I bought a brand new Giant Iguana mountain bike for a song a couple of months ago, and have been enjoying it immensely. I have a pretty manic teaching schedule - 5 to 7 hours a day in Muzha, then it’s back home to Xizhi for a bit, and then off to my buxiban (downtown Taipei) for four hours of classes in the evening. I find that biking to and from my buxiban (about 25 kms round trip) gives me the energy to get through the evening hours - I’m really enjoying it!
I’ve been thinking about my ride, though. A mountain bike can’t be the ideal bike for this kind of commute, can it? The roads I travel on are bumpy and rutted (I travel along a good stretch of Nanjing East Road, which is all dug up due to MRT construction). What’s the best kind of bike for what I’m doing? What are the best kind of tires? I don’t intend to ever go trail-riding. What’s the best size of bike for me? Right now I’ve got a 19-inch frame (center-to-top) but the bike feels small, somehow. I’m 183 cms, 100 kilos, with a 32 inch inseam.
I think a ten-speed (the last bike I owned was a ten speed that I got in 1981), would be too flimsy for the crap road conditions, here right?
I feel like there’s too much weight on my hands - but this is my first mountain bike - perhaps I’m just not used to it?
I don’t feel particularly nimble on it. The riding position doesn’t seem to be good for “no-hands” riding, which isn’t something I plan on doing, but it always felt good to know that a bike rode that easy.
I know there are a few questions here, so feel free to pick and choose. This post was written after a couple of whiskies, so it’s a little disorganized.
I’m really loving the endorphins I’m getting from the ride, though. The hardest part is getting on the bike. Once you’re on, you just keep pedalling until you get to where you’re going. I’ve been doing some good thinking on these rides, too. I’m not really saving the environment or anything, as my wife still has to take the car in, but at least I get the work-out!