Equipment – where do you get the most bang for your buck?


Reinhold said it best and I do thank you sir for writing that “Legends of Lycra Part:2” for me in my absence. What was revealed in the second installment of the LOL (legends of lycra) was an accumulation and affirmation of my preconceived notions re: this all too popular following in the XC world. I have to say it was draining. I can confidently tell you readers that I have never had less fun riding my bike as I did over the weeks spent riding with those guys and gals. Take this ridiculous bib and spandex short onesy and kill it, kill it with fire. I never want to see it again.

But alas, I digress. I’m not writing today to reiterate what has already been said multiple times. If you’ve read this blog from front to back you’ll know that we really don’t like spandex and the attitude it seems to carry with it. I’m sure you’ve heard enough about that for now so let’s focus on a different subject: Equipment.

While riding with the enemy I could not tell you how many times I heard complaints, reviews, tweaks, accolades, excuses, the history of this part and that part and the weight of this screw vs. that one MAN! These guys know their parts I’ll give them that, but it was exhausting. There was one guy in particular who was so obsessed about the weight of his bike that he replaced the spindles in his pedals to a titanium version. $100 later and he saved 11g…winning? The funniest part to me was that nobody said anything about that being a ridiculous purchase, quite the contrary really, a few even asked where he got them….are ya kidding me!?!?

I’ve upgraded some parts over my time in this sport; any avid rider is going to at some point. Whether it is out of necessity or pure consumerism, there is more than a ridiculous amount of after market parts available. It can be quite the mission trying to determine what the next purchase will be. A seat? Handle bars? Pedals?  The list goes on and on and on. But I suppose that’s just the name of the game. We all want our bikes to look cool and perform well and there is certainly a market to warrant this kind of saturation. But if upgrading your bike is not something you’re all that interested in, there are tons of off the shelf bikes that tote really nice load outs. Now to get a solid drive train and the like you will have to be willing to shell out a modest amount. What’s a modest amount? I’d say $1400 for a hard tail, $2000 for a full suspension that’s where you start. Don’t feel bad if you simply can’t afford something like that, lesser models will give you a hell of a bang for your buck you just may want to upgrade a few key pieces as you get more into the sport.

What do you guys think? Is there a “best part” to upgrade on your bike for the budding enthusiasts out there? My favorite upgrade has been my pedals, I switched to Crank Brothers Egg Beaters when I got my 1st “higher end” bike and I absolutely love them! Let us where you’ve seen the most bang for your buck, what piece can you no longer live without?





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