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Thu, 25 Nov 2004

The theory of N+1 - 18:22
No this is not a computing or computer science entry, this is about bikes, though computer geeks will probably understand the need, however they focus more on the latest shiny computer hardware and toys.

Cyclists understand the lust for new gear of the cycling type. The N+1 theory is based on this. At any given time the number of bikes you wish to own is N+1 where N is the number of bikes you currently own. Using myself as an example I own three bikes, one dual suspension mountain bike, one alloy hardtail (I specifically say alloy hardtail as I prefer steel as a frame material, however I bent my steel hardtail in a crash in January and due to good steel mtb frames being hard to find I have not replaced it yet) and a steel road bike (the one on the left upon which I am leaning).

Any member of the non cycling public will probably think three is far more than needed, any cyclist will understand why I obviously need many more than three. What I would like to do is get another good hardtail (ti) or (steel) frame, use that as my second mtb. Then build the black aluminium frame into a bastardised road bike (26" mtb wheels with thin slicks, drop bars, v-brakes, triple chainring with a 50 tooth big ring). The biggest problem is that the bastardised road bike would have an alloy frame, but hey it would still be useful, for long rides on unsurfaced roads in the middle of nowhere. (for which Richard has recently purchased a Surly Crosscheck frame built up as a touring bike. (making us all jealous)), so this bastardised road bike would be good to ride on road rides regularly as it is tougher and stops faster, though for long rides on bitumen or when I need to go fast, on the road, my road bike may still be preferable.

Of course there are other bikes I would like and use, such as a singlespeed (though by preference, put together from parts with an old steel frame picked up second hand), a longer travel more downhill style duallie so I can ride off things or down things without worrying so much about breaking the bike (though with a bike like that maybe I should worry about breaking myself more). This is of course just a few thoughts, being an avid cyclist I am sure I can think up more bikes I would want to own. Mal Bennett (owner of the Maladjusted bike shop in Canberra) for example has around 12 to 15 bikes at any given time, I suspect the only reason he owns a bike shop is to make his bike habit cheaper. Strangely all the new models of good bikes that come in, they come in in Mal's size first. Ahhh toys.

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