Dolla Dolla bills Yo!

Main Mountain Biking

So there I was talking to Moe and we found out that Mountain Bikers tend to spend more money on bike parts than Bike Commuters. Could it be that mountain bikers just have more money like Scrooge McDuck? Are one of you so rich that you have a vault full of money and you can actually swim in it?

One theory we came up with was that bike commuters mainly ride to and from work as a means of transportation, to save money and for health reasons. They usually are minimalists and make their dollars and bikes stretch to the limit. A large portion of mountain bikers ride for recreational reasons and like most Americans that have hobbies, they like to spend money towards it.

With that in mind and please correct me if I’m wrong, is it safe to assume that mountain bikers are component geeks? Do they love to upgrade to the latest and greatest? When I worked at the shop, I saw this happening quite often. People would come in and drop hundreds of dollars on new parts because the new model just came out…even though the stuff they have is only a year old.

Are you one of those people that are literally supporting the bike industry by upgrading your bike or parts all the time? Well first of all I do thank you for supporting your LBS or IBS (internet bike shop), secondly…I admire you. There are so many things I wish I could afford, but I’m p’oh and very broke.

RL Policar

RL Policar is an avid mountain biker and the Editor In-Chief of and Between the two sites, he's published well over 4,000 articles (and growing).

6 thoughts on “Dolla Dolla bills Yo!

  1. I don’t think you’re wrong…but I think that most recreational cyclists like to upgrade and be a bit of a “component geek”, regardless of the discipline (tri, road or MTB).

    I think you’re right on the money about commuters — they see their bikes as transportation first and recreation second, so they might be a bit more conservative in spending money for upgrades. Although, I must add that a lot of commuters like to upgrade the safety and comfort equipment before they upgrade drivetrain components!

  2. i have to agree. although i’m not a commuter but i’d like to be (i have a 60+ mile round trip to work). i know the urge to have better is always there. i have a 2 month old GF HiFi deluxe and i’m already wanting to upgrade the wheels and seat. whats your experience with road bikers? i know at our LBS the roadies tend to spend more just to save a few ounces.

  3. I do both, mtb alot and commute on a bike about 5 miles each way. I spend WAY more on the mtb just because things wear out faster and break more often due to more miles, a harsher environment, and all those damn rocks (but I do love them). Basically my commute bike spending has been new wheels when I wore through the rims and blew the rear out while airing it up and a new drive train after it finally got to the point of skipping too badly. MTB, lets not go there, I hate to think about it. But Im not the kind of guy who upgrades just to upgrade, when something wears out or breaks Ill consider an upgrade but paying extra just to shave a few grams isn’t my style.

  4. Roadies seem pretty willing to buy upgrades for weight-savings and bling factor, or merely for upgrading’s sake (got to impress your riding partners, right?).

    Funny thing is, a lot of the roadies I see could stand to lose some weight around their midsections rather than spend X dollars to save 10 grams on their stems or bars.

  5. Commuter bikes should be cheap or just “good enough” because you may want to leave (or park) them outside when running errands. Thieves wouldn’t bother.

  6. As a mountain biker, I agree with Kevin about the harsher environment. All the upgrades I’ve made to my bike were because I broke the part getting replaced and needed something stronger.

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