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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 06-30-11, 06:10 PM   #1
cal_gundert05
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Do You Have Rules For Buying Parts?

Does anyone else have rules that they try to follow when it comes to buying bike parts or accessories (or anything else, really)? Like you'll only buy parts if you can get them at 50% MSRP, if they're used, if they're made in America or not made in China or Taiwan, or you'll only buy stuff from your LBS, etc.

I had an IRO and I currently have an old road bike, but I'm gonna ditch that when I finish building another fixed gear, and I'm going back and forth between getting parts I really like (Spicer track frame, 3TTT Mutant, Sugino 68 bb, Thomson seat post, Brooks saddle, etc--kinda pricey) and those that just work, so I'm looking for a rule to constrain my costs while allowing my to get something I like; I kinda like the idea of only buying used/pre-owned things, as I'm kind of at the mercy of circumstance and not free to just buy anything I want.

Another new rule (and it's kind of moot, since I'm trying to lose a few pounds) is to get ice cream in a cone only, with no cup or spoon; I don't like garbage, for one thing, and there's a stylistic difference between eating from a cone and eating from a cup.

Anyway, I guess I wanted to share and see if anyone else does this kinda thing.
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Old 06-30-11, 06:14 PM   #2
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no rules, but i never pay msrp, always check for a coupon code before checkout, ebay as much as possible & wait for it to go on sale if I don't really need it.
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Old 06-30-11, 06:15 PM   #3
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I generally buy local (local fixed forum, CL and co-op mostly) as I do not shop online and I don't usually go for name-brand stuff unless I can get them for cheap.
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Old 06-30-11, 06:16 PM   #4
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Buy something that will last, look at reviews, but also go with your gut sometimes. I also try to stay away from bottom of the line. I don't want to ride crap :/

EDIT: I buy local as well., if that matters.
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Old 06-30-11, 06:17 PM   #5
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I usually force myself to wait for good deals. I buy most of my stuff used. I don't mind. Or I just spend forever collecting all the parts... I call them my winter/summer break projects to keep me occupied. That's how I built my TET for $700 and that's how I plan on building my FTP for less than $500 if all goes well.

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Old 06-30-11, 06:31 PM   #6
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wait until I can get my parents to buy it one way or another. It just got me a 105 group set
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Old 06-30-11, 06:33 PM   #7
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Naaaiiiceee. 5600?
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Old 06-30-11, 06:34 PM   #8
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:nod:
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Old 06-30-11, 06:38 PM   #9
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Congrats!

Moar details on the build?
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Old 06-30-11, 06:42 PM   #10
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the only detail is that it was meant for my brother buy my parents decided that I should have it. just replacing my tiagra parts
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Old 06-30-11, 07:02 PM   #11
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I need rules, I've been too impulsive lately. The problem is you can always find good deals on just about anything online. I should limit myself to small local shops.
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Old 06-30-11, 07:31 PM   #12
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I generally try to go by a monthly free spending budget to preserve our savings for a monthly quota which increases month by month, half carries on from the unused amount of the previous month. It's a mutual thing, my wife does the same thing for clothing (her thing) although we usually end up wrecking the entire system with our wants of pricey things such as expensive although great deals on parts and womanly desires on her end.

I always go for name brand and avoid the generic stuff at all costs, as from experience I always end up upgrading to the higher end version/ model/thing I wanted originally eventually due to a relentless want that usually sets in after a week or so; I nearly paid the price with my previous car. I have never owned a single piece of origin 8 or 18 inch.

I always look for parts used on craigslist and ebay before I get them new from the internet or my LBS (there's a $10 - $15 buffer price difference for me when considering LBS or online because supporting your LBS is always good karma and shipping prices always nail any great deal on the web; the price range depending how much I like the shop aswell); as there are always gently used parts that are heavily discounted because of the fact.

For craigslist I always try to haggle/ negociate unless it's a killer deal being first come, first serve.
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Old 06-30-11, 07:53 PM   #13
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I only buy stuff I don't actually need.
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Old 06-30-11, 07:55 PM   #14
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never pay retail
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Old 06-30-11, 08:42 PM   #15
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i usually do the craigslist/ebay route before I go retail.

unless it's tires/tubes/something small that I need right away. Then I support my LBS.
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Old 06-30-11, 08:49 PM   #16
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My LBSs all suck. Of the ones I've been to at home or at school (8 total), all the mechanics and sales people have been unprofessional, rude, incompetent, or the place is poorly stocked. There is one at school that I can go to to hang out and the owner is super chill chill, but his stock of parts is pretty low. Now the internet and local co-op get 99.9% of my business because their prices are unbeatable and one or the other always has what I want.
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Old 06-30-11, 08:57 PM   #17
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Also forgot to mention, I also have a way of getting first come first serve killer deals on craigslist, when there's been someone ahead of you to claim the item; I try to offer ~$5 - 20 (depending on the item and asking price), you know, to sweeten the deal/ steer the seller in my favor.
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Old 06-30-11, 09:56 PM   #18
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1. Never pay retail...
2. Avoid LBS's...most near me have insane markups and/or have rude staff that act like I should feel privileged to step foot in their shop.
3. Reasearch and try to find actual upgrades that will last.
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Old 06-30-11, 10:56 PM   #19
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i haggle the shop. i hate paying msrp gets me cheep frames and tires and free stuff. i guess the one rule i have is if i need it and need to buy it it better be baller
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Old 06-30-11, 11:05 PM   #20
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i have two rules:

1) i have to want it. if i don't want it i don't buy it.

2) i have to have the money. I don't buy anything on layaway or with credit.

basically this means the only stuff i don't buy is either too expensive or i just don't want it.

otherwise i put myself into the poorhouse buying **** i don't need for way too much money. it's evident by my bikes and how much parts change per miles ridden.

i ride a lot of miles, just go through too many parts doing it.
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Old 07-01-11, 07:52 AM   #21
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Quote:
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I need rules, I've been too impulsive lately. The problem is you can always find good deals on just about anything online.
Exactly. I felt the same way when using LimeWire to download music, so I got rid of it all and stuck to cd's and live recordings from archive.org and sugarmegs.org.

To yummygooey and others who shop online due to poorly stocked or overpriced LBSs, have you asked those shops about getting a discount on special orders? If it's for a part available through QBP or another big distributor, it shouldn't be any extra trouble to order or receive, and the shop doesn't have to spend extra time or space selling or storing it, so they might cut you a deal. I've never done this myself, but it seems that a shop would appreciate your commitment to them.

Another couple rules I was considering for my upcoming build are 1) only splurge on bearing components (hubs, bb, headset), and 2) only splurge on parts where the bike contacts myself or the road (saddle, handlebar, bar tape, pedals, tires). But with fixed gears, nearly every part is just one degree of separation from these parts, so it doesn't help much.
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Old 07-01-11, 10:01 AM   #22
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I do online surveys through a site that reimburses me with Amazon gift cards. This is the major part of my bike budget. I only buy parts en mass to save on shipping.

There's one LBS here that I like because they don't have attitude and they work on BMX and BSO's: This means they carry a lot of stuff compatible with the old American bikes I tend to ride. I use them when I'm not sure exactly what I need, or if I have to have a part right now. Aside from tires, they're a little higher than ordering online. I live in the boonies, so dropping by there isn't convenient.

People either give me bikes, or I find them in flea markets. When Craigslist does have a bike, it's overpriced.
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Old 07-01-11, 11:25 AM   #23
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the best stuff, used lightly, can be a great value. i have put together both red and record bikes at ~25% msrp, again...most parts used. it helps if you are mechanically inclined enough to asses condition and install/config on your own. shops *love it* when you bring them a box of greasy parts that you bought elsewhere...

also, the UK sites are generally quite a good deal. ribble, wiggle, probikekit, others? bonktown has crazy deals too, if you stay on top of them. i got a $250 time carbon stem for like $49 delivered. and a $99 campy carbon square taper crank at nashbar...sold the new 10s road rings for almost that much, put an 1/8" miche on it and run it on the sputnik today. total cost ~$75.
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