The Cost of Bicycling

I wrote in an earlier post that my Trek 1000 is now 5 years old. I love this bike. Actually, I love both my bikes. I’ve ridden this bike about 15,000 miles since I bought it, and that’s a conservative estimate. 15,000 miles of training, fun rides, commuting and now racing. However, mileage this high is not without it’s wear and tear on the hardware.

Since I’ve owned this bike, I’ve replaced the following items due to wear or unexpected damage.

Tire Tubes = At least 25 ($4 each)
Tires = 7 ($10-$25 each)
Wheels = 3 (~$80)
Handlebar Tape = 6 ($4 each)
Brake Pads = 8 (4 sets, $12 a set)
Brake Calipers = 2 ($30 each)
Saddles = 1 ($55)
Rear Cassettes = 2 ($30 each)
Crank Arms = 1 ($15)
Spokes = 1 ($1)
Reflectors = 3 ($2 each)
Bike Computers = 2 ($20 each)

All these components aren’t too expensive on their own, but over time they are adding up to cost more than what I’ve paid for the bike.

It has also come to my attention that soon, I will have to replace the following parts or have them over-hauled.

Headset $30 (rust & sand)
Bottom Bracket $50 (contaminated bearings?)
Rear Derailer $45 (bent)
Brake Cables & Housing $10 (worn housing, slight rust)
Derailer Cables and Housing $10 (worn & damaged housing, rust)
Front Hub $0~$70(contamination)
Rear Hub $0~$80 (wear, contamination)
Wheel Truing $0~$? (wear, damage)
Crankset with Chainrings $150

It’s still quite ridable, but if I want to keep it riding, these parts need to be addressed. If I ever somehow crack the frame, then it will be time to retire that bike.

However, even after all these costs, it’s still much cheaper than paying for anything on my car. Guess it’s quite the financial incentive to keep riding rather than drive.

Join the Conversation


  1. The satisfaction of knowing your bike is worth more than your neighbor’s car: priceless.For everything else, there’s feltercarb.

  2. What exactly d’ye mean by ‘contamination’? The mind boggles (slightly).

  3. Contamination: Dirt, grim, sand in areas with ballbearings…this is HIGHY undesirable. Contaminated parts wear out faster.

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