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Stupid article on the main website

alan_shermanalan_sherman Posts: 1,153
edited May 2016 in Commuting chat
A whole article on the best bike for cycle communting.... and it doesn't mention dutch style bikes at all!

I find myself lusting after a dutchie 8 speed as I waft along the tow path, in my suit, on my 5 mile commute.

Posts

  • cookeeemonstercookeeemonster Posts: 1,960
    :)

    The UK bike press is still very stuck for the most part on cycle commuting as a pared down version of cycle sport (or the weekend rides many people do) :)

    It is changing (even from the last 4 years I've been cycling) but it'll take a while I think
  • I agree - it seemed odd to omit the default bike for commuters in countries with utility cycling culture. For most people doing a couple of miles each way in a town/city, and stopping off at the shops on the way home to pick up groceries, a Dutch-style bike is perfect.

    As you say, it's because in the UK we are coming at this from a sports cycling perspective. The closest you could hope for in most bike shops is a hybrid with derailleurs with some mudguards and a rack as extras. Not quite the same as a fully enclosed chain with hub gears and brakes and built in lock and lights.

    Give it time and things might change but unfortunately we're not there yet.
    Never be tempted to race against a Barclays Cycle Hire bike. If you do, there are only two outcomes. Of these, by far the better is that you now have the scalp of a Boris Bike.
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,747
    I'm certainly noticing more 'non sporty' cycle commuters this year compared to previous years, probably about 1/3 of those I see (and that on a commute that isn't conducive to that sort of commuter being cross country and anyone going that way probably has a minimum 5 mile commute).

    We have a handful at work who cycle 1-3 miles in everyday clothes for who a dutch style bike would be ideal.
  • ddraverddraver Posts: 20,372
    A whole article on the best bike for cycle communting.... and it doesn't mention dutch style bikes at all!

    I find myself lusting after a dutchie 8 speed as I waft along the tow path, in my suit, on my 5 mile commute.

    8-speed-Dutch-bike is an oxymorn...
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,286
    Our next door but one neighbour works part time as a teaching assistant at the primary school just a mile away. She got a Dutch style bike on the cycle to work scheme or something similar. Perfect for that kind of journey. When it was brand new she went on holiday and asked us to look after it while she was away. Christ! I nearly gave myself a hernia heaving it into the shed! We live up a hill, and with the momentum that thing must build up she must have a fair chance of freewheeling most of the way to work. Mind you, I've never seen her riding it back up the hill :D
  • alan_shermanalan_sherman Posts: 1,153
    I live up a hill from the river - hence the desire for gears!

    I do wonder about a lighter dutch style bike though. I ride a hybrid (Giant with slight riser bars), which isn't too heavy but is pretty robust. I would however like to be more upright for the easy cycling. Most dutch bikes are very heavy, i wonder if there is a gap in the market.

    So the spec would be:
    Aluminium frame, with a slack head angle and high front end.
    Alu dutch style bars, stem, seatpost.
    Wheels based around a dynohub and hub gear with disk brakes. Probably shimano
    Potentially a belt drive
    Racks and guards, not too heavy.

    I reckon should be doable under 15kg
  • My wife has an Apollo Elysse which suits her very well for pottering around town, and which has made it on 30 mile trips up Loch Lomond amongst other places. As she likes this style of bike, the intention is to upgrade the various bits of it as they wear out. First to go will be the six speed freewheel and twist shifters.
    Carrera Subway 2015
    Boardman Hybrid Team 2014
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,550
    Part of the clue in Dutch-style is the word "Dutch" - apart from a few bridges, most of the country is pan-flat. Add to that the cycle path infrastructure and, in the cities, even the shopping infrastructure and, yes, these bikes make sense. In the UK, except maybe for cities like Cambridge (which always had these bikes) I'm not so sure.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • N0bodyOfTheGoatN0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 4,232
    I think there is a big gap in the market these days for a modern version of something like the Specialised Centrum Elite, 3-speed hub gear; hydraulic brakes; high-vis frame. Nearly bought one in 2009 in an end of year sale for less than £300.
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,959
    edited May 2016
    Part of the clue in Dutch-style is the word "Dutch" - apart from a few bridges, most of the country is pan-flat. Add to that the cycle path infrastructure and, in the cities, even the shopping infrastructure and, yes, these bikes make sense. In the UK, except maybe for cities like Cambridge (which always had these bikes) I'm not so sure.
    Ahh, but those bridges can be mighty!

    I wouldn't rule out many more UK cities than the likes of Cambridge though. It depends a bit on where you live. Most peoples journeys on such bikes are pretty repetitive. Leeds is a hilly old place and mostly entirely unsuited to Dutch bikes but, if you live along the Kirkstall Road, you can easily have quite a decent length of almost flat commute in to town. On that basis a Dutch bike would work perfectly well but, of course, the vast majority of residents would have a lot more hill work than that.

    It does seem slightly deranged not to include Dutch bikes when, of all things, they do include mountain bikes!
    Faster than a tent.......
  • ddraverddraver Posts: 20,372
    The gap in the market only exists in the UK. Plenty of those over here. So much so that a bog standard road bike shop is considered far more niche - in fact they re probably no more common than in the UK

    The Dutch (Belgian and German) bike solution to hills by the way is an e-bike
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 22,788 Lives Here
    Surely for most people the best bike to commute on would be the bike they already have. For someone like my wife a battered old Dutch bike is the best thing because she rides to the station and leaves it locked up, then she can chuck some shopping in the basket if necessary on the way home.
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,550
    Yup - the problem with a Dutch bike is that it might do your A to B ride fine but it's bagger all use for anything else. We have the Cambridge equivalent hanging on the wall in my garage in the Highlands - it's been there 11 year after my wife realised it wasn't going to work (and she was laughed at). Most Dutchies treat their bike like you or I would treat a pair of wellies - totally utilitarian - they also don't spend much more that the cost of a (good) pair of wellies. I can understand this site not particularly talking up the Dutch bike as the people who are likely to frequent this site probably aren't the sort of people that think of a bike like a pair of wellies.

    Right - must get back to post on WellyRadar.com...
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 50,080 Lives Here
    Main problem with importing Dutch bikes is English bike mechanics can't handle them.
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,550
    Main problem with importing Dutch bikes is English bike mechanics can't handle them.

    From what I saw in AMS, nor can Dutch ones :lol:
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • I would be suggesting the Genesis Smithfield to my non-militant, plain-clothes cycling friends:

    http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/urb ... smithfield

    It's almost Dutch, almost British. No basket, though.
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,550
    I would be suggesting the Genesis Smithfield to my non-militant, plain-clothes cycling friends:

    http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/urb ... smithfield

    It's almost Dutch, almost British. No basket, though.

    Needs a basket and a chain guard and possibly some of those plastic guards for the rear wheel, a stand of some sort and, if it was Dutch, seats for two or maybe three kids...
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    I would be suggesting the Genesis Smithfield to my non-militant, plain-clothes cycling friends:

    http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/urb ... smithfield

    It's almost Dutch, almost British. No basket, though.

    Oh that is nice.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,959
    I would be suggesting the Genesis Smithfield to my non-militant, plain-clothes cycling friends:

    http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/urb ... smithfield

    It's almost Dutch, almost British. No basket, though.

    Needs a basket and a chain guard and possibly some of those plastic guards for the rear wheel, a stand of some sort and, if it was Dutch, seats for two or maybe three kids...

    And I doubt it has a coaster brake either!

    It looks to me like a nice evolution of a British Shopper. Not much Dutch about it but that makes it more suitable for British roads anyway.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • alan_shermanalan_sherman Posts: 1,153
    Quite a good build, lacking dynamo lighting, and the position looks leaning forward rather than upright, bars with more backwards sweep might be good. Weight of just under 15 Kilos is good.
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