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5 Mile commute.

Old 02-26-24, 11:57 AM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by Korina
Well? Where are our pics?
they are incoming. I should be close to my minimum post count now.
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Old 02-26-24, 01:43 PM
  #77  
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Originally Posted by Strawbunyan
they are incoming. I should be close to my minimum post count now.
Minimum post count is 10, so post away!
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Old 02-27-24, 01:26 PM
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I think a lot of what you need to think about is not so much BIKE-related, but related to the fact that you're going to arrive sweaty. I don't know what kind of job you have, so that could be more or less of an issue.

Considerations for the bike:
  • Get something with gears, esp. low gears for the hills. You've likely forgotten how hard hills are on a bike since you were a kid, and they're harder now that you're likely heavier and a bit out of shape
  • Get something that rolls smoothly on pavement; nothing with knobbies
  • Get something that will take a rack & fenders. It's SO nice to carry luggage on the bike rather than your back. (sweaty)
  • If you can afford an eBike, get one. Something of decent quality that is pedalable too. (I like Aventon) You'll thank yourself on every uphill or headwind. This will also remove a lot of the sweat-related concerns below.
Considerations for the commute:
  • Bring spare underwear and baby wipes or Quick Dude Shower; there's nothing worse than being swampy all day.
  • Have a spare shirt at work
  • Water bottle (one should do, for this commute)
  • Sunscreen for the ride home (keep at work)
  • Put FlatOut in your tires, unless they're really skinny
  • If you don't have luggage at first, try a messenger bag with the anti-rotation strap. You can wear it lower on your back and it won't be as sweaty as a backpack.
  • Get lights for your bike, esp. a bright flashing rear one. You don't want to hear the ol' SMIDSY. (Sorry mate, I didn't see you) Planet Bike
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Old 02-27-24, 01:49 PM
  #79  
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Frame: Custom designed 6061 Hydroformed Aluminum for 29" wheel, replaceable gear hanger, 135mm forged dropouts


Top Tube length: 21.69" (Small 15") - 22.22" (Medium 17") - 22.87" (Large 19") - 23.5" (X-Large 21")


Head Tube angle 68.5⁰ - Seat Tube angle 73⁰ - Chainstay Length 17.13"


Fork: Eastern Spring Fork 130mm Travel, Coil Sprung, Mechanical Lockout dial

Headset: Eastern Zero Stack Sealed Bearing, 2 x 10mm Spacer

Crankset: X-Gear Cold Forged 175mm arms 34t Chainring

Bottom Bracket: VP Cartridge Bearing

Chain: KMC Z9 114L Silver Grey

Cassette: X-Gear 9 Speed 11-42t Shimano-Sram Compatible

Rear Derailleur: X-Gear 9 Speed Forged Alloy Shimano-Sram Compatible

Gear Shifter: X-Gear 9 Speed Shimano-Sram Compatible

Brakes: Radius Hydraulic Disc with adjustable reach lever, 160mm Front and Rear Disc
Wheels: Eastern KT68 29" Sealed Bearing Quick Release Hubs, 36h Black Double Wall Rim, Black Stainless Spokes Brass Nipples

Tires: Wide 2.2" x 29" tires - style may vary

HandleBar: Eastern Tapered Alloy 740mm, 32mm Rise, 31.8mm Clamp

Stem: Eastern 3D Forged 50mm, 10deg Rise, 31.8mm Bar Clamp, Cro-Mo Bolts

Grips: Eastern Krayton Black with Lock-on Clamps

Seatpost: Eastern Forged alloy 30.9 x 350mm Height Marked with Quick Release Seatclamp

Saddle: Eastern Padded with Vinyl cover

Pedals: Eastern VP Alloy platform

Warranty: 5 years on Frame, 12mts on all other parts

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Old 02-27-24, 03:26 PM
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Taillights and lock.

Headlights and bell

Helmet
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Old 02-27-24, 03:31 PM
  #81  
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I know its not the best kit in the world but its the nicest bike ive ever had. I am blown away by how light it is and how nice everything feels. It moves along effortlessly on the road and in my grass. So far I am pleased with my purchase.
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Old 02-28-24, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Strawbunyan
i am halfway between Memphis and Nashville and as far south as you can get before you are in Alabama. My closest bike shop is a 90 minute drive.
Savannah,TN? I go there for work a bunch. I have some farm land spots I ride around. Careful of people with dogs, near Shiloh. Best and scariest workout ever.

Nice choice to begin riding again too! There is a tire that Maxxis that is a good mix for both road and trail called the Holy Roller that comes in fat sizes and can be a good middle ground for out there for both trail and road and actual gravel.

Last edited by mechanicmatt; 02-28-24 at 09:40 AM.
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Old 02-28-24, 11:02 AM
  #83  
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Congrats on the new bike. Where did you buy it?

Let us know how it goes.
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Old 02-28-24, 11:12 AM
  #84  
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Very good looking bike with ALL the bells and whistles I'm curious if you will soon find the 34/11a little too low for road riding between climbs.
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Old 02-28-24, 11:48 AM
  #85  
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Originally Posted by mechanicmatt
Savannah,TN? I go there for work a bunch. I have some farm land spots I ride around. Careful of people with dogs, near Shiloh. Best and scariest workout ever.

Nice choice to begin riding again too! There is a tire that Maxxis that is a good mix for both road and trail called the Holy Roller that comes in fat sizes and can be a good middle ground for out there for both trail and road and actual gravel.
I am right next door to Savannah. Waynesboro....even smaller. Thank you for the tire recommendation, i will check those out. I had not considered dogs but now that you mention it EVERYONES dogs just run loose around here, i might need to carry bones.
Edit: It does not appear to me that Maxxis makes that tire in a 29..which is sad because it looks awesome.

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Old 02-28-24, 11:49 AM
  #86  
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Originally Posted by Smaug1
Congrats on the new bike. Where did you buy it?

Let us know how it goes.
I got it from Eastern on Amazon....free shipping and half off so the frugal guy in me couldnt resist. It came RTR after pedal, bar, seat and front wheel install and everything seems to be functioning as intended as far as I can tell.
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Old 02-28-24, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Classtime
Very good looking bike with ALL the bells and whistles I'm curious if you will soon find the 34/11a little too low for road riding between climbs.
thank you. the manf site says it is SRAM compatible so I do plan on upgrading the drivetrain since i saved so much money....i am just not ready to go down that rabbit hole yet, i am still recovering from having learned way too much in the last 2 weeks about biking in general. Ill know better what i might want after a few weeks of riding I suppose.
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Old 02-28-24, 11:55 AM
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Reflectors. In my area you would need front and rear to be legal. I would actually consider losing the wheel reflectors. By the time a vehicle sees your wheel reflectors, and not your front/rear reflector, they are right on top of you and can't stop. False sense of security.
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Old 02-28-24, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottCommutes
Reflectors. In my area you would need front and rear to be legal. I would actually consider losing the wheel reflectors. By the time a vehicle sees your wheel reflectors, and not your front/rear reflector, they are right on top of you and can't stop. False sense of security.
i read through the laws here and it only mentions lights. I want to put some reflectors on it anyway but it did not come with any(I thought they had to and was expecting it to) so I will need to order them.
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Old 02-28-24, 06:27 PM
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Nice, love the yellow. Have you figured out how you're going to carry your stuff?
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Old 02-28-24, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Korina
Nice, love the yellow. Have you figured out how you're going to carry your stuff?
right now it is a backpack that is already a little heavu for my tastes....i didnt realize how much my work clothes and lunch actually weighed.
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Old 02-29-24, 02:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Strawbunyan
right now it is a backpack that is already a little heavu for my tastes....i didnt realize how much my work clothes and lunch actually weighed.
Wait until summer and your back gets all sweaty. You might look into a frame bag or a handlebar bag. Have fun with it! It looks like a blast to ride.
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Old 02-29-24, 07:19 AM
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If you mostly ride pavement and don't need knobby tires, try some smoothies...they will roll easier and speed you up.
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Old 02-29-24, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by BobbyG
If you mostly ride pavement and don't need knobby tires, try some smoothies...they will roll easier and speed you up.
I second that! You'll be amazed at the difference and wonder why you rode knobby tires.
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Old 02-29-24, 10:18 AM
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I am looking now to try to find a set of smoother tires. I am not sure exactly how wide this bike will fit but it has 2.2s on it now, most of the stuff i am finding is 2.5. I was looking at the Hookworms and the Grifters. Anyone have any good recomendations for a 29?
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Old 03-01-24, 10:35 AM
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Gravel King Slicks are nice.
WRT backpacks vs. bags on the bike: When I'm on the bike and riding, having everything in a big saddle bag ,or split between a saddle bag and a rando bag, or in panniers, is nice. BUT at both ends of the commute--packing to go to work or packing to go home, it is so much more convenient to put it all in a back pack. While in the house, I put my planner and papers in the sleeve, stuff my clothes at the bottom, and put my lunch on top so that my banana doesnt get smooshed and I'm ready to go instead of carrying multiple pieces of kit to the garage and packing up there.
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Old 03-01-24, 10:57 AM
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Not the prettiest for sure, but I am a big fan of a backpack and a crate. All my bike parts/tools live in the small front pocket of the backpack. My work stuff fills up the main pocket. When I ride, the backpack goes in the crate, but when I'm off the bike the backpack is super easy to keep with me.

Bonus - When I need to carry extra stuff, my backpack goes on my shoulders and i can fill up the crate or tie stuff to it.
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Old 03-01-24, 01:59 PM
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I can carry two (Ortlieb) panniers with one hand. One has clothes, pocket contents in a baggie; the other has dress shoes and laptop. Much easier for me that trying to keep a backpack on my back instead of sliding down an arm, or wrestling to get both straps on alternate arms. Cost was higher 15 years ago, but the amortized cost differential keeps sliding towards nil.

As always, YMMV.
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Old 03-01-24, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb
I can carry two (Ortlieb) panniers with one hand. One has clothes, pocket contents in a baggie; the other has dress shoes and laptop. Much easier for me that trying to keep a backpack on my back instead of sliding down an arm, or wrestling to get both straps on alternate arms. Cost was higher 15 years ago, but the amortized cost differential keeps sliding towards nil.

As always, YMMV.
Yeah, rack and pannier FTW for me, that's for sure. But OP will need one of those seatpost racks - I don't see any eyelets on that Alpaka. Nice bike, though.
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Old 03-02-24, 04:20 PM
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So that's what happens when you get a beach cruiser instead of a SUV.
Even with racks I've had grocery bags on the bars for 40,000 miles. LOL. No big deal really. This pic was on a 94 mile or so ride, with hundreds of trucks going by. They will swing less if the loops are hooked on 2 things, like mirror and bell. I bet they also signal to cars to get the hell farther over. LOL.



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