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Equipment Outfitting a serious gym. Vendors & suppliers. Devices & equipment

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Old 02-07-2008, 03:36 AM   #1
Jason Borzych
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Cheap Bikes

Hey guys quick question.
If all I am doing is riding a bike on the street for a workout is there anything wrong with the $50-150 bike at wal-mart what do i really gain as I go up in price into the hundreds to thousands of dollar price range. Will the wal-mart bike fall apart. I understand you get what you pay for, but do you think I need to pay a lot or will one of these suit me fine
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Old 02-07-2008, 04:20 AM   #2
Bryan McWilliams
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Re: Cheap Bikes

Before you buy a wal mart junker, watch Craig's list for a few days.

Here in the Raleigh area dozens of bikes go up every day. Many of them in your price range. I have seen 20 year old bikes that looked like new. A used quality ike with quality components is a better deal.
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Old 02-07-2008, 07:19 AM   #3
Wade Smith
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Re: Cheap Bikes

Don't buy at Walmart. Craigslist is an excellent choice. Also, check your region for "used bike stores" or stores that carry used or consignment bikes. Also, when it starts warming up, check your local garage sales. One of my bikes is an old (but good) steel road bike I paid $5 for (they had a $10 tag on it, but I offered $5).

There are an enormous amount of exercise equipment (including bikes) that people buy with good intentions but never or rarely use. With patience and a good eye (and luck), you can pick up an awesome bike for cheap. It might take some time though. Good luck.
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Old 02-07-2008, 07:40 AM   #4
Chris Drewry
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Re: Cheap Bikes

Ive had my eye on bikes for a while, been searching craigslist... But I have no Idea what makes a good bike.. good brand.. etc.

Any pointers?
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Old 02-07-2008, 09:00 AM   #5
Craig Brown
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Re: Cheap Bikes

The best source of cheap decent bikes is some universities have surplus dpts (NAU's was killer for bikes and computers)- end of summer, they cut loose the bikes that were left behind, rack em up, and sell them cheap.

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Old 02-07-2008, 11:30 PM   #6
Jason Borzych
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Re: Cheap Bikes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Brown View Post
The best source of cheap decent bikes is some universities have surplus dpts (NAU's was killer for bikes and computers)- end of summer, they cut loose the bikes that were left behind, rack em up, and sell them cheap.

Craig
great tip...

Yeah I would also like to know what I should be looking for in a bike that will make it better than those wal-mart bikes
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Old 02-08-2008, 03:57 AM   #7
Bryan McWilliams
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Re: Cheap Bikes

What to look for?

Components - shimano, campagnolo, on really old bikes (70's - eaarly 80's simplex) derailers (the components that shift gears)

Look for cased welds - on a steel frame, the welds should have a steel "jacket" around them; a case that covers the welded steel joint. Stay away from steel frames where the butt joints are visible. It's ok though in quality aluminum frames. You won't likely see many aluminum frames in your price range

Cotterless cranks - a lot of 70's - early 80's bikes have cottered cranks. There is a cotter pin and bolt that holds the crank (the arm of the pedal ) onto the bottom bracket. These can be difficult to re-install should you remove a crank. Doesn't make it a crappy bike, (I had a Bottechia with cottered cranks). Cotterless is superior.

Brands, raleigh (through the mid - 80's - Huffy owns the name now), Puch, Motobecane, Fuji, Giant, Trek, Cannondale, Lotus, Gitane, Bridgestone, Panasonic, newer Schwinns, many others.

avoid 70's low end Schwinn's, Huffys, Murrays,

Here are some good examples (w/f/s)
http://raleigh.craigslist.org/bik/565829686.html

http://raleigh.craigslist.org/bik/563736589.html

http://raleigh.craigslist.org/bik/561022949.html

More on bikes from the late Sheldon Brown,

www.sheldonbrown.com
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Old 02-08-2008, 09:29 AM   #8
Craig Brown
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Re: Cheap Bikes

Depending on terrain, it's more about fit and decent parts. If you are looking at long hilly rides you might have more to worry about. I'd do a search for used bikes in you area, or call The Recyclery in Evanston for pointers.

Craig
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Old 02-08-2008, 11:23 AM   #9
Ryan McLaughlin
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Re: Cheap Bikes

I whole heartedly agree at avoiding walmart or department store bikes.

Another significant reason is durability. Specifically, wheel durability. It is amazing how quickly department store bike wheels go out of true and start rubbing your brake pads. Not to mention breaking spokes, and eventually totaly wheel failure (taco'ing the wheel). Wheels are critical, and they require some knowledge, and skills to repair. Which likely means you will hate your walmart bike soon, and have to pay someone to work on the wheels.

Not to mention many other things that will fail very quickly, even with relatively light use. The cranks are another thing that come to mind.

Craig's list is a great resource for getting a good bike at usually half or more off it's original value.

Another thing that was brought up, is your intended use. If you are going off road.......it's conceivable that a walmart bike could be destroyed in one ride. And potentially hurt the rider.

Good luck....and be patient.
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Old 02-08-2008, 11:25 AM   #10
David Stitz
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Re: Cheap Bikes

I would steer away from Wal-Mart bikes. I work at a bike shop in Missouri and I can't tell you how many people come in with busted up bikes from Wallyworld, not to mention no one at Wal-Mart knows how to fit someone properly on a bike. Like others said, there's lots of great deals on Craigslist, and if you decide to buy new, buy from a shop. Ask about service policies, the shop I work at gives a lifetime service plan with every bike we sell, so if you spend $250 on a bike, you can have our mechanics tune it up($50 value) as often as you see fit, for as long as you own the bike. If you do choose to buy a bike from Wal-Mart (seriously, you would probably regret doing it), stay away from their full suspension models because there is just more components to break and the suspension gives you the feeling you can jump stuff, when in fact those bikes are not made for that.
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