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

Owner's opinions wanted: MEC Hold Steady, Trek Soho, Giant Seek 0

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.

Owner's opinions wanted: MEC Hold Steady, Trek Soho, Giant Seek 0

Old 04-27-10, 09:40 PM
  #1  
jpmartineau
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Montréal, QC (Canada)
Posts: 409

Bikes: 2008 Surly LHT complete & 1988-ish fuglyfixed Specialized RockHopper

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Owner's opinions wanted: MEC Hold Steady, Trek Soho, Giant Seek 0

Hi,

I'm looking at a bike for commuting (10 miles each way, some hills). Living in Montreal, the bike needs to behave nicely in the winter and in moderately hilly situations. I was looking at the 3 following bikes:

- MEC hold steady
- Giant Seek 0
- Trek Soho

So far I'm leaning towards the MEC, which is a lot like the Giant, but with a carbon fiber fork and seatpost, and a few nicer (IMO) components. It also allows, I think, fatter tires.

I find the Soho interesting because of the belt drive, which would definitely be nice considering all the salt+sand they put on the road in winter around here. I'm a bit worried about the brakes though. Montreal isn't a very hilly place, but we do have a few very steep hills and the drivers being of latin descent (including myself), you definitely want proper braking power.

If you have one of these bikes, please let me know how things are turning out. Especially the MEC; there's very little info out there since the bike is new.

Thanks!
jpmartineau is offline  
Old 04-27-10, 11:13 PM
  #2  
irclean
Born Again Pagan
 
irclean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Southwestern Ontario
Posts: 2,241

Bikes: Schwinn hybrid, Raleigh MTB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I don't own any of those bikes, but I have considered purchasing each at one time or another. I took a 2009 Giant Seek 1 (the 2009 version of the Zero) out for a test ride last year. The all-aluminum frameset made me feel like I was gonna shake my fillings out. I was very disappointed because I really liked the understated look of the bike. I also like the look of the MEC bike - I saw one in Burlington recently but never test rode it. I would assume the carbon fork would smooth out the ride somewhat. The only way I would consider the Soho is if I swapped the front fork and roller brake out for a disc brake setup, which would drive it's already high price even higher.

Alternatively, since you live in Canada, you might want to check out the Norco Ceres. It's got a chromo frameset, Gates Carbon belt drive, an Alfine hub, and disc brakes. Should make for a great winter commuter (but you might want to spray some rust preventative in the frame tubes). I am seriously considering this bike for myself but I have yet to see it in person.
irclean is offline  
Old 04-28-10, 12:12 AM
  #3  
mtalinm
Senior Member
 
mtalinm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Westwood MA (just south of Boston)
Posts: 2,215

Bikes: 2009 Trek Soho

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I was ogling a Seek 0 until I rode it, and then it seemed like any other bike.

I got a great deal on a Trek Soho ($720, retails for $1050) and it has been generally good to me. I love love love the carbon belt instead of a chain - zero maintenance. The internal gears are also great - I love being able to change gears at a stoplight. The brakes work perfectly in the rain, which is great, although I would prefer discs for extra stopping power.

the great thing about the Soho is I don't have to do anything to maintain it ... just keeps running. no chain to worry about, no exposed gears or brakes.

Sounds like the Norco Ceres recommended above might be a step up from the Soho.
mtalinm is offline  
Old 04-28-10, 10:31 AM
  #4  
wunderkind
Pro Paper Plane Pilot
 
wunderkind's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 1,645
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
MEC bikes are rebadged Giants and Dahon for folders.

I saw a MEC 1972. It looked good. I find their prices aren't as competitive given LBS can offer deep discounts on year old bikes. Something to consider.
wunderkind is offline  
Old 04-28-10, 10:18 PM
  #5  
jpmartineau
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Montréal, QC (Canada)
Posts: 409

Bikes: 2008 Surly LHT complete & 1988-ish fuglyfixed Specialized RockHopper

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by irclean View Post
you might want to check out the Norco Ceres.
Thanks for the pointer, this one is definitely interesting! +1 on the rustproofing though.

I eliminated the Soho from my shortlist because of the brakes — I want some serious bite.

Keep the info coming!
jpmartineau is offline  
Old 04-29-10, 11:09 AM
  #6  
snorkel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 175
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have an '09 Giant Seek 2 that I use for commuting and love dearly. As already stated it is not the softest of rides, but I don't think it is all that bad. It just has a feeling of being really sturdy and sure footed. My only real complaint with the bike was that the handlebars it comes with just seemed ridiculously wide to me. It made the ride feel very awkward and steering seemed way exaggerated. I replaced them with some trekking bars from Nashbar and haven't looked back.

I was looking at a few other bikes in this price range/class. To give you a hint of what my other options were my LBS options left me with Trek, Gary Fisher, Cannondale, and Giant. The disc brakes finally pushed me towards the Seek.
snorkel is offline  
Old 04-29-10, 11:56 AM
  #7  
dellwilson
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 261
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have a 2009 Giant Seek 1 that I bought a couple of months ago. I love riding it. I feel much more casual riding that than my road bike. I guess this is mainly due to the more upright position. Unlike the post above, I don't feel the road unduly. My previous commuter was a steel, '81 Peugeot touring frame and the switch was not noticeable in terms of harsher feel.

The one negative I have is that the three or four guys who commute around here do so on road bikes, are not self-contained, and are kicking my ass. When I'm riding alone, I'm just enjoying the ride. But when I'm keeping up with or chasing down another commuter, the combination of the heavier, more-upright Seek and the 25lbs of panniers makes me feel like I'm having to put way more watts into the same ride. I can try to tame my ego into not worrying about it, but it may just be easier to bring my road bike out one day per week and drop them.

Bottom line is that I love the Seek except when I'm trying to reel in another commuter on a road bike.
dellwilson is offline  
Old 04-29-10, 07:16 PM
  #8  
cervelo48
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 59
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by wunderkind View Post
MEC bikes are rebadged Giants and Dahon for folders.

I saw a MEC 1972. It looked good. I find their prices aren't as competitive given LBS can offer deep discounts on year old bikes. Something to consider.
According to Mec's website: Mec bikes are designed in Canada. So, if that is the case, then they can't just be rebadged frames.

But anyhoo, I don't own or have ridden any of those bikes, but I do have a Mec chinook. I bought this bike over similarly priced/level bikes from other manufacturers because: (1) I like Mec, and (2) it was a bit cheaper.

I'm satisfied with the bike, and unlike dealing with a LBS, I know I will get consistent service at Mec.
cervelo48 is offline  
Old 05-11-10, 07:10 AM
  #9  
jpmartineau
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Montréal, QC (Canada)
Posts: 409

Bikes: 2008 Surly LHT complete & 1988-ish fuglyfixed Specialized RockHopper

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanks for your input!
jpmartineau is offline  
Old 05-11-10, 08:19 AM
  #10  
JeremyZ
Senior Member
 
JeremyZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 794

Bikes: 1997 Schwinn Searcher GS, 2007 Dahon Curve D3

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I'd have gone with the Soho from those choices. Better local parts availability, likely better after-sale support too. (having bought locally) I think the brakes would have plenty of bite. I guess you're looking pretty close for weaknesses so you can make the best choice though.

The belt drive is the way of the future. No rust, no grease, and only a partial "chainguard" would be necessary. I looked at a couple of belt drive bikes before getting my Simple City 3, but they were all a bit too rich for my blood at the time. Next time!
JeremyZ is offline  
Old 05-11-10, 08:39 AM
  #11  
destikon
FNG
 
destikon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Quarry Stone
Posts: 877

Bikes: Raleigh Special * Nishiki MTN Winter Commuter * Trek Soho 3 * Specialized Langster Seattle

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have the Soho 3 (the year before carbon drive came out). The frame is descent though not super lite. It has plenty of clearance for big fatty tires & fenders. I have 38s and fenders on mine no problem. It has plenty of eyelets and braze-ons for all of the things commuters need like water bottles and racks both front and back. Mine has the avid bb7s which I'm not a big fan of but I have tried the new roller brakes on the carbon drive and they work awesome. The Soho is a good solid bike, but I haven't tried the others in your list.
__________________
Originally Posted by powers2b View Post
time's up
destikon is offline  
Old 05-11-10, 10:42 AM
  #12  
AndrewP
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Montreal
Posts: 6,521

Bikes: Peugeot Hybrid, Minelli Hybrid

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
A friend at my office (South Shore Montreal) bought the MEC 10 days ago and commuted with me twice last week. He sometimes found the candy pedals hard to clip in, and there is no adjustment on spring tension. I think different cleats are available to give harder or easier release. MEC said they would change the saddle at no charge if it caused discomfort. He is very pleased with his bike.
AndrewP is offline  
Old 08-24-11, 07:37 AM
  #13  
maldrien
Newbie
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 2
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by jpmartineau View Post
Hi,

I'm looking at a bike for commuting (10 miles each way, some hills). Living in Montreal, the bike needs to behave nicely in the winter and in moderately hilly situations. I was looking at the 3 following bikes:

- MEC hold steady
- Giant Seek 0
- Trek Soho
Hey JP, I am from Montreal also and I was wondering which bike did you choose. How was the internal geared hub during the winter and the very cold weather? I'm asking because I am looking at the Kona Dr.Fine 2011 for winter and commuting use.

Cheers
maldrien is offline  
Old 04-21-12, 01:31 PM
  #14  
Dr. Rockenstein
Newbie
 
Dr. Rockenstein's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: UMRK
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I'd also like to know what decisions you all went with. I've been looking at all the bikes mentioned, and I'm leaning towards the MEC, but I like the Kona too. Any input would be great.
Dr. Rockenstein is offline  
Old 04-21-12, 01:41 PM
  #15  
canyoneagle 
Senior Member
 
canyoneagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chapel Hill, NC (temporary)
Posts: 4,511

Bikes: Jamis Dragon 29er. Frame waiting for roads: 1990 Zullo EL-OS

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 116 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I bought a Hold Steady for my wife, and it is a phenomenal bike IMO. She loves it, as well. I've installed fenders and a rear rack on it, and it as a terrific setup.
The quality is excellent - Alfine, Shimano Hydraulic brakes (excellent brakes), very nice bike for the money.
__________________
Main bike: retro-mod build - 1990 Zullo EL-OS frame with 2018 Chorus
canyoneagle is offline  
Old 04-21-12, 03:22 PM
  #16  
Trifusion
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 68
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I am looking at those as well but have pretty much decided on a Scott SUB 10

Greg
Trifusion is offline  
Old 04-21-12, 11:43 PM
  #17  
ddez
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Alberta,Canada.
Posts: 800
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
MEC has a great return policy. Doubt a LBS can beat it.
ddez is offline  
Old 04-22-12, 12:00 AM
  #18  
ottawa_adam
Senior Member
 
ottawa_adam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Ottawa Canada
Posts: 448

Bikes: kona dew hybrid, MEC shadowlands

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have the MEC Shadowlands, which is similar to the Hold Steady save for the drive train. I absolutely love the bike. It's very navigable and tough in the city and handles well. Although, I have last year's model, which doesn't have the carbon fork, but I'm happy with that.

The components on the bike are exceptional for my style of riding.

My main gripe is that the frames are only available in the standard sizes of S-M-L, so you have to make sure you test different sizes.
ottawa_adam is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
UmneyDurak
Northern California
22
11-20-17 09:41 PM
Ygduf
Northern California
22
06-18-10 11:42 AM
jpearl
Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational)
13
12-06-06 09:43 PM
CChaves
Mountain Biking
20
03-17-05 02:19 PM

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.