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Recumbent What IS that thing?! Recumbents may be odd looking, but they have many advantages over a "wedgie" bicycle. Discuss the in's and out's recumbent lifestyle in the recumbent forum.

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Old 07-22-09, 05:03 PM   #26
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What I would like to know is would this make a decent 'gateway' into the recumbent world? I know some would derail this simply because of where it's distributed through.
I would say that this bike would certainly be a decent 'gateway' bike for a person familiar with simple tuneup maintainance skills. The design is very similar to my wife's Sun X-1 (pictured below) which cost 4X more money, though it probably has better components. As long as you can keep the brakes and DR's operational it could be a good "First 'bent".

That being said, one has to remember that wheel size & gearing are important factors to consider. The Wally bike will most probably be a slow bike hence not really representative of many recumbents currently on the market as far as speed and effeciency is concerned, though still a good candidate for learning the 'feel' of a recumbent bike.

Compare the Wally 'bent to my wife's Sun X-1. Looks very similar to me...
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Old 07-22-09, 07:32 PM   #27
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As long as you can keep the brakes and DR's operational it could be a good "First 'bent".
A "first 'bent" assumes future replacement - frankly, I don't see the Wal-Mart recumbent in that light. If the ergonomics are suitable for the rider's physical dimensions and the frame is upgradeable, then why look further?.. unless, of course, you simply must have the latest bling. Assuming the Wally 'bent is 42-44 pounds, then with a little patient and careful parts swapping, I wouldn't be surprised to see a 35 pound machine, placing it on par with the RANS Tailwind or Bachetta Agio... at a fraction of the cost.
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That being said, one has to remember that wheel size & gearing are important factors to consider. The Wally bike will most probably be a slow bike
By just installing 100 psi Kenda Kwest and 52/42/30 rings, I suspect the Wal-Mart to be every bit as fast as a Tailwind, Agio or even your E1-SX. (BTW, did your Sun E1-SX come factory equipt with 100 psi Kendas?)

Edit: Never mind, I just checked Sun's site and see that the E1-SX comes with "60 psi tires"

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Old 07-22-09, 07:51 PM   #28
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A "first 'bent" assumes future replacement - frankly, I don't see the Wal-Mart recumbent in that light. If the ergonomics are suitable for the rider's physical dimensions and the frame is upgradeable, then why look further?.. unless, of course, you simply must have the latest bling. Assuming the Wally 'bent is 42-44 pounds, then with a little patient and careful parts swapping, I wouldn't be surprised to see a 35 pound machine, placing it on par with the RANS Tailwind or Bachetta Agio... at a fraction of the cost. By just installing 100 psi Kenda Kwest and 52/42/30 rings, I suspect the Wal-Mart to be every bit as fast as a Tailwind, Agio or even your E1-SX. (BTW, did your Sun E1-SX come factory equipt with 100 psi Kendas?)

Edit: Never mind, I just checked Sun's site and see that the E1-SX comes with "60 psi tires"
Somehow, I think it will be a long , long time before they sell something that is on a par with a Tailwind.
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Old 07-22-09, 09:22 PM   #29
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Somehow, I think it will be a long , long time before they sell something that is on a par with a Tailwind.
Oddly enough, Randy Schlitter, (the designer of both the Tailwind and it's cheaper cousin the Wave), purchased AND upgraded one of the first Wal-Mart recumbents available. It is also worthy of note, that when the now discontinued Tailwind was available, it was priced, IIRC, at nearly 4 times the price of the Wal-Mart 'bent. Some years back, RANS also offered a suspended version of the Tailwind... It didn't last long, probably because it carried a MSRP of just pennys shy of $2000.
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Old 07-22-09, 10:00 PM   #30
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A "first 'bent" assumes future replacement - frankly, I don't see the Wal-Mart recumbent in that light. If the ergonomics are suitable for the rider's physical dimensions and the frame is upgradeable, then why look further?.. unless, of course, you simply must have the latest bling. Assuming the Wally 'bent is 42-44 pounds, then with a little patient and careful parts swapping, I wouldn't be surprised to see a 35 pound machine, placing it on par with the RANS Tailwind or Bachetta Agio... at a fraction of the cost. By just installing 100 psi Kenda Kwest and 52/42/30 rings, I suspect the Wal-Mart to be every bit as fast as a Tailwind, Agio or even your E1-SX. (BTW, did your Sun E1-SX come factory equipt with 100 psi Kendas?)

Edit: Never mind, I just checked Sun's site and see that the E1-SX comes with "60 psi tires"
That's not all that fast.

In our garage is her X-1 and my EZ Sport. I believe they have the same rings and same clusters but the 26" wheel on the EZ Sport makes it a much nicer bike in my opinion (I believe the Agio is also a 26" rear wheel). I also have a Volae Tour and an Easy Racer Tour Easy and I would ride any of those three over the X-1. Why? It's quite simple really, the X-1 requires too much effort to travel the distances and speeds I choose to ride. My wife only rides occasionally and at a very leisurely pace...this bike is her "Keeper". It suits her but it would not satisfy a serious cyclist.

My 'first 'bent' was the EZ Sport for two reasons. Decent gearing and wheel size and affordable price (compared to other machines). Comfort and confidence from test rides also played a role in my choice. Had the 'Wally bent' been available I most certainly would have been very tempted to purchase it instead and the driving force would have been price. I don't think I would have ridden a century three weeks after purchase like I did with the EZ Sport though. The smaller bike just doesn't seem to me to be built for that purpose.

However, for someone who wants to try a recumbent out and not invest much money...or buy one for a youngster for riding around the neighborhood, the Wally bike looks like the right choice. If the bike doesn't work out it can be passed around much like the in-expensive Wally- mtn. bikes are today. Those who truely get hooked on the recumbent feel will most certainly step up to a much more efficient and robust machine, especially if they happen to take one out for a test ride. Upgrading the Wally to larger rings just doesn't make much sense to me since there are so many great recumbents out there of far greater quality, but then again that is just my opinion.

Now I don't doubt that many adults will be more than happy to tool around the neighborhood or the local MUP on their Wally 'bent and never purchase another bike, but I'm certain that any serious rider will quickly move up to a more robust machine better equiped to handle long rides.

That is why I consider the Wally 'bent as a 'first bent'. Of course, it's just my opinion for whatever that is worth.

Any way I look at it though, I belive the cheaper recumbent is way over due and I'm glad to see this unit on the market. Now we just need to wait and see if they're built well enough to encourage recumbet use rather than discourage it.

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Old 07-23-09, 06:14 AM   #31
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Some years back, RANS also offered a suspended version of the Tailwind... It didn't last long, probably because it carried a MSRP of just pennys shy of $2000.
Years ago, RANS sold suspended versions of both the Tailwind and the Rocket. Neither sold very well because they were heavy and slow, and very few customers thought that they needed suspension. You can claim it was the price, but that's only part of the equation; the Cannondale recumbent was introduced at $1900, and they've been selling them for years.
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Old 07-23-09, 06:17 AM   #32
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Oddly enough, Randy Schlitter, (the designer of both the Tailwind and it's cheaper cousin the Wave), purchased AND upgraded one of the first Wal-Mart recumbents available. It is also worthy of note, that when the now discontinued Tailwind was available, it was priced, IIRC, at nearly 4 times the price of the Wal-Mart 'bent. Some years back, RANS also offered a suspended version of the Tailwind... It didn't last long, probably because it carried a MSRP of just pennys shy of $2000.
And I have an almost 12 year old Tailwind that gets used alot, and has never let me down. Somehow I think anything sold at Walmart won't last past it's first anniversary. Maybe Huffy will come out with a bent soon
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Old 07-23-09, 06:40 AM   #33
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This is good for the times when strangers ask how much it costs. The Walmart bike is in their ball park, so I can mention it even if I don't recommend it.

I certainly shows that recumbents have come of age, as 10 speeds did in the early '70s.
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Old 07-23-09, 07:20 AM   #34
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The upper photo I believe is correct.

The drive side (upper) chain should be below the red idler so that the chain line is closer to the rear swing arm's pivot axis (to inhibit pogo-ing). Although there appears to be provisions for a return side (lower) chain guide, the design probably doesn't need one.
If the demo pictures aren't consistent, we can only guess how many will get assembled wrong by the WalMart stock clerks.
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Old 07-23-09, 09:40 AM   #35
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Years ago, RANS sold suspended versions of both the Tailwind and the Rocket. Neither sold very well because they were heavy and slow,
Both the Gliss and the Vivo carried advertised weights of "31 pounds" - quoting RANS numbers, not mine. From the same 1999 spec sheet I have, the Tailwind is listed as "30 pounds" while the Rocket is 27 pounds.
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Old 07-23-09, 09:52 AM   #36
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Maybe Huffy will come out with a bent soon
Huffy produced a recumbent adult trike a number of years back. I have a picture, but no exact dates.
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Old 07-23-09, 09:57 AM   #37
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Only one of the Hyper Insight owners reported that the bike wouldn't shift reliably at all for him. That was the 61 year old gentleman whose review was titled, "Please charge $50 More" on Walmart's site. He had also posted his findings in BROL, and found out that the factory had apparently installed brake cable housings for the shifter cables by mistake and that caused extra friction that hindered the shifting function. Others reported less than crisp, precise shifting, but that's to be expected with such long cable runs using low end equipment. Non the less, the components still worked on their bikes.

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"By mistake"? I'm not so sure. I found myself desperately needing a short section of gear housing last summer late at night. Needing it before 6:AM the next day I opted to get some of the Bell branded housing at Walmart, recognizing that I would be replacing it with a week. The cheapest one came in a kit with gear and brake housing. The brake housing had no plastic liner, and the "gear" housing was in fact brake housing, also with no liner. I'm not sure why they felt it was a good idea to save $0.01 by not using plastic liners but, that may be the stock configuration for this bike.
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Old 07-23-09, 03:02 PM   #38
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Nice "Beater" where did you get that seat?

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I'm looking to rebuild a trike for my son and want a simple seat that is fairly light. that looks like it would be a good candidate. Thanks
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Old 07-23-09, 04:19 PM   #39
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US product only......That sucks!
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Old 07-23-09, 04:40 PM   #40
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And I have an almost 12 year old Tailwind that gets used alot, and has never let me down. Somehow I think anything sold at Walmart won't last past it's first anniversary. Maybe Huffy will come out with a bent soon
http://www.amazon.com/Huffy-Venice-R.../dp/B000A33AX6

I bought one locally from a listing on Craigslist for $30 or so a few months back. It's an interesting toy, my first (and only) recumbent. Who knows, one day I might spend more and get a "real" one.
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Old 07-23-09, 09:28 PM   #41
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I kind of doubt the housings used on the Walmart recumbent are the same you bought separately that night at Walmart though it is interesting the issues are similar. But the fact remains that using such long cable runs, especially for the rear derailluer should be as friction free as possible. But so far I don't think the manufacturer is taking that into consideration unless the issue has been resolved with the latest shipment of bikes recieved by Walmart.

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EDIT: It seems that the recumbent is again sold out. I just checked on Walmart's website a few minutes ago. Apparently they're selling quite well.


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"By mistake"? I'm not so sure. I found myself desperately needing a short section of gear housing last summer late at night. Needing it before 6:AM the next day I opted to get some of the Bell branded housing at Walmart, recognizing that I would be replacing it with a week. The cheapest one came in a kit with gear and brake housing. The brake housing had no plastic liner, and the "gear" housing was in fact brake housing, also with no liner. I'm not sure why they felt it was a good idea to save $0.01 by not using plastic liners but, that may be the stock configuration for this bike.

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Old 07-23-09, 10:16 PM   #42
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EDIT: It seems that the recumbent is again sold out.
Are you sure? I experience no difficulties adding one to my cart.
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Old 07-24-09, 08:54 PM   #43
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Are you sure? I experience no difficulties adding one to my cart.
Someone on BROL's forum pointed out to me that the bike was available on Walmart's site. So I checked and son of a gun, there it was. I can't explain why I couldn't find it yesterday except perhaps for some reason my computer was displaying a cached page that it recorded when the Hyper Insight was sold out a few weeks ago.

Were you just testing the shopping cart to see if in fact the bike really is available or did you order it for real?

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Old 07-27-09, 06:39 AM   #44
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This would apply if the 'bent had no rear suspension - The Wally 'bent does. Therefore, to reduce pogoing, the drive side chainline needs to be as close to the swing arm pivot axis as possible - hence, the need for the drive side of the chain to be positioned on the bottom of the red idler.

The Wally 'bent pictured below, is the 'bent Randy Schlitter purchased (owner of RANS bikes) - notice the chain.

To prevent or minimize pogo, the rear tire's contact patch, the pivot and the CoG need to be lined up. The bent is obviously not built to accomodate that. The only possible reason to not put the return side chain on the little idler (no RD is designed with a spring strong enough to manage the weight of 3+ feet of flopping chain) is that on the big ring and big rear sprocket, the chain MIGHT be banging up against the bottom of the swingarm where the shock mounts when a rider is pedalling and the chain is tight.
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Old 07-27-09, 06:54 AM   #45
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I kind of doubt the housings used on the Walmart recumbent are the same you bought separately that night at Walmart though it is interesting the issues are similar. But the fact remains that using such long cable runs, especially for the rear derailluer should be as friction free as possible. But so far I don't think the manufacturer is taking that into consideration unless the issue has been resolved with the latest shipment of bikes recieved by Walmart.

Edward Wong III

EDIT: It seems that the recumbent is again sold out. I just checked on Walmart's website a few minutes ago. Apparently they're selling quite well.
The manufacturer isn't going to spend $5 on braided shifter cable housings when they can buy 500 feet of wound housing for the same amount. They aren't building a boutique bike, they're building a box-store bike. The WM bents will get the same housings as every other WM bike and how crisp the shifting is, is predominantly a result of how apathetic the minimum wage employee is, that got pulled away from stacking shovels so that he/she could assemble some bikes for a couple hours. The majority of people that buy a WM bike will generally leave it in one gear anyway, and just grind away. Right or wrong, that's the way it is and for a second time, it certainly isn't hurting sales. It is absolutely no different than when WM was selling Evox bents that looked much the same, AND they were even less expensive. Those flew out of the stores too. These bents aren't built for, or being bought by, people who are concerned with cable housing specs or low rolling resistance tires. A savvy buyer will see that $10 in cable housings and $30 is smoother tires will get them a fine bent that would cost $1000+ if they were to go buy a bent with those things already installed and a fancier "boutique" brand sticker on the side of the frame.
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Old 07-27-09, 11:05 AM   #46
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To prevent or minimize pogo, the rear tire's contact patch, the pivot and the CoG need to be lined up. The bent is obviously not built to accomodate that.
Nor are most other suspended 'bents, including the refined, $3000 HPVelotechnik Speedmachine. While the SM certainly comes close, just changing riders can spoil the dynamics. Bottom line, it's not critical providing a reasonable attempt is made to align the load path of the drive side chain thru or near the swing arm's pivot. Further, I doubt your typical WalMart, shopper will be capable of producing enough watts to even recognize what pogo-ing really is,.. let alone, understand it's adverse effects. Trust me, I've seen a lot worse examples of 'suspended' recumbents than Wally's.


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(no RD is designed with a spring strong enough to manage the weight of 3+ feet of flopping chain)
The distance between the BB and the rear derailleur hanger on the 'bent pictured below is 49.75" (1263.65 mm). Been riding that beast 5 years now with absolutely no adverse effects.

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Old 07-28-09, 10:39 AM   #47
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I totally agree with you. I never said that this is an attempt at a boutique bike. It's the elitist who seem to be over reacting negatively about this bike, and one poster on BROL even went so far to say that he has "inspected" one, and came to the conclusion that the reviews on the Hyper Insight are "too kind".

I suppose that anyone with some fundamental knowledge on how brake, and derailleur systems work can figure out what to do to optimize this bike's shifting, and wind up with a decent functional recumbent for little money. Nothing wrong with that.

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The manufacturer isn't going to spend $5 on braided shifter cable housings when they can buy 500 feet of wound housing for the same amount. They aren't building a boutique bike, they're building a box-store bike. The WM bents will get the same housings as every other WM bike and how crisp the shifting is, is predominantly a result of how apathetic the minimum wage employee is, that got pulled away from stacking shovels so that he/she could assemble some bikes for a couple hours. The majority of people that buy a WM bike will generally leave it in one gear anyway, and just grind away. Right or wrong, that's the way it is and for a second time, it certainly isn't hurting sales. It is absolutely no different than when WM was selling Evox bents that looked much the same, AND they were even less expensive. Those flew out of the stores too. These bents aren't built for, or being bought by, people who are concerned with cable housing specs or low rolling resistance tires. A savvy buyer will see that $10 in cable housings and $30 is smoother tires will get them a fine bent that would cost $1000+ if they were to go buy a bent with those things already installed and a fancier "boutique" brand sticker on the side of the frame.
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Old 07-28-09, 11:13 AM   #48
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I totally agree with you. I never said that this is an attempt at a boutique bike. It's the elitist who seem to be over reacting negatively about this bike, and one poster on BROL even went so far to say that he has "inspected" one, and came to the conclusion that the reviews on the Hyper Insight are "too kind".

I suppose that anyone with some fundamental knowledge on how brake, and derailleur systems work can figure out what to do to optimize this bike's shifting, and wind up with a decent functional recumbent for little money. Nothing wrong with that.

Edward Wong III
Oh, I know you don't think it's a boutique bike. This bent is for John and Jane Average. The "boutique" crowd can't seem to get their head around that. I agree with you, I think it is elitism. I think somewhere deep down inside them, they are pretty shocked and pissed off that someone might be able to get a bent that costs 1/10th of what they paid, and this somehow drives them into some kind of reverse-justification rant where they are attempting to justify in their own mind why they paid what they did.
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Old 07-28-09, 02:30 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by 25hz View Post
Oh, I know you don't think it's a boutique bike. This bent is for John and Jane Average. The "boutique" crowd can't seem to get their head around that. I agree with you, I think it is elitism. I think somewhere deep down inside them, they are pretty shocked and pissed off that someone might be able to get a bent that costs 1/10th of what they paid, and this somehow drives them into some kind of reverse-justification rant where they are attempting to justify in their own mind why they paid what they did.
Tim, yes, I certainly agree. However, I can understand the skepticism because I, myself have dropped serious green stuff at big box stores and ultimately end up on the losing end. We all realize it can easily go either way, especially when the price seems 'just too unbelievable'. That said, the fact that Mr. Schlittler openly admitted upgrading one, including a premium seat swap, should be a strong indicator that the bike has serious potential.

BTW, congrats on your success with your tilter - you've raised the bar, and inspired me to start sifting thru my piles again and start scribbling illegible 'chicken scratches' on restaurant napkins. Another thread perhaps.
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Old 07-28-09, 07:03 PM   #50
Bobsk8
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Originally Posted by PaPa View Post
Tim, yes, I certainly agree. However, I can understand the skepticism because I, myself have dropped serious green stuff at big box stores and ultimately end up on the losing end. We all realize it can easily go either way, especially when the price seems 'just too unbelievable'. That said, the fact that Mr. Schlittler openly admitted upgrading one, including a premium seat swap, should be a strong indicator that the bike has serious potential.

BTW, congrats on your success with your tilter - you've raised the bar, and inspired me to start sifting thru my piles again and start scribbling illegible 'chicken scratches' on restaurant napkins. Another thread perhaps.

I am just wondering what would be the result, if someone went into one of these big box stores and bought a Huffy, brought it home and started upgrading all the components on it, seat, gearing, derailleurs, brakes, etc... What would be the point??? Would it be said that the Huffy is a decent bike, all it needs is all new parts, and then the Huffy would have "serious potential" ????
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