Is the old bike hobby growing or will it die out?

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squeedals

I live for the CABE
Like any thing, we tend to be drawn to familiar objects that remind us of our youth, although, I'm attracted to anything older than me and I'm 60-ish. Fairly new to the hobby, over 3 years now, but I've always liked the old bikes. Recently I bought my 1st TOC bike and I'm rounding the corner on the resto and I'm sure there will be more to come. Somehow, though, I wonder just how far this bike collecting hobby will go. Is the younger generations into them like we are? Prices seem to go with demand. The wife and I have been collecting antiques for many moons and I wonder if that hobby or passion will die with the people that love them? I remember my parents HATING antiques, dad born in 1913 and mom, 1920. They bought an old house when they got married in 1943 and mom cleared out all the antiques in a yard sale......and filled the house with contemporary stuff. Now those antiques are once again, "in" but for how long? I have a feeling some day our cherished bicycles will be unwanted relics (I truly hope not). Thoughts?
 

Gary Mc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
I see younger members continuing to come into the hobby so I don't think it's going to die anytime soon. I actually think we may see it grow. The economy and where it's headed will play a role in how tight peoples money is. Look at the California scene, it seems to be growing there. People get their kids involved in it today and those kids will continue it as they grow into adulthood as they reminisce about childhood memories of biking with their families. With fossil fuel costs rising, we may at some point see a resurgence in bicycling period as well as smaller villages with city centers. There is a neat trend going on in certain areas of America such as the Florida panhandle with small city centers and surrounding villages that make cycling fun, easy, and attractive. Florida's Hwy 30A is an example of around 10 town centers along the coast such as Seaside & Rosemary Beach along a 19 mile connected bicycle route. People go to this area specifically to slow down to a much slower pace and to step back in time, where they can bike for entertainment/relaxation, bike to get to the pub, bike to a restaurant, or bike to shops, and generally just to go back to a simpler way of life if only for a week at a time. There are literally thousands of bikes there. While this is a tourist destination at this point, developers are starting to spread the idea across America where we will see a resurgence in both smaller old and new town centers where goods, restaurants, and services most needed are available locally by bike or walking. This is beginning to happen in Atlanta as old town centers are seeing a resurgence and a subsequent resurgence in biking. Here so far it's mostly new road & city bikes but that is mostly because there are so few antique bicycle collectors here which I think will change over time. This may take years but I think it is largely where we are headed long term if the country survives & prospers. When people in areas such as these see old bikes, they are amazed, so us just riding our old bikes in areas such as this will help the hobby grow. You know there will always be people out there who think these old bikes are just cool, I want one, and will seek us out as they see them…..

My rambling 2 cents on this …….

PS, I'm 53 and drawn more to TOC-1930 bikes long before my time as well.
 
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squeedals

I live for the CABE
While I agree Gary on the growing biking trend.......I think that is mostly the modern bikes (mountain, racers, beach cruisers). There are some younger folks joining the CABE, I have a feeling most of us are...well.....the older variety. This is what I was talking about. 10 or 20 years ago......yes, not a lot of classic and TOC bike enthusiasts and I'm sure you could buy an old bike for a song, ones we would pay BIG bucks for today (like the old car hobby) and now, with the NET and eBay, prices are climbing, but for how long. Supply and demand. Where will the hobby be in 20......30 years.
 

tailhole

I live for the CABE
Growing

I sold a few old bikes to a kid in high school recently. He brought over 2 other high school friends, they all collect and have 20 bikes between them. They are eager to learn and save their money for bicycles. It's refreshing to see new, young folks interested. Not just us grouchy old farts. And I like these guys cause they ride the bikes. I'll always be a rider first, collector second.
 

Dan the bike man

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Suspended
I'm 28 and I own bikes from 1916-1971. I love the 50's balloon tank bikes, but I also love the 1800's to 1930 wood rim bikes! Dispite my young age these DO remind me of when I was a kid! My dad collected old bikes and he let me ride them as he knew I would be careful with them. I would say the hobby will keep going strong, HOWEVER I feel the bikes $1,000-$5,000 will come down in value a little, at least for a short time as older collections are sold and younger buyers don't want to spend that much. The top-end mega rare bikes will stay up and the lower value bikes (under $1,000 ) will also stay strong. I have seen this with other hobbies. I for one stand ready with cash to buy bikes, but I'm looking for a really good deal! I think that's the trend.
 

Obi-Wan Schwinnobi

Riding a '38 Autocycle Deluxe
I'm 28 and I own bikes from 1916-1971. I love the 50's balloon tank bikes, but I also love the 1800's to 1930 wood rim bikes! Dispite my young age these DO remind me of when I was a kid! My dad collected old bikes and he let me ride them as he knew I would be careful with them. I would say the hobby will keep going strong, HOWEVER I feel the bikes $1,000-$5,000 will come down in value a little, at least for a short time as older collections are sold and younger buyers don't want to spend that much. The top-end mega rare bikes will stay up and the lower value bikes (under $1,000 ) will also stay strong. I have seen this with other hobbies. I for one stand ready with cash to buy bikes, but I'm looking for a really good deal! I think that's the trend.

I hope it dies.. Then ill get all the cool stuff for cheap and hoard it away!
 

redline1968

Riding a '38 Autocycle Deluxe
I've been in to bikes for 25 yrs now. Seems. Like more interest in toc moto bikes and track bikes now. Use to be I could pick them up for 200 complete. Everything else has stayed close to the same I price except the ultra rare bikes in my opinion.
 
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