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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 07-22-08, 10:22 PM   #1
nsinclair.ak
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Best time of year to purchase a new bike?

I'm going to be purchasing my first road cycle soon...I will have all the funds by mid-August. I am willing to spend $1000 for a bike, and hopefully shoes and pedals...Should I buy it as soon as I have all the money, or is it best to wait for a certain month when I could potentially get a "last years model" for cheaper. Thank you for the help....
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Old 07-22-08, 10:28 PM   #2
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I would hold out untill September or maybe later after Interbike when the new models start rolling out. Or you can see if your LBS has any thing that is NOS. I am not taking vintage or anything, but the shop I worked at has 2 2004 Burley Fox Hollows (Mmmmm. OX platinum) for 25% off of what they were and I would bet that they would come down alittle still to move it off the floor.
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Old 07-22-08, 10:40 PM   #3
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July is the worst time to buy a roadbike. January/February is usually the best (post Christmas, pre-season).
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Old 07-22-08, 10:44 PM   #4
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I bet you can find some really good deals in the dead of winter, especially in the northern states. Demand would be, I'm assuming - much lower at that point.

Here's something else to try: I set up filtered RSS feeds on craigslist and eBay so only listings with the words "ultegra" or "dura-ace" in a certain price range would make it through to my notifications. As soon as someone posted a listing on craigslist, it was there in my RSS feed. Within minutes of being posted, I could get on the phone and close the sell thereby eliminating the possibility of competing with other potential buyers. The feed for eBay was a reverse-feed so it would only show me auctions ending within 24 hours to give me ample time to do research on a killer deal I found. No need to scrounge through craigslist or eBay every single day. The nice thing is that it digs deep into the eBay listings that many people seem to skim over. I found so many good deals this way.

I ended up with an aluminum frame with carbon fork and seat stay - full Ultegra components - about 100 miles on it for $700. I think that's a pretty good deal, but if I had waited longer I could have ended up with something better. You'd be surprised how many deals slip by under the radar.
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Old 07-22-08, 10:46 PM   #5
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July is the worst time to buy a roadbike. January/February is usually the best (post Christmas, pre-season).
Yah, a month or two after the end of january when bike shops have to move older bikes out and slash the prices.
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Old 07-22-08, 11:10 PM   #6
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Bike shops often have end-of-season sales in the fall. However, if you are looking for something in particular, selection of models and sizes can be very spotty by then. Popular bikes like Trek carbon bikes are often sold out before the next year's models show up.
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Old 07-22-08, 11:12 PM   #7
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August is good too. It's after the road bike season and many shops are trying to close out their previous year's models in time to restock for the christmas season and the next year. Some good deals can be had. The absolute worse time to buy is May and June, I'd suspect.
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Old 07-22-08, 11:23 PM   #8
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Keep in mind, for what you're looking to spend, INCLUDING accessories, you're looking at a very entry-level bike.
You may want to put that money down on something higher-up and make payments on the rest.
As you get into cycling, and bikes specifically, you will go crazy with upgrades and "should have" second guessing yourself.
It's always cheaper to buy right the first time.
Good luck.


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Old 07-23-08, 12:06 AM   #9
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Keep in mind, for what you're looking to spend, INCLUDING accessories, you're looking at a very entry-level bike.
You may want to put that money down on something higher-up and make payments on the rest.
As you get into cycling, and bikes specifically, you will go crazy with upgrades and "should have" second guessing yourself.
It's always cheaper to buy right the first time.
Good luck.


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No. Fail.

A good rule is to never finance something that depreciates in value. It is especially insane to finance a bike. If you are new to the sport, anything will do. Buy only what you can afford with cash on hand. You really don't need all the accessories we all have come to rely on. First bike, get a $30 helmet, spare tube, patch kit, cheap frame pump and a cheap floor pump. If you've got money left over, get a set of pedals and shoes. You can defer everything else.

Buy used if you cannot afford to buy new.
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Old 07-23-08, 02:57 AM   #10
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Don't buy anything you can't pay off by the end of the month. That goes for bikes, electronics, and pretty much anything not immediately required for survival. I would recommend looking for a used or cheaper bicycle, in order to save money for necessary accessories (helmet, pump, etc) and future upgrades. You don't need a $1000 bicycle to get into cycling, regardless of how many here state otherwise. As with any other bit of gear, get what's best for you, and don't bother trying to prove yourself to anyone else.
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Old 07-23-08, 03:44 AM   #11
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Two things from a person in the bike business:

1. A purchase under $1,000 is a nice bike, but it is also entry level. Entry level bikes move often. In our case, we can run through a rack of them on a good weekend. The entire rack. Therefore there are no end of season "we want to get rid of the old bike" deals. We don't have them and the demand is high. Depending on where you are going to shop, that may also be the case.

Really good deals tend to be had on bikes that are more expensive.

2. This has been a summer that has beaten all projections for sales. Many shops have very low inventory while they are awaiting new bikes and the major manufacturers begin to ship out '09 bikes. Obviously, with this scenario there are going to be fewer deals.

And look out on '09's. Giant shippped a "Defy" which is basically the OCR3. They went up $100, which is close to a 15% increase.

Bottom line...now is a good time to buy a bike, like what you are looking for. Next year's models will be 15-20% higher.

Someone mentioned Interbike...the manufacturers have private rollouts with dealers. Most of these have happened and we are already getting some 09 bikes.
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Old 07-23-08, 03:54 AM   #12
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It's all friggin VAPORWARE. Show me the CF and the DA RW.
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Old 07-23-08, 06:05 AM   #13
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I have found October/November to the be the best time to get deals on mid to high range bikes.
As some have noted, on entry level bikes you are going to have a more difficult time finding season based deals.
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Old 07-23-08, 07:26 AM   #14
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just after interbike is the best time. We blow out all our stuff for cheap waiting for all our new stuff.
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Old 07-23-08, 07:32 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
A good rule is to never finance something that depreciates in value. It is especially insane to finance a bike. If you are new to the sport, anything will do. Buy only what you can afford with cash on hand. You really don't need all the accessories we all have come to rely on. First bike, get a $30 helmet, spare tube, patch kit, cheap frame pump and a cheap floor pump. If you've got money left over, get a set of pedals and shoes. You can defer everything else.
+1

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Buy used if you cannot afford to buy new.
+1 more.
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Old 07-23-08, 09:06 AM   #16
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Buy it now: you can't start riding until you get a bike! What's a few extra bucks? Go used or cheap if you need to.
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Old 07-23-08, 12:36 PM   #17
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Best time of year: Today.

Go ride.

How long do you want to wait to get in shape? If you have a need now, buy now. Saving $100-200, or getting that latest model will be irrelevant to you in a couple months time. But if you wait a few months, you'll be that much behind the person who jumped in earlier.
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Old 07-23-08, 12:45 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
No. Fail.

A good rule is to never finance something that depreciates in value. It is especially insane to finance a bike. If you are new to the sport, anything will do. Buy only what you can afford with cash on hand. You really don't need all the accessories we all have come to rely on. First bike, get a $30 helmet, spare tube, patch kit, cheap frame pump and a cheap floor pump. If you've got money left over, get a set of pedals and shoes. You can defer everything else.

Buy used if you cannot afford to buy new.
Bingo. I've not always followed this rule, but: the only purchases for which you should consider borrowing money are a house and an education -- two things that reap positive returns, unlike bikes, cars, TV sets, etc.
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Old 07-23-08, 12:46 PM   #19
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Bike shops around here are dumping old stock, of course we're about 8 weeks from snowing.
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Old 07-23-08, 01:12 PM   #20
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Bingo. I've not always followed this rule, but: the only purchases for which you should consider borrowing money are a house and an education -- two things that reap positive returns, unlike bikes, cars, TV sets, etc.
Yea... and what happens if your bike is totaled in a crash? You owe money on a bike that no longer exists.
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Old 07-23-08, 01:14 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
No. Fail.

A good rule is to never finance something that depreciates in value. It is especially insane to finance a bike. If you are new to the sport, anything will do. Buy only what you can afford with cash on hand. You really don't need all the accessories we all have come to rely on. First bike, get a $30 helmet, spare tube, patch kit, cheap frame pump and a cheap floor pump. If you've got money left over, get a set of pedals and shoes. You can defer everything else.

Buy used if you cannot afford to buy new.
I am not planning on financing anything, I have been saving up what I can, and I will only buy what is in my reach...
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Originally Posted by daoswald View Post
Best time of year: Today.

Go ride.

How long do you want to wait to get in shape? If you have a need now, buy now. Saving $100-200, or getting that latest model will be irrelevant to you in a couple months time. But if you wait a few months, you'll be that much behind the person who jumped in earlier.
This has been my thinking. I just wanted to get some feedback. I will probably be purchasing mid-august when I have all of my funds.

Thank you to everyone for the helpful and quick replies!
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Old 07-23-08, 01:18 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by 80vette View Post
I have found October/November to the be the best time to get deals on mid to high range bikes.
I agree with this. I bought a $1700 Ultegra road bike for $750 in early November. It was a 3 year old model, but new, and the store was wanting to move it.
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Old 07-23-08, 01:56 PM   #23
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2004 Burley Fox Hollows (Mmmmm. OX platinum) for 25% off of what they were and I would bet that they would come down alittle still to move it off the floor.
I would ask for more than 25% off a 4 year old bike

Last month there wasn't jack at the LBS's around here, I couldn't even get my color choice after driving to 3 stores. But at least I got my size. They're all pretty bare waiting for the new models (more expensive) to come in

I'd buy in the winter if it were up to me. I bought my mountain bike in February and got a decent deal.
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