Can You Remember Every Bicycle You’ve Ever Owned?

Over the past year I’ve created a few posts that have cataloged all of the tandems we’ve owned on this blog, as well as all of the motorcycle as well as all of the cars & trucks I’ve owned on my other blog.

I recently posted something on Facebook regarding all of the “old” bicycles that currently make up the pool of bicycles that I use for both road and off-road riding.  What was of note that that most of them are built on high-end frames, hand-made in the U.S. by low-volume boutique builders, e.g, Calfee, Ventana, Dean, Erickson, Ritchey with a couple of Bianchi’s thrown in there.  That prompted me to create a list of all of the bicycles that I’ve “owned” since childhood.

I thought about adding photos of each of these bikes — given that I actually have photos of most of them — but at least for the time being I’ve decided the juice isn’t worth the squeeze.  So, at least for those of you who see this today, there isn’t an accompanying photo collection.  Perhaps in time I’ll add them.

In closing, having recently visited a bike shop and seen the kind of money shops are asking for high-end, essentially mas-produced bikes made in Asia with price tags of $2,500 to $9.500 for single road and off-road bikes, I’m pretty sure those old late 1990’s hand-made frames I’m still riding will do just fine considering that the biggest limiting factor when it comes to performance, reliability and endurance is the motor… not the bike itself.  Given that limitation, my old bike frames sporting a few replacement parts are more than up to the job of handling anything I can dole-out with my 60+ year old body.

  • 1962 – Sister’s hand-me-down Schwinn Hollywood
  • 1964 – New Schwinn Typhoon
  • 1967 – New Schwinn Racer 3 spd.
  • 1972 – New Araya Rex
  • 1975 – New Raleigh Gran Prix
  • 1983 – New Raleigh Gran Prix
  • 1986 – Used 1984 Raleigh Prestige
  • 1989 – New Kuwahara Cougar MTB
  • 1992 – New Trek 2300
  • 1993 – New Novara Aspen (for Debbie)
  • 1996/7 – New Santana Arriva Tandem
  • 1998 – New Pro Flex 857 F/S MTB (Son Has It)
  • 1998 – New Erickson Signature Tandem
  • 1999 – Used 1998 C’dale MT3000 MTB Tandem
  • 1999 – New Erickson Signature (Still Have It)
  • 1999 – Used 1997 Schwinn Peloton (for Debbie)
  • 2000 – NOS* 1997 Ventana ECDM F/S MTB Tandem
  • 2000 – NOS* Ventana Marble Peak F/S MTB (Still Have It)
  • 2001 – Used 1998 Dean Castanza Ti (Still Have It)
  • 2002 – New Ventana ECDM F/S MTB Tandem (Still Have It)
  • 2002 – New Erickson Custom Travel Tandem
  • 2003 – Used 2000 Ritchey Road Logic (for Debbie/Still Have It)
  • 2003 – NOS* 1998 Bianchi TdF Replica (Still Have It)
  • 2005 – New Bianchi Pista/Track Bike (Still Have It)
  • 2007 – Used 1997 Calfee Tetra Pro (Still Have It)
  • 2007 – New Calfee Custom Travel Tandem (Still Have It)
  • 2008 – Used 1999 Calfee Luna Pro (for Debbie/Still Have it)
  • 2012 – Used 2008(?) Performance Tandems – Triplet (Still Have It)
  • 2013 – Used 2002 Dean Scout MTB (Still Have It)

* New / Old Stock

About TG

I've been around a bit and done a few things, have a couple kids and a few grandkids. I tend to be curmudgeonly, matter-of-fact and not predisposed to self-serving chit-chat. Thankfully, my wife's as nice as can be otherwise we'd have no friends. My interests are somewhat eclectic, but whose aren't?
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2 Responses to Can You Remember Every Bicycle You’ve Ever Owned?

  1. Msrw says:

    Definitely true that lots of handmade bikes from the 80s and 90s perform well. But also, I recently rode a Colnago Super from the late 70s handmade by Ernesto Colnago himself. I raced on this bike as a junior and Cat 2. At the time I thought it was really an ultimate road bike; but compared to any high end racing bike currently being made it now feels slow, sluggish, inefficient and not all that great in handling.

  2. Frank says:

    A wonderful collection right there. A couple of the marques I had never heard of (not surprising as I do not live in the States).
    Are the current mass-manufactured high-end frames really worth their prices? In theory a competitive market should ensure that prices reflect cost plus a modest profit but this is only true for commodities. High-end bikes and components have become Veblen goods with pricing deeply distorted by marketing and perception. It doesn’t help that only a few large incumbents have the finances to run marketing and operations at a global scale.
    I do not mean to impound the performance of these products. They are indeed very performing in a narrow sense. Other criteria exist, such as vulnerability to crashes, long-term durability, repairability or freedom from premature obsolescence due to proprietary components, where their performance is frankly inadequate and a step back from earlier technology.
    The prices charged for these frames are also surprising given that they often have very poor manufacturing tolerances as well as voids and wrinkles in the carbon layup, leading to creakings, poor bearing life, etc. Current high-end frames from the major brands make a custom frame look like a very good investment.
    Regarding obsolescence: I have a Time RXRS and a Look KG386i. I fully expect to be riding the Look (manufactured in 2003) till I’m too old to ride, as it uses only standard components. The Time has a proprietary headset, fork and seatmast topper that will be very difficult to source in the future.

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