Here are the bikes I rode from my last 182 commutes to work. Basically -- this encompasses the calendar year 2011 of commutes. On a normal week, I ride to work M-Th. Friday is ride day. Friday-ride bikes are not noted here.
Here's a post from the last time I did this compilation in July 2010.
41 days - Elephant
This is a perfect commuter. It's super easy to just grab and go: integrated lights, fenders, rack. It's fast and nimble and is happy to oblige the trail-way-home on a whim.
This bike is being replaced by Elephant v2. More on that to come, but the elevator version: v2 will be pretty much the same, but with minor tweaks -- a tweak or two to satisfy Glen and a tweak or two to satisfy me.
The better news is that it looks like this v1 Elephant will become S&S'd a sort of communal travel bike. Stay tuned on that too.
39 days - Lyon "747"
This bike never gets the virtual ink it deserves on this blog. It's fast and wonderful and perfect handling. With integrated lights and fenders, it makes for a great fast commuter. I do not ride trails on this bike.
I put the soon-to-be-ubiquitous-on-most-of-my-bikes Campy 10 brifters (against 8 speed shimano/sram) on this bike since this picture was taken.
Since there's no rack on this bike, it turned out to be the one that forced me to discover that I'm more of a backback-person than a messenger bag-person.
This bike will be going on a diet this winter in preparation for more fast and long rides next spring and summer: the fenders and lights will go away, a lighter saddle and crankset will go on, and a tubular wheelset collecting dust in my garage will also go on it.
25 days -- MB-2
In the summer -- I strip it down and put super light-race tires on it and treat it like a BMX bike. Super fun for cruising, beering, or easy trail rides.
23 days -- RB-T
Ah the soulful RB-T. Alas, how I wish you could remain by my side old friend. But the Legolas just beat you down handily.
Combined with an old cast-iron tractor seat, this once-proud frame will be demoted to a stool at the river.
The RB-T is just fun -- not so much on wet/rainy days -- but for any ride that has some dirt and trail potential, the RB-T always stood ready to rock. I broke it. I bent it. Glen beat and welded it back into shape a number of times. I considered selling it, but Glen said no way. Thus, it shall be stoolified.
21 days -- TIE: Rawland and Legolas
|Jon on the Rawland.|
Another retired bike. With the arrival of my mountain bike, the Rawland quickly became dustier. It also overlaps in function with my Elephant (for long dirt-road/forest exploration) and to some extent, the CX bikes.
I still dig the Rawland and I think I'll horde the frame for a year or so to make sure I'm sure I don't want to ride it anymore. The thing I miss the most about it is having a fat-tired, drop-barred trails bike that handles like a road bike. With the disc brakes on there, it's a special frame for sure. I may revive it some day when drop-bar hydraulic brakes are available.
As a commuter, shod with Hetres, the Rawland just begged taking the rough route every time.
As for the Legolas, it's pretty much all I've commuted on since getting it built-up a couple months ago. It's altered my thinking on OS tubing and even front-end handling a bit. It's fast, it's fun, it's super capable. As a commuter, it's impossible to take the paved way every time with this bike. I'm looking forward to racing it in next year's CX series.
9 days -- SH80
Just like in my last compilation, the SH80 falls nearly to the bottom of the heap -- this is a poor way to measure its usefulness. I only commute on the SH80 when I have a load to haul: P2P parts, t-shirts, etc. But with integrated lights and fenders and tons of cargo capacity, this bike is used for kid-hauling, grocery runs, and swap sessions on a regular basis.
3 days -- Salsa
Very rarely (3 days exactly), I get a notion to ride the mountain bike. On these days, it's because I want to take the long trail way home. I have big knobbies on it now so if I run into a big snow day this winter, I may give the Salsa a shot.