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  1. #1
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    The Million Dollar Question

    I was reading another post about a bike build and it got me thinking about how there seems to be two distinct camps regarding the amount of money one should spend on a commuter. When I was in school, I rode a $10 trek road bike because I had to keep it locked up in the weather all day. Now I have a job, a little more money and a place to keep my bike indoors, so I built a commuter for a little over $1000. My feeling is that I ride it a couple hours each day and I depend on it to get me to work, so I want something comfortable that functions flawlessly every day, but I know other people feel like it's a waste of money to buy something expensive just to commute. Anyway, I'm just interested to hear what other people decided for their commuter: expensive or inexpensive? Thanks!
    Last edited by Sizzler; 11-06-2009 at 01:57 PM.

  2. #2
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    Get something nice and treat yourself now that you can keep it indoors. =]

  3. #3
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    Dosent matter to me , if it fits I'll ride it . Some are more expensive than others .

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sizzler
    I was reading another post about a bike build and it got me thinking about how there seems to be two distinct camps regarding the amount of money one should spend on a commuter. When I was in school, I rode a $10 trek road bike because I had to keep it locked up in the weather all day. Now I have a job, a little more money and a place to keep my bike indoors, so I built a commuter for a little over $1000. My feeling is that I ride it a couple hours each day and I depend on it to get me to work, so I want something comfortable that functions flawlessly every day, but I know other people feel like it's a waste of money and a good bike to commute on something expensive. Anyway, I'm just interested to hear other people's opinion on this matter. Thanks!

    Here is the real challenge I keep my bike expenditures to less that $1/km....all in.

    Right now I am into it for about $10,000 that is for 5 years of riding and bike clothes shoes tires, upgrades everything etc...(Includes the Trans Rockies one year).

    Right now I am at about 31,000 km...

    So $0.3/km...

    So I can go blow another $20,000 dollars if I want...

    Geez maybe a lightspeed cross bike, and a Guru custom road bike.....

    Naaaa think I will just ride.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by joshed
    Get something nice and treat yourself now that you can keep it indoors. =]
    So, just to clarify, I own many bikes, including an expensive commuter. I was more interested in what YOU ride.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sizzler
    So, just to clarify, I own many bikes, including an expensive commuter. I was more interested in what YOU ride.
    Heh sorry about that. Just had my coffee.

    I am going to be riding this (as soon as my knee is healed):

    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=566392

  7. #7
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    I always have three bikes. I regularly sell/buy and swap bikes as better deals arise. I usually have about 1k invested in all three.

  8. #8
    No-Brakes Cougar
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    I commute on a 20 year old rigid MTB, though I'm not above buying or building an expensive commuter if I like it and it has what I want on it. It's just that, with 4 bikes already between my girlfriend and I (being stored on the apartment balcony) we don't really have room for another. One day I'll get to build more, but for now....

    I think it's also a point of necessity, there's nothing wrong with spending money on a nice commuter if you're actually going to use it and have a safe place to store it. Though the more you leave it outside, unattended the more practical it would be to have a beater.
    R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio ~ July 10, 1942 May 16, 2010

  9. #9
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    I'm assuming I'm the 'bike build thread' guy that started this....

    I have a commuter that I built for around $1100, and a mtn bike that I bought for $2100 and have put another couple hundred into over the past few years. I also have a pile of parts in the garage.

    I am also always looking at selling one or the other to build something else. Since I started commuting, I have always had two bikes (one for commuting and one for playing on)... but I'd love to have three.

    I'm a bike snob to the point where I'm not really happy with it unless it is in the right weight range, has good components and does exactly what it's supposed to do. This generally means at least $1000 for a rigid bike, closer to (or over) $2000 for a full suspension bike.

    In answer to the original question... I'm on my commuter bike every single day. It saves me money, it keeps me in shape, it sets the tone for my day and decompresses me on the way home. It is a part of who I am. It should be an incredibly nice bike, an absolute joy to ride. I wish I had had $3000 to put into it, but I could only spend $1100.
    I have enough room to keep it inside at home, and the luxury of keeping it 10 feet from my desk at work, so it is only outside when I'm riding it. In my situation I can't think of a reason not to have a really nice commuter bike.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
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  10. #10
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    CommuterBoy, you were indeed the person who started this thread for me, and it sounds like we share similar opinions. I spend more time on my bike than in my car so it would seem appropriate for my bike to cost more (which it does). However, I often hear people comment that it's asinine to put money into a commuter.

  11. #11
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    I've got about $1200 in my commuter. It's a burly fixed gear 29er. The bike is dead reliable and indestructable.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmucker
    I've got about $1200 in my commuter. It's a burly fixed gear 29er. The bike is dead reliable and indestructable.
    frame made in my hometown!

  13. #13
    Bedwards Of The West
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sizzler
    CommuterBoy, you were indeed the person who started this thread for me, and it sounds like we share similar opinions. I spend more time on my bike than in my car so it would seem appropriate for my bike to cost more (which it does). However, I often hear people comment that it's asinine to put money into a commuter.
    There are two kinds of bike commuters: Bike people who have a love for bikes and ride to work because it's another opportunity to ride, and everybody else. A large portion of the 'everybody else' group would be appalled if they knew what a good bike costs. My $2000 mountian bike, for example, is decent...but it's not 'nice.' I'm a couple thousand short of 'nice.'
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  14. #14
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy
    There are two kinds of bike commuters: Bike people who have a love for bikes and ride to work because it's another opportunity to ride, and everybody else. A large portion of the 'everybody else' group would be appalled if they knew what a good bike costs. My $2000 mountian bike, for example, is decent...but it's not 'nice.' I'm a couple thousand short of 'nice.'
    The Bicycle Arms Race really taints what price range a 'nice' bike is, and mtbr.com is primarily an opportunity to flash bling. A nice bike is one that does exactly what is expected of the rider and is comfortable and convenient.

    As an example, I have an '89 Rockhopper that can run gears, racks and fenders for a long tour and be comfortable all day. I have FMF brakes on it, allowing me to use 26 inch wheels, 650b mountain bike tires and 700x32mm. In the summer it is my favorite mountain bike with a 650b front- coming in at ~22lbs and all the parts are distinctly low end, but even with gears and crap, only 10 lbs more and it is a 100 dollar bike. I think it is better than "nice," and actually really friggin awesome.

  15. #15
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    ^^ Yeah I sound kind of jaded. Bike lovers often have lower end bikes, nothing wrong with that. I had a 24" cruiser size BMX for a long time just because it was so dang fun. Not expensive at all. But there's no question that you get what you pay for with bikes/components. That Rockhopper was high end in 1989...an 'expensive' bike. My Kona will be an old beater in 20 years, and I hope someone is still enjoying it. Personally I'll probably move on to something more modern before my Kona is a classic, becuase I love change and I'm always wanting to try out new stuff.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  16. #16
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    My commuter is the same as my road bike is the same as my 'cross bike, a Jamis Nova. I have two wheelsets. Once we get to this time of year, I tend to just leave the 'cross wheels on, but I haven't actually done any 'cross riding this year, the mountain bike is my off road weapon of choice right now.

    I don't think it's at all silly to spend good money on a commuter, for the same reason others outlined. My next "commuter" will be either a Gunnar or a Salsa 'cross bike with disks, and I'll build it, two wheelsets again.

    David B.

  17. #17
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    Most real cyclists that I meet that also commute, ride nice bikes. Then there are the others that are commuting for other reasons, such as to save money. Two different schools of thought. I figure with a 34 mile round trip commute, I should ride something reasonably nice. I have a 20 year old road bike that I am in process of updating the components on.

  18. #18
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    I'm in the cheap commuter category, even though I can bring it inside and sit next to it all day.

    Mine is a 20 year old rigid Trek MTB. It's a tank, 38 lbs. I look at it as a training tool, my other bikes feel so light and nimble when I get on them.

    I understand spending more money on a nice commuter though. I say spend as much as you need to stay happy while commuting. If you're fine with a cheapy and won't dread riding it, go that way, if you want that nice bike feel more often, then do that.

    Someday I will probably get a nice commuter, but I would rather spend the money on m other bikes right now. Plus if I go with a nicer commuter I will lose my training edge the heavy beast is giving me now.

    I have a coworker who seems to be going in the opposite direction of me. When I first started I was on my road bike and she on her MTB. She upgraded her MTB and used that for commuting and then I got an old road bike. I am now on the 20 year old MTB and just yesterday I caught up with her on the way home and she was commuting on a new Superfly!
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  19. #19
    weirdo
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    Good thread, Sizzler- a lot of interresting coments. What I spent on MY commuter is really hard to count because of the way it came about. I implied in the other thread that I wouldn`t want to try, but here `s my best take:
    The original bike was my uncle`s that I got indirectly after he died (long story in that "indirectly"). If I counted up all the new and used parts I bought specifically for that bike, what I spent on stuff I horse swapped to put on it, value of stuff I just keep in stock (cables, housing, brake pads) the prices of things I bought that didn`t work out and are now on other bikes or in storage, probably between $1200 and $1400. By counting the low side (unincluding what I paid at one time for stuff that eventually went onto my bike), I could maybe drop that number to around $600 without having to lie about it. On top of any money, I also have in the neighborhood of 60 hours invested in fabricating parts for it- I built the stem, front rack, and some miscelaneous hardware myself. As it sits now, I wouldn`t classify it as a NICE bike, but I have the good stuff where I think it counts and I wouldn`t want to trade it off for any other bike on the market, regardless of price. The only thing I still want to upgrade is the headlight- finances don`t allow much more blowing money for the remainder of this year, so it`ll probably be a few more months.

    A lot of people have already said well that bikes are what I love, so I spend a lot on them. I don`t drink, don`t care about sex anymore, don`t want a boat or ATV or snowmobile, hate sportsbooks- what else am I gonna do with my expendable income? The commuter was mostly built by this summer, so this year I`ve been dumping some pretty good (in the hundreds, not the thousands) cash into an old Bridgestone roadbike and our Burley tandem (`nother for ya, Sizzler). Next year it`ll probably be a relatively high end folder. Oh, my mtb is just hanging in there- haven`t dropped money into it for years other than "wear" stuff.
    Recalculating....

  20. #20
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    The rule seems to be if the bike is reliable, fun (relative) and you ride it, money doesn't matter. I like to see a deliberately crafted bike that suits the rider's intentions.

  21. #21
    weirdo
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    Quote Originally Posted by umarth
    I like to see a deliberately crafted bike that suits the rider's intentions.
    Me, too.

    I meant to say also that I`ve put together several bikes for friends and family that would all make very good commuters after adding lights. Those bikes have all been Craigslist rigid mtbs that I refurbished and in some cases added a little to. In most cases, I charge what they cost me, which generally ends up around 150 all told. Aside from actually functioning great, they`re much cooler than modern stock bikes IMO, and they`re a lot of fun to do. I would have no qualms commuting on any of them, but MY bike is MINE- no two ways about it!
    Recalculating....

  22. #22
    ride like you stole it
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    I think a lot of it depends on what your commute consists of. I commute through the winter, in all weather conditions, and park it outdoors so I ride a cheap old road bike. That said my commute is only about 2 miles, so the quality of bike isn't that important.

    For my uses on of the important qualities of the bike is that if it gets stolen or breaks beyond repair I wouldn't be to heart broken. Because of this don't think I'd really want an expensive commuter, even though the ride might be more fun.
    I lubed my disc brakes because they squeaked.
    Man was that fun to work out

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by spcarter
    I think a lot of it depends on what your commute consists of. I commute through the winter, in all weather conditions, and park it outdoors so I ride a cheap old road bike. That said my commute is only about 2 miles, so the quality of bike isn't that important.

    For my uses on of the important qualities of the bike is that if it gets stolen or breaks beyond repair I wouldn't be to heart broken. Because of this don't think I'd really want an expensive commuter, even though the ride might be more fun.
    you actually highlight one of the reasons I started this thread. my feeling is that since I ride through 9 months of rain and snow that I should invest in components that have a proven track record for holding up in adverse conditions, even though these components usually cost significantly more money and they too will eventually need to be replaced. on the other hand, I can see how a person would feel the same as you: why spend money on parts that will just get weathered? i think they are equally valid points, and i appreciate everyone that has shared their thoughts!

  24. #24
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    For me it was about having a bike to do multiple things, I like to tour and I commute everyday...I wanted a bicycle that would perform well and last. I built a good set of wheels, and kept the group in the mid-range area. It would have been easy to go high-end but I save $$ for the play bikes.

    Some areas of a bike are worth investing more dollars into than others, i.e., rear derailleurs, LX on a commuter makes sense to me...so I use it, but I also use DuraAce brifters to keep the shifting clean and crisp over a long span of time...

    One of the coolest things about commuter bikes is the vast range of builds and creativity...I love it.

    Be safe.

  25. #25
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    It's often a labor of love that really "molds" your commuter..... I roll a really decent 05' rockhopper with what I see as "nice" parts I put about 35-50 miles on it from monday through friday and another 40 on it when I commute on saturday! It's parked inside accually I lean it in front of my desk so it's always in eye "shot". The way i have it set up is I could pop off the fenders put some AM tires on it and I could hit the trail! (I accually do it from time to time) but my Prophet is a better suited tool for the job here on out trails! Money is always a consideration for me as my wife has a tight hold on the "purse strings" so most of the time when I need somthing for it I have to sneak out and get it and she will ask me after the fact "what did you buy from_____" and I say Oh I had a "Flat" then it's justafyable!!! if I had my way I'd probably commute in a $4500 road bike but thats just me.... and I think my rock hopper is more of a swiss army knife of sorts....
    The most important thing is what God thinks about it. He will have the final say. Joshua Stinebrink

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  26. #26
    a lazy pedaler
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    Nice you open this thread S...actually I was going to post on CB's.

    People said important things here..
    1.- jeffscott maths.
    2.- "I'm on my commuter bike every single day. It saves me money, it keeps me in shape, it sets the tone for my day and decompresses me on the way home. It is a part of who I am. It should be an incredibly nice bike, an absolute joy to ride" (CB)
    3.- "I love change and I'm always wanting to try out new stuff" (CB)
    4.- "For me it was about having a bike to do multiple things" (tr2biker)
    5.- "I'd probably commute in a $4500 road bike" (ae111black)

    for me a nice bike will cover pretty much all of those statements (well, may be not the one from ae111black)... I start riding again this year on January..after 13 years of not touching a bicycle, and also I start commuting on march with the 09 Trek 4500 MTB I bought...I just felt in love with this...I think I will always want a nicer bike, but as some said...the bike has to be in the budget...right now 'm building a Pugsley, and is not going to be a fast building...but I'm certainly thinking about a new build...I want to give it a try to SSing, one bike that will be my commuter/SS off-road bike just by switching tires...that wont cost me less than 1K for sure...

    I don't own a Car (well my wife has one, which mean I pay pretty much all the expenses associated) and I don't plan to have one....I want my ride to be the nicest!
    Last edited by martinsillo; 11-07-2009 at 06:47 PM.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar
    I built the stem.
    I'm interested in how you did this. Did you weld it or somehow have access to a cnc machine? Either way, that is awesome!

  28. #28
    weirdo
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    Thanks, Sizzler. The latest ones used filet brazing to join the parts with a little bit of machining before and after brazing. The first one I TIG welded because I hadn`t yet learned to braze- since the binders are too small for me to reliably TIG without distorting the cap or threads, there was a lot more machining on that one. Funny thing about CNC- I my employer bought a small CNC endmill a few years back and I can see how handy it is for things I would never have thought of before, but I`ve never learned how to use it. For as usefull as it could be, it really doesn`t interest me, so I stick to the manual machines.
    Attached Images Attached Images     
    Recalculating....

  29. #29
    weirdo
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    I found another pic I was looking for- this is how the caps are made. First I turn the OD and rough turn the ID (about .020 undersized for the ID at this point) on the end of a chunk of oversized tube. Then it goes to the Bridgeport and I put four little pockets on the sides where the binders will go- the big hole in the middle is just for looks. After endmilling, I braze on the binders (made from either 8mm or 5/16 coldroll and predrilled to the tap drill size of my screws) and put it back in the lathe to rebore the inside to final diameter. That takes care of any warping as well as cutting out the parts of the binders that would have been in the way of the bars. This method comes out a lot cleaner than machining the whole head and still lets me get the binder screws in nice and close while giving me the little pockets to line up the 8mm stubs so they all come out straight and even. After boring the final ID, I part it off and the cap, split it into halves with a hacksaw or bandsaw, file the sawed surfaces smooth, tap the bottom screw holes and drill out the top screw holes. Sounds kind of complicated, but once the cap is done the rest of a stem is a piece of cake. I think of it as cheating to do so much machining for a brazed part, but there`s no way I could get it to turn out as nice otherwise.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The Million Dollar Question-cimg4877.jpg  

    Recalculating....

  30. #30
    The Brutally Handsome
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    Those stems look so cool, like early salsa stuff, very nice work! Ever think of selling your work? Seems like there are few options for nice quill stems with removable face plates. In fact, salsa just recalled all their quills so there isn't much available except ugly profiles. Again, nice looking work, I wish I knew something about putting pieces of metal together!

  31. #31
    Kohler
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    my commuter bike is my ONLY bike. a military salary isnt exactly the ideal income for multiple bikes. its a 2007 Haro R3. i found it on craigslist for only 275 brand new! i know all of the mtb snobs might say "oh god, a haro?" but really, at 275 i couldnt resist.

  32. #32
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    I commute on a 1997 Rocky Mountain Blizzard. I put skinny tires and a rigid fork on it. It's build up with XT quailty components. Nothing super fancy but no junk. It's all beat up from the weather and years of riding but it's still a nice bike. It's my mountain bike too. I have a Judy suspension fork but never use it.
    If my bike was safe indoors I wouldn't have any problems riding something even nicer.

  33. #33
    weirdo
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    Sizzler- Thanks again. I`d love to sell them, but considering it takes me about 30 hours to build a stem, if I paid myself $6 per hr.... Better off buying a nice Nitto for $60 at half the weight of mine. Racks might be feasible, though. My rack building method requires way less exensive equipment than my stem method and I could probably knock a a half dozen per day once I got set up setup- if I ever get a garage, I`ll likely give it a go for racks or maybe some of the other little mounting tidbits I`ve done.

    Limba- got any pics of your Blizzard posted? The world needs more vintage Blizzard images!
    Recalculating....

  34. #34
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    No and it's in rough shape. I ride it almost everyday and all through the winter. it's locked up outside so it freezes up and then thaws out when I get home. It's rusting badly but still holding together. Everyone asks me is that your beater bike? ;(
    I bought a Salsa Moto Rapido frame but I don't want to build that up until my Blizz. frame cracks.

  35. #35
    I'm SUCH a square....
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    I started looking at bikes again after years away from them; there were times when I'd try to recapture the purity of the days when I was a teen, pedaling the u-kno-wht outta the old Schwinn 10-speed. Never succeeded until about '97, on a HUFFY of all things, 18-spd rigid with fat tires! Worked my way up...to discovering the REAL world of bikes, not the big-box crap (and it really IS crap anymore, I should know, building them...).

    Each bike I got after the Huffy was a build-up, my own parts pick, and each more $$ than the last. Currently, I'm on a $2K Jamis Dakar XLT, 3 years on it, and hopefully many more to go!

    Got hooked on the ride again, and was introduced to trails by a buddy. It's almost like getting away with an extra $500 on your taxes! Better even than getting away with a little philandering....

    Pedaling, whether on pavement for the commute, or on dirt, is a drug -- the ONLY one I know that's actually GOOD for you! I hope to stay addicted for at least another 40 years, so I can ride that 90 minutes on my 90th birthday!
    A bike is the only drug with no bad side effects....

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sizzler
    I was reading another post about a bike build and it got me thinking about how there seems to be two distinct camps regarding the amount of money one should spend on a commuter. When I was in school, I rode a $10 trek road bike because I had to keep it locked up in the weather all day. Now I have a job, a little more money and a place to keep my bike indoors, so I built a commuter for a little over $1000. My feeling is that I ride it a couple hours each day and I depend on it to get me to work, so I want something comfortable that functions flawlessly every day, but I know other people feel like it's a waste of money to buy something expensive just to commute. Anyway, I'm just interested to hear what other people decided for their commuter: expensive or inexpensive? Thanks!
    Its not a matter of expensive or inexpensive. Its a matter of does it serves yr purpose and function under what u want?

    I think people are worry that getting an expensive commuter with ending up getting stolen. Its not worth it. But if u have safe place to safe keep it. And u no need to leave outside alone. I will say fine. Go ahead and get a good commuter regardless of price.

    But I am a full commuter which I need to use it for my outing. Meet up with friends at shopping mall which I have no choice but to leave it outside , expose to danger of getting stolen. Yes, I used a strong U-lock but no gurantee it will not be stolen.

    I will prefer using a cheap but value for money dedicated commuter. That is why I like KHS urban X so much. It has a friendly price tag($399) and has all the necessary commuting components like fenders,multi gear,kickstand,26 x 1.5 slick and rear rack ready.

    Even it lost, getting another similiar replacement will not be much a problem.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar
    Thanks, Sizzler. The latest ones used filet brazing to join the parts with a little bit of machining before and after brazing. The first one I TIG welded because I hadn`t yet learned to braze- since the binders are too small for me to reliably TIG without distorting the cap or threads, there was a lot more machining on that one. Funny thing about CNC- I my employer bought a small CNC endmill a few years back and I can see how handy it is for things I would never have thought of before, but I`ve never learned how to use it. For as usefull as it could be, it really doesn`t interest me, so I stick to the manual machines.
    That is AWESOME! Excellent machining work. Looks like you'll never have to worry about trying to track down threaded quill stems for older bikes. I actually prefer them myself.
    R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio ~ July 10, 1942 May 16, 2010

  38. #38
    jct
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    i ride a 2006 surly cross check. fairly stock except with a b17 narrow, thomson stem and seatpost.

  39. #39
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    I started commuting on an '93 Stumpjumper I bought for $140. It lasted a few weeks and needed some work... Did the work, it lasted a while and now it needs more work... I wish I'd just bought a new singlespeed instead. The hours spent messing with canti brakes and Suntour parts is not worth the money I saved. Back to public transit untill the Karate Monkey arrives.

  40. #40
    jrm
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    I ride the CX bike

    now more because my road bike was getting really thrashed. Other then buying the some double cross frame and project II fork and some stuff off CL i had most the parts already.

    I also find myself grabbing the CX bike for rides other then my commute.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by pushinpixels
    I started commuting on an '93 Stumpjumper I bought for $140. It lasted a few weeks and needed some work... Did the work, it lasted a while and now it needs more work... I wish I'd just bought a new singlespeed instead. The hours spent messing with canti brakes and Suntour parts is not worth the money I saved. Back to public transit until the Karate Monkey arrives.
    Nice..so far the KM Complete or a 1x1 Build are my options for a future SS Commute/Off road project...first I need to finish building my Pugsley...gather some $...bla bla bla

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrm
    now more because my road bike was getting really thrashed. Other then buying the some double cross frame and project II fork and some stuff off CL i had most the parts already.

    I also find myself grabbing the CX bike for rides other then my commute.

    ^^ That's because CX bikes are pretty much the coolest thing around. I did a century on my 1x8 'cross bike. I commute on it daily. It also looks almost as cool as it makes you feel when you ride it.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
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  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy
    ^^ That's because CX bikes are pretty much the coolest thing around. I did a century on my 1x8 'cross bike. I commute on it daily. It also looks almost as cool as it makes you feel when you ride it.
    Not as cool as fixies. I road mine up to Portland twice (135) with gear and one trip was and overnighter. And the fenders rub all the time. Feck it. I need a Crosscheck (like everyone else).

  44. #44
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    "Anyway, I'm just interested to hear what other people decided for their commuter: expensive or inexpensive? Thanks!"

    As much as the wife will let me. j/k

    Expensive/Inexpensive is relative. 2 years ago when I was making more than double what I am now, I wouldn't have thought twice about dropping money on bikes. Now the only money I spend is to keep them rolling.

  45. #45
    weirdo
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    Quote Originally Posted by njcoppola
    Expensive/Inexpensive is relative. 2 years ago when I was making more than double what I am now, I wouldn't have thought twice about dropping money on bikes. Now the only money I spend is to keep them rolling.
    Somehow, that sounds very familiar
    Recalculating....

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar
    Somehow, that sounds very familiar
    all of it....I just had a "conversation" about bikes with the wife in my lunch time...no need to say more.

  47. #47
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    sounds like we're all in the same boat. I just got a talking to about trying to buy a 200$ Bridgestone touring bike after giving the wife guff for buying a 7$ shirt. I argued that you can't flip a 7$ shirt for twice as much as you paid for it so I was justified . . . big mistake!

  48. #48
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    No need for much of that conversation around here- we both know the money has dried WAY up compared to last year. I can`t complain too much though- mostly we just can`t afford to spend a lot on toys. I feel for the folks who are struggling to keep the bills paid up for necessities and I know there are a lot out there in that condition these days.
    Recalculating....

  49. #49
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    Time to start picking up all those shoes laying around on the road?
    Recalculating....

  50. #50
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    you are right...the thing is I'm in the middle of a building project, which I know will take some time to get it done..I know that in nov and dec we have some things to do and I can't buy any part right know...jensonusa have a good deal on Easton (just receive an email today)..I comment it on the table and that was it...she just remind me "nicely" I just can't pull the trigger right now....I know she is right...but you know... my inner kid doesn't feel right

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffscott
    Here is the real challenge I keep my bike expenditures to less that $1/km....all in.

    Right now I am into it for about $10,000 that is for 5 years of riding and bike clothes shoes tires, upgrades everything etc...(Includes the Trans Rockies one year).

    Right now I am at about 31,000 km...

    So $0.3/km...

    So I can go blow another $20,000 dollars if I want...

    Geez maybe a lightspeed cross bike, and a Guru custom road bike.....

    Naaaa think I will just ride.


    That seems like an extremely generous bike allowance. Unless I did my math backwards that comes to $1.40ish/mile. I guess it also depends if you are talking American dollar. I'd say maybe I would alot myself $0.25/mile. Say average gas price comes to $3/gallon and my car gets 18miles to the gallon, which gives me $0.16/mile plus extra for saved wear and tear.
    Friends Don't Let Friends Drive

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  52. #52
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    ^^ We were on a pretty tight budget when I started commuting, but I had a monthly gas budget...obviously I wasn't using anywhere near that much on gas anymore... so I put all of my gas money towards bike parts, clothing/gear for the bikes. That got me pretty established within the first year or so and I haven't used that gas budget money in a couple of years.
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  53. #53
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    Good, interesting thread. I like reading about people's commuter bikes. It seems to me that everyone's situation is different, so everyone needs different bikes. Need to cover a long distance on good roads and you have access to a locker room and indoor bike storage? Yeah, ride the high end ride bike. Only going a couple and you have to lock the bike outside in crappy weather? Maybe don't ride the high end road bike, but the rusty beater MTB is perfect. Those are extremes obviously, but everyone's commute falls in there somewhere which will bias you towards a nicer bike or not so nicer bike or whatever different type of bike makes sense. Since "commuter" bicycles have become all the rage, its amusing to see what the major manufactorers are putting out under that marketting niche. Most of them are not suited to my commute (or my sense of style, for that matter). The debate can rage on about nice bike vs. cheap bike, CX bike vs. MTB, etc, but there just is no "one-size-fits-all" commuter.

  54. #54
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    ^^ Exactly. As a bike snob I dislike the whole "commuter" bike label that companies are going for. A commuter bike should be as individual as the person riding it. That said, if it were only bike snobs like me who had the skills and the tools to build their own bike in their basement who were out there commuting, that would defeat the whole purpose. Whatever gets people on bikes and out of cars is what we need, I guess. Even if they're going to be riding some dorky bike in total stock form. For me, I'll keep building 'em for my purposes and dumping as much money as I want into them.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

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