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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
MTB vs road bike for commuting through the city

I tried both and kind of like my road bike more, but was worried that the stress of the broken asfault and the rough pavement (times when traffic is too bad so go on the sidewalk for safty) would do damage to the road bike (all steel Lemond, Buenos Aires)

Or since I've been using the road bike for a week of commuting so far with no real issues (wheel is still true) I shouldn't expect any?

Thanks

BTW this is Baltimore City I'm talking about
 

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Flat bar road

enki42ea said:
I tried both and kind of like my road bike more, but was worried that the stress of the broken asfault and the rough pavement (times when traffic is too bad so go on the sidewalk for safty) would do damage to the road bike (all steel Lemond, Buenos Aires)

Or since I've been using the road bike for a week of commuting so far with no real issues (wheel is still true) I shouldn't expect any?

Thanks

BTW this is Baltimore City I'm talking about
I sold my road bike on Craigslist and got a flat bar road bike to commute into Silver Spring. It's zippier than a mtb (or hybrid), has the agility of a road bike, but the upright riding position (and I think more control in tight spaces and slow speeds like sidewalks) of the mtb. Best of both worlds.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The flat bar of my montain bike seems to hurt my palms where on the hoods or drops my hands are fine on the road bike. So for the bar I'd rather use a road bar.

But I'm guessing you use normal road bike wheels/tires? Thats the main thing along with frame strength I'm worried about
 

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you are seriously underestimating the strength of a quality road bike. watch some videos of the classics; paris-roubaix, le ronde, etc... that will open your eyes in a big way. the crux of the biscuit is a well built pair of wheels, shod with some decently wide tires. you've got a good frame, no worries there.
 

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Ride the Lemond. It won't break. You've obviously noticed that the pedaling is easier with the roadie, too. As mentioned above, though, it is a good idea to get your handlebars as high as reasonably possible on a commuter bike. It makes it easier to see.
 

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Old steel frame MTB with no suspension, slick tires, or at least as few knobs as possible, Moustache bar, really good brakes, and either a Brooks B-67 or B-17. And just to make sure it irritates the bike snobs on their beauteous carbon, a kickstand.

That just what I see in my head for the perfect commuter.
 

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slowmo1 said:
Old steel frame MTB with no suspension, slick tires, or at least as few knobs as possible, Moustache bar, really good brakes, and either a Brooks B-67 or B-17. And just to make sure it irritates the bike snobs on their beauteous carbon, a kickstand.

That just what I see in my head for the perfect commuter.
Well, that is one of my commuter bikes to a tee (except you forgot the fenders and streamers). For the original poster, i tend to be a "run what ya brung" kinda guy, but i can see the merit of having different styles of bikes for different styles of commuting. I have 2 bikes i commute on. My ghetto looking (but still a great bike) mtb, and my fairly nice, if not eclectic bianchi cross bike. If i'm going to lock up anywhere, the cheap mtb goes (operating word being cheap - could be road or mtn), if i'm going to work with a locker or simply someplace "secure", the cross bike goes.

How theftable is your commute? As far as strength goes, the above doesn't really address that, but road bikes are plenty strong as well! (sorry for the repeat information)

-Damon
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks all, guess I'm just overly paranoid not knowing if the bumps and all will cause problems since I know the mountain bike is much stronger. About the only thing I like about the mountain bike is the disc brakes working so much better then the ultegra 6500 brakes.

As far as theftability I ride straight from home to work and back. At work its right next to my desk so no issues there. So I'd only need to worry about being mugged.
 

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enki42ea said:
Thanks all, guess I'm just overly paranoid not knowing if the bumps and all will cause problems since I know the mountain bike is much stronger. About the only thing I like about the mountain bike is the disc brakes working so much better then the ultegra 6500 brakes.

As far as theftability I ride straight from home to work and back. At work its right next to my desk so no issues there. So I'd only need to worry about being mugged.
If you're worried, buy or build up a nice, beefy wheelset with tires as fat as your frame will allow. Your steel frame is plenty strong enough to absorb all the punishment you would normally encounter on an urban commute, not inlcuding getting doored, riding over an uncovered manhole, etc.

Yours,

FBB
 

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Strong Wheelset

fbagatelleblack said:
If you're worried, buy or build up a nice, beefy wheelset with tires as fat as your frame will allow.
Something like this, which seems to be quite a good bargain as well:

http://tinyurl.com/pge5q

I may have to buy a set of these myself, but don't tell the wife...

- FBB
 

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You say that like Baltimore is so bad! Check out Arby's posts for skinny tire Baltofun or his website www.phattire.net

In the past I have used both bikes and found both to be fine. MarkS commutes by road bike to downtown Bmore too.
 

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enki42ea said:
I tried both and kind of like my road bike more, but was worried that the stress of the broken asfault and the rough pavement (times when traffic is too bad so go on the sidewalk for safty) would do damage to the road bike (all steel Lemond, Buenos Aires)

Or since I've been using the road bike for a week of commuting so far with no real issues (wheel is still true) I shouldn't expect any?

Thanks

BTW this is Baltimore City I'm talking about
Downtown Baltimore has some seriously needy roads, but that LeMond should be plenty sturdy for just about anything. If you want to cushion the ride a little, try going up a size (width) in tires--say, from a 23 to a 25--and dropping the pressure a little bit accordingly. The steel frame should be fine either way, but your own frame might be happier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
fbagatelleblack said:
Something like this, which seems to be quite a good bargain as well:

http://tinyurl.com/pge5q

I may have to buy a set of these myself, but don't tell the wife...

- FBB
Is that the same as this:
http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/12...o-Ultegra-Wheelset-w_-Mavic-Open-Pro-Rims.htm

(from googling seems like the ones with 36 in the rear are 32 in the front)

Sort of want just one set of wheels so don't want anything too heavy.(i.e. to keep up on club rides) I still have the stock Bontrager Select wheels the bike came with and they are still true with no ajustments to them (have 24 spokes in the rear and 20 in the front) with at least 2000 miles on them.
 

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Baltimore Commuting

I commute to work in Downtown Baltimore two or three days per week, all year around. I started commuting on my Trek 5200. The bike had no ill effects, but I did break a spoke once on my Mavic Ksyriums (they were still under warranty so I got a new one for free). At a certain point I realized that I probably should get a bike dedicated to commuting. I now ride a Lemond Poprad (cyclocross bike) with the stock wheels that came with my Trek 5200 (old Rolfs). I have had no problems and the wheels only needed to be trued after I was hit by a car (another story). I have 23 mm tires. I have considered 25 mms, but I don't think that they will make much of a difference.

The bad condition of Baltimore's streets is not to be underestimated. RBR regular Funknuggets visited last summer and remarked that the streets looked and felt like they had been bombed in a war. If you commute after dark, it is important to know where significant potholes are -- even with good lights, sometimes potholes can catch you unaware in the dark. Also, watch out for old streetcar tracks and sewer grates that are oriented the wrong way. What is your commuting route?
 

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enki42ea said:
Is that the same as this:
http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/12...o-Ultegra-Wheelset-w_-Mavic-Open-Pro-Rims.htm

(from googling seems like the ones with 36 in the rear are 32 in the front)

Sort of want just one set of wheels so don't want anything too heavy.(i.e. to keep up on club rides) I still have the stock Bontrager Select wheels the bike came with and they are still true with no ajustments to them (have 24 spokes in the rear and 20 in the front) with at least 2000 miles on them.
You kind of have to decide what you want from your bike. If you want to keep up on club rides, then the steel bomber with armageddon proof wheels may be out of the question. I ride a cheap steel frame with a heavy duty wheelset and 28mm tires. I was commuting on a MTB for a while, but found that I could set up a road bike commuter with the same dimensions as my race bike and use my commuting for training. Say what you will about training with heavy wheels, but the lighter wheels on my Pego feel effortless in comparison.
 
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