Cycling in Melbourne Australia
Hi, I'm in the market for a new bike and was considering the Dutchie from Mojo Bikes - http://www.mojobike.com.au/dutchie/ - does anyone have experience with this bike? I can't find any reviews, only of their fixie styles.
The other one I was looking at was the KHS Green (with step-through frame - but now $500 too) which has good reviews on a few sites around the world.
My needs are pretty basic - three gears, step-through frame, mudguards and chain guard, preferably back rack and basket too. Obviously I can add these things on but I want to keep it under $500 all up.
My current bike is a vintage Repco which I got at a garage sale for $5 and while we've had a long and happy relationship I'm looking to branch out -- I feel I would ride more if I didn't have annoying stem-mounted shifters and better brakes etc etc. Would really appreciate some advice.
G'day and welcome..
It's very difficult to suggest one over the other without riding or at least seeing them.
The fully enclosed chain on the dutchie might be good if you wear a long skirt when riding; I rarely do this but you might.
It would be a pain to remove the rear wheel though - if you get a flat.
The front brake lever on the dutchie is on the left - no big deal but it's more common to be on the right.
Always be careful on your first few rides on any bike - grabbing a hand full of front brake when you think it is the rear can ruin your day.
I wouldn't put much value on the light - the dynamo setup will probably slow you down to a speed where do don't need a light anyway.. I'd get some battery lights if you need a light (a hub mounted generator would be best but a bit $$$).
Not sure on the front hub brake - it's probably OK but if it shags it you may struggle to find parts etc and probably end up with a new (standard) wheel - and canti-lever brakes because there are no posts for V-brakes.
(canti brakes are OK, but V brakes are better)
The grip shift hub gears are good. I'll think you'll like them over your stem mounted levers and derailer.
The dutchie says it a nexus - good.. I'd check on the KHS; it probably is but if not I'd research it a bit more.
The v-brakes on the front of the KHS may make it difficult to put a basket on.
But at least you can go and see it and if you smile and ask nicely they'll probably let you take it for a burn.
They should be able to fit a basket - make sure it doesn't rest on the brakes or bend the cables too much.
The more you bend them, the more friction there is inside the cable and the harder gear shifts and braking will be.
I see the KHS is now $350 too.
The tyres on the KHS look thinner - good for less drag (go faster with less effort) but maybe not as comfortable as the fats on the Dutchie. (with the fats you can run them a bit softer for a smooter ride but it will noticably increase your drag and it will handle like the preverbial bag - can't have it all)
Based on what I see I would check out the KHS - looks a bit heavy but for the $$ probably better.
Oh, I assume they are both coaster brake (foot brake) on the rear but can't see to be sure.
Hope this helps
Thanks so much for your detailed response, Chris! I had meant that the KHS was sold out at that retailer so the cheapest I can find it now is $499 (here). But you're right about being able to test ride it. I am a bit suspicious of the fact that there's no reviews of the dutchie that I can find.
I'm a bit confused.. the pic here shows a gear hub but the specs say otherwise:
"Freewheel 16T Freewheel, Fixed Gear ready Flip-Flop Track hub"
Still looks like a reasonable bike - best go chat with them.
The 3 speed hub is probably an option.
Tyres are good "Tires Kenda 700x26c"
They will be fast, but will mean a bit harder ride.
If you ride properly it will be fine.
I've also heard about slow response rates from Mojo with respect to ordering and delivery (and emails to follow up).
I believe they are only getting started, however, and are a local business.
Another local business you may want to look at, http://www.papillionaire.com.au/ourbikes.php
Personally, however, I'd generally buy from a bike shop. It's good to get the servicing, and establish a relationship.