CYCLING

Commuting bike 101 – How to get started

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My commuting bike – a modified MTB prepared for the urban jungle 

Re-discovering cycling a few years ago felt awesome and pretty weird. I admit it – I’ve had spend far too many years without cycling… When I finally came back and made my first commuting trips on two wheels, the rush of happiness was incredible.

But I also felt completely overwhelms by the offer of bikes bike accessories, helmets lights and so on.

My ideal cycling bike would have to meet the following requirements:

  • Bring me fast and safe to the train station
  • Be strong and solid enough to cross the urban battlefields on my commuting route
  • Avoid any unwanted attraction from bike thieves…

My first try was a new bike from a large sports store. In order to avoid risks or make them more bearable I’ve choose one of the cheapest bikes I could find.

Spoiler alert: DON’T DO THAT 😉

As you can imagine, I soon found out that this heavy steel bike was equipped with low-quality components that made my commuting ride not that much fun.

The same happened with the rest of my cycling equipment… I’ve changed almost everything until I found a ideal combination for urban bike ninjas. A process that took me a lot of time and money, but definitely was worth it. I will post them in a detailed way in upcoming entries, so YOU don’t have to waste your time & money.

But let’s get us back to my commuting bike. I found out that the best fit for me was a second hand mountain bike. Second hand bikes have a lot of advantages, like a fair price, outdated designs and enough scratches and bruises to make them less attractive for thieves. Just make sure to check all the mechanical parts or ask your local bike shop for help.

I’ve made some changes to get the best commuting performance. A first steps was changing the mountain bike tires for a pair that met urban requirements. This means a low profile for asphalt racing, a double layer of rubber for rough grounds and reflector bands on the sides for an extra of road safety.

The next step was changing the original racing saddle for one bit more comfortable for my unpadded commuter pants. As a matter of caution, I’ve also changed the original quick release locks for safety bolts and added an additional spiral lock to the saddle.

Lights and reflective elements completed my commuting bike: VOILÁ – here we go 😉

Don’t spend time & money on making my mistakes…

Cycling & Tabi
Tabi -traditional Ninja footwear- and a vintage bike awaiting resoration… What a great combination

 

Enjoy the ride, Ninja!