<p>I'm going to bring a bike to campus next year. I have a nice mountain bike, but I couldn't see leaving that out in the rain or risk getting it stolen. I have a rusty BMX bike, but I'd really like to have gears (hilly campus). Should I search craigslist for a hybrid bike (<$100) or just use my BMX bike?</p>

<p>Also, my dad is really into road biking and has always mandated helmets. I don't see many people around campus with helmets...what are the thoughts with this?</p>

<p>Your bike won't get stolen if you use a good lock. It might get rusty, but if you find a covered area, it won't be as bad. </p>

<p>That said, I'd probably just get a cheapo bike for riding around.</p>

<p>I regularly ride a hybrid bike around campus without a helmet. I think it depends on
a) How experienced of a rider you are
b) How busy your campus is</p>

<p>Personally, my campus is extremely urban (Pitt) but I'd consider myself a very good rider. It's a personal decision you have to make.</p>

<p>Beta-Fist & Pandem:</p>

<p>Use a damn helmet! It's like a seat belt in a car--much better to have it and not need, than need it and not have it. No matter how experienced a cyclist you are, that unexpected and rare spill onto the ground w/o a helmet can be very, very serious. I know from personal experience after a tumble that left me banged up, unconscious, and in the ER. The doc told me that withouth the helmet I might not be walking around today. </p>

<p>As to the bike, yes use a lock, and you can take the front wheel off and with you inside if you're really paranoid. (Those big kryptonite locks and heavy chains can be cut w'o too much trouble.) </p>

<p>Other thing is too make sure you wipe it off and dont let it sit around wet. Too much moisture is hell on a bike. Even aluminum frames usually have some steel parts that start to rust and go bad (like chains and gear sets).</p>

<p>I was planning on using a helmet, but I just don't see anyone else using one! (BIG, urban school.) Good job on wearing yours..</p>

<p>What do you think the average college bike runs in cost? I take really good care of my bikes now, but I always take it in the garage. I don't want to bring it in my cramped dorm room, so I guess I'll have to leave it outside. That brings me to the bringing my old, crappy bike...</p>

<p>I used to wear helmets, until I got into an accident where I got hit by a car coming out of a stop sign. It's silly, and probably stupid, but I think a minor fall won't damage your brain, and a serious head on collision won't be assuaged by a piece of styrofoam on your head. Besides, helmets are hot on a summer day and are annoying to carry around.</p>

<p>I strongly second your dad on getting a road bike. I used to ride mtb. After getting a road bike, I'm never going back.</p>

<p>P.S. After reading what happened to BigDaddy, I think I might wear a helmet from now on. I mean coming to my senses, I'd rather be safe than sorry... lol</p>

<p>PPS Craigslist is the best place to buy bikes. There are tons of great deals out there. My road bike was $80, and it was made in the 70s. A bike, when kept under good care, will last longer than you, so don't be :( if you find out that a bike is made in the 70s or 80s. If you don't like used stuff, go to or something. DO NOT buy from bike stores because that's like using money to wipe ur tushie.</p>

<p>Are roadbikes or hybrids better?</p>

<p>road bikes. But it's a matter or preference. For me, the key difference is the thickness of the wheel and the handle bars. To a biker knowitall, which I'm not, there would be other differences.</p>

<p>Thicker wheel = more friction = more effort put into the pedals. However, thicker wheels = more friction = less chance of slipping on ice/sandy road.</p>

<p>As far as price is concerned, hybrids are generally cheaper in stores. But there are much more road bikes out there than hybrids, so on craigslist, you're more likely to find a cheaper road bike.</p>

<p>Everyone in my city (madison, WI) rides bikes, and almost all wear helmets. </p>

<p>All the experienced riders use one, because they rack up the most miles and are most susceptible to a spill. I'm surprised that pandem recommended otherwise.</p>

<p>im taking my trek mountain bike thati bought for $40.</p>

<p>I wasn't advocating riding helmet-less, just sharing my experience. I've been riding for a long time and have yet to be in an accident (other than me running into a stop sign.)</p>

<p>One could argue that a helmet provides a false sense of security. For me, I don't use one mostly because it's a pain to carry around. That said, I'm extremely paranoid when I ride a bike and pay attention to my surroundings much more than your average bike rider. I'd also consider myself a very spatial-oriented person, if that matters.</p>

<p>I've been riding in urban areas for years now -- pay attention, use the sidewalks when necessary, etc. -- and you should be fine, helmet or no helmet. Prevention is the first solution.</p>