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Old 11-14-2013, 02:05 PM   #1
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Default Commuter cycling thread; No fenders, no care.

Baggy clothing, toe-clips, Arcade Fire, disc brakes, riding without a computer, and getting dropped can all be discussed in here.

Stay out of the cycling manliness threads, please. That thread is pure and holy.
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Old 11-14-2013, 02:11 PM   #2
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Um toe clips? That's a bit too hard core there captain spandex.
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Old 03-28-2014, 11:26 AM   #3
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I've given up on trying to find a rim-brake pad which works well in cold and wet conditions, and have started looking for something with a disc or hub brake. Happened across the Schwinn 411 recently, and I am being seriously tempted by it:



It ticks all the right boxes. Disc brakes, internally-geared 5 speed rear hub (thus no derailleurs), looks fairly rugged, and that basket on the front is actually integrated into the handlebar. The space inside the triangle looks too small to accommodate my big U-lock with the stock mount*, but I could easily just hang it from the basket when riding.




The stock mount supplied by Kryptonite- it's quite clever:

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Old 03-28-2014, 11:28 AM   #4
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That front basket looks like a ******* tank. Like hustler could sit in it while you two ride off into the sunset together without bending it.
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Old 03-28-2014, 11:56 AM   #5
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Good timing for this thread, I should get a road bike for this summer so I can stop borrowing my neighbors.
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Old 03-28-2014, 12:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leafy View Post
That front basket looks like a ******* tank. Like hustler could sit in it while you two ride off into the sunset together without bending it.
Around here, beefy is good. The streets of Manhattan would destroy a fancy carbon-fiber road bike, assuming it didn't get stolen or stripped first. Around here, cheap and tough are what's called for. At about $340, the 411 is a little pricier than I'd like, but if that's what I have to pay in order to get usable brakes, then so be it.

What I'd *REALLY* like is to find a kit that will let me cheaply retrofit internal hub brakes into the red 7-speed Schwinn pictured above with the vacuum cleaner strapped to the back of it. Does anybody even make such a thing? Seriously, I love every single thing about that bike except for the brakes.
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Old 03-28-2014, 12:59 PM   #7
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Buy a wheelset with the brakes/hubs you want and weld/braze/jbweld some caliper tabs onto the frame?
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Old 03-28-2014, 02:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Buy a wheelset with the brakes/hubs you want and weld/braze/jbweld some caliper tabs onto the frame?
By the time I purchase all the parts and pay someone to braze a tab onto the fork, I'll have spent more than the 411 would cost.

And it'd still be a hack that I can't easily reproduce on the next bike after this one is stolen.

I want a simple, store-bought solution. If I have to pay some money for that, I will. Just exploring options right now. It seems odd that nobody makes a simple front hub brake that I can buy for $25 and take to a LBS to have re-threaded into my existing rim.

Or, is there some other commuter bike out there which is cheaper and less visually appealing than the 411 which has hub or disc brakes already? I've seen a few that have a disc on the front and a rim brake on the rear. That might be an option.
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Old 03-28-2014, 04:05 PM   #9
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Don't forget the pants clips!

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Old 03-28-2014, 04:06 PM   #10
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That seems like its probably going to cost more than the 2 pieces of velcro that I stapled together to make the same thing.
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Old 03-28-2014, 04:30 PM   #11
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There's a much less hipster way to solve that problem. Let me show you a picture of my current bike taken from a slightly different angle:



Yes, I have a chainguard and a kickstand. Yes, I like them both very much.

FWIW, the 411 comes stock with this:



In most of the owner-pictures I see, it's been removed. No idea why people would want to do that; seems like the same mentality that makes people cut their valve cover to expose their timing belt and stock cam gears.

Ironically, the person who I sold my old turbo '92 to just recently sold it to someone else (after ******* it up horribly), and the new owner managed to track me down. He shared with me this picture:



The ****** painted the STOCK cam gears purple and cut the valve cover to expose them! (He also removed / fucked up a ton of other stuff under the hood, but that's a different matter...)

Pulling the chain guard off of a commuter bike offends me in much the same way.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:51 AM   #12
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Coming this spring to a subway platform near you, the creators of Shіtibiki and Shіtibike Resurrection bring you a riveting tale of cheapness beyond imagination. It's...

Shіtibike II: The Shіtening!





It followed me home.





Not quite identical twins, but close. On the left is the one I've had for about 6 months, which is private-labeled as "Admiral" and sold by WalMart. On the right is the new acquisition, branded as "Wayfarer" and sold by K-Mart. Both are Pacific Cycles bikes imported under the Schwinn brand. Same bike, different colors, and the K-mart one didn't come with a bell.

Interestingly, the rims on the black one appear to be un-painted, whereas the red one came with painted wheels that resulted in my spending several consecutive long evenings sitting on the sofa with a glass of reasonably-priced whiskey, tediously wet-sanding them down to bare metal. (Protip: even with $40 pads, painted rims are for **** if you're trying to stop in the rain.)


Currently in the process of doing the customary complete teardown / cleaning / re-greasing of all the major bearing assemblies. I've found that the Chinese war orphans who get paid 10 cents a day to assemble these don't bother wiping down all of the metal flakes / diamond dust / etc., that's used during the process of machining the bearing races.

Wheels were surprisingly not too bad in terms of straightness. .056 - .062" total runout front and rear.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:53 AM   #13
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The bars on the black one look heinously uncomfortable.
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Old 04-07-2014, 10:38 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leafy View Post
The bars on the black one look heinously uncomfortable.
They're not quite as horrible as you'd think in terms of comfort, but they are pretty bad in terms of controllability .

That's the stock handlebar that all of the Admiral / Wayfarer bikes come with- the red one had them too. It's faithful to the style and geometry of the 60s/70s era Schwinn Collegiate which this bike is a reproduction of:



(I'm just glad that the new one comes with linear-pull brakes and a twist shifter, as opposed to the suicide shifter and side-pull calipers on the original.)




I've ordered another of the same handlebar I put on the red bike to replace it- fits perfectly with the stock quill stem: Dimension Sweep 600 Riser Bar > Components > Handlebars and Stems > Mountain Bike Handlebars | Jenson USA Online Bike Shop



I use the 45mm rise, 24 sweep version. It yields a nice, wide bar that's slightly more stable and comfortable than a completely flat bar, but still very quick and controllable.
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Old 04-07-2014, 11:53 PM   #15
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Aaah, the wonderful aroma of clean, shiny ***** packed in fresh lube.





And the dilemma of the urban cyclist- the missus versus the mess:



(I do so miss having a well-appointed garage to work in...)
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Old 04-12-2014, 04:57 PM   #16
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Wheels look straight and true.
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Old 04-12-2014, 05:24 PM   #17
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LOL props.
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Old 04-12-2014, 05:26 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
The ****** painted the STOCK cam gears purple and cut the valve cover to expose them!
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Old 04-13-2014, 11:37 PM   #19
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I was assuming it was a panoram gone bad.
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Old 04-14-2014, 12:29 AM   #20
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Hehe. Low-light panorama shot hurredly.

Not much visible progress. The wheel and crank bearings are all cleaned, lubed, adjusted and re-assembled. This evening as I was heading home, one the pedals on the red bike froze up, so I had to steal one off this bike to replace it. My bad for not attending to it as soon as it started making noise. Protip: when you buy a cheap bike, you really do need to dismantle and rebuild ALL of the bearings- even the very small and seemingly trivial ones.

Still waiting for a few parts to arrive (tires, handlebar), but the most important one showed up on Friday. Decided to try a rigid, top-mounted basket as opposed to the folding, side-mounted basket that I've used on all the other bikes. The folding basket is nice for groceries (is holds one paper grocery bag exactly), but my backpack doesn't fit into it when I'm packed for a weekend excursion. Here it is roughly mocked-up on the red bike (which has the same rack as the black bike) just to get an idea of the fitment:

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