Category: Commuter Bikes

Some of you may know that RL and I have been living with one car instead of two..which has its many advantages. RL had to take the car today for a job that was kinda far so I opted to be the bike commuter today. I don’t work far at all but because of some driving responsibilities I have at work I have to make sure to bring my car to work most days. But not today. Today was a beautiful day for a bike ride.

RL, of course being the big fan he is, needed to get a picture of me. As you can see I am just a little agitated!! I wasn’t too happy this morning because I was already running late for work. I hadn’t had anything to eat yet and had just spent the last 20min curling my hair. Why you ask? Good grief, I don’t know. I thought for some reason my bouncing curls could withstand the tightening pressure of that helmet. What was I thinking? I ended up just putting my hair up in a clip when I got to work. :(

The commute actually was short and sweet. No near death experiences to report! And I can’t complain about any weird smell or trash around here. It was actually a nice smog filled commute. Rather uneventful, but still fun. :) It didn’t take long for the commute to change my attitude and put a smile back on my face.

The co workers…ohhhhhed and awwwwed as they saw my bike. This was the one day I wish I had brought the camera with me. They LOVED the Xtracycle. We had a little downtime today because somebody microwaved their lunch without turning off the lights…and it shut down our server. Yeah, yeah I know…don’t ask. But the co workers thought it would be a great time to get rides across the parking lot on the Xtracycle! We had soo much fun! One right after the other..they all jumped on the back and off we rode. By the end, my boss (Thomas) was giving my manager (Alan) a ride on the Xtracycle. Hilarious scene!

Good times to say the least. But it was great to see everyone with so many smiles on their faces…the joy of riding a bike. Once we were back in the office the mood was elevated and we were all talking about what a great time we had. I was glad I rode my bike today and was able to share just a little of that with the co workers. :)

And here is a random happy pic from interbike because I don’t like my agitated photo above. HA!

Right before Interbike I had just changed the oil, checked the fluids and kicked the tires on my Korean Grocery Getter since we were going to use it to drive to Vegas. Well, as I headed out for lunch, I noticed that there was a puddle of coolant under my car. I had suspected earlier that it was my car since I could smell the sweet scent of the green stuff.

I checked the car over once I got home and found that there was a long crack that went right through the middle of the tank. I’m not sure how that happened but it basically meant that I’m going to have to pay through the nose to get it fixed.

Luckily, I have a friend that has a shop that allows me to work on my cars and get parts at his cost, but like I said I have to work on my own cars. Nuff said, so I’ll be out a few hundred dollars again.

Well that was last week and my car is still parked in my spot just collecting dust. I haven’t heard back from my buddy to see when I could come by to replace my radiator. So this whole time I’ve been riding my bike more than I have in the past.

On Monday I rode the kids to work on the Xtracycle, then went straight to the office. Then today I did have a meeting that was way far, so Priscilla drove her car to her office and I told her that I’d come by later to grab the car for my meeting.

I dropped the kids off at school via Xtracycle — we get tons of attention on that thing! Then I went home, grabbed my Redline Nacho and rode to Priscilla’s office. Loaded up my Nacho and headed out to my appointment.

I’m seriously trying to put off repairing my car just so I don’t have to shell out the money, and I’m actually having fun biking my drive!

I’ve had the Nirve Ultraliner for the past few months. And have used it to commute to work and around town for fun.

The Ultraliner comes in 15? for the ladies, 17? and 21? for the guys.

MSRP: $499.99

Advertised as:

Shifts automatically just like your car to always keep you in the right gear
No more guessing which way to turn the shifter and ending up in the wrong gear
Climbs hills easier. Keep up with your friends with less effort
Lightweight & easy rolling alloy 700C wheels with stainless spokes
SHIMANO 3 speed automatic transmission always chooses the right gear for your riding conditions
Upright Nirve Sports Cruiser handlebars for comfortable cruising
Nirve comfort saddle with springs
Tough impact resistant Polycarbonate fenders
Alloy kick stand

Eye Candy: Whether on my commutes or just for fun, the Ultraliner was always catching some eyes. This bike definitely has more bling than most bikes. The burnished aluminum is a great touch for this bike.

The Ride: The upright position was very comfortable. Even after riding several miles, I did not experience any neck or back pain from slouching over like I would get from other bikes that I’ve had. It’s wide saddle made the ride smooth. Breaking was no problem at all. It’s V brakes worked beautifully.

The Shimano 3 Speed Automatic transmission worked flawlessly. Whether I rode up and down hills, or on rough terrain it shifted at the precise moment I needed it to. It’s shift timing could be easily adjust to shift sooner or later by a dial on the CPU located towards the rear of the bike.

Likes: The ride was smooth, thanks to the 700C wheels. It comes with a full chain guard to keep your legs from getting greasy, and fenders to keep dirt or mud off your back. Extremely low maintenance. The only thing I’ve had to do to this bike is pump the tires. Plus, I love the fact that you don’t have to worry about shifting! I have to mention that this bike totally kicks the Trek Lime’s butt by far. It’s cheaper, and its a bit faster because of the 700c wheels.

Another great thing about the Ultraliner is the Shimano Dynamo Hub not only powers up the CPU for shifting, but it also has enough juice to power up a dynamo light that we added from Planet Bike.

Dislikes: The bike is a bit on the slower side. But then again it’s called a Cruiser for a reason.

Recommendations: This is such a fun bike to commute or ride recreationally. If you like taking leisure rides without having to worry about shifting into the right gear because you’re not sure which is the right gear, then you’ll love the Nirve Ultraliner with its Autoshift technology. This is definitely one of the most pleasurable bikes I’ve had a chance to test out.

My main commuter bike is my Redline 925, its a fixed. But I also have my Ibex/Xtracycle when I need to carry a big load.

I’ve come to the conclusion that I would rather commute on my fixed gear than my Xtracycle which in its core is a mountain bike.

Here’s why I’d rather ride a fixed gear bike than a 26″ mountain bike:

1. Mountain bikes are heavier.
The Ibex/Xtracycle is about 40lbs all together.

2. Mountain bikes are slower
The gear ratio on it isn’t mean for me to get some fast speeds. Smaller wheels, 26″ vs 700c…26 would lose. 700c wheels roll faster and smoother.

3. Less clutter. My fixed gear has one cable coming out of the bar, thats for my front brake. My mountain bike has 4 cables, 2 shifters and 2 brake levers. Fixed gear bikes have less hassle to deal with when riding.

So for me, I’m sticking to my fixed gear as my main commuter.