Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Talk about anything.

Moderators: Bearbonesnorm, Taylor, Chew

User avatar
Bearbonesnorm
Posts: 20076
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: my own little world

Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Sat Oct 31, 2020 10:43 am

Whenever I've built a bike up, I've always had one eye on the budget. Obviously, I've tried to attach nice components to it but that generally involves careful shopping, secondhand stuff where required and knowing where to best compromise. Anyway, I wondered if anyone had ever gone completely mad and built a no expense spared bike and also, did it live up to their expectations?
What value a life half lived if the half you lived was the wrong half?

User avatar
htrider
Posts: 3485
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 10:51 pm
Location: Fife
Contact:

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by htrider » Sat Oct 31, 2020 10:51 am

I was going to do the Jones like that but my natural tight-fisted-ness came to the rescue. So it got hope hubs, Thomson stem and seat pin and a few other fancy sundries but XT gears and SLX brakes. The differences between them and XTR are so marginal and yet price-wise XTR is so much more expensive I couldn't do it....

User avatar
ScotRoutes
Posts: 6779
Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:56 am
Location: Cairngorms
Contact:

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by ScotRoutes » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:00 am

I'm Scottish...

The nearest I got was my SC Blur Carbon. I bought and built that when I was working in a bike shop so got stuff at a decent discount.

As time, my riding, and bike developments moved on the investment in expensive parts soon got written off. Nowadays I'm happy with XT over XTR, 105 over Ultegra, etc. I also realised that some shiny stuff just isn't worth it, hence Shimano hubs instead of Hope.

redefined_cycles
Posts: 5319
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2016 8:19 am
Location: Dewsbury, West Yorkshire

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by redefined_cycles » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:01 am

Stu... Do it, I doubt you'll regret it.

I built the Stan (Sonder carbon Transmitter) like that * - obviously certain bits were the lower price point of things or else it'd have taken longer- and it's been lovely. There's a careful choosing process between 'highly priced' and 'high quality'.

Currently building the superlight commuter and stems gonna cost me about £130... Then next month I'll get the rims. Stem has been fatigue tested beyond standard specification/requirements and there's been no reported breakages (scpuring theforums) from this manufacturer.

Just take your time and concentrate on one item at a time but get the 'high qual' and not 'high priced'...

*Well, ok, some parts were a comppromise for the interim. But xtr cranks will come soon as will some better brakes and rims
Last edited by redefined_cycles on Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
voodoo_simon
Posts: 3034
Joined: Fri Apr 26, 2013 9:05 pm

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by voodoo_simon » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:02 am

In short, never! Always spend the money on the right frame but feel the components will always do the job they’re intended to do. Also, I don’t look after my gears (hence also having a singlespeed bike!), so it’s not worth me putting expensive mechs/shifters on.

Current mountain bike is carbon frame/carbon wheels etc but with basic SRAM 12 speed gears.

Singlespeed is an El Mariachi but with SLX brakes and about 18 year old cranks :shock:

Strangely enough, the only bikes that get nicer components are my road bikes (only taking 105 though) and I’m not worried about mechs getting smashed in rocks/roots :lol:

ton
Posts: 1573
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 9:53 am

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by ton » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:26 am

yes, a few times. on a few mtb's and on a tourer.
on my ventana el capitan, i ran Hope everything, with shimano saint brakes and xtr gering.
custom built wheels with Kris holm rims. thomson stuff. custom tuned shock.
it really was my ideal perfect bike.

i sold it in a fit of depression when poorly with my heart. wish i hadnt :sad: :sad:

on mtb's it is a pointless thing to do, as stuff gets hammered. on a tourer it is a good idea, as stuff lasts far longer.

infact i am considering doing it again to my tourer, to offset going ss on my mtb........ :-bd

Lazarus
Posts: 1810
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:49 am

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Lazarus » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:29 am

I think the problem is you end up at very marginal gains for relatively large spends

how much weight saving for that £130 stem for example?
If you factor this across all part you are going to be paying thousands for marginal gains

I would also rather have 4 decents bikes than one fantastic one

lune ranger
Posts: 1491
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:52 pm
Location: Peoples Republic of Devon

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by lune ranger » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:29 am

Twice both before kids and marriage (go figure!)
First was a full custom Thorn eXXp touring bike with S&S couplings, Rohloff, Royce BB and the full works top of the range heavy ass touring gear. Incredible machine for it’s intended purpose that crossed multiple continents with barely a tweek.
Second was a Teutonic dream bike - black and gold Nicolai Helius CC (think JPS F1 Lotus) dripping in Tune, Nokon, DT Pace forks, Crank Bros 4Ti eggbeater etc, etc. Incredible waste of money that barely crossed the Pennines without bits dropping off it.

ton
Posts: 1573
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 9:53 am

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by ton » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:39 am

you factor this across all part you are going to be paying thousands for marginal gains
when 'if you are a fat knacker' like me, you would be better taking a big dump and eating less pie.......... :lol:

redefined_cycles
Posts: 5319
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2016 8:19 am
Location: Dewsbury, West Yorkshire

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by redefined_cycles » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:41 am

Lazarus wrote:
Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:29 am

I would also rather have 4 decents bikes than one fantastic one
:smile: agreed... But my storage space is limited and this bike will see me to work and back (95ish mile round-trip commute the other day for just a £5.50 train ticket of 20 miles) so the investment pays me back. Thats how I actually bought my first ever bike in my 20s (or maybe I was 19). Saved up the bus fare and paid the bike shop on the Christmas club. Had it paid off in about 6 months from my wages.

Worked 5 years (thats where I was when I bought it) in B&Q and used the bus on about 3 occassions... if that.

User avatar
Charliecres
Posts: 1230
Joined: Tue Oct 01, 2013 1:28 pm

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Charliecres » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:48 am

Never have. It’s just not worth it. I’m not a racer and I got over the “must have the shiniest thing” urge years ago.

User avatar
Dave Barter
Posts: 2574
Joined: Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:21 pm

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Dave Barter » Sat Oct 31, 2020 12:04 pm

Years ago I had a custom built Omega road bike made for me by Mark Reilly. This was specced with top end Campag kit. It was perfect in every way and I loved riding that bike as it reminded me of all the hard work I’d put into my business to pay for it. Still have it. It’s awaiting a rebuild once Helen has polished the frame for me.
Elite keyboard warrior, DNF'er, Swearer

Gummikuh
Posts: 113
Joined: Thu May 04, 2017 9:44 am
Location: Roundabout Milton Keynes

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Gummikuh » Sat Oct 31, 2020 12:08 pm

I think that it's always a compromise to what works best.

That's not to say that good stuff is cheap, but as others have said is XTR really better than XT?

The trick is to buy wisely, and I love buying good stuff second hand within reason. But it is stuff that I have worked out is best for me and I am sure others will have a different set of needs. Exotica is about saving weight and sometimes that can simply be the same as leaving your house/car keys at home or going to the toilet before your ride.

But there is something very nice about well engineered and cool stuff and I do see the attraction, short lived though once it is ridden in the clag.

User avatar
BigdummySteve
Posts: 2587
Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2016 9:16 pm
Location: Oxfordshire

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by BigdummySteve » Sat Oct 31, 2020 12:25 pm

My Fargo is pretty much there now, it started life as a 27.5+ 2017 model

Wheels- front is a WTB 29” carbon rim on a SON dynamo hub, I’d previously run an SP and suffered the usual failure. The son has been faultlessly powering my sinewave beacon light/usb charger for 3 years.

The front fork is a Fox factory terelogic, it may be a dropbar bike but it keeps my hands from going numb and allows more control downhill.

Steering it is a Curve Walmer bar, it’s seriously wide. 55cm at the hoods with 7deg sweep on the tops and flared. With a short high rise stem it’s very comfortable.

Drivetrain- 170mm Raceface Next SL carbon cranks turn an Absolute black oval ring via Crank brothers Mallet 11 pedals.
Gears are SRAM XX1 AXS Eagle and an XX1 10-50 cassette, this wireless electronic mech has been faultless in every condition.
Rear wheel is built on an Onyx Vesper hub, it’s a sprag clutch hub and has instant power transfer, is silent and VERY low friction when freewheeling. I love this hub.

Shifters/brakes- Sram Red AXS levers with additional blips so I can shift from the tops, the carbon levers operate Hope RX4 calipers, I had loads of problems with the standard calipers. They would wear out pads it an alarming rate, felt wooden and I tried multiple disk sizes. The Hope calipers are great, powerful good feeling, a proper MTB brake for dropbars.

The fisik carbon saddle sits on an EEWings suspension post, it’s a mini thud buster and weighs only 50g more than a Thompson rigid post.

I don’t regret a single penny, I absolutely love this bike as much now as when I got it 3 years ago. It constantly surprises me in how capable it is, it’s been across Spain and handles a huge variety of terrain.

It wasn’t built in one go, parts were upgraded gradually as I found better alternatives.
I think one of the reasons why it works so well is everything is there for a reason and solved a little performance niggle.

If I was given an unlimited budget I’d build exactly the same bike but with a titanium frame. :X
We’re all individuals, except me.

Still evading capture, still at large.

User avatar
Bearbonesnorm
Posts: 20076
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: my own little world

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:10 pm

Stu... Do it, I doubt you'll regret it.
I've absolutely no intention of doing it Shaf. I'd regret it before I even started.
What value a life half lived if the half you lived was the wrong half?

mattpage
Posts: 216
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2014 10:35 am

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by mattpage » Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:23 pm

So long as someone else is paying :wink:

Definitely a case of marginal gains, but I would also say the most expensive doesn't mean the best.
One persons no expensive spared bike could be perfect sub £5k, but someone else it might be £12k. Difference tastes, different styles.

redefined_cycles
Posts: 5319
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2016 8:19 am
Location: Dewsbury, West Yorkshire

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by redefined_cycles » Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:26 pm

Bearbonesnorm wrote:
Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:10 pm
Stu... Do it, I doubt you'll regret it.
I've absolutely no intention of doing it Shaf. I'd regret it before I even started.
Haha... I suppose thats the advantage of having a few bikes to play with at any one time. Me and Steve (the ti pedals from his bike will be going on this build, as will the Dura Ace cranks I currently run on the roadie/grvly) only have enough for 1 or 2 bikes so I think we like to optimise em.

Still not invested in that stem yet... Bit more thought :smile: and I'll check my account this aft...

Landslide
Posts: 1187
Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:00 pm

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Landslide » Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:28 pm

The best money I've spent on cycling in recent years has been on yoga and coached turbo sessions.

User avatar
PaulB2
Posts: 1187
Joined: Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:32 pm
Location: Stafford

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by PaulB2 » Sat Oct 31, 2020 1:33 pm

Nope, my bikes have all been stock except for tyres. I was planning on building up a frame in the new year for the first time but that’ll be on a tight budget.

User avatar
BigdummySteve
Posts: 2587
Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2016 9:16 pm
Location: Oxfordshire

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by BigdummySteve » Sat Oct 31, 2020 2:08 pm

I think there’s different reasons for what you buy, the first is the purely practical. Does it perform the job required in an acceptable fashion, deore stuff is the perfect example, almost all of it works far better than it’s price point. Then there are components like my onyx hub, it’s very expensive at £500 and doesn’t really perform a different function to a deore hub.
It’s appeal for me lies in its unique qualities, the instant pickup and silence makes for a very enjoyable riding experience, it is faster when freewheeling but really it appeals as engineer, I started my working life as a precision engineer, to me the onyx is a thing of beauty, I get value from it purely from the appreciation of its superb engineering.

Is it worth the cost? Of course not.
We’re all individuals, except me.

Still evading capture, still at large.

jameso
Posts: 3989
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2012 1:48 pm
Location: Chilterns

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by jameso » Sat Oct 31, 2020 2:52 pm

Twice. A Santa Cruz Chameleon in '98. Orange Z1 Bombers, XTR cranks, shifters, mech and V brake levers, 1x set up, Syncros post, Azonic bar and stem, nice D521 wheels with IRC Kujo DH tyres. Nothing crazy but cost a lot for me back then. I wrecked the crank splines and ripped the mech off within 6 months and eventually cracked the frame. Was an amazing bike though, XC and 4X on the same bike in the same weekend.

Then I bought a Jones Ti spaceframe with full 980 series XTR and a nice Paul / Hope wheelset, original Ti H bars and a few trimmings about 10 yrs ago. Still relatively sensible as the ex rate was 1.8 back then and Jones Ti bike prices were just 'a bit artisan' rather than fully bonkers.
It soon became a SS and stayed that way, the XTR rear mech died on a stump on another bike and the front mech lasted well on my gravel bike until last winter when part of the forging gave way at the pivot.
I took the XTR brakes off and sold them after not that long, they were great but the tiny levers didn't work with the H-bars. Put some XT 770 servowaves brakes on it and they suit the bars far better than more recent Shimanos. The XTR cranks are still on there though with the hardly-worn rings hung up in the garage 'in case'. Basically the frameset was a hit and the parts weren't so relevant. And I don't even look at XTR anymore :grin:

All in all I'm not fussed by top end parts, I'd rather have something that functions 95% as well but I can justify using as it's meant to be used because it's just a tool for the job. Frames and forks though, will always be able to justify spending top money on them if it gets me what I want or something special. A mint condition Colnago Master in mid 90s Lampre colours... that would get top end NOS Campagnolo parts. Road bikes can be beautiful things that stay that way.

User avatar
Richpips
Posts: 1578
Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2013 2:57 pm
Location: Peak District

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by Richpips » Sat Oct 31, 2020 3:01 pm

Yep, before kids I built an XTR carbon hardtail which was all about marginal gains which in retrospect didn't really matter for how it rode.

It did look nice though.

I think I prefer putting together a bike these days with as little expense as possible. :lol:

jobro
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:29 pm
Location: Perfect Purbecks

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by jobro » Sat Oct 31, 2020 3:07 pm

I did build up a Turner Czar with pretty much no expense limit. Formula R1 brakes were and remain rubbish. Next SL crank tore all the chain bolts off. Bike is still great to ride though.
Also once built up a Roberts dogs bollx with the lightest kit I could buy only to find a lot were very bendy and/or weak.
Nowadays I go for second tier groups - XT, Ultra etc as best bang for buck.

slarge
Posts: 2080
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2011 4:49 pm
Location: MTB mecca (Warwickshire)

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by slarge » Sat Oct 31, 2020 3:16 pm

I've often wondered if you could build a forum bike Top Trumps style - everyone has 1 component that they play, and it can be replaced by a lighter or more expensive component - at the end you add up the cost of the bike or the weight of the bike and see how much you could actually spend, or weight for a whole bike.

I don't often buy bikes (despite the looks from the other half) - each bike gets kept (and I have never sold a bike), so each bike gets carefully upgraded to my exact spec. Currently my Epic has XX1 cranks, carbon wheels, Mt Zoom bars, Hope X2 Race brakes and will be upgraded to Shimano 11 or 12 speed when I work out cost/compatibility etc. I bought it 2nd hand when it was 6 months old, saving £1k on the new price, and am slowly turning it into S-Works equivalent spec for a lot less than the £7.5k an S-Works Epic costs - but to my spec with well thought through components. My hardtail was built up to an 8.5kg bike for around £1500 (plus some later upgrades) using new old stock or 2nd hand parts (with new parts when I wouldn't trust 2nd hand - bars, stem etc)

A no expense spared bike would be less fun to build I think - sourcing nice stuff carefully is part of the fun of a bike. And boutique stuff could be less robust in the real world? Just a thought.

User avatar
UnderTheRadars
Posts: 222
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:12 pm
Location: Stourbridge/North Col of North Worcestershire Alps

Re: Ever built a no expense spared bike?

Post by UnderTheRadars » Sat Oct 31, 2020 3:54 pm

Yup. 15 years ago I built up a Santa Cruz Blur LT with full XTR, Chris King hubs + headset, Hope brakes, Easton Carbon bars, Thomson bits and Pace (briefly) and DT Swiss forks.

Must’ve spent £6k-ish on it, it was my dream bike.

It’s now sat in my parents garage, not ridden it for 6 years, it’s probably now only worth a couple of hundred, and will need forks and shock service, brake service, new tyres and a hub service to get it back in to decent nick.

At the time I was spunking money on all sorts, and got in to debt doing so. It was an early symptom of my, at the time, unknown depression, as buying stuff made me feel better, it was of course short lived so bought something else for my next ‘fix’.

I still struggle with the urge to buy stuff now, but know it’s a symptom and that it won’t make me feel better. It helps that I’m not paid much so anything I do want I have to save up for, and I know that if I still want it after a couple of months of saving then it’s not being bought on a whim.

Anyway, the bike, I still like it, it’s still my dream bike, I just need to save up and getting It in top working condition again
Image

Post Reply