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Just ordered a Trek Belleville, anyone else have one?

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Just ordered a Trek Belleville, anyone else have one?

Old 04-09-11, 11:10 AM
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harshbarj
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Just ordered a Trek Belleville, anyone else have one?

Hey all, I just put in an order for a Trek Belleville and it is expected to arrive next Friday. I was just wondering if anyone else here has one?

Sadly my local bike shop did not have one in stock so I could not test ride it, but I have ridden 3-speed bikes before and love the simplicity of it. Should add this will be my main commuter bike (just under 16km total each day)

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Old 04-09-11, 11:51 AM
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I don't have one, but it looks like a nice bike. I would add a mud flap on the front fender to keep your feet dry.
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Old 04-09-11, 12:02 PM
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I love the styling on those bikes.
I have heard mixed reviews on them, but it seems to me that they are stylish, functional and reasonably priced.

I would imagine that any minor niggles that have been observed (chime in, Belleview owners!) would be easily rectified with basic mechanical awareness/skills and perhaps some discretionary component upgrades.

It looks like a great bike to me - please post your impressions and experiences with it as you spend time on it!
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Old 04-09-11, 12:33 PM
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I note catalog spec is Nexus 3 speed , a hub /wheel swap
for a wider range gear hub is always possible..
say Nexus 8..

J bend top tube is a good design feature .
dutch bikes like Gazelle have used that on tall rider's sizes
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Old 04-09-11, 12:33 PM
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Nice looking bike. Reminds me of the Giant Via 1 3-speed. I almost pulled the trigger on one of those at my local shop.
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Old 04-10-11, 10:21 AM
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I love that manufacturers are developing well designed bicycles for the average joe. And, although I think this is a sharp looking bicycle, the specs reveal it was thoughtfully made for an everyday rider, and not just someone looking to accessorize their life (ie Electra bicycles).

Have you seen the film "The Triplets of Belleville"? It has a bicycle theme running through the whole thing. Sort of a strange flick, but I liked it. I wonder if that's where Trek got the name ?

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Old 04-10-11, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by powitte View Post
Have you seen the film "The Triplets of Belleville"? It has a bicycle theme running through the whole thing. Sort of a strange flick, but I liked it. I wonder if that's where Trek got the name ?
As I recall, 'The Triplets of Belleville' was all about racing. I think there is a French neighbourhood by that name, or something. Velo-Orange has a handlebar named after it. Of course, the 'commute' from the triplets is one of the least pleasant commutes I could think of, wine notwithstanding.
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Old 04-10-11, 11:35 AM
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I've played with one, not ridden. It's a nice, solid, pretty heavy.
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Old 04-10-11, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by powitte View Post
I love that manufacturers are developing well designed bicycles for the average joe. And, although I think this is a sharp looking bicycle, the specs reveal it was thoughtfully made for an everyday rider, and not just someone looking to accessorize their life (ie Electra bicycles).

Have you seen the film "The Triplets of Belleville"? It has a bicycle theme running through the whole thing. Sort of a strange flick, but I liked it. I wonder if that's where Trek got the name ?
I don't think there's any denying that Trek makes bikes that are intended to be ridden. So I wouldn't expect any less from them.
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Old 04-10-11, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by harshbarj View Post
Should add this will be my main commuter bike (just under 16km total each day)
I hope it's a flat commute, because it looks a tad heavy. It looks comfortable, too though, and stylish.
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Old 04-10-11, 01:23 PM
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Regarding the limited range of the 3sp gearing -- another IGH hub would slot right in, but it also has a derailleur hanger if you ever want to go that way.
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Old 04-10-11, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by fuzz2050 View Post
As I recall, 'The Triplets of Belleville' was all about racing. I think there is a French neighbourhood by that name, or something. Velo-Orange has a handlebar named after it. Of course, the 'commute' from the triplets is one of the least pleasant commutes I could think of, wine notwithstanding.
Belleville is French for "beautiful city". I live in France and there are at least 10 Bellevilles here. Looking at Google Maps, I find 8 in the U.S. too. It's a common place name. Likewise, "Bonneville" (good city) is common too.
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Old 04-10-11, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
Regarding the limited range of the 3sp gearing -- another IGH hub would slot right in, but it also has a derailleur hanger if you ever want to go that way.
I have ridden a Nexus 3--I built up a wheel for my wife's bike. The problem with the 3-speed, in my opinion, isn't that the ratio is too narrow. Rather, that it's too widely spaced between the gears to be suitable for a flat commute. It probably would be perfect for somewhere hilly, assuming you set the gearing so 2nd is a good cruising ratio for you.

In Omaha, I'd suspect that you'll find yourself spinning out very quickly in 1st, and rarely getting to 3rd unless you have a stiff tailwind. That, or you'll be awkwardly between gears somewhere at a cruising speed. That being said, Shimano's Nexus 3 has only gotten more popular in recent years, so there must be plenty of satisfied users. As many people on this forum will tell you, for less than 5 miles 1-way, almost anything will be suitable. I recommend you try to satisfy yourself with the stock equipment.

If you don't think this is likely, then return the bicycle and buy a new one. A new 7 or 8 spd IGH wheel will run you probably $3-400. It's not worth it.
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Old 04-10-11, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by powitte View Post
I have ridden a Nexus 3--I built up a wheel for my wife's bike. The problem with the 3-speed, in my opinion, isn't that the ratio is too narrow. Rather, that it's too widely spaced between the gears to be suitable for a flat commute. It probably would be perfect for somewhere hilly, assuming you set the gearing so 2nd is a good cruising ratio for you.

In Omaha, I'd suspect that you'll find yourself spinning out very quickly in 1st, and rarely getting to 3rd unless you have a stiff tailwind. That, or you'll be awkwardly between gears somewhere at a cruising speed. That being said, Shimano's Nexus 3 has only gotten more popular in recent years, so there must be plenty of satisfied users. As many people on this forum will tell you, for less than 5 miles 1-way, almost anything will be suitable. I recommend you try to satisfy yourself with the stock equipment.

If you don't think this is likely, then return the bicycle and buy a new one. A new 7 or 8 spd IGH wheel will run you probably $3-400. It's not worth it.
Omaha has plenty of hills and is far from flat.

I like the look of this bike especially the retro Trek decals on the seat tube. I would worry a bit that its too heavy, but the commuter I am building up right now probably won't be much if any lighter. I like the relaxed geometry alot.
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Old 04-10-11, 09:14 PM
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I was really stoked to get this bike for quite a while, ended up going for a Globe Live instead. But the other month, one of them finally came in stock here in Calgary, so I went to go look anyways.

Well, my personal impression of the Belleville after having tried it out, is a bit mixed. The frame is pretty good, and the bike is well accessorized for the price. The styling is nice. The overall build quality of the bike isn't terrible, but also isn't anything great either. They're stuffing a lot of features into a relatively small price tag, so quality on some components suffers.

The bike is designed to look a bit like a porteur, but I wouldn't be fooled - it has a pretty high trail, and handles quite on par with a comfort bike. In the end, I thought that was okay - the front basket isn't really a high payload basket anyways. The Belleville should have a pretty good ride as long as you aren't looking at the front basket as anything more than a little extra platform for some light groceries, etc.

The worst parts of the bike to me were the saddle and the grips. They are both extremely poor, which I was disappointed by. For an "eco" bike, wanting to throw out your saddle and grips the moment you touch them isn't very impressive. The saddle was spongy, the grips are basically hard plastic. In reality, these are things that people often change anyways, but the stock equipment on both counts was simply horrible.

The stem and bars on the Belleville are also one piece. If the design works for you, great! If not, well, it will be a pain. The stem can apparently be raised up to 30mm according to Trek, thanks to its very tall design - but unfortunately, if you need to move the bars back or forth, or get a different bar altogether, the whole bar / stem system has to be changed at once.

All in all, I still liked the Belleville a fair bit after trying it out, it just wasn't the magical beast I thought it might be at first. A little bit of "you get what you pay for" had settled in, but it was still a pretty decent bike.
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Old 04-11-11, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by monsterpile View Post
Omaha has plenty of hills and is far from flat.

I like the look of this bike especially the retro Trek decals on the seat tube. I would worry a bit that its too heavy, but the commuter I am building up right now probably won't be much if any lighter. I like the relaxed geometry alot.
My mistake. It may work quite nicely for the OP.
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Old 04-11-11, 09:32 PM
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another IGH hub would slot right in, but it also has a derailleur hanger if you ever want to go that way.
Suggests a SRAM hybrid 8x3 hub may work too , depending on dropout spread ..

Or a duplex 2 3/32 sprockets for a 2x3 hybrid .
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Old 04-16-11, 01:26 AM
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I picked up the bike today and will work on a more thorough review later in the week as I have only one 10 mile trip on it thus far. Sadly I can already point to a few flaws. The first I noticed was the pedals. They just look and feel cheap. My right pedal creaks and makes clicking noises. It also has a small amount of give when twisting my foot, something a pedal should never do (but is is well secured to the crank so at least it will not fall off).

Another problem is how they ran the wire under the rear fender. The wire is held in place by tabs, but the last several inches of it is left hanging under the fender and catches on the tire. I had it do just that on the way home with it and it pulled the wire out of the light. I repaired it, but can't see a good way to keep the wire under the fender (short of some kind of glue or sticky tape).

Now this next one is personal taste but I feel the lowest gear is not low enough. Climbing even shallow hills is a pain unless you want to stand up. Luckily my local trek store can replace the front gear with a smaller one and that should fix that (as the highest gear is too high as well, I am a slow cyclist).
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