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What makes an older bike worth something?

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What makes an older bike worth something?

Old 07-03-11, 03:14 PM
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worldtraveller
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What makes an older bike worth something?

What things would be considered to make a bike that is older worth something.

for example I have an 92 Specialized Rockhopper? any way i could make it worth something? for resale. or am i just best to fix it up and ride it myself for my own enjoyment?
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Old 07-03-11, 03:39 PM
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What makes a vintage bike worth something? First, it needs to be a racing bike or a touring bike. MTBs have minimal value. Yes, there are exceptions, but a 1993 Rockhopper was a basic MTB. Best for personal use.

Beyond that, the condition, frame material, component grade, and desirability (like Celeste Bianchis, steel Trek road bikes, Cannondales, Italian bikes in general).

Best way to make it worth something is to clean it really well, and put ZERO $$ into it (if the plan is to sell it). When I used to try to flip MTBs, I kept an eye out for cheap donor bikes to supply anything from tires, pedals, grips, tubes. If I had to buy that stuff at retail, the margin would be zero or even negative.


In some urban areas, people turn basic MTBs into road/commuters and sell them to the recreational crowd.

Now for personal use, I think the old rigid frame MTBs are great. We have three in the family fleet right now.

Last edited by wrk101; 07-03-11 at 03:45 PM.
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Old 07-03-11, 08:37 PM
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What makes a bike worth something? ebay and two people who really want the bike.

+1 on wrk101's advice; the Rockhopper ain't gonna make you rich.
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Old 07-03-11, 08:47 PM
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Quality, plain and simple. If it was. Well well constructed bike when new and was built with upper end components, then it should be worth something now.
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Old 07-03-11, 08:59 PM
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Good question and one that I try to answer. Spend a bit of time looking through these pages and you will be able to get some ideas as to what imparts vintage value.

I agree on the mountain bicycle comments others have made. However, those comments apply to today, not what will be considered collectible or valuable tomorrow. Who would have ever thought old road bicycles were worth something? Heck, the people in Thunder Bay are still throwing them away at the local Dump on a regular basis...

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Old 07-03-11, 09:03 PM
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Hello fellow Thunder Bay person

I am in Thunder Bay as well.

So why would all mountain bikes not be worth anything? even high end ones?
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Old 07-03-11, 09:31 PM
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Originally Posted by worldtraveller View Post
Hello fellow Thunder Bay person

I am in Thunder Bay as well.

So why would all mountain bikes not be worth anything? even high end ones?
There really is no large vintage mtb. market yet. Early bikes like what was used in the Northern California early days are few, gone, modified, or squirreled away. Early rigid bikes like those built by Ritchey, Breeze , Charlie Cunningham, or marketed by Gary Fisher have a market.
Dirt bikes are well known for being used up and not cared for. Because of this and the technology evolves fast, they depreciate fast,

There will be a vintage market at some point, like early lugged Stumpjumpers are beginning to be noticed, but what will gain value? Who knows beyond what I have mentioned. Maybe early Kleins or Yetis will... Maybe Ibis.
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Old 07-04-11, 06:28 AM
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Originally Posted by worldtraveller View Post
Hello fellow Thunder Bay person

I am in Thunder Bay as well.

So why would all mountain bikes not be worth anything? even high end ones?
Because there are no buyers (and plenty of sellers).

Anybody want TV sets from the 1980s? Someday they will be collectible, but not now.

Last edited by wrk101; 07-04-11 at 06:34 AM.
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