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For casual road touring, long distance road riding, and commuting ?

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For casual road touring, long distance road riding, and commuting ?

Old 04-01-18, 07:41 PM
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pakeboi
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For casual road touring, long distance road riding, and commuting ?

For casual road touring, long distance road riding, and commuting ?
Looking to do all three with one bike .
Appreciate any brand or specific bikes to look at .

Last edited by pakeboi; 04-01-18 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 04-01-18, 10:06 PM
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I like my touring bike for all 3. In my family we have 4 touring bikes; a Bruce Gordon, a Co-motion, a 1990 Trek 520, and a Surly LHT. They all work good. If you think a touring bike would work for you, then there are lots of good reviews on the web. For instance I did a google search using "touring bicycles" as the search term and came us with this review: https://www.cyclingabout.com/best-touring-bikes-list/

Others may chime in that the new breed of "adventure" or "gravel" bikes, or cyclocross bikes would work best. And maybe they do for some people. I just find that being able to mount racks and fenders is useful, and lots of "race" inspired bikes don't have braze-ons to do this. Good luck making a decision as there a lot of bikes to chose from. Also, depends on you budget.
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Old 04-01-18, 10:11 PM
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I recently purchased an All City Space Horse (the older canti model) for all-purpose riding and am really enjoying it. The newer disc model also looks great.
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Old 04-02-18, 01:49 AM
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Personally, I’d go with something a little more “aggressive”, which isn’t aggressive at all, than a dedicated touring bike. You can tour just great and very comfortably on something with a little better handling than a LHT or Trek 520, for example. However, your “for fun” long day rides and your commute will be more fun, the bike feel more natural, and handle better on something less sluggish than a touring bike. If you don’t mind driving a semi(long haul trucker...) around as your daily driver then I’d say just get a dedicated touring bike.
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Old 04-02-18, 02:52 AM
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Thanks for the reply ; You have a point .
But I do prefer an upright , or more upright riding position .
Can you suggest something with a bit relaxed compact geometry but not a dedicated touring bike ?
Maybe even with some light off road ability .
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Old 04-02-18, 07:05 AM
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You're probably going to get a rehash of everyone's personal bike.

In that sense, may as well go for the Co-Op ADV 3.1. Other than I want to, I don't really see a need to own another bike for anything but MTB-type riding.
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Old 04-02-18, 10:02 AM
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If you're talking about racks-and-panniers loaded touring, vice ultra-light bikepacking, you'll want rack mounts, probably front and rear. Rear racks, at least, are a good thing to have for commuting. You might find a few bikes with both front and rear mounts that aren't classical touring bikes, but I suspect those will be a challenge to find.


Long distance rides are a lot like touring but without much of a load. Without panniers, your speed will naturally be 2-4 mph higher.


If you want something that will accelerate a little bit faster, you might consider getting either a spare set of wheels, or just lighter tires for a tourer. Put some lightweight 28s on a bike that normally rides on 35s, and it'll feel a lot sportier.
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Old 04-02-18, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by pakeboi View Post
For casual road touring, long distance road riding, and commuting ?
Looking to do all three with one bike .
Appreciate any brand or specific bikes to look at .
Rather than frame the question as you have I would take some time to consider it from some different angles.

First; For all activities how much weight do you want to haul around. That has far more bearing on the choice of bike than distance IMO. One bike can do light and heavy loaded touring with compromise but the question is, do you need the compromise.

Second; What sort of road surfaces? Having a bike that can do pavement is different than one that can do single track, though one bike can be made to do both with compromise. The question is, do you need the compromise.

Lastly, but perhaps most important; What is the theft risk for commuting. If you can secure a bike well no problem but if you need to lock it up outside out of sight for long periods that will dictate what bike to buy more than any other factor.


Now, just for consideration. Below is my 1991 rigid frame Chromoly mtb that I rebuilt for touring. It's just beater enough to commute with if I strip all the extras off and ugly it up, able to do non technical off road single track and able to carry a heavy load. A good all rounder. Ok with the right tires but not the fastest on the road.





This is my faster road bike for long distances. Good relaxed long distance geometry, Easy to ride and fast enough. However not so good off road or with heavy loads - and I wouldn't lock it up at the local bike rack all day so no good for unguarded commuting.



And my winter commuter. Say what one will about aesthetics.. it goes fairly well, cost $100 to rebuild, and I can lock it up (after pulling the seat and post to take with me).




So, If I could only have one I might have to compromise on speed by choosing one or three, carrying capacity with two and three, off road ability with one or three, worry about theft more with one or two.
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Old 04-02-18, 10:44 AM
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pakeboi: As someone who, in the past, has totally overthought a lot of buying decisions when it comes to bicycles and accessories, may I suggest that you, too, might be overthinking?

I bought my GT Outpost in 1996 knowing almost nothing about "modern" bikes after about 16 years of not riding. The guy in the shop asked what type of riding I wanted to do and I told him mountain biking and maybe some rail trails. He measured my inseam and put me on the Outpost. It felt "fine," so I bought it for $300 (a lot of money for me at that time).

Since then, I have used it for (what used to be known as) "technical" mountain biking, rail trails and bike paths, overnight trips, multi-day trips, and daily commuting to work, never once regretting that I didn't own a different bike.

My point is that there is no magic answer to your question, especially since there are so many variables in even the few types of riding you mentioned you'd like to do. For me, a classic steel, hard-tail (no shocks) mountain bike has served all my purposes well and I hope this bike lasts me the rest of my life. It can be easily modified with different tires and various types of racks and bags to ride comfortably on the road, on gravel, on dirt, to the next town, to the next state, or to my job. I don't think "road" bikes are quite as flexible, but the next poster in this thread will likely disagree.

You need to get yourself down to a good bike shop, find a knowledgeable sales rep, and try a few bikes for yourself. In your lifetime (or your cycling lifetime), this option may not be around for a long time, as everyone seems to be rushing to buy bikes, unseen, online. When you find the right bike, you will know it. After that, treat it like your baby and it will bring you decades of pleasure. Good luck!
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Old 04-02-18, 12:18 PM
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Better question, drop bars or flat bars? Start there.
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Old 04-02-18, 12:49 PM
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For long distance road, gravel, commuting, and light touring, hard to beat the Surly Straggler for value. Very versatile and comfortable bike, equipped with decent components (that are relatively easy to swap out if you want to change your gear ratios for touring).
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Old 04-02-18, 12:53 PM
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get a gravel bike that is lightweight and that has tubeless ready rims, hydraulic dics brakes, thru axles, and that can take wide tyres, and that can take a rack and fenders
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Old 04-02-18, 02:35 PM
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I can't say enough good words about Vivente. It is an Australian brand but they post world wide.. Small company run by someone who tours alot!!!

Bear
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Old 04-02-18, 06:17 PM
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pakeboi
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Originally Posted by dim View Post
get a gravel bike that is lightweight and that has tubeless ready rims, hydraulic dics brakes, thru axles, and that can take wide tyres, and that can take a rack and fenders
Thanks .
This is the direction I'm going .
Are there any in particular that you like ?

I would prefer an upright riding position , but I'm open .
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Old 04-03-18, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by pakeboi View Post
For casual road touring, long distance road riding, and commuting ?
Looking to do all three with one bike .
Appreciate any brand or specific bikes to look at .
Also consider the Bianchi Volpe. It's a jack-of-all-trades bike for the purposes you've listed. I've had two and was always impressed with the service I got out of them.
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Old 04-03-18, 08:26 AM
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https://dirtragmag.com/surlys-new-bridge-club-bridges-gap-between-dirt-and-road-touring/

https://surlybikes.com/bikes/bridge_club

This just showed up in my email today. Maybe not what you are looking for, but interesting none the less.

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Old 04-03-18, 08:45 AM
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what jefnvk said. Your question is really openended when “ more upright position” can mean different things for different people. To me you at first you are describing a sport touring bike with bars at seat height for an experienced cyclist without a big gut. I have a big gut now and a more upright position is an inch higher than the seat.
A lot of bikes that fit your intended use are fairly responsive and designed for a riding position that puts some weight on the bars. If you put a moderate rear load on them and raise the handle bars the more upright position makes for a whippy and not too pleasant handling in which case I’d recommend front low riders with that style of bike.
Another reason your question is so open ended is that your height and weight will skew your choices in one direction or another. Front wheel toe overlap might be an issue in your frame size in which case smaller wheels are recommended. If you’re heavy the ability to carry fatter tires will make a huge difference on “gravel”.

best suggestion I could give is go test them and pick a bike for 80% of your use and don’t get hung up finding a bike that will do 10% of your use as well as the 80%.

Most of my touring was done on the bike I rode on most of the time which was a road racing bike with an ultralight load. I don’t tour much anymore but the bike I ride on daily for commuting is a 26” wheel Surly LHT with front rack mounted panniers that can carry a ton besides my excess tonnage.

Last edited by LeeG; 04-03-18 at 08:49 AM.
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Old 04-03-18, 10:57 AM
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How many times is this question, by the same OP going to be asked?
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Old 04-03-18, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
How many times is this question, by the same OP going to be asked?
wasn’t aware he had asked before. Either way test rides provide a good starting point to get useful feedback as the persons impressions of a particular bike gives some useful insight into their preferences.
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Old 04-05-18, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
How many times is this question, by the same OP going to be asked?
OMG, this is rich.

Let's see now...pakeboi has been on the forum almost 10 years now and has about 130 posts. fietsbob has been on the forum almost 8 years now and has about 32 THOUSAND posts.

Bobby Boy, this is what's known as ludicrous. Take a break from making snarky posts and look it up.
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Old 04-05-18, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Eggman84 View Post
I like my touring bike for all 3. In my family we have 4 touring bikes; a Bruce Gordon, a Co-motion, a 1990 Trek 520, and a Surly LHT. They all work good. If you think a touring bike would work for you, then there are lots of good reviews on the web. For instance I did a google search using "touring bicycles" as the search term and came us with this review: https://www.cyclingabout.com/best-touring-bikes-list/

Others may chime in that the new breed of "adventure" or "gravel" bikes, or cyclocross bikes would work best. And maybe they do for some people. I just find that being able to mount racks and fenders is useful, and lots of "race" inspired bikes don't have braze-ons to do this. Good luck making a decision as there a lot of bikes to chose from. Also, depends on you budget.
I like your family! I want a Bruce Gordon in my family to go along with my Co-Motion granted my family is just me and several bikes but Bruce would always be welcome.

@OP
Touring bikes can make excellent all-round bikes and if you aren't looking for speed and weight isn't a huge factor (or you are willing to spend a little cash to help cut down the weight) you can really make out well. If I absolutely had to go down to one bike, I would probably continue beating my head till it cracked open and then let zombies feast on the insides because I don't want one bike...But my Co-Motion Cascadia aka the Wagon Queen Family Truckster would be a top contender. It is a joy to ride, can handle just about any load and feels great. I have ridden it touring, commuting and even longer road rides. Plus it is about 3-4 pounds lighter than my old Surly Disc Trucker which is kind of nice.
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Old 04-06-18, 05:39 AM
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What’s the budget, and the good point someone else brought up, flat or drop bars? Do you plan to do any “spirited” riding or just a casual pace? At this point I feel like we probably have a good enough idea to recommend something with those answers. If you’re mechanically inclinded, I’d lean toward recommending an old mtb conversion(flat or drop) or the newer termed gravel bike(if drop bars). Only lots of reading can answer the question for you of which one.
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Old 04-06-18, 05:55 AM
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Originally Posted by 3speed View Post
What’s the budget, and the good point someone else brought up, flat or drop bars? Do you plan to do any “spirited” riding or just a casual pace? At this point I feel like we probably have a good enough idea to recommend something with those answers. If you’re mechanically inclinded, I’d lean toward recommending an old mtb conversion(flat or drop) or the newer termed gravel bike(if drop bars). Only lots of reading can answer the question for you of which one.
Agree and if you dont mind used and have the space then you can get a gravel and road bike. One can be upright position and the other more aggressive with drop bars for faster road rides. I like vintage steel as do many in this forum. This combo can be obtained for cheap and will last you decades more
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Old 04-06-18, 06:14 AM
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Nice 80s steel is a Beautiful thing for a road bike(I had one old steel touring and found it flexed too much for my liking), and can be found for cheap with some patience once you read a lot and learn the frames to look for. ...Now I miss my old Miyata 914 with full “modern” 9sp Dura-Ace build. That bike was a pure joy to ride, even being a size too big for me.

OP, if you enjoy spirited rides, get yourself a kinda beat up ugly looking, but actually pretty nice late 80s race bike to get to work on and do fun ride days under 30mi, and a touring/grocery getter for touring, groceries, and long ride days. That would be a wonderful combo. You can probably even find a race bike with eyelets for a rack and it will be a fun work commuter. I think my Miyata 914 had fender/rack eyelets, but was the exact same geometry and tubing as the Miyata Team(their top tier full on race bike).
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Old 04-06-18, 06:24 AM
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echoing some of the previous posts I came across this while searching the net :
"...the best candidate for an on-road/gravel touring bike is a 90’s rigid mountain bike. At this point, bicycle were built for general use, rather than anything specialised & subsequently will take almost anything you chuck at it. Properly equipped, this would be the bicycle you want to take with you to Timbuktu - commonly available parts, easily field serviceable, & plenty tough, having only the parts that need to move as moving parts."
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