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  1. #1
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    How much has cycling cost you in terms of money and time over the past few years?

    1. How much money have you dropped on this sport: new equipment, event fees, travelling costs to get to events, accommodations, cycling-specific food, club memberships ... ???

    2. How much time have you spent each year over the past few years cycling?


    ~~~***~~~***~~~

    1. As a rough guess, I'd have to say that over the past 4 years, I've probably spent an average of $5000 CAD ($4000 USD) a year on cycling.

    2. Again a rough guess, but I'd have to say that I've spent approx. 600 hours a year on cycling, out of a possible 8760 hours ... hmmmm ... that's only 7% of my time, but it doesn't include all the travelling time, and shopping time and everything else associated with cycling.

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    Good question. I usually see this type of question phrased as "How much money have you saved by cycling". I guess it depends on how a person integrates cycling into their lifestyle. This year, cycling will cost me around $3500. $2400 of that amount involved the purchase of my new road bike. I really would like to answer that cycling Saved me $XXXX but the living without a car lifestyle just won't work for me.

  3. #3
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    Over the past two years I've spent about $4500 as I've just replaced two bikes, finally gotten a new helmet and some new shoes. Usually I would now amortize that outlay over the next four or five years, spend a couple hundred every year on odds and ends. But one of the new bikes isn't cutting it, so 06 will be another heavy year.

    Not to get too far off topic, how about how cheap cycling is relative to other recreational pursuits? One could buy a top of the line bike every year, and I'm talking Serrotta territory, and take a first class tour with it every year and still be well under what the average boater puts out every year. Recreational pilots spend even more. Serious kayakers put out more dough than we do. Motorcycling ain't cheap. Biking is even cheaper than Golf. Bicycling is a great sport, inexpensive, and with a very low pain in the ass factor. Well, at least with the right seat!
    I'm just trying to be the person my dog thinks I am.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by tom cotter
    Not to get too far off topic, how about how cheap cycling is relative to other recreational pursuits? One could buy a top of the line bike every year, and I'm talking Serrotta territory, and take a first class tour with it every year and still be well under what the average boater puts out every year. Recreational pilots spend even more. Serious kayakers put out more dough than we do. Motorcycling ain't cheap. Biking is even cheaper than Golf. Bicycling is a great sport, inexpensive, and with a very low pain in the ass factor. Well, at least with the right seat!
    Compared to my other pursuit, flying, cycling is down right cheap! It's also less stressful.

  5. #5
    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    I spend annually about USD$3000 but I save significantly more than that since my bike is my only means of personal transport. i need reliability so I have no problem paying a bit extra for higher quality stuff.

    No idea how much time I spend but I commute at least 2 hours per day, 5 days per week, and my average Saturday social/fun/training ride is around 6 hours at least every 2nd Saturday, then there's at least 2 hours a week on maintenance plus another hour or so just fiddling. So the number of hours is somewhere between 700 and 750.
    Last edited by Cyclaholic; 10-11-05 at 08:34 PM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    I spend what I can when I can. I haven't really kept track of my costs, but I'd guess at US$400 a year in parts and supplies.

    As for time, that's irrelivent. The time "lost" while riding now is time gained later.

  7. #7
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DieselDan
    I spend what I can when I can. I haven't really kept track of my costs, but I'd guess at US$400 a year in parts and supplies.

    As for time, that's irrelivent. The time "lost" while riding now is time gained later.

    How do you get away with cycling so inexpensively? The insurance on my bicycle alone costs in the neighborhood of $200/year. Tires and tubes are well over $100 each year. And we haven't even begun to talk about cycling events yet.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    How do you get away with cycling so inexpensively? The insurance on my bicycle alone costs in the neighborhood of $200/year. Tires and tubes are well over $100 each year. And we haven't even begun to talk about cycling events yet.
    Insurance? Interesting, I've never thought about bicycle insurance. The other costs depend on how many miles a year a person rides. You put a lot of miles on your bike. A person who has a bicycle as their only means of transportation may ride everyday but their mileage is very little.

  9. #9
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TomM
    Insurance? Interesting, I've never thought about bicycle insurance. The other costs depend on how many miles a year a person rides. You put a lot of miles on your bike. A person who has a bicycle as their only means of transportation may ride everyday but their mileage is very little.

    Machak (my Marinoni) has been insured since he was born. That was the first thing I did when I got him. I would feel VERY uncomfortable riding him around the country, and hauling him over to other countries if he weren't insured. What if something happened to him??? *I'm* insured (health/dental/disability/travel/life) ... why wouldn't I insure my "baby"?

    Oh, that's another thing ... travel insurance ... that costs me between about $100 and $150 a year too.


    But you've got a point about mileage. I burn through roughly 6 tires a year, and probably twice that in tubes, whereas someone who didn't ride much might only go through 1 or 2. Then there's the wear and tear thing ... the more you use your bicycle, the more things fall apart. I had my freehub disintegrate on me last year about this time in Hobart, and had to fork over $75 for that repair, then there were my seatpost and forks. This year it was pedals and handlebar tape (thankfully not as 'urgently' as that freehub or the seatpost). But now my bottom bracket has this "click".

    And what about energy bars and suppliments - a container of Sustained Energy is nearly $40. Hammergel is about $30 .......

    It all adds up!!

  10. #10
    No longer in Wimbledon... womble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    1. As a rough guess, I'd have to say that over the past 4 years, I've probably spent an average of $5000 CAD ($4000 USD) a year on cycling.

    2. Again a rough guess, but I'd have to say that I've spent approx. 600 hours a year on cycling, out of a possible 8760 hours ... hmmmm ... that's only 7% of my time, but it doesn't include all the travelling time, and shopping time and everything else associated with cycling.
    Wow- that's a lot of money!

    Over the past 3 years, I mainly cycle to commute or as light recreation. Besides buying another bike (80's road bike for CAD90) this year, I've had no other major expenditures. Maybe a set of tyres and two hubs (all from Ebay), a couple of tubes, some tool rental time in the local bike co-op. Last year I brought a Brooks saddle and had my front shocks rebuit. So I've probably spent less than CAD300 per year. On the other hand, I don't ride as much as you do. Estimated 200 commuting hours last year and far less this year. A big fat zero since my arrival in Hong Kong in September as my bikes are overseas

    Previously, I've gone through periods of international travel with my bike, and I guess if I included ticket costs, they'd be pretty high. However, even if I hadn't been cycling, I would have been doing similar trips for some other sport, so I don't see it as a "cycling" cost so much as a general recreational cost. On top of that, I've never insured my mountain bike (the road bike not being worth insuring!) and besides two charity events, have never entered organised events.
    Last edited by womble; 10-11-05 at 10:35 PM.

  11. #11
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    Time....I have no freaking clue...

    Money, between my roadie and MTB, around $3.5-4k, couting shoes, lights, etc. Basically anyhting I had to buy for my bike at all.

    The fun part....even though I spent way too much, it's still cheaper than if I was to own a car.
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  12. #12
    Stv
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    This is my first year back after a lengthy multi-year "pause". Bike and gear, out the LBS door was $2,500. CDN. Half dozen Jerseys, shoes, several shorts, jacket, leggings, trainer, helmut, tools and repairs, etc.,etc.,etc., was conservatively another $2,500 CDN funds for a grand total of $5,000K or more Loonies my first season back. Ouch me !

    Still cheaper than outfitting new SLR and DSLR photography systems. Much cheaper than jetboats too ! Guess that explains why I don't have any money.

    5,500 KMS = guesstimate of 366 average of total hours on the road, plus easily another 366 hours for prep time, clean, repairs and lots of hours lost to extra mid-day naps ! (732hrs.)

    Now, what did I win ?????? ;>P
    Last edited by Stv; 10-11-05 at 10:55 PM.
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  13. #13
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by womble
    Wow- that's a lot of money!

    Previously, I've gone through periods of international travel with my bike, and I guess if I included ticket costs, they'd be pretty high. However, even if I hadn't been cycling, I would have been doing similar trips for some other sport, so I don't see it as a "cycling" cost so much as a general recreational cost.
    Yeah, I'm including one or more flights each year ... plus trains, busses, rental cars, and fuel in my price too. If I weren't heading to cycling events, I wouldn't be paying for all of that.

  14. #14
    Car-Free Flatlander Stacy's Avatar
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    When I first returned to cycling just over a year ago I had this silly idea that all I needed was a couple hundred worth of accessories. Now I think I probably spend a couple hundred on cycling each month.

    When I needed a new pair of sneakers it became cycling shoes., new shorts were cycling shorts, and of couse there was registration fees for events, better tires, etc.

    4000 U$D is more than I've spent this year but give me time . Maybe next year I'll be able to spend more

  15. #15
    Powered by Borscht ovoleg's Avatar
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    probably around ~$1900'ish on cycling and over 100 or so hours?

    Its hard to say since I don't count....

    I'm dizzy

  16. #16
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    I do almost all my riding on an old (but fine) roadbike that I bought for 100. I probably spend about 1-200 a year on maintenance. Insurance comes with membership of the Cyclists Touring Club. Tyres last about 2 years for me.
    I do all my local transport and commuting on this bike, as well as leisure so it saves me pots of money.

  17. #17
    Senior Member onbike 1939's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Machka]How much has cycling cost you in terms of money and time over the past few years?

    Please...please...don't ask questions like that. To even think about it for a moment could cause me unendurable mental anguish

  18. #18
    lws
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    I almost never buy bike stuff new, at list price. The last time was five or six years ago, I bought a new campy ergopower group and two steel cassettes which I alternate and am still using.

    Everything else I buy on clearance or closeout or some kind of sale. As a rough guess, I think I've spent about $250 this year on new shoes, new shorts, two tires and two tubes.

    Insurance is a product which makes money for the insurance company. As long as I can afford to replace my bike if something happens to it, I'm farther ahead not to insure it.

    Time? On average, over the last ten years, I'd say 170 hours per year. Some years more, some less.

  19. #19
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    I'm well into five figures. I rationalize this expense by noting that we only have one car in the family and we do not have any "recreational vehicles" other than our family bikes. If biking becomes the family vacation and weekend activity (as opposed to lots of other more expensive passtimes such as boating), then it's actually quite inexpensive on a per person / per hour / per sheer enjoyment / per quality family time basis.

  20. #20
    Violin guitar mandolin
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    A first pass through this year hits $4000. This includes 2 new road bikes, fixing up the 2 old for commuting, a used Santana tandem, some clothes & tires.

    I figure during a typical week we spend 8 to 12 hours cycling with commuting & our morning rides.

    Fixing up the old bikes is making me realize that things do wear out!

    I doubt we'll spend much more on expensive things in the intermediate future. Might end up getting a better road bike for Gianna and maybe a road bike for our daughter if she ever gets off the back of the tandem. I'll get a single speed, maybe an IRO.

    That's about it. Although I have my commuting paramount advertised because I don't really need 2 road bikes.

  21. #21
    That darn Yankee TexasGuy's Avatar
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    I rode a used Mongoose bike for about 1 1/2 solid years and then I finally got tired of repairing the 10 year old bike. I thought bought myself a Mongoose XR-100 which I rode for a little over a year. Grand total put anywhere from 10-15k miles on those 2 bikes. I would say I spent around 350 bucks on everything during those 2 1/2 years. 50-75 of that was in WD-40 and a sprocket to remove the gear from the back tire.

    This year I finally spent about 1950 on a bicycle and actual cycling gear - like a helmet, shorts etc. I'd like to spend another 2-4k on another bicycle but currently it is low on the totem pole as I would rather have a new vehicle and a laptop.

    Time - I used to do an hour -2 hours a day. I usually have been riding 5 days a week although the last 2 weeks i've barely ridden 3 days a week.
    Life is about hanging onto what you think is important and finding out what really is important.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member Albany-12303's Avatar
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    Probably about $400 per year for the last five years (all three of my bikes are between 6 and 8 years old - so I am not including the cost of these). My $ went towards repair, new tubes/tires, accessories (lights, panniers- for my old commuter) and cycling shoes/clothing. So about $2,000 for the last five years - not too bad eh?

    Machka - Do you live in Toronto? If so - I dont blame you for having insurance. I lived there for 11 years and had 3 bikes stolen.

  23. #23
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    Over the past four years, I've spent about $2,200 total. About $1,600 is on the bike and the remainder is on repairs, rain pants, and the like. Nearly all of my riding is commuting, and it comes to about 1,200 hours of riding over this period.

    That seems quite a substantial outlay. However, riding to work saved me close to $10,000 over this four year period, mostly on parking costs, for a net benefit of over $7,000.

    Paul

  24. #24
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Over my lifetime that number would have varied significantly. There have been years when I did a lot of cycling but put almost no money into it and there have been years when I did a lot less actual cycling but paid a lot more for the cycling that I did. Looking back, I'd say that the fun factor has remained the same. To me one of the beauties of the sport is that you can make whatever you want of it.

    Other than occasional tire replacements and patching tubes, virtually all bicycling expenditures are optional or, like chains and cassettes, can at least be deferred. Many of us spend a lot of money on cycling specific clothes and fancy wheelsets because they make us feel better. That's fine - I do it too today, but I really don't need that stuff to have a perfectly enjoyable time. I hope that I never forget my days of piecing together bikes for me and my family from bits that I salvaged from around the subdivision on garbage day.

  25. #25
    Feral Member Nicodemus's Avatar
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    I've spent about 200 in the last year getting my bike up to scratch with the necessary bits.
    Have had to replace 2 bikes in the last 5 years.

    But apart from the exceptional costs of replacement, my yearly maintenance costs are under 200 a year, everything in.

    I average about 300km a week.
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