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Old 10-16-08, 06:49 PM   #1
ilovechicago
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Ripped off on first bike - will it fall apart? Murray.

I got on a bike for the first time in 13 years the other day, and it felt so good, i decided to buy one for myself. The long and short of it is that I didn't do my research and had no one to consult with/accompany me to purchase, didn't realize there were super ****ty bikes out there, and trusted the person I was buying from. Price seemed about what everything was going for on Craigslist, so I paid $75 for...a Murray. Didn't even look at the brand until I got home - figured it rode okay, was a good size for me (i'm short), was fine. Now I'm seeing that they're apparently worth about $2 and utter pieces of ****. I'm afraid to ride it...will it fall apart? Will the brakes fail, wheels fall off, chain come undone while I'm in the middle of traffic? I can barely ride a bike as it is, the last thing I need after getting f'ed out of $75 bucks is to have my bike disintegrate while i'm riding it. I will feel a bit better if I at least know it will get me to the grocery store and book shop on a regular basis.
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Old 10-16-08, 07:00 PM   #2
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Take some detailed pictures of the bike and post them here on the board for us to review. If there is anything obviously wrong with the bike we'll point it out to you.

Get pictures of the brakes, cable, wheels and tires, chain, saddle. Note any rust on the bike and send pictures of that too. And finally, a few pictures of the entire bike from the right side like this:



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Old 10-16-08, 07:06 PM   #3
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I suspect it won't fall apart while you're riding it. While Murrays (and Huffys and Rosses and probably several others that don't come to mind at the moment) were cheap, heavy, and sloppily put together, they didn't commonly disintegrate out from under you (although I'm sure somebody will come along with a story of one that did but I'm just as sure that somebody's Cinelli fell apart too). It will probably require more maintenance, truing the wheels, adjusting the brakes and derailleurs and such but I do not believe it is unsafe.
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Old 10-16-08, 07:09 PM   #4
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had a murray for years.
Not the nicest bike I had but worked for short trips.
it was a coaster brake.
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Old 10-16-08, 07:12 PM   #5
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If it's your size it's worth $50. If you like the color, it's worth another $20. You only got jipped for $5. Take what you make per hour and divide it by $5 to find out exactly how many minutes of fun you need to have for it to pay itself off. Go out and have at least that many minutes of fun.

I'd been riding a Huffy, just because I had just moved and didn't have a bike and this one was free. I saved up and bought a Raleigh, got it home and thought it looked a lot like my Huffy. A little research and I found out that Raleigh (USA) was a Huffy thing.
The Raleigh was (is) a prettier color.
Size does matter. If it fits you, you did ok.
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Old 10-16-08, 07:49 PM   #6
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If you're in Chicago, you're in a large market. That usually means higher prices. Still, post pics and lets see what can be done. Many of us, myself included have purchased bikes we thought were in great shape only to find they were not. It's not something to get too upset over. The objective should be to get you riding.
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Old 10-16-08, 07:56 PM   #7
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Although it will probably not preform as well as a more expensive bike, it will very likely be reliable.
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Old 10-16-08, 08:00 PM   #8
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If the bike rides well, has good tires and the mechanical stuff is ok don't bother feeling bad about what you paid. Ride it - and keep looking for a better bike to take its place. It may not have the ride quality of a more expensive brand/model, but plenty of people use old department store bikes to get around everyday.
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Old 10-16-08, 08:17 PM   #9
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+1 While it is a POS, at $75, you did fine. Really decent bikes can and usually do cost quite a bit more on Craigs List. So ride the heck out of it, and once it wears out, donate it to the charity of your choice. I took a quick look at Chicago C/L, and I didn't see any decent bikes at that price. Heck, the ones titled "winter beater" or similar were around $200.

In the meantime, save up for a better bike and keep looking, particularly at thrift shops and garage sales. Thats where the best deals tend to be. But most of those will require some work, sometimes a lot of work (thats one reason people donate the bike, its broken, tired, whatever. If it was in primo, ready to ride condition, they probably would either keep it or give it to a friend).


A good bike on C/L in a market like Chicago is going to cost a few hundred minimum. And you should expect some/many of them to need some work, particularly the really good deals. Some people donate their tired bikes, others put them on Craigs List to sell them. Puruse the Craigs List postings in your area, and you will start recognizing ads from flippers. These are people that pick up the thrift store and other bikes that need work (but are cheap), clean them up, refurbish them, and resell them. Sometimes those bikes go for about what a good tuneup would cost at the local bike shop. So it can be a win/win.
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Old 10-16-08, 08:58 PM   #10
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i have two murrays in the other room and ride either or to work everyday with out any problem. have owned like 4 other murrays, mainly mountain bikes, and they were haevy but they do not fall apart. my current two murrays are both cruisers, one i converted to deraillur gears and the other a newer ss cruiser. they ride great. an expensive bike can fall apart like a cheap one, it's how they are maintained. you didn't get screwed.

i actually find cheap bikes easy to service. and as for one piece ashtabula cranks, they are heavy but bullit proof. i weigh 200lbs and the bikes are plenty sturdy. don't freak.
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Old 10-17-08, 12:00 PM   #11
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Thank you so much for the advice and reassurance. I will take some photos and post them as soon as I get a chance. The bike does look like it was not ridden much - as if someone just kept it in their garage for a super long time, so that is a bonus. I'll take the view that its a good bike to learn how to ride on, and much more fun and cost effective than a gym membership. Thanks again for the positive reinforcement. <3
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Old 10-17-08, 12:05 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovechicago View Post
Thank you so much for the advice and reassurance. I will take some photos and post them as soon as I get a chance. The bike does look like it was not ridden much - as if someone just kept it in their garage for a super long time, so that is a bonus. I'll take the view that its a good bike to learn how to ride on, and much more fun and cost effective than a gym membership. Thanks again for the positive reinforcement. <3
Worth repeating!
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Old 10-17-08, 12:11 PM   #13
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I don't know how much you pay for petrol in the US (sorry, gasoline!), but I know it's a lot cheaper than here. Even so, if you use your bike for those short trips, especially in traffic where cars & motorbikes seem to become 'gasaholics', it will quickly have paid for itself and then you can start using the money you aren't spending on so much fuel to save for another bike. A Murray may not be the best, but it's still a bike - and that's what it's all about! I admit I forget that myself sometimes and become so absorbed in 'carbon this' and 'Campag that' that I risk missing out on the fun of cheap travel. Enjoy your bike!
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Old 10-17-08, 12:13 PM   #14
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You could have done MUCH worse!
I see Roadmasters on CL for that price.
They're $50 new at Wal Mart!
Enjoy your bike. No matter WHAT you buy, you'll second guess yourself later to some extent. A first bike is a learning experience anyway. Later on, you'll probably want something that will work little better for your specific needs. You can then sell the Murray and recoup much of your investment.
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Old 10-17-08, 12:18 PM   #15
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I wouldn't worry about it man. I used to have (and still have) a huffy mountain bike that cost like 100 bucks new in 1999. I rode the crap out if it everyday for years and never had a problem with it. It's a bottom of the line bike, but it gets the job done. If anything, it may need a few tune-ups every once and a while, and hey, that could be fun and we'll help you with them!
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Old 10-17-08, 01:08 PM   #16
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Check out West Town Bikes, and take a class on bike repair. That's the single best way to reduce the cost of a decent bike. You'll eliminate (or at least reduce) the cost of repairs and, at the same time, learn what makes a decent bike (which will make you a more informed consumer the next time you go to buy a bike).

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Old 10-17-08, 04:58 PM   #17
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A bargain!

Very pretty. How does it ride. If you don't like the way it rides I'll trade for my Univega that cost $80.00
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