Rule #12 and the Cascade Effect

[rule number=12/]

That is a very reasonable opening salvo for the Rule about bike ownership. Three is good and certainly a minimum, and we are talking road bikes here, if there was any doubt. They naturally become ordered: the #1 is ichi-ban, top dog, go-to bike for every and all rides. #2 was the old #1, it sits on the bench, always ready. By the time you get to bike #3, there is a good chance old #3 doesn’t get ridden too often, except commuting, but is that any reason not to keep #3 updated, upgraded and ready for action…just in case?

My #3 is my thirty year old steel bike. It was my #1 for many great years and great kilometers. It stayed behind on the mainland, stabled in an unheated space at my parents, waiting for me to visit them and her. And you better have a bike when visiting your parents. Sometimes the #3 has to do this kind of work. But now the Bella is back with the rest of the crew and needs to be reborn hard.

I already upgraded the steel bike whenever I could. It would not be acceptable to show up for the strade bianche granfondo on this machine despite its age. The carbone ergo levers and the 8 speed Jan Ullrich vento wheels would most likely be met with moustache twisting disapproval. I don’t want a classic steel bike with six speeds and downtube shifters, FFS. I want mine with lots of modern gears, fast wheels, better handlebars and a nice new paint job.

Besides Rule #12’s unwritten clause stating your partner needs to be on a slightly more awesome bike than your own, the upgrade-downward cascade effect cannot be left unmentioned. Upgrading your or your partner’s #1 bike’s components can mean a shower of quality components now cascade down the line. When I upgrade my wife’s Campagnolo Chorus 11 speed to Record 11, one, she will be a full gruppo above me, flying overhead in the clouds. That frees up the slightly beaten up Chorus 11 gruppo for my slightly beaten up #3. My wife is happy, I am happy, bikes are happy, the equation balances out.

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121 Replies to “Rule #12 and the Cascade Effect”

  1. You can never have too many, continued.

    1989 Marinoni SLX.

    1999 Marinoni EL and Deddacia mix.

    2000 Marinoni Brain track bike.

    2005 Marinoni Zona.

    All heavily chromed, with variations of Camagnolo record, chorus, daytona. Ambrosio excellence, excellelite rims.

    1991 Masi Team 3V , Campagnolo athena/chorus mix. mavic Gel 280 tubulars

    Unknown custom built roadie, columbus Foco, with daytona.

    2010 Specialized Allez, shimano mix wet weather/winter bike.

    1980? Nishiki Tri A, Tange infinity, shimano 600.

    Late 1980 Japanese Bianchi, Tange tubing non original Shimano 600.

    Rocky Mountain (rigid fork) hammer mtn. bike Tange prestige frame, xt/lx mix,

    Strictly adhereing to the N+1 princilpal. #s 1-6 remain as the core group, the remainder will be rotated on a regular basis, thus the financial overseer remains suitably and consistently unsure of the status.

  2. My humble stable is not much compared to some of the bikes here, but nonetheless…

    #1. 2000 Lemond Zurich, Reynolds 853, Ultegra

    #2, #9, Commuter. 2000 Lemond Chambery, Aluminum, Ultegra

    #3. 1984 Raleigh Team USA. Raleigh 555 Double butted steel, 105 groupsan, trainer bike.

    #4. 1986 Benotto Modelo 2500, Columbus SL, Shimano 600, Fair weather cruising bike.

    #5. 1998 Cannondale R800, aluminum, Ultegra, Wife’s steed.

    #6. 1997 GT Force, Aluminum triple triangle, RSX groupsan, Daughter’s Steed, pending upgrade to 9 speed microshift.

    #7.2004 K2, aluminum, tiagra, loaner bike for friends, #9 bike for the girls

    In addition, I have a steel Raleigh XXIX+g MTB, a trek MTB for oldest son, Specialized MTB for next son, and 3 other generic bikes for the other 2 boys.

    Being on a strict budget, the best part about this stable is that I have less into it than a new top end bike goes for and I keep up just find.

     

    Cheers!

    Fred

  3. #1 Eddy Merckx EMX525 with Ultegra Di2 (2015)

    #2 Scott CR1 with mech. Ultegra (2012)

    #3 Chesini Arena with Ultegra 600, I know, it should be Campa, will happen some day! (early 1990s)

    #4 Daddy’s vintage Belgian racer Securitas/Huy (1937) with non-vintage group-set. The vintage 3-speed set was lost in my learning period, somewhere in the 1970s.when those things had no value, sniff! :-(

    #5 Rose cyclo-cross bike for playing in the woods (2013)

  4. @EBruner

    @Buck Rogers

    Oh, I don’t have a real answer. I dig them, 100% bespoke, not made in Asia, Kurt is a great guy to work with, etc. Both my Jaeghers are the last frames I have bought, and other than vintage, I doubt I buy a mass produced frame again. I think I would rather spend my money with an artisan. And in there US at least the chances are slim to none that anyone else will line up at an event on the same frame as you.

    -Eddie

    Fair enough!  Makes total sense.

    They are a class act outfit and if I ever get another bike (so, in other words, the next bike I get) will be one of theirs.

     

  5. My wife has a decent Trek aluminum bike, but doesn’t think hers should be better than mine.  That said, I decided to upgrade the components from Tiagra to Ultegra from an “organ donor” Bianchi I picked up, which caused some cascading.  I was going to sell the Bianchi frame, but it turned into a build project, still piecing it together with Campa.  (It’s just wrong to get rid of a perfectly good celeste Bianchi, after all.)

    There’s no way she will ever agree to ignore/not count my MTBs.  Plus, I spent many years racing and have a long history with them, so they’re getting included in the list here.

    #1  Pegoretti custom team with Record

    #2  Somec with Super Record, early ’80s

    #3  Somec with C-Record/Deltas, circa 1990

    #4  Kuota Kross carbon CX with Dura Ace for gravel grinders

    #5  Fat Chance Yo! Eddy steel hardtail

    #6  Bontrager Titanium hardtail

    #7  Turner full suspension mtb

    #8  Motobecane single speed for commuting/restaurant hopping (cheaper than homeowner insurance deductible that I can leave locked up and not worry)

    #9  Bianchi frame/build project, may replace #8

    I’m with @Buck Rogers, I’m leaning towards a Jaegher for my next bike, but that won’t happen for a while.

  6. @Buck Rogers

     

     

    I like where this thread is going!

    New #1 (frame shipped but not arrived yet): Hampsten/Eriksen Ti with 11 spd Campag SR.

     

    PLEASE post some pics of the new #1 when you get it!!!   Awesome!

  7. @MangoDave

    @Buck Rogers

    I like where this thread is going!

    New #1 (frame shipped but not arrived yet): Hampsten/Eriksen Ti with 11 spd Campag SR.

    PLEASE post some pics of the new #1 when you get it!!! Awesome!

    Oh BROTHER!  I cannot FUCKING WAIT!  The frame is literally in the mail and I have the full groupo sitting at home just waiting to be mated up with it!  I also have a full Fizik cockpit and Chris King headset with the Eriksen Ti seatpost (Sweetpost) and King Ti cages.  My wheelset is being built in Scotland by Big Al right now as well (Ambrosio Nemesis with Royce Venus hubs with FMB tubulars).  Totally my life dream bike!

    I’ve already named her “Ronde” as the RVV cyclosportif will be our honeymoon together!

    No doubt I will be posting more than a few photos! (more likely it will be an obnoxious amount of photos).

  8. @Buck Rogers

    That sounds like one sexy machine.

    Nice call on the nemeses. Out of interest, how come you went with Big Al to build your wheels? Was he recommended to you? I’ve got a nice set of record hubs I’d like to rebuild with nemesis… someday.

  9. n3 is still located somewhere on the inter webs or dusty in the back of a shop.

    n1 – Carbone Argon 18

    n2 – Ribble All winter trainer/rain bike

    n3 – in my prayers to santa or pleadings to the prophet one day will be met.  She will be steel, downtube shifters and MUST have chromed chain stays and Gruppo.

    Now all I need to do is try and stop lusting after a new Tanglewood acoustic dreadnought in Mahogany and put my pennies in the V piggy bank!

  10. @DVMR

    @Buck Rogers

    That sounds like one sexy machine.

    Nice call on the nemeses. Out of interest, how come you went with Big Al to build your wheels? Was he recommended to you? I’ve got a nice set of record hubs I’d like to rebuild with nemesis… someday.

    Great question!  When I found out I was moving to Europe last winter/spring I started to search for the best custom wheelbuilders in all of Europe so I would not have to worry so much about shipping, etc.

    I searched and searched the internet, read reviews and sent off a few emails/facebook messages to shops but the problem with Big Al, even though his name popped up everywhere on my searches, was that he did not have email or facebook.  I said, “WTF?  Screw this guy.”  And then I kept reading and finally said, “fuck it, I’ll give his shop a ring and see if I can get a message through to him” and when I rang, Big Al himself picked up and we proceeded to have the fucking funniest most brilliant conversation I’d had in ages.  Laughing my ass off and talking about all things cycling and not cycling.

    After thirty minutes or so of chatting (of which I could only understand about 40-50% with his accent) he goes, “Okay, yeah. I’ll build you some wheels” which made me realize that I think that he was interviewing me more than I was him about the build!

    The guy is Legend and I “cannae wait” to make my trip over to Scotland to pick up my wheelset.

    Oh yeah, I was also speaking to him last week and I asked about the money and how I could at least wire him 50%, etc and he goes something along the line, “Oh, donna worry bout that.  I’ll build ’em up and we can work it out when you git ‘ere”.  We’re talking about a over $1,000 dollar wheelset.  Just crazy.

    Cannot get over how much it was pre-ordained that he was going to build my wheelset for this ultimate bike of mine.

  11. @MangoDave

    My wife has a decent Trek aluminum bike, but doesn’t think hers should be better than mine. That said, I decided to upgrade the components from Tiagra to Ultegra from an “organ donor” Bianchi I picked up, which caused some cascading. I was going to sell the Bianchi frame, but it turned into a build project, still piecing it together with Campa. (It’s just wrong to get rid of a perfectly good celeste Bianchi, after all.)

    There’s no way she will ever agree to ignore/not count my MTBs. Plus, I spent many years racing and have a long history with them, so they’re getting included in the list here.

    #1 Pegoretti custom team with Record

    #2 Somec with Super Record, early ’80s

    #3 Somec with C-Record/Deltas, circa 1990

    #4 Kuota Kross carbon CX with Dura Ace for gravel grinders

    #5 Fat Chance Yo! Eddy steel hardtail

    #6 Bontrager Titanium hardtail

    #7 Turner full suspension mtb

    #8 Motobecane single speed for commuting/restaurant hopping (cheaper than homeowner insurance deductible that I can leave locked up and not worry)

    #9 Bianchi frame/build project, may replace #8

    I’m with @Buck Rogers, I’m leaning towards a Jaegher for my next bike, but that won’t happen for a while.

    You had me at “Peggorati custom”!!!

  12. @Carel

    #1 Eddy Merckx EMX525 with Ultegra Di2 (2015)

    #2 Scott CR1 with mech. Ultegra (2012)

    #3 Chesini Arena with Ultegra 600, I know, it should be Campa, will happen some day! (early 1990s)

    #4 Daddy’s vintage Belgian racer Securitas/Huy (1937) with non-vintage group-set. The vintage 3-speed set was lost in my learning period, somewhere in the 1970s.when those things had no value, sniff! :-(

    #5 Rose cyclo-cross bike for playing in the woods (2013)

    NICE Merckx!  I LOVE my Merckx.  Mine might become my #2 but, like a good polygamist, she’ll always be my true co-#1.

  13. @Buck Rogers

    @DVMR

    @Buck Rogers

    That sounds like one sexy machine.

    Nice call on the nemeses. Out of interest, how come you went with Big Al to build your wheels? Was he recommended to you? I’ve got a nice set of record hubs I’d like to rebuild with nemesis… someday.

    Great question! When I found out I was moving to Europe last winter/spring I started to search for the best custom wheelbuilders in all of Europe so I would not have to worry so much about shipping, etc.

    I searched and searched the internet, read reviews and sent off a few emails/facebook messages to shops but the problem with Big Al, even though his name popped up everywhere on my searches, was that he did not have email or facebook. I said, “WTF? Screw this guy.” And then I kept reading and finally said, “fuck it, I’ll give his shop a ring and see if I can get a message through to him” and when I rang, Big Al himself picked up and we proceeded to have the fucking funniest most brilliant conversation I’d had in ages. Laughing my ass off and talking about all things cycling and not cycling.

    After thirty minutes or so of chatting (of which I could only understand about 40-50% with his accent) he goes, “Okay, yeah. I’ll build you some wheels” which made me realize that I think that he was interviewing me more than I was him about the build!

    The guy is Legend and I “cannae wait” to make my trip over to Scotland to pick up my wheelset.

    Oh yeah, I was also speaking to him last week and I asked about the money and how I could at least wire him 50%, etc and he goes something along the line, “Oh, donna worry bout that. I’ll build ’em up and we can work it out when you git ‘ere”. We’re talking about a over $1,000 dollar wheelset. Just crazy.

    Cannot get over how much it was pre-ordained that he was going to build my wheelset for this ultimate bike of mine.

    None too shabby an answer, either! sounds like a character alright, and  I love his old school shop/mentality/organizational skills.

    If you’re up in that direction and have time, I would highly recommend seeing as much of Scotland as you can. particularly the highlands and islands.

  14. @Buck Rogers

    @DVMR

    @Buck Rogers

    That sounds like one sexy machine.

    Nice call on the nemeses. Out of interest, how come you went with Big Al to build your wheels? Was he recommended to you? I’ve got a nice set of record hubs I’d like to rebuild with nemesis… someday.

    Great question! When I found out I was moving to Europe last winter/spring I started to search for the best custom wheelbuilders in all of Europe so I would not have to worry so much about shipping, etc.

    I searched and searched the internet, read reviews and sent off a few emails/facebook messages to shops but the problem with Big Al, even though his name popped up everywhere on my searches, was that he did not have email or facebook. I said, “WTF? Screw this guy.” And then I kept reading and finally said, “fuck it, I’ll give his shop a ring and see if I can get a message through to him” and when I rang, Big Al himself picked up and we proceeded to have the fucking funniest most brilliant conversation I’d had in ages. Laughing my ass off and talking about all things cycling and not cycling.

    After thirty minutes or so of chatting (of which I could only understand about 40-50% with his accent) he goes, “Okay, yeah. I’ll build you some wheels” which made me realize that I think that he was interviewing me more than I was him about the build!

    The guy is Legend and I “cannae wait” to make my trip over to Scotland to pick up my wheelset.

    Oh yeah, I was also speaking to him last week and I asked about the money and how I could at least wire him 50%, etc and he goes something along the line, “Oh, donna worry bout that. I’ll build ’em up and we can work it out when you git ‘ere”. We’re talking about a over $1,000 dollar wheelset. Just crazy.

    Cannot get over how much it was pre-ordained that he was going to build my wheelset for this ultimate bike of mine.

    I spent an afternoon at Wheelcraft a couple of years ago. A friend and I were staying in Glasgow for the weekend so rode out to visit Big Al, as my mate had paid a visit the year before and declared it his new favourite bike spot. As we were up from London, Al declared he’d been to London once when he was about fourteen and saw no reason to return. The guy is gold and watching him work is mesmerising.

    BTW, I’ve signed up for the 230km RVV Cyclo so hope to see your new build in the flesh.

     

  15. Man, I’m feeling inadequate now, with just 3 bikes. Strangely enough my original (recent) number 1 (Pinarello Angliru) became my number 3 as soon as the new number 1 arrived (Pinarello FP7), mainly because the number 2 (Pinarello Sestriere) is lighter and more comfortable (steel over aluminum). However, I still wrestle with the irony that the aluminium Angliru stays home except in the worst of weather, whilst the steel Sestriere becomes winter no. 1 and summer wet weather bike.

  16. Gonna have to give a shout out to the Community regarding my stable. I have a pretty nice set of bikes and don’t foresee any new additions in the near future, as I’m all set. AND, time to ride, not bikes to ride is the issue these days with a new child in the house.

    Since I’ve been ’round here a few years, I played my cards right. Did all of my $$$ stable additions when I a) wasn’t married b) wasn’t with a child. Putting together a modest commuter is far less cause for a serious lecture from the better half than “Honey, I think I’m going to order a custom built road bike and go for a top tier gruppo. And carbon wheels.” From hearing the tales of others, I knew it was best to do all major bikes purchases BEFORE major life changes.

  17. @Gianni

    @Neil

    Three bike minimum? And all road bikes? What fantastic 1st world problems we contrive.

    Yes Neil, N+1 is a bitch, for truth.

    Jeez, buddy. You’re amongst a Community of cycling enthusiasts. We love bikes and riding them. I dare say nobody here is behind on child support or their mortgage or committing white collar crimes to buy the steeds they love and use. Plus, this isn’t throwing away money on a drug habit or gambling or a monster truck we don’t need. We’re acquiring beautiful machines that are a built-in diet and which improve our overall health, both physical and mental.

    For me personally, I picked up most of my bikes when I was getting by on a meager grad student stipend. I lived very frugally and put money into bikes I wanted and rode like crazy. I also needed a lifetime sport at that point, after burning out on my previous sporting pursuits. I can’t even begin to quantify what cycling, and this Community, have meant to me. I sure as hell don’t know what I’d do with my free time and free mental space if it wasn’t riding, talking, and loving bicycles. I ride avidly and daily, both for fun and fitness and to get around. Additionally, I haven’t owned a car since I got hooked on the sport in the early aughts. I might have a whole bunch of bikes, but they still add up to only a modest automobile. And I don’t buy petrol. And I don’t pay for insurance. And I’m not sitting in a car in traffic, I’m pedaling. Many people probably spend $5 a day on fancy drinks, maybe 8-$10 on lunch, etc. Add that up and I’d rather avoid those and buy a kick ass bike to ride. Life is about choices and I choose to be a Follower. I have a neighbor who has two Mercedes in his driveway and rides a department store bike. Makes no sense to me, but hey, he puts his money towards what he values. I’m not fabulously wealthy, but I’m happy to spend my disposable income on something very important to me.

    Anyway, maybe you just meant that in jest. But, the Rule is kinda in jest and you’re talking to serious cycling enthusiasts. I’m completely modest and frugal in the rest of my life, but when it comes to bicycles, I take pride and joy in Looking Fantastic and riding awesome machines.

  18. @Buck Rogers

    @MangoDave

     

    #1 Pegoretti custom team with Record

    #2 Somec with Super Record, early ’80s

    #3 Somec with C-Record/Deltas, circa 1990

    #4 Kuota Kross carbon CX with Dura Ace for gravel grinders

    #5 Fat Chance Yo! Eddy steel hardtail

    #6 Bontrager Titanium hardtail

    #7 Turner full suspension mtb

    #8 Motobecane single speed for commuting/restaurant hopping (cheaper than homeowner insurance deductible that I can leave locked up and not worry)

    #9 Bianchi frame/build project, may replace #8

    I’m with @Buck Rogers, I’m leaning towards a Jaegher for my next bike, but that won’t happen for a while.

    You had me at “Peggorati custom”!!!

    I’d be happy if it was the last and only road bike I own.  But that doesn’t stop me from looking at all the other great bikes out there.  I’ve had it for a very long time in bike-years (16), we’ve been down many roads together.

    Your new build is indeed a dream bike, post as many photos as you want.

  19. @Ron

    @Gianni

    @Neil

    Three bike minimum? And all road bikes? What fantastic 1st world problems we contrive.

    Yes Neil, N+1 is a bitch, for truth.

    Jeez, buddy. You’re amongst a Community of cycling enthusiasts. We love bikes and riding them. I dare say nobody here is behind on child support or their mortgage or committing white collar crimes to buy the steeds they love and use. Plus, this isn’t throwing away money on a drug habit or gambling or a monster truck we don’t need. We’re acquiring beautiful machines that are a built-in diet and which improve our overall health, both physical and mental.

    For me personally, I picked up most of my bikes when I was getting by on a meager grad student stipend. I lived very frugally and put money into bikes I wanted and rode like crazy. I also needed a lifetime sport at that point, after burning out on my previous sporting pursuits. I can’t even begin to quantify what cycling, and this Community, have meant to me. I sure as hell don’t know what I’d do with my free time and free mental space if it wasn’t riding, talking, and loving bicycles. I ride avidly and daily, both for fun and fitness and to get around. Additionally, I haven’t owned a car since I got hooked on the sport in the early aughts. I might have a whole bunch of bikes, but they still add up to only a modest automobile. And I don’t buy petrol. And I don’t pay for insurance. And I’m not sitting in a car in traffic, I’m pedaling. Many people probably spend $5 a day on fancy drinks, maybe 8-$10 on lunch, etc. Add that up and I’d rather avoid those and buy a kick ass bike to ride. Life is about choices and I choose to be a Follower. I have a neighbor who has two Mercedes in his driveway and rides a department store bike. Makes no sense to me, but hey, he puts his money towards what he values. I’m not fabulously wealthy, but I’m happy to spend my disposable income on something very important to me.

    Anyway, maybe you just meant that in jest. But, the Rule is kinda in jest and you’re talking to serious cycling enthusiasts. I’m completely modest and frugal in the rest of my life, but when it comes to bicycles, I take pride and joy in Looking Fantastic and riding awesome machines.

    THIS x100.  i haven’t owned a car or truck for 17+ years.  that this is still not practical for every cyclist nowadays is evident, but things are improving all the time.  not suffering the costs of ownership has afforded me and my family a much higher standard of living, and a GREAT education for my children.  i haven’t even owned many bikes during this time, but anybody with a basic grasp of arithmetic and the inclination can quickly compute how many Pegorettis and Nags one can purchase for the cost of a new sedan.

  20. @Ron

    Gonna have to give a shout out to the Community regarding my stable. I have a pretty nice set of bikes and don’t foresee any new additions in the near future, as I’m all set. AND, time to ride, not bikes to ride is the issue these days with a new child in the house.

    Since I’ve been ’round here a few years, I played my cards right. Did all of my $$$ stable additions when I a) wasn’t married b) wasn’t with a child. Putting together a modest commuter is far less cause for a serious lecture from the better half than “Honey, I think I’m going to order a custom built road bike and go for a top tier gruppo. And carbon wheels.” From hearing the tales of others, I knew it was best to do all major bikes purchases BEFORE major life changes.

    Now there is a smart man with a sound long term plan!  All of you single lads and lasses out there take note, very good advice right here!

  21. @E-Digs

    I spent an afternoon at Wheelcraft a couple of years ago. A friend and I were staying in Glasgow for the weekend so rode out to visit Big Al, as my mate had paid a visit the year before and declared it his new favourite bike spot. As we were up from London, Al declared he’d been to London once when he was about fourteen and saw no reason to return. The guy is gold and watching him work is mesmerising.

    BTW, I’ve signed up for the 230km RVV Cyclo so hope to see your new build in the flesh.

    He is so cool!

    And absolutely brilliant news that you’ll be doing the 230 K as well!!!  We’ll definitely have to link up at the start so I can watch you ride off down the road away from me!

    I still need to get ahold of the Pave’ Boys for my logistics but we need to talk when the RVV gets closer this spring!

     

  22. @Buck Rogers

    @Carel

    #1 Eddy Merckx EMX525 with Ultegra Di2 (2015)

    #2 Scott CR1 with mech. Ultegra (2012)

    #3 Chesini Arena with Ultegra 600, I know, it should be Campa, will happen some day! (early 1990s)

    #4 Daddy’s vintage Belgian racer Securitas/Huy (1937) with non-vintage group-set. The vintage 3-speed set was lost in my learning period, somewhere in the 1970s.when those things had no value, sniff! :-(

    #5 Rose cyclo-cross bike for playing in the woods (2013)

    NICE Merckx! I LOVE my Merckx. Mine might become my #2 but, like a good polygamist, she’ll always be my true co-#1.

    Speaking of polygamy: I bought my current #1 not from my regular bike shop. Now I have to be super careful in what I buy for it, who I talk to about it, where I take it for maintenance, etc. I’ve never cheated on my wife or previous girl friends, but man it can be a lot of work.

  23. @Buck Rogers

    @Ron

    Gonna have to give a shout out to the Community regarding my stable. I have a pretty nice set of bikes and don’t foresee any new additions in the near future, as I’m all set. AND, time to ride, not bikes to ride is the issue these days with a new child in the house.

    Since I’ve been ’round here a few years, I played my cards right. Did all of my $$$ stable additions when I a) wasn’t married b) wasn’t with a child. Putting together a modest commuter is far less cause for a serious lecture from the better half than “Honey, I think I’m going to order a custom built road bike and go for a top tier gruppo. And carbon wheels.” From hearing the tales of others, I knew it was best to do all major bikes purchases BEFORE major life changes.

    Now there is a smart man with a sound long term plan! All of you single lads and lasses out there take note, very good advice right here!

    I’ll take it one step further…in grad school I lived with my parents, as they were nearby my university. I generally don’t give a hoot what others think of me, so moving in with my parents in my later 20s was something I just kind of laughed at. Saved rent = more bikes! Plus, I was old enough to realize, “You know, I might never see my parents this often again.” Win and win.

    I purchased both my Tommasini and Casati on my grad student stipend money. Thank YOU New York State taxpayers. Buck…if you were down with the Black Knights on the river a few years back, you are part of the reason I could afford them! How about that?

  24. @Cary

    @Ron

    @Gianni

    @Neil

    Three bike minimum? And all road bikes? What fantastic 1st world problems we contrive.

    Yes Neil, N+1 is a bitch, for truth.

    Jeez, buddy. You’re amongst a Community of cycling enthusiasts. We love bikes and riding them. I dare say nobody here is behind on child support or their mortgage or committing white collar crimes to buy the steeds they love and use. Plus, this isn’t throwing away money on a drug habit or gambling or a monster truck we don’t need. We’re acquiring beautiful machines that are a built-in diet and which improve our overall health, both physical and mental.

    For me personally, I picked up most of my bikes when I was getting by on a meager grad student stipend. I lived very frugally and put money into bikes I wanted and rode like crazy. I also needed a lifetime sport at that point, after burning out on my previous sporting pursuits. I can’t even begin to quantify what cycling, and this Community, have meant to me. I sure as hell don’t know what I’d do with my free time and free mental space if it wasn’t riding, talking, and loving bicycles. I ride avidly and daily, both for fun and fitness and to get around. Additionally, I haven’t owned a car since I got hooked on the sport in the early aughts. I might have a whole bunch of bikes, but they still add up to only a modest automobile. And I don’t buy petrol. And I don’t pay for insurance. And I’m not sitting in a car in traffic, I’m pedaling. Many people probably spend $5 a day on fancy drinks, maybe 8-$10 on lunch, etc. Add that up and I’d rather avoid those and buy a kick ass bike to ride. Life is about choices and I choose to be a Follower. I have a neighbor who has two Mercedes in his driveway and rides a department store bike. Makes no sense to me, but hey, he puts his money towards what he values. I’m not fabulously wealthy, but I’m happy to spend my disposable income on something very important to me.

    Anyway, maybe you just meant that in jest. But, the Rule is kinda in jest and you’re talking to serious cycling enthusiasts. I’m completely modest and frugal in the rest of my life, but when it comes to bicycles, I take pride and joy in Looking Fantastic and riding awesome machines.

    THIS x100. i haven’t owned a car or truck for 17+ years. that this is still not practical for every cyclist nowadays is evident, but things are improving all the time. not suffering the costs of ownership has afforded me and my family a much higher standard of living, and a GREAT education for my children. i haven’t even owned many bikes during this time, but anybody with a basic grasp of arithmetic and the inclination can quickly compute how many Pegorettis and Nags one can purchase for the cost of a new sedan.

    A few things, Cary. Yep, not owning a car has put what I’ve spent on bikes in perspective. Even though I’ve spent quite a bit, still not like buying, maintaining, and insuring a car. And yep, I don’t think you MUST have a slew of nice bikes, but I don’t think anyone should feel guilty for owning, loving, and riding pretty bicycles.

    I completely understand car free isn’t for everyone. I count my blessings daily that I can bike to work on a MUP and live in a city where cycling is pretty accessible and not horribly dangerous (though not great). I know this isn’t an option for all. With that said, I do very much wish more series type A roadies would get on a bike when it’s not training ride day. If you are okay riding hundreds of kilometers all over the place, surely you can make commuting to the store or work a reality. THIS is somewhere I think roadies can evolve as U.S. cities get more dense. I know a few dudes who only ride to race/train and drive everywhere else. I’m not preachy, but hell, if you can keep one more chugging engine off the roads, why not? I’m also extremely lucky with where we bought our house. I can walk my son to school when he’s old enough. After that school, I can bike him to the next one. A neighbor rides his daughter in daily in a trailer. How cool!

    As a little aside, I live around the corner from a major top notch university. They bill themselves as green and have a world-renown environmental school. On a daily basis I see undergrads living in a shared house emerge one by one and drive solo to campus, which you can throw a rock and hit. NOT KIDDING. I think to myself, “So this is the next generation? The ones I entrust the environment to? The ones at a green university and a top flight one?” It’s depressing.

  25. @Ron

    @Cary

    @Ron

    @Gianni

    @Neil

    Three bike minimum? And all road bikes? What fantastic 1st world problems we contrive.

    Yes Neil, N+1 is a bitch, for truth.

    Jeez, buddy. You’re amongst a Community of cycling enthusiasts. We love bikes and riding them. I dare say nobody here is behind on child support or their mortgage or committing white collar crimes to buy the steeds they love and use. Plus, this isn’t throwing away money on a drug habit or gambling or a monster truck we don’t need. We’re acquiring beautiful machines that are a built-in diet and which improve our overall health, both physical and mental.

    For me personally, I picked up most of my bikes when I was getting by on a meager grad student stipend. I lived very frugally and put money into bikes I wanted and rode like crazy. I also needed a lifetime sport at that point, after burning out on my previous sporting pursuits. I can’t even begin to quantify what cycling, and this Community, have meant to me. I sure as hell don’t know what I’d do with my free time and free mental space if it wasn’t riding, talking, and loving bicycles. I ride avidly and daily, both for fun and fitness and to get around. Additionally, I haven’t owned a car since I got hooked on the sport in the early aughts. I might have a whole bunch of bikes, but they still add up to only a modest automobile. And I don’t buy petrol. And I don’t pay for insurance. And I’m not sitting in a car in traffic, I’m pedaling. Many people probably spend $5 a day on fancy drinks, maybe 8-$10 on lunch, etc. Add that up and I’d rather avoid those and buy a kick ass bike to ride. Life is about choices and I choose to be a Follower. I have a neighbor who has two Mercedes in his driveway and rides a department store bike. Makes no sense to me, but hey, he puts his money towards what he values. I’m not fabulously wealthy, but I’m happy to spend my disposable income on something very important to me.

    Anyway, maybe you just meant that in jest. But, the Rule is kinda in jest and you’re talking to serious cycling enthusiasts. I’m completely modest and frugal in the rest of my life, but when it comes to bicycles, I take pride and joy in Looking Fantastic and riding awesome machines.

    THIS x100. i haven’t owned a car or truck for 17+ years. that this is still not practical for every cyclist nowadays is evident, but things are improving all the time. not suffering the costs of ownership has afforded me and my family a much higher standard of living, and a GREAT education for my children. i haven’t even owned many bikes during this time, but anybody with a basic grasp of arithmetic and the inclination can quickly compute how many Pegorettis and Nags one can purchase for the cost of a new sedan.

    A few things, Cary. Yep, not owning a car has put what I’ve spent on bikes in perspective. Even though I’ve spent quite a bit, still not like buying, maintaining, and insuring a car. And yep, I don’t think you MUST have a slew of nice bikes, but I don’t think anyone should feel guilty for owning, loving, and riding pretty bicycles.

    I completely understand car free isn’t for everyone. I count my blessings daily that I can bike to work on a MUP and live in a city where cycling is pretty accessible and not horribly dangerous (though not great). I know this isn’t an option for all. With that said, I do very much wish more series type A roadies would get on a bike when it’s not training ride day. If you are okay riding hundreds of kilometers all over the place, surely you can make commuting to the store or work a reality. THIS is somewhere I think roadies can evolve as U.S. cities get more dense. I know a few dudes who only ride to race/train and drive everywhere else. I’m not preachy, but hell, if you can keep one more chugging engine off the roads, why not? I’m also extremely lucky with where we bought our house. I can walk my son to school when he’s old enough. After that school, I can bike him to the next one. A neighbor rides his daughter in daily in a trailer. How cool!

    As a little aside, I live around the corner from a major top notch university. They bill themselves as green and have a world-renown environmental school. On a daily basis I see undergrads living in a shared house emerge one by one and drive solo to campus, which you can throw a rock and hit. NOT KIDDING. I think to myself, “So this is the next generation? The ones I entrust the environment to? The ones at a green university and a top flight one?” It’s depressing.

    for much of my ’20s, i had convinced myself that i was cycling as some kind of crusade to conserve environmental resources, limit pollution, etc.  somewhere around 30-32 years of age, i realized that i was bullshitting myself.  i cycle:  a) because it’s fun, b) because i’m cheap, c) because i appreciate the aesthetics and elegant superiority of bike transportation.  that’s pretty much it.  in so many other aspects of life, i’m a wasteful lout like everybody else.  the world moves so fast, especially now, i just can’t make my life work without wasteful modern conveniences like take out food and bottled water.  if not owning a car for nearly two decades helps the world, so much the better, but i’m mostly too busy trying to help me and mine to pay too much attention to that.

  26. one GREAT thing that i’ve noticed over the last 20 years, is the increase in the prevalence and utility of bike lanes.  there are HUGE swaths of my city where i can just ride down the middle of the street at 35kph without a care in the world, and i’m not alone.  the motorists have gotten used to this, too, by and large.  it’s really kind of paradise around here, compared to 20 years ago.  as the world gets more crowded, bikes just make too much practical sense for people to ignore them as a viable alternative.  i think demographic and economic pressures will succeed in greening the world where idealism has basically failed thus far.

  27. @MangoDave

    My wife has a decent Trek aluminum bike, but doesn’t think hers should be better than mine. That said, I decided to upgrade the components from Tiagra to Ultegra from an “organ donor” Bianchi I picked up, which caused some cascading. I was going to sell the Bianchi frame, but it turned into a build project, still piecing it together with Campa. (It’s just wrong to get rid of a perfectly good celeste Bianchi, after all.)

    There’s no way she will ever agree to ignore/not count my MTBs. Plus, I spent many years racing and have a long history with them, so they’re getting included in the list here.

    #1 Pegoretti custom team with Record

    #2 Somec with Super Record, early ’80s

    #3 Somec with C-Record/Deltas, circa 1990

    #4 Kuota Kross carbon CX with Dura Ace for gravel grinders

    #5 Fat Chance Yo! Eddy steel hardtail

    #6 Bontrager Titanium hardtail

    #7 Turner full suspension mtb

    #8 Motobecane single speed for commuting/restaurant hopping (cheaper than homeowner insurance deductible that I can leave locked up and not worry)

    #9 Bianchi frame/build project, may replace #8

    I’m with @Buck Rogers, I’m leaning towards a Jaegher for my next bike, but that won’t happen for a while.

    Pegoretti…

    Sorry, had to clean up my drool.

  28. I have just started riding again back in July. But my n+1 thus far:

    1) 2003 Pinarello Prince Dura Ace

    2) Capricorn (local frame builder) in process of being built with Chorus and Honjo fenders for my winter bike

    3) Commissioned a Harbinger (another local frame builder) to be built with Record to replace current #1

    4) ’85 Specialized Stumpjumper made into a commuter for my lock down in town ride

     

  29. 1. Parlee Z5i Full Record 11.

    2.Pegoretti Responsorium Chiavete Paint. Full Record 11.

    3.Cherubim Uli. Full Dura Ace 9000.

    4.Norco Indy Drop. Full Fenders. 105 Group. Disc .

    5.Rossi 10 Speed. Downtube Shifters.

    1. 2014 Cinelli Saetta Radical Plus, 2015 Chorus (but might be getting me some Super Record EPS if the stars align)
    2. 2013 Kona Jake the Snake. Converted into a rain bike, no one would buy it, as it doesn’t have disks. Got it new for a song
    3. Bianchi Super Pista. Will self destruct if it turns left
    4. Felt TK3. Won as a prize. Hipster’d up, daily driver with a bell and brake.
    5. 1997 Vitali steel, Campagnolo Veloce 8 speed. Recently restored, rarely ridden

    Maybe one of these days I’ll get back into MTB, but Ms. BONE isn’t too keen on more bikes. Throwing CX tires on the Jake is plenty good fun for the most part.

  30. @TBONE

    1. ……..
    2. Bianchi Super Pista. Will self destruct if it turns left
    3. ………

    err………….would that be a southern hemisphere coriolis effect?

  31. Word, living in Canberra is odd: the Green party regularly shares power in local government, there’s bike lanes everywhere, but it’s a munted city where having a car makes life so much easier. For all it’s got going for it, Canberra has literally unlimited urban sprawl – its the defining feature of the city. Food miles, particularly are terrible because it is surrounded by not very productive farmland, and all the food has to be trucked in, making food prices very susceptible to price changes in the cost of fuel.
    I do ride everywhere, and I’m definitely in the minority here, I’ll see a handful of cyclists out and about compared to other cities. I am pretty buzzed on myself that I don’t drive everywhere, that I ride and commute as much as possible, in terms of keeping cars off the roads, but the climate here is pretty dreadful for cycling and I don’t blame anyone for not wanting to do it. I’ve never bought a car, I’ve always lived in cities (Canberra excepted) where owning one was either not necessary or a waste of money, and hate driving.
    As such, I have very ugly commuters that are the heroes of the $ per km equation, and nice expensive road bikes that sit for days at a time till it’s their turn for crib night/sunday best/track racing.

  32. @Gianni

    Related to the Bella in the photo, that paint job and “Bella” on the downtube were all a result of me having it repainted and the original decals no longer being available. I tried to reproduce them but they looked like crap so the painter added the Bella himself. I’m about to repaint the frame again and after despairing the lack of a proper head badge decal I found a guy on Etsy who makes some amazing personalized etched metal head badges. I’m getting one of these!

    Baboom, Etsy. This is a re-imagining of the original decal head badge, with some v-cogs chucked in there. That was the easy part, now to do everything else a recently sandblasted frame requires. This is brushed and polished nickel. What a deal.

  33. So my wife changed to Ultegra Di2 on her SLR01, leaving me a nice SRAM Red22 bro-set to play with. All I needed was a frame and bars, and a new #2 was born. So, in order of use:

    #1 BMC SLR01 with Red22

    #2 BMC SL01 (slow one) Al with Red22

    #3 Giant Trinity C1 with Ultegra and Red22

    #4 Giessauf 531SL with Nuovo Record (1983)

    #5 Avanti ventura cheapie hardtail MTB/commuter

  34. @Ron

    I completely understand car free isn’t for everyone. I count my blessings daily that I can bike to work on a MUP and live in a city where cycling is pretty accessible and not horribly dangerous (though not great). I know this isn’t an option for all. With that said, I do very much wish more series type A roadies would get on a bike when it’s not training ride day. If you are okay riding hundreds of kilometers all over the place, surely you can make commuting to the store or work a reality. THIS is somewhere I think roadies can evolve as U.S. cities get more dense. I know a few dudes who only ride to race/train and drive everywhere else. I’m not preachy, but hell, if you can keep one more chugging engine off the roads, why not? I’m also extremely lucky with where we bought our house. I can walk my son to school when he’s old enough. After that school, I can bike him to the next one. A neighbor rides his daughter in daily in a trailer. How cool!

    This – I can’t believe people I work with don’t cycle in. There are a few of us who do but I’m the only one who does it every day. Traffic into and out of the city is awful and getting worse – cycling is just so quick and easy.

    I happily commute to my other office in the next city (20-25ks away), and when I tell people this they look at me like I’ve just fallen from a spaceship. “You cycle all the way? What about when it rains? You cycle in the rain??!”.

    I want to tell them that’s not the hard part – the hard part is going home the long way and doing threshold training efforts all the way, with rucksack. In the rain.

     

  35. Great article, very engagingly written.  My favorite line:”And you better have a bike when visiting your parents.”  Too true, all too true.   Nice insight, @gianni .

    #1: Parlee Z5 SLi (2014) with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2

    #1b: Parlee Z5 SLi (2012 NOS frame purchased 2015) with Ultegra Di2.

    #3: Pinarello Prince (2008) with Campy Records 11s, BoB paint

    #4: Santa Cruz Bronson (2014) with SRAM XX1, 150mm travel trail bike

    #5: YT Capra (2016) with SRAM XO1, 180/170mm enduro bike

    #6: Trek Session 88 (2015) DH bike

    #7: YT Tues (2016) DH bike

    #8: Borealis Yampa (2014) fat tire bike

    Next bike up: a gravel bike.  I had a Merlin Extralight (1998) was my #1 till the Pinarello.  It was made my commuter / rain bike, but sold this year.  Likely to be replaced by a gravel bike that I can use for commuting too.

     

  36. I have to disagree with the above held theorm of n+1 or any other number!

    Cycling through the ages has been an activity led by those in our society, who whilst might aspire to affluence, sadly led a life living around effluent.

    Therefore my hypothesis is that Rule #12 should be N=N.

    if you own a said device that, by the judgement of the comman man, is a device that is propelled by human power with two wheels (clause i and ii allowing for stabilisers for the future generation) that you therefore are compliant with the rule.

  37. @RobSandy

    This – I can’t believe people I work with don’t cycle in. There are a few of us who do but I’m the only one who does it every day. Traffic into and out of the city is awful and getting worse – cycling is just so quick and easy.

    I happily commute to my other office in the next city (20-25ks away), and when I tell people this they look at me like I’ve just fallen from a spaceship. “You cycle all the way? What about when it rains? You cycle in the rain??!”.

    I want to tell them that’s not the hard part – the hard part is going home the long way and doing threshold training efforts all the way, with rucksack. In the rain.

    Yup, I don’t mind commuting in rain or bad weather. At this point, I’m so unused to driving that parking, dealing with aggressive/lawless motorists, waiting in traffic, etc. is much, much worse than cycling in cold rain. My body & brain are now attuned to the fact that we’re constantly moving closer to our destination; sitting in traffic drives me bonkers.

    And my city is booming, to my displeasure. (I don’t like big cities, showy folks, etc.) The only upside is that traffic density is going to force more cyclists and hopefully better cycling infrastructure.

     

  38. @Ron

     

    And my city is booming, to my displeasure. (I don’t like big cities, showy folks, etc.) The only upside is that traffic density is going to force more cyclists and hopefully better cycling infrastructure.

    Same round here – loads of the green space on the outskirts of the city is going to be filled in with new houses but there is absolutely no space for new roads, or even improving the existing ones. The result is going to be gridlock. Me and the wife both work within 7kms of our workplace in the City Centre though and walking distance to my little boy’s school so we wont mind!

  39. I found out that although I am the CFO of the household, the CEO is often very interested in the budget and tries to enthusiastically scan the bank statement when it lands on the mat for any statistical anomalies.

    Thankfully, she isn’t that adept at separating dozens of 2 digit values from almost endless direct debits, and gets distracted by her groceries credit-card, registering nearly a monkey every month. For this reason any paypal transaction less than 3 figures is almost invisible. I have been known to split wiggle orders based on value alone to “make the boxes smaller” as far as she knows. It also helps if I sell things to fill up the buffer on paypal from time to time.

    Resultingly;

    1. Eddy Merckx EMX-1 (frameset only) from a LBS, fitted with NOS Campagnolo Athena 11sp, last of the Ultra-torque, Ultra-shifts, rolling on Zondas and Corsas
    2. Dolan Prefissio nine bike (also frameset) with the trickled down NOS Campy Veloce 10sp, new hoods, but again Ultra-torque, ultra-shift.
    3. On-One 27.5er, There’s a pattern here; frameset  SRAM x5/9 mashup with 4pot brakes
    4. The guilty-secret commuter, a “heavily modified” 700c hybrid bike (Dawes Discovery) with a e-hub in the front wheel, which really really annoys my colleague who thinks it’s cheating. (although in my defence, I had a nasty accident 6 months ago, and cracked ribs, wrist and hip were not going to make me drive to work, just to do a 20minute ride, to get no parking space every damn day)
    5. Her bike, the specialized allez with 105. when my chorus/record/super upgrade plan kicks in, that load of pish is going on eBay.
  40. I would like to raise a point of order, and theorise that the equation should be N=N which correctly describes the origin of the activity of cycling.

    Often a pastime of the playthings, in early days, a form of transport, much as it is today, for those in society less fortunate. Whilst we covet N+1 in reality N=N is the statement that best describes what is important to cycling and it’s bearers of the rules. That is, you own a bike, welcome with all our hearts.

  41. @RobSandy

    @Ron

    And my city is booming, to my displeasure. (I don’t like big cities, showy folks, etc.) The only upside is that traffic density is going to force more cyclists and hopefully better cycling infrastructure.

    Same round here – loads of the green space on the outskirts of the city is going to be filled in with new houses but there is absolutely no space for new roads, or even improving the existing ones. The result is going to be gridlock. Me and the wife both work within 7kms of our workplace in the City Centre though and walking distance to my little boy’s school so we wont mind!

    It’s only my adopted city (my wife is local) and I’m angry about it. My friends who grew up here are beyond outrage. No, I don’t want to live in a depressed city, but it was perfectly fine how it was. We’re only around 35 kms from the state capital, which is a big city. Now our modest city is just getting ruined at a wild pace. Two new upscale hotels are going in, three new condos have been built, two more just announced. I have no idea where the people and jobs are going to come from! I kind of live in a bubble because I walk and bike everywhere and pretty much do the same thing week in and week out (work M-F, play soccer twice a week, ride my bike to work, ride on Sundays). Every time I go somewhere in the city I don’t frequent, there is a new condo or building going up. It’s nuts. Never, ever did I imagine I’d see insane gentrification before my eyes. Our property taxes just jumped like mad. Home prices are sky rocketing. It’s bonkers. We used to have a quiet little farmers market on Saturdays. Now a huge, gaudy condo looms on either side and transplants drive the walking distance so they can park their Audis out front.

    There is no way this is sustainable. But, like you, my own silver lining is that my walking/biking can’t be influenced that much. Getting out of the city for training rides is another story.

  42. #1 2009 Bianch 928 C2C (the swoopy one) with 10 s ultegra rolling on ksyrims in the winter and american classic 420 aero3s when i want to go fast(er)

    #1.1 1988 Miyata 512 rebuilt with 9-speed dura ace dt shifters and sante everything else (to match the pearl white frame).  wheels are hand built by a friend OpenPros laced to 5800 hubs.

    I put most of my miles on the miyata

    #3 1988 Panasonic dx-5000 with tricolore groupsan, wolbers

    #4 1992 schwinn circuit with mostly suntour superbe components. Wolber rims

    #5 early 80s Cilo made with vitus bonded aluminum tubes and groupsan 600 (presently for sale… i want a touring/cross bike)

    #6 1992 Burley duet tandem with suntour parts.  This is the most fun bike I own

    #7 2011 K2 Base 1.0 rebuilt with mostly XT parts and actual shocks

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