Forum home Commuter cycling forum Commuting general

Best bike for commuting?

axsirlotlaxsirlotl Posts: 13
edited November 2017 in Commuting general
I commute about 2.5 miles to my gym every day, I'm looking at buying a road bike so that I can also use it when I go to university, but at the moment I'm using it just for this short commute.
So I'm probably going to buy one of these:
1) https://www.decathlon.co.uk/triban-100- ... 77732.html

2) https://www.decathlon.co.uk/triban-500- ... 06187.html

So basically I'm not sure which to buy, idk if those are good choices for someone getting into road cycling so if anyone has any more suggestions then I'd appreciate it.

Posts

  • wolfsbane2kwolfsbane2k Posts: 3,039
    I had a 500se for 6 months (~2k miles) before I had some issues with the bottom brackets & wheels primarily due to my weight, or so they said. Tyre clearance is a problem, as are no proper mudguard mounts.

    For that distance is a roadie the best route, or would a town bike be better; wider clearance, something like the hoprider,or elops.
    Much more 'utility' driven.
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
    Bike 1 (Broken) - Bike 2(Borked) - Bike 3(broken spokes) - Bike 4( Needs Work) - Bike 5 (in bits) - Bike 6* ...
  • I had a 500se for 6 months (~2k miles) before I had some issues with the bottom brackets & wheels primarily due to my weight, or so they said. Tyre clearance is a problem, as are no proper mudguard mounts.

    For that distance is a roadie the best route, or would a town bike be better; wider clearance, something like the hoprider,or elops.
    Much more 'utility' driven.

    I'm fairly new to cycling (I use a mountain bike to get to the gym every day, that's it) so I'm not sure whether a road bike would be a good buy. The reason why I was looking at road bikes is because (from what I've seen) they're faster than mountain bikes (meaning that I'd spend less time riding to the gym but also to anywhere else I wanted to go), I'd like to get into commuting by bike when I go to university and also because I think I'd like to get into road cycling because I like sports n stuff. I don't know if these are good enough reasons to get a road bike though.
  • Out of your 2 choices, go for the 100, it’s a great commuter bike, and mechanically simple ( it’s only got one chainring and no front mech to worry about, for example).
  • wolfsbane2kwolfsbane2k Posts: 3,039
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    I had a 500se for 6 months (~2k miles) before I had some issues with the bottom brackets & wheels primarily due to my weight, or so they said. Tyre clearance is a problem, as are no proper mudguard mounts.

    For that distance is a roadie the best route, or would a town bike be better; wider clearance, something like the hoprider,or elops.
    Much more 'utility' driven.

    I'm fairly new to cycling (I use a mountain bike to get to the gym every day, that's it) so I'm not sure whether a road bike would be a good buy. The reason why I was looking at road bikes is because (from what I've seen) they're faster than mountain bikes (meaning that I'd spend less time riding to the gym but also to anywhere else I wanted to go), I'd like to get into commuting by bike when I go to university and also because I think I'd like to get into road cycling because I like sports n stuff. I don't know if these are good enough reasons to get a road bike though.

    Ah, ok , so already a rider with some fitness.
    Road bikes can be faster because they are normally lighter than an MTB, and the bigger wheels means they roll a bit better.

    How much of the gearing on your MTB do you use? The 100 is, as milemuncher1 put it, simpler, but that comes with reduced gearing. if it's flat, then the 100 should be enough, but if not, you might want the 500se's triple. Equally, the 100's gear shift location is (in my mind) less flexible than the 500se's - after braking, you'll have to shift your hands off the brakes to shift down again, something that I don't like the idea of.

    Single -Ratio 1.43: 3.46,
    Triple: Ratio 1.21: 4.21
    http://gears.mtbcrosscountry.com/#700c/ ... 5I1471I673

    100's an extra kilo heavier (not including pedals).
    However, 100 comes with 32c tyres so has more clearance for comfort - better for compact/gravel too ( I'd missed that in my earlier read). Photo looks like it's got quite a lot of space for guards, so can probably stick to 32c and a full guard - a definite bonus over the 500se for a commuter.

    I'd take them both out and given them a ride, see how they feel, and ask about guards and stuff.

    In my eyes, the 100 looks a better equipped bike for the money, and I'd have likely got one over the 500se if I was in the same place as you, purely for the wider tyres.
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
    Bike 1 (Broken) - Bike 2(Borked) - Bike 3(broken spokes) - Bike 4( Needs Work) - Bike 5 (in bits) - Bike 6* ...
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    For 2.5 miles I wouldn't have thought a road bike would be all that faster than a mountain bike to be honest.

    It would depend on whether you would be looking to take up road riding IMO. If not I'd just get a hybrid that you'd be happy leaving locked up. If you are then I'd probably look at spending a bit more anyway.

    I was having a nose in evans at the Pinnacle hybrids just, they look good VFM.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 60,997 Lives Here
    Anything under 20 mins.

    home-slide-01.jpg
  • Personally, for 2.5 miles I'd be walking or running to the gym.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • Personally, for 2.5 miles I'd be walking or running to the gym.

    It takes about 50 minutes to walk there, not enough time ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • Anything under 20 mins.

    home-slide-01.jpg

    Are there advantages to these bikes over road bikes for commuting?
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 60,997 Lives Here
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    Anything under 20 mins.

    home-slide-01.jpg

    Are there advantages to these bikes over road bikes for commuting?

    Yes. Comfort, no need to change attire.

    Stick panniers on the back and it can carry a lot too.
  • AxSirlotl wrote:
    I had a 500se for 6 months (~2k miles) before I had some issues with the bottom brackets & wheels primarily due to my weight, or so they said. Tyre clearance is a problem, as are no proper mudguard mounts.

    For that distance is a roadie the best route, or would a town bike be better; wider clearance, something like the hoprider,or elops.
    Much more 'utility' driven.

    I'm fairly new to cycling (I use a mountain bike to get to the gym every day, that's it) so I'm not sure whether a road bike would be a good buy. The reason why I was looking at road bikes is because (from what I've seen) they're faster than mountain bikes (meaning that I'd spend less time riding to the gym but also to anywhere else I wanted to go), I'd like to get into commuting by bike when I go to university and also because I think I'd like to get into road cycling because I like sports n stuff. I don't know if these are good enough reasons to get a road bike though.

    Ah, ok , so already a rider with some fitness.
    Road bikes can be faster because they are normally lighter than an MTB, and the bigger wheels means they roll a bit better.

    How much of the gearing on your MTB do you use? The 100 is, as milemuncher1 put it, simpler, but that comes with reduced gearing. if it's flat, then the 100 should be enough, but if not, you might want the 500se's triple. Equally, the 100's gear shift location is (in my mind) less flexible than the 500se's - after braking, you'll have to shift your hands off the brakes to shift down again, something that I don't like the idea of.

    Single -Ratio 1.43: 3.46,
    Triple: Ratio 1.21: 4.21
    http://gears.mtbcrosscountry.com/#700c/ ... 5I1471I673

    100's an extra kilo heavier (not including pedals).
    However, 100 comes with 32c tyres so has more clearance for comfort - better for compact/gravel too ( I'd missed that in my earlier read). Photo looks like it's got quite a lot of space for guards, so can probably stick to 32c and a full guard - a definite bonus over the 500se for a commuter.

    I'd take them both out and given them a ride, see how they feel, and ask about guards and stuff.

    In my eyes, the 100 looks a better equipped bike for the money, and I'd have likely got one over the 500se if I was in the same place as you, purely for the wider tyres.

    My MTB technically has 5 gears that I use (it does have 3 gears on the left handle but I don't really use them, I haven't noticed a difference using them). I ride on mainly flat ground, there are two uphill bits which aren't that bad so I don't think that the range of gears would be an issue. The only problem I have is the position of the thumb shifter (basically in the middle of the handlebars) as I don't like the idea of having to change gear on the move going uphill without having to stop.
  • Mad_MalxMad_Malx Posts: 4,591
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    Anything under 20 mins.

    home-slide-01.jpg

    Are there advantages to these bikes over road bikes for commuting?

    My daughter has that exact bike because of her love of all things Continental.
    It weights more than she does and the brakes are awful (coaster rear, hub front). The skirt catches and rattles. The Dynamo is made out of Dutch cheese.
    On the plus side it will probably survive the best efforts of the Donald and Kim show.

    She loves it.
  • How long is the commute by MTB to the gym currently taking you?
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    Personally, for 2.5 miles I'd be walking or running to the gym.

    It takes about 50 minutes to walk there, not enough time ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    I could do 2.5 miles in well under 20 minutes and I'm mid 50s. Just call it the cardio bit.
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

    London Calling on Facebook

    Parktools
  • wolfsbane2kwolfsbane2k Posts: 3,039
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    My MTB technically has 5 gears that I use (it does have 3 gears on the left handle but I don't really use them, I haven't noticed a difference using them). I ride on mainly flat ground, there are two uphill bits which aren't that bad so I don't think that the range of gears would be an issue. The only problem I have is the position of the thumb shifter (basically in the middle of the handlebars) as I don't like the idea of having to change gear on the move going uphill without having to stop.

    Ok, so you've actually got a 15 speed MTB, (3 up front, 5 at rear), and you don't use the left hand 3, so you effectively stick to a 5 speed. That means your not really using much of the gearing range available to you - but being on the flat, that's not a surprise. However, not feeling the difference is odd - that's where the biggest jump in difference is.

    When riding, where is the left lever (or chain up near the cranks) normally?

    The gear position on the 100 appears to be set for thumb shift with hands on the top bars, - it's basically as you would be on the mtb, so you don't have to stop - you don't always ride on the hoods or drops, but since you can't reach the brakes while on the tops, it's not a normal riding position that's recommended ( see
    http://lovelybike.blogspot.co.uk/2012/0 ... ction.html for terminology of hand positions. )

    Which uni are you going to? How flat is it around there?

    You might find that sticking to your MTB and replacing the tyres with something a bit more "hybrid" will do you just as well, or go and have a look at your local bike recycling centre/charity, and see what second hand road bikes they have - you can get quite a lot of second hand bike for £200.
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
    Bike 1 (Broken) - Bike 2(Borked) - Bike 3(broken spokes) - Bike 4( Needs Work) - Bike 5 (in bits) - Bike 6* ...
  • defeverdefever Posts: 171
    You might find that sticking to your MTB and replacing the tyres with something a bit more "hybrid" will do you just as well, or go and have a look at your local bike recycling centre/charity, and see what second hand road bikes they have - you can get quite a lot of second hand bike for £200.

    This is a valid advice.

    How much are you willing to pay for a "new" bike?

    I think your initial choices from Decathlon are good, well done for doing the homework well. And thank you for pointing those models, I'm swaying towards getting a more modern road bike for commuting. But for cheap as my commute does my riding time and I don't intend to go for a leisure ride. So I've been looking at Decathlon for unethically cheap bike. That's another story.

    Why don't you get a cheap second-hand road bike (eBay, gumtree, Facebook, uni advert), if you're lucky the exact models that you put a link to, and see how you get on? Or really cheap, as Wolfsbane2k suggested, just get a pair of new wheels and inner tyre to swap. And see how you get on. That way you’ll know exactly what you want from a road bike and you have better idea what you want. And you haven’t lost much money.

    Or if you are on fairly flat terrain, why not find a secondhand single-gear bike (NOT "FIXED GEAR" aka FIXIE BIKES!)? It's fun, light, low maintenance and no gears to faff. I’d definitely want to try a single gear if I lived in flat-ish terrain. You get powerful legs quite quickly!

    Good luck with your search and keep us posted!
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 60,997 Lives Here

    Yes, if you're a man looking to date another man, it lets other men know. It will make it much easier to attract a guy.

    You must have bloody loved amsterdam then.
  • How long is the commute by MTB to the gym currently taking you?

    Maybe 15 minutes?
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    You might be able to shave a minute off that with a road bike.

    But honestly - run to the gym. That's going to take you 25 mins or so. And you've already warmed up.

    I'd stick with the bike you have - chances are that any nice road bike would get nicked at uni.
  • AxSirlotl wrote:
    My MTB technically has 5 gears that I use (it does have 3 gears on the left handle but I don't really use them, I haven't noticed a difference using them). I ride on mainly flat ground, there are two uphill bits which aren't that bad so I don't think that the range of gears would be an issue. The only problem I have is the position of the thumb shifter (basically in the middle of the handlebars) as I don't like the idea of having to change gear on the move going uphill without having to stop.

    Ok, so you've actually got a 15 speed MTB, (3 up front, 5 at rear), and you don't use the left hand 3, so you effectively stick to a 5 speed. That means your not really using much of the gearing range available to you - but being on the flat, that's not a surprise. However, not feeling the difference is odd - that's where the biggest jump in difference is.

    When riding, where is the left lever (or chain up near the cranks) normally?

    The gear position on the 100 appears to be set for thumb shift with hands on the top bars, - it's basically as you would be on the mtb, so you don't have to stop - you don't always ride on the hoods or drops, but since you can't reach the brakes while on the tops, it's not a normal riding position that's recommended ( see
    http://lovelybike.blogspot.co.uk/2012/0 ... ction.html for terminology of hand positions. )

    Which uni are you going to? How flat is it around there?

    You might find that sticking to your MTB and replacing the tyres with something a bit more "hybrid" will do you just as well, or go and have a look at your local bike recycling centre/charity, and see what second hand road bikes they have - you can get quite a lot of second hand bike for £200.

    My left gear is normally in the 2nd gear. If I go into the 1st or 3rd gear then my bike makes quite a racket (I don't know if that's healthy). None of the ones that I have applied for are particularly hilly. I'll have a look in some second-hand shops because my Dad bought my current bike about 20 years ago from cash converters and it's still doing quite well.
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    Probably needs adjustment and some lube. Or a new chain etc if it's 20 years old.
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

    London Calling on Facebook

    Parktools
  • wolfsbane2kwolfsbane2k Posts: 3,039
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    My left gear is normally in the 2nd gear. If I go into the 1st or 3rd gear then my bike makes quite a racket (I don't know if that's healthy). None of the ones that I have applied for are particularly hilly. I'll have a look in some second-hand shops because my Dad bought my current bike about 20 years ago from cash converters and it's still doing quite well.

    When you shift the left hand gears, does the chain move as well? The rattle's either from sticky cables, cross chaining, or badly set up upper and lower limits or a mixture of all three, so so sounds like your current bike could do with a check over. Is there a community bike centre nearby you can use?
    If not, a basic service will do, but if it's not been checked for 20 years, depending on use it might need a new chain/cassette - costs likely to be £35 for basic checkover - chain clean, oil & gear shifter fettling.
    Recommending a community place to avoid being "upsold" unnecessary stuff, especially if they can teach you how to do it.
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
    Bike 1 (Broken) - Bike 2(Borked) - Bike 3(broken spokes) - Bike 4( Needs Work) - Bike 5 (in bits) - Bike 6* ...
  • cooldad wrote:
    Probably needs adjustment and some lube. Or a new chain etc if it's 20 years old.

    Thanks for the advice. About running to the gym, is that a safe thing to do at like 5:30 in the morning? I'm a little nervous because I'm not exactly the toughest of dudes and I'm quite short, I feel quite safe on my bike :)
  • AxSirlotl wrote:
    My left gear is normally in the 2nd gear. If I go into the 1st or 3rd gear then my bike makes quite a racket (I don't know if that's healthy). None of the ones that I have applied for are particularly hilly. I'll have a look in some second-hand shops because my Dad bought my current bike about 20 years ago from cash converters and it's still doing quite well.

    When you shift the left hand gears, does the chain move as well? The rattle's either from sticky cables, cross chaining, or badly set up upper and lower limits or a mixture of all three, so so sounds like your current bike could do with a check over. Is there a community bike centre nearby you can use?
    If not, a basic service will do, but if it's not been checked for 20 years, depending on use it might need a new chain/cassette - costs likely to be £35 for basic checkover - chain clean, oil & gear shifter fettling.
    Recommending a community place to avoid being "upsold" unnecessary stuff, especially if they can teach you how to do it.

    I don't think the chain moves but I think that it should because there are 3 different size cranks. I don't know if my Dad has had it checked, but I can't remember the last time that I had it checked so I will go to Halfords or something to get some new parts and get it checked out.
    I don't know if there is a community bike centre near me but I know that Halfords can give my bike a checkup
  • wolfsbane2kwolfsbane2k Posts: 3,039
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    AxSirlotl wrote:
    My left gear is normally in the 2nd gear. If I go into the 1st or 3rd gear then my bike makes quite a racket (I don't know if that's healthy). None of the ones that I have applied for are particularly hilly. I'll have a look in some second-hand shops because my Dad bought my current bike about 20 years ago from cash converters and it's still doing quite well.

    When you shift the left hand gears, does the chain move as well? The rattle's either from sticky cables, cross chaining, or badly set up upper and lower limits or a mixture of all three, so so sounds like your current bike could do with a check over. Is there a community bike centre nearby you can use?
    If not, a basic service will do, but if it's not been checked for 20 years, depending on use it might need a new chain/cassette - costs likely to be £35 for basic checkover - chain clean, oil & gear shifter fettling.
    Recommending a community place to avoid being "upsold" unnecessary stuff, especially if they can teach you how to do it.

    I don't think the chain moves but I think that it should because there are 3 different size cranks. I don't know if my Dad has had it checked, but I can't remember the last time that I had it checked so I will go to Halfords or something to get some new parts and get it checked out.
    I don't know if there is a community bike centre near me but I know that Halfords can give my bike a checkup


    That would explain the noise - it's not actually shifting - that would explain the noise, and why you aren't noticing any difference! Likely a sticky cable then, which isn't a surprise if it's not been serviced/cleaned & oiled in that time. Expect a shop to try and upsell you new cables if they haven't been changed recently - and it's possible that they are needed.

    What part of the country are you? Ask Halfords for their free check-up service, rather than full service first, they can normally do that just by walking into the store. If they give you a massive list, stick it on here and/or ask at a second store - do find your LBS.

    So, potentially, your looking at new chain - parts are £10 chain (likely) , new inner cables ~£15, plus labour (~£35 for a service), and depending on state of hubs might include a hub service.
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
    Bike 1 (Broken) - Bike 2(Borked) - Bike 3(broken spokes) - Bike 4( Needs Work) - Bike 5 (in bits) - Bike 6* ...
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    What is the actual bike?
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

    London Calling on Facebook

    Parktools
Sign In or Register to comment.