Cross Country Bike as Commuter.- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 27 of 27
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    142

    Cross Country Bike as Commuter.

    Who uses an xc bike for their commute to work. Im planning to commute daily using the same bike i use on weekends (trail), ust to swap tire, as i cant afford to have another bike.

  2. #2
    No-Brakes Cougar
    Reputation: Gary the No-Trash Cougar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    1,143
    I commute on an old rigid mountain bike. Some people feel they're better off with a road or cyclocross bike for longer commutes. Ride whatever feels right to you. Good luck!
    R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio ~ July 10, 1942 May 16, 2010

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    361
    I use a Motobecane Fly Pro Mountainbike with very low-profile tread tires inflated FULLY. My commute includes a couple of very short sections of losse gravely stuff and even a short bit of single track, but mostly paved bike path.

    Commute is 23 km, and it takes me about 50-55 minutes TO work, and 1:00 to 1:05 coming home.

    I might be able to move a little faster with a road or cross bike on some sections, but the mountain bike allows me to ride much more agressively, and allows for quicker transitions through the city (easier to jump off the curb for a momnent or tow then bunny hop back on when I need to).

    I'm hard pressed to convince myself that I'd do bettter with a cross bike... maybe if I had a slightly longer communte with a little more open flat spots....

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    269
    Quote Originally Posted by roel
    Who uses an xc bike for their commute to work. Im planning to commute daily using the same bike i use on weekends (trail), ust to swap tire, as i cant afford to have another bike.
    Don't worry pal. Plenty of people do that.

    But as a daily commuter on bicycle. I prefer a pure commuter's bike over XC or road bike. Planning to get a pure commuter bike end if next year.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    361
    I use a Motobecane Fly Pro Mountainbike with very low-profile tread tires inflated FULLY. My commute includes a couple of very short sections of losse gravely stuff and even a short bit of single track, but mostly paved bike path.

    Commute is 23 km, and it takes me about 50-55 minutes TO work, and 1:00 to 1:05 coming home.

    I might be able to move a little faster with a road or cross bike on some sections, but the mountain bike allows me to ride much more agressively, and allows for quicker transitions through the city (easier to jump off the curb for a momnent or tow then bunny hop back on when I need to).

    I'm hard pressed to convince myself that I'd do bettter with a cross bike... maybe if I had a slightly longer communte with a little more open flat spots....

  6. #6
    Off the back...
    Reputation: pinkrobe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,186
    I use a XC mtn bike, but with road wheels/tires. I have disc brakes, so there's no issues with the swap - just pull out one wheelset and replace it with the other. It's easier and faster than changing tires.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: zorro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    465
    I also use a full rigid mtn bike as a commuter. Actually took the front shock off for a Surly 1x1 fork. Threw some 1.75" semi-slicks on and that's about it. You can also buy a rather cheap bike online (Craigslist) and transform it for pretty cheap. Just make sure the main components are at least adequate. Most anything else can be swapped.

  8. #8
    Bedwards Of The West
    Reputation: CommuterBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    5,451
    I have a dedicated commuter bike (cyclocross) for my commute...but I do it occasionally on the MTB just to spice things up every now and then. The cyclocross bike is faster, but there are a few things you can do to the trail bike that will make it more road friendly (a second set of wheels with road tires would be ideal for starters).

    If I was building a dual-purpose commuter/weekend warrior trail bike I'd probably make it a hardtail 29er. You could go with some road friendly gearing, and get the benefits of the 700c wheels for the street, and still have a capable trail bike.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    142
    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy
    I have a dedicated commuter bike (cyclocross) for my commute...but I do it occasionally on the MTB just to spice things up every now and then. The cyclocross bike is faster, but there are a few things you can do to the trail bike that will make it more road friendly (a second set of wheels with road tires would be ideal for starters).

    If I was building a dual-purpose commuter/weekend warrior trail bike I'd probably make it a hardtail 29er. You could go with some road friendly gearing, and get the benefits of the 700c wheels for the street, and still have a capable trail bike.
    Oh yes, im thinking of the same , a 29er. Any recommendation? Is 700c wheels for street/pave only? Is it trail worthy also?

  10. #10
    Bedwards Of The West
    Reputation: CommuterBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    5,451
    Quote Originally Posted by roel
    Oh yes, im thinking of the same , a 29er. Any recommendation? Is 700c wheels for street/pave only? Is it trail worthy also?

    700c and 29er wheels are exactly the same size. I have 36 spoke disc compatible "29er" wheels on my cyclocross, and I'm currently using 700x32 tires. The term '29er' refers to approximate overall tire diameter, not actual wheel size. I went with beefy, mountain oriented wheels for my commuter since some of my commute is on dirt roads....it's very 'trail worthy'.

    Usually the only difference between '29er' and '700c' wheelsets is the rear hub width...mtn/cyclocross standard is 135mm, road frames are usually 130 I think.


    I'd start with a frame and build your own... performance and pricepoint both have pretty decent looking 29er frames right now...
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    6,762

    I use an older XC....

    ridged for commuting. I could go a bit faster on a road or cross bike, but I'd also get the crap pounded out of me on the crappy roads on my commute. Plus there are a couple of options on my route the are either dirt paths or gravel roads and the MTB frame and geometry are much more cofortable on those sections. Plus the majority or my route is all rough dirt shoulder on the roads. I've been run off the edge of the pavement a few times. On a road bike it's instant endo, on the mtb it's just a simple matter of getting my weight back a little and rolling it out. I run 2.0" pavement tires tubeless and run disc brakes as well. So it's a comparatively comfortable ride and it stops on a dime. I'd ride a touring or cross bike if the paved roads around here were better than a typical country dirt road, but they're not. So the MTB frame and geo work better for me. That's besides if fun to breeze by the roadies because their bikes are beating them so hard that they have to slow down to miantain control!

    Anyway, it's deffinately doable, and you actually have more options for setting the bike up for the road conditions on your commute route. It's deffinately a compormise, but in many cases it's a small one. And with a 29er the compromises would be even smaller. The only draw back is that many mid to upper level MTB frames don't have brazons or attachment points for racks/and or fenders. Both are quite nice when commuting. So if those are something that you might want, you'll have to check the frame out for the required accoutraments before you drop the cash on it.

    Otherwise, MTBs make great commuters IMHO.

    Good Dirt
    "I do whatever my Rice Cripsies tell me to!"

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    12,083
    Quote Originally Posted by roel
    Who uses an xc bike for their commute to work. Im planning to commute daily using the same bike i use on weekends (trail), ust to swap tire, as i cant afford to have another bike.
    I have been riding an RMB Element dual Sus bike for 5 years, winter, summer, trail and commute...

    I use all types of tires and have been wearing them out steadily, I use higher pressures, on the commute and lower on the trails...

    Some times I change the tires for the trails, Somtimes I change them for the road...

    Sometimes I am to lazy to change the tires....

    I have never been lazy enough to not ride.

    Ride whatever you want and have fun doing it.

  13. #13
    Fat-tired Roadie
    Reputation: AndrwSwitch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    18,453
    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy
    700c and 29er wheels are exactly the same size. I have 36 spoke disc compatible "29er" wheels on my cyclocross, and I'm currently using 700x32 tires. The term '29er' refers to approximate overall tire diameter, not actual wheel size. I went with beefy, mountain oriented wheels for my commuter since some of my commute is on dirt roads....it's very 'trail worthy'.

    Usually the only difference between '29er' and '700c' wheelsets is the rear hub width...mtn/cyclocross standard is 135mm, road frames are usually 130 I think.
    That's most of it, but the rim width can be different too. Most mountain bike rims are 17mm or more from bead seat to bead seat, in order to mount the big fat tires we all love. When I can find the specs for 29er rims, they're usually even broader than that. Most road rims are right around 15mm across that same dimension. It doesn't sound like that big a difference, but according to the great Sheldon Brown, tire width should be 1.4-2x rim width. So a 15mm rim will carry a 22mm-30mm tire and a 17mm rim won't carry anything smaller than 25mm. I think that he's wrong about the high end, at least if the application is a low-pressure tire - when rim companies or tire companies specify the size of the other component, it seems like they expect a tire 3x the width of the rim to work okay.

    What that all means is that the same rim can't accept a standard 23mm road tire and a 2.1" MTB tire, at least if you're being conservative about keeping the rim/tire widths in a proportion that's reliable for stability and protection for the rim from road debris.

    There's no rule that says you can't lace road rims onto MTB hubs. Also note that a 700c wheel with a 23mm tire will fit most 26" mountain bikes with plenty of clearance. If you're using discs, there's no braking track to worry about.

    Mountain bike frames are typically a lot stiffer than road frames. So if you build some wheels, don't get too crazy about stiffness or you'll hate yourself/your rear wheel/your saddle/any chairs you come in contact with.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  14. #14
    Bedwards Of The West
    Reputation: CommuterBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    5,451
    ^ Good point. My rims are on the wide side for the 28c tires that I have on there... My experience has been that a fat tire on a skinny rim is a bigger issue than a skinny tire on a fat rim. I haven't had any issue with knocking the rims on stuff on my trail/dirt road adventures with this set-up. I have had some fat mtn wheels on what were basically road rims, and you could feel the tire wanting to roll off of the rim in corners.

    I haven't tried these wheels/tires on the 26" MTB yet... I'm going to have to give that a shot and see if I have enough clearance.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: sanjuro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    2,005
    You can't do that. An XC bike is made for XC. A commuter is made for commuting.

    BTW, I was doing about 30 miles a day on my ti hardtail after I slapped on Ritchey Tom Slick 1.25's. You see, rules don't apply to me.

  16. #16
    Bedwards Of The West
    Reputation: CommuterBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    5,451
    ^^ That's too bad. A ti hardtail would be a fun trail bike, but now you can't ever take yours on a trail again because it is now a commuter. If you need to get rid of it so that you can get another one that hasn't been commuted on, I'm here to help.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  17. #17
    PM Me for Wood Fenders
    Reputation: TrekJeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,001
    Commuter Boy hit everything on the head. I ride on my Surly CrossCheck. I went through the stock rear Ritchey SpeedMax tire(2100miles) and replaced it today with Bontrager 700x38 Invert. It came stock with a 700x32 and WOW what a difference the 38 made in cushioning.
    The wood is being bent! Let me know what you need!

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    86
    Quote Originally Posted by Squash
    The only draw back is that many mid to upper level MTB frames don't have brazons or attachment points for racks/and or fenders.
    My hardtail frame has disc brakes and a single screw hole (on each side of course) near the dropouts for mounting a rack/fender. I am in the process of planning a conversion to commuter bike because I have a dual suspension for trails now. I want to mount both rack and fender and both claim to be disc compatible, but I am not sure they work in combination with each other. Has anyone had success in this? The brands are Topeak (Explorer Disc Rack) and Axiom (Rainrunner MTB Reflex Fender). I think the fender has some kind of spacer in the hardware pack to work around the brakes.

    rack.jpg

    fender.jpg

  19. #19
    Fat-tired Roadie
    Reputation: AndrwSwitch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    18,453
    Quote Originally Posted by rweakley
    My hardtail frame has disc brakes and a single screw hole (on each side of course) near the dropouts for mounting a rack/fender. I am in the process of planning a conversion to commuter bike because I have a dual suspension for trails now. I want to mount both rack and fender and both claim to be disc compatible, but I am not sure they work in combination with each other. Has anyone had success in this? The brands are Topeak (Explorer Disc Rack) and Axiom (Rainrunner MTB Reflex Fender). I think the fender has some kind of spacer in the hardware pack to work around the brakes.
    I haven't done both rack and fender, but I've put full fenders with normal, straight stays on a fork with a disc brake. I had to bend the stay around the disc caliper, but it wasn't a big deal - the metal they're typically made from is very malleable. If you're worried about it, I'd say order the rack first, and then go to a shop and look at fenders once you've got it on. Other options are to mount the fenders to chainstay mounts like for bike lights. Those can go on either the chainstay or the rack.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation: gemini6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    414
    I commute on an all mountain full suspension right now, but just picked up a cheap but very ridable road bike at a yard sale, that I am going to use as a commuter... I think it cost me $50 in total for the bike and the few parts I needed.. Just a thought if your looking at different options...
    ________________
    Peace on dirt,

  21. #21
    A mean teen...
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    331
    Quote Originally Posted by roel
    Who uses an xc bike for their commute to work. Im planning to commute daily using the same bike i use on weekends (trail), ust to swap tire, as i cant afford to have another bike.
    You've nailed it on the head right there. I have one bike and two wheel sets for it: off road and on, and it feels great riding the same bike over and over but with two different wheel sets.

    To me it doesn't matter what type of damn bike you have, just slap on suitable tyres and away you go.
    Hardtail - A bike that is ridden by people who know how to pick lines, rather than plow through stuff.

  22. #22
    NormalNorm
    Reputation: norm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    935
    I have before....

    You will find that you wil get "in tune" with your bike. That said,the biggest problem will be wear and tear on the bike. As long as you do maintenance on the bike, you will be ok.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    89
    Although a CC or Tourer is on the winter wishlist, I've been commuting for years on an MTB hardtail. Had a nice old Fuji road bike but it was brutal to ride on some of the pothole ridden streets on my route. My current ride is an old C-dale hardtail with a rebuilt 50mm headshok fork. The bike has had a successful second life as a commuter. 50mm is plenty of travel to take the brunt of Chicago's horrific streets. Puncture-resistant 47mm road tires on Rhyno rims have proved to be trouble free.

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Kasper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    316

    YES: Ride your XC -it's all good excercise

    Quote Originally Posted by roel
    Who uses an xc bike for their commute to work. Im planning to commute daily using the same bike i use on weekends (trail), ust to swap tire, as i cant afford to have another bike.
    Right now I only have one bike - a XC hardtail which I use for a 15km commute on road. When time allows I take the long way to work or home and include some singletrack/fireroad and get 30km commute per

    During the last year I've used Schwalbe Rocket Ron and Maxxis ADvantage. For roadriding the Ron's are highly recommended and they're pretty good offroad too.

    4-5 months ago I commuted 2*25km on a XC fullie (Turner Flux) with no problems.

    I say YES! It's possible to commute on your XC bike. Choose some light rolling tyres like Rockets and possibly use them in the weekend as well. If it's a concern whether MTB tyres rolls as well as roadie slicks -just think of it as excercise. When I started comuting after 8 wks summer-holiday (and almost no weekend riding) it was tough the first week. Second week was better and now I log 150-200km from monday to friday and it's nothing! My only regret is that the commute is too short -but I threw in interval training tom compensate How many of you do interval training twice a day 5 times a week


    Kasper


  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    30
    I've been riding my 2010 Specialized Pitch Comp 6 miles each way all summer long. It's obviously more of a workout that it would be with a commuter or road bike, but that's fine with me, I need it. I don't bother changing tires, partly because some of the terrain is rough and gravelly but also because there are trails along the way that can provide a nice diversion. I have lights attached front and rear with the usual quick-disconnects for removal when trail riding. I would much prefer an XC bike over a road bike for commuting.

    Having said that, like so many others here, I'm in the process of converting my old 94 Rockhopper hardtail to a dedicated commuter.

  26. #26
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    260

    You're getting some good advice........

    Since I ride my MTB on through DC more than on trails these days, I'll offer this....

    You can either have two sets of 26" inch wheels, one with slicks of your choosing on it that way youll have an extra set of wheels as a back up in case of damage on or off road OR if you have discs you can go with a set of 700c/29'r disc wheels with slicks. Your frame and fork, if suspended, will limit tire size for cushionings sake on the 700c wheels but you'll gain a bit in terms of potential speed. Hell, you can even slap on a road cassette for more speed but you may have to shorten or have two chains so that you can swap out to compensate for rear cog diameter.

    For example:

    I have a set of Mavic Speed City's on my Homegrown with a Manitou Skareb fork which limits me to a 25 or MAYBE 28 series tire up front. My frame will allow for up to a 35 series tire. When I run my SID, which I will put back on after I replace my remote lockout, I can run up to a 32-35 out front as well. TEST FIT FIRST!! If possible, borrow a set of road/cross wheels and bolt them up to see how much clearance you're dealing with. Measure twice and buy once!!

    I also have a Surly CK that I have flat bars on it just to switch back and forth. I call it my "TALL MTB" but that's just because I'm nutty like that!!

    Good luck!
    Last edited by blak_byke; 09-27-2009 at 11:31 PM.

  27. #27

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    119
    My commuter is a Niner MCR9 w/ a rigid fork. I have two wheelsets, ZTR 355/Arch f/r for both. The offroad set has Hope II hubs and an 11-34 cassette while the commuter set has WTB and an 11-25. The commuter tires are 32mm - Schwalber/Panaracer f/r and I am running them tubeless. My commute is pretty long (25 miles each way) so to give my hands a few more options I added a set of titech H-bars.

    Overall, this setup works pretty well for me. There are times where I think that I might like a road bike w/ drops and higher gearing but, like many large cities, Washington DC and the surrounding suburbs have some pretty bad roads. Probably the biggest downside to my commuting setup is that with the h-bars and skinny tires, it is one butt-ugly bike!

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.