New Commuter Bike

December 15, 2011

This time last year I took a new job that was further from home. I had got used to commuting by bicycle to my old job a few times a week. It was a nice ride, it took me about 30 minutes each way, was good exercise, and allowed Andrea and I to get away with only one car. Once the weather got nicer this summer I started commuting to my new work by bicycle. The distance is 24 km each way, and takes about 50 minutes in each direction. It’s longer time wise than driving but not having to deal with the frustrations of other drivers made my ride much more enjoyable. It helped me keep in shape, and saved us a bunch of cash.

I was riding a bike that was kindly donated to me, which I think was a 2003 Kona Jake cyclocross bike. I had added slick tires and fenders, and the bike proved to be reliable and efficient. Over the course of the year I owned the Kona I covered over 4000 km. What I didn’t like however was the ageing drive train and the fact that the brakes didn’t work. Slowly I started thinking I should purchase a new commuter bike. I was thinking I’d make the effort to ride as much through the winter as possible and for that to happened I’d need some half decent brakes. As far as I’m concerned rim brakes don’t work, so I was convinced I needed disc brakes. A large portion of my commute is through the flats of Richmond, which is notoriously windy. As such I wanted drop bars so when it was windy I’d be able to hunker down and get out of the wind as much as possible. After some research online I was tossed between the following two bikes:

  1. 2012 Specialized Crux Comp Disc
  2. 2012 Norco CCX 2

The irrational side of me really wanted the Crux. It was a carbon frame, and had nicer bits. It was also near double the price of the CCX. Since I was just using this bike as a tool to get to work and back I thought I’d get the sensible choice and purchase the CCX. So far I’ve put in 500 happy kilometres on the CCX and thoroughly enjoying it. The brakes are a vast improvement over rim brakes, the drive is new and crisp, and the frame is much more comfortable than the old Kona.

My 2012 Norco CCX 2 commuter bike

Funnily enough this now means that I started 2011 with a Trek Session 88, Santa Cruz Nomad and Kona Jake, and end 2011 with a straight flush of Norcos; an Aurum, a Range and a CCX 2. To that I couldn’t be happier.