I have owned my Marin Bear Valley bike since about 1993 so that’s 22 years , and I think that’s rather a long time especially considering the number of bikes that pass through our garage .
From what I know it had a sad start to its life as it was lent by the local Marin dealer to a Toyota dealership who had it on display fitted to a roof rack assembly on a car in their showroom. At some point it was vandalized whilst there and sustained two slashed tyres and various bits of the decals were also picked off . It was removed from display and left in the stores department . Once I had served my three months probationary period I enquired if I could purchase it and was told to submit a written offer and if this was accepted the bike would be mine.
My offer of £250 was accepted at once which I thought gave me a bit of a bargain as they were retailing at over £500 at the time from what I was told . A couple of new tyres and tubes later and we were off on an adventure that is still going strong to this day .
It’s never had a hard life , for the first 3 years in my ownership it was used mainly at weekends for various on road only rides that were never any further than 25 miles in length. It did get taken for a weeks holiday riding around the Isle of Mull one year . It then spent 10 + years wallowing in my parents garage unused as time was limited with a family coming along .
It was bought back in to service for my daily commute approximately 8 years ago and has carried on either being my main commuter trudging up and down the local cycle paths backwards and forwards to work or one of my back up bikes . During its life it has had various consumable parts replaced but still sits on the original wheels , crankset , mechanisms, bars , seat post and brifter units .
The paintwork is still original and most of the decals on one side have long gone whilst the other side are only partially gone , I must admit I have considered replacing the decals a few times but have never actually done it .
I have found this bike to be great fun to ride and it normally always puts a smile on my face when I am riding it .