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The cost of road cycling... in perspective

Road Cycling ďIt is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.Ē -- Ernest Hemingway

The cost of road cycling... in perspective

Old 07-07-05, 11:10 PM
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my58vw
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The cost of road cycling... in perspective

I though I would just throw this out and see some reactions from it...

Road cycling is expensive... but somethings are just a little more...

I help run a computer business, I do all the high end stuff, water cooling, etc etc. I just built this little computer for a customer who wants to play their computer games a little faster.

AMD Athlon 64 FX 55 processor,
Dual 6800 GT Graphics cards, 2 GB Geil RAM
Raid Array, 1 TB
Full custom Water cooling, dual resivours, etc. etc.

Total - over 3k

I have done maybe 3 -4 of this type of computer in the last 6 months, and there is no shortage of 2k - 3k machienes also.

Now a nice road bike is about 3k, so I wonder what I would rather have... Cycling is not the only money pit around!
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Old 07-07-05, 11:15 PM
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Amen to that one... I'm totally aware of the costs involved in getting the latest and greatest computer stuff. Sadly, it's a poor investment since such things tend to be out of date rather quickly. A $3000 investment in a bike can last you many years and still be awesome stuff 5 years down the road. Plus all the health benefits. No comparison at all.
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Old 07-07-05, 11:18 PM
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What I find is that the typical "performance gaming computer" lasts about 3 years at the most. I have seen the 600 dollar graphics card from 2 years ago at 150 now, and with the advent of SLI technology graphics is getting more costly. What amazes me is how I see the same people all the time for that next 1k upgrade, etc etc.

There are so many comparisons too... look at Golf, and other sports. I attribute a Sunday Greens Fee to a race entry fee, about the same price. Now the Green's fee is not going to be picked up by the sponsors though!
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Old 07-07-05, 11:35 PM
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Waste of money.

Originally Posted by my58vw
I though I would just throw this out and see some reactions from it...

Road cycling is expensive... but somethings are just a little more...

I help run a computer business, I do all the high end stuff, water cooling, etc etc. I just built this little computer for a customer who wants to play their computer games a little faster.

AMD Athlon 64 FX 55 processor,
Dual 6800 GT Graphics cards, 2 GB Geil RAM
Raid Array, 1 TB
Full custom Water cooling, dual resivours, etc. etc.

Total - over 3k

I have done maybe 3 -4 of this type of computer in the last 6 months, and there is no shortage of 2k - 3k machienes also.

Now a nice road bike is about 3k, so I wonder what I would rather have... Cycling is not the only money pit around!
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Old 07-07-05, 11:42 PM
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Just be glad bike components don't get outdated as fast as Computers....
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Old 07-07-05, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by UmneyDurak
Waste of money.
Agreed.
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Old 07-08-05, 12:07 AM
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If you want a hobby that really chews up the cash - get a boat - anything with the word "marine" in front of it adds 300% to the price, wheras the word "cycling" is only good for 100%
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Old 07-08-05, 03:12 AM
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Originally Posted by ADA23
If you want a hobby that really chews up the cash - get a boat - anything with the word "marine" in front of it adds 300% to the price, wheras the word "cycling" is only good for 100%
I wonder why that is? I don't see anything special about "marine" stuff usually. I think it's because people who own boats and such are perceived to be in a higher income bracket?
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Old 07-08-05, 04:24 AM
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Originally Posted by cryogenic
I wonder why that is? I don't see anything special about "marine" stuff usually. I think it's because people who own boats and such are perceived to be in a higher income bracket?
Partly, I suspect. But in the higher end, especially sailing, quality materials (stainless mostly in my day), and need for very high quality for the large stresses, probably accounted for some as well.

I have done sail and power boating, spin and fly fishing, golf, ice hockey (being a goaler was not cheap ), hi-fi/stereo, sportscars, woodworking, brewing, and a few other costly hobbies over the years. The one I never got far enough in to go broke on was flying (fortunately).

Now my last hobby is cycling, and it really doesn't look that bad compared to the rest.
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Old 07-08-05, 04:29 AM
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I used to own and autocross a Mazda RX-7 Turbo.

Talk about a money waster. I could own a fleet of Colnagos for what I spent on building that car up.
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Old 07-08-05, 04:32 AM
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Originally Posted by UmneyDurak
Waste of money.
The people spending $3k on a computer would probably also say the same thing about us spending anywhere nearly the same amount on bikes. What's the big deal? If gaming keeps them happy, then so be it.
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Old 07-08-05, 04:54 AM
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I showed this to my wife....she laughed.
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Old 07-08-05, 05:58 AM
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I've spent about $700 on my computer, and about the same on my bike. They both do everything I need them to do.

Tell me this. Unless a person is really serious into games, do they really need a super fast computer?

(Does this question sound familiar?)
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Old 07-08-05, 06:05 AM
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Originally Posted by my58vw
There are so many comparisons too... look at Golf, and other sports. I attribute a Sunday Greens Fee to a race entry fee, about the same price. Now the Green's fee is not going to be picked up by the sponsors though!
First, I think Sunday green fees might be a bit more. However the difference is that if I want to ride on a Sunday, I can do so for free unless I've entered a race. But if I want to play golf on a Sunday, I have to pay regardless of whether I'm just out for my own enjoyment or competing in a tournament.

I think I'd go broke faster playing golf every weekend than I would cycling.

BTW, what kind of golf clubs do you get for $700 (what I've invested in my bike)
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Old 07-08-05, 06:20 AM
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Originally Posted by gmason
The one I never got far enough in to go broke on was flying (fortunately).
True, true. I used to fly before I got married and settled down and this is how I justify my cycling addiction to my wife. "It's either $20 here, $50 there, or $200 every weekend!"
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Old 07-08-05, 06:22 AM
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Originally Posted by MrCjolsen

BTW, what kind of golf clubs do you get for $700 (what I've invested in my bike)
You can get a great set of irons for that amount.

But then you will need a putter, driver, 3 wood, stong and weak sand wedges, and maybe a utility wood.

Golf equip is $ comparable to Bike Equip in my experience.

you could get a whole set of adequate clubs or a bike for 700 and it would be fine for the abiliity of most people, but most who are serious about it will plunk down more coin for equipment than they really need.

Originally Posted by MrCjolsen
I think I'd go broke faster playing golf every weekend than I would cycling.
And we are not even talking about gambling yet , which could run you some dough.
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Old 07-08-05, 06:48 AM
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Two acres, house, a wife and 1 kid. Biggest money pit going. Hell my property taxes are $5k per year.
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Old 07-08-05, 06:51 AM
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Here is some big time perspective, I raced Formula Fords/Formula Continentals for all most 20 years. Here are my weekend costs from last season '04:

Tires $790.00 (I used one set of tires for the weekend a lot of guys used 2)
Fuel $150.00
Entry Fees $375 double race weekend
Gas/Food/Lodging for me and my two man crew $500
Wear and tear on car $300 ave
Misc $250

Total $2365

This was for SCCA amature racing. My equipment was in the $45k-$50k range for the initial investment. I alway get a real kick out of guys who complain about the $25 buck they have to pay to race a crit.
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Old 07-08-05, 06:51 AM
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I see it this way. Spending tons of dough on bike stuf will usually get you a comment similar to "Wow, you're nuts", whereas spending that much just to play video games will ALWAYS get you a "Geez dude, you're a dork". I prefer the first.
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Old 07-08-05, 06:53 AM
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Yeah, $3k seems like a lot for a bike, but try finding a decent boat or snowmobile for that much And unlike golf, it doesn't cost me $30-50 to go out on my bike every time.

Cycling isn't inexpensive, but it's not as much as many other recreations.

-murray
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Old 07-08-05, 06:59 AM
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What on earth does a gamer need a 1 Terabyte Raid array for? I know they tend to look at a lot of porn but thats just a bit rediculous.
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Old 07-08-05, 07:08 AM
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This is a GREAT thread!

I have WAY too many hobbies, etc. ... so I can truly relate:

1. Cycling (4 bikes: Tandem, 2 Singles, & Mtn Bike)
2. Computers (I run my own side business including web hosting & design)
3. Motorcycling (I had 3 bikes at one time a few months ago)
4. Hiking/Backpacking/Camping
5. Digital Cameras & Digital Video Cameras
6. Woodworking (the BIG tools ... Delta Unisaw, 15" Jet Planer, etc.)
7. ... and the list goes on and on ...

Shoot, cycling isn't near as expensive as I see cycling as more of a "spend a good amount up front, and a bit at a time thereafter". My 1992 Trek 5200 cost me approx. $2k and my 1994 Trek 8000 Mtn Bike was approx. $850. I only ride 2k to 4k a year combined, so I use the same equipment until it wears out. I JUST bought my 2nd pair of road shoes this season afte about 12yrs of use on my old Shimano shoes. So, I can't really complain.

My biggest money pit so far is: Motorcycling & Woodworking!!

Motorcycling: 2003 Honda VFR800 (non-ABS) cost $10k. In the 3 years I've ridden it, I have spent $7,500 on accessories, aftermarket goodies, protective gear, etc. That is 75% of the original cost!

Woodworking: I haven't done this much over the past 3 or 4yrs. But, my garage has approx. $12k worth of equipment in it ... which I accumulated over a 7yr period. Just nuts I tell you!

I am a HOBBY freak ... I love my hobbies and switch back and forth all the time.

Cycling is my favorite and one I stick with the most ... that is why I have a 2005 Cannondale Road Tandem on order!!!

Now, if I only had the $7,500 for that new shiny Colnago President Carbon road bike .... I'd be happy ( ... but only till the next purchase!)
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Old 07-08-05, 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by my58vw
What I find is that the typical "performance gaming computer" lasts about 3 years at the most.
That's an interesting comment. I've got computers in my house that are 15 years old and still work fine. No, I can't install the latest software or OS upgrades on them, but they still work as they were intended. So by that standard, bikes and computers aren't so different. If you want to keep up with the latest advances in drivetrain improvements, lightweight components, carbon this and that, then occasionally an all-new bike is in order. But if you just want to ride, a bike will last forever. Same with a computer.
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Old 07-08-05, 07:10 AM
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Seems like any hobby can be expensive.

I had a sport bike (Yamaha R1), which got costly with maintenance, tires, gas, gear ect.

My last hobby was target shooting with pistols and reloading my own ammo. Reloading my own ammo, I thought was going to save me money, but I ended up just shooting more. I was shooting about $200-300 a month worth of ammo. And for some reason with target practice, having one gun is just not enough. So there is the expense of buying multiple guns.

For the folks who say 3k for a computer is a waste, itís all relative. Iím sure the gamers would say the same about spending the same on a bike.
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Old 07-08-05, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by cryogenic
I wonder why that is? I don't see anything special about "marine" stuff usually. I think it's because people who own boats and such are perceived to be in a higher income bracket?
I'm not really in the marine industry (at least I don't consider myself to be) but I design latches and other hardware for the marine industry so I get to visit a lot of boat builders. Seeing these things be built makes me wonder how they make any money at all. The amount of handwork that goes into building any sizeable boat is incredible. Unlike the automotive industry where everything is automated, nothing in the marine industry seems to be (except for maybe the high volume engines and electronics). Any fiberglass or wood work takes many steps and lots of man hours. And all that polished stainless steel doesn't come cheap even if it is all sourced from China. And boats in general are low volume. Low volumes makes the price of anything go up. A custom latch that might sell for $3 in the automotive world is $12 in marine all because of volume.

If you look at all the parts that go into a derailleur or brifter, plus all the special finishing on the higher end stuff, then factor in the small volumes, you quickly realize why bike parts are so expensive.
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