The Hardcore Commuter

After writing my wet weather commuting review I started to think about all the other commuters. The fair weather commuters, the half-way bike/bus commuter, the bike-if-my-car-is-dead commuter, and the hardcore commuter. I am somewhere in between loving fair weather commuting and transitioning to the need of wet weather commuting. I don’t necessarily love commuting in the nasty weather but after learning how to prepare just right I’m able to stick with my awesome bike all year round.

Justin is what most would consider a hardcore commuter, though, and I’m not sure it would matter to him if it were snowing or hailing or one hundred degrees. His love for riding his bike transcends weather predicaments and that is what made him my next choice for a commuter review.

The rundown on Justin’s commuter gear:

  • Spiuk Helmet
  • Showers Pass Touring Jacket
  • Swerve WWR Knickers
  • Kryptonite NY Chain Lock
  • Crank Brothers Egg Beater Pedals
  • Pake Steel Single Speed Bike
  • PDW Radbot 500 + PDW Spaceship Lights
  • XLC Interchangeable Lens Glasses
  • Planet Bike Fenders
  • Mountain Bike Shoes

After being thrown over his handlebars this past summer (and suffering a gnarly broken collarbone) Justin needed to get himself a new helmet. Wanting to try something different from his Giro, Chris recommended that he try out a Spiuk helmet. Apparently it’s the most comfortable helmet in the world.

The Shower’s Pass Touring Jacket in the recognizable bright yellow keeps Justin dry on the wetter days commuting to Portland State University or on errands for Crank. “It is totally waterproof, just perfectly for riding, and just loose enough that I can layer underneath.” he says. Choosing the right clothing to wear in winter can prove to be tricky at first, so having a jacket that allows you to double up on layers underneath is especially beneficial.

The impressively sized chain you see around Justin’s waist is the Kryptonite NY Chain Lock. “It’s the only way I know my bike will be there when I get back.” And if you really don’t want to see your bike disappear, a good lock is one of the first things you should look for.

The Rest: The Egg Beater Pedals are the least expensive and the most basic of the Crank Brothers clipless pedals, mountain bike shoes (over road shoes) provide easier walkability if you plan on being off your bike, the PDW front and rear lights are a cool designed-in-Portland duo with 100 hours of power, and the glasses are great in keeping the rarity of sun from blinding you while at the same time preventing crud from getting in your eyes. To keep his feet and backside dry his bike is fitted with some Planet Bike fenders.

Nearly everything listed above is available at Crank. The bag in the above photo is Justin’s Ortlieb Flight previously reviewed. If you don’t know what kind of commuter you are or what kind of gear you might need for commuting stop by Crank and have a chat with Chris or Justin and they can help set you up with something that will work for you.

3 thoughts on “The Hardcore Commuter

  1. Doesn’t the heavy chain/lock combo (which my friends and I sometimes call the “Chastity Belt”) put a strain on hip alignment? Granted, a larger U-lock (and perhaps a companion cable, depending on location and/or duration of lockup) takes up more space in the bag but may be a better option for some folks.

    Also, I have to second the Swrve knickers. I use my winter-weight knicks often and on the coldest days a pair of thin wool tights underneath is just right. Well-designed and USA-made to boot. Good stuff.

    SO nice to visit you guys in your lovely new space the other evening. Congrats and, um, welcome to retail…



  2. I haven’t had any hip-related issues with the big chain but I’m sure that others milage may vary depending on the person, bike, and rider position. I enjoy having my lock outside of my bag so that I never have to dig through my bag in a torrential downpour looking for it. A frame-mounted U-lock would also achieve this.

    Look for Swrve products in our shop in the future. I’m a huge fan and will be carrying them as soon as possible.

    We always love having mega-bike-nerd time here at the shop. Stop by to chat anytime!

  3. Pingback: What we carry « crank

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