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Money wasted on new bikes


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#1 davereo

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 04:35 PM

I often wonder what the percentage of bikes sold in the US get used regularly.  I am always amazed when I go to the LBS and see folks picking up new bikes.  I rarely run into them out riding on the roads and almost never see them on the single track trails in the area.

 

Anyone know of any statistical data?















#2 BHOFM

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 09:19 PM

I ride a lot of residential neighborhoods and it is amazing how many garages

are full of bikes, I mean, five, six or more. I heard once that about sixty five

percent of all bikes are ridden less that one hundred miles in their entire life.


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I am old, fat and ugly, but I have 20 million dollars so it don't matter!

#3 bkwitche

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 05:45 AM

Sad to think I'm cranking out mile on my diamond back podium 1 while plenty of people probably have 3000 bikes sitting unused in there garage. I don't know what possesses people. I saw a 2011 Roubaix Comp SL3 today on craigslist bought in January for 3700, 0 miles on it, now asking 3000.
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#4 sitzmark

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 06:57 AM

Around 18-20 million bikes sold (retail) per year recently ... how many are "collector bikes" and how many get used??   Maybe some answers somewhere in here:  http://www.ibike.org.../statistics.htm 

 

Bicycles ... skis .... kayaks ... motorcycles .... boats ... tennis racquets .... camping gear ....

 

Factor in work, school, children's sporting events. etc  .... and there just isn't time to use it all.  People have varied interests and many activities require equipment.   My parents purchased road bikes 20 years ago with the intention of staying fit.  They rode them for a while, then nada.  They purchased "mountain bikes" 15 years ago thinking that being away from traffic would be better and the same outcome.  They're in their 70's/80's now and continue to play tennis almost every day.  ...priorities.

 

Discretionary income is high in the US (or used to be :grin:) so garages are full of "collections".   I've got a few myself, so can't throw any stones.  I try to use it all , but can't with high frequency.  Skis (50-80 days/season)  and bike(4k+ miles/year) get high use. but other stuff varies.  Have a PWC that hasn't been out of the garage in 2 summers and there is a lake at the end of my driveway.  WTF?  ... priorities.   


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#5 davereo

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 08:06 AM

Sitzmark your post was the eyeopener. I wasnt surprised that the US was at the bottom of every catergory other than the Automobile. Sad.  I took a quick inventory of my unused sporting equipment and came up with a lot more than I thought.  Time is the biggest factor for everything and its the only thing we cant produce.  BTW I have a Min-pin "Rex" who is addicted to tennis balls he says hello to your parents.

 

BHOFM AKA Brad I'm not surprised that you know where every dormant bike lies in your surrounding community. I am willing to bet that we will see a great many of them reconditioned and hitting the roads for many miles shortly after they are finally wheeled out for the yard sales.

 



#6 64Paramount

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 01:53 PM

Most of my adult neighbors own bicycles and you can see them in their garages, but I've never seen any of them ride. Some of them have mentioned to me that they ride stationary bikes at their fitness clubs. Some of the younger children ride their bikes up and down the block.

 

I bet I could easily find over 50 bikes just in my neighborhood that have less than 200 miles on them, but are several years old.....

 

 

 


Sometimes you may have to look very close to see it, but a measure of grace exists within us all..

#7 BHOFM

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 02:27 PM

 

BHOFM AKA Brad I'm not surprised that you know where every dormant bike lies in your surrounding community. I am willing to bet that we will see a great many of them reconditioned and hitting the roads for many miles shortly after they are finally wheeled out for the yard sales.

For the most part, yard sale bikes are grossly over priced. I do better at the Salvation Army Thrift Store.

The is a house up the street, they have had the same bike in their yard sales for over ten years. It is a

no name bike, no labels at all, they claim It cost $1200 new, needs some adjustments and tires, they

want $750, firm. It has all Falcon equipment?? It is a full blown road bike.

 

Most of the ones I look at are junk or several hundred dollars. I looked at a Roadmaster, they were asking

$125. A Specialized, Expedition Ellette for $250, the chain and freewheel was solid rust, the chain humped

up when I tried to spin the wheel. It has a lot of other issues as well. Lots of Wally bikes, $75 and up.

The local pawn shop has a Trek like mine, they are asking $799. It is a later, aluminum framed version.

 

I rebuilt an old Ironman for my neighbor, he has never ridden it. That was almost a year ago.

 

I wish I knew that answers...


I am old, fat and ugly, but I have 20 million dollars so it don't matter!

#8 Bigbananabike

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 12:19 AM

The USA is not alone in this problem (for it is a problem).

I do a regular Saturday AM ride. I almost always ride my Singlespeed roadie.

A guy turned up (he’s been before apparently) on a Wilier Cento Uno with DI2. It was brand new and his first ride on it. He had to tell everyone that.

He had it insured for $21 000 (I looked them up when I got home and it most likely cost him $18 000 – our $ was worth about 75 cents of yours then).

 

Have we seen him again? No. What a waste.

There is almost ratio of the more money spent on a bike the less time it spends on the road – with MAMILS at least.

 

BBB



#9 sitzmark

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 04:32 AM



Originally Posted by davereo View Post

BTW I have a Min-pin "Rex" who is addicted to tennis balls he says hello to your parents.

 


I'm sure my parent's could shower Rex with old tennis balls to feed his need.  Growing up we had a bin full of practice balls  - must have been a few hundred that recycled through it at any given time - somewhat old in, dead and flat out.  Only problem is parents are in Seattle, so a long way to go for a fix.  :) 
 

 



#10 sitzmark

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 04:46 AM



 

Originally Posted by Bigbananabike View Post

The USA is not alone in this problem (for it is a problem).

 

Have we seen him again? No. What a waste.

 



Why a problem?  Presumably he didn't steal the bike, so a few people earned some money getting the bike in his hands and he's happy.  Sounds like a good deal to me. 

 

Maybe he decided to ride with another group.  ... maybe not... :)  

 

You have my interest peaked ... my last weekend group ride was 53 miles, 21mph average, and 3,200 feet of climbing.  I was spent at the end with gears.  No way I could hang on an SS - at least I don't think so.  How do you gear it?

 



#11 tonyzackery

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 08:36 AM



Originally Posted by sitzmark View Post


Why a problem?  Presumably he didn't steal the bike, so a few people earned some money getting the bike in his hands and he's happy.  Sounds like a good deal to me. 

 

 


I concur with this sentiment.  "Waste", in the context that it's used in this thread, is a relative term.  What may be a "waste" to you, may not be a "waste" for me.  Conclusions and judgements about others you know nothing about is reckless...but I guess it makes for good discussion...

 

But those gun-toting cyclists are still paranoid, insecure gun fanatics...

 


 

 


Do, or do not - there is no "try".

#12 IronGirl2011

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 09:11 AM

I was just having a discussion about this with my sister.  She does a bike tour or two per year so she tends to ride more early spring and once her tours are done that's it.  She bought a Cannondale Road Bike years ago, along with a Nishiki hybrid (not sure if she got them used or not).  I've been riding her hybrid and just recently purchased a Specialized TriCross Comp Double from Craigslist (that hybrid is just too heavy...)  Getting to the point - she was having trouble shifting gears and took her road bike in for service and they told her it was going to be $600 to fix.  She found a different bike she likes new for $900 and is contemplating.  It's kind of like when your car needs more work than it's worth, but her bikes dont sit.  I probably still spent way too much for my bike but I certainly wasn't going to shell out over a thousand...

 



#13 64Paramount

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 01:47 PM



Originally Posted by IronGirl2011 View Post

I was just having a discussion about this with my sister.  She does a bike tour or two per year so she tends to ride more early spring and once her tours are done that's it.  She bought a Cannondale Road Bike years ago, along with a Nishiki hybrid (not sure if she got them used or not).  I've been riding her hybrid and just recently purchased a Specialized TriCross Comp Double from Craigslist (that hybrid is just too heavy...)  Getting to the point - she was having trouble shifting gears and took her road bike in for service and they told her it was going to be $600 to fix.  She found a different bike she likes new for $900 and is contemplating.  It's kind of like when your car needs more work than it's worth, but her bikes dont sit.  I probably still spent way too much for my bike but I certainly wasn't going to shell out over a thousand...

 



IronGirl, you might want to suggest to your sister that she take her bike to a different bike shop and get a second opinion on that shifting problem. Maybe it really will cost $600 to fix, but that seems awfully expensive to me...

 

 

 


Sometimes you may have to look very close to see it, but a measure of grace exists within us all..

#14 Froze

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 06:11 PM



Originally Posted by davereo View Post

I often wonder what the percentage of bikes sold in the US get used regularly.  I am always amazed when I go to the LBS and see folks picking up new bikes.  I rarely run into them out riding on the roads and almost never see them on the single track trails in the area.

 

Anyone know of any statistical data?


No statistics, but rest assured that most that buy new bikes with all the good intentions in the world to ride do so for an average period of 3 months then stop...forever!  The same is true with gym memberships, that's why gyms push year contracts because they know the fool won't be there longer then 3 months and that's also how they can oversell the memberships because the gym will never get used to it's max capacity.

 

I like older bikes, in the last 8 months I've purchased 3 "used" bikes that were used no more then 250 miles before being stored, now I own them and their in new condition.  One is a 84 Fuji Club, the other is a 86 Nishiki Olympic (my take to camp road bike), and the last one is a 85 Schwinn Le Tour Luxe (my go to touring bike).  The Schwinn is a 10 out of 10, the Fuji is a 9 out of 10, and the Nishiki is an 8 due to some paint scuffs because the person didn't cover it when he stored it like the other two were.  The Schwinn has the most amount of miles at 250 and the Fuji has the least at about 5 miles!  As time goes by you will begin to find real nice carbon bikes that were rarely used going for cheap, but give it another 10 years before they start showing up in any kind of numbers.  My 3 bikes were all owned by guys now in their 60's cleaning out their "junk".   I've also last year purchased another used bike, though it was used for training rides it was in good shape and I deemed it a good buy and that was a 88 Miyata 712 for $50.  I also have bikes I purchased new.  But I ride a lot so these bikes do get used.  


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#15 doctorold

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 08:47 PM

I have posted numerous times to people looking for bikes to adopt off of Craigslist or any other classified listing.  I don't have any statistic except for the one a guy at an LBS told me.  He said that the average bike that is bought new never makes it to 300 miles with that owner.  I don't know how accurate that is but I would say it's probably true.  If you are looking to buy an orphaned bike you can get a good deal but you have to be very diligent in your search.  Not everyone lives in Denver where there must be 200-300 listings on craigslist a day, many of which are decent bikes.  But then you have to find the right size, etc. etc.  But I am always encouraging to find homes for unused bikes.  It only seems right.



#16 IronGirl2011

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 10:00 PM

@64Paramount - she took it somewhere different from where she usually takes it for her annual tune up... i suggested that she go back there for a second opinion as did her boyfriend!  The $600 they quoted her was to replace her broken derailleur, change her double chainring to a triple, swap her present gearing  (6 gears for maybe 9 or 10), a new chain, and new tires. There may have been some other stuff but after that part I just felt so bad for her.   Even so, it still sounded like a lot of money for that work.  I know very little about bikes and i'm hoping i didn't get COMPLETELY beat for mine but i intend on keeping it a very long time.  I'm getting new pedals for it in the morning (the ones it has on now are incompatible with my cleats and plus I want some pedals that I can ride in sneaks IF I feel like it) and if I can get into a groove shifting the gears I'm taking it out for my training ride on Sunday. 

 

@Doctorold there are a billion and six listings for bikes here on DC CL too!  (same for motorcycles and I bought one of those there as well!)



#17 Froze

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Posted 11 June 2011 - 12:59 PM

Whoa horsey, $600 is just a scam the LBS was trying to get out of her, they figured they were n't going to make any money selling her a new so lets just get enough part and labor money to make up the difference!

 

She does not have to convert the bike to STI modern shifting crap.  They sell brand new freewheels, and the best comes from IRD in 5, 6 and 7 speed flavors for about $45.  

 

No need to go to triple, more selling BS from the LBS...maybe that's what the BS in LBS stands for?  

 

Pedals is an easy swap if you want the modern cleat style, and they can be had for as little as $50 to $75 or more if you want nicer ones.

 

New chains for the older friction systems can easily be found for around $20.

 

The only problem you could have is the chainring gears being worn, but they last a long time so they may be ok if it hasn't been ridden all that much.  E-Bay may be the only place to find such gears for an older bike, but again patience pays off in finding exactly what you need.

 

New cables are also easy to find at any LBS and their cheap.

 

Clean and relube the derailleurs and brakes plus new brake pads.

 

Adjust the spokes and clean the rims and repack the bearings in the hubs and crank.

 

The whole thing done the way I mentioned shouldn't cost more then $200 to $250 not including pedals.  


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#18 IronGirl2011

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 01:34 PM

I am printing your post, Froze, and going to give it to my sister.  Mille Grazie and stuff!!!! (cheesey grin)

 

She actually bought a new bike today but I know she'll want to get her Cannondale in tip top shape again so I'll find a way to get her together....

 

(SN:  I gave her my new bike to finish day 2 of her tour (50 miles today) and she says my baby rides like a dream and did really well on climbs. (she's a far better rider than I am.... LOL))



#19 sunburned

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 05:53 AM

I try very hard not to become a victim of this as well.  I've had a mountain bike all my life, through college, and up until now that I'd always ride.  There are some decent trails near my house and I'd try to pull in friends to ride with, but it didn't happen often.  I figured maybe buying a new bike would motivate me to ride more so I scoured Craigslist for a nicer bike at a decent price.  Looking for one of these guys that bought something and never rode it.  Actually ended up buying a brand new bike from a shop, but it was a 2010 Stumpjumper Comp discounted at almost half price ($1k instead of $1800).  I just couldn't pass that up.  Since I bought it a few months ago, I've ridden it twice and it kills me to see it sit there in the garage.  I want to ride so bad, but can't motivate my friends to get out with me.  A buddy of mine bought a sweet Cannondale F2 last year and I think he's ridden it twice over almost 2 years.  So that makes me not feel so bad, but I want him to get out and ride with me.  Him having a kid didn't help that situation haha. 

 

Of course, I did the opposite with road biking.  Another friend rode a lot and conviced me to buy a bike.  Got an 5-6 year old Allez off CL for $450 and put a few hundred miles on it over a few months just to get used to road biking and see if I liked it.  Turned out I was riding quite a bit, so I decided to upgrade.  Again scoured CL, but ended up buying a 2010 model Cervelo S1 w/Ultegra from a LBS that they had at around $500 off normal price.  This is a purchase I can actually feel good about, because I've already put a few hundred miles on it in just over a month.  Definitely not going to let this purchase go to waste.  I've spent a small fortune getting together all the accessories and crap for road biking over the last few months, so I'm going to ride as much as I possibly can while the weather is nice.  Helps that it's getting me back into shape too, so that's definitely a motivator.

 

 



#20 Bigbananabike

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 12:19 PM



Originally Posted by sitzmark View Post



 



Why a problem?  Presumably he didn't steal the bike, so a few people earned some money getting the bike in his hands and he's happy.  Sounds like a good deal to me. 

 

Maybe he decided to ride with another group.  ... maybe not... :)  

 

You have my interest peaked ... my last weekend group ride was 53 miles, 21mph average, and 3,200 feet of climbing.  I was spent at the end with gears.  No way I could hang on an SS - at least I don't think so.  How do you gear it?

 


You do a heck of a lot more climbing than I do on our ride and also I do about 56kms you do 53 miles (a bit over 80kms). My SS is 39/15 = 70 inches. Big enough to keep up on the flats, some hills I get dropped going down (my rev range is from 31 - 171 !) and hard but ok on the hills we ride.

 

An $18k bike a waste - imho it is. Its built for a top rider not a plonker and if he only rides a few times its not doing it justice either.

If he's getting into it, training hard, getting better, sure that justifies having it imho ;-)

 

BBB
 

 






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