wiblick has made a request:
"I'm thinking of buying an electra townie 700C 8 speed and NO ONE can tell me anything about it, especially regarding seat height. I'm 5ft 2 as well and would be really interested in hearing your thoughts.Could you mail me? Let me know what model you bought etc. Can you really sit comfortably and have your feet flat to the ground? Do you have a pannier thingy?
or maybe just do an post to your blog about it?"
I have been ASKED to blog! *overwhelmed*
My Townie is a 7D, but I have no idea about the tires. The D refers to the rear derailleur, meaning it has an extra fancy doohickey instead of regular gears. I'm not sure what the advantages of that are, but the 8 doesn't seem to have it. My seat is adjusted so that I can stand flat on the ground while on the saddle if I'm wearing a slightly chunky heel, but there's plenty of room to adjust down if I wanted to be more comfortable in flats. I've seen people on regular bikes, straining to get their tippy-toes on the ground while sitting, and how awkward that is. Also, I love the wide saddle that comes with my Townie.
May be a concern for you: I don't see a step-through version of the 8 speed on the Electra website. Step-through and flat-foot are what makes it so comfortable IMHO, and I don't see it being as good without both. Then again, I'm clumsy. *shrug*
I had the rear rack installed, but make sure you have them use a longer screw, because one that come with the rack popped loose on my first long ride. It wasn't a safety issue, but you obviously don't want that. My other accessories include front and rear blinkey LEDs and a CatEye mirror. Very important since I drive on roads like a car, and its getting darker in the mornings. I'm currently lusting after some fenders, because I'm tired of ringing out my socks and because Texas lied to me about being a semi-desert.
I have a Basil Blossom pannier, which sadly I cannot recommend. They're deadly cute on my bike, but they aren't easily/reasonably removable or collapsible, and don't keep their form (makes them look frumpy). They connect to the rack with buckles, but the frame weirdly with velcro that always come loose, and they shift back into my spokes on an uphill when loaded. They do, however, hold lots of stuff for the price, so I'm not replacing them anytime soon.
It really is a comfortable ride. The sitting position is great for seeing everything around, and not hunched over the handlebars, no strain on my hands, and comfortable starts and stops. Seven speeds seem like enough for me, so I never have to stand to pedal or get off and push up a hill .The best is coasting downhill, such a pleasant rush!