• 04-08-2015
    Ominous
    New Commuter, bike confusion
    Greetings all. Im finally in a position to commute to work, and I'm all kinds of pumped about it. Its a relatively short commute about 25 miles round trip and all road. I though Id be able to have at it with my SS Niner Sir 9, but I'm having trouble with rack options. I purchased a Thule pack and pedal and can mount them on the stays (their not straight) but its bit to flexy for my liking even when cinched all the way down. So Im looking at other options and came across

    Save Up to 60% Off Titanium Cyclocross Bicycles | Road Bikes - Motobecane Fantom Cross Team Titanium | Cross Bikes

    Any opinions? Do you think it would hold up to clyde (about 250lbs) with 20-30lbs of gear?
  • 04-08-2015
    fotooutdoors
    Most bikes will stand up to a Clyde if the wheels are properly tensioned and stress relieved. If you buy it, have your lbs stress relieve and check the spoke tensions on the wheels or do it yourself if you know how.
  • 04-08-2015
    Rustedthrough
    The Motobecane looks pretty sweet, but, the price is high enough that I would seriously consider some cx or touring options from an lbs before I pulled the trigger. Especially if you are planning to bike commute 25 miles daily, the lbs warranty and tune up support might have some value over the low BD purchase price.
  • 04-08-2015
    TenSpeed
    I want to not like that Fantom Cross but after reading the spec list, I really can't. For that price, and a full titanium frame, BB7 disc brakes, carbon fork, 105 and the ability to get racks on there if you need them....and for that price? Hard to beat.
  • 04-09-2015
    Kleebs
    I've been looking at that bike for a while now and pretty much came to the same conclusion as TenSpeed. That's a nice bike at a really great price. That said, RustedThrough made a good point about LBS support. Depends on your ability and willingness to do your own maintenance and repairs. Your weight will work itself out on its when you start riding 25 miles every day.
  • 04-09-2015
    jrm
    For as long a commute and carrying as much you anticipate, i'd consider a road bike with endurance geometry and eyelets for the same money as the Motobecane. If you buy from a shop theyll work with you fitting and outfitting the bike. The Giant Defy and specialized roubiax come to mind.
  • 04-09-2015
    bepperb
    What? So you bought a rack/pannier and it's flexy for your liking and the solution is a new titanium cyclocross bike? How exactly does that work? Is there no concern the setup will be just as flexy on that?

    I think the logical solution is a new rack, or a different upper mounting setup for what you have. What about a seatpost rack mount adapter?

    Also, that frame is only available up to 56cm. Don't get me wrong it seems like a nice bike... but... if I was just getting started commuting a 1300 dollar tiantium cyclocross bike seems an odd purchase. Are you paying for weight savings on a bike you're about to strap 30lbs of stuff to? Do you think buying an expensive bike will be more reliable and then negating that by buying via BD and not having it setup by an LBS?

    To be short figure out how to make what you have work and in 3 months I doubt you'd want that same bike for commuting.
  • 04-09-2015
    Harold
    I'm not as thrilled with that Moto Ti bike as some other folks here seem to be. While the frame on that one will probably be better than a cheap alu frame from the same folks, it's not going to exhibit the best characteristics that Ti bikes can exhibit.

    It could possibly get rather noodly in the rear end with a loaded rack on it. How a bike handles with a rack will depend in part on the materials it's made from, and in part on its intended use. A touring frame will generally be built to ride well with a load. Something with rack braze-ons that's intended for something else might not. Ti can be rather flexy (as can steel) and may be really flexy, or it may be overbuilt to handle a rack with a load. Since it's a cross bike, and not a touring bike, I'm going to expect that it's not built to handle a load the way a touring bike would.

    While I like the 11spd 105 group, and the way it shifts, keep in mind that the wheels on BD's bikes are generally junk. They hide a lot of their cost savings there.

    I agree that this is an odd selection simply because you don't like the rack you tried on your mtb. I'm all for having a dedicated commuter bike, but to jump to a shiny Ti cross bike? Why not try a dedicated commuter with a lower budget impact? I rode repurposed mtb's as commuters for years. They served quite well.
  • 04-09-2015
    Kleebs
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    I'm not as thrilled with that Moto Ti bike as some other folks here seem to be.

    You got me. I had been looking at that bike as a dedicated cross bike, so I saw the OP mention it and my vision got all hazing, with visions of muddy hairpins and run ups in my head.:thumbsup:
  • 04-09-2015
    Harold
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Kleebs View Post
    You got me. I had been looking at that bike as a dedicated cross bike, so I saw the OP mention it and my vision got all hazing, with visions of muddy hairpins and run ups in my head.:thumbsup:

    It definitely becomes more attractive at the price if you're looking for a starter cross bike...so long as you figure that you'll have to replace the wheels before long after the abuse they get during a typical cross season.
  • 04-09-2015
    Ominous
    I guess I should of given a bit more info. My Niner has no provisions for a rack at all. Hence the Thule which would probably work great if the stays were straight. I have also been meaning to purchase a road bike for awhile now to compliment my park/trail and xc bike, so the bike will be used for more than just the commute, and was hoping for something a bit more spritely than a dedicated tourer. I was leaning towards Steel because I love the way the Niner rides (admittedly though its the only steel bike Ive ridden) but didn't come across much (was trying to keep the purchase at about 1250). Which then led me to bikes direct, and said bike (couldn't find a steel version). Im not too worried about shop support, I do my own wrenching. I guess Im too sure what makes a good "commuter".

    That being said I also came across

    2015 Weekender Drop | Fairdale Bikes

    Any opinions?
  • 04-09-2015
    Carton
    Never heard of Fairdale bikes before, but that seems like a pretty good spec and the website is much nicer and more polished than BD's. The 1x10 long cage RD with the 42t chainring seems like an awesome combo for a commuter. And the 37mm Contis (with what seems to be ample space for guards) and BB7s check the other important boxes for me.

    However, I've actually seen good things posted about the BD Ti frames, and if (and only if) you're comfortable with doing your own wrenching they're hard to beat value-wise. I would also doubt the rims on the Fairdale are any better than WTB TCS ChrissCrosses on the BD, so wheels perhaps a future upgrade area on both bikes. Both are great options for a commuter, IMHO, particularly if you value comfort and/or face some rough roads/potholes.
  • 04-09-2015
    Harold
    I'm not concerned with the rims. Rims are cheap and it's hard to find a truly garbage one anymore. My concern on the BD bike is going to be the hubs.

    Never heard of Fairdale, either. For commuting, I like that bike better than the Ti cross bike. Hubs still look like junk, but I think the geometry on it works better. Big thing to worry about with aggressive bikes and rear racks is that you'll be more likely to have heel clearance issues on them. That was a problem I had on the first frame I used for a dedicated commuter bike. It wasn't my only problem, but it was one of them. The Fairdale is a little bit longer and less aggressive, but is not quite as relaxed as a touring frame would be. Should be a bit more spritely. I also think the gearing selection on that one makes a lot of sense for a commuter. VERY similar to the way I built my commuter in its 2nd iteration.

    A cross frame or aggressive road bike can make a fine commuter, but not so much with a rack and panniers. They'd do better with a backpack. If you want a rack and panniers, you need something a little longer and less aggressive.
  • 04-09-2015
    Rustedthrough
    The Fairdale looks like another nice bike, more confidence inspiring than the Motobecane somehow. You might also consider the Jamis Bosanova in the same price range, similar design and features.

    JAMIS BICYCLES
  • 04-09-2015
    Rustedthrough
    The more I think about that Fairdale and its design, the more I like it. Heel clearance on the panniers might be an issue, as it is with my 2014 Bosanova. As the Fairdale has mounts for a rack and fenders, a rack with some extra set back is an simple solution.

    What kind of elevations do you have over your commute? Have you pedaled much of the new commute on your Niner SS without the rack and panniers?
  • 04-10-2015
    Kleebs
    Its a bit out of your $1250 price range, but if you can swing it, I think the Breezer Beltway Elite is what I would consider an ideal all weather commuter (full disclosure: I've never ridden it.) The MSRP is about $1600 but it includes a lot of things you would otherwise buy aftermarket like full fenders, a rack, dynamo front and rear lights, and a kickstand if you use that kind of thing. The Breezer is another bike I've been lusting over, even though I just spent a bunch of money on my beater commuter to upgrade the derailleur, shifter, rear hub, handlebar, stem....sigh.
  • 04-10-2015
    owensjs
    I've got around a month on a Fairdale Weekender built as a commuter, myself. I bought the frameset and did a ground up build with 29er MTB wheels, 35c commuter tires, 1x9 with narrow wide ring, BB7's, etc... It's a super comfortable bike and relatively spritely overall. I'm a fan of it, for sure.