Am I mad? My bike has no soul…
Know exactly what you mean.
My old Specialized is a great bike but is just that, a bike. Great to ride but no connection was felt towards it whatsoever.
My 5 on the other hand is custom-specced, has been on loads of adventures and has a knack of taunting me to get out and ride it every time I look at it!! Every scratch tells a story and it looks the better for it 😀
If all my bikes were to be stolen I’d be gutted but would mourn the loss of the 5, be like losing a girlfriend. The others would just be items on the claims form.Posted 4 years ago
Just want to see if its just me or if anyone else feels this way. I have a great all-round MTB that works perfectly but for some reason due to it being a made in Taiwan big brand trail tamer I just can’t love it, I am constantly impressed by it and ride well on it but it just has no SOUL.
I feel the need to go back to something not made by machines which probably doesn’t work as well but I know I would love it.
Am I bonkers?Posted 4 years agoroverpigSubscriber
It doesn’t mean that you are not bad, but if it’s any consolation you are not alone in your madness.
I recently sold my grey Trance in favour of a neon orange Five. Is the Five a better bike than the Trance? Probably not. The Trance was a great bike, but I just never felt any love for it. I’d get off it and think it had performed flawlessly, but I wasn’t particularly bothered about repeating the experience. With the Five I always end up with a big grin and a desire to get back out there as soon as possible, which (if I’m honest) probably has less to do with how the bike itself performs and more to do with my perception of it.Posted 4 years agojohnellisonMember
No soul or you just don’t notice it?
My take is that if you don’t notice something, it’s doing it’s job perfectly well.
My Orange Alpine is probably the best MTB I’ve ever owned (and I’ve had a few in my time. And bikes. Matron.) – but when I’m out on it I just don’t notice that it’s there (except when I’m having to grind up stupidly steep hills…).
To me that’s the sign of a great bike. Yes, it doesn’t “engage” perhaps as a nice hand-crafted steel hardtail with your pick of components, but hey – it’s a bike!Posted 4 years agobellefiedMember
its a bit like would you prefer an Audi R8 or a Ferrari 458 – the audi is cheaper, handles better, has better features, including 4 wheel drive, is as fast on a circuit, is more practical and is put together better…. but you’d prefer the Ferrari, for mainly subjective reasons
(adapted from “Top Gear goes to Spain” by Enid Blyton)Posted 4 years ago
Ah no I disagree with you there – its not about form over function, or how much it cost. Anyway I am wierd I wouldn’t prefer the Ferrari, perhaps that is more why I can’t love my highly performing and developed bike and long for something more simple and indiosynchratic.Posted 4 years agoNobbySubscriber
I get what you mean ddm – I just think of it as feel rather than a soul as such.
When choosing my last bike I initially went for one based on reviews & perception, tested it & hated it. Then another, then another so ended up riding all sorts of bikes over the next few months. Several were good, a couple very good & one just made me want to ride it again & again. It was a simpler design than most, not particularly nice to look at but it felt like it was made for me.
Even now, 5 years on, IMHO, it still rides better than anything else I’ve tried (despite having small wheels, not enough travel & too many gears). 🙂Posted 4 years agoclubberMember
Does a bike have Soul?
Only if you put it there.
By Gary Fisher
I subscribe to that. No new bike has real soul unless maybe you built it yourself. Anyone can buy a niche/boutique bike if they wave the credit card. That doesn’t give a bike soul.
For me at least, it’s the experiences that I have with that bike(frame) that mean something. It’s why my ’95 Kona which is just a Far Eastern produced steel frame is a bike I love even though my newer bikes are much better.
So, you need to get out and ride it more and experience more on it.Posted 4 years agoaaMember
totally feel what you’re saying ddmonkey.Posted 4 years ago
My last mtb was, on paper, everything i wanted. But, it was characterless so I sold it. People on here have said they like this particular frame/bike. But i found it boring. I have a salsa ala carte, its a barrel of laughs, total fun to ride, even the commute turns into manualling over drains etc!
My road bike, a de rosa, has SO much soul, to the point it’s been given a name, and everyone who knows me half well knows its name.
My third bike, a bonty, also has soul and is a keeper.
Other bikes have come and gone, but none have ‘spoke’ to me like the 3 i have now. (although i am thinking of getting rid of the de rosa for a salsa colossal….)zeesaffaMember
I know what you mean about the Trance.Posted 4 years ago
I’m fairly new to MTB’ing and due to an insurance payout splurged on a Trance 29er. Great all round bike… but doesn’t excite me very much. I don’t think there’s anything worth upgrading on it that will make me change my mind either 🙁
I’m going to abuse it for another year or so anyway 🙂justatheoryMember
There isn’t much between most top end bikes and they pretty much have all the same bits attached. I get the appeal of having something a bit more personal and unique but pesonally I’m not prepared to pay the premium.
Some people definitely get a bit elitist about it, but really when it comes down to it they’re all just bikes.Posted 4 years agoaaMember
Clubber, true.Posted 4 years ago
I was considering buying a custom groovy cycles, but, its a big spend, a big wait for something that might not give me as much pleasure as a taiwanese built steel hardtail.
I was agreeing to some bikes having soul. The first time i rode the ala carte i had a connection with it. It wants to go faster…..but it forgives my mincingly poor line choices!
I should mention that none of them are off the shelf bikes…
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