Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
What the what???
Joined
·
12,711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I debated whether to post this on C&W, but since the common denominator is "inexpensive" I thought this forum might be a better choice.

This sport/hobby/obsession can get expensive fast. For folks like me who work with a very limited budget or for folks who just like to get the most bang for their buck, there are alternatives to many high dollar items. But are they worth it or is it true that 'you get what you pay for'?

To that end, I would like to start a thread of reviews specifically of inexpensive components and/or accessories. So...

What have you bought?
Where did you find it?
How much did you pay compared to some of the alternatives?
How well is it working out for you?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
128 Posts
It really doesn't help if you suffer from 'upgradeitus'

I just bought a new FELT AR-4 and then replaced the Ultegra with Force. I'm currently thinking about a new wheelset.

I start with google. Example, I'm trying to decide between HED Jet 4 and Reynolds Assault. If you google it, many reviews and forum threads come up. Once I decide on a product, I froogle the product (google shopping). I sort from low to high. I then find a reputable online seller and then look for coupon codes via retailmenot. I don't buy anything without coupon code.

I also comb ebay using bing cashback, but that ends in 2 days. Ebay is not always the cheapest so be careful there.

The classified section here, slowtwitch and Beginner Triathlete are good sources.

After many days of indecisive brainstorming, I purchase the product, then suffer through one day of buyers remorse. After that, all is good and I'm happy. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
460 Posts
I can't remember who it was that said - light, durable, inexpensive - pick two. But that is pretty much words to live by.

The only parts that need to be replaced regularly are tubes, tires, wrap and shorts.

Tubes - you can get a box of 10 on ebay for $20-30 depending on valve length. They all hold air.

Side note, buy tube repair kits for $1.50, 10 at time when you are ordering something else from PBK, Price Point, and others.

Tires must have a Kevlar belt so you do not get a flat every 200 miles. See PBK, Price Point, Nashbar, Jenson,...can find them for less $20 each. Just know that without flats you will miss the sweet ride of GP 4000s.

Every now and then, when you buy other stuff throw in some grip tape that should be less than $5 each. Mix up the colors. It is like changing the drapes in your living room.

Shorts...matter of personal opinion. I have never gotten a pair that was so bad they were unusable. Constantly watch for good deals. Buy at least two. If you find a good pair, it is nice to have backups.

While searching for other things, monitor cassette/chain prices. You should replace yours now. Go name brand or no go. I am a Shimano guy, so if it does not say Shimano Ultegra/SRAM it stays on the shelf. Dura Ace? See the first line. 105? Maybe. I can not remember what the original order was, but Jenson had 10 speed Ultegra chains for $15-20 so I threw in a couple. Price Point had a $30 deal on cassettes. Luck of the draw. Keep your eyes open.
 

·
classiquesklassieker
Joined
·
3,106 Posts
Opus51569 said:
I debated whether to post this on C&W, but since the common denominator is "inexpensive" I thought this forum might be a better choice.

This sport/hobby/obsession can get expensive fast. For folks like me who work with a very limited budget or for folks who just like to get the most bang for their buck, there are alternatives to many high dollar items. But are they worth it or is it true that 'you get what you pay for'?

To that end, I would like to start a thread of reviews specifically of inexpensive components and/or accessories. So...

What have you bought?
Where did you find it?
How much did you pay compared to some of the alternatives?
How well is it working out for you?
Considering there are really thousands of inexpensive components, and that everybody's definition of "inexpensive" are different, wouldn't your undirected question benefit from setting a more limited scope?

For example,
* Which components are you in need of (or think that you are in need of)?
* What is your price point?

Unless you are looking for comments on shopping methods or how to get over upgrade-itis.
 

·
the fist
Joined
·
13,711 Posts
It would be interesting to know 'ceilings' for individual purchases;

Some wont pay more than 100$ for a helmet or pair of shoes. Others may pay top dollar for a helmet but nomore than 50$ for a jersey.
 

·
What the what???
Joined
·
12,711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
orange_julius said:
Considering there are really thousands of inexpensive components, and that everybody's definition of "inexpensive" are different, wouldn't your undirected question benefit from setting a more limited scope?

For example,
* Which components are you in need of (or think that you are in need of)?
* What is your price point?

Unless you are looking for comments on shopping methods or how to get over upgrade-itis.
Perhaps my OP wasn't clear. I wasn't looking for guidance on any item I am looking to buy in particular. I was hoping to establish a thread on inexpensive items in general that anyone could use as a reference.
 

·
What the what???
Joined
·
12,711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
JohnHenry said:
It would be interesting to know 'ceilings' for individual purchases;

Some wont pay more than 100$ for a helmet or pair of shoes. Others may pay top dollar for a helmet but nomore than 50$ for a jersey.
By this standard, I must be a cheap bastard. I don't own road shoes. I wouldn't pay more than $50 for a helmet or probably $35 for a jersey... :) I see your point, though. "Inexpensive" is a relative term. I was thinking of it more in relation to the price range of most items. Take a helmet for example. At the high end, one could easily drop $200 or more. On the low end, $30. "Inexpensive" to me would be those helmets in the lower 1/4 of the price range.
 

·
Stumpcake!
Joined
·
5,950 Posts
I've brought down my cycling costs by learning to do stuff myself. I do all my own maintenance and repairs. Shoot, I even learned to lace up a set of wheels. It's not that hard...it just takes patience. By doing all this, I've freed up funds to buy the things I want and not get so caught up in the price of it.
 

·
What the what???
Joined
·
12,711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here's how I envisioned this thread evolving:

1.) I bought a Zefal bar-end mirror for my commuter.

2.) I found it in, of all places, Wal-Mart.

3.) I paid $5 for it.

4.) The mirror surface is clear. Installation was easy. The one problem I have is that the joints that allow it to adjust are a little loose. Bumping it, or even hitting a pothole will sometimes bounce it out of place. I'm thinking of using some electrical tape to hold them more firmly in place.
 

·
waterproof*
Joined
·
41,608 Posts
I race, a lot. Travel and entry fees cost way too much, so I have to economize somehow.

I paid $999 delivered for my full Campy record Cannondale (ebay). I use either the stock wheels (Campy) or some Neuvations (cheeeep). I buy the team kit or Nashbar seconds. I don't buy "nutrition products". I don't need high-zoot equipment because I'm a friggin 44 year old cat 3 and I have raced enough to know I'll still be pack fill with faster wheels.

For a non-racer, just riding, you can go waaaay cheaper and still have quality gear that's fast enough, reliable and comfy. I've raced (and placed) on a bike that cost $440 from ebay, that most of the typical rally / club riders I know would turn their noses up at.
I do almost all my own wrenching. It's simple stuff.

Things I don't scrimp on:
- good tires
- saddles - there are only 2 kinds I like
- shoes - fit is critical so I buy local
- I'll pay the LBS to work on proprietary parts like my Campy wheels, though it pains me.

Tips:
- join a local club so you can get discounts at the LBS, and/or
- buy the house brand nashbar clothes
- patch tubes instead of buying new
- get a basic toolkit and learn how to use it
- ride safely and avoid crashing
- "don't buy upgrades, ride up grades" - Eddy Merckx
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,541 Posts
nashbar and performance bike dot com.

nashbar so cheap cheap cheap. get on their mailing list and troll their web site. cheap gear is always available, but when they drop a discount you can pick up first quality upgrades for up to half off. as in four five six hundred bucks off. for cycling shyt to me that says good deal.

performance is basically nashbar's sister company. be patient. if you miss a sale on nashbar (sometimes they go real deep via e mail for a 24 hour period, then withdraw the sale price), it is usually replicated right away at performance. i think generally performance probably has a better variety and better quality gear --performance brand stuff is better quality than nashbar brand stuff, for example. and performance carries nicer bikes, which, occassionally, go deep deep deep discount...up to half off on everything from aluminum tiagra and one oh five to carbon to titanium. good place to shop.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,613 Posts
items for cheap don't last long so a list of specific items would be soon outdated - hunt the regular sites (ebay, UK sites, pricepoint, nashbar). E.g., nashbar has fsa energy bar on sale for $17 down from 79 (40cm size only). There's a coupon floating around for an additional 25% off that and free shipping if you buy $75 worth of stuff. Good bar - used by Saxo Bank last year.
 

·
What the what???
Joined
·
12,711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Actually, I had thought to avoid the uber sales for this very reason and focus on items that are inexpensive on a regular basis. By the time you bought the item and tested it out enough to write an opinion about it, the sale would likely be over.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top