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Which bike for riding in the rain?

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Which bike for riding in the rain?

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Old 11-03-14, 11:46 PM
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raguvian
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Which bike for riding in the rain?

I've been commuting for the past month in Houston on a Kilo TT, and this past weekend I picked up another bike for commuting - a Salsa Ala Carte that I've put a rack and panniers on. Since both bikes are steel, I was wondering which one I should ride in the rain? I would rather ride the Kilo TT since I wouldn't care as much if it started rusting (bought it scratch and dent from bikeisland), and it's a single speed so I think it'd be better suited to getting wet (maybe?). However, I don't know if it's a great idea with the skinny 23c tires and track geometry, especially in the rain. If I do decide to use the Kilo for commuting in the rain, I'd get a rack for that too and swap the panniers over whenever it rains.

I got the Salsa to be my beater bike, but it's way too nice to beat up IMO. Which one would you use in the rain?

Thanks

Here are some pics:



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Old 11-03-14, 11:51 PM
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LesterOfPuppets
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Salsa fork won't hold up as well in the rain.

It looks kinda like too much travel for that bike, too.
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Old 11-04-14, 03:22 AM
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MichaelW
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A UK winter road bike would have 28mm tyres, full length fenders. Often you can fit a rack.
Transmission options are up to you. Old style Horizontal dropouts permit any style of Transmission
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Old 11-04-14, 04:23 AM
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Top, but add fender?

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Old 11-04-14, 05:59 AM
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I ride single speed year round in the UK which has a lot of rain ... most current photo:



just about to hit 3000km on it this week.
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Old 11-04-14, 07:45 AM
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I would choose the single speed but with wider tires. If your commute is on city streets the wear and tear with narrow tires in the rain would not be so enjoyable.
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Old 11-04-14, 08:02 AM
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Rain doesn't damage a bike as long as you keep it clean and lubricated. Single speeds are fine for commuting esp. in a city as flat as Houston. Neither bike, though, is optimal for commuting. MTBs can make pretty decent commuters once you add slicks, fenders, etc. but a suspension fork isn't great for commuting. The Kilo probably won't take a fat tire and fender.

It's N + 1 time. Houston has a good CL. Find a vintage road bike with center pulls or long reach side pulls. Then you can fit a 700 x 28c and fenders. You can ride it geared or single speed/fixed. Plus you won't care what the paint job looks like within reason as long as you can make the bike mechanically sound.
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Old 11-04-14, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
Rain doesn't damage a bike as long as you keep it clean and lubricated. Single speeds are fine for commuting esp. in a city as flat as Houston. Neither bike, though, is optimal for commuting. MTBs can make pretty decent commuters once you add slicks, fenders, etc. but a suspension fork isn't great for commuting. The Kilo probably won't take a fat tire and fender.

It's N + 1 time. Houston has a good CL. Find a vintage road bike with center pulls or long reach side pulls. Then you can fit a 700 x 28c and fenders. You can ride it geared or single speed/fixed. Plus you won't care what the paint job looks like within reason as long as you can make the bike mechanically sound.
Rain is not nearly as destructive as people think to bikes as long as you keep things clean and lubed. It does accelerate wear but not nearly as bad as road salt.

I personally would ride the Kilo and add fenders if at all possible.

For tires I really like the 700x28 Panaracer Gravel Kings, it grips well in the wet, rolls as good as a race tire and despite all the glass/thorns we have on our bike paths here I have yet to get a flat with mine. Panaracer: Professional Bike Tires from Panasonic | Road
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Old 11-04-14, 08:49 AM
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I think the Kilo would be best, especially if you can add fenders. But a little water won't hurt your bike either way.
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Old 11-05-14, 07:23 AM
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raguvian
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Thanks for the replies! I'm mainly worried about water getting inside the frame and rusting it from the inside out. Is that not really a problem?

Also, I don't know if the Kilo will take a wider tire:



Maybe with a longer chain I can get a fatter tire in there?
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Old 11-05-14, 09:28 AM
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Get some Boeshield and spray it in any openings in the frame to prevent any interior oxidation.
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Old 11-05-14, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by raguvian View Post
Maybe with a longer chain I can get a fatter tire in there?
I'm rocking 25s on my Kilo with the SKS Raceblade fenders. I'm fairly certain 28s would not fit with the fenders.
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