Beating the system - the cycling commuting section
I was in a similar boat, and found it hard to find a bike shop with the right sort of bikes I wanted, but the main thing was all the advice or the in difference shown by the various sale people just wanting to impart some knowledge or ideas... it's quite hard
Then I was watching portlandia the comedy show and did a search for bike shops in portland and came across http://www.joe-bike.com/ .
I e-mailed them a raft of questions, they set me straight on a few things, like why you don't need front suspension on a commuter bike etc answered all my dumb questions. Sent him my measurements, and after some more e-mails managed to get a Norco Ceres belt drive bike with a 11 speed internal hub with the racks, guards etc on the bike. Sent to me via UPS by Price USA which all worked out really well. http://www.priceusa.com.au
As I bought the bike outside the Norco Australian distributer arena here because of a lack of stock "needed a large size" and the $$$ prices, I take my bike to a independent service place who is really great http://qualitybicyclerepairs.com.au so I am very happy.
I have been riding the Ceres for a year now, I have added a Ortlieb Downtown QL3 Bag http://www.ortliebusa.com/prod-368.htm and have a Blink Steady http://www.blinksteady.com on the back which is great as well...
I think it's down to finding a bike you want, I wanted 29inch wheels, belt drive, steady and reliable, no hassles as I was riding to work and needed reliability. I found a business willing to help me answer my questions, was not worried to change or tweek the base bike with extras to suit my needs, and was friendly and helpful.
All this stuff bought online, with little hassle.
Sounds like you've lucked out with the Norco Ceres volks.
Have just checked out Norco's website, and the Ceres isn't listed anymore.
How does it compare to the Indie IGH? http://www.norco.com/bikes/urban/urban- ... indie-igh/
Sorry - i didn't read every single post in this thread. But if you want to ask me what i think is an awesome bike for commuting and touring, most of us know the answer already.
Yes it's a bit more expensive than most will want, but it's worth it IMHO.
I've got a review of last year's model that I bought, here.
Have a peek at the Giant Seek model, it's in your price range and is a comfort commuter bike, it's a hybrid road bike, but it has a relaxed riding position and disc brakes, also has fittings for a pannier and mudguards
This could be one to consider:
http://www.wiggle.com.au/charge-mixer-8 ... tion-2013/
Steel, alfine, disk brakes, rack mounts, pre fitted mudguards.
With a few obvious moves you will get the price low enough to avoid paying the GST on the import.
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