Last year, I stayed with a friend in north Austin during SXSW. A bike was the best way to make the three-mile journey downtown. I had a few options:
- Renting I called Bicycle Sport Shop and a couple other stores. The problem is that people rent bicycles as entertainment, not transportation, and they’re priced accordingly. At $30 a day to start, that’s more than a car. A 10-day rental would have cost $210.
- Yellow Bike The Austin yellow bike project was in the middle of a move, and most of their bikes were in storage.
- Shipping my bike both ways — UPS or FedEx ground — would have run me about $80.
- Buying a bike The cheapest thing to do was to buy a bike. Academy had some cheap mountain bikes. Target’s were a bit cheaper. I ended up with a Magna Glacier.
I always wondered who bought those department-store bikes.
All was fine for a couple of days. Then: boom. The chain breaks, gets caught in the rear wheel and causes the bike to fishtail. I go down. Hard. I tore my new jeans and ripped a gash in my arm. Oops.
That turned out to be a very expensive “cheap” bicycle.
Check out what happened. The chain was so poorly made, that the metal itself bent and buckled:
Last year, I bought my own snowboarding gear. I snagged a great deal on the board from REI and picked up the bindings from Sports Basement. Since the prices were so good, I upgraded from EX to RX bindings.
Ride’s RX bindings are a step up from their EX model, which is a step up from the LX model. Got that? With an MSRP of over $200, this isn’t the bottom of their line.