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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With the advent of daylight savings time I'm back commuting. How great is that!. The bummer, however, is I've got fenders on my new Kona Jake the Snake cross bike and its looking as sad as my dog when I yell at him to get off the couch. Is it possible for a bike to look sharp in fenders?
 

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ALL bikes look good in fenders.

They look like you use them, like you ride them year round, like they're more than toys. What's not to like about that?
Why, yes, I DID just come in the house after putting fenders on my Atlantis....
 

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Resident Curmudgeon
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"Is it possible for a bike to look sharp in fenders? "

IMO, no. Having said that, my commuter is dressed in fenders year round.
 

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Baltic Scum
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All fenders are fugly.
They are also the single most important accessory hanging off of any commuter bike.
 

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road bike resurrector
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Only one bike has ever been produced that looked good with fenders, the 60's Schwinn Stingray Krate.

I have a blue reproduction with 36" apes, the bars are taller than the rest of the bike. :D
 

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eRacer
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IMO, Fenders are necessary for wet rides, but I don't think most bikes 'look' good with Fenders.
Functional - Yes
Wet Rides - Yes
Attractive - No
 

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my bike's underpowered
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When you comsider the whole package, the fendered bike w/ a clean rider looks a lot better than the alternative.

The simplest solution is to own multiple bikes. My problem is I have a clunker w/ fenders that I'm planning to upgrade - the monetary bleeding never ends.
 

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Eat fried chicken.
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RoadLoad said:
Is it possible for a bike to look sharp in fenders?
I used to think no. But I moved to Portland and fenders are essential. SKS are probably the best of the plastic ones. All my bikes are fendered, 2 with SKS and one with Berthouds. I've totally gotten used to the look. I feel a commuter looks naked and is impractical without them. It's unfortunate that more road bikes aren't made with eyelets and clearances for fenders.

Anyway, my Rambouillet looks good to me with fenders. And rides great.
 

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Captain Obvious
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yeah, it's possible.
 

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No it isn't!

Lifelover said:
This one is just a fluke!
I've been riding a black road bike with black fenders since '86. I've always thought it looked great. So have many who have lusted over it through the years. Fenders keep grime out of the seat tube when riding on wet roads. Otherwise the wet grime runs down the inside of the seat tube and collects in the bb, rusting the frame out. Front fender keeps water out of the headset bearings, too. I'm still using original headset after over 60,000 miles. I'm not making this up. Rain from above is clean and runs off. Wet roads are grimy and ruin the bike and threaten the health of the rider, when the crap from the road sprays up and you breathe it in. I'm mystified why so many are against fenders, especially for commuters.

Anybody heard of Alex Singer? He's been building custom bikes in Paris for years.
 

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I am in agreement with dfltroll that my commuter would look naked without fenders, and not in a good way as she is kind of old.

There are a lot of ugly and cheep looking fenders out there, but if you choose the style and colour carefully quite a few bikes will look better with fenders in my opinion.

But what do I know. I would probably add a chainguard to the commuter hoping to keep the salt off the chain and sprokets in winter if I could find a lightweight one. And damn the looks. Maybe next winter.
 

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ksanbon said:
When you comsider the whole package, the fendered bike w/ a clean rider looks a lot better than the alternative.

I dunno, I've seen several cyclists on some of the organized rides I've done in rainy weather that looked good in wet clingy lycra shorts and and a semi transparent jersey stuck to them.

Back to the question.... I think the general consensus here is that no, you can't look good with fenders but for a commuter bike they are very practical and my original comment aside it is nice to arrive as your destination without a coating of mud.

Bill
 

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Style is subjective. Period. Personally I think all those folks who want to be unique and hip by conforming to the same uniform of a single speed bike, knickers, a lock in their back pocket and an over-priced messenger bag are just as uncreative as any other bloke, and perhaps have unconsciously fallen into the identity-through-consumption trap. Do what works for you and enjoy your ride. Confidence and sincerity never go out of style.

I have a pair of Soma fenders and am very satisfied. My winter ride is an old road bike and the only fenders that fit are the sks strap-on racing fenders. In the rear they only cover as far as the break so I get some splash from the front of the tire. They work much better than those things that stick out from your seatpost (which are barely better than nothing at all). But full coverage fenders work the best and will keep a lot of road grime out of your gears.
 

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Lifelover said:
This one is just a fluke!



Not Mine (unfortunately)
Like people, some look best fully clothed. This bike looks timeless as Bogart in a trench coat and hat.
 

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Bikes can look great with fenders. If you don't think so, look at some of the photos posted at Cyclofiend.com and this thread on the Serotta forum:

http://www.serotta.com/forum/showthread.php?t=54613

http://www.cyclofiend.com/cc/all/index.html

A lot of cyclists seem to have this mindset that all bicycles must look like racers. Which is kind of absurd if you are using a bicycling for commuting, touring or other more practical purposes. It's not just fenders either. Why set up a bike for commuting or touring with skinny tires, carbon wheels and a huge handlebar drop?
 

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Burnum Upus Quadricepus
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It depends on what you're used to. When I started out I didn't like fenders at all. I got the strap-on ones so I could take them off when I didn't need them.

My dedicated commute bike came with them, and they sort of grew on me. It quickly became a non-issue on club rides when they found I could hang with the group despite my rack, lights and fenders.

This past November I put fenders on my fair weather fun bike, so I could ride it more often in the winter. Looking at it now, I think it will look naked without them. I know my commuter does.

In case you missed this, how about Levi Leipheimer's 18 lb, custom-built CF rain bike with SRAM Red, wireless powermeter, disc brakes and fenders?



Article here: A fendered bike is a happy bike
 

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I used to think my communter looked better (and faster) naked then I put on a set of SOMA fneders and have grown to really like the look. Something very functional and utilitarian about it.
My buddy has a set of wooden fenders on his bianchi and it looks really nice
 
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