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Will bikes become seriously collectible and if so, which ones?

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Will bikes become seriously collectible and if so, which ones?

Old 11-10-22, 10:29 AM
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ljsense
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Will bikes become seriously collectible and if so, which ones?

When I look at cool old bikes and bike parts, some of the rare stuff has basically held its value against inflation or a little better, but I don't see that many examples of cycling equipment taking off in value the way old cars and other stuff has.

In the U.S. bike racing got traction in the 1970s and 80s and again surged in the 2000s. The 70s and 80s stuff is modestly collectible, but still for the most part basically affordable for enthusiasts. Maybe the 2000s era surge will produce way higher values as people around my age get too old to race anymore but want their dream race bike or favorite components on display somewhere.

People pay millions of dollars for old sports cars, baseball cards. Is it unreasonable to think that a mint condition 7800 Dura Ace crankset won't be worth more than $10,000 someday?

What bikes or bike parts do you think will become the most collectible?

To get things going, here are a few on my list:

Late 90s Merlin Extralight frames

Full mechanical rim brake Dura Ace from 7400 all the way through 9100. 7700 and the 9000 are the prettiest.

Made in USA Treks, especially the Tour bikes. 2016-17 rim brake H1 Madone 9 as the pinnacle.

Any of the US boutique brands -- Indy Fab, Vanilla, Allied, Parlee, etc., etc.

The counter argument is that the cycling industry continues to make better products, so it limits a collector's market. But lately it seems like there is a significant gap growing in how today's bikes operate, look and feel. If enough people want full mechanical and rim brakes on an all out race bike, maybe the collector's market finally starts to really take off.
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Old 11-10-22, 10:33 AM
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Isn't there already a vintage bike scene?
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Old 11-10-22, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Isn't there already a vintage bike scene?
When I think of collectible vintage bikes, the 7-Eleven team Serottas come to mind, and they can be found for around the same price as a new race bike.

Maybe a few of them, like one raced by Andy Hampsted or something, goes for more than $10,000, but again that's not out of the range of modern race bikes.

Meanwhile, a Mercedes 300SL goes for several million dollars despite being slower than many Honda Civics.
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Old 11-10-22, 11:05 AM
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Original Hutch and Cook Brothers BMX bikes routinely fetch thousands, but in general I think buying bicycles as an investment is foolish.
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Old 11-10-22, 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Isn't there already a vintage bike scene?

...if only there were a dedicated forum for that.
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Old 11-10-22, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by ljsense View Post
Meanwhile, a Mercedes 300SL goes for several million dollars despite being slower than many Honda Civics.
People aren’t buying these sorts of things because of performance. If they are even driven, they probably have to be driven conservatively (to maintain value).

People buy them because they are rare and can easily be shown-off (they are a marker of wealth).

Many more people understand “expensive car” than “expensive bicycle”.
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Old 11-10-22, 11:35 AM
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All the good bikes will be Non-Fungible Tokens. 'Cause - clearly this week - digital assets are where it's at, baby.
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Old 11-10-22, 11:52 AM
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In order for something to be widely collectable, there has to have been mass interest in that thing at one point. Back around 1972-74 there was a road bike boom in the US that popularized adult road bikes (ie. '10 speed' bikes). From the mid 70's to mid 80's BMX bikes were the big thing. Then mountain bikes burst onto the scene from around 1984 and took over the whole bike market until ~2000.. Road bikes had a renaissance from about 1999 and on (in the US) , mostly due to Lance Armstrong. If you're interesting in collecting you would aim for a Schwinn Paramount from the early 70's, a BMX bike from the late 70's or early 80's; a mountain bike from the mid-late 80's. A USPS livery Trek bike from the 90's and 2000's, etc...
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Old 11-10-22, 11:56 AM
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I don't see any crank (or any handlebar, saddle, or wheel set) ever selling for tens of thousands of dollars as a collectible. I could be wrong. The way inflation is going, $10,000 might soon be not a lot of money. Certainly some very rare, special, and exotic bikes will command high prices in the future, just as they do when new. But I doubt bike stuff generally will ever be as collectible as vintage sports cars or baseball cards.

I agree with those who say it's foolish to buy bikes and components as an investment.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:06 PM
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Get some kind of limited edition NOS bike made by a brand that has some appeal, and the price may go bonkers.

Try this one for an investment.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/124938130580

All for the bargain price of $50,000



I do think that one has been on E-Bay for a while, and I thought the asking price was closer to
$100K. So this could be a real discount value. You should snap it up.

But, don't ever ride it. And don't let anybody touch it.

One scratch, and your $50K bike will be worth $5K.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:06 PM
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The answer to all your questions are on the interwebs, like this one: https://www.antiquetrader.com/collec...ntage-bicycles

Just like with vintage cars and motorcycles, you want to find, limited production, hand-built and most likely European. The more exotic the better. Mass production bikes will never command money. Itís tough to predict which will or will not appreciate significantly at this point since most collectors already know the market and have already purchased the highly desirable bikes.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:13 PM
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Like cars, very few bikes themselves become collectable and increase in value. If you can find one that is associated with a race, or/and maybe a famous cyclist, then it'll have some added value. Other than that nothing beyond the original MSRP.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by ljsense View Post
Is it unreasonable to think that a mint condition 7800 Dura Ace crankset won't be worth more than $10,000 someday?
The thing that has been going bonkers is the Campagnolo 50th Anniversary Edition Group Sets. With documentation, and in the original box. NOS.



https://www.ebay.com/itm/255765734453

Prices vary a bit, but I think they went up by a couple thousand in the last few years. Quite a few of them keep popping up on E-Bay.

I'm seeing prices from $4300 up to about $6400.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:16 PM
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As someone mentioned, bmx seems to be where it's at. They've commanded high prices for years. Maybe the bottom will fall out, maybe not.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by skidder View Post
Like cars, very few bikes themselves become collectable and increase in value. If you can find one that is associated with a race, or/and maybe a famous cyclist, then it'll have some added value. Other than that nothing beyond the original MSRP.
I buy most of what I get used. Some things have appreciated some.

If I had never ridden my old Colnago Super, and always kept it in a dry climate controlled room. Then it might have tripled in value by now.

But, then again, I've enjoyed it for 40 years now. And it was over a dozen years old when I got it.

I don't regret riding it for decades rather than keeping it locked away somewhere. I got more than my 300,000 Lira investment out of it.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
The thing that has been going bonkers is the Campagnolo 50th Anniversary Edition Group Sets. With documentation, and in the original box. NOS.



https://www.ebay.com/itm/255765734453

Prices vary a bit, but I think they went up by a couple thousand in the last few years. Quite a few of them keep popping up on E-Bay.

I'm seeing prices from $4300 up to about $6400.
Yeah, that's a good example of the 70s to 80s riders who went on to have wealth chasing the dream group of their racing days.

Granted, a lot of cyclists from that era (and other eras!) are just ne'er do well weirdos who aren't going to have the money to drive up the value of anything. They're well represented on this forum.

But in the last 10 or 15 years, people who would have played golf in the past now race bikes. They are more normal people. People who run companies and accumulate wealth. My guess is that at some point some cycling stuff will become valuable, like a post on this forum that is conversational and intelligent.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:31 PM
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Those box sets turned out to appreciate as you could imagine they would being European and limited and Campagnolo, but if you put in the same money in a S&P index fund in 1983, you would have made thrice than buying a Campagnolo box set.

Buying bikes is a lot of fun, but as an investment... maybe used steel on the cheap and refurbishing it. Or something which has been raced by someone famous... maybe. Right now ex pro bikes are discounted compared to new, being used items.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:32 PM
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I wouldn't collect bicycles to make money I would collect bicycles to ride them. Sure would I love to own Eddy Merckx's Track Bike from the Hour Record, yeah but I would rather it be where it is so more people can enjoy it. I wouldn't ride it, I couldn't ride it, it is such an important bike as it was one of the last true Hour Records before it got into super aero shapes and disc wheels and such and still had only gotten a a little bit better than Merckx. I mean Voight (the first one under the 2014 UCI rule change) hit under 1.7kms more than Merckx did in 1972. Now they are doing better but minimally and most of that is the technology pushing it forward and having these different positions with these tri bikes.

Bikes are about riding, collecting for display is for museums.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:33 PM
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In the vintage things game, if you want to make money, you do it on the buy.

Paying market rate for high quality, high condition is part of collecting. To make money at this, you have to buy at below market.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:34 PM
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A lot of collectors are middle age individuals who have strong nostalgic attachment to items which they aspired to own in their youth but were unable to afford. Now as a personal reward they are acquiring these items. Thus the strong desire for the usual 70ís and 80ís race bikes which end in a vowel. As these people die off so will the demand. Basements and garages are littered with top end bikes of every era as they rarely get destroyed. Just look how many Masi Gran Criteriums there are available at any given point.

Last edited by Atlas Shrugged; 11-10-22 at 12:39 PM.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:37 PM
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Go look at C+V. All the guys will brag about getting a bike for $40. What does that indicate?? LOL.
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Old 11-10-22, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Get some kind of limited edition NOS bike made by a brand that has some appeal, and the price may go bonkers.

Try this one for an investment.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/124938130580

All for the bargain price of $50,000



I do think that one has been on E-Bay for a while, and I thought the asking price was closer to
$100K. So this could be a real discount value. You should snap it up.

But, don't ever ride it. And don't let anybody touch it.

One scratch, and your $50K bike will be worth $5K.
I'd buy it, but they want $450 for shipping, which is a ripoff.
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Old 11-10-22, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
...since most collectors already know the market and have already purchased the highly desirable bikes.
...if you are young enough, you can just wait for those guys to die. Their wives will dump all those bikes over in one corner of the garage estate sale.
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Old 11-10-22, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
...if you are young enough, you can just wait for those guys to die. Their wives will dump all those bikes over in one corner of the garage estate sale.
Like the wife who put her late husbandís mint early 911 for sale for $1500 (which was worth 6 figures)
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Old 11-10-22, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
...if you are young enough, you can just wait for those guys to die. Their wives will dump all those bikes over in one corner of the garage estate sale.
After I die, I hope someone will help my wife sell my bikes and guns for what they're worth, not what she thinks I paid.
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