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  1. #76
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    I hate these kids today. With their dancing and their loud rock n roll. Also, get off my lawn.

  2. #77
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    Your points are more or less true..BUT...Bikes are toys.and i like playing with and buying toys.
    Doug

  3. #78
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    You might as well tell the bicycle industry to stop trying to make money. It's shorter and easier to read.

  4. #79
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    I started riding in 1992 on a Bridgestone MB4. Today, my primary bike is a 2011 Specialized Enduro. They weigh the same and in inflation adjusted dollars they cost the same but the Enduro is 10 times the bike because of all of that new-fangled, marketing driven technology that the OP can do without.

    I have a rigid single-speed for when I want to go retro (but it weighs 19 pounds) but I really like my hydraulic brakes, six inches of suspension, Hammerschmidt, dropper post, and the whole package that makes up today's super-bikes.

    Seems silly to complain about advances in what are essentially big, useless toys. Last time I checked there were thousands of different bikes and millions of combinations of components to choose from. Specialized, my favorite company, by themselves make bikes for every budget and with every level of technology.

    Seriously, they're just bikes. Buying one is not a huge decision like enlisting in the Marines or getting married. Heck, buying a new bike is fun. I like looking at different bikes and components. There are a lot of choices but isn't that part of the fun?

    Mountain biking is fun, right?
    Last edited by Ailuropoda; 07-21-2012 at 09:46 AM.

  5. #80
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    I feel that there's more color needed on this black and white picture you're trying to paint. Personally, I subscribed to a lot of their BS. and some of it certainly is just that. However, I wanted a comfortable bike. I find a lot of just that in my new bike versus the 90s Hardrock I started on, and then "my" first bike, a 2006 Hardrock, and even the 2008 norco fluid v4 I rode around for a test year. if what you ride is comfortable, but I feel that your message is very strident and stark in comparison to how it is. It's the same with any consumer market, you end up with a bunch of people buying the high end gear they cannot entirely utilize. But that is a lot of people to bash on, and bashing on all of them would ultimately make you a hypocrite in the eyes of many alike because I am certain that in some way you subscribe to a form of elitism, even if its just counter elite-cyclist culture ideals.

    By the way, is this Mark?

  6. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by net wurker View Post
    I'm not sure the bike industry will see your letter, here in passion. I think the bike industry hangs out in the all-mountain forum, and the dowhhill/freeride forum, the 29'r forum and sometimes the xc forum.
    Even if they do see it, they won't spend even 5 seconds reading it because of how ugly the formatting is and because of his poor grammar.

    Want to get somebody's attention in written form? Do a better job at writing it.

    That said, I get annoyed hearing about people satisfied with their old bikes. You're fast on your 20 year old rig and don't see any point in upgrading. That is really good for you. Clearly you are a special snowflake.

    But guess what, it's not your money being spent on this shiny new tech, so don't worry about it. For many, the technological and engineering aspect of mountain biking is part of what makes it so fun. It's a hobby, and we're supposed to splurge on our hobbies every now and then.

  7. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigbadwulff View Post
    Oh the "evil" corporate "greed". Let's not make money. Heaven forbid. That would be awful to sell things, create jobs, and create wealth. I shudder at the thought.
    Hey, look on the bright side - he'll never get employed with that attitude.
    He sounds like the kind of person who wants everything given to him.

  8. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ailuropoda View Post
    I started riding in 1992 on a Bridgestone MB4. Today, my primary bike is a 2011 Specialized Enduro. They weigh the same and in inflation adjusted dollars they cost the same but the Enduro is 10 times the bike because of all of that new-fangled, marketing driven technology that the OP can do without.

    I have a rigid single-speed for when I want to go retro (but it weighs 19 pounds) but I really like my hydraulic brakes, six inches of suspension, Hammerschmidt, dropper post, and the whole package that makes up today's super-bikes.

    Seems silly to complain about advances in what are essentially big, useless toys. Last time I checked there were thousands of different bikes and millions of combinations of components to choose from. Specialized, my favorite company, by themselves make bikes for every budget and with every level of technology.

    Seriously, they're just bikes. Buying one is not a huge decision like enlisting in the Marines or getting married. Heck, buying a new bike is fun. I like looking at different bikes and components. There are a lot of choices but isn't that part of the fun?

    Mountain biking is fun, right?
    Great post man.........(except for the liking Specialized part)!!!

  9. #84
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    I think what's getting missed in everyones need to dogpile on the OP is this.

    None of you have answered., near as I can tell, why it is that we as cyclists, desiring better stuff, need multiple, completely non intercompatible standards for things that can be bought from many different manufacturers.

    It's a given, that you can buy a headset from many makers. Ditto for cranks, and hubs.

    These components are all pretty basic, and at this point, pretty sussed out. Also, pretty well made, and durable, hence, they don't wear out too often. Gee, how do I get people to buy my stuff as they buy it once, and it lasts for years, because I'm good at what I do. I know, change standards! Why wait till they actually wear something out?

    Do you, as a rider, really notice a huge difference, going from say, an aluminum hardtail with external bearing BB (nice, old school threaded BB shell), 1 1/8 " head tube, and a 135 rear end, to a hardtail with PF30, tapered head tube (I know, I know, which tapered standard you ask. I don't care, choose the one that gives you wood) and a 142 rear end?

    Both bikes will have 80 mm forks.

    I challenge anyone here to really truly quantify how their experience is SOOOOOO much better on the "modern" bike.

    You can't.

    That, is what I think the issue is. Nothing wrong with actual improvement. Plenty wrong with totally incompatible standards that force consumers hands to purchase more components from an ever shrinking number of suppliers, who charge ever more for their goods because of their now captive market.

    Simple case in point. My fatbike. I have a Pugsley, with a 135 rear end. It works fine, but the chain is really close to the tire in granny and in certain situations it can catch and make the chain suck downward. The new rear 170mm standard was created to solve that issue, which it does well. Yes, new stuff, and standard, but it actually solves a problem. You have 135, 145 and 150 (and more too). Tell me how 142 is so much better.....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  10. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Tell me how 142 is so much better.....


    Clean easy to use (tooless in most cases) 12mm through axle with no need for a different hub width, most quality hubs offer conversion kits as well.
    If you don't understand how this is better than the flexy pos q/r system I really don't know what to say to you.

    I also would not consider an aluminum hardtail a modern bike, try a full suspension trailbike from ten years ago and compare it to what we have now. Without question there is a night and day difference.

  11. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post

    Do you, as a rider, really notice a huge difference, going from say, an aluminum hardtail with external bearing BB (nice, old school threaded BB shell), 1 1/8 " head tube, and a 135 rear end, to a hardtail with PF30, tapered head tube (I know, I know, which tapered standard you ask. I don't care, choose the one that gives you wood) and a 142 rear end?

    Both bikes will have 80 mm forks.

    I challenge anyone here to really truly quantify how their experience is SOOOOOO much better on the "modern" bike.

    You can't.

    Tell me how 142 is so much better.....
    The large tapered headtube and oversized bottom bracket of the theoretical frame provides more area to join the various frame members resulting in a firmer ride. The 142mm rear end is slotted like a traditional open drop-out for ease of use but uses a large 12mm axle - again, for added stiffness.

    These things are unequivocally PERFORMANCE enhancements, whether or not the provide a better experience is irrelevant.

    And this example on a aluminum hard-tail with an 80mm fork is a bit silly. It's like asking someone to justify a new Mac Book Pro when all they do is e-mail and surf the web. For the types of bikes I ride, many of the new standards and technological breakthroughs have been a godsend.
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  12. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post

    None of you have answered., near as I can tell, why it is that we as cyclists, desiring better stuff, need multiple, completely non intercompatible standards for things that can be bought from maut?
    The answer is that it doesn't matter. Buy the bike you want with the components you want an ignore everything else. I mean, realistically I don't really care about my bottom bracket. If it needs service I let my LBS handle it. I have six mountain bikes and I have no idea what kind of bottom bracket any of them have except I suspect my Stumpjumper Carbon Hardtail has press in bearings.

    If you do your own service all it means is that you have to own a couple more tools.

  13. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by rev106 View Post
    Every time I see some poor 5.5” guy on a 29er, I just feel like the bike industry is made up of carneys and we are it’s willing dupes.
    Every time I see a 6'4"+ guy towering over 26er like a circus bear on toy bike I can't help but think how ridiculous it was that 26" wheels were the ONLY standard for mountain bikes for so many years. We all have different body types and riding styles and the one-size-fits-all mentality of the early days of mountain biking is, thank Odin, long gone. I love my 29er, it makes me feel like a kid again because it just feels right. My 15 year old Ti Kona King Kahuna sure looks pretty propped up on a stand in my man cave, but I will never choose to ride it over my new Tallboy LTc. Bike industry, if you actually are listening, bring on the changing standards and innovations, I think most of us here are grateful they have finally arrived.
    "He seems quite arrogant and ignores quite some valid points." -Millfox
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  14. #89
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    On behalf of the entire bicycle manufacturing industry, I will respond to your open letter.
    Thanks.

    We did not want to innovate so much, despite what some have said about us.
    We would rather keep selling the same designs for years, and simply search for lower cost labor to manufacture and assemble the product.

    Thanks again,

    The Bicycle Industry

  15. #90
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    well, my friend who owns a bike shop can probably relate somewhat, since 29er became popular, they've had trouble selling some of their great 26ers. In our area, 26er is good, but thing is, there are people who've NEVER ridden a 29er, come in and claim they need one. He trys to say "here, we have some great 26er trail bikes as well....."
    "NO it has to be a 29er".
    "have you tried one yet? do you know what style you prefer? do you want to test ride both?"
    "NO i have never ridden a 29er, but thats what i need".

    okay.....

    by all means, ride what you like, but popularity sometimes has people grabbing on before they know what they even want in a bike.
    fap

  16. #91
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    The points made are relevant, yes.

    However, you're still missing the point. Multiple standards help no one.

    142, sure, it's cute. So is 150, and it already exists, and you're already buying a new bike anyway, which is why this is even relevant. Nobody is retrofitting a 135 frame to a 142 hub. Hence, new bike, just buy a 150, cause hey, it's 8 mm wider, so thus, by your own admission, stiffer. Why limit your stiffness? I love the 150 mm spacing on my Lenz Lunchbox, no issues, stiff, never find myself going, "man, wish this was 8 mm narrower".

    I'm sure smart folks could come up with adapters for the extra 4 mm per side, just like the 3.5 for the 142. It's just a pointless extra size in a field awash with sizes already.

    No issues with TA QR's, like 'em. Did we really need 15 AND 20 in front? No, but at least no one has come out with a 17.5 just to be different, yet...

    I'm sure Specialized and Trek are very happy selling everyone on another new standard though.

    Taper HT's, we had 1 Point Five already, so there's your wider weld point/stiffener, which I do agree adds chassis stiffness.

    Adding tapered simply muddies the water and allows the rider to keep their stem (phew, I was stressed about that!)

    Tapered, offers multiple standards. Just ordered a taper headset for an inbound frame, only to discover, what was ordered for the lower cup, wasn't correct, awesome.

    My fault for not doing in depth homework, yes. Necessary? No. Tapered should be just that, tapered.

    Order a 1 1/8" threadless headset, no surprises. No multiple standards within the "standard"....

    BB's, same thing, yes, bigger for stiffer, got it. So we've had BB30 for years via Cannondale. Now toss in PF30, BBRight, BB90, and you have a soup full of standards that would make a builder cry.

    I'm all for innovation. I'm all for improvement. All for stiffer frames on FS bikes. I'm happily a Luddite about some stuff, but embrace new too.

    How does having multiple contact angles and two diameters of direct fit headset bearings help anyone, other than make it impossible easily to buy replacement bearings for a customers headset? OEM stuff is a mix mash, and getting to the bottom of what you have is just more hassle for no valid improvement. 36x36, 36x45, 45x45 yada yada yada...


    Not standing on a soap box saying steel and square taper is all we need, not at all. But having so many standards apply to the same parts, from the same year does nothing to improve anything, just makes mechanics lives more annoying, and doesn't allow you to buy a bike and plug in whatever you like.

    Isis BB's sucked, but were a great example of the kind of thinking I'd like to see. One standard that all crank and BB makers who chose to, could use, free.

    I could go on, but you guys would obviously rather have a million different standards, just because you can....

    Flame away.
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  17. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Multiple standards help no one.
    That's a pretty broad statement. There are cases where multiple standards certainly makes sense, wheel size for instance, and other cases where a good argument could be made against them, headset or bottom brackets perhaps being good examples. Arbitrary and numerous standards are certainly not a good idea, and are perhaps what some here are reacting to, but to go to the other extreme and say we should have only one standard in all cases seems silly to me.

    Take a more mature industry that relies on standards, residential construction. The unit of stick frame construction, the wall stud and floor joist, comes in various sizes: 2x4, 2x6, 2x8, 2x10, 2x12, each with their own accompanying hardware standards. Without these multiple standards, you would not able to build walls and floors with different structural, aesthetic, insulation, and sound proofing requirements.

    The mountain bike industry is still young and in flux, perhaps one day it will mature like the construction industry and we can settle on groups of standards that make sense, until then just be thankful you have some choice.
    "He seems quite arrogant and ignores quite some valid points." -Millfox
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  18. #93
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    OP, you're never forced to buy anything. Be glad MTB is a progressive sport....and not one mired in abject obsolescence. Mind you, I don't even ride with the latest and greatest...even though I can well afford it. But, since I'll never see myself racing - I'm perfectly happy with my two-year-old FS 26er with eight year-old parts. Why? Because the parts I do have are durable. I will replace them as they break....not with the same, but with 2012+ equivalents.

    Your letter will only fall upon deaf ears and eyes. Having the upper edge simply does not mean you need to have the latest 29er with 2x10 componentry....but with what you are safely having enough fun on.
    "The mind will quit....well before the body does"

  19. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by shredjunkie View Post
    That's a pretty broad statement.
    Taken out of context, you are correct.

    Multiple BB or HS standards for bicycles that essentially do the same thing (IE: DH, XC, AM etc) is pointless.

    XC bikes, so many standards, so little improvement over one another "in class".

    Ditto for the other groups/styles.

    Why do I feel like I'm paddling upstream here?

    If you think it's great that you can't buy an XTR crank and mount it on any XC chassis you wish, cool, be stuck with whatever carbon crap said maker made an exclusive deal with the crank manufacturer on.

    Soon, we'll have multiple derailleur mount options for RD's, sweet!

    Worth noting, in case it wasn't apparent, I'm coming at this from a bike shop perspective too.

    It was bad enough when FD's came in three clamp diameters, two pulls, and two "swings". I was very happy when they figured out a multi pull system, and included shims for the other sizes. Thank you! I can stock two or three MTB FD's and be covered.

    Sadly, now we have two versions of Direct mount to contend with, one simply wasn't sufficient.....

    Hey, I even understand direct mount, I do!

    That said, welcome to the hell that is trying to stock everything for everyone, and everything.

    Or, be accused of being some lame shop that "doesn't stock anything I need"......


    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  20. #95
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    Well, sure... and as a software engineer who works in the Internet industry, my life would sure be easier if everything was written in one language and if all browsers conformed to the exact same standard. Unfortunately that would stifle innovation and we'd all still be browsing with Netscape Navigator and Yahoo lists would still be the best way to track down information. Instead I'm required to know more than a half dozen languages and achieving compatibility across multiple browsers is a major time suck... but that's just the all part of the job description.
    "He seems quite arrogant and ignores quite some valid points." -Millfox
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  21. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    I think what's getting missed in everyones need to dogpile on the OP is this.

    None of you have answered., near as I can tell, why it is that we as cyclists, desiring better stuff, need multiple, completely non intercompatible standards for things that can be bought from many different manufacturers.

    It's a given, that you can buy a headset from many makers. Ditto for cranks, and hubs.

    These components are all pretty basic, and at this point, pretty sussed out. Also, pretty well made, and durable, hence, they don't wear out too often. Gee, how do I get people to buy my stuff as they buy it once, and it lasts for years, because I'm good at what I do. I know, change standards! Why wait till they actually wear something out?

    Do you, as a rider, really notice a huge difference, going from say, an aluminum hardtail with external bearing BB (nice, old school threaded BB shell), 1 1/8 " head tube, and a 135 rear end, to a hardtail with PF30, tapered head tube (I know, I know, which tapered standard you ask. I don't care, choose the one that gives you wood) and a 142 rear end?

    Both bikes will have 80 mm forks.

    I challenge anyone here to really truly quantify how their experience is SOOOOOO much better on the "modern" bike.

    You can't.

    That, is what I think the issue is. Nothing wrong with actual improvement. Plenty wrong with totally incompatible standards that force consumers hands to purchase more components from an ever shrinking number of suppliers, who charge ever more for their goods because of their now captive market.

    Simple case in point. My fatbike. I have a Pugsley, with a 135 rear end. It works fine, but the chain is really close to the tire in granny and in certain situations it can catch and make the chain suck downward. The new rear 170mm standard was created to solve that issue, which it does well. Yes, new stuff, and standard, but it actually solves a problem. You have 135, 145 and 150 (and more too). Tell me how 142 is so much better.....
    Having multiple standards is the only way that things improve. If not for multiple standards, nothing would have changed since the first appearance of mtb's:

    -If there were never multiple headset standards, we would still be using 1" threaded.
    -If there were never multiple brake standards, we would all be using cantilevers (or maybe u-brakes)
    -If there were never multiple shifter / RD / Cassette standards, we would all be running 5 speed.
    -If there were never multiple bb standards, we would all be running Square taper.

    And for all your talk about this all being a way to squeeze more money out of consumers, the bottom line is that in the end you get a lot more for your money now than you did 20 years ago.


    Regarding 142mm:

    142 is better because it is a through axle that threads into the frame. It is simply a better way to attach the wheel to the frame than is possible with 135. I have converted 135 frames in the past from QR to through bolt axles, and on a flexy frame it made a HUGE difference. Unfortunately it is a bit awkward to use a through bolt on a vertical dropout. A system like 142 gives the advantage of a through axle but makes it a lot easier to remove and replace the wheel. So there you go.

    And many rear hubs are convertible from 135 to 142.

    I don't get what your problem with it is. It has the exact same chain-line and everything as 135, it is not a big compatibility issue. If you think this was just some money making scheme, keep in mind that the frame makers are not the ones selling the new hubs. If anything, a manufacturer is taking a risk with a new standard.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

  22. #97
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    I'll side with Mendon, since he's essentially making the same point I was earlier. Some things are BS and have nothing to do with innovation and everything to do with making stuff incompatible and in the end more profitable for the industry.

    I'm pretty sure no one here will be able to argue how changing chainring BCD and # of arms offers any sort of improvement at all, simply because there is no benefit.

    Standard 110/74 5 bolt rings last longer than 94/58 BCD 5 bolt, and both are far stronger than 104 BCD 4 bolt cranks. I've never heard of people bending 5 bolt rings, unlike 4 bolt models.

    Can someone tell me how this is an improvement please?

    Here's several years of 4 arm XTR, with 4 different BCD sizes; how are any improved over the others? Do tell.....

    146 BCD Shimano XTR M960 Hollowtech 4-arm outer
    112 BCD Shimano XTR M950, M952 4-arm middle/outer
    104 BCD Shimano XTR M960, 4-arm outer
    102 BCD Shimano 2003 XTR 4-arm middle

    (courtesy of Sheldon Brown, RIP)
    Last edited by dru; 07-22-2012 at 07:58 PM.
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  23. #98
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    Wow, I'm surprised how many people insulted the OP. Surely everyone is entitled to his/her opinion without fear of ridicule? But it's easy to go after someone on the internet, isn't it?

    I'm just getting back into mtb (as in, actually buying stuff) for the first time since 1995. I have to say, bikes have come a long way. The technology on them is fantastic. I love my new 29er with hydro brakes and RockShox. That said, there are a TON of choices out there and I see the OP's point. I shopped for a new bike for 2 weeks and was no closer to deciding at the end than I was at the beginning. It's way too easy to spend a ton of money on a bike that might not necessarily be THAT much better.

    At my local LBS, I rode a $650 bike, a $750 bike, a $960 bike, and a $1400 bike. You know what, I really couldn't tell much difference just riding around the parking lot and hopping the curb over and over. It can all be pretty overwhelming, which is, I think, the OP's point. That said, I think having too many options is a great problem to have. Just get out there and have fun with your bike!

  24. #99
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    A few people mentioned that "bikes are toys and are meant to splurge out on from time to time" or something to that effect. That comment speaks volumes about some cyclists disposable income. I'm sure many of us struggle to replace an inner tube when it's needed, let alone bigger purchases or even whole bikes.
    My point is that I get a feeling that it's those with cash to burn who have little problem with new standards as they can easily afford, if not enjoy and want, to change parts/frame/complete bikes.
    In my case I have the previous generation Niner S.I.R.9 and I'm really glad I have that model and not the new one as I'm not sure I'd be able to use an IGH with the new rear end. Nor would I be able to pull my BOB trailer with the new one.

    Personally, I'm all for innovation (another 29er fanboy here). On the other hand I'm all for maximum compatibility between parts/frames. I guess the difficulty is achieving a reasonable balance.

  25. #100
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    I am sympathetic to MendonCycleSmith's plight from the perspective of a shop owner trying to keep stock of parts and tooling to deal with such a wide spectrum of standards. I believe that as much of a source of frustration this can be for the end user it is much more burdensome for a shop to try and keep that much money on the shelf.

    But I do agree that innovation comes at the cost of multiple standards and that some, not all, but many of these innovations are worthy pursuits. I would hope this is a transitionary period and that at some point many of these innovations would go by the way side, but from what I've witnessed over the years I believe the market will become proliferated with proprietary features to accommodate things such as gear boxes or MTB transmissions for example.

    I think this is good for the consumer, but a hardship for the local shops. I honestly cannot think of anything man has devised that conforms to a universal standard, we can't even agree on a standard unit of measure. The reality is that the world of bicycles is no different than anything else in regard to a wide array of standards.

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