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Suspension fork on longer commutes

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Suspension fork on longer commutes

Old 08-07-11, 02:29 PM
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techman
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Suspension fork on longer commutes

I will be commuting betwen 20-25 miles a day and I am looking for a new bicycle.
I really like the Giant Cypress which comes in 3 configurations

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...st/7354/44066/ (Cypress ST)
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...ss/7354/44064/ (Cypress)
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...er/7354/44065/ (Cypress DX)

several people have warned against a suspension fork (without a lockout) for these type of longer commutes, especially with 10+ pounds of
gear on my back (I prefer using a backpack). The only Cypress with a rigid fork is the ST version which comes with
a heavier steel frame (vs. alloy), a non-adjustable stem, twist shifters (vs. trigger shifters) and Shimano TZ37 14x34 cartridge (vs. SRAM PG820 11x32, 8-Speed).
While the suspension fork on the Cypress and Cypress DX can not be locked out, there is a pre-load adjustment, where I'm wondering
if it could be set to minimize the negative affects of a suspension fork.

I'm not sure how the loss of features will effect my 20-25 miles of round trip commuting and my weekend rides. I prefer a more comfortable ride rather than top speed. My commute is flat and relatively smooth, where a suspension fork
would still be nice for the occasional quick sidewalk detour and hop down a curb.
On weekends, I often take my bike to San Francisco and even other cities where I deal
with serious hills and roads with more irregularities and potholes. All of my riding is on-pavement.

Please share your advice

Last edited by techman; 08-07-11 at 02:36 PM.
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Old 08-07-11, 02:52 PM
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20-25 mile rides are doable on upright bikes with suspension forks, but you'll expend the same amount of energy and go slower in comparison to something like a road bike that places the rider in a more aerodynamic position and is stiffer. You will also have less hand positions (some solve this by using bar ends, or switching to butterfly bars) and suspension forks often do not take fenders quite as 'gracefully', but it's still doable if you are fine with that fact that you will be going a bit slower for the same amount of effort.
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Old 08-07-11, 02:59 PM
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Suspension is a waste of time and money if you don't ride off-road. It is heavy, it costs money to service, and unless it is locked out it absorbs energy that should be propelling you forward. Bunny hopping curbs is perfectly possible on road bikes without suspension, it just takes an hour or two's practice.

And I'm surprised at your preference for a 10lb backpack. Carrying the weight on your back, rather than on the bike, makes one sweaty and tends to give one a bad back on longer journeys. You might like to give panniers or a rack bag a try.
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Old 08-07-11, 03:33 PM
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You can hop curbs and roll through pot holes without suspension. Plenty of people do at least one of those every day. If you're set on getting one of those bikes, then I'd recommend swapping out the fork for a mountain fork without any. It'll save energy and time.
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Old 08-07-11, 03:59 PM
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IMO, suspension is stritcly for off-road riding. If you're on pavement, it's overkill.
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Old 08-07-11, 04:32 PM
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Since your LBS is a Giant dealer, do yourself a favor and check out the Express City. Way better suited for the type of miles you plan on doing. https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-US/...11/6963/43123/
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Old 08-07-11, 04:33 PM
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Steel is stronger than aluminum, good quality steel requires less material.

aluminum needs more.. more metal than the equivalent of steel.

a well designed steel fork is springy , the tip will flex some..
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Old 08-07-11, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
Since your LBS is a Giant dealer, do yourself a favor and check out the Express City. Way better suited for the type of miles you plan on doing. https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-US/...11/6963/43123/
Yeah, that would be a very nice commuter and comes pretty much with everything you need out of the box.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
Since your LBS is a Giant dealer, do yourself a favor and check out the Express City. Way better suited for the type of miles you plan on doing. https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-US/...11/6963/43123/
My local shop has one of these, and it is really a great commuter bike. Not only does it have a better geometry for longer commutes, but it comes with fenders and a rack which both make for a better commuting experience. If your shop doesn't have one, they may be willing to order one for you.

I have done my 27 mile r/t commute on an upright hybrid with suspension fork, and know it is doable. I now do it on a different bike with less upright geometry (and a rigid fork) and find the commute to be less work, especially when climbing hills or in wind.

If you feel you really need a Cypress, I would get the ST. I've tried the Cypress and the Cypress ST, and believe you won't feel that the ST is heavier. The rigid fork will be nicer for long commutes, especially when you need to hammer it to get through an intersection.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:25 PM
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Get a cyclocross bike. Perfect for what you're describing and versatile bikes in general.
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Old 08-07-11, 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by chasm54 View Post
Suspension is a waste of time and money if you don't ride off-road. It is heavy, it costs money to service, and unless it is locked out it absorbs energy that should be propelling you forward. Bunny hopping curbs is perfectly possible on road bikes without suspension, it just takes an hour or two's practice.

And I'm surprised at your preference for a 10lb backpack. Carrying the weight on your back, rather than on the bike, makes one sweaty and tends to give one a bad back on longer journeys. You might like to give panniers or a rack bag a try.
Well said!!!

Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
Since your LBS is a Giant dealer, do yourself a favor and check out the Express City. Way better suited for the type of miles you plan on doing. https://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-US/...11/6963/43123/
Looks good. For a long ride I do like the multiple hand positions of drop bars, but short of that I think this is much more of a fit. The bikes in the OP were too upright for that much riding.

Great advice throughout this thread. At least until this vagary, though in theory I agree with that too:

Originally Posted by Road MTB View Post
Get a cyclocross bike. Perfect for what you're describing and versatile bikes in general.
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Old 08-07-11, 11:31 PM
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Originally Posted by slcbob View Post
Well said!!!



Looks good. For a long ride I do like the multiple hand positions of drop bars, but short of that I think this is much more of a fit. The bikes in the OP were too upright for that much riding.

Great advice throughout this thread. At least until this vagary, though in theory I agree with that too:
good thing i was speaking in theory
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