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Old 08-18-11, 04:03 PM   #1
TheIVJackal
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How To: Increase Bike Value For Sale

I was trying to find this information on here but could not, can someone give me a few tips on what to do to increase the value of any bike?
I know a good cleaning goes a long way but, for example, if the seat is a little beat up, is it worth buying a new one? Will the investment in the seat pay for it self when sold? Thanks for the help!
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Old 08-18-11, 04:06 PM   #2
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Easiest way to increase the value of a bike for sale?

Take good photos!
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Old 08-18-11, 04:22 PM   #3
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Old 08-18-11, 04:42 PM   #4
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take it to your LBS for a quick tune up. Don't get carried away but make sure it is shifting and braking properly. If your tires are bald or cracking, replace them. wipe it down nice and maybe even wax it. The more it appears that the bike was well taken care of (whether or not it was) the more it will appear to be worth. Also, if the new owner doesn't have to mess around getting the bike up to snuff, they will be willing to pay more. If it needs a $20 tune up, they will want $50 off your price. I think the seat would be a worthy investment if you can get a cheap take off from your LBS. One here in town has a whole box of them, $20 each. but point out to the buyer that it is new. If nothing else, it might be a good bargaining chip.
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Old 08-18-11, 04:56 PM   #5
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Tape a couple $20 bills to the handlebars.
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Old 08-18-11, 05:02 PM   #6
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Old 08-18-11, 05:06 PM   #7
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Im actually a bike mechanic myself so I do a tune up on all bikes I sell but trying to find more ways to increase the value without it biting me.
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Old 08-18-11, 05:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
Tape a couple $20 bills to the handlebars.

Sometimes a smart-ass reply is the closest one to the truth.

If you are trying to sell a bike, new tires and a good looking seat impress casual riders more than anything else. Make sure the bike is as clean as possible and works as good as possible. Beware of getting sucked into the Law of Diminishing Returns.
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Old 08-18-11, 06:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Easiest way to increase the value of a bike for sale?

Take good photos!
Good photos are essential. On every level.

Quote:
Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
Tape a couple $20 bills to the handlebars.
A bit of bling is what I meant by my smart ass answer. Fresh bar tape, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flying Merkel View Post
Sometimes a smart-ass reply is the closest one to the truth.

If you are trying to sell a bike, new tires and a good looking seat impress casual riders more than anything else. Make sure the bike is as clean as possible and works as good as possible. Beware of getting sucked into the Law of Diminishing Returns.
But this is the BEST advice. Do not put new cogs chains whatever. If it's toast donate it to charity. Don't screw somebody. Karma can hurt.

Last edited by ahsposo; 08-18-11 at 06:22 PM. Reason: "." I'm a stickler.
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Old 08-18-11, 06:20 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by TheIVJackal View Post
I know a good cleaning goes a long way but, for example, if the seat is a little beat up, is it worth buying a new one? Will the investment in the seat pay for it self when sold? Thanks for the help!
If there's a local shop with take-off saddles for $5 or less then that could be a worthwhile investment.
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Old 08-18-11, 06:29 PM   #11
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I'd just clean it, tune it, and sell it. A new saddle will likely make for a quicker sale, but doubt it would increase the value much.
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Old 08-18-11, 07:00 PM   #12
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you can probably get a cheap saddle a take off from the Bike shop,
or one left from someones buying a new one..
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Old 08-18-11, 07:15 PM   #13
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I must be in the minority, but I want the original saddle. I know what I've paid to replace the vintage saddle that the flipper threw away, if I can even find one . . . at least keep it and offer it up to the buyer.
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Old 08-18-11, 08:41 PM   #14
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Maybe I'm just weird, but I've been riding a bike since I was 6 1/2 and I've been through gosh, I don't know how many bikes, at least 10 maybe 12 fair to good ones, and I've never sold a complete bike. I've traded or sold this piece or that but when I let one go, it's done. Scrap. Especially when I was a tweener. Paper delivery is hell on a bike. Broke frames when I was in high school because BMX didn't exist back then.

Oh, I'm 58 1/2.

I've had 'em stolen. But mostly I broke them or they rusted. Steel ain't the best for long life.
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Old 08-18-11, 09:10 PM   #15
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I've a steel bike that's about 50 years old and another that's about 30 years old. Neither one of them spend more than a couple hours at a time in a non-climate-controlled environment. I fully expect both of them to go to the grave with me. And I'm 44.

As for original saddles I almost never ride a bike with the original saddle but when I sell bikes I either sell with original saddle or offer the original saddle up if they want it. Same with other stuff, even tires. Nobody's taken the goods though. People buying 20 year old MTBs just don't seem to care that much.

Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 08-18-11 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 08-18-11, 09:25 PM   #16
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Also doesn't hurt to make sure it has a water bottle holder, and depending on the possible market and type of bike, a kickstand. Some just don't get why those aren't included on new bikes. I sold one with a cheap bell since they're required by law in our city.
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Old 08-19-11, 03:13 AM   #17
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Major factor in the Actual Value of a bike is the amount of money that must be spent to repair it.
with that in mind:
replacing the worn out chain and cassete will increase the value by about 80$ (60$ if it was a freewheel)
new brake pads will increase the value by about $50
replacing the dead bottom braket will increase the value by about 60$
trueing a bent wheel increases the value by about 25$
new tires 35$ each
saddle about 30$
small accessories, ie bottle holder, increase value by less than 10$
cleaning doesn't increase the bikes value at all, since it can be done at no cost

So, the largest value increase is from replacing the worn out chain and cassete. do that first
Alternately, if you don't have the time or inclanation to do such repairs, deduct the amount listed for each applicable item from your asking price. Don't be surprised to see it fall into negative numbers, in which case just sell the bike as scrap metal or donate it.
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Old 08-19-11, 04:57 AM   #18
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You must sell bikes in a different area than I do.

Cleaning is often worth $50 in my marketplace, a week or two of posting time at least.
I often replace chains but rarely replace cassettes.
7-speed cassette is only $10 more than 7-speed freewheel. 8-speed cassette's about the same.
I try to keep to the $10-15 tires for flips.
Never spend more than $5 on a saddle for a flip if you can help it. Many folks will swap out saddle.
Brake pads $30 tops.

A lot of items don't translate to more money that you can sell the bike for but if you don't have those items in somewhat decent condition then you might not be able to sell it at all. For instance wasted tires that don't hold air probably translates to -$60 but only cost you $20-25 to put some placeholder tires on. If you have a bike with enough wasted items on it you should probably consider stripping it down to frame/fork and parting it out.

Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 08-19-11 at 05:01 AM.
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Old 08-19-11, 12:09 PM   #19
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Great tips so far! If there is anything else, keep 'em coming!
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Old 08-20-11, 08:11 PM   #20
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New grips or bar tape can be a worthwhile and inexpensive upgrade. Watch your customers. That will be the first thing they touch while looking at a used bike. That's an area you always want to look and feel good. Save the old stuff if the bike has potential collectible value.
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Old 08-22-11, 08:32 AM   #21
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MAKE IT AS CLOSE TO STOCK AS POSSIBLE! No one wants your taste in color schemes, etc. Make it a plain-jane bike and let them do the customizing.
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Old 08-22-11, 09:58 AM   #22
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Quote:
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If there's a local shop with take-off saddles for $5 or less then that could be a worthwhile investment.
Every bike shop that I've worked at had a box of OEM saddles that we sold for very reasonable prices. If your bike has a shreaded seat that would probably be a good investment.
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Old 08-25-11, 03:54 AM   #23
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Alright, gives me a better idea of what to do! Thanks guys.
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Old 08-25-11, 12:03 PM   #24
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I was trying to find this information on here but could not, can someone give me a few tips on what to do to increase the value of any bike?
I know a good cleaning goes a long way but, for example, if the seat is a little beat up, is it worth buying a new one? Will the investment in the seat pay for it self when sold? Thanks for the help!
The very best way to get maximum sale price out of a bike, car,boat, motorcycle, or house is to detail, detail,detail it. Make it "look" like new or little used by cleaning it, polishing it, fixing any little problems etc. so that a buyer will want what he sees.

No one wants a dirty beat up P.O.S.!
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