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Old 05-19-12, 10:27 PM   #1
passaround
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Build a Bike or Buy a Bike? And What Type of Bike?

Hello everyone here at the forums,

My old bike was handed down to someone else in my family since I was getting too old for it, and now I would like to consider my options. I am not sure if I should buy parts then build it myself (I would need instruction, since I have no clue about building bikes), or if I should buy a pre-made bike. When I bike, I will use it for commuting, but sometimes I would like to head down to the Big Basin trails *very* occasionally. I would like to get the most good-looking (The new Sutro frame from Mission Bicycle is looking great right now– it'll be 350 when it comes out) and most durable bike possible, and I would like to get an internal gear hub since I would rather not do any maintenance, for around 500-800 dollars. However, I don't want to get a mountain bike, since the bike needs to be light since I will be carrying it when using public transit and the like. So there are two questions: Do I build or buy my bike? And, what type of bike should it be (Hybrid, Road, etc.)? Thanks for your suggestions.
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Old 05-19-12, 11:04 PM   #2
fat_bike_nut
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Buying a complete bike will almost always be cheaper unless you have spare parts lying around to build up on your own.

I really don't have anything else useful to add, so maybe someone else could chime in?
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Old 05-19-12, 11:26 PM   #3
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Learn how to do maintenance -- any bike you get will need it eventually, and there are lots of helpful people on this forum.
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Old 05-20-12, 05:07 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by fat_bike_nut View Post
Buying a complete bike will almost always be cheaper unless you have spare parts lying around to build up on your own.
Yup, and your first bike is likely to be just a "practice bike" anyway.

No matter how carefully you plan and plot, you are going to find some things about your first bike that don't match your riding style and that you don't like. If you do it right, you'll fix most of those things when you buy your second bike.
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Old 05-20-12, 06:36 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by passaround View Post
Do I build or buy my bike?
Buying is more economical. You will spend less. Do that if budget is a factor.

Building is more fun if you're the sort who enjoys wrenching. Build if you have plenty of money and find the wrenching to be as fun as the riding.

Honestly: If you have to ask the question, you should buy a prebuilt bike.
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