WTB: 50/52cm road bike

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chemicaldave
Participant
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I’m in the market for a road bike, but I’m not looking to spend too much. $500-600 is my upper range. I’m a bit hesitant to purchase such an expensive item 3rd hand with no warranty or even guarantee.

Are there any bike shops that sell used road bikes? Thick Bikes is the only one I see that advertises used sales. My other plan is to just call different stores and ask if they’ll be having a sale on old ’10 and ’11 year models now that winter is coming.

Any advice in general when purchasing a used road bike? My biggest worry is an owner not telling me about a crash or anything that might have compromised the integrity of the frame but not enough to show a crack or other outward signs of wear.


rice rocket
Participant
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The best part about buying new is (a) everything is new and not some unknown condition, (b) lifetime warranties on frames from most manufacturers for the original owner, and (c) there’s someone to get you fitted properly on your bike. I can’t tell you how many people I see on ill fitted bikes and haven’t got a clue. Of course you can always pay someone to fit you on your used bike, but figure that into your cost comparison.

Shop around and ride all the bikes you can, they all ride a little differently.


BradQ
Participant
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Basic advice

If you can, take a more knowledgeable friend with you.

Make sure it fits! Lots of people are willing to settle for a used bike that almost fits. Would you settle for shoes or pants that almost fit, even if they were an incredible deal? No—don’t buy a bike that almost fits either. Get one that does fit, you’ll enjoy it much more.

Otherwise, make sure you try to move that seatpost. Make sure the stem moves if it’s an older quill style. Look for signs it has been left outside—rust on the axle ends, hints of rust on the steerer, rust on the chain etc. Look for mismatched parts, like if everything is 10-speed 105 but the rear deraileur is an older mtb unit something is funny. At that price range I’d stay away from anything beyond a pristine looking carbon fork with aluminum steerer and axle end, other carbon stuff is either going to be new and cheap or old and abused, neither of which is a good idea.

New bikes in that price range do exist, and might be a more solid choice especially if you aren’t terribly bike savvy, as while it’s easy to get a good deal on a used bike there are some unscrupulous sellers out there.

One new bike you may want to look at is the Torker Interurban. Thick carries them.

http://urbanvelo.org/torker-interurban-first-impressions/


stefb
Participant
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Go to thick. I doubt that they will let you walk out of there with a bike that doesn’t fit well. But be honest with them, and tell them how knowledgeable or unknowledgeable you are about bikes. I doubt that thick would take advantage of your lack of knowledge.

My road bike is the right size for me, but I spent the money to go to Matt at upmc sports medicine and got fitted. He moved my cleats in and put wedges in one pair of my shoes, among other things. I brought my other shoes to him later on cause there was a huge difference between how the shoes felt.


brian j
Participant
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Brad, does that Torker have clearance for proper fenders (assuming the stock 28mm tires)? That’s a pretty intriguing bike, for sure.


edmonds59
Participant
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I bought a new bike once, in 2008, after 34 years of riding. It was an emotional purchase and I am still questioning the wisdom, definitely a big money loser. Point is, don’t be TOO afraid of used, you have to watch out for crash damage and corrosion issues on the frame, other than that, meh. Thick Bikes is highly recommended.

That Torker looks like a very cool bike. Doesn’t look like, eyeballing it, that casette has low enough gearing though, so might need an additional $30-$50 bucks to change that. It’s borderline irresponsible for manufacturers to even ship bikes to cities like Pgh with the same gearing as they would sell in say, Cleveland. Somebody needs to figure that out. Peeve.


brian j
Participant
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Edmonds, you make a good point. I’d be hard-pressed to buy a new bike at full retail (I got my current commuter for super cheep at ToP, and I think it’s worked out well). In the past ten years, I’ve purchased one new bike, and one new frame and fork (which I then built up from found/stashed parts). I’ve had multiple used bikes (road bike, ‘cross bike, several MTBs), and every one of them was a good purchase, and I didn’t lose much money (heck, I made money on one bike) when I resold them.


orionz06
Participant
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One thing to consider as well is the discount the store you purchase from may give on accessories, service, and fitting you might get. Most often stores will give you a tune up after it has broken in, some will give a fit for free too.


steevo
Participant
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Dont be afraid to go used. I am sure that Thick stand behind their sales of used bikes. Not only for liability reasons, but they are solid people and post here and have a stake in the Pittsburgh cycling community.

There is a world of difference between buying a 16lb carbon fiber full dura ace bike used, and a 10 year old steel bike with friction shifting. Parts made 10 years ago were heavier and longer lasting. I bought a touring bike used for 500 dollars and have well over 10k miles on it. However I have cracked high end frames that retail for 2k.


melange396
Participant
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@stefb if you dont mind me asking, how much did you pay for the upmc sports medicine fit?


cburch
Participant
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everything used that chris sells has been gone over multiple times and anything even slightly questionable is repaired or replaced before it goes on the sales floor.


chemicaldave
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everything used that chris sells

Did I miss something? Who is Chris?


Erica
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Chris owns Thick Bikes.


chemicaldave
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I see. Sounds like good people if members on the board refer to him by his first name.


Erica
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I’ve done 95% of my bike-related business with them. I definitely recommend.


chemicaldave
Participant
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Went to Thick and ended up buying a new 2011 Fuji Newest 3.0 at a discount. So much for staying in my budget, but then again I’m paying for quality.


rice rocket
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Performance Bike has been blowing out their Fuji Newests. The 3.0 was going for $499 last I checked…

Not that you shouldn’t support your local bike shops.


chemicaldave
Participant
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I am in favor of supporting the small guy. The attention to finding a good fit for me, added to a cash discount, plus the complementary 1st tune-up makes me not regret my decision. I know they have to make money somehow.


cdavey
Participant
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Your new bike is a durable consumer good. I believe and have usually found that with a durable consumer good you buy as good as you can afford (and maybe a little bit more if you really have to) and you won’t be disappointed over time. That’s why you spend the extra money to get the quality. Sounds like you did well, got what you wanted, and found a store you can trust. That’s a deal in my book!!


chemicaldave
Participant
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Performance Bike has been blowing out their Fuji Newests. The 3.0 was going for $499 last I checked…

I was checking out the performance bikes website to get the detailed specs on the 2011 and noticed the frame paint job was black/red instead of white/red like in the store. So I hop on over to Fuji’s bike archives.

Turns out that the 2011 Newest 3.0 at Performance Bikes is actually the 2010 model. Even the parts listing is different. No wonder it was so cheap.


rice rocket
Participant
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Performance Bike always has their own builds unique to them. Even the parts themselves often have a different spec than the rest of the market for some reason (i.e. the wheels Easton builds for them are different than what the rest of the market gets). Not sure what the deal is, but the manager at the local PB is on this forum, he’ll probably explain if you ask him.

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