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Beating the system - the cycling commuting section

Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby ajh003 » Thu Mar 18, 2010 6:00 pm

I've been meaning to take some pickies but but she is quite dirty at the moment....all the rain up our way 600mm plus this month...
Anyway I will get some pictures taken and post over the weekend

I asked a lot of questions.....got some great advice - some comflicting about wherther it was all worth it and then decided to do it it for several reasons

1. Jamis is Cromoly - suits me for commuting for durability
2. I like the bike
3. I have 40 spoke velocity wheels on it - (FROM WHEN I WAS MUCH BIGGER) - great wheels for me - no spoke or truing issues - and I'm not ready to drop to 700 x 23 - 70kms commuting a day is nicer on 28's and 32 rear
4. I could justify the expenditure to my wife
5. I already had Tiagra running gear from my transformation last year


OK costs
CARBON BARS - very happy with the style I chose (GOT EM for abt $85 - Toowoomba EBAY) I only tape the Drop section - the Top bar is flattened for comfort and looks awesome untaped
Tektro R556 Long Reach Road Brake Set, 55-73mm Reach ($40 delivered - USA - EBAY)
CABLES - GERAR and brakes - inners and outers and all the fiddly bits for Tiagra / 105 STI shifters ($25 delivered - USA - EBAY)
SHIFTERS - ok I went cheap on the shifters cos they were on special - ($130 delivered SORA STI - Ribble)
ALmost forgot - NEW STEM for 31.6 bars (abt $25 ribble)- I got an adjustable to trial bar positions a little
Scariest part is setting up the cabling first time
BUT NOW It's a piece of cake

SO there you have it - I have spent just on $300 - plus bar tape
I save that in car costs in a month easily
And .... I love it
But as stated I commute quite a distance each day
One of my major reasons was WIND ! every arvo i head into a SE abt 30 plus knots
Speed gains are noteworthy - 1.5 - 2.5 kph I reckon on average

Wouldn't even bother if I wasn't doing the k's though
There is something nice about also sitting up and having the shifters at your finger tips
But its also great to lean forward drop under the wind and rocket along as I did this morning with a strong wind at my tail at 42 kph on the flat
Thats not very common I might add - for me with panniers etc
Anyways hope this all helps
Jamis CODA SPORT Flat Bar CONVERTED to a DROP BAR for Daily commutes
Giant "Talon" MTB for weekend Trails and "FAMILY" stuff
SW 168.5 kgs CW 111 kgs woohoo !
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by BNA » Thu Mar 18, 2010 8:41 pm

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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Mulger bill » Thu Mar 18, 2010 8:41 pm

rusteh wrote:Hi Shaun, I was looking at the M424s but the reviews I've read say that the clip still digs into your foot and doesn't sit below the cage, my work commute is only 2.5km so I just wear my work shoes, the clipless would be just for weekends and touring. Is there any particular reason you would recommend them over the M324?


Ah, OK then, primary use is work shoes. I humbly withdraw my previous comment. :D Pedal choice is very usage dependent.

Shaun
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Fletcher » Fri Mar 26, 2010 4:53 pm

Image

My Ribble Winter Bike. I've been riding this for a month now. It's a weapon, I love it. 105 down to the hubs. Mavic Open Pro rims, and has a different saddle to the one in the pic. It now has a Charge Knife.
Last edited by Fletcher on Fri Jun 11, 2010 10:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Aushiker » Fri Mar 26, 2010 5:04 pm

Fletcher wrote:Image

My Ribble Winter Bike. I've been riding this for a month now. It's a weapon, I love it. 105 down to the hubs. Mavic Open Pro rims, and I've now changed the saddle to a Charge Knife.

Edit: it's a 2008 model, which I bought off a Zimbabwean who commuted on it for some months in London then brought it over here on his company's dime, then had no need for it. Lucky me!


Hi

Thanks for sharing this. I keep going back and looking at these. A serious option for me once the finances are sorted. Did you get it as frame or a complete build?

Andrew
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Fletcher » Fri Mar 26, 2010 6:04 pm

^Thanks Andrew, I bought it slightly used, as is. I'd been admiring them for a couple of months, and was surprised to see one for sale here in Oz. I had to drive to Sydney for it, which was a hassle, but totally worth it. The guy I bought it off purchased it as a complete build. He ordered top spec on most of it.

Edit: I believe the matte black option is no longer available. You can now have any colour so long as it's blue.
Last edited by Fletcher on Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Aushiker » Fri Mar 26, 2010 9:36 pm

Fletcher wrote:Edit: I believe the matte black option is no longer available. You can now have any colour so long as it's blue.


Hi

Yes, blue or blue. So it is the Audax winter frame then. Good to get the feedback on it.

Andrew
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Red Hornet » Thu May 06, 2010 9:04 pm

Hi all,
Hope you can help me again. Following a service on my Malvern Star Vendetta, I've decided its wiser to buy a new bike instead of forking out on parts and retire the old one and invest in a new bike for mainly commuting purposes. I don't want to spend more than $500 and was hoping that you may be able to recommend a bike that fits my criteria. i.e. a bike like my old one maybe a bit lighter than can cope with with the commute and is quite sturdy. I've done some research on what is on offer at the moment and the bikes below are under $500 in Brisbane. As a relative novice to the bike scene I hope someone can guide me in the right direction.

Fuji Sunfire 3.0 Hybrid Bike
Trek 7.0 FX
Avanti 1.0 Discovery
Norco Vermont
Trek 7.1 FX
Giant Trailguide or Cypress

Hope you can help. Its appreciated.

Thanks,
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Kneedown » Wed May 12, 2010 12:20 am

This is my commuter...

Image

2007 Avanti Blade Sport with the following upgrades;
- Syntace Aero Bars
- Shimano PDR-540 Pedals
- Ritchey Pro Seat Post
- Carbon Titanium Saddle (off eBay which has neither Carbon nor Titanium!)
- Michelin Speedium2 700x23 Tyres
- BBB Saddle Bag
- Bottle, Pump, Lights

This bike has been great over the last 2½ years as a first step to road cycling. Does the job for now, but I am getting a bit tired of the 3x8 gearing and would like a proper road bike soon! :)
Last edited by Kneedown on Wed May 12, 2010 11:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Avanti Blade Sport for not so sunny days
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Pax » Wed May 12, 2010 6:14 am

Kneedown wrote:This is my commuter...

2007 Avanti Blade Sport with the following upgrades;
- Syntace Aero Bars


It is great to see a MTB with aero bars :lol: ...I had them on my previous commuter (MTB). Some peolple gave me Showtime about them but I had a few long downhills and flats and used to enjoy getting down on them. DIdn't transfer them across when I changed to my current commuter though as in the end I decided that i didn't use them enough to justify them.

Do you use your's much?
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Kneedown » Wed May 12, 2010 11:46 am

I use the aero bars all the time. If you live south of the river in Perth, you have to battle a 25-30 knot headwinds most afternoons on the way home and being able to tuck in is a great help. I almost prefer riding on the aero bars as I can sit right back in the saddle and get the power down easy.

BTW, the Avanti Blade is not a MTB, it's a flat bar road bike. :wink:
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby YoungPodge » Wed May 26, 2010 2:56 pm

Aahhhh, lots of very nice commuters. Even our day to day working bikes are lovely to look upon and lovelier to ride!
For me the run to work is done on either a Kona Paddy Wagon single speed - steel frame and 28mm tires; or an older Schwinn roadie - aluminium alloy frame, carbon forks, skinny tires and 9 speed (for when I feel lazy on the hills....)
Mulger Bill, I like the tweaked Due Drop - give me a steel frame, disk brakes, hub dynamo lights and a Rohloff on the back, and I'm thinking perfect commuter. Rack mounts and mudgards (which neither of my current regular rides have) to finish the picture.
Any thoughts on a suitably tweaked Kona Sutra to fit that spec?
Why am I wasting perfectly good riding time sitting in front of a computer?
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby owlrigh » Wed May 26, 2010 6:14 pm

My commuter/'car'/workhorse:

Image

Cannondale Touring 2, frame size small, and the rear rack's the one which came with the bike.

Changes:
• SKS Chromoplastic mudguards
• Shimano SPD pedals (A530)
• Salsa dropbars (narrower than the original bars)
• Terry Ti Butterfly saddle
• 2xArundel Carbon sideloader cages, in left and right (side-loading because regular loading don't have enough clearance in the frame

For lighting I'm using one of those wide red flashing sorts from Kmart (brilliant), and Ay Up for the front because the roads are so horrendous around here and I work at night.

When I was first using her as a commuter in Ballina (NSW), where it's flat, I was getting a bit bored with her granny gear, but now that I've moved to the hilly southside of Brisbane she's awesome. Doing the hills is a piece of cake. Brisbane roads are a lot bumpier than where I was down south, and padded gloves are indispensable!
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Spork! » Wed May 26, 2010 7:34 pm

owlrigh wrote:My commuter/'car'/workhorse:

Image

Cannondale Touring 2, frame size small, and the rear rack's the one which came with the bike.

Changes:
• SKS Chromoplastic mudguards
• Shimano SPD pedals (A530)
• Salsa dropbars (narrower than the original bars)
• Terry Ti Butterfly saddle
• 2xArundel Carbon sideloader cages, in left and right (side-loading because regular loading don't have enough clearance in the frame

For lighting I'm using one of those wide red flashing sorts from Kmart (brilliant), and Ay Up for the front because the roads are so horrendous around here and I work at night.

When I was first using her as a commuter in Ballina (NSW), where it's flat, I was getting a bit bored with her granny gear, but now that I've moved to the hilly southside of Brisbane she's awesome. Doing the hills is a piece of cake. Brisbane roads are a lot bumpier than where I was down south, and padded gloves are indispensable!



Nice bike. How visible is your rear light? Can/do you mount it on the back of the rack when the rack is loaded?
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby owlrigh » Wed May 26, 2010 8:07 pm

Spork! wrote:Nice bike. How visible is your rear light? Can/do you mount it on the back of the rack when the rack is loaded?


The red thing you can see on the back of the seatpost is actually the reflector, required as per Qld road rules. It's probably not very visible from where it is, but! I can point at it if needed. The red light gets put on the rear of the rack; I screwed the attachment system to the available holes and pop the light into it when dark. It's angled up a bit as well so it's not entirely parallel to the road and so more noticeable to those driving.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby hartleymartin » Sun May 30, 2010 5:32 pm

owlrigh wrote:My commuter/'car'/workhorse:

Image

Cannondale Touring 2, frame size small, and the rear rack's the one which came with the bike.

Changes:
• SKS Chromoplastic mudguards
• Shimano SPD pedals (A530)
• Salsa dropbars (narrower than the original bars)
• Terry Ti Butterfly saddle
• 2xArundel Carbon sideloader cages, in left and right (side-loading because regular loading don't have enough clearance in the frame

For lighting I'm using one of those wide red flashing sorts from Kmart (brilliant), and Ay Up for the front because the roads are so horrendous around here and I work at night.

When I was first using her as a commuter in Ballina (NSW), where it's flat, I was getting a bit bored with her granny gear, but now that I've moved to the hilly southside of Brisbane she's awesome. Doing the hills is a piece of cake. Brisbane roads are a lot bumpier than where I was down south, and padded gloves are indispensable!


A bicycle used as transport not just sport.
Martin Christopher Hartley

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http://madmartysblog.blogspot.com - my cycling adventures
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby owlrigh » Sun May 30, 2010 11:26 pm

hartleymartin wrote:
owlrigh wrote:My commuter/'car'/workhorse:
-snip-


A bicycle used as transport not just sport.


Not quite certain what you're saying, here.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby hartleymartin » Mon May 31, 2010 2:40 am

owlrigh wrote:
hartleymartin wrote:
owlrigh wrote:My commuter/'car'/workhorse:
-snip-


A bicycle used as transport not just sport.


Not quite certain what you're saying, here.


Sorry, I have been rather vague. I meant to say that I like it, because it's an example where the bicycle has been taken seriously as a form of personal transport and is not just another toy or item of sports equipment.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby owlrigh » Mon May 31, 2010 2:29 pm

hartleymartin wrote:Sorry, I have been rather vague. I meant to say that I like it, because it's an example where the bicycle has been taken seriously as a form of personal transport and is not just another toy or item of sports equipment.


My bike is definitely indispensable to me! I wouldn't want to imagine what a pain in the rear end it would be not to have one to get about with. I've never had a car, so wouldn't know how that is, but a bicycle's the minimum people need in their every day life, IMHO. I keep trying to convince people of this, but it never quite works ... even my housemate, who's never driven her whole life, can't be convinced that a bicycle would make her life easier in, say, buying groceries. I think the hills daunt her. Ah, well.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby hartleymartin » Mon May 31, 2010 8:54 pm

The first hill is always the worst one.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Spork! » Mon May 31, 2010 9:06 pm

The first up is the steepest, baby I know
the first up is the steepest...

(apologies to Cat Stevens) :roll:
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Fletcher » Fri Jun 11, 2010 9:49 pm

owlrigh wrote:
hartleymartin wrote:Sorry, I have been rather vague. I meant to say that I like it, because it's an example where the bicycle has been taken seriously as a form of personal transport and is not just another toy or item of sports equipment.


My bike is definitely indispensable to me! I wouldn't want to imagine what a pain in the rear end it would be not to have one to get about with. I've never had a car, so wouldn't know how that is, but a bicycle's the minimum people need in their every day life, IMHO. I keep trying to convince people of this, but it never quite works ... even my housemate, who's never driven her whole life, can't be convinced that a bicycle would make her life easier in, say, buying groceries. I think the hills daunt her. Ah, well.


Well done that's a fine bike.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby owlrigh » Tue Jun 15, 2010 1:00 am

Fletcher wrote:
owlrigh wrote:My bike is definitely indispensable to me! I wouldn't want to imagine what a pain in the rear end it would be not to have one to get about with. I've never had a car, so wouldn't know how that is, but a bicycle's the minimum people need in their every day life, IMHO. I keep trying to convince people of this, but it never quite works ... even my housemate, who's never driven her whole life, can't be convinced that a bicycle would make her life easier in, say, buying groceries. I think the hills daunt her. Ah, well.


Well done that's a fine bike.


Thank you :)
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Rek » Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:10 pm

I managed to build what I'd consider to be my ideal commuting bike:
Image

Frame: Kinesis Tripster
Shifters: SRAM Rival
FD: SRAM Force
RD: SRAM Rival
Cranks: Shimano R600 (compact)
Cassette: Shimano 105 (5700)
Hubs: Shimano SLX (M529, 29er 6-bolt)
Rims: Mavic OP
Bars: Ritchey Logic 2 Comp
Stem: Ritchey 4-Axis 44 Pro
Brakes: Avid BB7 Road (160mm G2CS front rotor, 140mm Roundagon rear)
Tyres: Continental G4000 25mm

After taking it out to Yarra Boulevard I fitted my rack, fenders (SKS Bluemels) and lights, I'll get another photo sometime. Also changed the saddle to my more comfortable Charge Spoon.

The only part I would change is the hubs - SLX is meant for all-mountain use, so they're much heavier than I need. They've got huge undrilled flanges that aren't doing much on a bike like this. The wet white version of the stem would be nice too, but I'm not paying 3x as much just for a marginally better colour. Due to the road crank/MTB hub mismatch the chainline is also badly whacked, but it works out - big-big isn't really cross-chaining, but trying to use the small chainring past the 6th or 7th cog causes the chain to rub.

Originally I wanted to use a Kona Honky Inc frame, but I only ever saw one on ebay and it was gone by the time I wanted to build the bike. This was the best looking road disc frame I could find (and the only other non-compact one afaik), so it's what I ended up buying.
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Runjikol » Sun Jul 18, 2010 4:34 pm

Very nice work! :D
What kind of forks?
How does it ride?
How much did you spend?


(Colour scheme is a bit off for my taste but that matters little)
--Current rides: Cannondale Bad Boy 8 || Surly Big Dummy || Dahon Dash P-18
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Re: Great Commuter Bikes

Postby Rek » Sun Jul 18, 2010 9:11 pm

Image
The fenders were a nuisance to put on and are still giving me trouble. I think the rear stays needs to be cut down a few mm.

Runjikol: The fork is the Kinesis DC19 that came with the frame. The UK site says the legs are carbon, the Taiwan site says it's carbon wrap. Either way they feel very sturdy.

The ride is nice and stiff. It's a huge improvement over my previous commuting bike, an old steel Malvern Star. I wanted lower gearing, wider bars (the MS has 38cm) and a frame that wouldn't wobble around with the rack attached. This bike succeeds at all three.

Total cost was a little under $2100 excluding rack, saddle and pedals.

I wasn't too sure about the yellow bar tape, it actually looks better than I expected. White would go well with this frame but it gets messy too easily, even the yellow is starting to darken slightly after a week. I'll try to find something more suitable when I replace it.
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