Commuting bike suggestion

Hello everyone. This will be my first bike purchase and I don't have a large budget for it. Around $450-$550..

I will be looking on craigslist.

I don't know much about bikes. My commute to work is about 5 miles and to school it is about 3 miles. The commute to work will be into the downtown area. So I don't need anything special. I just don't know what type of bike to look for.

I don't think I want a full on road bike because of the small tires and I don't want a full on mountain bike. Is there something in between? What is it called?

Any suggestions?


  • prowla
    prowla Posts: 13,150 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    Well, there are hybrid bikes - I think your budget should get you smething decent (including a bike lock and safety gear!).
    Are there safe roads/paths to cycle on in Phoenix?
    As I recall, Phoenix is pretty flat, but you can never have too many gears.
    Me, I'd be getting a mountain bike, but not too extreme a one.
  • esuhl
    esuhl Posts: 9,409 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    As above, "hybrid" bikes are in-between mountain and road bikes.

    But, for the same money, mountain bikes seem to (in my limited experience) offer better performance for the money.

    If I were you, I'd have a look at some mountain bikes without suspension. Put some narrower, less knobbly tyres on it, and it'll be ideal for road use.

    I don't know what the roads are like where you live, but round here there are some nasty potholes that I'd hate to ride over on a road bike.
  • Nasqueron
    Nasqueron Posts: 8,775 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    There are various bikes that sit in between road and mountain bike - hybrid, CX, gravel, adventure road etc.

    A CX for example, while like a road bike with dropped handlebars will normally have disc brakes and a large clearance meaning 35c or 38c (maybe 40c) will fit on there, getting a knock around bike is probably possible for your budget. Perhaps consider ebay with paypal though rather than craigslist, $500 is a lot to be carrying for someone who knows you are coming and could attempt to rob you or sell a stolen bike.

    Do you not have second hand / thrift store bikes in the US where you could get a decent value bike from a reputable dealer?

    At random of google I found a few sites selling used bikes, one called Archer's in Mesa seems to have plenty of cheap used ones
  • These people might be able to advise on local options in Phoenix:
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