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So, looks like my commute is increasing to 15 miles each way

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So, looks like my commute is increasing to 15 miles each way

Old 05-13-17, 08:26 PM
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I do a 12-16 mi (one way) commute in Illinois and I sweat a lot in the summer. Luckily I have a shower at work. As everyone says, your going to sweat.
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Old 05-13-17, 09:15 PM
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Time for an ebike. You can get to the office and not be a sweaty mess.
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Old 05-13-17, 10:59 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
The fears of people on here about Dutch bikes is kind of like the fear gas car folks have had of electrics. :-)
There is no fear of one. If I lived in a climate and infrastructure that was appropriate for one of these, I would consider it. Being that I am in the midwest part of the United States, there is no way you would catch me on one of these on a summer commute, let alone in a full suit. I have an 8 mile commute and I start work at 3PM, so my ride in is just after the hottest part of the day.

Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
It's not fear. Kinda like using a hammer to drive a screw--not the right tool for the job. If my commute was less than 5k and I were wearing dressier clothes, then yeah, a dutch bike with belt drive and chain cover would be the right tool. Thirteen mile? No way.
Nailed it.

Seriously though, you are absolutely correct.
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Old 05-14-17, 06:36 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
It's not fear. Kinda like using a hammer to drive a screw--not the right tool for the job. If my commute was less than 5k and I were wearing dressier clothes, then yeah, a dutch bike with belt drive and chain cover would be the right tool. Thirteen mile? No way.
I think it is fear based on comments like that and these:

Originally Posted by TenSpeedV2 View Post
I am calling absolute bs on the suit in 85-90 temps and not sweating while riding 15 miles. Unless you are some sort of freak of nature that doesn't sweat, this is just not possible. Just the thought of trying to pedal a grossly overweight dutch style upright bike that is pushing 50lbs makes me sweat. Chicago gets humid, and 15 miles in 90 temps with the humidity and it doesn't matter if you are naked, you will be drenched.
Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
He's talking about riding an upright dutch-style bike, which I've heard has some special magical powers, one of which is being able to stay completely sweat-free while riding in 90* heat in a suit. Amazing stuff!
I think a lot of people fear losing their justification for being special HFU folks and dressing up in lycra and riding racing or other external geared bikes and being able to buy all kinds of lights and hi-viz and stuff and being able to demand special attention at work with showers and keeping bikes in cubes and blowing their body odor all over the place with drying fans under their desks. Riding 15 miles in a suit on a Dutch upright in 85f without sweating is quite reasonable and millions of people do it or have done it, me included. But that people can do that threatens the specialness of commuting on bikes that cause people to sweat more.

I do know Dutch folk (and Danes, Swedes, etc.) who will make their commute a training ride for racing. They'll ride their road bike, get in 25 miles, and shower at work. Then repeat going home. I've known many more though that do a 15-20 mile commute on their 45lb upright in regular clothes and without sweating. One doesn't negate the other. They are two different choices. Most find that commuting on their upright is the much easier and less complicated option so since they are not racers then that is the option that they choose. A few choose to combine their commute and training ride (though most racers I know use their upright for transportation and commuting and separately do a training ride).

They don't attack each other though like you see on here.

Last edited by CrankyOne; 05-14-17 at 07:00 AM.
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Old 05-14-17, 06:59 AM
  #30  
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Recently in Boston I've been seeing eBike commuters who travel at self-powered bike speeds (or slightly faster) using the power assist at a low level. Some of them are wearing their work clothes (never a suit jacket though). This is the only way I could imagine a 15 mile ride without being bathed in perspiration.

I run hot, so I will always sweat in the summer, but I could see how some eBike riders could manage. There are also some new work-shirt fabrics out there which claim to have anti-bacterial properties (Ministry of Supply) but they are expensive.

For me, lightweight merino wool is the the best material for its anti-skank properties and I wear this base layer year around during my commutes, so I second @noglider on that point, although I always remove and dry my cycling shirt during work hours, preferring cotton during the day.
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Old 05-14-17, 07:03 AM
  #31  
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Since you've already been riding 11.5 miles each way you already know about cleanup, how much you'll sweat under what conditions and so on.

But to your question, is the bike path route shaded and with no hills, as in a shaded path? Direct sunlight and hills will make sweating inevitable in the summer.
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Old 05-14-17, 09:16 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
I think a lot of people fear losing their justification for being special HFU folks and dressing up in lycra and riding racing or other external geared bikes and being able to buy all kinds of lights and hi-viz and stuff and being able to demand special attention at work with showers and keeping bikes in cubes and blowing their body odor all over the place with drying fans under their desks.

They don't attack each other though like you see on here.
Who's the one doing the attacking here?

I did concede that your idea has merit under the right circumstances, but you lost me, and a few other supporters, when you stated that you can ride in 90* heat in a suit for 13 miles without sweating. Most people would sweat just standing around in a suit at 90*, like at a few summer outdoor weddings I've attended, let alone riding a bike. Yes, you will say that riding an upright bike will generate cooling wind, but what is the speed at which you can ride fast enough to get to work in a reasonable amount of time without sweating, at 90*? I've ridden my MTB, which is quite upright, in the 90* heat of summer, in shorts and a t-shirt, perhaps at 10 mph, and I am drenched in sweat. But I digress.

In any case, seems to me that any time someone asks about a bike recommendation for a commute you are quick to recommend an upright dutch bike. Like I said, under the right circumstances it'd work great. The fact that it works for the Dutch/Germans/Danes/Swedes doesn't mean it works for North Americans. We simply don't have the built in cycling infrastructure to do what Europeans do, and trying implement the same practice here just doesn't work.

You can probably think of many other practices that do not translate well across the ocean.

FWIW I was looking at an upright dutch style bike a while back, the Trek Soho--belt drive, IGH, chain cover, disc/drum brakes f/r, and matching fenders. I would have used it for short rides to the store, going on trails with kids, maybe leisurely summer commutes to work (12 miles) in casual shorts and tank top. I just thought it was a very cool bike.
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Old 05-14-17, 09:46 AM
  #33  
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@mcours2006 - you will not win this argument with @CrankyOne ever. It just won't happen. I have all but given up and decided that I don't need to sit here and convince someone to ride a specific type of bike to work. While my commute is very flat, in the summer, at the time I ride in, there is no way I would ever be able to do that commute on a heavy upright dutch bike in a suit. I would probably pass out.
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Old 05-14-17, 09:56 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by TenSpeedV2 View Post
@mcours2006 - you will not win this argument with @CrankyOne ever. It just won't happen. I have all but given up and decided that I don't need to sit here and convince someone to ride a specific type of bike to work. While my commute is very flat, in the summer, at the time I ride in, there is no way I would ever be able to do that commute on a heavy upright dutch bike in a suit. I would probably pass out.
I know. I just can't stop myself from taking the bait.
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Old 05-14-17, 10:03 AM
  #35  
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I would like to personally invite @CrankyOne to come here to Michigan, in his full suit, on that upright dutch bike, in the dead of summer, and do a 15 mile commute without breaking a sweat. That would be the equivalent of just about my round trip give or take. Air so thick that you can feel the moisture in your lungs on every breath. Sun just baking you as you pedal that 50lb dutch bike up the small hill that is part of my commute. 92F with a hot head wind from the northwest, which is the direction that you will be traveling in so that will slow you down a bit. Humidity hovering around the 96% mark depending on the day. The dew point, that is what will get you. Dew point at 91F. I would give you $100 cash if you could do that ride without sweating. I could plot you out a nice route using almost exclusively MUP's and bike lanes as well so you could go slow if you wanted.

In the early spring/late fall, sure, that would be a nice ride to work in a suit and you might even warm up a bit on those brisk days. In the summer as I mentioned, forget it.
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Old 05-14-17, 10:14 AM
  #36  
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Yeah I'd rather ride shirtless on a light road racer and get it done in half the time than ride a 40 pound upright in a suit...
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Old 05-14-17, 11:01 AM
  #37  
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Multi Mode... Folding bike you can bring on the train or bus, use the bike to get to the nearest stop,
then at the other end from the nearest stop to the jobsite..

Chicago Does have Public Transport.
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Old 05-14-17, 03:15 PM
  #38  
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I'll see how I like the wool t-shirt as the weather gets warmer. It's in the 60s today, and I still have it on under a dress shirt. I got it a few months ago. It's a Smartwool, and it's very thin. I wear it six days a week, other than the day it's in the wash.
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Old 05-15-17, 05:21 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
Who's the one doing the attacking here?
I simply made a recommendation that is the common solution for millions of people outside of the U.S., myself included. You guys jumped on me criticizing it.
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Old 05-15-17, 05:27 AM
  #40  
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Sure you did. And you also made no disparaging comments about lycra-clad, hi-vis wearing, multi-geared bike, racer-fanboys either.
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Old 05-15-17, 05:36 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
I've ridden my MTB, which is quite upright, in the 90* heat of summer, in shorts and a t-shirt, perhaps at 10 mph, and I am drenched in sweat.
I've never seen an upright MTB? If you are leaning forward, even just a little, it makes a huge difference and will cause you to sweat a lot more. You are carrying some of your body weight on your hands, wrists, arms, and shoulders which requires considerably more effort than carrying it on your keister. You are also creating folds in your skin that increases sweat and reduces cooling ability. Were you wearing a helmet and gloves? These both reduce your body's ability to cool. Breathable white long sleeve oxford shirt that helps keep your body cooler? How hard were you pushing? These all make significant differences.

If I'm riding from Assen to Groningen on a 90f day (which is thankfully rare) I'll not be pushing. I'll ride at whatever speed is comfortable. This is a lot faster if I have a tail wind and a lot slower in a headwind. It can be quite slow going up inclines and quite fast going down. I'll time junctions to avoid having to stop whenever possible. It probably takes 10-15 minutes longer to avoid sweating on a hot day for this 20 mile journey but it works quite well.

I don't think it would be possible to do it on a MTB, any Electra, Trek SOHO, etc.

BTW, I spend a good bit of Spring, Summer, and Fall in Minnesota so am familiar with midwest heat and humidity.

Last edited by CrankyOne; 05-15-17 at 05:42 AM.
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Old 05-15-17, 05:37 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
Sure you did. And you also made no disparaging comments about lycra-clad, hi-vis wearing, multi-geared bike, racer-fanboys either.
True. You got me on that.
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Old 05-15-17, 06:22 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
I've never seen an upright MTB? If you are leaning forward, even just a little, it makes a huge difference and will cause you to sweat a lot more. You are carrying some of your body weight on your hands, wrists, arms, and shoulders which requires considerably more effort than carrying it on your keister. You are also creating folds in your skin that increases sweat and reduces cooling ability. Were you wearing a helmet and gloves? These both reduce your body's ability to cool. Breathable white long sleeve oxford shirt that helps keep your body cooler? How hard were you pushing? These all make significant differences.
I don't think you're going to convince anyone around here.

It's 90*. How hard do you think I have to push before I begin to perspire?

Like others have suggested, if OP's aim is to not perspire over 13 miles of riding and not have to spend two hours on the road, an e-bike is perfect.
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Old 05-15-17, 06:40 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
Riding 15 miles in a suit on a Dutch upright in 85f without sweating is quite reasonable and millions of people do it or have done it, me included.
I can't walk 5 minutes in a suite at 85F without sweating a fair amount. Heck, I don't think I could just stand still for 5 minutes in those conditions without sweating.
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Old 05-15-17, 10:57 AM
  #45  
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My open invite to @CrankyOne still stands. Will he take me up on it?
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Old 05-17-17, 08:17 AM
  #46  
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Re: The Magical Dutch Bike

When my wife started bike commuting, I did some research on the magical Dutch bike and their riders. Here are the basics:
  • 70% of Dutch bicycle commutes are less than 5 miles each way.
  • It's flat.
  • It's much cooler in the summer - average high in August is 20 Celsius (68 Farenheit).
  • The average Dutch commute speed is around 12 miles per hour.
  • The Dutch have put a lot of work in putting in bike infrastructure that limits bicycle stops. This increases overall speed average without having to sprint stoplight to stoplight.

Put all that together and you get the magical Dutch bicycle. We don't have that here in the US, so the bike type is not magical.

Sources:
https://www.fietsberaad.nl/library/re...rlands2009.pdf
https://weather-and-climate.com/aver...am,Netherlands

Last edited by tbo; 05-17-17 at 08:37 AM.
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Old 05-17-17, 08:43 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by ItsJustMe View Post
I can't walk 5 minutes in a suite at 85F without sweating a fair amount. Heck, I don't think I could just stand still for 5 minutes in those conditions without sweating.
A lot of it depends on the humidity too; when it's 85F/85%, you'll sweat laying in a hammock with a cold beer.

When my wife started bike commuting, I did some research on the magical Dutch bike and their riders. Here are the basics:
70% of Dutch commutes are less than 5 miles each way.
It's flat.
It's much cooler in the summer - average high in August is 20 Celsius (68 Farenheit).
The average Dutch commute speed is around 12 miles per hour.
The Dutch have put a lot of work in putting in bike infrastructure that limits bicycle stops. This increases overall speed average without having to sprint stoplight to stoplight.

Put all that together and you get the magical Dutch bicycle. We don't have that here in the US, so the bike type is not magical.
Well, my commute is 8 miles each way, and it's not infrastructure but rather a pretty much non-stop route that has me usually only stopping 2-3 times in that. (One to make a left onto a major US highway at a light, and often one or two getting through the residential streets before that.) I tend to average 12-13mph, but even when it's 65F here, I sweat because "flat" isn't even a concept we understand here. They may not be big hills by some standards, but there isn't a lot of road that doesn't slope noticeably one way or the other. Spinning up a hill at 6mph doesn't make for much of a breeze, and the descent isn't often a nice, straight relax-and-bomb-it-for-a-mile runout to dry off on.
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Old 05-17-17, 08:59 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by tbo View Post
Re: The Magical Dutch Bike

When my wife started bike commuting, I did some research on the magical Dutch bike and their riders. Here are the basics:
  • 70% of Dutch bicycle commutes are less than 5 miles each way.
  • It's flat.
  • It's much cooler in the summer - average high in August is 20 Celsius (68 Farenheit).
  • The average Dutch commute speed is around 12 miles per hour.
  • The Dutch have put a lot of work in putting in bike infrastructure that limits bicycle stops. This increases overall speed average without having to sprint stoplight to stoplight.

Put all that together and you get the magical Dutch bicycle. We don't have that here in the US, so the bike type is not magical.
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Yeah, that sounds exactly NOT like what have here. And yet despite it being magical and all that, 30% still choose to commute with some other type of bicycle. Perhaps a geared road bike with spandex and florescent helmet.
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Old 05-17-17, 09:07 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
Yeah, that sounds exactly NOT like what have here. And yet despite it being magical and all that, 30% still choose to commute with some other type of bicycle. Perhaps a geared road bike with spandex and florescent helmet.
The "70% of Dutch bicycle commutes" mentioned relates to the people riding any bicycle for commuting in The Netherlands. My bad. Didn't make that clear. I have no breakout information on types of bikes being used for commuting in The Netherlands.
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Old 05-17-17, 09:08 AM
  #50  
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I ride my Dutch-inspired upright riding e-bike 15 miles to work, and I STILL sweat, wearing only gym shorts and tech t-shirt. There's absolutely no way I could do this commute without the shower we have in the office.
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