vipey, im quite interested in the bike to work/school movement, my uni has promoted some campaign to start using bikes, do you have any advice/link/articles that explains how to choose the right bike?(since idk a thing abt bikes & afraid of being ripped of by bikeshops), ur help will be appreciated. – Rafael Martinez

If you plan to just ride to work or school in the city (and not offroad), then I recommend getting a roadbike. Yes, most people would just go out and buy a mountainbike, but that is simply because they don’t know any better. I’m sure 90% of the mountainbikes you see on the road have never even touched a real dirt trail.

Roadbikes are fast, light, and designed to be used on asphalt. A mountainbike is significantly heavier; as it has bigger tires, a stronger frame, and suspension…. which serve no purpose on the road.

If you find the dropbar handlebars of roadbikes (that curled Lance Armstrong handlebar) to be difficult to use, then get a roadbike with a more familiar flatbar handlebar. Which, as the name suggests, is flat.

As you are a beginner, I suggest buying a fullbike (sepeda jadi) from either Rodalink (Polygon brand) or from Build A Bike (United brand). Both are locally-made frames, but the quality is on par with international brands. The prices are listed, so you won’t get ripped off.

Here’s a few I can recommend:

Make sure you get the right size bike, according to your height. Here is a size calculator: , and don’t let the salesperson talk you into buying a bike that is not your size.

Look to spend around 4 to 6 million for a good first bike. “Kan ada sepeda 2 jutaan..” True, but then you’ll be upgrading components within a year anyways. And cheap bikes (or components) have no resale value. If you spend 5 million on a bike, you can always sell it if you ever bored of it. Bikes go all the way up to 150 million, easy.. so yeah, don’t get talked into that either. You’re biking to work, not the Tour d’ France. Don’t forget to budget for a helmet, bike lock, lights (front and back), gloves, bike multitool, pump, and rain jacket. I suggest for accessories.

Riding to work is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. I don’t have to allocate 2.5 hours of time, just to run 1 hour in the gym like a hamster in a wheel, twice a week. I don’t have to spend money on gym fees. I don’t spend time frustrated and brain dead sitting in the car, while I could be doing something invigorating for the body and soul, and yes.. very very fun. Every morning, at least 300 kilometers a month. Good luck, and keep me updated how it goes.

i just started biking to work. any tips on what should i prepare or bring? – Rayhan Arkinsha

I always wear a helmet, a buff, sunglasses, and gloves. In my bag: a toolkit, minipump, and spare tire. I wear Trespass pants (150rb on Bukalapak) over my padded Lycra shorts… simply because I don’t want to walk into my my office with such exposure.

And depending on how you dress and shower at work, keep a set of toiletries and towel at work. Also spare shoes and shirt. If you insist on taking all your laundry everyday, you should get a rack and pannier bags.

Why there aren’t more people riding their bikes to work is beyond me. Whatever inconveniences there are from urusan shower dandan and whatever, it pales in comparison to sitting braindead in the car everyday DAN masih harus ke gym three times a week.

Dri, beberapa hari yang lalu saya lihat beberapa cyclist di jalan raya yang penuh dengan truk. Rasanya pengen ngasih masker oksigen deh. Dari pengalamanmu b2w pernah mengalami keluhan pernafasan ga? Cara mengatasi asap knalpot gimana?

Nggak lah, asap knalpot isn’t an issue kok. Kalau pas dibelakang truk, tahan nafas satu detik and move out of range and it’s all fine kok. Yang jadi masalah tuh jalanan yang berdebu… karena you can’t move out of range. So I always wear a “buff” around my neck and pull it up as needed. Selain melindungi belakang leher dari sunburn, juga untuk lap keringet. Banyak yang jual di, yang ori dan yang KW.

Vipey, after all the time you spent riding your bike, what was the worst injury had happened to you? – Faris Salman

Ah nothing worth mentioning, really. Just a few crank scars along my lower leg, which look like teeth marks. I think the main reason is because the type of gowes I do is Urban Cycling and Cross Country. The only danger involved is crashing into angkot berhenti, or running into a tree. But my friends who do Freeride or Downhill (which are like the extreme sports of sepedaan) have had injuries such as broken wrists and collar bones.

Dear Mr Vipey, enough of all the silly relationship questions (yes, sir, I know you are just answering them). How about for a change, what was your best bike rides to date? What’s the longest ride you ever done and where was it?

Ah thank you, you lifesaver you. 🙂

My best ride? I can’t quite answer that yet. Maybe after I do a mountainbike ride in the mountains of New Zealand (or even Bali), I’ll be able to know for sure.

The longest mountainbike ride I have ever done was 3 years ago. It was 70 kilometers, from Kawah Putih to Bandung. It consisted of a downhill ride through mountain trails, makadam, and tea plantations all the way down to Situ Patenggang (a lake). Then it was a 15 kilometer uphill road climb, until the final stretch all the way to Bandung.

Om Adrian, di negara2 yg sepeda jd transportasi utama kaya di Belanda, tidak mewajibkan biker-nya pake helem, ya? Ga kaya di Australia, wajib pake helem dan lampu di sepedanya. Justru peraturan pake helem jd alesan org males bersepeda

Ini memang menjadi perdebatan sengit di kalangan pesepeda sih. Kalau saya bahas kedua sisi, bisa tidak habis2. Ini artikel yang kontra wajib pakai helm sepeda:

Saya sendiri (biasanya) pakai helm karena merasa lebih aman, dan memerlukan perlindungan dari matahari pagi. Tapi di lain pihak, paham juga kalau probabilitas cedera kepala saat jalan kaki atau nyetir mobil, ternyata SAMA dengan kalau naik sepeda. Dan tidak ada peraturan yang mengharuskan kita pakai helm di mobil, kan?

kantor sm rumah saya jaraknya lumayan dekat, tp krn macet & lalu lintas padat papa selalu bilang “jangan, nanti kamu keserempet motor / mobil”. gimana cara meyakinkan papa supaya saya bs ke kantor pakai sepeda om? – gisela semen

I’ve ridden over 10.000 kilometers, and I bike to work through industrial areas where motorcycles are like swarms of mosquitos. And not a single accident. Belum pernah ketabrak ataupun keserempet. The closest calls are angkot berhenti mendadak or kendaraan belok tanpa signal. But over time, you’ll develop your reflexes and you don’t won’t panic anymore when another vehicle cuts you off.

Just use the same common sense you would use when driving. Be aware of your environment (which I call “unagi”), and make sure other motorists know your intentions.

Honestly speaking, I think that whole “lu belum tau lalu lintas di Jakarta, Dri!” to be so frickin’ lebay sih. You’re sitting half a meter taller than cars and motorists, which makes you stick out like a sore thumb as it is. And no, it’s not like cars get extra bonus points for running over people on bikes. Everyone is just trying to get to work as efficiently as they can. We really need to have more faith in other people.

Hi, mas. So I’ve been longing untuk bike 2 work since long time ago..tapi baru pengen banget itu since bbm naik dan ongkos angkutan umum jadi lumayan berasa setiap harinya. Rumahku di Bogor dan kantor di Jakarta, so I’m planning to buy folding bike supaya bisa dibawa di kereta… Yang masih jadi pikiran adalah..masalah keamanan (diri) krn aku seringnya pulang malam (22-23 baru sampai Bogor). Mungkin ada tips untuk biker perempuan? Thx! :D

Maksudnya keamanan bersepeda di malam hari specifically for females kan? Selama rute2 yang kamu lalui itu cukup ramai, seharusnya tidak ada masalah sih. I think whatever dangers there are masih sangat negligible. Tapi tetep sih, baru2 ini ada teman saya yang B2W dan malam2 she was groped oleh pengendara motor di Jalan Latuharhari.

Ada beberapa tip sih, untuk mengurangi kemungkinan hal2 seperti itu terjadi:

– Selalu ambil rute yang ramai dan terang, meskipun lebih jauh. Jangan ambil jalan tikus atau jalur gelap2.

– Kalungkan pluit (dalam bahasa inggrisnya Rape Whistle). Tanya anak outdoor deh, itu pluit khusus yang decibel-nya tinggi sekali. You’ll know when and how to use it. Daripada sekedar teriak2 kalau sepedanya dirampas kan?

– Cari teman B2W di Disitu ada forum khusus utk cari teman B2W. Pasti mudah kok, mendapatkan teman B2W yang sejalur di jam2 yang sama. Bisa2 nanti gowesnya rombongan.

Good luck and do let me know how it goes, okay? 🙂

Tell us about your bikes dong, Om Vipey. How many do you have? Did you custom built them like some people?

Hey there.

I currently own four bikes that serve a specific use. I hope you don’t mind that I don’t mention the brands. Whenever I can, I prefer not doing so.

The first one is a full suspension cross-country mountainbike. I use this for riding in the mountains and shredding single track trails. Despite the thrashing I put it through, I take good care of it as it’s the most prized among my bikes.

The second one is my roadbike with flat bars. It’s what I use to bike to work, as it’s light and very fast. Granted, I have to watch for potholes on the streets because of its thin tires, but the effortless speed is so worth it.

My third bike is a hardtail mountainbike that folds. It’s used by American paratroopers in Afghanistan, as they can do jumps with the folded bikes strapped to them. Either that or guenya aja yg kemakan iklan. As always.

And the last one is a fixie. Which I decidedly cannot ride. And now sits in my living room. As hipster art.