (and get squirrelly).
Could you expand on this a bit because I've never felt any of my commuters get squirrelly despite the fact that they have low-end race drive trains (ultegra).

And, as a few people have pointed out, we look like normal people on these instead of weird geeky MAPILs.
I did not realize that the type of bike one rides somehow dictates what sort of clothing one is allowed to wear...
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Old 05-25-15, 12:08 PM
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My wife has a Jamis Aurora Elite and loves it.

As mentioned previously, Salsa has some nice disc brake bikes.

Something I've really been interested in is a Brodie Ronin or Romax.

There are also some Soma disc frames, the Double Cross Disc and the Saga Disc.

For awhile Civia made some sweet disc brake commuters, the Hyland and the Bryant if you want to find a used one.

If you want something higher end there is the Gunnar Fastlane (and I believe they also make a Waterford version of the Fastlane for even more $$$).

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Old 05-25-15, 12:25 PM
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Disc brakes for a 3-5 mile commute? Yeah, that makes no sense.

Disc brakes to haul groceries?

Just slap a pair of kool stop salmons on front and rear for $10 and be done with it.

I just saved you $2150. You're welcome.
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Old 05-25-15, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by sam_cyclist View Post
Disc brakes for a 3-5 mile commute? Yeah, that makes no sense.

Disc brakes to haul groceries?

Just slap a pair of kool stop salmons on front and rear for $10 and be done with it.

I just saved you $2150. You're welcome.
Our commuter bikes are also our touring bikes, and discs are more reliable and safer, stop better in the wet, and worth it for us.

I'm currently building up my commuter/tourer from a Civia Hyland frame that I picked up used for $200 shipped (the frame is in new condition).

It will be a drop bar commuter, so the delta between Shimano 105 rim brakes and BB7 road discs is +$70-80 for the discs over the rim brakes, really not bad, and not even close to your $2150 number.

These days, the difference in prices between disc and non-disc hubs is non-existent, so for an equivalently outfitted bike except for rims vs discs there isn't much of a cost difference.

Your argument is really about building/buying a new bike vs keeping an existing bike.
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