The cost of living is rising quickly, and sometimes it seems I can do very little about it. Those 85 mpg turbo diesel cars from Europe are still unavailable to us in the United States, and food is up too. I've begun to feel guilty about even my modest expenditures for classic bikes and bike parts. At $70 for a box of db spokes, $50 to ship a bike and $50 for a set of bars, it all adds up to more strain on my sensible budget .... UNTIL!.... until I saw the latest issue of Bicycling magazine. They are now unashamedly proposing that one spend $379 for a set of ceramic hub bearings and $1,300 for a wheelset! I'm encouraged to find out that there are those who would spend about $8 for a single ceramic ball that he could easily drop on the floor, roll off and lose. I sometimes have spent little more for an entire hub with still usable bearings from Ebay. This invites the comparison that a dependable, delightful old bike can be purchased for the cost of a few tanks of gas, or a few dinners out with friends. At $100 for 16 ounces of uncooked Kobe Porterhouse steak my last bike project cost quite a bit less per ounce.
Garth Libre in Miami Florida USA