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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

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Old 08-21-06, 03:10 PM   #1
sandy_pangle
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Need advice on Mercier Serpens Steel Bike

Can anybody give me advice or experience concerning the Mercier Serpens Bikes off Ebay?
For $1247, this seems almost too good to be true. I noticed on an earlier post on a ride in the LA area that someone was hanging one on a bike rack but I can't seem to find the post again. I'm about to pull the trigger here....I just want to make sure I don't commit suicide .

Here are the specs:


Frame Reynolds 853 double-butted High Grade Air Hardened Steel
Fork Reynolds Ouzo Comp Carbon Fiber / Aluminum Steerer
Headset FSA 36deg Sealed Cartridge Bearing for Threadless
Crankset Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600 52/39/30T
Bottom Bracket Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600 Triple Integrated with Crankset
Pedals None
Front Derailleur Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600 Triple
Rear Derailleur Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600 Triple
Shifters Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600 STI (Flight Deck Compatible)
Cassette/Freewheel Shimano NEW 10 speed Ultegra 6600 12-23T
Chain Shimano NEW 10 speed Ultegra 6600
Hubs Ritchey Pro Aero Black anodized, sealed precision bearings
Spokes Stainless
Rims Ritchey OCR Aero Pro, black anodized with machined braking surface
Tires Kenda Racing Kaliente Kevlar Bead 700x23c
Brakes Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600
Brake Levers Shimano NEW 30 speed Ultegra 6600 STI
Handlebar Ritchey BioMax Ergo Butted Aluminum 6061
Stem Ritchey Threadless
Tape/Grip Cork
Saddle Velo Racing
Seat Post Ritchey


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BY THE WAY, MERCIER HAS THIS REYNOLDS 853 FRAME MADE BY THE SAME CUSTOM FRAME SHOP {LICENSED BY REYNOLDS** THAT MAKES FRAMES FOR BIANCHI, MOTOBECANE, FUJI, AND SPECIALIZED. THE FRAME QUALITY IS TOP NOTCH.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PLEASE CONSIDER THE VALUE OF THE COMPONENTS ON THIS BIKE: A FULL ULTEGRA GROUP IN TRIPLE IS $1095 MAIL-ORDER OR IN A SHOP; RITCHEY PRO HAND-BUILT WHEELS ARE $450; RITCHEY BAR, STEM, AND SEAT POST TOGETHER ARE $150; A REYNOLDS OUZO FORK IS $300; ANY QUALITY REYNOLDS 853 FRAME IS MINIMUM $600 -- PLUS FSA HEADSET, KENDA TIRES, VELO SADDLE -- THE WHOLE PACKAGE IS WORTH OVER THE LIST PRICE OF $2495 - AND I AM SELLING THE BIKE AT EXACTLY 50% OFF LIST! {YOU SAVE OVER $1200!**
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Old 08-21-06, 03:25 PM   #2
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Is this another Bikes Direct brand?
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Old 08-21-06, 03:50 PM   #3
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I'm not sure.
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Old 08-21-06, 03:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnny99
Is this another Bikes Direct brand?

Yes.

OP, see any other BD thread on here. Good bikes for the most part, if you are a good wrench and want to take it apart and put it together properly when you get it, or you ant to take it to the LBS to have them do it.

IMHO, a good deal for those kind of components on a full bike.

And don't people come in here and start calling the OP a shill.
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Old 08-21-06, 04:05 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by lecterman
Yes.

OP, see any other BD thread on here. Good bikes for the most part, if you are a good wrench and want to take it apart and put it together properly when you get it, or you ant to take it to the LBS to have them do it.

IMHO, a good deal for those kind of components on a full bike.

And don't people come in here and start calling the OP a shill.
who cares were the bike comes from as long as the OP is happy with it and it will preforme reliable
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Old 08-21-06, 04:11 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryanparrish
who cares were the bike comes from as long as the OP is happy with it and it will preforme reliable
He is saying that BD bikes are not reliable. Assembly is shoddy and the buyer has to be mechanically competent to identify and fix all the mistakes.
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Old 08-21-06, 05:42 PM   #7
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I have the Mercier Corvus and put over 14000 miles on it before going to a recumbent. I rode it on rides from 200k to 400k. It's a great bike. I can only image the serpens would be better. I did have to do a little work on it when I got it (I got it from cycle spectrum which is the store version of Bikes Direct).
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Old 08-21-06, 06:46 PM   #8
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I've got a 2006 Serpens with about 3000 miles on it, and it's a great ride.

Yes, it's a Bikes Direct brand. I am experienced mechanically, so any adjustments and assembly were easy. Even so, my LBS has a sign that advertises that they will assemble boxed up bikes for $60.

I've had exactly two problems with the bike so far, and both of them involve cable housings. The shifter cable housings as shipped were a little too short and would bind when the bars were turned all the way. Simple enough to fix, and cost me about $2. Later, one of those replacement housings had some issues (it may have been damaged while parked in my garage or on a bike rack. I'm not sure) and had to be replaced. My only other criticism is a personal opinion, I think the graphics are kinda ugly and cheap llooking. But I bought the bike to ride the wheels off of it, and not to be some sort of beauty queen.

That's it. The bike fully assembled with pedals is a little less than 20lbs. The seat and chain stay are not 853, but everything else is. All the other components are as advertised. The wheels are pretty strong as I've beat the crap out of them and have had no issues. The bike rides and shifts very smoothly. I think it's a great deal for $1300.

I do not work for Bikes Direct, nor am I paid for my endorsement. I am, however, related to alanbikehouston, and I would like to mention that the entire family would like to disown him.

Az
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Old 08-21-06, 07:14 PM   #9
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I just pulled the trigger!!! Ya'll pray for me!! It just seemed like too good of a deal. I'll admit that I'm not that fond of the paint job but the equipment list is great for a sub $1300 bike.
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Old 08-21-06, 07:46 PM   #10
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I'm also in Georgia, so I'll keep a look out for another bike like mine.

Mine's all stock except for the seat and tires.

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Old 08-21-06, 08:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandy_pangle
I just pulled the trigger!!! Ya'll pray for me!! It just seemed like too good of a deal. I'll admit that I'm not that fond of the paint job but the equipment list is great for a sub $1300 bike.
It sounds like you've got a bike that appeals to you at a good price. With proper assembly and adjustment you should be just fine. My '01 KHS Flite 800 is also Reynolds 853 and it rides very smoothly. Good luck!
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Old 08-21-06, 08:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnny99
He is saying that BD bikes are not reliable. Assembly is shoddy and the buyer has to be mechanically competent to identify and fix all the mistakes.
Or take it to an LBS. And frankly, I would do the same thing with ANY mail order bike, not just BD bikes.
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Old 08-21-06, 08:47 PM   #13
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I've been looking at that bike for a while. Please keep us all posted.
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