On the way home from work on Friday evening, the gears at the rear of my mountain bike started to misbehave. Given that the front mech had seized about six months ago, I wasn’t entirely surprised. The bike has lasted well. It’s had two full services, where the axles, crank, and chain-set were replaced during it’s life. It has survived six miles a day, through all weathers, rain or shine, for the past six or seven years. The chain snapping this morning and falling to the road was really just the tipping point. I can’t complain. If I drove to work, the cost of running a car would dwarf the maintainance of the bike each year.
So what do I get next? In the past I have always chosen mountain bikes – and I’ve gone both the cheap, and the expensive route. A cheap bike tends to last a year before it falls to pieces and has to be replaced. An expensive bike (as with the last one) will easily last six or seven before the cost of servicing it will outstrip it’s worth.
If I go the cheap route (which may be dictated by lack of finances), I’ll almost certainly get something off-the-shelf from the local bike shop. There is also a more expensive route though – and it’s all Rachel’s fault, because before she posted on her (quite wonderful) blog about Pashley Bikes, I didn’t know they existed.
I guess the quirk in my make-up that likes 15 year old Apple Mac computers that still work has an affinity for well make bicycles that hark back to the bikes I remember from my youth. Indestructible bikes, made by hand – not by robots. The only problem is they tend to be twice as expensive as the bikes you or I might normally buy – but then the bike is my main mode of transport – I should perhaps invest a little money in making it a pleasure rather than a burden to use. Just the fact that they come with Brooks saddles tells me everything I need to know about them.
I don’t know what to do. I really don’t…Â