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SLC Newbie Needing Bike for 6.5 mi Commute

Old 09-06-19, 10:43 PM
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brianitliong
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SLC Newbie Needing Bike for 6.5 mi Commute

Hi everyone!

I'm new to the forum, happy to be here, and am looking for a good commuter bike for a 6.5 mi work commute (roundtrip). I don't know the first thing about bikes so help a beginner out, please

-B
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Old 09-07-19, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by brianitliong View Post
Hi everyone!

I'm new to the forum, happy to be here, and am looking for a good commuter bike for a 6.5 mi work commute (roundtrip). I don't know the first thing about bikes so help a beginner out, please

-B
Welcome! How often, full time or not, what’s your budget?
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Old 09-07-19, 03:55 PM
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What type of terrain and weather do you expect to ride in? If it is all flat roads, you can do that on just about anything. If you are going up steep hills with sections of gravel in the rain, you will be looking at a more limited selection.
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Old 09-07-19, 10:45 PM
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Old 09-08-19, 09:55 AM
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Around 10k round trip I'd pretty much use anything available to me.

If you're planning to use the same bike for other types of riding then I might put more thought into it.
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Old 09-10-19, 01:26 PM
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I'll agree with most people here that for 10km one way, what bike it is doesn't matter that much. Find one that you like enough to ride, but that isn't so expensive that you can't stand to lose it (because you won't want to leave it locked up).
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Old 09-10-19, 05:25 PM
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I know it was a pretty simple answer, but thank you all for your time in answering my question.

My commute would be on flat ground and in dry weather (with the occasional rainfall), so sounds like I'll be shopping for almost anything.

Next question is: What vendor/store would you recommend buying a bike from? Should I go to a specialty store or a simple sporting goods store? Or does that even matter for me?

Thank you all!

-B

Last edited by brianitliong; 09-10-19 at 05:26 PM. Reason: clarification in my wording
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Old 09-10-19, 07:06 PM
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If you're locking it up for the day then don't buy anything worth stealing. The more beat up the better.

If you can bring it inside with you then you've got more choices.
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Old 09-10-19, 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by brianitliong View Post
What vendor/store would you recommend buying a bike from? Should I go to a specialty store or a simple sporting goods store? Or does that even matter for me?
Since you're just looking for a commuter, check out the bikes available on the Salt Lake City Craigslist.
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Old 09-10-19, 08:35 PM
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You might want to consider a bike that can take wider tires and has rack and fender mounts. I bought an old racing bike and rebuilt it. I justified the purchase by telling myself I would use it as a summer commuter. I've made it work for the last 3 years, but there are some rough patches on my commute where it would be better to have tires wider than 23mm for a smoother ride.
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Old 09-11-19, 07:30 PM
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You really should consider if you'll use it for more than commuting, but I wouldn't go crazy with it either. You could do 6.5 miles on just about anything. Go over 10 and it starts to get in an area where you'll want something that feels comfortable. Go uphill and you'll want gears.
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Old 09-12-19, 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
Since you're just looking for a commuter, check out the bikes available on the Salt Lake City Craigslist.
KSL Classifieds is actually a bit better than the local Craigslist. The local bike collective usually has quite a few bikes for sale, too.

I've got an old Cannondale that might work for you, assuming you're 6' 4" tall or so. It's a 63cm.
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Old 09-13-19, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by brianitliong View Post
Next question is: What vendor/store would you recommend buying a bike from? Should I go to a specialty store or a simple sporting goods store? Or does that even matter for me?
SLC is blessed with an abundance of local bike shops (LBS). Go there to buy your bike.

Since you're a beginner, you'll benefit from help picking out a good bike (some bikes really aren't well suited for commuting, though you can make most of them work). A good LBS will make sure you get a bike that fits you. They'll help you pick out accessories that will make your commute easier, and either fit them for you or show you how they work. The LBS can train you on how to shift gears and how to fix a flat tire. They'll be there to service your bike as it wears, and perhaps show you what and how they're doing it to save your some time. A really good LBS will have someone there who can help you pick out a good commute route, and hook you up with other cyclists for other rides.

Some of that you can look up on youtube or various web pages. And some of those videos and web pages are excellent. But some of them are unclear, misleading, or outright crap. Go ahead and look through them, but as a beginner, you'll do better to find an LBS you trust, and to deal with them.
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Old 09-13-19, 09:17 AM
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If you do go to an LBS, Saturday Cycles tends to specialize in commuters and touring bikes. They're kind of throwbacks to the Rivendell or Sheldon Brown schools, very good, down-to-Earth folks who don't mind taking time to talk things over with you.
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Old 09-13-19, 11:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Second Mouse View Post
If you do go to an LBS, Saturday Cycles tends to specialize in commuters and touring bikes. They're kind of throwbacks to the Rivendell or Sheldon Brown schools, very good, down-to-Earth folks who don't mind taking time to talk things over with you.
Would that be the "just ride" version of Rivendell, or the one that "it takes only hundreds of dollars of upgrades to early-80's style parts to make a good commuter out of an old MTB," or the one that "our custom frame prices are going up $500 next week so order today"
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Old 09-13-19, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Would that be the "just ride" version of Rivendell, or the one that "it takes only hundreds of dollars of upgrades to early-80's style parts to make a good commuter out of an old MTB," or the one that "our custom frame prices are going up $500 next week so order today"
Yes, that's the one!
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Old 09-20-19, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
Since you're just looking for a commuter, check out the bikes available on the Salt Lake City Craigslist.
Locals here tend to use https://classifieds.ksl.com/ more than craigslist.

Check the 'cycling' page. Way more options than CL.

Do you plan on riding through the winter, or only when the weather's nice? I ride all year, but I have a velo for when the weather gets bad (like today).
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Old 09-21-19, 07:35 AM
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For a 3 mile commute, flat roads, self-professed beginner, I'd say find a new single speed, put lights on it and declare it done.

Maintenance on a single speed is simple and infrequent. They're not as likely to break down on you. Parts are cheap. You don't have to know much to pick one out. The up front cost is less. Your commute will go just as quickly as it would on a road bike.
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