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  1. #1
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    Work commute on BD, or Ogre plus rack?

    I recently started commuting to work, twice a week, 34 miles round trip. Been taking the Ogre and leaving change of clothes etc at work, but come spring and summer, i'll be showering and changing at a gym up the street from work, so I'll be taking my towels and clothing and such with me.

    That being said, should I get a rack for the Ogre or just have at it on the BD? It is a mix of busy urban and gravel path riding.

    I ask because I'm not quite sure how much my BD weighs, normally it has a 4 year old kid on it so I'm guessing with his seat etc it weighs 70ish before kid is added? But this commute would be without kid seat.

    Curious if the weight difference over an Ogre plus rack, plus the 26" wheels, would be a huge detriment. Its basically 1. Ride BD or 2. Spend money on rack and panniers for Ogre.

    This is probably a "try and see" thing but I was curious if anyone commutes longish distances on a cargo bike.
    Transition Bandit 29
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  2. #2
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    I'd say as long as your commute doesn't involve carrying your bike up stairs or storage room constraints, the BD would be great. No real need to buy something you won't need.

    I haven't commuted on my BD, but it's a comfortable ride. Plenty people have done long tours on it.

  3. #3
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    I don't know how much the BD or the Ogre weighs. I own a Trek Transport at 56lbs. I commute with it daily and have to say it's a PIG. But I love it because it takes as long as it takes and I'm not in a rush. I consider it paying my dues and enjoy the ride while I'm on the bike because most people don't get that joy and satisfaction. My 86' Klein Pinnacle Elite commuter is much lighter and faster but just not as much fun. I know the ride on the Transport could be made much faster via electric assist but I feel it defeats the purpose of being on the bike in the first place.

    I also do grocery shopping and running errands regularly on it. My suggestion is go for it with the BD and see. If not, you can come up with alternatives. Enjoy!

  4. #4
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    My half fat dummy is faster than my commuter because it has magical properties that turn lights green.

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys, I think I'm gonna give it a whirl on Monday to see what's what.
    Transition Bandit 29
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    Surly Necro Pugs w/ Lefty PBR
    Surly Big Dummy

  6. #6
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    I have a BD and the Ogre's little brother (Troll). I love my BD but the Troll is a speed demon compared to it.

    Try taking out the BD a few times and then use a backpack with the Ogre to compare. That will give you an idea if it is worth it to get the rack for the ogre.

  7. #7
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    I use a Big Dummy as my daily commuter and love it. The best part of the Dummy is you really don't need to worry about how you pack. I have panniers, but I often just use a backpack or gym bag and then put that bag into the side bags. I frequently bring my laptop to and from work, as well as other items like yoga mat's, a dress jacket, boxes of coffee, change of shoes.... whatever. Pack it in and don't worry about it.

    The Big Dummy is so useful, and the perfect commuter in my mind.

  8. #8
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    I agree with minte. For the type of riding that one does on a typical commuting route, I don't think the speed advantage of other bikes is really worth considering. Especially given the fact that you're only limited to a rack and a backpack on a regular bike, the same stuff carried on a BD will be easier to pack and on the big plus side, no sweaty back! One big drawback, if applicable, is if stairs or storage is a concern.

  9. #9
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    I commuted to work on my Dummy a bunch last year. Then I had to work scads of OT, and added a Cross-Check to my stable, outfitted with a rear rack and a Carradice Nelson saddlebag. They both have good points and bad points, and I've done a bunch of commuting on both. The CC is more responsive and a little faster, but not too much.

    The Big Dummy can carry anything; if I need to pick something up on the way home (like the once-a-week box of farm fresh vegetables) the Dummy always gets the nod. It's my first "real" bike and I ride it with my 2 kids on the back all the time; I still love it. My only complaint is that I haven't had time to get a nice leather saddle on it (yet).

    The cross-check is nimble, fun, and light. I can fit a change of clothes, Kindle DX, (small) towel, and toilettries in my Carradice Nelson, so I can fit everything I need to get too and from work without any trouble. I have a set of panniers that I can throw on the rack if I need to carry a bit more, and I keep one at work in case I need to swing by the grocery store on the way home.

    I'd say it really comes down to a couple simple points:
    - What do you enjoy riding more?
    - How much do you need to carry?

    I still use and ride both on a regular basis. You already own both bikes, so your big question is the rack & panniers... that's a relatively modest investment. I don't think you could go wrong either way.

  10. #10
    Must build all the wheels
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    I personally would not want to commute that far regularly on my Xtracycle, it is not so much about difficulty but rather time spent commuting. If that is not an issue I say ride which ever bike makes you happiest. Having a dummy for impulsive trips to the store can be extremely nice. When I commute on my Xtracycle, that is one thing I love but my commute is much shorter.

  11. #11
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    I would take the Ogre, hands down. Use the BD when you want to ride it or have a load to haul. The rest of the time it is going to be the Ogre. Here is how you can tell if it is the Ogre or the BD. Simply time the trip. I bet you save 15 minutes each way.

    If you want to save the expense of the rack and panniers, try with a backpack. I don't like them myself, but you can try.

    How long is the ride taking you? I would bet in the winter it is around 85 minutes OW. The BD would take 95-100 minutes.

  12. #12
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    Work commute on BD, or Ogre plus rack?

    I have both an Ogre and Big Dummy in my stable, and I almost always use the Ogre with a Hawg Camelbak instead of panniers. My commute is 19 round trip by road or up to 25 when I go through the state park and add other trails. I use the Dummy once or twice a month when I need to bring clean clothes to the office or have to run errands after work.

    I had the Ogre first and tried using the Nice Rack and several different panniers. I gave up on all that because the Camelbak has enough capacity for everything I need. It consolidates all my gear to one bag and was much lighter than rack, panniers, and water bottle. The NV panel works well enough to keep my back dry-ish, even in the summer.

    The Ogre is just more fun for me. The Dummy is a pig, but it's utility and unique ride is fun if taken in moderation.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by longhaulcommuter View Post
    How long is the ride taking you? I would bet in the winter it is around 85 minutes OW. The BD would take 95-100 minutes.
    Just curious what you're basing this on? I haven't personally done any type of time trial tests to see which is faster. But my BD is geared a little different than my other bikes as well, so my tests will probably be inconclusive. Cruising around and grocery runs, though, where time isn't really of a big concern, I really don't notice a (perceived) big difference between the BD and other bikes, myself.

  14. #14
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    Over ten miles, my times on my xtracycle and crosscheck are reasonably close, within a few minutes either way. I base this as much on how they were set up as anything else. The cross check was set up to be more aggressive and the xtracycle was more of a comfy worker-bike. In an urban environ I would bet that the times would be even closer.

  15. #15
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    Did you try it out? How did it go? I have a BD and I just picked up a Troll, so I'm curious

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