Good Article on Bike Prices

Discussion in 'General Cycling' started by scott43, Aug 23, 2017.

  1. scott43

    scott43 Making fresh tracks Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    3,166
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
  2. graham418

    graham418 Out on the slopes Skier

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2016
    Posts:
    914
    Location:
    Toronto
    Good article for those with deep pockets you mean!! $10,000 as the tipping point beyond which you get diminishing returns seems a little much. I would have thought it a lot lower.
    Not that I would begrudge a person spending that much on a bike.....:D
     
  3. SBrown

    SBrown Steve Admin Pugski Ski Tester

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2015
    Posts:
    4,494
    Location:
    Colorado
    Bike thieves hit a local shop here a few weeks back and made off with $62K worth. I joked that they stole three bikes; turned out it was seven, so I wasn't really that far off.
     
    Magi, SShore, Doug Briggs and 3 others like this.
  4. luliski

    luliski Out on the slopes Skier

    Joined:
    May 17, 2017
    Posts:
    987
    Location:
    California
    It does quote one bike builder as saying $2500 is the sweet spot for the average bike owner. I've ridden with people who had custom frames, wheelsets, everything possible on a bike built for them. I have no idea how much they spent, but they loved their bikes. I rode a Trek 2.1 (paid $1300) for years. It had an aluminum frame and carbon fiber fork and seatstays. I upgraded to a lighter wheelset and changed out the drive train because I wanted a compact double crank instead of a triple. I rode that bike alongside my friends on their custom bikes and others on expensive carbon fiber bikes and I was happy. But while shopping for a mountain bike, I bought a carbon fiber Specialized Amira with an Ultegra groupset. It retails at $2900, but I got it for $1900 because someone returned it after after buying it for his wife (she didn't like the color). I've done a little over 200 miles on it, and really like it so far. I don't see myself needing a "better" road bike.
     
  5. scott43

    scott43 Making fresh tracks Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    3,166
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    I thought the $2500 sweet spot was good. I'd say even a little less.
     


  6. KevinF

    KevinF Gathermeister-Stowe Team Gathermeister

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    1,254
    Location:
    New England
    I've ridden enough miles with enough different people that I've learned one truth about cycling:
    The legs matter. The bike -- not so much.

    I've dropped people on all kinds of bikes, and I've been smoked by guys (and gals...) riding some dumpster POS.

    http://www.bikeradar.com/us/news/article/mountain-biker-wins-road-race-on-his-hardtail-22736/
     
    Rainbow Jenny likes this.
  7. luliski

    luliski Out on the slopes Skier

    Joined:
    May 17, 2017
    Posts:
    987
    Location:
    California
    It seems like at much less, the components aren't as good, though.
     
  8. LKLA

    LKLA Out on the slopes Skier

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2017
    Posts:
    853
    Location:
    New York
    I think $2,500 - $3,000 is the sweet spot for most people who are looking to ride semi regularly. Less if you are going to ride 1-2 per month. Beyond that you either just like the more expensive bike more or you are looking to compete very seriously and need the best equipment.
     
  9. AmyPJ

    AmyPJ Let's go! Pugski Ski Tester

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    3,035
    Location:
    Ogden, UT
    This is the truth. I will say, for me, it's come down to the things like a better drivetrain, better brakes, things that aren't discernible necessarily between my $2500 Trek and my $5000 Trek. But, as I've ridden more and more the past 3 years, I can definitely tell the nuanced differences between my "old" $2500 bike (that I have since sold) and my new, more expensive one. I HAVE gotten faster, but for downhill, I think the different geometry and the dropper post on the new bike made the difference there. For climbing? The carbon IS lighter, but I think it's just me getting stronger overall.

    So, while I appreciate the differences in the Shimano XT drivetrain vs. the Deore, and and XT brakes, etc. is it really worth $2500 more? I'm not sure. Makes one think, for sure.
     
  10. Monique

    Monique bounceswoosh Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    8,256
    Location:
    Colorado
    Point of order: these dollars are Canadian, right?

    The article seems to be road bike specific. I wonder what the "all the bike they'll ever need" numbers would be for a mountain bike. I have no experience with what makes the difference for a road bike, but MTBs (not rigid) have a lot more moving pieces, which adds complexity, which I would think would add cost. But at the same time, you can choose your tradeoffs - hardtail vs full suspension, etc.

    For that matter, I don't know what "all they'll ever need" means. No one (who doesn't earn their living racing) "needs" a lighter wheelset or a reliable shift under load. Seems like a pretty arbitrary choice to say "$2500, yup, that's it."

    They're definitely way better and smoother. $2500 worth? That depends exclusively on personal budget and values. XT vs XTR is where you see some pretty incremental performance differences - mostly weight - for big price differences. I wonder if, instead of choosing to save money with Deore, you'd be just as well off to get the XT or XTR from a couple of years ago, if you can find it in new old stock. That tech filters down quickly.

    (Is it really $2500? Yowza!)

    Then again, I once upgraded to an X0 component because the anniversary X0 edition matched my frame, so ... yeah. But guys, it was *really* pretty.

    Mmm. Who was it who said, the bike won't win you a race, but it can sure lose you a race? Something like that. I tend to believe it.
     
    Magi and AmyPJ like this.
  11. Monique

    Monique bounceswoosh Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    8,256
    Location:
    Colorado
    Oh. I did want to say. When I was demoing mountain bikes earlier this summer, the shop I ended up buying from had all ultra high end builds for their demo bikes. I had what I think is an understandable reluctance to drop down from the build "as tested" because I wasn't sure which changes would change my experience much. (In retrospect, I don't think I "needed" the upgrade from "carbon" to "fancy carbon."

    When my aunt and uncle were demoing in Park City, they went to Storm Cycles (Shout out - they hosted the Dirt Series and treated my aunt and uncle very well!), and the demo bikes were more moderate builds. I think that serves the customer better (but maybe not the bike shop profits).
     
  12. jmeb

    jmeb Stereotypical Front Range Weekend Warrior Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    Posts:
    1,528
    Location:
    Colorado
    Well crap. I better start spending a lot more then as I ride every day of the week, most months of the year.
     
    ScotsSkier and KevinF like this.
  13. cbk

    cbk AKA Carl ... Ski with great élan! Skier

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Posts:
    610
    Location:
    Del Mar
    Shut up, legs! :roflmao:

    As for me, I buy used frames on eBay in good condition if/when I find something I want, refurbish/rehab/rebuild them and then ride 'em like I stole 'em! Get the whole thing for way less... The one place I'll splurge on is wheels. If I hit a pothole, I wanna damage the pothole. N+1, baby!
     
    Philpug and AmyPJ like this.
  14. KevinF

    KevinF Gathermeister-Stowe Team Gathermeister

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    1,254
    Location:
    New England
    Wheels are one place I've noticed a difference... my former cycling buddy Cheryl switched out her "standard" wheels for some deep-rimmed model.

    I probably outweighed her by about 40 pounds and on downhills I could coast along and she'd have to pedal to keep up. Once she obtained those new wheels though, she'd be coasting right past me and I'd be the one pedaling to keep up.

    I'm certainly not a strong enough rider to maintain the type of speeds required for there to be much overall benefit from more aerodynamic wheels. I seem to remember various wind-tunnel tests have shown the difference to be seconds saved over the course of an hour at speeds (20, 25mph) greater than I can maintain. But as I said above -- still noticeable on the 35, 40mph short downhills that are prevalent here in New England.

    Some of them look cool though...

    Hey, if you can afford the bling and the bike keeps you riding -- great. I just don't think you'll be riding any faster on a $10,000 bike than you will on a $1,000 bike.
     
  15. KevinF

    KevinF Gathermeister-Stowe Team Gathermeister

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    1,254
    Location:
    New England
    I should also say that my experience is entirely on road bikes... MTB's with their suspension systems, etc. probably (?) have different considerations as to where the "break even" price point lies.
     
  16. Monique

    Monique bounceswoosh Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    8,256
    Location:
    Colorado
    Yeah, and that's where I'm not sure what "plenty for any rider" even means. I can't compare it to road bikes, having next to no experience with them.

    Most (all?) of the mountain bikes I have considered have frames in the $2k+ range (full suspension). That's certainly not necessary to get a nice bike, though. And as you said ... my friend on a much less expensive bike than mine, a hardtail no less, smoked me and comfortably rode a lot of downhill techy sections that I chose to walk. Rider, indeed.

    On the other hand, I picked up a used mountain bike that was about $800 new for the whole bike. Night and day. One major difference was that the fork had a coil shock and thus could not be adjusted, and you couldn't replace the coil with a beefier one. At my weight, the fork dove like a duck after a tasty fish, even riding around on cement. So I had to replace the whole fork. Meh. The owner had bought it for his teen daughter to ride, but as soon as it was clear she would ride a lot, he got her a nicer bike.

    Buuut ... if I had a tighter budget than I do and had bought a $800 bike without demoing a $*mumble* bike, I wouldn't have known any different. It's like buying a house - once you've decided on your budget, don't go looking at stuff outside of the budget. It'll only torture you.
     
  17. newfydog

    newfydog Out on the slopes Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2015
    Posts:
    465
    It seems the fad among my friends this year is some sort of $8000 road bike, replacing their $4000 road bike. I still prefer my steel bike, custom made in 1982.

    Check out Motobecane bikes from bikesdirect. They sell bike from the same Taiwan manufacturers as the name brands, with no overhead, at dealer type cost. For what friends are dumping on a road bike I've picked up XT/XTR level full suspension 29er mtb, a hardtail titanium mtb, a titanium cyclocross bike and a fatbike. Just ordered an ebike.
     
    ScotsSkier likes this.
  18. scott43

    scott43 Making fresh tracks Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    3,166
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    I suppose, just from my experience in that business, having ridden with customers and racers and commuters and everyone else, I would say less than 10% of our customers understood how to use gears properly. Emphasis on properly. I'd say 5% could use a bicycle to its potential, maybe less than that. So can you spend a lot on a bicycle? You bet. Can you justify it? Well..I suppose if you can afford it, why not? It's certainly not BAD to spend more if you can afford it..you do get a superior product. But for 95% of riders? No chance. So I think they're saying, if a shop is telling you to spend $5k on a bicycle, and you don't KNOW that you need to spend $5k..you probably don't have to.
     
  19. Monique

    Monique bounceswoosh Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    8,256
    Location:
    Colorado
    Off topic: What kinds of things do people do improperly? (wondering if I can learn something here) (I already know I shouldn't be shifting under load, but sometimes it happens ... )

    I mean, I can't use my bike to its potential. I know that. Every bike I've ever owned could be ridden much harder by a better rider. But I can tell when the shifting works better. I can tell you that a 1x drivetrain has made shifting a lot less annoying, more reliable, and I don't have to worry about chain slap. And the ridic expensive Eagle allowed me to get the 1x, because the granny gear is pretty much the same as my old bike. While I'll never use my bike to its full potential, my bike is still the one whose behavior on trails I liked best. I mentioned the drive train. Dropper posts are expensive, and I'm not great about using them, but with my old QR setup I never dropped at all because I'm a total princess about having my seat height exactly right, and it was too annoying to deal with on the ride. I sprang for a ratchet upgrade because, yes, I noticed the difference. Etc etc.

    So, while I can't use my bike to its full potential, I still am aware that many of its expensive features - down to the frame itself - improve my riding experience. I guess I'm confused. I see "Can you use the bike to its full potential?" as a question unrelated to "Can you tell the difference when you spring for higher end frames/components?" And to me, the latter seems more relevant.

    Are you just saying "Yes, but you don't *need* it" in a different way?
     
  20. scott43

    scott43 Making fresh tracks Skier

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2015
    Posts:
    3,166
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Yeah, that's part of it. Anticipation, choosing the correct next-gear so they don't waste momentum spinning endlessly or grinding unnecessarily, which gear they should actually be in to maintain their best cadence, standing versus sitting gear. Technique, including proper use of gearing, is probably worth 10-15%. Most people probably don't care and that's ok. Not being judgemental, some people just don't care.


    Well I think they're saying that. :D And I'm just agreeing with them!
     

Share This Page


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice

We respect your privacy. your information is safe and will never be shared