Would I add to or bling out the fleet?
Discretionary money is such a beautiful thing for those who have it. I don’t and because of that I don’t run across this question very often, if ever. With a homemaker wife, two kids under 4 and absolutely no mechanical skills whatsoever I’m thankful I am able to keep my 2 bikes in working order. Also, with a small two car garage and semi-pack rat tendencies, finding room for the bikes gets to be a problem. But I’m sure there are a few of you out there that have debated this question and have developed passionate feelings towards your decision.
Some people actually have this many bikes in their garage
Some people have a more utilitarian view towards mountain bikes. The bike should work and as long as it works the parts on the bike will stay. If a part breaks, then replace with comparable part, not better. No need to upgrade whatever is working fine. The flip side to having bikes that just plain work is that you can spend your discretionary money on having more bikes. Choosing to stick with stock means that cash can be accumulated for bigger purchases like different types of bikes: hardtail, SS, XC FS, DJ, DH, AM… None of these bikes will make you stop and stare as they pass by, but the sheer quantity of the bikes will make your head spin.
Chris King Hubs
If, on the other hand, the rider prefers to spend money on their bike rather than on new bikes, you get the rider who has bling bikes instead. The original bike probably started off as a perfectly functioning bike with a solid parts spec, think Deore or X.7. But watch out! Shortly after the owner gets their hands on the bike you start seeing the carbon handlebars, XTR and Chris King hubs. These bikes make you stop in your tracks and take another look if for no other reason than to guess how much money went into the bike. What this means though, is that instead of having a lot of bikes, the rider may only have a couple really nice ones.
Then there are those who are uber rich, or still don’t understand credit, and have lots of blinged out bikes. We won’t be discussing them.
Moots Ti HT, Blinged out via Aspire Velo Tech
Maybe I’m generalizing a bit much but in my experience this is sort of what I’ve seen. There are moderates, of which I fall into (OF COURSE), but they’re not as much fun to discuss. And although none of these methods are wrong both camps have riders that fiercely defend their purchasing habits as the “right” way. They get all prickly when asked why their methods are questioned or compared to the other method, which of course makes this debate interesting.
If I had a choice would I add to or bling out the fleet? Both, always both.