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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 07-19-12, 02:21 PM   #51
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I usually ride a bike that I found at the dump and improved with components also from the dump (mostly). So there's no need to lie about the price.
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Old 07-21-12, 06:04 PM   #52
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...This got me thinking, if you have a nice bike that costs a lot- do you answer questions about the price? ...

How do you talk to people about the cost of your nicer bikes without setting off any alarms?
I never tell ANYONE how much I spent on a bike, even if that bike was a steal at a garage sale. It's none of their business. I will tell them where the nearest bike store is if they want to check one out for themselves (unless it was a garage sale deal), but as for actual price - nope. Even family.

I might type it on here if someone is asking about price range for a particular bike or bikes, but as for face-to-face, nope. If someone asks how much I spent or what it cost me, my standard answer is "less than I expected".
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Old 07-21-12, 07:25 PM   #53
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In the states I generally and hesitant to talk about prices. However, here in China it is common and expected, to discuss prices. It is a guaging mechanism; however, there is another factor.

Prices are all over the map in China. Something may sell for three times as much in another store and prices are often negotiable. It is also just part of being sociable to discuss prices in China. It is hard for an American to get used to.

I was riding with the club that mets at the Giant shop one afternoon and, at a rest stop, one of the men asked me how much my bike cost. In truth I did not remember, something that they found odd. However, the bike shop owner was with us and he did remember, and told them. In America that would have been unspeakably rude. In China it was not considered rude at all.

Another story; at a Hostel in Feng Huang I was locking up my bike in the enclosed courtyard for the night. The owner stopped me and commented that I should lock it in the storage room for the night. After all, he added, "its a 2995 RMB bike." We would have rounded; but he clearly took pride in knowing exactly how much that model cost.

Just different cultures.
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Old 07-22-12, 04:34 AM   #54
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In the states I generally and hesitant to talk about prices. However, here in China it is common and expected, to discuss prices.
<snip>
Just different cultures.
I've really never understood the hesitation in the USA to discuss cost of something or salary among friends. It almost seems like we gauge our worth by what we can afford (or in some cases buy but not afford) or how much we make. If a friend asks me how much I paid, I'll tell them. I'd likely follow up by the fact that I saved for 3 years doing side jobs and paid cash because I knew this is what I wanted.
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Old 07-25-12, 06:23 PM   #55
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While I was riding to the Optometrist the other day, an older man whom looked a little homeless came up from behind and was waiting at the corner with me for the light to change so we could cross; he was on a bike too.

He made some conversation with me asking about my bike, thinking they were 16" tires.

After a few questions about it he finally asked how much it cost. I felt that since he wasn't some young looking wanna-be gangster I didn't feel overly concerned about telling him. But usually, I don't like discussing how much I pay for things even with family.

But at the same time I understand why some people ask, it's because they're interested in the same things we are, don't know price market fully and want to know if its good quality because they don't wanna buy an inferior product.
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Old 07-25-12, 07:14 PM   #56
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Discussions about the cost of my bike never take place in the presence of my bike. It's come up when I talk general bike quality with people on the job, but when I'm out and about, no one speaks. (I've been told by one relative, a through-and-through 'gangsta', that I looked like I could f*** up some sh**, so people don't mess with me. Others in the hood think I'm a cop. I don't correct their impressions....)
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Old 07-29-12, 06:19 PM   #57
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I just tell them 35 ducats and a florin or two.
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Old 07-29-12, 08:52 PM   #58
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On my touring bike, I offer to trade their nice car for my bike.

My beater road bike, exactly what I paid for it, $50.
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Old 07-29-12, 08:54 PM   #59
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I tell them the truth:

"This bike? I pulled it out of a dumpster."

"This bike? I got it from the city dump."

"This bike? I got it at the pawn shop for $50."
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 07-29-12, 09:43 PM   #60
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I tell them the truth:

"This bike? I pulled it out of a dumpster."

"This bike? I got it from the city dump."

"This bike? I got it at the pawn shop for $50."
I found it in the LBS dumpster, just under a couple of Colnagos.
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Old 07-30-12, 12:02 AM   #61
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As a car-light family and a serious bike-a-holic we have extra money around to make sure the bikes we ride are nice. Also, in an effort to reduce an hour or so of driving a day my wife was doing to get to work we moved to a very nice house in a spotty neighborhood. (some parts are great other parts are...well... not so great.

Anyhow, I recently bought a CETMA that I've been rolling around town and yesterday we took the kids up to this fountain outside the public library. A guy who was there with some kids (that set off my "shady" radar) started asking me about the CETMA. He said he'd seen me riding around the hood. I tried to stay vague about the price and talked about keeping the price down by building it up but he kept pushing.

This got me thinking, if you have a nice bike that costs a lot- do you answer questions about the price? I didn't feel comfortable telling this guy (who may have been a millionaire but probably not) that I spent that kind of money on a bike. Partly because it is a niche bike but mainly because I don't know him from Adam and don't want to share my personal financial info with him.

How do you talk to people about the cost of your nicer bikes without setting off any alarms?
I'm from Denver, so I'm curious: what spotty neighborhood are you talking about? I think most areas of Denver are actually reasonably safe, but a few areas are not at all safe. (One or two areas are actually a bit scary...)

Sometimes people do approach me and say nice things about my bicycle, but no one has actually asked me how much it costs. When they do strike up a conversation, I usually just say "Thank you." More often than not, the person doing the talking also has a bike, so then it just turns into a geek fest. But then, you're not talking about that, are you?
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Old 07-30-12, 07:35 AM   #62
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The cheapest car I bought was a 95 GMC pickup for $200. Yep, two hundo's. Running fine, street legal, and title in hand. Needed a new heater core and the guy was moving overseas and couldnt take it with him.
That's more than i paid for my two bikes. I got 'em both for free! Which doesn't reflect their real value. At the time they were given to me they each had a market value in the $75 to $150 range. Then I spent $900 converting one of them to an e-bike.

If someone asked me what I paid, i'd say they were given to me by a friend.
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Old 07-30-12, 08:30 AM   #63
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I just tell them 35 ducats and a florin or two.
As long as you didn't pay 35 ducatis for it!
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Old 07-30-12, 03:44 PM   #64
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I found it in the LBS dumpster, just under a couple of Colnagos.
Every one of the statements I made is true.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 08-01-12, 10:39 AM   #65
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I don't have a problem with telling folks the cost of my bikes, there just "entry level" road hybrids and WHEN I do tell them the reaction is the same, "$600 dollars for a BICYCLE, that's crazy!!" LOL, you should see their jaws drop when I tell the some high end racing bikes are $10,000 and up, they just do the "gaping fish" look and walk away!
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Old 08-06-12, 01:04 PM   #66
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Why am I not surprized that all of these people never listened to their mother?....... I don't tell strangers anything.....cops included.

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Old 08-06-12, 11:39 PM   #67
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I don't think I've ever been asked by anyone how much my bikes cost (commuter or otherwise), and I do have nice looking bikes...

Closest thing I've experienced was when a (presumably) homeless man asked me "is that bike valuable?" after watching me very carefully and deliberately secure the bike with a U-lock and cable. My response was "it's valuable to me, since it's how I get around."
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Old 08-11-12, 03:48 PM   #68
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8 cents a mile is what it costs me to ride a bike.
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Old 08-11-12, 06:14 PM   #69
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Having a bike that's under six hundred dollars makes me feel better than owning a bike over a thousand dollars.
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Old 08-11-12, 08:28 PM   #70
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8 cents a mile is what it costs me to ride a bike.
You figured this out? I had put my cost per mile at about $0.12, but maybe that was high (spend too much refurbing bikes I never ride.)
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Old 08-11-12, 10:19 PM   #71
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I only tell someone how much my bike is worth (or at least how much I have spent on it) if they comment on how nice a bike I have... $4,000 so far...
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Old 08-11-12, 11:05 PM   #72
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In the states I generally and hesitant to talk about prices. However, here in China it is common and expected, to discuss prices. It is a guaging mechanism; however, there is another factor.

Prices are all over the map in China. Something may sell for three times as much in another store and prices are often negotiable. It is also just part of being sociable to discuss prices in China. It is hard for an American to get used to.

I was riding with the club that mets at the Giant shop one afternoon and, at a rest stop, one of the men asked me how much my bike cost. In truth I did not remember, something that they found odd. However, the bike shop owner was with us and he did remember, and told them. In America that would have been unspeakably rude. In China it was not considered rude at all.

Another story; at a Hostel in Feng Huang I was locking up my bike in the enclosed courtyard for the night. The owner stopped me and commented that I should lock it in the storage room for the night. After all, he added, "its a 2995 RMB bike." We would have rounded; but he clearly took pride in knowing exactly how much that model cost.

Just different cultures.
It is so funny for me to read this post because the same thing happens to me here in Mexico. People are always curious to know how much something costs. It's makes very uncomfortable to discuss the price of an item that's worth someone's full year salary here. So, I always have to come up with something... "Oh, it was a present!"... still odd because they really think you're just blowing them off (like yeah right! you never looked up the price of that thing?) I still haven't come up with a diplomatic answer that doesn't sound rude.
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Old 02-18-14, 01:36 PM   #73
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I suspect that those who have never or rarely been asked this question ride a fairly normal bike - normal as defined by a general public awareness: "two wheels, handlebars, seat, pedals and normalish frame layout." Unless the frame is highly different in someway that jumps out visually, people tend to gloss over and not really look at what is "normal".

I am buying a long-john style cargo bike (box between rider and front wheel) to transport my three little ones...thus our family took two of them (bullitt and cetma) out on test rides on a trail in Wash DC for about 3 hours one weekend day. I can tell you that I got asked how much they cost about 6 times that short day. At least three of those times people did not know that it was a test ride rather than my bike (I think that people feel freer to ask price when something is being tested for purchase). I think that the visually different bikes probably get more comments/questions in general and that the price question is frequently one of them.

We also ride a longtail, and although there are less questions (it looks more normal and many people surpisingly don't notice it's long end at all) we still get the $$ Question. My answer to this question is still evolving, but right now it is:

"My husband bought it used on craigslist. I don't know how much they go for these days, this one my cheep-skate husband got it for a bargain after it had been on craigs for over a month and no one else wanted it. It is hard to sell used ones because they are so unusual so we were able to get it used cheap on Craigslist. I didn't ask about price or he would tell me an hours worth of details about bike parts and what they all would cost. He buys the bikes, I just ride them."

I use some version of the above all the time and it seems to work well. It lets them know they ain't going to get a good price for it and you didn't pay that much. My husband uses about the same line but inserts wife in there. He can be pretty convincing as he really doesn't know anything about the bikes, he does just ride them.

Last edited by croppera; 02-18-14 at 02:22 PM.
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Old 02-18-14, 03:00 PM   #74
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I suspect that those who have never or rarely been asked this question ride a fairly normal bike - normal as defined by a general public awareness: "two wheels, handlebars, seat, pedals and normalish frame layout." Unless the frame is highly different in someway that jumps out visually, people tend to gloss over and not really look at what is "normal".

I am buying a long-john style cargo bike (box between rider and front wheel) to transport my three little ones...thus our family took two of them (bullitt and cetma) out on test rides on a trail in Wash DC for about 3 hours one weekend day. I can tell you that I got asked how much they cost about 6 times that short day. At least three of those times people did not know that it was a test ride rather than my bike (I think that people feel freer to ask price when something is being tested for purchase). I think that the visually different bikes probably get more comments/questions in general and that the price question is frequently one of them.

We also ride a longtail, and although there are less questions (it looks more normal and many people surpisingly don't notice it's long end at all) we still get the $$ Question. My answer to this question is still evolving, but right now it is:

"My husband bought it used on craigslist. I don't know how much they go for these days, this one my cheep-skate husband got it for a bargain after it had been on craigs for over a month and no one else wanted it. It is hard to sell used ones because they are so unusual so we were able to get it used cheap on Craigslist. I didn't ask about price or he would tell me an hours worth of details about bike parts and what they all would cost. He buys the bikes, I just ride them."

I use some version of the above all the time and it seems to work well. It lets them know they ain't going to get a good price for it and you didn't pay that much. My husband uses about the same line but inserts wife in there. He can be pretty convincing as he really doesn't know anything about the bikes, he does just ride them.
So how much did you pay for it?
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Old 02-18-14, 04:23 PM   #75
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So how much did you pay for it?
Ha, as If I would answer straight. I will say that when I added up components and such I think I paid 35-40% retail for my big dummy.

Hey, the part about limited interest in odd specialty bikes was true - the seller did post it on craigs for more than a month and got no takers for it at his list price. I had no idea what I was getting until I did some research on the components. He had it built up too nice for the average craigslist user to see anything but the price (which my LBS said was fair). He came down by 30% from his asking price for me just because selling it local was easier than finding a buyer and shipping. I can't imagine trying to ship a surly big dummy.

So, my reply to the price question is rather true even if it does evade the actual price issue.
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