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Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    somewhere between the Red & Rio Grande
    Posts
    5,310

    Hybrid Commuting

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    I have a predicament... We moved where there is great cycling BUT it is 25 miles from work. I am filling up 2x a week which is a financial pain, bad for the environment and putting a lot of miles on my car. I am considering the ultimate in multi-method commuting. Drive to the bus pick up (6 miles), ride bus, ride bike from bus let off to work (2-3 miles).

    I can't ride to the bus center because there is no safe route. Would a mountain bike be an easy enough ride for 2-3 miles. It would be bike lanes on busy roads. I go in at 7:00 in the morning so I will be fortunate to miss much traffic but need lights.

    Here's what I need to know:
    1. Good lights
    2. How to stay unsweaty (no showers at work)
    3. Good lock, no rack at work. Although I have a big enough cubicle to put my bike.
    Amanda

    2011 Specialized Epic Comp 29er | Specialized Phenom | "Marie Laveau"
    2007 Cannondale Synapse Carbon Road | Selle Italia Lady Gel Flow | "Miranda"


    You don't have to be great to get started, but you do have to get started to be great. -Lee J. Colan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    California
    Posts
    94
    Good light source - I'm partial to Dinotte

    http://www.geomangear.com/

    My co-workers with short commutes ride their mountain bikes.

    Can you lock a bike on a bus rack? My ride in to work is great, but I've been thinking of taking the bus home 'cause it's been 100 degrees for the evening commute (too hot for me) !

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    3,135

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    ANY bike would be good enough for your 3 mile commute!

    If it's flat, you're not going to get sweaty unless you really push yourself.
    I think a hybrid is a great idea.
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    somewhere between the Red & Rio Grande
    Posts
    5,310
    Mimi- I already have a Scott Hardtail Mountain bike. Unless I can find a steal on Craigslist I am not wanting to buy a new bike and NO WAY is my Cannondale going on the front of a Capital Metro Bus!

    My CFO is very exercise encouraging, so I am sure I can store my bike at the office somewhere. The commute from the bus place is definitely flat, so I can take it easy. Off to research bus fares.
    Last edited by Aggie_Ama; 06-16-2007 at 03:37 AM.
    Amanda

    2011 Specialized Epic Comp 29er | Specialized Phenom | "Marie Laveau"
    2007 Cannondale Synapse Carbon Road | Selle Italia Lady Gel Flow | "Miranda"


    You don't have to be great to get started, but you do have to get started to be great. -Lee J. Colan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,101
    It's pretty easy to deal with the no showers. I showered at home and then I just brought my face soap (Cetaphil), hair gel, a towel, and deoderant and kept it at work, along with a brush. I used the regular soap from the rest room sink and washed the pits and anyplace else that felt sweaty. I washed my face and completely wet my hair (it's short) and slid some gel on it. Then I did my make up. The whole thing took about 10 minutes. If I planned on commuting in 2 days a week, i would bring all of my clothes on Monday and my lunches.
    So, it takes some planning, but it's very doable.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Columbia, MO
    Posts
    2,051
    Mountain bike is fine, eventually you could put hybrid tires on it but try it for a while first.

    Your bike is probably safer in your cubicle than it would be in a bike rack anyway. Certainly less exposed to the elements.

    Shower: Everyone has their own routine, but the one trick I discovered that makes a big difference is wait about 10 minutes before changing. If I change right away, I continue to sweat a while. Some days, if I don't have an important meeting, I don't change, since I just wear regular jeans or shorts & a tshirt, not a biking outfit.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    317
    My utility bike is a mountain bike, which I'm grateful for every time I hit the potholes on the way home from the grocery store. The only reason I'm not doing longer trips than 6 miles right now are my saddle woes. So yes, 3 miles on a mountain bike is very doable. I've done around 12 on mine, and would like to be able to do 16 mile trips reliably (Target and REI are about 8 miles from home for me). I can't stay totally unsweaty on a typical run of errands right now, because we've been running high 80s and high humidity. When it's less humid, if I want to be less sweaty I just ride less aggressively. Lower gears, no racing myself. Some of it is conditioning tho. The better shape I'm in, the less I overheat.

    Depending on your usual distances and local road conditions, you may be able to ditch the car entirely. Use your judgment tho. If 3 miles feels like a long ride to you, planning on an 18 mile day is not smart. And if the best way to the bus stop involves dangerous traffic, go for safety.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Belle, Mo.
    Posts
    1,780
    I've noticed that there are quite a few older Specialized Rockhoppers and Raleigh M30s and such on Craigslist. They are from the 90s and 80s and usually list for around $60. The best part is that they don't have any suspension, which you don't need on a commute. Some slick tires and you would have a bike that wouldn't be a big deal if it got scratches, or should I say any more scratches?
    Claudia

    2009 Trek 7.6fx
    2013 Jamis Satellite
    2014 Terry Burlington

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Columbia, MO
    Posts
    2,051
    Quote Originally Posted by Torrilin View Post
    And if the best way to the bus stop involves dangerous traffic, go for safety.
    Or take the League of American Bicyclists' Road I course and learn the skills you need to comfortably handle that traffic! http://www.bikeleague.org

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,975
    Quote Originally Posted by uforgot View Post
    I've noticed that there are quite a few older Specialized Rockhoppers and Raleigh M30s and such on Craigslist. They are from the 90s and 80s and usually list for around $60. The best part is that they don't have any suspension, which you don't need on a commute. Some slick tires and you would have a bike that wouldn't be a big deal if it got scratches, or should I say any more scratches?
    I have a 1985-6 GT Outpost Trail as my commuter. No suspension, don't need it, don't want it on a commuter.

    I upgraded the wheels. If scratches get beyond being able to paint them with touch up paint, fingernail polish .... you powdercoat the bike! I'm doing that now and it's going to be like a new bike.
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    276
    I live only a few miles from work so my commute is 3 miles one way. I have an old heavy mountian bike and it works fine. I do have 3 different styles of bags I can put on it depending on weather and what I have to take with me. Hybrid is probably a great choice, but like it was said earlier, whatever bike you take will do just fine. I also agree with not locking your bike outside. We have racks outside on a patio and bikes get stolen from there. I'm lucky enough to have a bike locker otherwise I would put my bike in my cube.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    326
    I ride a Kona Fire Mountain to and from work, 10 miles each way. It's a pretty hilly ride and the bike is great for the commute, even with front suspension (there's the added benefit that I can take it on that nice singletrack on the way home ). I started by taking the bus part way on the ride in...

    I keep my bike in my cube so I don't have to worry about theft/weather damage on the rack and that has the added bonus of being a conversation piece. Lots more of my coworkers ride bikes than I realized, sometimes they even bring them by to say hello when they ride in. Very cool.

    I shower when I get to the office but find that a washcloth and a bit of soap can work miracles when I ride out to get lunch & it is hot, etc.

    Good luck with your commute, I'm sure you'll have a blast at it!

    Anne

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    89
    Before I went through my mid-life crisis and joined the fixed-gear cult, my commuter bike was an '86 Rockhopper. My commute is a hair over 2 miles if I take the shortest route, about 4 if I go less directly and much longer on the way home if I want.

    I put slicks & a rack on the mtn bike for commuting and things worked out fine. My morning routine consists of showering & putting product in my hair, putting on work clothes, putting on cycling shoes, putting on a clip to keep my pants out of the chain, clipping in and heading to work. At work, the hair is still damp, so spend a few minutes 'styling' it before sitting down at my desk and changing shoes.

    I moderate my speed/effort in the morning so that I don't work up a sweat, so that's not really a problem. Going home is a different story....

 

 

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