Cheap commuter bike

Discussion in 'Bike buying advice' started by student_cyclist, Mar 22, 2008.

  1. student_cyclist

    student_cyclist New Member

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    Cheap commuter bike

    Price:

    I am looking for a commuter bike that is around $300 - $400. I know this price point is very low, but I can only keep this bike for a year and a half after which I need to give it away. Where I live, not many people buy nice bikes.

    My experience:

    Up to this point, I've only ever owned a $50 Walart special mountain bike. I've ridden my $50 walmart mountain bike hard, through snow, rain, ice, mud, sand and rain which froze in the mechanics and after all of that it still works fine albeit with a squeak. So it doesn't seem impossible that a ~$400 bike to do the same if not better. Now, however, I'm looking more for a commuting bike with higher quality. Due to my living situation I don't (and can't) own many tools or lubricants and I've never oiled my chain. I don't, however, have any problem with doing bike work or buying a small cheap tool or two, but I have to leave it all behind after a year and a half. The reason is that I go to school very far from home and everything I take needs to fit into suitcases which are already full.

    My requirements:

    It rains moderately where I live and I NEED a bike with fenders. Up to this point, every time it rains I wind up with a dirt covered back. I also would like (but could possibly live without) a bike rack becuase I will need to use the bike to go grocery shopping. While I know you can buy them separately, I don't have the knowledge to attach them. I could possibly get access to a place which has a lot of tools for one time attachment if the right bike doesn't have them. Any link to a guide on how to do this for complete newbies would be appreciated. Other than that, I'm not picky on weight or quality (though it should last me at least a year and a half). I have looked at several bikes by Giant, Trek, Special, and Kona but they're all very nice and expensive. I don't need that sort of expensive quality. I couldn't even find a Trek bike under $500. I really like the idea of a hybrid bike though and would like to have high pressure road tires for low rolling resistance. The bike should be about $300 without fenders or a rack and around $400 with both. The idea being, that with everything I don't want to spend over $400.

    What it will be used for:

    The bike will be used for commuting about 5 miles per day. It will need to jump a few curbs daily, but I'm usually gentle when I do it. It will be left outside so it should hold up well under adverse (mostly just rainy) weather.

    Thank you for any help.
     
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  2. gemship

    gemship New Member

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    A fold up bike may fit the bill nicely.
     
  3. student_cyclist

    student_cyclist New Member

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    Let me add one thing: When commuting, the bike doesn't need to be easily transportable. I don't need to carry it with me anywhere and there is more than ample room to lock it up wherever I go. A folding bike would work, but wouldn't I pay more for its ability to fold?
     
  4. referee54

    referee54 New Member

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    Giant bikes have the Sedona and the Cypress series, and Raleigh has the Passage series. i have been using a Raleigh C-200 to commute now for about five years. Not the most expensive bike in the world, but I did some upgrades and put on SPD pedals...

    Tim C.
     
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