WOHAB Week #2: Plastic Fantastic

Dear Loyal Readers,

School’s out this week, which means I must parent more aggressively. In turn, I must short-change you, so welcome to the Bike Snob NYC “Week of Half-Assed Blogging,” or “WOHAB.” The theme for WOHAB will be cheap-assed used bikes, and for the next five days I’ll be featuring my hastily-chosen personal recommendations, one on each day. Thanks very much for reading, ride safe (or at least as safely as you can on a cheap-assed used bike of mysterious provenance), and next week I’ll resume “MUMBOB,” or “My Usual Mediocre Brand Of Blogging.”

Yours etc.,

Tan Tenovo

PS: I know calling it “WOHAB Week” is redundant, like saying “ATM Machine,” but sometimes you just need an extra syllable.

Cheap-Ass Used Bike #2: Son Of Vengeance Bike!

Further to yesterday’s post, which was geared towards someone who is looking for an inexpensive entrée into the world of road cycling, today’s recommendation is for the rider who already has everything and would like to purchase something of a whimsical novelty bike just to keep life interesting, or perhaps to troll people on the Internet. To this end, I searched for quirky bikes with which I have direct experience. For example, there was this magnificent Softride…

…but the price was positively ridiculous:

Between the price and the bike itself it’s clear this person has been eating mushrooms with Bob and Doug.

Similarly trippy was this specimen, which looks like the hallucination of someone experiencing a sort of deranged Eroica of the Mind:

Alas, that one was even more expensive:

Clearly Softrides command a premium now that I’ve made them retro-chic, so I tried a different tack:

It looks like it’s in good shape, the model is rare with a good backstory, and despite the dated aesthetics and proto-gravel novelty factor it’s a bike a sane person might actually want, but the price still felt a little high for what is essentially a midrange bike without wheels:

I was just about to give up, but then a reader emailed me this:

Based on how clean it looked I just assumed it was another delusional seller wanting big bucks (for some reason people think they can get thousands of dollars for these things), but I was wrong:

Before last year I’d have said that’s too much for one of these things, but now that I’m riding one I’d say it’s a good deal. From the pictures it looks like someone converted it to a triple using 105 components, which is fine (it also enhances the novelty/troll factor), but it does still have some of what is probably the Dura Ace it was originally built up with:

Of course there’s always the question of how long a vintage crabon bike will last, but according to at least one industry person these things are “beyond bulletproof:”

That’s this guy, who also invented the FIST protocol:

Huh, when triathlons said they were going to get FISTed I always thought they were talking about something else.

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