Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Commuting
Reload this Page >

SoCal commuters -- use fenders?

Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

SoCal commuters -- use fenders?

Old 09-08-09, 12:40 AM
  #1  
big scholar
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
SoCal commuters -- use fenders?

Hey guys. So I moved to SoCal from San Francisco in May, and I've experienced about one hour of rain so far. I'm yet to remove my fenders, but I can count on one hand the number of people I've seen using them.

Do you guys use fenders down here? When does the rainy "season" start, and how long does it last? I'm in Santa Monica, if that makes a difference. Thanks!
big scholar is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 01:10 AM
  #2  
lbear
just going for a ride...
 
lbear's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon
Posts: 584

Bikes: LeMond Sarthe, OCR A1, OCR 2, Cypress DX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I don't think you need to worry until "fire season" ends.
lbear is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 01:27 AM
  #3  
Sci-Fi
Senior Member
 
Sci-Fi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,324
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Guess I'm one of those you missed counting...lol. Most people don't add fenders if they didn't come with the bike and they tend not to ride in the rain. Those that are dedicated bike commuters or ride cruiser bikes will tend to have fenders: sand, dirt, rocks, etc kicking up can be just as bad as water/rain conditions.

As far as rainy season, it depends on if it's a El Nino or La Nina year. El Nino is forming right now and it is predicted to be a wet winter...so expect it to start late Oct or Nov and run thru March. But rainy season down south isn't like what you are used to in SF. The total rainfall and number of rainy days is a lot less but some storms can drop a load in a short time and that can cause a lot of flooding, esp out in the valley.
Sci-Fi is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 09:47 AM
  #4  
yes
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 675
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I moved from the southeast and quickly removed fenders from all but one bike. By this time of year, it seems like it has not rained in a decade, and everything is brown. If it did rain I would be happy to go out and ride without fenders for a day. It would truly not concern me to be caught without. You might want to have a bike with fenders for the odd rain day in the winter.
yes is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 09:48 AM
  #5  
alicestrong
Pedal pusher...
 
alicestrong's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 7,769

Bikes: I've got a bunch...

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I don't find the need for them, but if I were to change my mind I would get the kind that snap on and off as needed.
__________________
May you live long, live strong, and live happy!
alicestrong is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 10:49 AM
  #6  
Brian Sorrell
My bicycle is fixed
 
Brian Sorrell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Auckland, NZ
Posts: 1,026

Bikes: '08 Surly Steamroller, '07 Surly Cross Check

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It's not just the rain. There's also the urban drool from the masses who over-water their absurdly green lawns. That's the stuff that'll really get you.
Brian Sorrell is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 10:52 AM
  #7  
alicestrong
Pedal pusher...
 
alicestrong's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 7,769

Bikes: I've got a bunch...

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Come to think of it, my rear rack kind of acts like a fender...
__________________
May you live long, live strong, and live happy!
alicestrong is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 12:33 PM
  #8  
bhop
Senior Member
 
bhop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 1,894

Bikes: Bianchi Via Nirone 7, Jamis Sputnik

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I don't have fenders, but then I don't ride in the rain. Of course, it only rains a couple times a year.. I tried riding to work in the rain once and it was just a pain. Plus i'm scared of L.A. drivers in the rain. They're always crashing into things and other cars when there's even a light drizzle.
bhop is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 12:41 PM
  #9  
thenomad
Riding like its 1990
 
thenomad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: IE, SoCal
Posts: 3,773
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It rains so little here that most cars have bald tires and rotted windshield wipers. A bad combination when given the fact that most drivers here don't adjust speed to wet conditions. That's why we have massive accidents. That's why I won't ride when its raining. I don't mind getting hit with water but 3000lb of steel is another story.
thenomad is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 01:00 PM
  #10  
genec
genec
 
genec's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: West Coast
Posts: 26,258

Bikes: custom built, sannino, beachbike, giant trance x2

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6092 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 13 Times in 11 Posts
Originally Posted by big scholar View Post
Hey guys. So I moved to SoCal from San Francisco in May, and I've experienced about one hour of rain so far. I'm yet to remove my fenders, but I can count on one hand the number of people I've seen using them.

Do you guys use fenders down here? When does the rainy "season" start, and how long does it last? I'm in Santa Monica, if that makes a difference. Thanks!
"it never rains in southern California... "
genec is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 02:05 PM
  #11  
big scholar
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanks for the input, everyone. Come to think of it, whenever I remove my wheels, I notice a layer of gunk under my fenders, so they're definitely fending off something.

I'm interested to see what October and beyond are like. Yeah, the rain is probably not that big of a deal compared to other places, but unlike SF, I'm not able to take transit quite as easily. Since I have no car and only one bike, I'll leave the fenders on for now.
big scholar is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 02:27 PM
  #12  
Praxis
Not a legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Diego
Posts: 379
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have just a rear fender. I think I took off the front one a year ago to get the bike into a car and never got around to putting it back on.
Praxis is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 02:31 PM
  #13  
CACycling
Senior Member
 
CACycling's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Oxnard, CA
Posts: 4,564

Bikes: '08 Fuji Roubaix RC; '07 Schwinn Le Tour GS; '92 Diamond Back Ascent EX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I added fenders to my commuter last winter even though I don't commute on rainy days (either of them ). No matter what time of year it is, it is rare I make it to work without running through a far amount of water. Mostly from people overwatering. It definately keeps everything a lot cleaner than running without and a few ounces of fenders aren't going to impact my ride enough to notice.
CACycling is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 03:18 PM
  #14  
lbear
just going for a ride...
 
lbear's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon
Posts: 584

Bikes: LeMond Sarthe, OCR A1, OCR 2, Cypress DX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I've lived in L.A., Monterey ( very much like S.F.) and Portland . So Cal rain doesn't come very often but when it does it can rain hard. It can be very dangerous, oil built-up on the roads and drivers inexperience on wet roads.
lbear is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 03:38 PM
  #15  
GP 
Senior Member
 
GP's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,631
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by alicestrong View Post
I don't find the need for them, but if I were to change my mind I would get the kind that snap on and off as needed.
Same here. I've been thinking about getting one of those seatpost mounting fenders for a couple of years but the rain always stops before I have a chance to buy it.
GP is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 04:02 PM
  #16  
Brian Sorrell
My bicycle is fixed
 
Brian Sorrell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Auckland, NZ
Posts: 1,026

Bikes: '08 Surly Steamroller, '07 Surly Cross Check

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by thenomad View Post
It rains so little here that most cars have bald tires and rotted windshield wipers. A bad combination when given the fact that most drivers here don't adjust speed to wet conditions. That's why we have massive accidents. That's why I won't ride when its raining. I don't mind getting hit with water but 3000lb of steel is another story.
Some folks I work with use this sort of reasoning against me when I ride to work in the rain. My retort:
This is precisely why I wouldn't want to drive in the rain. Cars are death traps.
Brian Sorrell is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 10:04 PM
  #17  
oldranger
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 84
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The splash from passing cars gets me far wetter than what is thrown up by my own tires. My racks do tend to ward off some of the liquid. I just don't like to mess with fenders - I ditched mine right after I shed the training wheels.
oldranger is offline  
Old 09-08-09, 11:48 PM
  #18  
3bikes
VeloFellow
 
3bikes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 273

Bikes: Commuter(Specialized Globe 6,IG8), Mountain (Specialized FSR), Road (Felt F55-2006)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
My Specialized Globe 6 came with full plastic fenders and I'm sold on them. Every commute by bike, I run through sprinkler run-off or spew from a garbage truck that made a right hand turn. In the case of Hollywood, every toxic or biohazard thing you can think of. Even on the driest of summers, you run the chance of getting wet or filthed up. For commuting, the right fenders can make your commute better.
-3bikes
3bikes is offline  
Old 09-09-09, 12:05 AM
  #19  
Rumpled
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 903
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I commute 1-2 days a week and usually not on the five weekdays a year it rains. I'm o a MTB and only 2.5 miles to work.
Plus, we have showers at work.

So, no fenders for me.

They're almost like snow tires here - an unkown entity.
Rumpled is offline  
Old 09-09-09, 10:00 PM
  #20  
zephyr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Lake Forest, CA
Posts: 483

Bikes: Surly crosscheck, Rivendell Atlantis, Ciocc Mockba80, Surly Troll

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I commute every day including light to medium rain days. Last "winter" rain season I don't think I missed riding the bike on any work days because of rain. Even worse than rain days are heavy fog drizzle days which can occur in spring and even early summer. That creates a gritty, wet sludge that can coat the chain with crud. I have full coverage SKS fenders on both of my commute bikes, and leave them on year round. I bike commute daily but I sure don't want to clean my chain that often, or even once a week. With fenders, my chain is good for about 400-500 miles between cleanings. The front fender with mud flap extension blocks nearly all of the junk that the front tire would otherwise throw onto the chain, bike, lower headset and me. Did I mention I have not changed my Shimano Ultegra headset in 7 years / over 30K miles of use? Thanks, fenders.
zephyr is offline  
Old 09-10-09, 12:22 AM
  #21  
tFUnK
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,408

Bikes: GT Forte Ti, GT GTR Carbon Sport, BMC RaceMachine, Guru Photon, Bianchi San Jose, Trek Portland, Xootr Swift

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
wondering the same; probably will get fenders by halloween. i have 3 bikes and at least one of them should be geared for wet weather riding.
tFUnK is offline  
Old 09-10-09, 12:30 AM
  #22  
Nerdanel 
Can't Re Member
 
Nerdanel's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Wooster OH
Posts: 364

Bikes: 2009 Randonee, 2014 Bike Friday NWT

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Sprinkler runoff creates a lake at the end of my street pretty much every day in the summer, so I commute with fenders. I suppose they'd be useful in the rain as well.
__________________
Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.
Nerdanel is offline  
Old 09-10-09, 05:21 AM
  #23  
Mr IGH
afraid of whales
 
Mr IGH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Front Range, CO
Posts: 4,322
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 346 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
They're not just for water:
Attached Images
File Type: jpg
fender psa1.jpg (107.9 KB, 18 views)
Mr IGH is offline  
Old 09-10-09, 08:14 AM
  #24  
xylashellx
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 45
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
+1 no fenders and just take the bus when it rains. if i have to go far i take the car.
xylashellx is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.