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One bike vs multiple bikes?

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One bike vs multiple bikes?

Old 01-03-17, 10:58 AM
  #51  
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I couldn't imagine ever having 2 identical bikes. That would seem pointless to me. I would have to sell it in order to get something different that was more suited to a different purpose.
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Old 01-03-17, 11:03 AM
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Old 01-03-17, 12:06 PM
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Wondering how many of you don't have another way to get to work aside from your bike(s)?

It's pretty easy for me to catch a train after a mile walk to the station. I'm sure there's a bus that would take me there if I bothered to check.

So for me a "backup bike" is a nice thing to have but not really a necessity. There are weather conditions that I won't ride in too. It may not happen in a given year but I really need to have another way to get to work besides a bike.

By the same token, lots of people who drive to work manage to get there if their car is in for service or whatever.
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Old 01-03-17, 12:13 PM
  #54  
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My wife is not a bike commuter, and even she has three bikes. She and I do short trips on Citi Bike.
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Old 01-03-17, 12:15 PM
  #55  
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Originally Posted by tjspiel View Post
Wondering how many of you don't have another way to get to work aside from your bike(s)?
i have a somewhat easy transit option to get to work if don't ride one of my bikes (it involves a bus to train transfer, which can be annoying if the timing doesn't jive), but riding one of my bikes is still loads more fun than waiting for and riding the bus/train, so i like to bike as much as possible.

additionally, my wife works from home the vast majority of the time, so our lone family car usually sits in the garage collecting dust most days, which makes it a legitimate alternate most of the time, but riding one of my bikes is still loads more fun than driving in chicago's craptacular rush-hour traffic, so i like to bike as much as possible.

even though i have other options for getting to work, i still like having multiple bikes for back-up and winter duties. i could certainly get by with one bike, but as i said earlier in the thread, i just love the convenience of having multiple bikes, particularly for winter when conditions for studded vs. non-studded tires often change on a daily basis. i could switch out tires or wheelsets during the winter like i used to in the bad old days, but i don't see why i would want to do that when i can easily afford to own and store more than one bike.

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Old 01-03-17, 12:17 PM
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One bike w an extra wheels set is nice.
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Old 01-03-17, 12:23 PM
  #57  
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I always wanted two bikes minimum when I was an everyday commuter. One "primary" bike and a second "winter/rain/something's wrong with the primary bike" one. The last thing I wanted when I'd get up in the morning to go was to find a flat and have to think about fixing that and being late; and though the primary bike would be ridden in the rain when rain was unexpected, primarily dry riding extended the lifetime and maintenance intervals on the primary bike.
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Old 01-03-17, 12:25 PM
  #58  
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I have a couple of options. It's roughly 4 miles. I could walk but I'm too lazy. I could take public transit but I'm too impatient and antisocial. I could drive but I'm too cheap.
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Old 01-03-17, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
wonder if any bike commuter ever had 2 identical bikes, meaning 2 exactly the same. brand, model, year, saddle, tires, etc
Some of the roadies seem to think they need a cheap bike to use all the time and another more expensive one that they keep for special occasions. I don't really get it, it seems like a bike that is up to the demands of racing should also be more tolerant of normal use.
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Old 01-03-17, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
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Old 01-03-17, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
You should have enough bikes to fill the available storage space.
But what happens when you figure out a more efficient way to store your bikes?

I used to have seven bikes hanging along the wall in my garage that my wife and I agreed would be allotted to bike storage. These bikes pretty much filled the wall, and I felt like if I wanted to get a new bike I'd need to sell one of the others. Then last winter my wife asked if I would make room for her to store her newly purchased Harley on the bike side of the garage. I found a way to do it without having to sell any bikes. Shortly afterward she finally admitted she was never going to fix up the old Dodge Charger that was filling the other side of the garage, so we found a new home for that and she got that side of the garage for her Harley. Now I have 14 bikes.

This may see far afield of the original question, but I think it actually answers it. I have a house in the suburbs with a big garage. This alone leads to possessing an enormous amount of "stuff." Would I be happier with fewer things? Maybe. Probably. Almost certainly. But the bikes are no where near where I'd start.

If you live in a small apartment in the city and have already trimmed the fat from the rest of your life, by all means sell all but one bike. But that bike will have to be extremely versatile, entirely reliable and above all the bike itself will need to be simple enough for you to maintain without worries.

But if you live in a simple house in the country and have a good shed in the yard, why not own a couple of bikes? As others have noted, owning a second bike does avoid some very real problems.
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Old 01-03-17, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
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Old 01-03-17, 01:45 PM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Some of the roadies seem to think they need a cheap bike to use all the time and another more expensive one that they keep for special occasions. I don't really get it, it seems like a bike that is up to the demands of racing should also be more tolerant of normal use.
I think the issue is that one of the most important "demands of racing" is that the bike be in perfect working order with no bearings dragging, no brakes rubbing, no misalignment in the shifting system, etc. The surest way to keep a bike in this state is not to ride it.

But I think this goes beyond racing. Many of us want a bike that's in perfect working order that we can hop on a ride without a care. If a bike is only ridden in ideal conditions it's really easy to keep it running like that. Conversely, many of us also want a bike that we can abuse.

I've read people saying that you should wash your bike and clean the drivetrain after every rainy ride. Do you know how burdensome that would be in the PNW? I want a bike that I can take out and ride in any conditions and then just hang it on a hook when I get home and take it out for more of the same the next day. This takes a major toll on the drivetrain, but it makes my life a lot easier. My rain bike only gets maintenance when something is obviously wrong.

I used to have a "nice bike" and a "rain bike" because of this, but my "nice bike" was a cyclocross bike and when I actually took up cyclocross racing I discovered just how much abuse it could take. And since it rains almost every day nine months of the year here, it made sense for my "rain bike" to be a nice bike, so I made that change. My designated rain bike is now one of the nicest bikes I own. But I still have other bikes that I only ride in fair weather for the reasons stated above.
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Old 01-03-17, 01:49 PM
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I just recently built up a second fixed gear bike. I like having two because one can be my "vision" bike - it can be perfect for me, built for one purpose, and be one coherent build. My second bike is my "test" bike - I can try out new parts on it, experiment with different riding positions, and take it out to the bars without fretting about it getting stolen.
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Old 01-03-17, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Some of the roadies seem to think they need a cheap bike to use all the time and another more expensive one that they keep for special occasions. I don't really get it, it seems like a bike that is up to the demands of racing should also be more tolerant of normal use.
I wouldn't call it a cheap bike, but my old race bike has become my rain bike with fenders and lights and such. The old war horse has her fair share of scratches and dings but she still goes like hell. Ideally, I'd find a CX frame to build up as a rain/gravel/firetrail bike but it hasn't happened yet.
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Old 01-03-17, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
But what happens when you figure out a more efficient way to store your bikes?
N+1 happens.
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Old 01-03-17, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
N+1 happens.
Or in some case N*2.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by zubes5280 View Post
I just recently built up a second fixed gear bike. I like having two because one can be my "vision" bike - it can be perfect for me, built for one purpose, and be one coherent build. My second bike is my "test" bike - I can try out new parts on it, experiment with different riding positions, and take it out to the bars without fretting about it getting stolen.
Yep. That's how N+1 works. Once you have found a second configuration that's also perfect for some other purpose you'll need a third bike to be the "test" bike.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
I'd no sooner have a single bike than a single pair of shoes.
I would be ecstatic if I could get by with one bike (and one pair of shoes).

As it is, I have two bikes; my N-1 bike (commute, road, errands, etc) which is a CrossCheck with rack, lights, etc, and my hardtail, which is for trail riding.

I have come to the realization that (thankfully), I am not a "collector" by nature. I don't want to own a ton of different bikes, or watches, or vintage double-edge razors (or shaving brushes, or shaving soaps, or brands of DE blades), or knives, or etc etc etc.

Rather, I'd rather have one (or as few as possible) of good quality and value.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I think the issue is that one of the most important "demands of racing" is that the bike be in perfect working order with no bearings dragging, no brakes rubbing, no misalignment in the shifting system, etc. The surest way to keep a bike in this state is not to ride it.

But I think this goes beyond racing. Many of us want a bike that's in perfect working order that we can hop on a ride without a care. If a bike is only ridden in ideal conditions it's really easy to keep it running like that. Conversely, many of us also want a bike that we can abuse.

I've read people saying that you should wash your bike and clean the drivetrain after every rainy ride. Do you know how burdensome that would be in the PNW? I want a bike that I can take out and ride in any conditions and then just hang it on a hook when I get home and take it out for more of the same the next day. This takes a major toll on the drivetrain, but it makes my life a lot easier. My rain bike only gets maintenance when something is obviously wrong.

I used to have a "nice bike" and a "rain bike" because of this, but my "nice bike" was a cyclocross bike and when I actually took up cyclocross racing I discovered just how much abuse it could take. And since it rains almost every day nine months of the year here, it made sense for my "rain bike" to be a nice bike, so I made that change. My designated rain bike is now one of the nicest bikes I own. But I still have other bikes that I only ride in fair weather for the reasons stated above.
Fenders help of course. Full fenders keep spray off your chain ring. I'm becoming more of a believer in full-time fenders, they keep crap off your bike full time, not just water in the rain. My bike would have them IF my commute route did not include a nice fire trail that cuts off about a mile. I kept fenders on my bike in winter '14-15 and the front ate a twig on that road and folded on me. I haven't had them since but I've been thinking about it again because pretty much all the gunk on my bike comes from that one mile.

The bikes in my "quiver" are pretty different, not a dichotomy of better or worse, faster or tougher. I've got a cyclocross-frame commuter, a MTB, a 3-speed stepthrough with a toddler seat, and a C&V roadie. The latter gets ridden the least even though it has the nicest ride. I think mainly I leave it in the rack due to its short gearing, but it seems like that's part of its character.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:35 PM
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I'm a pretty minimalist person. Even so, I've found that two bikes works much better for me than one, reasons being:

*Theft deterrence. This was my original reason for getting a second bike. My primary bike is too nice to leave unattended, so I got a cheaper bike to use for trips where a public lockup is necessary.

*As a backup. In case of mechanical issues on one bike, I can quickly grab the other.

*Different types of riding/terrain. One bike is a multi-speed/mixed terrain/light touring bike, the other is a single speed city bike.

*Variable weather. One bike is outfitted for wet conditions and the other is for dry.

*Guest bike. On several occasions, visiting guests have used my second bike which made fun trips together possible.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:37 PM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
I would be ecstatic if I could get by with one bike (and one pair of shoes).

Rather, I'd rather have one (or as few as possible) of good quality and value.
The number of bikes you need depends in part on the type(s) of riding you do. My fat bike and road CF bike are polar opposites. Neither can adequately do what the other can. I have a coupled travel bike, which again is the only bike that fits in a suitcase. A couple other all around bikes fill in the middle of the range.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
The bikes in my "quiver" are pretty different, not a dichotomy of better or worse, faster or tougher. I've got a cyclocross-frame commuter, a MTB, a 3-speed stepthrough with a toddler seat, and a C&V roadie. The latter gets ridden the least even though it has the nicest ride. I think mainly I leave it in the rack due to its short gearing, but it seems like that's part of its character.
Same. Once you have more than a few bikes, the argument for keeping a beater becomes less compelling. I actually have two bikes right now that are significantly lower quality than the rest, but they'll find their way out the door as soon as I need the garage space.

Getting into C&V bikes has significantly accelerated my N+1 habit. When I was justifying the habit by saying that I wanted a commuter, a road bike, a mountain bike, a cyclocross bike, a singlespeed, etc. it seemed as if I would eventually find that I had a bike for every type of riding I did. But since getting into C&V I've found that I need an Italian bike, a French bike, an English bike, and on and on. And even before I've filled out the map, I can see that the day will come when I explore the distinctions between a Pinarello and a DeRosa or between a Motobecane and a Peugeot and so on. Eventually I'm going to need to move from the suburbs to the country just to get a bigger garage. Or maybe when my daughters are grown and out of the house my wife will let me use their rooms to store bikes.
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Old 01-03-17, 02:58 PM
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It gets really bad when you keep a bike at work just for errands and such.
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Old 01-03-17, 03:25 PM
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I don't know the count of my bikes. I do have 2 sitting for sale on CL right now. I have a project bike I eventually need to finish and list on CL, and a keeper project I want to finish up. I also want to add a folder to the collection, bc reasons. I have a proflex I keep thinking about stripping down and selling the frame, but they don't really bring in any money. I would like to reduce clutter, but really any money made from selling would go into new purchases - either parts to build up my Schwinn Prologue as a restomod, equal to my carbon bike, or towards a foldie or another vintage bike. Or putting a solid fork on my 29er and doing a drop bar conversion.
Either way, I like having a dedicated commuter. It's old, heavy, and always has fenders, racks, and bags on it. I don't wanna take all that on a group ride with friends. That's a lot of extra stuff to haul around. So I need a road bike as well (in my case, multiple ones - a modern CF, a nice vintage steel, and another nice vintage steel that will be modernized).

I also like to mountain bike, so I have a 29er I'm not very enamored with, a Proflex with a bum fork, and just got an old Stumpy, which I do love riding. I could be happy with just the stumpy here, but I would like to do different things to the 29er. It's bottom of the barrel in Cannondale's lineup for that year, but the frame is pretty darn nice and it has potential. I'll throw my CX bike into this category as well. just an old 1970s bike boom bike converted down to 700c wheels with knobby tires. Single speed.

Then I have my neighborhood/other bikes - one of which is a Raleigh 3 speed I leave at work to run errands or take to lunch, etc. Another is an old Schwinn Suburban I use to take to the neighborhood pool and back, or maybe o pick up Chinese food with. It has zero dollar value, and while it works very well mechanically, I still wouldn't want to donate it. Someone might get tetanus from just looking at it. This one tends to live on the covered front porch. Also in this category is my single speed/fixie hybrid. It fits well in the wife's Honda Fit, has to weigh somewhere around 15 pounds, and it a lot of fun riding around the city. I have it listed for sale, but am in no hurry at all to sell it.

I have some others, but they are trade bait/meant to sell.
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