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  1. #1
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
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    Flippers: A Rant (Sort of)

    Don't know if this is the appropriate place for this mini rant, but why not?

    I actually appreciate people who save otherwise serviceable bikes from the dump. And I appreciate people who check over the mechanicals, replace worn parts, clean bikes up, then look to make a profit off their labor. And I realize that there is nothing wrong, per se, with flipping.

    I actually saw the initial add and thought, that looks like, with a once over, maybe a tune up would make a nice commuter, or entry level bike for someone. Oddly enough, that same bike sat on CL for weeks until the seller dropped the price to $100. I know the original seller sold the bike Friday because I actually inquired about it, seller texted me back that he just sold the bike. No big deal, as an extra bike project is more a want than a need for me anyhow. Now the same bike is back up with a different seller for $250.

    So here is add A, posted Friday.
    http://milwaukee.craigslist.org/bik/4353697158.html
    Here is add B, posted this morning.
    http://milwaukee.craigslist.org/bik/4356249644.html

    So, I am not hopping mad, nor even disappointed I didn't rush out and get this bike, but mildly piqued.

  2. #2
    Senior Member howsteepisit's Avatar
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    Thats the price of free markets.
    Recycle, Reclaim, Reuse and Repair
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by howsteepisit View Post
    Thats the price of free markets.
    Correct.

  4. #4
    Senior Member longbeachgary's Avatar
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    Hey, it looks like he raised the seat....

  5. #5
    Senior Member Thumpic's Avatar
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    Why are you upset? Your opinion was that it needed a tune up and would be a good entry level bicycle. You say it sat on CL for weeks. Why didn't you buy it to flip? The buyer that is flipping it, may not even be a bike guy.

    There are items (including bikes) that I'll buy on Saturday and sell on Sunday. Doubling my money is a low to poor return on my investment.

    I am amused by the CL police (not necessarily you) who think they need to complain about pricing and immediate flipping. The value of any item is what someone will pay for it, so the general opinions of experts doesn't really matter. A young student on a budget is focused on price first. A hipster geek with a wad of cash cares about looks and what the other hipsters think. I can sell to both and make good money. Neither are concerned about where or when the bike was built.

    Many CL sellers do NO research on the value of their items. They want that crap out of their garage. Not my job to educate them. I buy cheap, sell high and turn quickly.
    Thumpic....

    Green is the new "CHEAP"

  6. #6
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    I get annoyed by this stuff sometimes too (mostly because I missed the deal!), but as mentioned it's a free market. Keep in mind it won't necessarily sell at that price, especially if it was up for a while with the old ad.

    I've bought bikes at a local pawn shop and put them on craigslist the same day for twice what I paid. Easy money.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  7. #7
    Member RacerNo.7's Avatar
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    I only get mad at flippers when someone buys the bike I was planning on flipping and, you've guessed it, that person flips it.

  8. #8
    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    MRT2, show some compassion, the flipper needs to improve his home. Worn out, fake, parquet vinyl tile, a peeling and unpainted door, and evidence he's still using a desktop computer.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving. Albert Einstein
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  9. #9
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    I wouldn't be too upset. This particular person doesn't appear to know what they're doing. Rigid mountain bikes are a dime a dozen and it was worth around $100-$150. There is no way they will get $250, especially with that sorry ad. The only reason I'd be peaved is that now I'd have to look at that ad for the next year.

  10. #10
    Senior Member trailmix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by likebike23 View Post
    I wouldn't be too upset. This particular person doesn't appear to know what they're doing. Rigid mountain bikes are a dime a dozen and it was worth around $100-$150. There is no way they will get $250, especially with that sorry ad. The only reason I'd be peaved is that now I'd have to look at that ad for the next year.
    Too funny, I think he would be lucky to get 150 for it.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by likebike23 View Post
    I wouldn't be too upset. This particular person doesn't appear to know what they're doing. Rigid mountain bikes are a dime a dozen and it was worth around $100-$150. There is no way they will get $250, especially with that sorry ad. The only reason I'd be peaved is that now I'd have to look at that ad for the next year.
    +1

    They clog the local CL as well.

    It gets old.

  12. #12
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    Buy low, try to sell high. That's the name of the game.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member zukahn1's Avatar
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    Well this one is actually kinda funny the guy flipped the bike around and took somewhat better pic from the drive side and expects to get a $150 more for the bike. This one will sit on CL for a long time.

  14. #14
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    I kind of get a kick out of this frustration. Two guys from Iowa, pile into their van, drive all over buying really low, and selling high (higher than retail). They typically do nothing to their items, just resell them. They mark stuff up typically hundreds to thousands of dollars. Meanwhile, some guy from Milwaukee spots a deal on a bike, hops into his van and picks it up, hoping to make $100, $150 tops.

    The first pair get their own TV show, basically a 30 minute infomercial, promoting their business. Other than being better at picking, what they do is different how?

    The market tends to be self correcting. If this guy asks too much (I think price is high), he will tie up his money waiting for a buyer. Eventually he either lowers his price, or gets lucky. After a few frustrating deals like that, he moves on to other items to flip.

    The C/L spamming does get tiring.
    Last edited by wrk101; 03-02-14 at 06:03 PM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Thumpic's Avatar
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    +10000000!
    Thumpic....

    Green is the new "CHEAP"

  16. #16
    Must... ride... more... Phil_gretz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    MRT2, show some compassion, the flipper needs to improve his home. Worn out, fake, parquet vinyl tile, a peeling and unpainted door, and evidence he's still using a desktop computer.
    Really. Looks like Ted Kaczynski's cabin...

  17. #17
    Vello Kombi, baby Poguemahone's Avatar
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    I've trouble getting too upset about this. I don't control other people, at least not very well. And I've found interesting bikes come to those that wait. People are free to charge whatever they want, and they often choose to charge ridiculous prices no one will pay. All this means is you get to wade through their ads on CL and ebay, the same ones over and over, for months on end. Although this may seem like a not-so-special gift from ol' scratch himself, I can think of worse fates.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member
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    Ehhhh. There's a local guy here who does the same thing. I'm not sure he ever sells anything, as he lists the same bikes on CL EVERY TWO DAYS. I find the constant spamming from him on CL more annoying than anything else.

  19. #19
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nesteel View Post
    Ehhhh. There's a local guy here who does the same thing. I'm not sure he ever sells anything, as he lists the same bikes on CL EVERY TWO DAYS. I find the constant spamming from him on CL more annoying than anything else.
    There's a few of those in the Madison C/L. I have no problem with people asking whatever crazy prices they want (the only issue with that is other people believing THEIR crap is worth those prices too) but the spamming I take issue with. If you post the same dozen things every two days for a year, doesn't that make you think something might be wrong??? At that point though I think it meets the definition of insanity, so there's no helping those idiots.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  20. #20
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    One of my first rules of flipping bikes is to wait at least a couple months if my end game is to sell it on the same craigslist where I bought it.

    I find it works well to help deter the fussy sour grapes emails and counterpoint CL ads (LOVE THOSE- never been on the receiving end, just hate seeing them clog up my quiet little craigslist) from people what missed the boat the first time around.

    e: wait, why is the first ad still up?

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  21. #21
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
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    Thanks, guys for the feedback. If it doesn't sell by the end of the month, maybe I will offer the guy $100.

  22. #22
    back in the saddle bent-not-broken's Avatar
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    I think $100 was a fair price (no steal here). The only problem I have is if the second person represents as ready to ride without any service.
    Bent

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  23. #23
    Senior Member Thumpic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
    Thanks, guys for the feedback. If it doesn't sell by the end of the month, maybe I will offer the guy $100.
    Unless you're getting it to ride; $100 is too much for a flip.....
    Thumpic....

    Green is the new "CHEAP"

  24. #24
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thumpic View Post
    Unless you're getting it to ride; $100 is too much for a flip.....
    I am not a flipper. I would get it as a backup bike, perhaps a summer grocery getter, and for out of town guests, who generally prefer this style of bike to, say, old school road bikes.

  25. #25
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    I am occasional flipper - usually when deal is too good to pass. I try to keep the bikes I like but sometimes it does not work out and I sell them. I am only mad at other flippers when I miss the deal :-) For example this gorgeous Ritchey was posted for $50, ~1 hr drive away from me. I was first in line but could not make it the same day. Well known seller on local CL got it from under my nose for $175. Now it is on our CL for $475 - http://toronto.en.craigslist.ca/tor/bik/4358341353.html. From what I gather (I asked original seller) - he told him he is a collector and offered more. I asked the guy to txt me if anything changes (would have matched $175 offer for sure) but he either did not understand it or did not bother figuring $175 in hands today is better then waiting for tomorrow. Oh well - such is life, you miss some deals and get other

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