Paying for a Brand Name?

23869-440x440In cycling the process of getting your bike exactly the way you want it is almost impossible. Why? Well, I am glad you asked. Answer: because new stuff is coming out all of the time. How many times have you said that if you just had this, this, and this on your bike you would be satisfied? I see you nodding your head. Well, when it comes to buying cycling products and having the latest thing that either sheds weight, improves speed, helps in comfort, or a combination, it becomes a “keeping up with the Joneses” mentality. Admit it. Who among us doesn’t like someone drooling over our ride?

Recently I discussed buying a wheel set for my bike. I finally “settled” on a set of Zipp 202 clinchers. Romoe’s new-found love, Juliet, brought up an interesting point when she asked what was in a name. Well, Jules, a lot. Many times I’ve been told that you’re really only paying for the brand name. Like I have said before, I do research. I do NOT buy something because others will think it’s cool. I want performance from everything I purchase, from a cell phone to a set of carbon wheels. As a consumer, you must be informed. As a cyclist, be prepared to answer the question of why you chose to put a certain item on your bike. If your reply is that you thought it looked cool, well . . . bless your heart (I’m from the South. That’s a nice way of saying you’re an idiot).

As far as my jump from the wheels I was going to get to Zipps, it wasn’t a quick jump. Wheels are wheels in a certain price range? WRONG. Yes, many wheel makers use the same aluminum or carbon builder and just slap their stickers on. It has even been mentioned that some UCI professionals use Lightweights and put the stickers of the team’s wheel sponsor on them. Heck, I would too if I could afford a set of Lightweights! I’m not there, nor will I probably ever be. The Zipp brand is different when it comes to just buying a name. I believe that Zipps have done their homework. To say that I’m excited about rolling with these is an understatement. Check out this video to show you the reason a set of Zipps cost what they cost and perform the way they perform: Zipp.

The wheels are suppose to be at my door on January 18th. I’m thinking of taking the day off and waiting on my front steps . . . okay, probably not. I’ll give myself two or three weeks on them before writing a post that defines my feelings about what I’ve purchased. I won’t beat around the bush. If they are meh, I’ll say it. Something in my gut is telling me otherwise.

Bon Vélo!

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10 thoughts on “Paying for a Brand Name?

  1. I’m sure you’ll love them! I fancy a set of 202’s myself. 🙂

    I’ve never had the pleasure of rolling on a set of Lightweights, but I’ve inspected and spun many a set at work and they are nothing short of LUSH! Certainly live up to their name too. The Lightweight rear disc and eight carbon spoke deep section front combo was mind blowing…

      1. Another thing . . . I saw a really great review of Zipp and said that riding a set of 202s (with all the tech put into the wheels) is like riding a 40-50mm wheel in relation to aero advantage. Good to know!

  2. Wow. Those are some mega hoops…
    The Meilenstein wheels would be….my absolute choice if I had the dough…
    Lightweight makes some incredible products. It’s the German engineering of course…seriously, there is none better. Sure the Italian engineering is gorgeous, belle, but the Germans are the most efficient, well-made products in the world.

    But the prices? man, overboard imo. Unless you’re making six figures, most name brand cycling products on the higher end ate unaffordable to the average bicycle rider.

    That includes yours truly, making about 15k a year. Yup, you read that right. That’s why I have bought mostly all Chinese products. Sure, if I could afford the Italian and German bike and parts, I’d whip out the credit card in a heartbeat…lol.

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