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Reluctance to Buy/Spend on a New Bike

Road Cycling “It 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.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Reluctance to Buy/Spend on a New Bike

Old 12-15-14, 10:33 PM
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newbie101
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Reluctance to Buy/Spend on a New Bike

This is a recurring issue for me. I now have the money to buy a new bike or a very nice used bike (under $1K), but I'm extremely tight fisted with the cash.

I already passed on a very nice secteur at a great price. I'm even reluctant to buy a $400 or $500 bike for whatever reason.

I'm fine with buying accessories of all kinds, but I'm reluctant to buy the big ticket item, where the investment could be close to a grand, rather than, say, $80 on a pair of shoes, or $30 for a tail light.

Any encouragement is welcome.
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Old 12-15-14, 10:49 PM
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Sounds like you know what you are doing, depending on your riding level you don't need a 1k bike. If you are planing to race a carbon bike is very popular. If you just do it for fitness, or common enjoyment, no need to get the 1k bike.
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Old 12-15-14, 11:28 PM
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If you already have a bike you like to ride, why bother getting another one? I have multiple bikes, and it's nice to have a rain bike, a commuter bike, a back up bike, what have you bike, but to be totally honest, I could totally make do with just one road bike.
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Old 12-15-14, 11:46 PM
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I totally understand. I shopped for almost a year; every night on craigslist looking for the right one, on manufacturer sites and every shop I went by. They were never right.

But then I found one that fit everything I wanted. It is older but it work and I am as fast as if I spent three times that on a new carbon bike and I venture to say that I am as fast within seconds of a carbon bike five times its price.

So don't despair, one will come your way. In the meantime keep looking and keep riding. I have a feeling you know exactly what you are looking for but have not found one it yet.
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Old 12-15-14, 11:57 PM
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Depending upon where you are, I've recently seen several VERY good used bikes on Craigslist here in San Diego selling for $250-350, and some perfectly useful bikes in the $100-150 range. But when those deals come along in something in your size, you need to be ready to move fast.

Also, if you can deal with a fixer-upper, you can often get a really good bike for well under $100. I recently paid $40 for a 2006 Specialized Hardrock Sport MTB that had two flat tires, but was otherwise in rideable condition. 8 years ago, that was a $350 brand new bike, and even used currently, if the tires were good the bike should have commanded $100-125.
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Old 12-16-14, 05:01 AM
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You can't take it with you. Life is too short to ride and old bike, buy a new one and enjoy it.
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Old 12-16-14, 05:31 AM
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Save up!
Seriously, this sounds like a perfect situation for dedicated savings. Even if affordability isn't really the issue, if it's easy to dispose of $30 here and $80 there, don't carve it out of your bank account, collect and set aside the cash in a special envelope or something. You'll quickly collect a substantial amount, and once you have, you'll be totally ready for when the right bike comes along - no excuses, no hemming and hawing about the money - in fact, you'll probably be eager to spend it.

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Old 12-16-14, 05:47 AM
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Buy a bicycle for, say $800 ... then ride it.

The first time you ride it, you've spent $800 on that day's entertainment/fitness.
The 10th time you ride it, you've spent $80/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 20th time you ride it, you've spent $40/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 50th time you ride it, you've spent $16/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 100th time you ride it, you've spent $8/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.

If you ride it 200 times over the next year, you'll have spent $4/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days. That's not bad at all! You're not likely going to get into a gym for $4/day.

At 200 rides/year ... by the end of your second year, you'll be down to $2/day. It's hard to find a cup of coffee for that anymore.
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Old 12-16-14, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by joeyduck View Post
I totally understand.
I think you are in the minority.
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Old 12-16-14, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by newbie101 View Post
this is a recurring issue for me. I now have the money to buy a new bike or a very nice used bike (under $10k), but i'm extremely tight fisted with the cash.
fify
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Old 12-16-14, 08:32 AM
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Do you ride a lot?

Does it make you happy?

Do you have a finite life span that could end at any time?

Then buy the damn bike!

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Old 12-16-14, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by newbie101 View Post

I'm fine with buying accessories of all kinds, but I'm reluctant to buy the big ticket item, where the investment could be close to a grand, rather than, say, $80 on a pair of shoes, or $30 for a tail light.

Any encouragement is welcome.
Do what I do. Buy individual components until you have enough for a bike. If you pick and choose carefully, and don't mind components a couple years old, and/or lightly used, you can get a nice bike for a good price.
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Old 12-16-14, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by thump55 View Post
I think you are in the minority.
I am I know but I am pragmatic and realize most improvements over the last fifteen years only marginally improve performance. So if I can find an excellent condition bike that has ultegra 6500 that is on a top frame and is fifteen years old for $450,I will get that over almost anything new.

If I was to buy a multi thousand dollar bike I would worry too much. I get nearly the same performance and I can take an all inclusive vacation with it.
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Old 12-16-14, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Buy a bicycle for, say $800 ... then ride it.

The first time you ride it, you've spent $800 on that day's entertainment/fitness.
The 10th time you ride it, you've spent $80/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 20th time you ride it, you've spent $40/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 50th time you ride it, you've spent $16/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 100th time you ride it, you've spent $8/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.

If you ride it 200 times over the next year, you'll have spent $4/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days. That's not bad at all! You're not likely going to get into a gym for $4/day.

At 200 rides/year ... by the end of your second year, you'll be down to $2/day. It's hard to find a cup of coffee for that anymore.
This is how I justified my last bike ( Colnage EP , full campy chorus , $9000.0) to my wife .
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Old 12-16-14, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by joeyduck View Post
I am I know but I am pragmatic and realize most improvements over the last fifteen years only marginally improve performance. So if I can find an excellent condition bike that has ultegra 6500 that is on a top frame and is fifteen years old for $450,I will get that over almost anything new.

If I was to buy a multi thousand dollar bike I would worry too much. I get nearly the same performance and I can take an all inclusive vacation with it.
I agree. I splurged on my Focus because it was half price brand new. But I have my eye on an '05 Felt F65 in mint condition with full Ultegra for $400. That's a good enough bike for 90% of cyclists.
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Old 12-16-14, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
That's a good enough bike for 90% of cyclists.
I would venture 98%.

But I did spend nearly two grand on my fully equipped LHT. But I am near 15¢ a km or 22¢ a mile. Far cheaper than a second car which was the other option.

Last edited by joeyduck; 12-16-14 at 12:33 PM.
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Old 12-16-14, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Buy a bicycle for, say $800 ... then ride it.
At 200 rides/year ... by the end of your second year, you'll be down to $2/day. It's hard to find a cup of coffee for that anymore.
I spent about 300,000 Lira on my Colnago.
Or in dollars, a little less than $300.

Now, 30 years later, that works out to be about $10 per year.

A new set of tires for the bike costs more than the annual depreciation on the original bike/frame. And, it has had many miles put on it.

Keep your eye on Craigslist, or even E-Bay, and find a bike you like in the price range you're wishing to pay.

If you start with a nice bike, you can hold onto it for a long time (or flip it for the next better thing). My brother is also still riding his bike from High School. I have no doubt that like me, he has also put a few upgrades into the bike over the years.
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Old 12-16-14, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Buy a bicycle for, say $800 ... then ride it.

The first time you ride it, you've spent $800 on that day's entertainment/fitness.
The 10th time you ride it, you've spent $80/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 20th time you ride it, you've spent $40/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 50th time you ride it, you've spent $16/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.
The 100th time you ride it, you've spent $8/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days.

If you ride it 200 times over the next year, you'll have spent $4/day on your entertainment/fitness for those days. That's not bad at all! You're not likely going to get into a gym for $4/day.

At 200 rides/year ... by the end of your second year, you'll be down to $2/day. It's hard to find a cup of coffee for that anymore.
That's a sobering approach. I own two $4000 customs. Looked at my mileage log. The first has done 200 rides. $20/ride. Ouch! The second has done 372. Still, $12.23. The good side is that I have done over a thousand rides on bikes that cost little over that span. Those bikes cost a few hundred each. Two are ongoing bikes that gets parts replaced as they wear out and crashed frames replaced for typically ~$80 each. Another was put on the road for $105 and parts on hand. Doubled that with a good seat. Doubled all of that with a nice paint job. Retired now with just under 8,000 miles. (That seat will get re-used!) And that '79 Peter Mooney that can be considered "paid for". A while ago.

So, over the past seven years: 1600 rides, say $10,000 in new bikes and upgrades (but not including maintenance). $6.25/ride or 21 cents/mile. Guess I got some riding to do to justify those new ones! And worse, I want to upgrade my winter geared bike with a "new" frame and crankset.

Big picture? It's all pretty cheap when I look at the medical expenses I don't pay and health issues I don't have (as long as I keep the rubber down).

Edit: I just did some quick and dirty math on the new Prius I bought in '13. Perhaps 860 drives of say 8 miles each. $25/start or up to twice that per round trip. And no health benefits.

Ben

Last edited by 79pmooney; 12-16-14 at 01:26 PM.
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Old 12-16-14, 02:27 PM
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At some point the want will out weigh the need and you will splurge. Keep shopping so you will be prepared.
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Old 12-16-14, 02:56 PM
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Originally Posted by spdracr39 View Post
At some point the want will out weigh the need and you will splurge. Keep shopping so you will be prepared.
Tell me about it... I just purchased a Emonda SLR Red 22 to replace my Madone 4.6 Rival.

But then, my youngest just graduated with is Masters this month, so i'll soon be having some extra cash on hand.

Last edited by GlennR; 12-16-14 at 03:15 PM.
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Old 12-16-14, 03:12 PM
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I was in almost exactly your same situation, and with your same mindset, for years. I was commuting on a nice 29er, primarily on asphalt, and ride some 7,000 miles that way, with some single track.

After putting off the purchase of a decent road bike for 4 years, I finally bought it. Now, after 4 months, I've ridden 3,000 miles on the new road bike--which I would have never done on the 29er.

More time riding with friends, more miles, much better condition, happier, fitter. ... it was a great decision for me.
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Old 12-16-14, 03:19 PM
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Look at it this way, the longer you wait the less time you'll have to ride that new bike.
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Old 12-16-14, 04:24 PM
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I found that purchasing a nice bike made riding much more enjoyable for me (and, thus, motivated me to ride more) because the improvement in ride quality compared to my former bike - a 9-year old hybrid - was huge. Riding more, in turn, has resulted in substantial improvement in my health. Thus, it was all worth it to me. That being said, if you don't think buying a new bike will be a material improvement over your current ride, just save the money for buying the accessories you want to buy or treat yourself to a nice trip with your bike. It's a win-win either way.
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Old 12-16-14, 05:28 PM
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Originally Posted by TallTravel View Post
I was in almost exactly your same situation, and with your same mindset, for years. I was commuting on a nice 29er, primarily on asphalt, and ride some 7,000 miles that way, with some single track.

After putting off the purchase of a decent road bike for 4 years, I finally bought it. Now, after 4 months, I've ridden 3,000 miles on the new road bike--which I would have never done on the 29er.

More time riding with friends, more miles, much better condition, happier, fitter. ... it was a great decision for me.
Awesome post. I'm in a similar situation: already have an MTB, getting by with it using it as an on road bike, but really jonesing for something more road specific.


Originally Posted by Up North View Post
Look at it this way, the longer you wait the less time you'll have to ride that new bike.
Nice!

Originally Posted by EthanHawley View Post
I found that purchasing a nice bike made riding much more enjoyable for me (and, thus, motivated me to ride more) because the improvement in ride quality compared to my former bike - a 9-year old hybrid - was huge. Riding more, in turn, has resulted in substantial improvement in my health. Thus, it was all worth it to me. That being said, if you don't think buying a new bike will be a material improvement over your current ride, just save the money for buying the accessories you want to buy or treat yourself to a nice trip with your bike. It's a win-win either way.

Awesome post.

Thanks for your input everyone. Positive thinking alwas helps.
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Old 12-16-14, 05:40 PM
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No one here can or should tell you what to do. Do what you are comfortable with. All the bikes make the wheels go round and round. Get something and ride.
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