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Thread: Shopping help?

  1. #1
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    Shopping help?

    Hello, new member here, wasn't quite sure where something this diverse fit, so mods, please be so kind as to move if necessary.

    Recently i wound up needing to get around while my van was in the shop, and broke out my Kulana Moondog that'd been hung up on the balcony for over a year. The bad? Rear brakes don't work, and neither does the shifter, though it was stuck in 3rd gear, so it was usable. I did ten miles of riding like that, and actually enjoyed it. That said, with it being a $99 WalMart special, i don't think its worth fixing. Plus i'm moving to St Louis in a few weeks, so if i sell it, its one less thing to ship, and i can buy something else when i get there.

    Now to the choices, i'm just looking for something for short hops to the grocery store and the like, the nature of my job requires a motor vehicle. So, here's my short list:

    Huffy Men's Calais 26" 6-Speed Bicycle, my reservation is that when i worked at WM as an assembler, Huffys were our lowest quality name brand.
    Magna Men's 28 In. Cityscape Bike, a 700cc for barely over a Benji, sounds too good to be true
    Kent Mens Bayside 7 Speed Comfort Bike, returning to my WM days, Kent made bikes were the best of the house brand bikes, so i'm a bit partial to this. Similar bikes are the Next Avalon from WM, and the Glendale from KM, i'm assuming there's little difference?
    DBX Crosswoods from Dicks.

    The last one is actually the leading contender, since i expect if i buy any of the others, i'll have to pay a bike shop to finish it for me, and possibly fix a few things, so while its the priciest, buying it from the shop might save me some money. That said, there are two questions with it, is a DBX any good? I've never heard of them. Second, Dicks says it has certified assemblers, certified by whom? At WM, if you knew the business end of a screw driver, you were qualified to assemble bikes.

    Obviously i'm just looking for two cheap wheels (let the jokes begin), or rather low priced, cheap has a bad habit of costing a lot more over time, so if anyone knows anything about these, it'd help.

    Thanks,
    Jos Harrison

  2. #2
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Can't say a lot of good things about any of those bikes. Have you tried craigslist for a better quality used bike that is affordable?
    My bikes: 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2015 Cannondale Supersix EVO carbon 105

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

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    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    maybe you should pony up more money for a folding bike
    so You don't have to store it out in the weather
    and let it be destroyed in the elements.

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    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coalpepper View Post
    i'm just looking for something for short hops to the grocery store and the like,
    Semi-expendable (cheap) is good. That way you won't feel so bad if it gets stolen. It'll save you from having to lug around an expensive and heavy lock system too.

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    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    Fix your current bike. Probably just needs some lube and adjustment.

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    Shopping bikes need a place to carry stuff. You can get a rear luggage rack for larger things and to hang pannier bags from . This requires a set of threaded bolt holes on the bike frame.
    You can fit a front basket for smaller items, no special bits required.
    I think your current bike is cruiser style and has lower rack mounts. It is adequate for local shopping but you can do better.
    I like hub gears for convenience, they are cleaner and need less maintenance. A set of quality puncture-resistant tyres really help and you need sufficient clearance for the tyre width.
    Most hybrid style bikes work just fine but I would avoid any suspension system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RonH View Post
    Can't say a lot of good things about any of those bikes. Have you tried craigslist for a better quality used bike that is affordable?
    Not yet, but being here in Phoenix, most of the people ride bikes of this grade, so i don't expect much. Heck, right now i can only buy one of these locally, between one K-Mart and three Walmarts, they had less than a dozen adult sized bikes, i guess bikes are popular right now.
    Jos Harrison

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    Actually the new place in St Louis will have room for storage inside, so that's no longer an issue.
    Jos Harrison

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    Considering the low quality parts that Pacific uses in their mass market bikes and my limited mechanical skills, i'll prolly have to have a new shifter installed since the derailleur moves fine, and the brakes are probably need a new cable as the problem seems to be some binding in there. All in all, i'd prolly invest more than the bike is worth.
    Jos Harrison

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    I like the hybrids, but for some reason, aside from the Huffy mentioned above, they start north of $200. Not a bad price, but when you place a hybrid side by side with a comfort from the same company, and the only visible differences is the 700 series tires, you have to wonder why that costs $50 to $75 more.

    The current bike is a comfort bike, surf themed, and absurdly heavy. Currently i have a rack and baskets at the rear, and a basket at the front. I can either transfer those to the new bike, or get new ones, and the carrying duty can be shared with my partner's bike.

    What's wrong with suspension? Having a bad back, i wouldn't mind a look more cushioning, that's for sure.

    As to why i'm looking into bikes like this, at least for now, i expect to be a casual user, just going out for a lark, to grab a snack, or weather permitting, picking up a half dozen bags of groceries (load to be shared with my mate), so an more serious bike would be wasted on me. Besides, i can always upgrade if i decide that i want something more down the road, this will just get me on the back on the road for now.
    Jos Harrison

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    Quote Originally Posted by SlimRider View Post
    Interesting, never even considered a folding bike, and i like the style. Oddly when you find the loop on Amazon, its a different design ( http://www.amazon.com/Schwinn-Loop-7...8987690&sr=1-1 ). Either way, it does look like something i might like, thanks.

    Starts poking around the site, "Hmmm, what's everyone's thoughts on Schwinn in general? As i'm poking, i'm seeing things like the Wayfarer that would fit my tastes and price range, albeit on the high end. Plus my budget isn't rigid, i can go a bit beyond it . The Lakeshore is pretty nice too. Aside from the problems of its current condition, i do like the style, but its weight is rather excessive.
    Last edited by Coalpepper; 02-11-12 at 12:27 PM. Reason: Adding more info
    Jos Harrison

  13. #13
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Schwinn is a crap shoot anymore, some of the stuff is of decent quality, but much of it is built to meet a very cheap price point with the most expensive item on the bike being the head tube sticker...

    The Lakeshore is a bicycle in that it has two wheels and you pedal it, without seeing the actual bike and the quality of the components who knows. It may work for what you need in that it is inexpensive and has the style you are looking for.

    I have only purchased one disposable bike from WM in the past few years, and I got what I paid for, it was a Huffy Cranbrook cruiser and it was a POS right out of the store, crappy welds and the rear coaster brake self destructed in less than a week, fortunately WM has a liberal return policy, so the bike went back and was replaced with a similar one, that one had the same crappy welding job, but at least the rear hub is still intact.

    Most cheap bicycles are all made in the same plants, quality will vary from OK to dismal, places like WM figure it is cheaper to give the money back (and probably back charge the manufacturer) than to spend a bit extra to up the quality.

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    Hey there CoalPepper!

    There's basically two different tiers of Schwinn bikes. There's the WALMART kind that Wahoonc has already explained that carries this LOGO:

    newer_Schwinn_logo.jpg
    STAY AWAY FROM THIS LOGO!!!


    OTOH there's the Signature brand. The Signature Schwinn bikes are all at least a few steps above the quality of the others. They will all have decent components and the overwhelming majority of them will be built properly in a local Schwinn bike shop.

    - Slim

    PS.

    If you're sure that you are an excellent mechanic and you have a steel framed bike, you can work miracles with some of the worse that Walmart produces. Otherwise, don't even think about it!
    Last edited by SlimRider; 02-11-12 at 03:04 PM.

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    I say hit some of the lbs in your new area and shop clearance items, demo bikes, bike swaps, and even nashbar.com and bikedirect.com. You can do much better that way for a fraction of the cost and get a better bike than you would at that price from Walmart. The problem with Walmart bikes is that they break easily and you can spend much more money repairing them than they are worth. SO your better off doing what I mentioned and craigslist and spend a little more money initially to get a bike that will last.

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    Tell me about, as i said i was once an assembler for them. Some of the Next products, especially those made by Kent were better than the Huffies, and the Pacific brands were all mix and match parts, heck, the frame of my Kulana was used for a Schwinn model K-Mart sold. Its really why my Walmart/K-Mart list was limited to the Kent products, its the only thing there i'd trust to be worth my money or slightly more, the rest, nope. Heck, one of the Next manufacturers was so bad that we'd open the box and inventory the bike, because they never arrived in working order, you had to order parts before you could build it, and hope they sent you the right ones.
    Jos Harrison

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    Quote Originally Posted by SlimRider View Post
    Hey there CoalPepper!

    There's basically two different tiers of Schwinn bikes. There's the WALMART kind that Wahoonc has already explained that carries this LOGO:


    OTOH there's the Signature brand. The Signature Schwinn bikes are all at least a few steps above the quality of the others. They will all have decent components and the overwhelming majority of them will be built properly in a local Schwinn bike shop.

    - Slim

    PS.

    If you're sure that you are an excellent mechanic and you have a steel framed bike, you can work miracles with some of the worse that Walmart produces. Otherwise, don't even think about it!
    Ah yes, the Pacific Schwinns, not real good. Actually we've got one with that logo that's pretty good, but we got if from Performance Bicycle, and seems to be at least a little bit better than the Walmart stuff. None of the WM stuff shows up on their website, prolly because those are brand engineered by Pacific and aren't real Schwinns, so the ones i like from the site i'm guessing would be a good deal. I'm particularly taken with the Network.

    As to being a mechanic, i can handle a few minor things, but not much, better off leaving it to the pros.
    Jos Harrison

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