What's Your Commuter?

#42
I have a set of large and medium sized panniers from Ortlieb. I don't use them much except when I have a large load of stuff to haul. For my commute, I use a backpack for clothes, books and valuables, then I use an Arkel rack trunk for shoes, tools, and whatever else I can fit. Together, the backpack and trunk are just the right size for what I carry and with no pannier, it is a bit easier to maneuver through the turnstiles on cycle paths. The Arkel rack trunk has a neat rack that can attach and detach to the seatpost so it is easy to set up on my Cannondale on the days I choose to go with my road-ish bike that doesn't have eyelets for a rack.

My backpack often gets kind of heavy plus it's getting warmer now. That's why I want to try getting the weight off my shoulders during the commute.
I'll try different setups: all weight off the shoulders (panniers only) and splitting the weight - heavy stuff off the shoulders, light stuff in backpack (1 pannier + backpack).
I'm curious what will work best for me. But one thing I'm already looking forward to is using panniers for the grocery shopping on my way home.
 
Likes: Karl

dastott

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May 10, 2012
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Fukuoka
#49
There are a variety of routes, ranging from flat and coastal to inland and hilly (cat. 2 and cat. 3 climbs), between 65kms and 75kms one way. Not an everyday commute but there is some great scenery, especially on the coastal route. Much nicer than taking the train. Model is Merida Reacto 4000 2017 model (2nd generation). Very nice bike, quite popular in Japan but quite rare in western countries.
 

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stu_kawagoe

Maximum Pace
Jun 23, 2018
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#50
There are a variety of routes, ranging from flat and coastal to inland and hilly (cat. 2 and cat. 3 climbs), between 65kms and 75kms one way. Not an everyday commute but there is some great scenery, especially on the coastal route. Much nicer than taking the train. Model is Merida Reacto 4000 2017 model (2nd generation). Very nice bike, quite popular in Japan but quite rare in western countries.
That’s a nice bike! I actually looked at the Scultura 4000 a bit myself a while back. It’s funny they don’t get a lot of love in Europe/North America. My mate told me that Specialized and one of the Taiwanese manufacturers have big stakes in the company. I think he’s got one of their cyclocross bikes and loves it. Btw, lovely you get to do that commute!

Edit - I saw an interview with one of the Bahrain- Merida pro team mechanics and he actually said some of the riders were running the Reacto on hilly stages too. Surprised me that.
 

dastott

Maximum Pace
May 10, 2012
107
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Fukuoka
#51
Thanks Stu. Actually it’s the other way around, Merida make the Specialized bikes and took a 49% stake in the firm when the Big S couldn’t pay their bills. Giant, Merida and Quest Composites apparently make most the big name brand bikes like Trek, Canyon, Specialized etc.

The Reacto is a bit heavy but then so are many aero bikes like the Madone, System Six etc.
 
Likes: stu_kawagoe

stu_kawagoe

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#52
Thanks Stu. Actually it’s the other way around, Merida make the Specialized bikes and took a 49% stake in the firm when the Big S couldn’t pay their bills. Giant, Merida and Quest Composites apparently make most the big name brand bikes like Trek, Canyon, Specialized etc.

The Reacto is a bit heavy but then so are many aero bikes like the Madone, System Six etc.
Ah, yes, now I remember the story properly🙏

It’s funny about the weight as the Scultura 4000 is only few hundred grams lighter as the climbing bike.
 

dastott

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#53
It’s the power of branding. Merida has very little cache in the west, whilst Specialized does, ironically. That doesn’t seem to have changed despite Merida being in the World Tour for a few years now. If someone is looking for a good value road bike Giant and Merida should be near the top of the list, of the major brands at least. Nibali uses both the Scultura and Reacto, depending on the race. He won Milan-San Remo last year on the Reacto.
 

jdd

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#54
There are a variety of routes, ranging from flat and coastal to inland and hilly (cat. 2 and cat. 3 climbs), between 65kms and 75kms one way. Not an everyday commute but there is some great scenery, especially on the coastal route. Much nicer than taking the train. ...
There are a couple somewhat similar coastal paths around here, but they seem to get sanded up pretty easily--some kind of storm and then they're sometimes that way for the rest of the season. Or, long stretches can be clear, but then you'll hit a section that's bad (and little way to tell how long that will go on). Yuk.

I hope yours stay open!
 

dastott

Maximum Pace
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Fukuoka
#55
Yes, sand can be an issue but seems to be swept regularly. It runs alongside an air force base. This particular road is just under 8km and is passable all year. Wish it was longer!
 

stu_kawagoe

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#56
It’s the power of branding. Merida has very little cache in the west, whilst Specialized does, ironically. That doesn’t seem to have changed despite Merida being in the World Tour for a few years now. If someone is looking for a good value road bike Giant and Merida should be near the top of the list, of the major brands at least. Nibali uses both the Scultura and Reacto, depending on the race. He won Milan-San Remo last year on the Reacto.
I remember when I was looking last year that you got a lot more for your money with a Scultura than a tarmac. The TCR Advanced 2 is even better value too IMO! I didn’t start riding until I got to Japan so I’m not as influenced by the Spesh branding (well, I wasn’t at the time😉)
 
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