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Help me find a CL bargain under $400

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Help me find a CL bargain under $400

Old 07-17-16, 02:36 AM
  #1  
mcompton1973
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Help me find a CL bargain under $400

I am 225 on a 5'9.5" in frame.
I have a pretty lean build, big gut.
I was an active duty Marine 20 years ago...in great shape..got lazy, and its all in my gut.

When active duty I rode a mt bike 13 miles each way to work on base.
About 10 years ago I had a Schwinn I bought for $80 and put a lot of miles on it until I moved to the country and all gravel roads.

I really enjoy cycling and think it will help me loose weight so I am gonna get another bike and just take it somewhere to ride.

Now...the real question.
I am looking for a good bike that will be fun.
I am not going to be racing...but I enjoy going fast vs the mt bikes
maybe when I get fit I will go on group rides....for now...mostly just me getting miles in.
I am thinking under $400

I have seen several bikes.
2011 Giant OCR3 - $375
92 Schwinn Paramount Series 3 - $300 (in 92 was this still the top of the line?)
2000 KHS Flight 500 - $300
Guerciotti - 250 (minimal info about model or components)
Motobecane Mirage Sport - $400 (tiagra components...aluminum frame...no age)
89 Schwinn Tempo - all 105 components - $400
GT Force with all Campy Mirage components - $450
Miele Alfa - no idea the year...early - mid 80s would guess - $350
Early 90s Bianchi Premio - $200
84 Trek 460 - $200
Canondale R400 CAAD4 - $325

Does anything stand out here in a good or bad way at all?
Any thoughts given what I am intending to do etc?
Appreciate any and all insight!
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Old 07-17-16, 04:54 AM
  #2  
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It would have been nice to include links and pictures.

I'm close to your height, so it's easy to eliminate some of these.

Too large:
Bianchi Premio - Steel Lugged Frame 1990s, 58 cm (Large)


Too large:
Giant racing bike 56cm e/c


Too small:
vintage 1984 trek 460


Too pricey:
Must Sell !!! Top of the Line Vintage Schwinn Road Bike



As for the remaining ones, the deciding factor could be to see which ones have working brifters.

I don't recognize the decals, but I'm no Italian bike expert either. Could indicate a respray.
Retro Guerciotti Bicycle


The KHS looks to be in good order.
KHS Flight 500 road bike 56cm Nice!
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Old 07-17-16, 04:55 AM
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The KHS was supposedly a good bike when new. I looked into one myself. KHS apparently gave a lot of value for the money. Condition and fit are critical. You may want to also keep an eye out for deals from Jenson, Nashbar, Performance and even Bikes Direct. CL in my neck of the woods it is hit or miss. Sooner or later, however, you find the right deal. Good luck with it!
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Old 07-17-16, 05:23 AM
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2015 54cm Soma Doublecross Disc Frameset

Only $120
Schwinn 564 road bike-54CM-PRICE IS FIRM

Haggle for under $400
Schwinn 564 road bike-54CM-PRICE IS FIRM
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Old 07-17-16, 05:39 AM
  #5  
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I'm 5'10 and ride 56, 58cm, 54s seem very small for me
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Old 07-17-16, 08:29 AM
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You might want to consider a vintage mountain bike (one with a rigid fork) or hybrid as well. They tend to be good values (usu. cheaper than road bikes) and make good all around riders with slick tires. Plus wheels can be a pain on used road bikes as they often get beat up. MTB wheels tend to hold up better over time since they're stout for road riding and most were not ridden off road. Once you get in better shape, you can look for a road bike and either sell the vintage mtb or keep it as a back up and/or commuter. They make ace commuters.
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Old 07-17-16, 09:43 AM
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Thanks for all input so far.
Thoughts.

I didnt want to include links because there were several and wasnt sure if that would be some kind of etiquette thing. So thanks for that.

At 5'9" I have always thought 56cm was about right.....and 54-58 is still good. My old Schwinn Traveler was a 58cm.

main reason I was thinking away from the mt bike was the speed factor. To me, there is something more fun about the nimbleness and speed of the road bike.

There will be no commuting in my future. I live about 60 miles from Tulsa or OKC where work and jobs are. lol.

So here are links to all of them I was looking at:

92 Paramount series 3 road bike 58cm

KHS Flight 500 road bike 56cm Nice!

Retro Guerciotti Bicycle

MOTOBECANE 700c road bike

Must Sell !!! Top of the Line Vintage Schwinn Road Bike

GT Force Road Bike Upgraded

Giant racing bike 56cm e/c

Miele Roadbike 55cm

cannondale

vintage 1984 trek 460
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Old 07-17-16, 10:07 AM
  #8  
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Man that Paramount would be cool! If I were you I would go check out the KHS. Once I went with STI I never went back to downtube shifters. Just much more convenient to use. The Giant and Cannondale would be some more I would consider
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Old 07-17-16, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by kermie View Post
Man that Paramount would be cool! If I were you I would go check out the KHS. Once I went with STI I never went back to downtube shifters. Just much more convenient to use. The Giant and Cannondale would be some more I would consider
Yes - im a fellow Okie, if that Paramount was a tad smaller , it would be in my garage now - would be a great rider, and price is good for a "keeper" , but a smidge high for a strip n flip

Same with that Cannondale- it looks barely used

The Guerciotti could be the sleeper of the bunch, but the frame decals look odd-- but with a mish-mash of Shimano parts from different eras, looks like your largely paying for the frame so knowing a couple more details about it would be good

Last edited by DMC707; 07-17-16 at 10:41 AM.
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Old 07-17-16, 11:35 AM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by kermie View Post
Man that Paramount would be cool! If I were you I would go check out the KHS. Once I went with STI I never went back to downtube shifters. Just much more convenient to use. The Giant and Cannondale would be some more I would consider
That is a little of my conundrum. Go for something truly vintage and cool...or something with a few more modern conveniences. All my road bikes have had the DT shifters....so I dont know what I am missing perhaps.

Of course my pickup is 17years old with 330k miles on it...so what do I know. lol.
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Old 07-17-16, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by mcompton1973 View Post
That is a little of my conundrum. Go for something truly vintage and cool...or something with a few more modern conveniences. All my road bikes have had the DT shifters....so I dont know what I am missing perhaps.

Of course my pickup is 17years old with 330k miles on it...so what do I know. lol.

I would say that the handlebar shifters is a little bit like having power windows in your truck ---- I have had them in my daily drivers so long I take them for granted, - but when I take my little Jeep out for some cruising, - I invariably end up cursing the manual windows as they seem like such a pain

You mentioned having a bit of a beer muscle as well,(so do I ) --- the late model shifting setups don't require you to reach down to shift , so you wind up shifting more and riding more efficiently
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Old 07-17-16, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by cycleheimer View Post
The KHS was supposedly a good bike when new. I looked into one myself. KHS apparently gave a lot of value for the money. Condition and fit are critical. You may want to also keep an eye out for deals from Jenson, Nashbar, Performance and even Bikes Direct. CL in my neck of the woods it is hit or miss. Sooner or later, however, you find the right deal. Good luck with it!
I'm too lazy to look up the bikes, but the KHS or the Tempo will kick butt. May want to make sure you can fit suitable tires for non-paved roads.

Welcome back to the PT, Marine. It's not all bad.
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Old 07-17-16, 12:43 PM
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dont need to worry about off road. I live 1.5 miles of gravel....but plan to take the bike somewhere and just ride roads. Traffic isnt bad out here...and some roads have shoulders.
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Old 07-17-16, 12:47 PM
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I agree with the responses suggesting you go with one of the more modern bikes with brifters and more modern conveniences. In your price range you can get a lot of bang for the buck there, and get a great daily rider. Then if you find you're really riding a fair amount, do what I'm doing and explore getting a nice vintage steel frame bike for some variety.

Regarding fit, my sense is that with bikes from the 70s and 80s you can go a bit bigger, and for more modern bikes you need to go a bit smaller. So if a classic fit calculator says you belong on a 56 cm frame, you might feel swallowed up on a modern 58 (I'm 6' and I wouldn't want to go a cm larger than my 58 cm CAAD10), but you might be comfortable on a modern 54. Likewise, you may find in a vintage bike a 58 is great, and a 54 smallish. Of course your mileage will vary, and you should have a low threshold for test riding these bikes. You'll probably know when you're sitting on the right one.

In my area I see a lot of '90s Cannondales that look like good deals, but we don't have a lot of variety in our CL. And don't underestimate the look of the bike. I love the way my bike looks, and that makes it easier for me to keep it clean and oiled and regularly ridden.
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Old 07-17-16, 12:53 PM
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You're on the right track. Go try them out. You'll soon know which is best for you. Fit is the most important thing to check.
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Old 07-17-16, 12:59 PM
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If you're riding some on gravel, I'd keep an eye out for a road bike that takes long reach brakes as that will let you run a 28c tire. A little larger tire will help the rims hold up and will be more comfortable on rough roads. Bikes with short reach brakes usu. top out at 25c (some do at 23c). One of the biggest variables on ride comfort is tire volume.

http://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vi...g-bicycle.html
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Old 07-17-16, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by rgver View Post
I'm 5'10 and ride 56, 58cm, 54s seem very small for me
I'm 5'10" and ride a 54, no way can I ride anything larger than a 55. Height is meaningless without more detailed measurements.
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Old 07-17-16, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by mcompton1973 View Post
92 Schwinn Paramount Series 3 - $300 (in 92 was this still the top of the line?)
For a Schwinn, the Paramount was probably their top offering. It wouldn't necessarily have been top of the line of all bikes available of the era, as other manufacturers were already moving towards carbon fiber and aluminum frames.

As far as being top of the line today... perhaps that is the rub. Many of the premium features such as alloy cranks, some kind of butted chromoly tubing, and etc, have been pretty much adopted by all but the lowest quality bikes today.

And in many senses, the classic features have been superseded. For example replacing stock aluminum cranks with hollowtech cranks or even carbon fiber cranks. Both brake levers and callipers are better. And the shift from downtube shifters to brifters has been nice (although not entirely necessary).

Anyway, I'm a little divided. I believe there is a lot of value in the old C&V bikes. But, at the same time, there are advantages of going modern for a good "starter bike".
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Old 07-17-16, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by DMC707 View Post

The Guerciotti could be the sleeper of the bunch, but the frame decals look odd-- but with a mish-mash of Shimano parts from different eras, looks like your largely paying for the frame so knowing a couple more details about it would be good
I see nothing but a decal that would lead me to believe that is a Gooch.
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Old 07-17-16, 04:51 PM
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OK.
I think I am going to try for the KHS first. I should be able to test ride it tomorrow or Tuesday

I think the Paramount next.
Then the Giant or the Tempo maybe.

Thanks for the advice and I will let you guys know what happens.
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Old 07-17-16, 05:40 PM
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unless there are circus-freak anatomical issues, how someone 5'9'' could consider a 58 cm horizontal top tube frame is bafflling..
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Old 07-17-16, 05:54 PM
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You have lots of choices already, but if you can find one in your area, try one of these: 1984 Centurion ProTour 15
or any good 80's touring bike. Their frame has a comfortable ride. It is up to hauling your "beer muscle" around and even has a granny gear triple to get you and that muscle up the hills. They usually have bar end shifters or can be cheaply converted and there are quite a few tourers out there. Once you are back in shape, you can shop for a performance bike. Don
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Old 07-18-16, 12:10 AM
  #23  
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You're crazy if you don't jump in your car and go see the Schwinn 564 for $120 that oddjob2 pointed out.

That's a better bike at a steal of a price than most of all of the other bikes that have been pointed out.

The Paramount OS Series 3 was close to the bottom Paramount that model year. It was made in either Taiwan or Japan, NOT in the USA. Still, it would be a good rider, if you can fit it, but it's a 58, and the odds are that it will be a little tall on you.

I rode a 23" Schwinn Varsity when I was 14, but I would not dream of riding a bike that size any more. I'm more comfortable on a 54 or 56cm.

By the way, the Schwinn 564 in the photo is not a 54cm/21", it's a 56cm (at least).
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Old 07-18-16, 05:01 AM
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My advice is always to find some that are close to you, that would seem to fit...and then go ride them...absolutely NO substitute for that...
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Old 07-23-16, 01:23 AM
  #25  
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I got the KHS.
I looked at the Schwinn 564 and it needed a lot more maintenance than I wanted to do. The KHS seems like the best value for me...and fits great.

Got my ride in....and got a flat. Replaced the tube and the original tire. Back will need replaced as well...but for now it's gotta wait.
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