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Old 04-12-08, 06:33 PM   #1
DocB
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Need opinions on this used Cannondale - To buy or not to buy - Update

This bike was posted on CL in my area. Its a mens cannondale touring bike t700 and they are asking $375. Comes with everything pictured including a second rack bag for the rear (one was removed for picture.) Seller states its about 10 years old and belonged to his father-in-law who rode it on long tours and used it to commute. He is not a "bike-guy" and is unsure if the tires are any good anymore. He also isn't sure of the actual frame size. He says its not printed on the bike but he says when he measures the seat tube from just above the crank to the top of the tube its 25". I'm 6'2" with a 35-36 inch inseam. Will this bike be too big for me? Is this a reasonable price for a bike of this age and use? Any other questions I should ask him?


Also, would this serve as a better street riding/kid trailer pulling/possible commuting bike than a new Dew Plus for $500?
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Old 04-12-08, 06:35 PM   #2
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That might almost be a little *small* for you, depending, but it's a really big frame regardless.

Also, the price is pretty darn good. It looks to be a very well setup bike. if it was here and in my size, well, it'd be a hard choice
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Old 04-12-08, 07:11 PM   #3
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I think $375 is a very fair price. Those accessories are fairly expensive. The main question is the mechanical condition of the bike. Does it make noise when you ride it?
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Old 04-12-08, 08:05 PM   #4
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Ask him what the standover height is - measured from the floor to the top of the top tube.
If its a bit lower than you crotch, you will likely be OK.
If you don't end up liking it, wait until the weather (and bike prices) heat up, then flip it.
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Old 04-12-08, 08:12 PM   #5
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I'd buy it. It would fit me too.
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Old 04-12-08, 08:30 PM   #6
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Get the serial number from them it will tell you http://www.vintagecannondale.com/info.html
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Old 04-13-08, 05:35 AM   #7
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Get the serial number from them it will tell you http://www.vintagecannondale.com/info.html
Thanks for the tip. I'll get the serial number and give that a look.

I'm starting to get tempted to go ahead and buy this bike up providing it fits me. Prior to making this find I was leaning towards buying the Dew Plus. Would the the Cannondale serve as a better street riding/kid trailer pulling/possible commuting bike than a new Dew Plus for $500? I'm always partial to new but not if the Cannon is going to be more bang for my buck. Which would you do?
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Old 04-13-08, 08:10 AM   #8
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I would take the bike to a good mechanic and get it checked out. If his dad maintained the bike well you should be fine but even people who maintain their bikes well wear out parts and toast wheels eventually, especially if they're putting a lot of miles on the bike (which it sounds like his dad was.) If there's a lot of work that needs to be done to the bike it could easily cost another few hundred dollars. Take the bike to a good mechanic and have them give you an estimate on any work that needs to be done before you buy it.

P.S. I'd guess it's somewhere around a 94-96 but I'd do like JTGraphics said and get the serial number.
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Old 04-13-08, 09:25 AM   #9
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Thanks for the tip. I'll get the serial number and give that a look.

I'm starting to get tempted to go ahead and buy this bike up providing it fits me. Prior to making this find I was leaning towards buying the Dew Plus. Would the the Cannondale serve as a better street riding/kid trailer pulling/possible commuting bike than a new Dew Plus for $500? I'm always partial to new but not if the Cannon is going to be more bang for my buck. Which would you do?
The Cannondale T series are excellent bikes. They are well thought out touring bikes and, as such, make excellent commuting bikes. They are stiff because of the oversized tubes but for big guys that's not a disadvantage.

Even old, this bike is probably better than the new Dew. Original retail on the bike was around $1000 in the late '90 (probably a 1999). Yea. It's worth $375. It's gem.
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Old 04-13-08, 10:57 AM   #10
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Original retail on the bike was around $1000 in the late '90 (probably a 1999). Yea. It's worth $375. It's gem.
I worked at a shop that carried Cannondale in the mid nineties-early aughts.

The 1999 bikes had STI, V-brakes, and different decals. Cannondale used the barn logo until 96, started putting a big "C" on the headtube in 97, and the pointy "C" that's pretty similar to their current logo in '99 (partially from memory and partially from http://www.vintagecannondale.com/catalog.html .) I can say with reasonable certainty that it's a 1995 model.
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Old 04-13-08, 11:56 AM   #11
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Well the seller says all he can find is b1-0302 on the frame which doesn't seem to fit the vintage Cannondale info. I'm guessing he isn't looking in the right spot. He says the standover height is 35" which happens to be the same as my inseam without shoes on. I'm guessing that with shoes on I'll *just* be able to stand flatfooted. Is this going to be an acceptable size or too big? If this is a 95' as Ethan suggests is this still a better buy than a new Dew Plus? Also, if the tires need replacing what would be a fair counter offer from $375?
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Old 04-13-08, 02:33 PM   #12
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Well the seller says all he can find is b1-0302 on the frame which doesn't seem to fit the vintage Cannondale info. I'm guessing he isn't looking in the right spot. He says the standover height is 35" which happens to be the same as my inseam without shoes on. I'm guessing that with shoes on I'll *just* be able to stand flatfooted. Is this going to be an acceptable size or too big? If this is a 95' as Ethan suggests is this still a better buy than a new Dew Plus? Also, if the tires need replacing what would be a fair counter offer from $375?
Finding the serial number on my T800 was challenging Here's where to look from 93 on.

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Old 04-13-08, 03:33 PM   #13
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Well the seller says all he can find is b1-0302 on the frame which doesn't seem to fit the vintage Cannondale info. I'm guessing he isn't looking in the right spot. He says the standover height is 35" which happens to be the same as my inseam without shoes on. I'm guessing that with shoes on I'll *just* be able to stand flatfooted. Is this going to be an acceptable size or too big? If this is a 95' as Ethan suggests is this still a better buy than a new Dew Plus? Also, if the tires need replacing what would be a fair counter offer from $375?
Ethan was probably closer to the date than I was, although I never go by what a bike has hanging on it to date it. I make way too many changes to a bike to even remember what it was stock. I usually assume that other people do the same

There's nothing wrong with the Dew and I'm usually not a big fan of buying an old bike and trying to upgrade it. As Ethan says, it can be expensive. But the Cannondale isn't just any 'old bike'. It's a well made frame from a good company. Don't go crazy and dump another $1000 into it but it's worth some a few reasonable up grades.

As for price, I'd start at $275 and settle at $325 to $350
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Old 04-14-08, 11:28 AM   #14
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Ethan was probably closer to the date than I was, although I never go by what a bike has hanging on it to date it. I make way too many changes to a bike to even remember what it was stock. I usually assume that other people do the same

There's nothing wrong with the Dew and I'm usually not a big fan of buying an old bike and trying to upgrade it. As Ethan says, it can be expensive. But the Cannondale isn't just any 'old bike'. It's a well made frame from a good company. Don't go crazy and dump another $1000 into it but it's worth some a few reasonable up grades.

As for price, I'd start at $275 and settle at $325 to $350

It can often be hard to tell what year a bike is by the parts. Which is why I usually go by the paint job and decals. Although the serial number is the best way to go.

In any case. The Dew is a solid bike. But assuming that any new parts put on the Cannondale weren't downgrades and that the OEM parts are still in decent shape it's not a bad idea. I'd go with Cycco's advice on the price. I would still bring it in to a shop and get it checked out just to make sure that you know what you're getting yourself into in terms of needed repairs (but I'm a conservative one with used bikes and it's easy for me to say because I can check the bikes over myself).

Re: Sizing test ride it. If it feels OK go for it. Proportions are key and comfort is especially key on a bike that you're going to be spending a lot of time on. If you feel like you're straining even a little bit, or the bike feels awkward pay attention to it, chances are either the bike doesn't fit or something needs to be adjusted.

Good luck!
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Old 04-25-08, 08:58 PM   #15
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Well its been a few weeks and I still haven't had a chance to go look at this bike yet in person. I keep going back and forth with it. My biggest issue is paying $375 for a bike which is over 10 years old when I could get something new for only a hundred more. I know it was a valuable bike in its day but I'm having a hard time with it. I'm pretty sure the guy wants to move the bike since he isn't a rider and just wants it out of his basement. Would offering $200 for it be out of the question?
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Old 04-26-08, 12:30 AM   #16
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Whether offering $200 is out of the question depends on whether you really want it - there's always the danger of irritating the seller, who will then refuse to bargain with you at all on price. Personally, I think $300 to $350 would be a good price, and I wouldn't feel bad about paying the guy's $375 asking price, but of course that's me. It sounds like you're not sure about the C'dale, so maybe trying to get a better price on it is worthwhile.

If I were in your shoes, I'd definitely want to test ride the Dew before you commit one way or the other on the Cannondale. I'm only slightly taller than you, but the one I test rode last month felt cramped, particularly in the top tube length. Again, that's me and not you, but be sure you know how well you like the alternatives before deciding about the Cannondale.

As for pulling a kid trailer, commuting, and street riding, I think the Dew has really good specs, but personally I'd look at the disc brake versions because of the extra weight of the trailer. I was really interested in the Dr. Dew until I took a test ride, and found that it didn't fit the way I wanted. I know a lot of people really like their Dews, though, so I'll chalk it up to in idiosyncrasy of my body proportions and my expectations of what my riding position should be.
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Old 04-26-08, 01:36 AM   #17
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Damn, just sold my touring bike for 400, and it was an 07 model, with rack and brand new cassette/chain.

Yeah, I guess the guy got a great deal. I figure it's good karma, eh?

With that reference point in mind, I'd pay around 300 for it, depending on condition. Used bike markets vary with location, too
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Old 04-26-08, 10:35 AM   #18
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That bike looks to be set up very well for touring almost immediately. Touring bikes usually make great Commuters as well, and they can handle a little off road/paths so your safe going just about anywhere. Looks like a great deal to me for 375.
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