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  1. #1
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    What to look for in a used frame?

    Thinking I'd like to build a cx bike for next year. Is there any particular brand one should look for or stay away from when looking for frames on flea bay? How about age? Any tell-tale signs to run and hide from?

  2. #2
    Team Beer Cynikal's Avatar
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    I would avoid frames with comments like "just a small dent in the frame. The shop said it would be fine".

    What size are you? I may have a Cannondale frame on the block soon.
    I'm not one for fawning over bicycles, but I do believe that our bikes communicate with us, and what this bike is saying is, "You're an idiot." BikeSnobNYC

  3. #3
    Team Water Andy_K's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cynikal View Post
    I would avoid frames with comments like "just a small dent in the frame. The shop said it would be fine".
    The typical place to look for dents is about 20 cm back on the top tube, where the handlebars would hit it.

    FWIW, I bought a bike from a local shop that had dents like this on both sides of the top tube. The shop said it would be fine. So far it has been. I only took their word for it because I was buying the frame from them directly.

    Another thing to look for is mangled name plates on STI shifters. This also isn't necessarily a problem (most CX bikes have it) but it is a sign that the shifters have taken the brunt of a crash or two.

  4. #4
    Mud, Gore & Guts eddubal's Avatar
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    Watch for cracking paint around joints. It's a sure sign of a breaking (broken?) weld. Also remember any imperfection mentioned in the ad is probably 2x the size stated.

  5. #5
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Why buy a used frame? This frameset is only $150 shipped: http://www.bikesdirect.com/fantastic..._framefork.htm
    2014 Trek DS.1: "Viaggiatore" A do-it-all bike that is waiting in Italy
    2012 Pedal Force CG2: "Secolo Bicicletta" the modern carbon fiber road bike
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    1997 Simoncini Special Cyclocross: "Little Simon" lugged Columbus steel CX bike
    1987 Serotta Nova Special X: "Azzurri" The retro Columbus SPX steel road bike

  6. #6
    Senior Member Deanster04's Avatar
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    The Lemond Poprad is a great bike. I have both a Ritchey Breakaway (currently my travel touring bike) and a Poprad and love them both (steel). I have purchased several older Poprads for friends and one for my daughter and everyone loves the ride. The bike is steel 853 or True temper ox platinum. They are great bikes. Most I have purchased had some chain suck paint chipping on the chain stay but, that is easy to remedy with paint. Small dents on steel frames are usually no problem unless on the down tube on the under side up by the head tube which may be evidence of crash damage. There were several Poprads at the Cyclocross race recently in Boulder, CO and the riders I talked to are pretty happy.
    The Gunnar Crosshairs and Soma Cross??? both are steel bikes. I would get steel if used as there is no problem the stress fractures with steel as in Al.
    If you can find one and want to travel the Ritchey Breakaway is fantastic. Initially I was worried about the lower coupling but, at 205 lbs and not a gentle off road rider I have had no problems because I use the recommended torque in assembling the bike. Took the bike to Europe for the last 2 summers and rode in the Alps in Italy, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. With a spare set of tires did some dirt riding as well. No problems with the oversize bag in US or Europe. Just have a line behind you when checking in and keep 5 lbs below the max weight (and if someone asks tell them its instruments for demonstration). Good luck.

  7. #7
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    i have this frame and like it. its not light(like carbon), but its strong!


    Quote Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
    Why buy a used frame? This frameset is only $150 shipped: http://www.bikesdirect.com/fantastic..._framefork.htm

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cynikal View Post
    I would avoid frames with comments like "just a small dent in the frame. The shop said it would be fine".

    What size are you? I may have a Cannondale frame on the block soon.
    Thanks for all the replies folks. The current bike I ride (ooolllldd steel) has a 57 cm top tube from center of seat tube to center of head tube.
    That motobecane from bikes direct looks like a great deal, but offer expired. How the heck do you do those type of searches on bikes direct?
    Not sure what I plan to do yet. Could start making payments to the shop for a new bike I would have paid off for next season, could just put a fleabay 105 shifter on my current ride and some 700c wheels/tires and run it as is for minimal investment.

    Cynical, what size is the cannondale you have? I might be interested if/when you're ready to off it.

  9. #9
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Physically inspect it first hand, before handing over your money is best.

    if you don't already have the full group or nearly so from other bikes
    it's hard to beat the price of a new complete bike ..
    the put money in a jar then buy a new bike next summer is a good Idea.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    the put money in a jar then buy a new bike next summer is a good Idea.
    You are probably right. Think I will keep my current bike, get the shifter, and probably save for a new one. Then I could have a new one to race and a beater for mud bogging and beating on.

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