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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.

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Old 07-22-10, 08:53 PM   #1
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help with build list

So I tried this in the mtb forum and got no help at all so I figured I'd try you fine folks.

So I ride bikes pretty much very day, but other than a couple of old winter beaters I've built I have never owned a decent mountain bike. This is about to change as I just picked up a surly 1x1 frameset off ebay. I want to stick with a rigid fork as I'll be using the bike a fair amount for winter trail riding here in minnesota. Other than that I'd like to try riding some singletrack, but probably nothing too extreme. I'm aware that as a newb it prob would have been a better idea to pick up a cheap complete and then swap stuff out as I figure out what I like, but I ended up with a price on the frameset that was too good to let go. For the parts other than the frameset I'd like to end up below about $800, under is better but if there is a good reason to go over I can be persuaded. This will likely be mainly used for winter commuting and doing deliveries as well. I'm thinking of a single speed but I don't know much about IGHs. I've thought about an alfine hub, or maybe even a nuvinci360, but I don't know how durable they are. The last few winters I've used beaters, but not had nearly as much fun riding them as I have my better bikes. Any thoughts or advice would be appreciated.

Here is my very incomplete list of what I have so far.

frame 1x1
fork 1x1
crankset ?
chainring ?
bottom bracket shimano cartridge bb
pedals, odesy twisted pc with holdfast/ maybe spd
cog surly 22t
chain kHz 410R rust resistant
headset cane creek s-3
brakes avid bb7
brake lever ?
handlebars ? maybe arc bars
wheelset ?
stem? prob dimension or salsa
tires 1.5 or 1.9 studded that I have already
grips ? maybe oury, maybe ergo plus bar ends
fenders - velo-orange
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Old 07-29-10, 08:36 PM   #2
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If you want to stay under $800, you need to go with the basic, no-nonsense parts to get your bike rolling. I know lots of guys will fuss at me for not recommending high quality parts, but the important thing is to get the bike finished, You can upgrade parts as you need to, but the main thing is to get a setup that's comfortable.

For commuting, you might want plain straight bars, or use bar ends. A lot of folks use Trekking bars (like me) and like them a lot. Cruiser/arc bars work fine, too. You also need a good saddle (good is relative, just get one that fits and is comfortable). Everything else is negotiable.

You're going to want a way to carry stuff, so look into a good bag, or a trunk bag, cheap panniers, etc.

You could go with a SS setup, it depends on your route, and if you have hills, etc. I could get away with it here, I live in Louisiana... but I'd rather have gears in case I need them. I've used some IGH setups, they're not the cheapest, but they work well. You might be fine with just a 3-speed, you can get some really nice ones with all kinds of brake options.

Since it's going to be ridden hard, and in winter, I wouldn't worry about putting tons of money into components. Get good, solid wheels. Nothing flyweight, you want reliable and maintenance-free.

You can look into other things like lights and fenders, but again, that's your preference. All you really need is the bike, and a desire to ride it.
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Old 07-29-10, 10:10 PM   #3
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Personally, I like IGH bikes; especially for winter commuting. The constant cleaning of the chain, cassette, derailleur, etc. got old really quickly, as did being stuck in one gear when the derailleur froze up. My new ride has an Alfine hub and, from what I understand, it is sealed from the elements. There are better hubs available, but they are pricey (think Rohloff). If you're not in too much of a hurry, the Alfine 11-speed is due out in September, but that would likely eat up at least half of your budget. The Alfine 8-speed can be found from $200 - $300 so shop around.

Here's a good, seemingly unbiased site that contains reviews of different IGH's:

Another vote for trekking bars (they're great), but flat bars with good bar ends will provide almost as many hand positions. Ergon GC3's come to mind.
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