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Why are Modern Bikes So Expensive?

Old 04-08-24, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
...once you don't have me to kick around any more, I predict this thread will end in another victory celebration. Which is only fair. The internet is the place where anyone can feel victorious. Even the slow people.

The evil forces of C+V Mordor are once more vanquished and sent packing.
Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus!
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Old 04-08-24, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
...once you don't have me to kick around any more, I predict this thread will end in another victory celebration. Which is only fair. The internet is the place where anyone can feel victorious. Even the slow people.

The evil forces of C+V Mordor are once more vanquished and sent packing.
I play both sides.
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Old 04-08-24, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Atlas Shrugged
Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus!
...so all those many posts about all steel framed cycles being the same ? It's hard to hear you over the background chatter.
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Old 04-08-24, 04:42 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
...so all those many posts about all steel framed cycles being the same ? It's hard to hear you over the background chatter.
Oh?
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Old 04-08-24, 04:45 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer

My own conviction is that you need to be at an upper level of athletic ability and training to take advantage of these performance gains.
Just as a reminder, you said this earlier in the thread. It’s just complete bs that you spent way too much time and effort attempting to defend with all manner of distractions.
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Old 04-08-24, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey
The fastest bike, by 1:17 over the 25 miles, was the Canyon Endurace.... Of course, then I looked at the price, and geometry is moot anyway.
Which CE do you have?
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Old 04-08-24, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by spclark
Which CE do you have?
2020 CF SL 7 Disc
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Old 04-08-24, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey
2020 CF SL 7 Disc
Nice ride that'n! Thanks!

(Something worth saving up for!!)
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Old 04-08-24, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Atlas Shrugged
It's unfortunate that the discussion regarding the reasons behind the high cost of newer top-tier bikes is ending poorly. This could have been an interesting conversation about how this trend applies to many high-end consumer goods. Are manufacturers profiting from these top-end products, or are they considered more as Halo Products that don't generate revenue? For instance, given the costs associated with the S Works brand within Specialized, is it a profit center within the company once all the costs are apportioned?
To be fair to the thread, that's a very difficult question to answer. Getting a real answer would require access to companies' detailed financial data, which are private.

So we're left with speculation and opinion. Given my limited view into how companies operate, I speculate that company management sets a target range of gross profit margin, and any model that falls below that margin is soon to be cut from the product line. I suspect "halo products" that don't meet a company's profit target are quite rare.
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Old 04-08-24, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse
To be fair to the thread, that's a very difficult question to answer. Getting a real answer would require access to companies' detailed financial data, which are private.

So we're left with speculation and opinion. Given my limited view into how companies operate, I speculate that company management sets a target range of gross profit margin, and any model that falls below that margin is soon to be cut from the product line. I suspect "halo products" that don't meet a company's profit target are quite rare.
I think that depends on how they see the halo product - does it have to make a profit itself? Or is enough that it brings in buyers of less lofty products? Take the Aethos. In addition to the S-Works versions, there are cheaper, heavier, less expensively kitted versions, of which I suspect they sell more than the S-works versions. But I'm working in the same absence of data you mentioned. So this is all handwaving...
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Old 04-08-24, 05:34 PM
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My own conviction is that you need to be at an upper level of athletic ability and training to take advantage of these performance gains.
Originally Posted by PeteHski
Just as a reminder, you said this earlier in the thread. It’s just complete bs that you spent way too much time and effort attempting to defend with all manner of distractions.
...and I elaborated on that personal conviction, at Koyote 's request. Never dreaming that it would turn into another one of these festivals, of course. Why the need to go back there, when you have a much nearer and more fully formed explanation for my conviction ? Is it easier to strawman ?
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Old 04-08-24, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey
Oh?

​​​​​​...ask Atlas Shrugged . He'll be happy to tell you about it again. And I don't want to get in this forum's annoying habit, of presenting his opinion as a strawman.
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Old 04-08-24, 06:02 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
BTW, this one is coincidental from my ride today. I'm standing on the bridge, watching the river and stretching, at the turnaround. There's a guy on the other railing, opposite, with Di 2 equipped Canyon. Another guy rides up to him and asks for some help...he wants to borrow his battery to shift into a get home gear. His is dead. Canyon guy obliges, they exchange some banter about always carrying a spare battery, etc.

Originally Posted by 3alarmer
​​​​​​...ask Atlas Shrugged . He'll be happy to tell you about it again. And I don't want to get in this forum's annoying habit, of presenting his opinion as a strawman.
How about the annoying habit of being called out when spewing BS? After that complete fabrication, how can anything you say be taken seriously going forward? Or would you consider that a strawman argument as well.
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Old 04-08-24, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
...and I elaborated on that personal conviction, at Koyote 's request. Never dreaming that it would turn into another one of these festivals, of course. Why the need to go back there, when you have a much nearer and more fully formed explanation for my conviction ? Is it easier to strawman ?
What you mean your version of what “taking full advantage” actually means? Apparently only pros can “take full advantage”, while slower racers can only “appreciate” those performance gains. I just pointed out the simple fact that the slower racers actually derive a bigger time advantage from those aero gains. This was something that you obviously didn’t know, which is fine. You asked for an explanation, which I and another poster provided. Then you proceeded to move the goal posts rather than accept the simple facts.
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Old 04-08-24, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
Amateur riders actually get more benefit (time saved over a course) from reduced aero drag than pros. This may not be intuitive at their lower speeds, but it is a fact.
I hear this a lot .... I think it is a case of "looks good on paper."

The "benefit" of aero is going faster for a given power output, or going farther at a given speed. Also, a lot of aero is Not the bike, but the rider. A slightly plump rider sitting sot of upright riding at 17 mph average is getting almost no aero benefit in reality, despite what the number s say (sort of like how sanding the paint of your bike will indeed make you faster mathematically, but in reality the 80 or 100 grams in meaningless ... lost in the noise.)

Also, the "benefit" of finishing a ride a few seconds quicker one one bike as opposed to another is not really even an issue for most non-pros (unless they have that specific drive. I actually like being out on the bike and being able to ride a little longer for a given amount of energy Sounds great ... but how does that benefit me? I can arbitrarilly add a few hundred meters to my ride ... by circling the block or something ... but since my ride is determined by my route, and time on the route is not an issue ... am I really getting any benefit by going more around the block at the end of my ride? Is being able to go a few hundred meters more on a given amount of energy a "benefit"? Also since my energy differs every day ...

So, am I actually saving a few seconds? Am I actually benefiting from saving .002 watts of energy over a ride? Also, if because of my rising posture i am actually not aero might the added weight of the aero frame actually a net cost?

The bike I ride most often has rim brakes and shallow rims ... and (bows head in shame) exposed cables coming out of the brifters. But .... it accelerates quickly with its lighter, less aero wheels---for the first three pedal strokes. it is comfortable for rides as long as my body can handle. I built it with zero care for "aero," but instead tried to make it light without breaking the bank. it is a really fun ride.

If "benefit" to me meant "I can cover a given course a few seconds faster on this bike, all else being equal" then sure, get the heavier aero frame, with the complicated cables-through-stem construction, the heavier deep-dish wheels .... but since i ride to enjoy the time I spend riding .... I mean, if we are really going to "benefit" from aero, shouldn't we all be riding TT bikes, and hurting ourselves making sure we always stay in a tight tuck?

To me, "aero" is the new "x hundred grams lighter" or ".00x percent laterally stiffer and .000x percent more vertically compliant." For almost every rider, pursuing marginal gains is a matter of personal preference, and the only real "benefit" is psychological.
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Old 04-08-24, 06:54 PM
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Interesting perspective from an old rider, coach, team manager (manager of one Lance Armstrong) on why we are seeing so many major wrecks with more severe injuries.

-Stiffer frames
-stiffer wheels
-deep section wheels
-narrower bars
-angled brakes
-geometry that promotes riding on the hoods with arms bent vs in the drops.

The latest Vingo wreck - high speed, stiff unforgiving bike, probably the front wheel locked from a bouncing and disc brakes.

My point - this sport is really about the riders. If they were all on similar machines of any type, even old school steel - the racing would be the same.
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Old 04-08-24, 06:56 PM
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Well, you know, in the example I mentioned, either on this thread or one remarkably similar the difference in average speed is only 1.6%, but it adds up to 1:17 over 25 miles If you don't care about that, that's fine, but it's a real benefit.
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Old 04-08-24, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Atlas Shrugged
How about the annoying habit of being called out when spewing BS? After that complete fabrication, how can anything you say be taken seriously going forward? Or would you consider that a strawman argument as well.

...I know you cannot believe it, and I know it's anecdotal.
But it really did happen across the bridge from me, at the turnaround point of my ride that day.


Your disbelief does not render it any less true. If anything, that's a plus.
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Old 04-08-24, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Jughed
Interesting perspective from an old rider, coach, team manager (manager of one Lance Armstrong) on why we are seeing so many major wrecks with more severe injuries.

-Stiffer frames
-stiffer wheels
-deep section wheels
-narrower bars
-angled brakes
-geometry that promotes riding on the hoods with arms bent vs in the drops.

The latest Vingo wreck - high speed, stiff unforgiving bike, probably the front wheel locked from a bouncing and disc brakes.

My point - this sport is really about the riders. If they were all on similar machines of any type, even old school steel - the racing would be the same.

...that link I gave, to bicycle aerodynamics considerations, mentions this, especially with regard to crosswinds and wheel rims.

The other main consideration when optimising the aerodynamic performance of equipment is the environmental conditions that will likely be encountered on the road or track. Road cyclists compete within a turbulent atmospheric boundary layer that exhibits gusty wind profiles that are rarely aligned with the direction of travel. Cross-winds result in flow asymmetries being generated around the bicycle and rider, as demonstrated in Fig. 9a, which not only affects the magnitude of the aerodynamic drag force but also generates additional side forces, rolling, and yaw moments. These forces and moments can result in a cyclist being unable to maintain control of their bicycle. Typically, aerodynamic styling to minimise drag is at odds with reducing aerodynamic side loads, rolling, and yaw moments and is why aerodynamic design to minimise these forces and moments is particularly important at the elite level. Gusty cross-wind conditions have resulted in a number of elite cyclists losing control during windy road racing events [67, 68]
Also, in the FWIW department:

​​​​​​​Although reducing wind resistance on the frame is important, it will always be limited as the majority of the wind resistance acts on the rider. Bicycles that have resulted in the largest gains in elite cycling performance have been achieved through designs that target the aerodynamics of rider position.
...

Compared to bicycle frame development of the early 90s, restrictions imposed by the UCI after 1996 have meant that aerodynamic improvements today are achieved through relatively minor modifications to a standard frame with aerodynamic tubing. Modern frames adhering to the “3:1 rule” are designed using both wind tunnel and CFD techniques with a focus on improving the aerodynamic interactions between the frame, front and rear wheels, and the rider.
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Old 04-08-24, 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
What you mean your version of what “taking full advantage” actually means? Apparently only pros can “take full advantage”, while slower racers can only “appreciate” those performance gains. I just pointed out the simple fact that the slower racers actually derive a bigger time advantage from those aero gains. This was something that you obviously didn’t know, which is fine. You asked for an explanation, which I and another poster provided. Then you proceeded to move the goal posts rather than accept the simple facts.
...instead of wasting more of your time on multiple response posts, where you repeat yourself, maybe you could link to a source for your numbers on this ? I'm fine with reading it, and the accompanying studies. believe I said I found the idea intriguing, which means I'm still thinking about and digesting it. The idea that slow people could derive some measurable benefit from current, high end, aero frames is new to me. If I really wanted aero benefit, personally, I'd buy a fairing for a few hundred bucks.
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Old 04-08-24, 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey
Well, you know, in the example I mentioned, either on this thread or one remarkably similar the difference in average speed is only 1.6%, but it adds up to 1:17 over 25 miles If you don't care about that, that's fine, but it's a real benefit.
...how did you spend that extra time ? I hope it was wonderful.
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Old 04-08-24, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
...how did you spend that extra time ? I hope it was wonderful.
Panting.
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Old 04-08-24, 08:46 PM
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Based on this thread and another one, I am convinced 3A is currently injured and sitting in his lazboy hammering away at keys instead of riding as claimed.
No chance someone can post this frequently and this much, while being healthy and active.


Get better soon, young man!
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Old 04-08-24, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr
No chance someone can post this frequently and this much, while being healthy and active.


Get better soon, young man!
...thanks, but how healthy do I need to be to ride an old steel Peugeot a couple of hours down to Old Sacramento and back ?
I did manage to jog about 40 minutes today, but it hurt more than the bicycle.

Mostly, I think everyone understands that it's not the quantity, but the quality of your posting, that makes for good reading.
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Old 04-09-24, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer
...instead of wasting more of your time on multiple response posts, where you repeat yourself, maybe you could link to a source for your numbers on this ? I'm fine with reading it, and the accompanying studies. believe I said I found the idea intriguing, which means I'm still thinking about and digesting it. The idea that slow people could derive some measurable benefit from current, high end, aero frames is new to me. If I really wanted aero benefit, personally, I'd buy a fairing for a few hundred bucks.
Well I didn’t have a specific source when I wrote that. I just knew it from previous research. RChung (a mathematician who analyses this kind of thing in detail) I believe has also pointed this fact out in previous debates. But anyway here’s a link to an article concluding pretty much the same and includes some test data for pro vs am speeds.

https://road.cc/content/feature/aero...r%20to%20smash!
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