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  1. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    "Average"
    "Average" is the point of reference that J.B. mentioned. If you cherry pick only certain segments, then it's a different discussion than what he said and I responded to originally.

    To your point though, I would be curious as to how much of the population resides within the top/bottom 10% now vs 40 years ago. (I'm sure I could dig it up, but don't have the time right at the moment - maybe you've got figures more handy?)
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  2. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cornfield View Post
    Might as well ask: Has the price of food and drink made eating less interesting for you?


    Actually, I don't eat out often a restaurants. I feel like it's a waste of money and I find quality food lacking as my family had been in the restaurant business for over 30 years. I do on occasion take my family out to eat but usually to a quality casual place where I know I can get a good meal without spending a lot of money. I'm not into the whole dining for the experience thing and don't drink or splurge when I do go out. Again, I can afford to, but I don't. But unlike bike parts you can on occasions find good values. Discovering those special places is always a treat.
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  3. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeboh View Post
    OP, get last years model on closeout, used or demo, lots of good value there. Still riding my 2013 29er enduro, my 2015 trek Farley and host of other older bikes. Just built up a Krampus, 2x11 drivetrain, boost, rigid and 40 mm rims. Great ride. Built it up my self except for the bb and headset install. Do what you like, you have $$? But don't want to spend? Hmmm.
    I could get whatever piques my interest, but I'm not biting because I don't see the value in anything else at this point. I used to swap bikes and parts all the time. I build my bike from scratch, on occasion I'll buy a new bike if I see something I like. But upgrading to booste or eagle is not on the radar due to cost and the negligible benefit. As I said before I used to experiment with my bikes quite often, swapping out forks, converting my hard tails to single speed, swapping out tires and rims with regularity. But now a days if I want to play i'm looking at $2000 carbon wheels, $800 drive trains, $3000 frames. I'll just stick with what I have.
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  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lemonaid View Post
    But now a days if I want to play i'm looking at $2000 carbon wheels, $800 drive trains, $3000 frames.
    Why do you think you have to spend that sort of money?
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  5. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    "Average" is the point of reference that J.B. mentioned. If you cherry pick only certain segments, then it's a different discussion than what he said and I responded to originally.

    To your point though, I would be curious as to how much of the population resides within the top/bottom 10% now vs 40 years ago. (I'm sure I could dig it up, but don't have the time right at the moment - maybe you've got figures more handy?)
    No, I just referenced your link.

    More just pointing out that the "Lies, damned lies, and statistics" hasn't changed. Easy to find the answers we want because it is easy to interpret the data the way we want. Like how buying power is the same, on average. But the wealthiest are wealthier, which skews the numbers. Or how unemployment is down, but not full employment. More people are either out of the job market or working lower paying jobs to get by. But unemployment numbers look good!

  6. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Why do you think you have to spend that sort of money?
    This. Just because you can, doesn't mean you have to. You don't see sports car enthusiasts complaining because now they have to buy a million dollar car just to have a go.

  7. #107
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    We have a kid that shows up for our weekly evening rides with his dad's old Cannondale Super V or whatever it's called. He goes on and on about needing some nine thousand dollar bike. We all try to explain to him a 1500 dollar plus hardtail or really ANYTHING with modern geometry, disc brakes and bigger than 26" wheels will bring him up to speed.
    Crap, he does just fine on the Cannondale. We finally all gave up trying to talk sense to him.
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  8. #108
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    Here is some pricing on the Specialized Stumpjumper. It's been a popular mode from a large non-boutique manufacturer for a long time.


    Here is a lower end bike.
    2001 Specialized Stumpjumper FSC XC Comp
    MSRP: $2,170
    MSRP in 2019 Dollars: $3,132

    2019 Specialized Stumpjumper ST Comp Alloy 29
    MSRP: $3,020

    So pretty similar.




    How about their high end model.
    2001 Specialized Stumpjumper S-Works FSR XC
    MSRP: $3,360
    MSRP in 2019 Dollars: $4,851

    2019 Specialized Stumpjumper ST 29
    MSRP: $9,520

    Definitely not similar.



    How about something in the middle.

    2001 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR XC Pro
    MSRP: $2,599
    MSRP in 2019 Dollars: $3,752

    2019 Specialized Stumpjumper Pro 29
    MSRP: $6,300.

    Still much higher.





    My completely unscientific opinion based on a sample size of one says that the lower end bikes are about the same, but the top end models are much more expensive. If I were to guess as to why, it was the introduction of carbon fiber. It is much more expensive than AL which created a much wider price range between the lower end AL models and the top end carbon models.

  9. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Howard View Post
    This. Just because you can, doesn't mean you have to. You don't see sports car enthusiasts complaining because now they have to buy a million dollar car just to have a go.
    Precisely the point of this thread.

  10. #110
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    No question it's more expensive at the mid and high end than it was 10 years ago.

    But if you can't have fun riding trails on a beat up old hard tail you picked up on craigslist for $200, maybe you need to rethink why you ride.

    If gear is really your thing, try the used market. I just picked up a sweet Kona Hei Hei for $325. Now, it's a 2012 model. But you know what? I can still enjoy riding it even though it doesn't have the most modern geo. Hell I sometimes still ride my 1997 stumpjumper for kicks. And like the stumpy, I'll probably enjoy locating and installing some upgrades for the Kona on the used market, too.

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  11. #111
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    Actually, the "used market" was what gave me one of my moments of clarity.

    My income is higher and my debt is lower than at any point in my life to date, but for the first time I was buying used bike parts, something I'd never dared to do before.

    Or maybe I really have just gotten that cheap.

    My newest mountain bike is now more than 9 years old. Previous record was 7.
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  12. #112
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    Hey, nothing wrong with being cheap. There are lots of people that buy things new and then sell them after a year. I got my current fork that way at a significant savings.

    My last bike I kept for 10 years. I am amused by people who always need the latest and greatest. Have the trails really changed that much? On the other hand, I recently got a 2017 enduro bike and I really like it, so I can appreciate the advances and refinements in recent tech. It's just a question of what it's worth to you I guess.

    But if you're losing passion for MTBing over pricing, I'd say try something different. As in, find a new place to ride and explore. When I went through a mtb funk a few years ago, I realized it was because I was mostly riding the same routes in the same places over and over. When I started exploring new areas, it sucked me right back in, and I'm more passionate about it than ever now.

  13. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    That may be true but it's a fact that the majority of Americans are making a lot less money relative to what they were earning 40 years ago.
    This is the wrong way of interpreting the data. The people who were part of the work force 40 years ago are in their prime income earning years, and the vast majority of them are making MUCH more money than they were 40 years ago.

    The problem with looking at income distribution is that who makes up the various segments of the income distribution changes over time. People are moving up and down the income distribution all the time as they go to school, have children, are between jobs, or make other life decisions that impact their position.

    There are real gains in income at almost every level across the economy. They are not shared equally but most of the income distribution has not slipped backwards.

    If the cost of bikes and parts is up more in real terms than incomes are over that time, that is somewhat concerning. But household necessities are cheaper than ever. For example, in the last 90 years, food spending as a proportion of household income is way down. That was a choice consumers made. As our real incomes rose, we could have continued to spend 1/3 of our income on food, but with cheaper food, consumers opted to route that income to other things. Just think back to your childhood. How many televisions were in your house? How big were they? I remember what a big deal it was to have a second or third television in the house 25 years ago; now everyone acts like I'm some kind of recluse because I don't have more than one. What I'm saying regarding household goods and spending on them is that real income is not the only measure of what we have available for recreational products like bicycles.

    Getting back to the original point, I went to a demo event a few weekends ago and rode some super fancy bikes that cost 2-3x what any of my bikes cost. I brought my bike with me so I could experience it on the same trails. I discovered after that weekend that I really love my personal bikes. All that fancy equipment is cool and fun to play with, but it's hard to argue with the comfort of what is mine and already paid for. I've never test driven a new car and felt the same way, but I certainly didn't ever get to the end of the month and wish for a big car payment, either.

  14. #114
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    Although my MTB is old, I bought new a carbon "gravel" road bike with thru-axles, hydraulic brakes, and Di2.

    The tangible performance gains over my previous 12-year old, Al, 25,000 km, cross bike with banged-up ultegra?

    Ummm.... Subtle, to put it politely.

    Thus, my motivation to replace my mountain bike dropped from minimal to none.
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  15. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
    Actually, the "used market" was what gave me one of my moments of clarity.

    My income is higher and my debt is lower than at any point in my life to date, but for the first time I was buying used bike parts, something I'd never dared to do before.

    Or maybe I really have just gotten that cheap.

    My newest mountain bike is now more than 9 years old. Previous record was 7.
    I've never been shy to buy used. In fact most of my "new" bike builds are with new-used parts I find on various sources which usually let me build a bike for a fraction of what it would have cost me to buy a complete bike. Buying used is definitely a wise choice when considering how much wear and tear bikes take after several years of riding. They are much like cars in that respect, they lose value rapidly.
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  16. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
    Although my MTB is old, I bought new a carbon "gravel" road bike with thru-axles, hydraulic brakes, and Di2.

    The tangible performance gains over my previous 12-year old, Al, 25,000 km, cross bike with banged-up ultegra?

    Ummm.... Subtle, to put it politely.

    Thus, my motivation to replace my mountain bike dropped from minimal to none.
    Apples to oranges. Road bike geometry and components have largely been sorted for decades at this point, whereas mountain bikes are still moving pretty quickly. Suspension technology alone has jumped leaps and bounds in the last few years.

    That said, I wouldn't be concerned with having the latest and greatest. A couple or even a few years old is no big deal, but if you're talking 5 plus years old then the difference will NOT be subtle.

  17. #117
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpdemello View Post
    But if you can't have fun riding trails on a beat up old hard tail you picked up on craigslist for $200, maybe you need to rethink why you ride.
    I don't know too many people here that would enjoy a long ride on chunky terrain on a $200 craigslist bike. As idealistic as is sounds that just isn't the case. Having the right gear can make riding way more fun.

    I just don't see me doing this on a $200 craigslist bike.
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  18. #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lemonaid View Post
    I don't know too many people here that would enjoy a long ride on chunky terrain on a $200 craigslist bike. As idealistic as is sounds that just isn't the case. Having the right gear can make riding way more fun.

    I just don't see me doing this on a $200 craigslist bike.
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  19. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpdemello View Post
    No question it's more expensive at the mid and high end than it was 10 years ago.
    Circa 1997, I built up a nice hardtail with an MSRP value of over $6k.
    Circa 2001, my DH bike was also well over $6k.

    I could've easily spent more.

    2008 or so, my frame/fork combo alone ran well over $3k.

    Difference today isn't that bikes are all that much more expensive, just that everyone and their mother seems convinced that they have to spend like crazy or they can't ride at all.
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  20. #120
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    I'm sure if you wanted to you could spend $50k on a mountain bike. But we're talking in generalities. See the post by offroadcampr above. I think his analysis is spot on and fits with my general impression.

  21. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDwayyo View Post
    Apples to oranges. Road bike geometry and components have largely been sorted for decades at this point,.
    I have to beg to differ on this point. Disc brakes, thru-axles, aero frames, wide tires, tubeless, and electric shifting are giving roadies a borderline existential crisis.

    To be clear, I shouldn't have said the difference was subtle.

    I should have said the improvement in my ride experience was subtle. I mean, yeah, I like the disc brakes in the rain, but I've had them on the mountain bike for 20 years....

    And the geometry on my gravel bike is a long ways off my old road race and CX bikes. And again, IMO, not in a good way, although I guess someone must like it.

    I'll do some more test rides soon maybe. I've put 400 km on a carbon 29er and felt no faster whatsoever, but there have been more changes since then.
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  22. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpdemello View Post
    I'm sure if you wanted to you could spend $50k on a mountain bike. But we're talking in generalities. See the post by offroadcampr above. I think his analysis is spot on and fits with my general impression.
    I think there's a bit of a flaw in choosing to stick only within the 'Stumpjumper' model line; it's place in the line-up has changed (and expanded) over time. If you look at the overall model selection, you can even find that the highest end bikes in some cases have actually gotten cheaper over time, even without accounting for change in buying power.

    As you say, we've almost always been able to spend crazy money for a top end bike, there just happen to be more choices at the higher price points now.
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  23. #123
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    My approach to MTBing still borders on "Amish". I have never really been into suspension, carbon fiber, or the latest gadget/trend. My bike is 6 yrs. old - and only because it broke 6 years ago. If it hadn't broken, it would be 8 yrs. old.

    But let's say I replaced my current level rigid build with a same-level (i.e. not carbon fiber) full suspension build. The cost would be nearing $5K (new wheels alone would go $1K easy - fork? another $800?, coils, etc.). I just would not spend that much for a bicycle. Motorcycle? Yes.
    As it is, the original $450 wheels have been rebuilt once - putting the total cost to more like $750. That feels like a good ROI on 12 year old parts (hubs). Would the $5K bike last that long? No chance. Could I get 6 yrs. out of it? That would push the cost well past $5K.
    But as long as someone is willing to pay "whatever", then that's what the price will be. The demand is just too high.

    Do I want a new bike? No. I'm actually looking specifically for a 2017. But if I never find one, my current ride is pretty awesome.
    At the lower end - fatbike land for me - I got the newest version of my 4 year old fatbike for the same price I paid in 2014. Granted, I found a deal (that's why I got it!). I swapped what I liked from the old one, and built 2 nice fatbikes, and should be able to get 60% back on the latest one when I sell the old one.

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  24. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
    I have to beg to differ on this point. Disc brakes, thru-axles, aero frames, wide tires, tubeless, and electric shifting are giving roadies a borderline existential crisis.
    Sure, but how much do those actually impact the feel of the ride? I'd argue all of those are refinements to an already perfected design (not in the sense that it's perfect, but in the sense that the industry isn't making major changes anymore because it works), not the continuing evolution of the design.

    Mountain bikes feel very different today than just five years ago, for a lot of reasons.

    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
    And the geometry on my gravel bike is a long ways off my old road race and CX bikes. And again, IMO, not in a good way, although I guess someone must like it.
    This is probably a big difference given that it's a gravel bike and you're comparing it to road and CX bikes... But that's just another apples to oranges.

    My point isn't to disagree with anything you're saying other than that your experience on the gravel/CX/road side of things should inform your opinion on mountain bikes. It shouldn't.

    Road bike sales have been stagnating for a decade largely because there just isn't much reason to upgrade these days. If you have a road bike you like then chances are a new one isn't going to be a major improvement. Meanwhile, mountain bike sales seem to grow every year... It's in part because there IS a reason to sell your three year old bike and get a new one - you'll actually feel the changes.

    Suspension is probably the biggest one. Look at things like Trek ditching the full floater on their bikes; they expressly say that shock designs have improved enough to make full floater no longer needed. Same with long travel bikes becoming so popular for trail riding; improved suspension technology has made that possible. If you're riding 5+ year old suspension and telling yourself the difference to a new bike would be subtle you're fooling yourself. (But ignorance is bliss if you don't want to spend the money and I totally get that.)

  25. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMN View Post
    Yep. That is the one that has gotten out of control. Even the "cheap" cassettes are insanely expensive.

    I am hoping that when Shimano comes out with 12-speed XT/SLX we will start to see reasonable pricing.
    Yeah SRAM X-dome cassettes are super expensive, but having handled these I can see where the money it going. The ones machined and not pinned are works of art. Light and strong. I love how the attach to next cog to save the weight of support. Really fantastic. Then a see the Shimano ones with a tradtional style and see how heavy they are and cringe. Back when the biggest cog was a 28 or at most 34 and had or 8 or 9 of them you did not need fancy design and manufacturing to make the light and strong. However when you go up in size and cogs you have to do something. SRAM did and they have lighter cassettes. Shimano did not and the are so heavy. When you really get down to why 1x systems work it because of the X-dome cassette and XD driver. The ability to have 42t cog with a 10t cog on light cassette (albeit expensive) meant it could be run on high end bikes and could be the halo that everyone wanted to do. Chain retention is important too, but really it is wide range light cassette that every one has been looking to copy. 12spd is not the jump that 11speed were because 1x10 were really limited on range. With 11spd and 10-42 cassette range was nearly there and made 95% practical to not have another chaining. Of course 50t 12spd are more like 100% practical, but weight starts creaping up again.


    Of course 3x9 or 1x12 does not really change performance much. What changes is feel and how you ride your bike. A well tuned and properly used 3x9 (or even 3x8) can still be very effective. I do have to say now what 4-5 years later Mfg are starting to use the space offered by a front derailuer less drivetrain to provide geometry and suspension designs with less compromises. So performance can improve.


    Now if you don't want to spend money on the latest and greatest you don't need to. If you have 10 year old bike it won't ride worse today than back then (wear excepted). It is still the same bike and you can still have the same fun as before. Just don't lust after the new shiny objects and you will be fine.
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  26. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Now if you don't want to spend money on the latest and greatest you don't need to. If you have 10 year old bike it won't ride worse today than back then (wear excepted). It is still the same bike and you can still have the same fun as before.
    This is a great way to say it and at the heart of this discussion I believe. People talk as though new bikes improving means old bikes are getting worse. Of course that's not true. If you love your bike then a new bike coming out shouldn't have any impact on that, but that doesn't mean the new bike wouldn't be an improvement either.

  27. #127
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDwayyo View Post
    Sure, but how much do those actually impact the feel of the ride? I'd argue all of those are refinements to an already perfected design (not in the sense that it's perfect, but in the sense that the industry isn't making major changes anymore because it works), not the continuing evolution of the design.........

    Road bike sales have been stagnating for a decade largely because there just isn't much reason to upgrade these days. If you have a road bike you like then chances are a new one isn't going to be a major improvement.


    I don't think that's true at all. Disc brakes, better, more aero frames, better gearing and shifting, better wheels, wider rims, etc. I'd love a new road bike but will have to wait awhile for it.
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  28. #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDwayyo View Post
    Apples to oranges. Road bike geometry and components have largely been sorted for decades at this point, whereas mountain bikes are still moving pretty quickly. Suspension technology alone has jumped leaps and bounds in the last few years.

    That said, I wouldn't be concerned with having the latest and greatest. A couple or even a few years old is no big deal, but if you're talking 5 plus years old then the difference will NOT be subtle.
    Last year a moved from a 2001 Trek 5200 Road bike to a 2017 Specialized Venge Road bike

    Back in 2001 the 5200 was 2nd from top of line (5900 was top). Same frame geo was race in Tour de France. In 2017 the Venge I bought used the same frame as was race in in Tour as well. Both bikes had ultegra groupsets.
    The biggest difference was disc brakes on the venge and "aero" design. 2lbs less weight with Venge and carbon mid depth wheels. The Venge is faster, but only slightly. It so much cooler and frame wise fits me better, but that is size issue not bike geometry issue. I bought the venge because I wanted something newer. The 5200 was worn and I felt 1 size too small. I love the Venge, but I can't say it has made me a much faster rider. Yes I can see a bit more speed in some situations, but it very minimal. So minimal it requires stop watch or speed trace to see. They really ride the same, but I feel special on the venge, but felt old on the 5200. I did buy the Venge used and not in S-works trim to save some money, but it was 11x the value of 5200, but not 11x as fast. If I could not afford it would not have gotten it, but I could and it brings enjoyment. That is enough.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Last year a moved from a 2001 Trek 5200 Road bike to a 2017 Specialized Venge Road bike

    Back in 2001 the 5200 was 2nd from top of line (5900 was top). Same frame geo was race in Tour de France. In 2017 the Venge I bought used the same frame as was race in in Tour as well. Both bikes had ultegra groupsets.
    The biggest difference was disc brakes on the venge and "aero" design. 2lbs less weight with Venge and carbon mid depth wheels. The Venge is faster, but only slightly. It so much cooler and frame wise fits me better, but that is size issue not bike geometry issue. I bought the venge because I wanted something newer. The 5200 was worn and I felt 1 size too small. I love the Venge, but I can't say it has made me a much faster rider. Yes I can see a bit more speed in some situations, but it very minimal. So minimal it requires stop watch or speed trace to see. They really ride the same, but I feel special on the venge, but felt old on the 5200. I did buy the Venge used and not in S-works trim to save some money, but it was 11x the value of 5200, but not 11x as fast. If I could not afford it would not have gotten it, but I could and it brings enjoyment. That is enough.

    I think how minimal the difference are depends on what you're doing with it. If you're racing it or trying to hang with the A group on local rides then all the things you mentioned can add up to a measurable difference that matters, for sure they'll save you a few watts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I think how minimal the difference are depends on what you're doing with it. If you're racing it or trying to hang with the A group on local rides then all the things you mentioned can add up to a measurable difference that matters, for sure they'll save you a few watts.
    I was doing friendly crits every other tuesday. On the 5200 I was struggling to stay in the lead pack to the finish. Maybe 1 in 15 times. With the Venge (remember also 1 size larger frame and bike fit) I was mostly able to stay on the lead pack 5 out of 10 times and even competed in final sprint. So it did make a difference, but not something major. If I really focused on Crit racing then I might care more, but it is just for fun.. then I will just ride what I have.
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    What I've noticed about road bikes lately is how clean they look. I have a 2012 Cervelo S2. The cables at the front of my bike looks like a spaghetti mess compared to the new aero bikes. Regarding disc brakes and aero bikes...I read an article where they tested disc brake'd bikes in a wind tunnel and it showed that they are less aero than caliper brakes...despite the bike manufacturers are telling you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    .. Regarding disc brakes and aero bikes...I read an article where they tested disc brake'd bikes in a wind tunnel and it showed that they are less aero than caliper brakes...despite the bike manufacturers are telling you.
    Possibly so, but not having to deal with special pads to run on carbon wheels is nice. Plus disc brakes stop well. Not important for crits, but nice for hills. I will admit they are not the game changer they are on mtn bikes, but I feel like all road bikes will be going disc over time so I will have less time before they move on to the next thing. If I buy a new road bike every 10-15 years so be it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    What I've noticed about road bikes lately is how clean they look. I have a 2012 Cervelo S2. The cables at the front of my bike looks like a spaghetti mess compared to the new aero bikes. Regarding disc brakes and aero bikes...I read an article where they tested disc brake'd bikes in a wind tunnel and it showed that they are less aero than caliper brakes...despite the bike manufacturers are telling you.


    I ride in the mountains a lot and I do think disc brakes would be somewhat of a game changer, safer and faster. I also think that most road bikes will have them soon.
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  34. #134
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    We got some pretty serious climbs and descents here. Braking hard on steep sections can make my hands cramp up. I don't think I'd be able to tell the aero difference between disc and caliper brakes on a road bike. Whenever I do get around to getting another road bike...it'll have disc brakes. Bummer I won't be able to use my 404's.

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I don't think that's true at all. Disc brakes, better, more aero frames, better gearing and shifting, better wheels, wider rims, etc. I'd love a new road bike but will have to wait awhile for it.
    I don't ride road, but I work at a shop and get forced to talk about it a lot. High end road bike sales have absolutely stagnated and most in the industry will tell you it's because there just aren't big enough reasons to upgrade anymore.

    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Last year a moved from a 2001 Trek 5200 Road bike to a 2017 Specialized Venge Road bike

    Back in 2001 the 5200 was 2nd from top of line (5900 was top). Same frame geo was race in Tour de France. In 2017 the Venge I bought used the same frame as was race in in Tour as well. Both bikes had ultegra groupsets.
    The biggest difference was disc brakes on the venge and "aero" design. 2lbs less weight with Venge and carbon mid depth wheels. The Venge is faster, but only slightly. It so much cooler and frame wise fits me better, but that is size issue not bike geometry issue. I bought the venge because I wanted something newer. The 5200 was worn and I felt 1 size too small. I love the Venge, but I can't say it has made me a much faster rider. Yes I can see a bit more speed in some situations, but it very minimal. So minimal it requires stop watch or speed trace to see. They really ride the same, but I feel special on the venge, but felt old on the 5200. I did buy the Venge used and not in S-works trim to save some money, but it was 11x the value of 5200, but not 11x as fast. If I could not afford it would not have gotten it, but I could and it brings enjoyment. That is enough.
    Yes see here's a great example. Now let's talk about the differences between a 2001 mountain bike and a current one...

    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I ride in the mountains a lot and I do think disc brakes would be somewhat of a game changer, safer and faster. I also think that most road bikes will have them soon.
    Another great example; you're debating this with fellow road riders. Think you'd be having a debate about whether or not newer mountain bikes are a marked improvement? I don't think so, much past five years and I think everyone would agree newer bikes are better in every regard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDwayyo View Post
    I don't ride road, but I work at a shop and get forced to talk about it a lot. High end road bike sales have absolutely stagnated and most in the industry will tell you it's because there just aren't big enough reasons to upgrade anymore.


    Maybe that's just in your area. According to Bicycle Retailer road bike sales in 2018 were healthier than mtb sales.
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  37. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    What I've noticed about road bikes lately is how clean they look. I have a 2012 Cervelo S2. The cables at the front of my bike looks like a spaghetti mess compared to the new aero bikes.
    My '10 S2, which I did love riding, was trashed in an accident, and the gravel-type bike purchase was a (misguided?) attempt to replace both that and my cross bike, which was falling apart after 15 years.

    But even as the grouch, I must admit the no-cables look is really, really slick. And apparently with Di2 and hydros, it even results in a moderately serviceable bike.
    The above statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration

  38. #138
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    I ride a lot of road. No, road bikes haven't changed to the extremes that MTB has. On the other hand, my new to me (couple year old) Super6 feels light years above the 2008'ish high end road bike I had before it. I don't have any good data to support it, but ALL my fast times are on my new bike (but usually I can see the higher power numbers too).

    As of my commute this morning, I have 6000 miles on that bike in less than the full year I have had it.

    A friend of mine goes through road bikes about one a year. He buys a frame, pieces a bike together, and rides it for a while. When something else catches his fancy he strips it down, moves all of his parts over, and sells the old frame as barely used. I have seen him go through three bikes one year!

    I will be looking to replace it maybe in a year or so. I want eTap, discs, and a few other features of a newer design. But like my new MTB, I will hold on to that bike for a while.

  39. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Maybe that's just in your area. According to Bicycle Retailer road bike sales in 2018 were healthier than mtb sales.
    Only if you count gravel as road, which I think is unfair for this discussion.

    Road is up 8% in dollar value and down 2% in units sold (compared to MTB which is down 2% in dollar value and 28% in units sold)... But the growth in road is only being pushed by gravel bikes, every other segment of road bikes was down.

    In my mind, that supports my argument; a new genre of road bike (gravel) is popular because it actually offers something new, whereas true road bikes (which I'm arguing don't offer anything new) are down.

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    Yes, for road biking I have been "ho hum" about new stuff and its price for about four years now. I ride a name brand carbon frameset on 6800 Ultegra and custom aluminum wheels.

    For mountain biking, the tech still excites me. My all-rounder workhorse level mountain bike that sits in my trunk for after-work rides has gone through four frame iterations in the last 15 months. If I try a set of tires that I like, I'll order hubs, spokes, and rims of the optimal inner width and build a wheelset just for that tire. If I did something wrong like run a Morsa on a 30mm rim, I'll disassemble that wheelset on Friday and put 25mm rims on it for the ride on Saturday. If I see a new tire release that I might like, I'll buy a set just to try them.

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    Part of what I like about BMX is that the tech doesn't really matter. Just run it til it breaks and buy a new part.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    Part of what I like about BMX is that the tech doesn't really matter. Just run it til it breaks and buy a new part.
    Pretty much my MTB strategy too.
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  43. #143
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    Part of what I like about BMX is that the tech doesn't really matter. Just run it til it breaks and buy a new part.
    When was the last time BMX bikes had a major breakthrough in tech? Ceramic bearings? More and More carbon on the race track?

    The thing about MTB is the changing standards. I'd ride a 26er still but its hard to find parts; wheels, tires, forks...The price of bikes isn't what bothers me, its the constantly changing standard; wheel spacing, tapered forks, 12 speed cassettes...

    I have a frame that I want to replace because the chainstays are super long, that's the only reason I really want to swap frames, but its hard to find anything that would be an easy swap with 135qr rear wheel and a non tapered headtube.

    Just saying, it would have been a lot easier to make a frame swap back in 2005, than it is today.

    So yeah, I guess for me its not the price or the need to have top of the line stuff, but I do feel like I need to be current and up to date.

  44. #144
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    Injury has put me in my place and the kind of progressive mountain biking I love is behind me now. I was mostly never a gear slut, but might have had an addiction to tires at one point.

    I now spend a lot of time mucking about with vintage bikes and have found that, for me, finding something old and different is just as cool as getting something new and fancy was before. It's the same as what the others members here describe as they put away their techy bikes in favor of funky rigid plus bikes or nifty steel hard tails. Technical advancement doesn't hold the monopoly on what makes bicycles interesting and you can't put a price tag on "cool".


    Edit....and don't think for a moment that proprietary parts and changing standards is something new...just try to replace the nuts and bolts on an old English 3 speed or track down the cable for your early 70's Shimano 3CC hub ( which is not the same as the Shimano 333 cable from the same era.)
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  45. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    I've been working for about 35 years now, and most people I know are making a lot more than what they were making then.
    Maybe people these days are more likely to underperform and overspend? I definitely see a whole lot of that going on.
    I need to move to your area. We have the complete opposite experience you're describing.

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    I could still find all the old technology parts for 26er when I ditched it; I just couldn't find the new, good tech like wide carbon tubeless rims. So I went to 27.5 and 29er.

  47. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    I need to move to your area. We have the complete opposite experience you're describing.
    Yeah, MA is a whole different world than KY I'd imagine.

    I've heard it said by some people who have moved up here from southern states that they find things tend to move at a quicker pace in general.
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  48. #148
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Yeah, MA is a whole different world than KY I'd imagine.
    To roughly quote mark twain, ky is 20 years behind.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Train Wreck View Post
    When was the last time BMX bikes had a major breakthrough in tech? Ceramic bearings? More and More carbon on the race track?
    I have no idea on BMX racing. I kind of forget it exist.

    Freestyle has been a slow evolution. The mid school bikes (from the late 90s) were heavy as shit but really they weren't that different from today's bikes (some geometry changes, seats got lower, bars got taller, BBs changed, tires got wider, brakes went away, bikes got stronger but lighter) but you could really bolt on most modern parts to a mid-school bike or mid-school parts to a new school bike. I guess the last major "tech" change was the move from American BBs (not sure when late 90s/early 2000s).
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    Just to keep this thread and topic going, as it always seems to be good pulse check for MTBR.

    Qualifying one of my prior responses, the cost of the type of bike I look for has gotten cheaper, and quality better.

    That said, carbon is a different animal, it wasn't as widely available 10-15 years ago as today. A top of line carbon bike is expensive, so what? It's product segmentation at it's finest.

    But, like the demand for high end carbon, there is a healthy demand for carbon in general. So much so that even boutique aluminum frame makers have been forced to take on a more expensive frame.

    The bike industry is crazy competitive, there are no artificial barriers to entry. To the extent one perceives a higher cost it is much more likely demand driven for a carbon product that is more labor intensive.

    So, support aluminum if you want lower cost, or buy direct and bypass lbs for lower cost. Blame your fellow riders if you find carbon bikes out of reach.

    One thing that concerns me is consolidation in suspension and components has led to less choice on builds, which could be cheaper unless not enough competition, and fewer frame only options.







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  51. #151
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    Is the price of equivalent bikes, adjusted for inflation, actually going up, or is the upper limit of what the ultimate high-end bikes just going up? I think part of the feeling that bikes and parts are "more expensive" is partially in our heads.

    I don't have experience buying new bikes, just frames and parts. I am partial to steel hardtails, and the price of my current Karate Monkey frame only went up a few bucks since the first time I bought a KM frame in 2011 and the new one is much improved for the nominal price change.

    It actually seems like it's going down if you look at the same components from several years ago vs. today, it's the component 'improvement' that's raising prices. In other words, if you looked at a brand-name 26" 3x10 bike in 2011, that could cost $5000 back then where the equivalent bike, Chinese off-brand but the same components (mostly Shimano, some SRAM) as the 2011 brand-name bike, could be $1000-2000 now. But nobody likes 3x10 now so you have to spend more on 'better' drivetrains and everything else. Once in a while I see advertisements for 9-10 speed stuff where they say 'Used to be MSRP $700, now selling for $240', still new right out of the original box, just not popular now. There are a zillion good deals on brand-new bikes that have older components, so I guess the answer is yes it's the higher-end bikes with new components that are driving up the prices.

    A little poetic justice: several months ago I went into an LBS for the first time to put on a 2x9 22/36 crankset. The manager very politely asked why the hell I'm not doing 1x11. I said that's easy, not enough range, period. He then started making excuses that his mechanics 'forgot' how to work on 7-10 speeds, and then found a hairline 3mm deep crack in one of the chainstays, and said your frame is cracked, can't work on the bike. OK, I will forgive them for THEIR ignorance. I went elsewhere and got the crankset put on without an issue. Joined the first LBS' online group a few weeks ago. They have a top ten weekly mileage leaderboard. My two 6/7/8/9 speed bikes are leading the group in mileage every week lol. My inferior drivetrains are logging more miles than their 11/12 speed bikes. As they say, a $250 bike that's ridden every day is worth more than a $3000 bike that's sitting in the garage.
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  52. #152
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    Quote Originally Posted by richj8990 View Post
    Joined the first LBS' online group a few weeks ago. They have a top ten weekly mileage leaderboard. My two 6/7/8/9 speed bikes are leading the group in mileage every week lol.


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  53. #153
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    Quote Originally Posted by richj8990 View Post
    As they say, a $250 bike that's ridden every day is worth more than a $3000 bike that's sitting in the garage.
    They don't say that, because it's not true. In fact, it seems like the more I ride my bikes the less they're worth.

  54. #154
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDwayyo View Post
    They don't say that, because it's not true. In fact, it seems like the more I ride my bikes the less they're worth.
    I know a lot of people aren't like this, but I assume every bike I own will be worthless after my ownership. I'm just too destructive.

  55. #155
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    I know a lot of people aren't like this, but I assume every bike I own will be worthless after my ownership. I'm just too destructive.
    I'm with ya.
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  56. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    I know a lot of people aren't like this, but I assume every bike I own will be worthless after my ownership. I'm just too destructive.
    In my mind bikes are generally a disposable tool that gets used and thrown away after it's served it's usefulness. The only reasons I coddle my bikes is for vanity and for resale value once I'm done with it. That said I'm under no delusion that the bikes I own now will be the last ones I will ever own, but at the cost of buying something new and comparable, I'm going to do my darnedest to make them last.
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  57. #157
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    I know a lot of people aren't like this, but I assume every bike I own will be worthless after my ownership. I'm just too destructive.
    I ride them that way, but always sell after each season so I can't say I'm completely ignorant of their value.

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