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  1. #1
    Junior Member Alfred's Avatar
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    Looking to purchase a bike

    I recently posted this over on the commuter page and someone suggested re-post it here as well to see if I could get another view point. I am looking to get into riding and my price range tends to be around 200. This puts me at purchasing an older bike. I have found someone that locally fixes up older bikes and sells them.

    His Link: http://s1036.photobucket.com/albums/...01/For%20Sale/

    I am looking for a bike that has a good frame that I could eventually fix up and make it my own. I know little to nothing about bikes and am just looking for some direction. I have had some suggestions on what bikes may fit me well, but I was wondering if any of these older bikes could be diamonds in the rough.
    Adam
    Eastern Standard Time

  2. #2
    No, your OTHER left!! bikenut2011's Avatar
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    Link did not work for me.
    What kind of riding will you be doing? road? light trails? rough trails? what is the tallest frame you could stand over in comfort?

    andy
    Bike Hoarder in Training :)

    1988 Schwinn Circuit (Red, White, 'n' Chrome... American made Hot Rod! )
    1986 Schwinn Prelude now a 14 spd (survivor bike, almost mint)
    2009 Motobecane 27 spd Flat bar (too small for me, now wifey's ride)
    2011 Motobecane 18 spd Cross Bike turned road bike (my "modern" ride)
    1973 Schwinn Continental... 36 pounds and yellow (for my son) :)

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  3. #3
    Fuji Fan beech333's Avatar
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    For 70s-80s, Japanese bikes tend to be the best bang for the buck. Of course, $10 Paramounts are also out there, but they tend to be harder to find.

    ps. Link does not work for me either.
    Seeking a 165mm Sugino Super Mighty track crankset.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Alfred's Avatar
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    I am looking for a good road bike for commuting. I would like to find a bike with a good frame that has potential. I figure the money I save riding instead of driving could go into customizing and improving the bike, but I need a good start. My budget is around $200. I know nothing about brands or types of bikes. I am going to go test ride some this week at local shops to try and determine a good size for me. What's a good starting size for someone that is 5'9?

    He sent me this link to his just started website.

    www.oldbikesbelong.com
    Adam
    Eastern Standard Time

  5. #5
    No, your OTHER left!! bikenut2011's Avatar
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    the 52cm raleigh w/ brooks and the 54cm premis on that site look pretty promising to me. I really have no idea if his prices for them are inline with what they are worth, but they don't seem too crazy. Either would probably fit you pretty good, with the larger 54cm size probably being better. You could possibly even go 56cm. You want the largest frame that you can stand over in comfort. Avoid stem shifter bikes, they are usually lower grade and heavier than downtube shifter bikes.

    andy
    Bike Hoarder in Training :)

    1988 Schwinn Circuit (Red, White, 'n' Chrome... American made Hot Rod! )
    1986 Schwinn Prelude now a 14 spd (survivor bike, almost mint)
    2009 Motobecane 27 spd Flat bar (too small for me, now wifey's ride)
    2011 Motobecane 18 spd Cross Bike turned road bike (my "modern" ride)
    1973 Schwinn Continental... 36 pounds and yellow (for my son) :)

    My C&V pics here
    My daily mile page is here

  6. #6
    No, your OTHER left!! bikenut2011's Avatar
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    The 56cm ROSS bike doesnt look half bad, but damn, you would think they could clean up that freewheel and chain and put a little OIL on them!!

    andy
    Bike Hoarder in Training :)

    1988 Schwinn Circuit (Red, White, 'n' Chrome... American made Hot Rod! )
    1986 Schwinn Prelude now a 14 spd (survivor bike, almost mint)
    2009 Motobecane 27 spd Flat bar (too small for me, now wifey's ride)
    2011 Motobecane 18 spd Cross Bike turned road bike (my "modern" ride)
    1973 Schwinn Continental... 36 pounds and yellow (for my son) :)

    My C&V pics here
    My daily mile page is here

  7. #7
    Fuji Fan beech333's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred View Post
    What's a good starting size for someone that is 5'9?[/url]
    Throwing out my best estimate, 54cm.
    Seeking a 165mm Sugino Super Mighty track crankset.

  8. #8
    OCD Moderator cb400bill's Avatar
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    Those mid 80's Schwinn bikes can be nice riders. My concern is with the rust by the top tube cable clips.



    I don't know much about the Ross bike but I like the colors and it appears to be in nice shape. It may be a little to large, though.

    Last edited by cb400bill; 01-22-11 at 06:55 PM.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikenut2011 View Post
    the 52cm raleigh w/ brooks and the 54cm premis on that site look pretty promising to me. I really have no idea if his prices for them are inline with what they are worth, but they don't seem too crazy. Either would probably fit you pretty good, with the larger 54cm size probably being better. You could possibly even go 56cm.
    Maybe I'm crazy, but being 5'6-7"ish, I ride a 54cm. I would think at 5'9" he definitely wouldn't want to go any smaller than that. I wouldn't be too comfortable for long on a 52cm. I can ride a 56, though without much clearance on the TT. I'd think he should try out some 56cm. Then 54cm if he finds he wants a little more aggressive position. Largest he can stand over in comfort is probably 57-58cm I would think. (Unless I just have freakishly long legs?) Sounds like he's best off going with the largest comfortable for commuting on it, not a race position.
    Last edited by 3speed; 01-22-11 at 07:02 PM.

  10. #10
    No, your OTHER left!! bikenut2011's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3speed View Post
    Maybe I'm crazy, but being 5'6-7"ish, I ride a 54cm. I would think at 5'9" he definitely wouldn't want to go any smaller than that. I wouldn't be too comfortable for long on a 52cm. I can ride a 56, though without much clearance on the TT. I'd think he should try out some 56cm. Then 54cm if he finds he wants a little more aggressive position. Largest he can stand over in comfort is probably 57-58cm I would think. (Unless I just have freakishly long legs?) Sounds like he's best off going with the largest comfortable for commuting on it, not a race position.
    You're right, i ride a 58 and could go larger, i'm 5'10". 56cm would probably be the best fit for him, but like i said, he should get the biggest frame he can stand over comfortably. I don't know what i was thinking when i threw out that 52cm raleigh... I think i was blinded by the saddle

    andy
    Bike Hoarder in Training :)

    1988 Schwinn Circuit (Red, White, 'n' Chrome... American made Hot Rod! )
    1986 Schwinn Prelude now a 14 spd (survivor bike, almost mint)
    2009 Motobecane 27 spd Flat bar (too small for me, now wifey's ride)
    2011 Motobecane 18 spd Cross Bike turned road bike (my "modern" ride)
    1973 Schwinn Continental... 36 pounds and yellow (for my son) :)

    My C&V pics here
    My daily mile page is here

  11. #11
    Junior Member Alfred's Avatar
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    I need to get on some bikes and see what works best. I'm not accustom to the metric measuring system they have so I really need to see them up close. I'm going to go to our local Schwinn shop and look at some to get a feel. Last time I was in there they only had maybe 2 bikes less than $1000 and they where both over $700. I can't bring myself to pay more for a bike than I did for my daily driver. I know in the long run the bike will pay for itself, but I still have to put up the money up front.

    I have a 33 inch inseam. I guess I should probably start with a larger bike and work my way down till I feel comfortable. He also says he has some bikes in the works and after speaking with him a bit he seems like he's willing to help me get a bike set up if he doesn't already have something that works. I have probably a month before it's going to warm up enough to start riding. I used to ride year round but if I'm going to get back into it I need for it to be enjoyable for the first couple months. Then I'll be in good shape when the winter comes and the suffering begins.
    Adam
    Eastern Standard Time

  12. #12
    Senior Member CMC SanDiego's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred View Post
    I have a 33 inch inseam.
    I'd start by trying a 56, 57, or 58cm frame. I'm 5'9" with a 32 inseam and I stand over 55-56cm best. I have one 58cm which I can ride comfortably, just not stand over comfortably. But since I spend most of my time in the saddle it hasn't been a problem.

    Keep lurking here and reading about bikes, and you'll find the ones that are considered good quality, and which to avoid.

    Someone above mentioned Japanese bikes as a good value for the money and I agree. I'd start by looking for a Univega, Nishiki, Centurion, Fuji, or Miyata. And as someone stated, downtube shifters usually indicate a higher quality/lighter bike than stem shifters. Bar-end shifters are usually a good sign also.

    CMC

  13. #13
    SE Wis dedhed's Avatar
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    Lots of good info here too.

    http://www.mytenspeeds.com/My_TenSpeeds_1/
    '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400

  14. #14
    No, your OTHER left!! bikenut2011's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred View Post
    I need to get on some bikes and see what works best. I'm not accustom to the metric measuring system they have so I really need to see them up close. I'm going to go to our local Schwinn shop and look at some to get a feel. Last time I was in there they only had maybe 2 bikes less than $1000 and they where both over $700. I can't bring myself to pay more for a bike than I did for my daily driver. I know in the long run the bike will pay for itself, but I still have to put up the money up front.

    I have a 33 inch inseam. I guess I should probably start with a larger bike and work my way down till I feel comfortable. He also says he has some bikes in the works and after speaking with him a bit he seems like he's willing to help me get a bike set up if he doesn't already have something that works. I have probably a month before it's going to warm up enough to start riding. I used to ride year round but if I'm going to get back into it I need for it to be enjoyable for the first couple months. Then I'll be in good shape when the winter comes and the suffering begins.

    Bear in mind that your local bike store will be selling "compact" frames in all likelihood, and the ones on the page you showed us were "traditional" geometry frames. So... you won't really be able to guage your fit on a traditional frame going by what the bike shop has. Just do some trial and error and ride some different sizes. If you have a true 33" standover, a 58cm traditional frame might be a very good fit for you. Good Luck!!

    andy
    Bike Hoarder in Training :)

    1988 Schwinn Circuit (Red, White, 'n' Chrome... American made Hot Rod! )
    1986 Schwinn Prelude now a 14 spd (survivor bike, almost mint)
    2009 Motobecane 27 spd Flat bar (too small for me, now wifey's ride)
    2011 Motobecane 18 spd Cross Bike turned road bike (my "modern" ride)
    1973 Schwinn Continental... 36 pounds and yellow (for my son) :)

    My C&V pics here
    My daily mile page is here

  15. #15
    Senior Member cycleheimer's Avatar
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    Besides a road bike, you may also want to look at older hybrids (i.e. "CX", "cross-over", "fitness", etc.), better quality non-suspension mountain bikes, and "true" touring bikes (if you can stumble across one at a good price) with cantilever brakes, triple chainwheels, extra spoke count in the rear wheel, and braze-ons for water bottles, racks, etc. Some websites for pricing and specifications by make and model:
    http://bike.jaxed.com/cgi-bin/bike.c...&itm=centurion
    http://www.bikepedia.com/

    Info on bike sizing:
    http://www.sierratradingpost.com/lp2...fit-guide.html

    Good reading:
    http://www.bicycling.com/

    Places to look online for good deals on parts and accessories...you will have to figure in some expense for accessories (bell, bags, tools, etc.). These guys have sales every now and then, so it is always good to check their websites (or others you may find) for bargains. Nashbar and Performance often have great sales promotions.
    http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/TopCate...Site-_-Nashbar
    http://www.niagaracycle.com/
    http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...10052_10551_-1

    Besides your LBS, you can get good deals (when their is a special promotion going on) for new bikes at Nashbar, Performance, and also BikesDirect.
    If you order online, you give up having the bike set-up and adjusted for you, as well as run the risk of having warranty issues. You also have to hope the bike fits you correctly, and will not be able to test ride it before buying it. If you are a good mechanic, these are issues you may be willing to deal with to get a better price. Otherwise, the savings can be easily be eaten away when you take it to an LBS to do what they would have done for you if you had purchased a bike there. Each LBS is somewhat unique. In areas where there are many to choose from, you can shop around sometimes and catch a great deal on a leftover model that can be a better deal than something purchased online. They also may have a good deal on a lightly used older bike, or may have something they are tossing out. You never know unless you stop in to look around.
    http://www.bikesdirect.com/?gclid=CO...FYnc4AodKnExHA

    Don't forget to do web searches on "bike frame sizing (or fitting)", "choosing a bicycle", etc.

    In regard to used bikes (or anything else mechanical), something never used or abused is always better than the same item that has been trashed and then "fixed up". Caveat emptor ... http://www.merriam-webster.com/dicti...aveat%20emptor
    Bike-A-Holic

  16. #16
    people's champ marley mission's Avatar
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    grab a mixte - that fella with the link had a few nice ones for sale
    Kleins, Kleins...everywhere there's Kleins

  17. #17
    Senior Member cycleheimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marley mission View Post
    grab a mixte - that fella with the link had a few nice ones for sale
    He actually had a few nice looking bikes (i.e., look nice in the pictures). Real nice website, too. Hopefully his bikes are as nice as the website.
    Bike-A-Holic

  18. #18
    Senior Member brianinc-ville's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred View Post
    I am looking for a good road bike for commuting. I would like to find a bike with a good frame that has potential. I figure the money I save riding instead of driving could go into customizing and improving the bike, but I need a good start. My budget is around $200. I know nothing about brands or types of bikes.
    Like others are saying, with a vintage bike you probably want to look for something in the 54-58cm range, and Japanese road bikes from the '70s and '80s usually offer high quality for reasonable prices. But the next-most-important thing is how the bike is set up.

    For commuting -- depending on how long your commute is, of course -- you'll probably prefer upright handle bars (such as the North Road or Albatross styles) instead of the drop bars (the kind that curve down like ram's horns) that you're seeing on most of the bikes you've linked to. The upright bars will put you in a more comfortable position for looking around at the traffic. Drop bars give you more pedaling power, but that's probably not your big concern right now. See if you can try a couple of different bar setups and find out what feels most comfortable to you. If you find a frame that you like, ask the guy how much he'd charge you to rebuild it with upright bars -- or, if you've got time, you can do it yourself. It's not difficult, but there's a little bit to learn.

    Then, if you're commuting, you'll probably want to carry stuff. A rear rack is a must; you can then choose whether to use panniers (a.k.a. saddle bags) or baskets on it. For around-town use, I prefer Wald folding baskets on the rear rack -- they carry tons of stuff, including large grocery bags, but they're kind of heavy. Again, if you're not racing, the little bit of extra weight really isn't a big deal.

    The other thing you'll probably want are fenders. SKS and Planet bike make good ones that aren't very expensive. For commuting they make a huge difference. Oh, and LED head- and tail-lights. Get a few, and get some rechargeable batteries. You can't be too visible when you're on the road at dusk and at night.

    If you're patient and watch Craigslist, you could probably find a decent frame and build it up with the components above for around $200. If you've got more time than money, it can be great to work on your bike at a community bike shop -- it looks like Louisville has one: http://brycc.org/collectives/freewheel-bike-workshop/ I don't know how that particular shop works, but often you can buy cheap used parts and get some mechanical advice at the same time.

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