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  1. #1
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    My Puch got taken :( Looking for a suitable replacement!


    So this morning as I came down from my apartment I saw that my bike wasn't there. After asking maintenance and stuff, we came to the conclusion it was stolen. I later found the cut lock next to where the bike had been :'(

    So my gray Puch Pacifica Series 1 was stolen. I'm pretty sad cause I really liked that bike.
    Just a few weeks ago I had gotten a new tire (summer heat is nasty) and was in the process of getting some classic drop bars for it.

    On to my question. What bikes or models should I look for that are not super expensive ($200 or less if possible)?
    I found that bike to be light (anyone know the weight?), and comfortable to ride (I wanna say it was 53cm or something since it looked smallish). Also, I really liked the downtube shifters. Not sure if many other bikes have those.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    I'm somewhat new to this. I always wanted to get a classic bike and then I just happened to find this one and nursed it back to life and really liked it.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Member
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    I'm no expert, so take it for what it's worth.. Unless you in a SUPER hurry to replace your bike in very short order, I would keep an eye out at yard sales and craigslist. There can be some great deals on vintage bikes to be had. You just have to be patient and a bit discerning is all. Look for some Japanese made brands: Fuji, Shogun, Miyata, Nishiki. It's not unusual to find some real "diamonds in the rough" that are great bikes that people are simply trying to unload. Also, be wary, their are also a ton of over priced junk bikes to be had as well (Think Big Box Store brands, or bikes that have had a brutal life). I just went and checked out a vintage Nishiki this evening I found on craigslist. It looked "ok" in the photos and the guy said it was in Good condition.. It rattled, squeeked and was rusty and greasy and in need of a major overhaul. The price was to steep for it's condition, so I passed on it.
    "The unexamined life is not worth living."
    -Socrates

  3. #3
    Senior Member Chombi's Avatar
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    School's about to start and along with it the thieving rate goes way up for bikes....
    So everybody watch out!
    Last edited by Chombi; 08-08-14 at 06:27 PM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Thumpic's Avatar
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    What is your local craigslist? We'll help you look.
    Thumpic....

    Green is the new "CHEAP"

  5. #5
    Senior Member Uncle Randy's Avatar
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    I'm not in a hurry. 24 speeds are enough for me.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for all the great suggestions.

    I guess my question would have been better phrased asking for what to look for in a decent bike.
    I've seen too many in the $200 range and I wonder which ones would be worth that and which ones are just extremely optimistic sellers. (Similar to buying vintage stereos and players lol)

    What would be some features to look for? Or is that down to preference?

    I'm not in a huge hurry at the moment because I'll be out of the country for a bit over a month but I will get acquainted with what to look for so I can better search when I return. That was my main mode of transport to and from university so I will need a replacement.

    Thanks!


    Quote Originally Posted by Thumpic View Post
    What is your local craigslist? We'll help you look.
    It'd be the Inland Empire/Los Angeles CL. California.




    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Randy View Post

    Man, that one looks nice. If only it was closer lol.

  7. #7
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rawrsomesausage View Post
    I guess my question would have been better phrased asking for what to look for in a decent bike. ...
    What would be some features to look for? Or is that down to preference?
    Does it fit?
    Is the frame straight with no visible sign of damage? Minor scratches are okay and can be considered part of a bike's history. A replaced fork may indicate that the bike was wrecked hard at least once.
    Do all the parts work and are they clean, not rusted? Most parts are replaceable but it costs more money.
    Has it been serviced regularly (as opposed to the seller merely saying it has)? "New tires" does not increase its value other than your cost to get new ones. "Tires still hold air" is not a good thing to read at all.
    Do the wheels spin freely? If it has QR hubs, remove the front wheel from the bike and check the bearings by hand.
    Does the headset (the steering) has any roughness or looseness?
    Do the wheels wobble or are they straight with no dings that disrupt the braking surface?
    Are the rims alloy? Avoid steel.

    Once it has passed those tests and you want something better than "merely a bike", look for clean lug work. Look for a brand name on the tubing, for example Reynolds, Columbus, Tange, Ishiwata, but don't let the lack a tubing decal be a sticking point.
    Lift it, see how heavy it is.
    Compare chainstay length to other bikes, longer usually means it rides softer, shorter generally means it is more responsive.
    Check component brands and models. Campy is good, usually expensive. Shimano is good. Suntour derailleurs are great. Do you care that they are a complete group, err, excuse me, gruppo? Probably want to skip and Simplex front derailleurs made with Delrin plastic.
    Are the brakes sidepull, centerpull, double pivot? Do you care? Tektro double pivot brakes are superb. Some people complain about all the vintage centerpull brakes, but it really depends on the pad material.
    Before you meet a seller look up the brand and model. That will give you some idea of where it sat in that brands price hierarchy.
    Is it French? Plenty of great French bikes out there but until the early 80's (roughly) the French industry had its own thread standards.
    Take it for a spin. If it feels good and seems robust, then it probably is. There are lots of good bikes out there.

    You probably know all this already. Someone will surely chime in and tell me what I left out or got wrong.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
    jimmuller

  8. #8
    billy chuck eschlwc's Avatar
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    - fit
    - straight frameset
    - nice paint with decals
    - cotterless crankset
    - unstuck stem and seatpost
    - aluminum rims and bars
    - quick release hubs
    - on-frame rear derailleur hanger
    - down tube shifters

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