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Here is the deal... Still considering making a commute by bike. Considering a commuter (probably the Cannondale Road Warrior series) or a performance road bike.

The commute will be about 20 miles if I ride the whole thing, or I would be able to catch the light rail at about 10-12 miles into the ride and that puts me off right by work. The ride will be mostly downhill to work and obviously mostly uphill back.

I have to take a uniform and boots to work.... so I will either need some kind of rack or a big sealline urban backpack or something of that nature.... so I am not sure how that would work with a straight road bike. (come to think of it i may be able to leave my boots at work).

The only other thing is, I have been wanting to get into road biking for a while. Right now I just mountain bike. So as far as that goes I kind of want a road bike to ride (not just during the commute).... but I could see how geometry of a road bike and trying to carry work clothes/boots etc. could be a pain.

Any advice?

If I hit the lotto I will just buy both bikes. Well, I guess Id quit work and buy a straight road bike. But, point being I cant afford both now.
 

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For a longish commute I don't think flat bars give enough hand positions, especially if you're on nice open road (not in city streets the whole time)

My vote is for drop bars in a 'cyclocross' position: 10mm higher and 10mm shorter than your road bike. This gives you a bit of security in traffic but you can still get on the drops and give er some stichk when you've got a nice tailwind :thumbsup:
 

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If your ride is on pavement, and you want to start riding a road bike, get a road bike. Put a rack on it, get some panniers. Leave the boots at work if you can, and you won't have so much to carry.

I could see how geometry of a road bike and trying to carry work clothes/boots etc. could be a pain.
This concern is totally unfounded. People do loaded touring on road bikes with racks, carrying much bigger loads than you're talking about. Lots of people do commutes of 20 miles or more on a road bike.

Get a bike you like, and get on the road. A road bike is the right tool for a ride of that distance on paved roads. Cross bikes are all the rage at the moment, and they have their uses, but if you're riding on roads, you usually want a road bike.
 

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A lot depends on the kind of road you're riding on your commute. If it's open road, then drop bars are fine. If you're doing heads up riding with a lot of city traffic, I way prefer upright bars. I don't like to have to lift my head to see what's coming. For this kind of riding I actually prefer a mountain bike, set up with nice 2" semi slicks, and a Nitto Albatross or Dove bar. I have nothing against road bikes, for long treks, they're the best tool for the job.
But I think it's way easier to convert a MTB (especially an older, rigid fork one, with eyelets for rack and fenders) into a general purpose commuter that'll serve varying conditions better than a roadie will.
 

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urnicus said:
Here is the deal... Still considering making a commute by bike. Considering a commuter (probably the Cannondale Road Warrior series) or a performance road bike.

The commute will be about 20 miles if I ride the whole thing, or I would be able to catch the light rail at about 10-12 miles into the ride and that puts me off right by work. The ride will be mostly downhill to work and obviously mostly uphill back.

I have to take a uniform and boots to work.... so I will either need some kind of rack or a big sealline urban backpack or something of that nature.... so I am not sure how that would work with a straight road bike. (come to think of it i may be able to leave my boots at work).

The only other thing is, I have been wanting to get into road biking for a while. Right now I just mountain bike. So as far as that goes I kind of want a road bike to ride (not just during the commute).... but I could see how geometry of a road bike and trying to carry work clothes/boots etc. could be a pain.

Any advice?

If I hit the lotto I will just buy both bikes. Well, I guess Id quit work and buy a straight road bike. But, point being I cant afford both now.
leave those heavy shoes at work!
 

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For your distance, a road type bike is better. You must have a way to pack your things on the bike, not a backpack. They make you hot in the summer and mess with your balance all the time. Either pannier racks and bags or a BIG undersaddle bag like those offered by Carradice (not cheap, look around you'll find others.) Leave the boots at work.

The advantage of the big underseat bag is that it allows you to buy a bike without eyelets for attaching the rack. The need for eyelets severely limits the bikes you can buy. If you're shopping used, this will be a big plus.

You can get a rack which mounts on the rear hub/skewer, but they're a little heavy and I don't know what happens to them when you need to fix your rear flat.
 

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If you want to use it for more aggressive road riding as well as commuting check out a SOMA Smoothie ES or a Surly Pacer. Both have eyelets and both are a more aggressive geometry. If you fell you want a more relaxed commuter check out the SOMA Double Cross or a Surly Cross Check. If you want the ultimate in smooth handling and load carrying then go with a Surly Long Haul Trucker.

I have a SOMA Smoothie ES as well as a SOMA Double Cross. The Smoothie is setup fairly aggressively and it's a lot of fun to ride! The Double Cross is a good amount tamer and it's setup for touring/commuting. The Smoothie is a good amount more nimble and if I'm doing a group ride I'm usually on the Smoothie. If I'm running errands or carrying stuff its on the Double Cross. The Double Cross plays double duty a lot of the time though and I'll take it out on group rides as well.

I don't think you could go wrong with any of the bikes mentioned here.

Jared
 

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I also vote for the road bike, the different hand positions available with drop bars are nice when you're riding for several miles. A 'cross bike could be a good compromise, my Lemond Poprad has served me well.
 

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I used to do my 10-mile commute (each way) on a Specialized Crossroads with flat bars. It wasn't bad, but it did lead to some sore hands at times. Since I've gone to a Bianchi San Jose with drops, I am MUCH more comfortable at the end of the ride.
 
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