The costs of running a car and the joys of cycling

It was ever thus. Many years ago, way back in 1936, E.B. White wrote a wonderful essay in The New Yorker titled Farewell to Model T - a sort of elegy to the simple days in his youth (he was born in 1899) when anyone could repair an automobile and you mail-ordered your spare parts through your Sear & Roebuck catalogue. And now we have bicycle shifting going electric - just try repairing that in your backyard on a sunny afternoon with the radio on and an open beer beside you...
The Elder Son has a theory that E-bikes and electric shifting are more to do with the manufacturers realising that bikes were too simple to fix, and they were losing money because spares aren't expensive enough, so they're training users to buy new components that will break sooner and can't be repaired at home, and are incompatible with other companies parts so users have to come back to them.
 

hoopdriver

Veteran
Location
East Sussex
Its a good theory. Just try taking apart an STI or Ergo shifter - you'll be lucky if you don't get a tiny spring in your eye and you'll never be able to put it back together again...
 

screenman

Legendary Member
The Elder Son has a theory that E-bikes and electric shifting are more to do with the manufacturers realising that bikes were too simple to fix, and they were losing money because spares aren't expensive enough, so they're training users to buy new components that will break sooner and can't be repaired at home, and are incompatible with other companies parts so users have to come back to them.
Therefore creating jobs around the world.
 

hoopdriver

Veteran
Location
East Sussex
We are a wealthy country a lot of components are made in less wealthy countries.
So...we owe it to the world to use and discard, fill up our landfill, so we can keep factories and sweatshops busy in less wealthy countries?
 

MichaelW2

Veteran
It's makes me wonder if car manufacturers will ever get back to basics again one day, and produce a car thats not fully loaded with things we take for granted such a Electric windows / air con etc and mechanics that can easily repaired.
I don't think this will ever happen though sadly
The little VW UP from my car club reminds me of a 1970s car, complete with painted metal panels on the inside of the doors. This style seems to be an option only for small city cars.
 
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