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Old 12-15-12, 07:08 PM   #1
MatrixClaw
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Used Women's Bike <$200?

Hey guys,

Not really sure if this is the right forum or not... but my girlfriend has decided she wants to start biking to school and work, instead of driving, to save money on gas, and also become more active with exercise. Not only that, but it's one of those rare occasions where taking a bike may actually be quicker than driving to school for her (she rides the light rail to ASU, since a parking permit is way too expensive, even though she only lives about 3 miles from campus, she drives about 10 to get onto the light rail).

Now, she bought a cheap bike from Wal-Mart a few years ago, and low and behold, the thing fell apart after a few months, and the repairs would cost more than the bike itself was. She doesn't want me to spend much on her, but I also don't want to get her a piece of junk. Realistically, the most I can really spend right now is $200, obviously the cheaper the better, but I don't want to compromise on quality, either. I'd be buying used, hopefully off of Craiglist, because I know a quality new bike in this price range really isn't doable. The lighter the bike is, the better, but again, quality is most important.

She told me the bike she has now is a 24", but being that she's only 5'3", that seems a tad big to me, but then again, I'm no expert on bikes. Ultimately, I was hoping to compile a good list of bikes locally and then take her out to try them out, so she can decide which she likes best, but at the same time, I don't really want her knowing how much I spent on the bike, so that might not be a viable option. I might have to use a stand-in girl who's of similar size

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 12-15-12, 10:54 PM   #2
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Well 24 inch is way too big for her. With her at 5’3”, I am not sure what size she would be: maybe a 49 cm or 19 inch. That should at least be in the ball park and much better than what she has now. I’d suggest finding a friend that knows about bikes and have him/her help you search on CL. But CL is likely your best bet in that price range.
Good luck.
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Old 12-16-12, 01:46 PM   #3
MatrixClaw
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The thing is, I don't really have any friends who know anything about bikes

I ride an older Specialized Stumpjumper that's done me well for several years, but I can't afford to drop that kind of cash on a bike for her, or for me for that matter (it was a gift from one of my grandparents who wasn't using it). My knowledge of bikes is quite limited, and my knowledge of women's bikes is even less. The only friends I have that are into bicycling don't own anything better than your "high end" Wal-Mart stuff.
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Old 12-17-12, 08:01 PM   #4
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That’s a tough one. You might check out Play it again sports or better find a bicycle store that sells used bikes. You may luck out.
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Old 12-18-12, 07:47 AM   #5
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I live in Phx. and I have been looking for a bike for my wife (she's 5'7"). I found a nice Trek 820 for $80.00. while I was looking I found a number of other Treks 9and others) on Craig's List that would be great candidates for your girlfriend.
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Old 12-18-12, 11:47 PM   #6
MatrixClaw
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Hmmm, I'll definitely check into those stores and the Treks. Thanks!
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Old 12-19-12, 12:34 AM   #7
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First, welcome to Bike Forums. Now down to business...

-Your girlfriend was honest when she told you she rode a 24". Remember, Wally World sizes their bikes by the wheel size and not the frame (which is more of a One Size Fits, Maybe). So, at 5'3", she got the right 'size' from them.

-Check out the various shops in Tempe and Phoenix (I take it that's where y'all are at, right?). See if any do rentals and if so, inquire about possibly buying one of their older models- every rental item in history gets sold off at some point.

-Last but not least, ASU has a bike co-op. Probably won't help buying a bike, but will help in servicing one or possibly evaluating any CL finds.
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Old 12-22-12, 07:00 PM   #8
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Ended up buying a really nice Specialized from Bicycle Exchange. Mike's Bike Chalet offered me a great deal on a new rode bike, but the Specialized was just too good to pass up. It's definitely seen it's fair share of riding, but the warranty and trade-in offer I got with it was well worth it. Hell, it rides better than my Stumpjumper :\
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Old 01-06-13, 10:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MatrixClaw View Post
Ended up buying a really nice Specialized from Bicycle Exchange. Mike's Bike Chalet offered me a great deal on a new rode bike, but the Specialized was just too good to pass up. It's definitely seen it's fair share of riding, but the warranty and trade-in offer I got with it was well worth it. Hell, it rides better than my Stumpjumper :\
Awesome! I`m kind of late to this party, but now that she`s been riding it for a few weeks, how`s she liking it? I don`t know Phoenix, but "Bicycle Exchange" sounds like a used bike shop, and used is the best way to get a bigger bang (IMO) for any larger purchase. Warranty has to be a nice bonus too for somebody who claims he doesn`t know bikes and doesn`t have any friends who do.
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