I'm looking for a beginner bike for the wife and there's a used 3 years old Giant Boulder SE with 13" frame that for sale for $145. She's small and I rather have her started out with something small and get the feel for it. There'll be no trails, just paved roads and she'll not ride it everyday, probably on weekends only.
She wants something light and easy to manuever and I don't know if this model of Boulder SE is aluminum or steel.
Is it worth $145 or I'm better off pay for a brand new one?
Trek 830 circa 1993 and a Fuji WSD Finest 1.0 2006
She is better off with a bike that fits. You don't mention her inseam or height, but a 13" MTB frame should fit someone with an inseam around 26 inches. Also, if she is not going trail riding, you really should get a hybrid or road bike. The MTB bike will feel very sluggish on the roads and the knobby tires will handle very poorly on roads. The suspension will also sap her energy with each pedal stroke, and isn't necessary on the road.
A hybrid or a flat bar road bike will be much better for roads. You also mention light and maneuverable. A MTB is anything but light. They are usually 10 -15 pounds heavier than a road bike. Unless you get a chopper or a beach cruiser, just about any bike will be maneuverable enough for your purposes. The flat bar on the road bike will feel a bit more maneuverable/stable than the traditional road bars.
Also, that price seems a little high for a 3 yo bike depending on its condition. They are selling for $259 new. By the way, they don't seem to have made a 13" frame in 2003 or any year for that matter..... You may want to check on that.
From 2002 onward, they are aluminum, in 2001 it was steel.