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Raketmensch 04-17-06 10:29 AM

What was I thinking?
Okay, here's a question for you: What's the dumbest cycling purchase you've ever made? Something that seemed like a good idea at the time but turned out to be next to worthless (or worse)?

I'll start: A pair of Oakley sunglasses. A hundred-plus bucks for a pair of sunglasses that works no better than something you can get for twenty bucks. And to make matters worse, the interchangeable lenses fall out practically at the slightest touch. Utter junk. Dumbest cycling purchase I've made (so far).

Anybody else?

FarHorizon 04-17-06 10:35 AM

A set of fenders. Since I won't ride in the rain, I never even put them on. Sold them on e-Bay for a fraction of what I paid. Other boondoggles I can think of include ultra-light wheels (I'm a Clydesdale), a triple front crank (I've ended up with a single front chain ring), clipless pedals (for my riding style, sneakers and platforms rule), a cycle computer (given to me by a neighbor for Christmas but not yet installed), and a "Cyclepassion" calendar (embarrasses my entire family).

ken cummings 04-17-06 10:45 AM

Solid tires. Came back from work and found my wife had had them put on after hearing my complaints about flats.

Blackberry 04-17-06 02:08 PM


Originally Posted by FarHorizon
a "Cyclepassion" calendar (embarrasses my entire family).

I always say a picture is worth a thousand claims of embarrassment:

stapfam 04-17-06 02:29 PM

Dumbest bit I ever bought for Riding was a Pair of Coolmax Shorts- Knee length for winter riding but they were Bib Shorts. They should change the name of this material to FREEZE Max. Why they were knee length I will never know as they took the brunt of the cold- even on the hottest day of the year on a local ride. That material does not keep you warm and in fact lowers the body temperature where it touches by good few degrees.

NOS88 04-17-06 02:58 PM

Dumbest thing I ever got was a "Flick Stand" (at least that's what I remember as the name.) It was a small device you put on your down tube and a little wire bit hinged down of both sides of the front tire. It was susposed to keep the front end from turning if you leaned your bike against something, hence, keeping it from falling over. Probably would have worked, but it was on a bike with front rack and about 25 lbs of gear in the bags. Busted the first time I used it.

howsteepisit 04-17-06 03:07 PM

At least one of my poorer purchases was a pair of the early Oakleys. I hated them. But the there are at least two $100.00 plus heaadlight systems, whose batterioes never really lasted long enough to be of any use except to get me home in an emergency. Then there is a bunch of saddles, very few of whicha re really comfortable. Maybe the worst purchase was that first good bike (Motobecane Grand Record) back in 1972. I've been spending money on bikes and bike stuff ever since. :-)

jppe 04-17-06 03:54 PM

I got a drink bottle for aero bars thinking I would not have to take my hands off the bars-it is the kind that sits down between the bars. The straw was not long enough and it didn't work well for my bars. It was much more trouble than it was worth.

GrannyGear 04-17-06 04:26 PM

A set of pop up (Profile I think) aero bars. Couldn't stop them rattling, they stuck up in a most ungainly way when not being used, and were a pain to do down on. Second was a pair of shorts from Performance which had a gel insert that was an inch thick and waffle patterned. Was like riding with a load in my pants...first and last experience with gel-padded shorts. Third was a behemoth sized barrel of replacement drink mix that tasted like distilled cow urine. There's a lot more out in my garage.

a77impala 04-17-06 04:40 PM

LED headlight, I have only used it once and was surprised how poorly it lit up the road.

webist 04-17-06 04:42 PM


Originally Posted by GrannyGear
Third was a behemoth sized barrel of replacement drink mix that tasted like distilled cow urine. There's a lot more out in my garage.

I too have stuck with the old, familiar distilled cow urine to avoid making stupid purchases while comparing products. Once used to its distinctive charachteristics it is hard to imagine drinking anything else. Prefreeze it though. Warm cow urine doesn't taste authentic.:)

DnvrFox 04-17-06 04:46 PM

A whole passle of Vista Lights and batteries (2 nicad, 1 nimh) which were on a "great" sale. I had them all over the place, used them 3 times, and tossed them a month ago. They discontinued production and I could not get appropriate replacement bulbs. The replacement bulbs I did get were the 2nd worst purchase. I am not a night rider, nor do I plan to be. I even fixed up an old helmet with a helmet light. Went for 2-3 night rides, and never again. Not my thing!

Velo Dog 04-17-06 06:00 PM

Hite Rite, high-dollar chain and a fourth chainring
You guys are geniuses compared to me...My first dumb purchase, about 1984, was a Hite Rite for my mountain bike, a spring that raised and lowerd the seat automatically when you reached back--going full bore through technical terrain--and released, then tightened your seat post QR ( Thornproof tubes were up there, too. They rode like they were carved out of mahogany. High-dollar chains are another. I've tried every kind of chain you can think of, from $9 cheapies to $60 "premium" versions, and at least on my bikes, there's not a dime's worth of difference in noise, shifting or life. I use $12 SRAM chains on everything now, no complaints at all. And way back in the '80s, I bought a converter to add a fourth, 12-tooth chainring inside the small ring on my Mongoose mountain bike. It cost $29 when that was a lot of money, and it went on fine--but the derailleur wouldn't shift down to it. I carried that thing around for three years.
Nothing wrong with CoolMax shorts, though, IMO . I love those things in the summertime.

freeranger 04-18-06 06:44 AM

When I first started riding, it took a few tries before I finally realized that squishy gel saddles were really torture chambers and not meant for any distance at all (maybe 100 yards at best!). Then I tried a Selle Italia Tri-Matic, on a, too narrow and hard as a brick, even worse than the squishy gel! Other than that, I'd have to give Shimano brake pads (for V or cantilever brakes) a close second, for eating up rims and gathering metal slivers on the pads (now using Aztec or Kool-Stop, no problems).

RockyMtnMerlin 04-18-06 07:41 AM

Believe it ot not, in 1982 I tried that leather handlebar wrap. Not a tape but one piece for each side of the bars that you wet, and then actaullly sewed it onto the bar. When it dried it was supposed to shrink and make a tough cover. It was hard as heck to lace on and when dry it was hard as a rock and slippery to boot and I could never get it quite tight enough so that it did not move around on the bar. Of course they were on sale so I bought two sets.:eek:

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