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  1. #1
    sep
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    What are good, cheap commuter bikes?

    I'm looking to buy a bike for commuting. Being a college student, I don't have much money (<500 used would be best). I'm going to be browsing craigslist for used deals. I would appreciate knowing

    - bike models
    - cost for a new bike
    - cost for used.

  2. #2
    Senior Member SouthFLpix's Avatar
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    Any bike can be used for commuting, but the ability to mount wider tires, fenders, and a rear rack, are what I consider standard 'commuter bike' traits. So just about any bike that is not a full out racing road bike will probably do (although some use a racing bike in combination with a backpack; it's just not the norm).

  3. #3
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sep View Post
    I'm looking to buy a bike for commuting. Being a college student, I don't have much money (<500 used would be best). I'm going to be browsing craigslist for used deals. I would appreciate knowing

    - bike models
    - cost for a new bike
    - cost for used.
    Used MTBs from the 80s and 90s. Very cheap. Very durable if in good condition. Great commuters.

  4. #4
    Senior Member downtube42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    Used MTBs from the 80s and 90s. Very cheap. Very durable if in good condition. Great commuters.
    +1
    What is bicycle touring?
    "So I kept looking and eventually found that a spark plug had same threads. So I cycled next two days until I got to Jackson, MS with a spark plug instead of right pedal." - mev

  5. #5
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Also, don't forget the local bike co-op. Ours has been selling these MTBs for around $100. I would personally spring for a slightly more expensive one. I've seen some very, very nice MTBs (ie, Bridgestone from the 90s...) for around $140 and these were also well refurbished.

  6. #6
    Intrepid Bicycle Commuter AlmostGreenGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    Used MTBs from the 80s and 90s. Very cheap. Very durable if in good condition. Great commuters.
    +2


  7. #7
    Senior Member Grim's Avatar
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    $500? OMG you got money to burn!
    Buy used.

    My Expensive 98 Cannondale touring bike was $350 with 8 speed brifters my 95 was $220. My Fuji was $8 at a yard sale.
    You cant have a signature unless it fits in this box

  8. #8
    nashcommguy
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    Quote Originally Posted by sep View Post
    I'm looking to buy a bike for commuting. Being a college student, I don't have much money (<500 used would be best). I'm going to be browsing craigslist for used deals. I would appreciate knowing

    - bike models
    - cost for a new bike
    - cost for used.
    Yeah, continue to browse craigslist for a used bike or try a bike co-op. Depending on terrain, length, weather conditions you'll need to tailor your ride to your needs. There are plenty of mechanics at co-ops that will help you make a good selection and advise you about add-ons like rack, panniers, took-kit, frame-pump, headlight, tailight(s). Extra tubes and a patch-kit as well. Year-round commuting requires attention to clothing concerns. Bicycle commuting is almost a lifestyle choice. Selecting a ride is just the beginning, but there're plenty of people who'll help guide you into a satisfying and healthy commuting experience. Good luck. Post back w/questions.

  9. #9
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Good/Cheap = oxymoron

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    1. Go to a bike shop and make notes about the better quality models (over 500)
    2. Look for the same models, a few years older, as second hand. Some shops have trade-ins to sell which have been gone over by a mechanic.

  11. #11
    Junior Member xtnpd's Avatar
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    Used MTBs from the 80s and 90s. Very cheap. Very durable if in good condition. Great commuters.
    +3

    It's what I ride. 25 miles of road and hard-pack (50 round-trip) 3 times a week. Of course, she was new when I bought her, but now she has lights, a new saddle, new wheels, stem, bars ... all the stuff someone will have done for you already (if you're lucky) on that used bike. I'd still change out the saddle. Used saddles give me the willies.

  12. #12
    Senior Member bktourer1's Avatar
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    a cuople of shops around where I live sell used bikes cheap. You should be able to get one at at shop
    so they can make room for new models coming in.
    Try a garage sale in you neighborhood

  13. #13
    Senior Member exile's Avatar
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    Go with gerv. The early to mid 90's mountain bikes (non suspension) were extremely versatile. My 93 Giant Rincon had eyelets both front and rear to add racks and fenders. It was also super comfy, although a bit heavy.
    lil brown bat wrote:
    Wow, aren't other people stupid? It's a good thing that we're so smart. Yay us.

  14. #14
    Born Again Pagan irclean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    Used MTBs from the 80s and 90s. Very cheap. Very durable if in good condition. Great commuters.
    +4



    On any given day you can usually find one of these on Craiglist or similar free classified ad sites.
    Gettin' my Fred on.

  15. #15
    Intrepid Bicycle Commuter AlmostGreenGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by irclean View Post
    +4


    Love those handle bars!!!!!

  16. #16
    Born Again Pagan irclean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlmostGreenGuy View Post
    Love those handle bars!!!!!
    This bike is all about comfort, not speed (although it can still get up to a pretty good clip). Since that pic I have installed some Ergon GC2s for even more comfort. It's my dedicated toddler hauler now; of course that meant in needed some new wheels... and a crank... and some better brake pads... and a new kickstand...

    Gettin' my Fred on.

  17. #17
    Very, very Senior Member JPprivate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlmostGreenGuy View Post
    +2

    Mine looks just like that. Mountain bike, after a while I added fenders, a rear rack and skinnier/non-knobby tires. Very happy with it.

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