JD.BLAZINGBOX.COM » Bicycles and Bicycling

Bicycle Maintenance Budget

(6 posts)

  1. So I think it's time to start thinking about a maintenance budget for my bikes.

    Lube is a given, and probably is the least expensive.
    It's probably the only thing that some people will think of when you mention bicycle maintenance, so they'll probably laugh at the first thought of a budget.

    But we need other things.

    Tires and tubes will need replaced... eventually.

    Bearings wear out... after a lot of miles.

    An untrue wheel/rim will need to be straightened/trued or replaced at some point.

    Chains and gears wear out.

    Brakes will need work... at least some day.

    Lights need batteries, or will need to be replaced/repaired.

    And... I could go on and on...

    So what is a fair amount of money to budget for bicycle maintenance?

    How much money should we put aside (per bike) each week or month?

    Everybody's answers are going to be different, but it's something to think about.

    I figure that if the bike is saving me $20.00 every week in gasoline, then $5 to $10 would be a fair amount to go into the bike maintenance budget fund every week.

    Once I reach say $150.00 or so then I will probably be able to make most repairs that may become necessary.
    That little fund should keep me on the road.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  2. That budget idea is sort of a funny thing--the way it works out.

    The budget *should* mean maximum per week/month/yr/etc...


    I have found that if I find a spare part on sale at a super low price, then I will generally buy the part... Like when Kevlar tires went on sale for $5.00 each. The store only had one, but they also had some racks for $10.00 each, and I bought 2 of those.

    What the heck?
    A $20.00 tire for $5.00 -- I'd be crazy to pass on that.
    Good racks that go for $30.00 or more for $10.00... yep!

    It just makes sense to spend less on something you know you'll need and can get it at a fraction of the cost.

    So I broke my budget and have an extra tire, but I mounted one of the racks, and it comes in handy.

    The extra rack? ... It will go on my back-up bike.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. Back to budget.

    So I had a chain break on me Monday.
    LBS: $ 12.50 and tax.

    Rode to bike shop on Wednesday (will be yesterday by the time I finish writing this post) and bought the chain.

    Ask them for a better chain tool, and they can order me one for somewhere in the neighborhood of $12.00 (I'll wait).

    Stopped by the auto parts store and bought a VICE GRIP brand Vice Grip pliers. Approx $16.00 with a no questions ask replacement guarantee. If it breaks they replace it for free.

    Earlier this month I replaced a brake cable.
    Approx $2.50 .. not bad.

    So I've averaged 300 miles before minor parts begin to fail.
    Not parts I expected to fail so soon, but it's an old bike.

    Tires I have on hand...
    Tubes I have on hand...
    Rim strips - on hand...

    Basic chain break / multi tool - cost me $30 but it's handy.
    Basic wrench set - I bought generic - cost about $ 7.00
    VICE GRIPS - Don't leave home without them - $15.50

    Do I even count tools in the budget?
    I don't count tools to work on my cars in it's budget.

    Actual repair costs to date in parts.
    $ 2.50 one cable
    $12.50 one chain
    $15.00 Total repair costs vs 300 miles.

    Keeping in mind that I'm on a 42 year old bike, and that the chain was probably an original American Made Schwinn chain... Cable housings appear to be original -- so these cables might be 40 years old. I'd imagine that 300 miles has been a good run for $15.00 in parts over this last month.

    Now one last thing...
    My analog mile-o-meter needs repaired or replaced.
    I want to attempt to repair it. But I need to get a replacement before too long (while a few are still out there).
    The replacement is going to cost between $12 and $30 bux.

    Now I want to make it clear that the Mile-O-Meter didn't fail.
    I broke it.
    I grabbed on to it by accident and the mount snapped.

    Epoxy *might* fix it, but for how long?

    I better get a replacement or two while I can...
    It's something that isn't made anymore, and I have become accustomed to using it. P.I.T.A. to read it sometimes, but it is accurate.

    I'll report back sooner or later... hopefully later.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. Lets throw another $10.00 into the mix since I bought a "BELL" branded chain today. No 5th speed under load, no 10th speed under load--and I am hoping that my current chain will stretch enough for those gears to start working...or maybe it will need shortened.

    An extra chain is always a handy thing to have.

    So how much cash have I thrown at this now?
    $26 Bux... 1/2 the price of gasoline over 300 miles...
    Plus... I have extra parts for when I need them.

    Should I count tools?
    I think not at this time.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. So it's about time to park the old Schwinn over the winter.

    I'll probably tare it down, grease it up, check bearings, etc...

    New tires for the coming season...

    Fix a chain issue. *STOP!* This means I'll have it on the road a few more times before getting it out of the elements.

    Need to get a somewhat old but dependable mountain bike on the road for exploring the off-road areas that I've been mostly walking lately.

    I enjoy the walks, but need to make more time along the ridge-lines.

    Will be going into the budget fund (after the taxman has his share).

    Posted 1 year ago #
  6. 2 tires and 2 tubes.
    I already had these for last year, but decided to put some more miles on those old tires.

    Cost must have been $35.xx or so... without looking back at the invoice.

    Posted 1 year ago #

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