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Keeping an old bike because nobody else wants it

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Keeping an old bike because nobody else wants it

Old 09-10-19, 09:49 AM
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Squeeze
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Keeping an old bike because nobody else wants it

I once worked with some older guys (I guess I'm the age now that they were then...) who once joked about something I haven't forgotten, perhaps because my grandmother had a Rambler (automobile) when I was young.

They said that back in their day, if you bought a Rambler, you would have it forever because nobody else wanted it.

I just deleted a month-old craigslist ad for an at-least-average lugged steel road bike from the mid-'90s because nobody was interested. I have been using craigslist in a large metro area for many years and can tell when the market has spoken.

I guess a dented top tube and scraped-up paint from being a commuter bike before I got it and then again for a couple years in my possession doesn't exactly inspire a mad rush of buyers. I know from checking craigslist often that I myself could have gotten better for my $100 asking price, but I was hoping someone would want it so I could make room for something with fatter tires. I'm lucky enough to have a gravel trail running right behind my house that goes everywhere I want to ride for business and/or pleasure, including to mountain bike trails, so I found the road bike limiting rather than freeing - and especially when I got a job outside of reasonable bicycle commuting range a couple years ago.

No pictures, because I am not a paying member and therefore can't post For Sale ads, and anyway, I've decided to keep it for now. Maybe I'll even get some inexpensive bar tape in the color I've always thought it needed.

Yes, I know I could donate it to a co-op. I've done that twice before but I thought I'd try to get a hundred bucks for this one. Surely someone will pay that for a cool steel road bike with integrated shifters, right? Maybe not.

Anyone have a similar story? And, despite my lack of pictures at this time, I'd love to see your mangy old mutts that nobody else wants.
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Old 09-10-19, 09:53 AM
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This sounds more like no one wanting to pay your asking price vs not wanting the bike. Why not lower the price until it sells? You couldn't get $100, why not try $50 or even $20.
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Old 09-10-19, 09:54 AM
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You can post pics on this thread even without being a paid member.

Usually when someone starts a thread on beater bikes, a bunch of poseurs start posting pictures of their fancy Italian racing bikes. Just sayin.

Here's mine, a mid 70s Sekine SHS 272. I paid all of $90 for it which wasn't a steal but certainly a good deal. It's such a fine bike for commuting and locking up when I run errands. Plus the bike got C&V bonus points for being all original when I bought it. The original owner rode it once, crashed it, and then put it under a tarp in his workshop for 40 plus years before deciding to sell it.


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Old 09-10-19, 10:10 AM
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What's a thread without pix, right? I bought this '85 Centurion Signet for $10 a few years back even though I really didn't want it, because (a) I wanted to keep in the good graces of a scrapyard worker who used to pull bikes and set them to one side and (b) I felt sorry for it, and knew it was maybe an hour away from the crusher. I wound up replacing the hopelessly taco'ed steel rear wheel with a scavenged one I had on hand and washing the worst of the dirt off it. A little lube, a few minutes tuning things, and it turned out to be a decent enough bike. I put it up on consignment at the LBS for $50 and it didn't move for a long time, then I got it back and rode it for a little while set up as you see it. I wound up donating it to the local Salvation Army, taking some satisfaction that it had evaded being scrap metal for a little while, and maybe someone would actually be able to get from point A to point B on it for a while.



This next one is a challenge - it was crashed at some point and I straightened it up and made it rideable again. It was a good entry for the Clunker Challenge a couple of years ago, but I haven't ridden it since. Now, for liability reasons, nobody else can ride it, but there is this stupid sentimentality within me that would hate to see it summarily scrapped. Sometimes you just feel sorry for the poor neglected things. So it remains in the fleet, though perhaps conversion to single speed with really fat 700C tires for trips to Edisto Island is in its future ...

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Old 09-10-19, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by katsup
why not try $50 or even $20
I might. This is just where my head is today. I just had a couple great gravel rides this weekend and my mind is on bikes right now and I'm thinking I should make another road bike commute to work on a Friday when I can leave early (it's 22 miles each way) before the days get too short.

Originally Posted by bikemig
You can post pics on this thread even without being a paid member.

Usually when someone starts a thread on beater bikes, a bunch of poseurs start posting pictures of their fancy Italian racing bikes. Just sayin.
I know, but I didn't want this to be a thinly disguised For Sale ad.

I don't start many threads but I read a lot here. Sorry if I've re-opened a can of worms like rim brakes vs. disc or something.
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Old 09-10-19, 12:12 PM
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Yup, after buying this Quintanna Roo three times, I have decided that I will just keep the darn thing. I do not like the bike, even though it is wicked fast (for me). I just do not like the looks nor am I am fan of aluminum frame/fork sets. But the bike is unusual and, as it keeps coming back to me (there is a story as to why it keeps coming back) I have decided to keep it for street restoration and they a ride, now and again...
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Old 09-10-19, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Squeeze View Post
I once worked with some older guys (I guess I'm the age now that they were then...) who once joked about something I haven't forgotten, perhaps because my grandmother had a Rambler (automobile) when I was young.

They said that back in their day, if you bought a Rambler, you would have it forever because nobody else wanted it.

I just deleted a month-old craigslist ad for an at-least-average lugged steel road bike from the mid-'90s because nobody was interested. I have been using craigslist in a large metro area for many years and can tell when the market has spoken.

I guess a dented top tube and scraped-up paint from being a commuter bike before I got it and then again for a couple years in my possession doesn't exactly inspire a mad rush of buyers. I know from checking craigslist often that I myself could have gotten better for my $100 asking price, but I was hoping someone would want it so I could make room for something with fatter tires. I'm lucky enough to have a gravel trail running right behind my house that goes everywhere I want to ride for business and/or pleasure, including to mountain bike trails, so I found the road bike limiting rather than freeing - and especially when I got a job outside of reasonable bicycle commuting range a couple years ago.

No pictures, because I am not a paying member and therefore can't post For Sale ads, and anyway, I've decided to keep it for now. Maybe I'll even get some inexpensive bar tape in the color I've always thought it needed.

Yes, I know I could donate it to a co-op. I've done that twice before but I thought I'd try to get a hundred bucks for this one. Surely someone will pay that for a cool steel road bike with integrated shifters, right? Maybe not.

Anyone have a similar story? And, despite my lack of pictures at this time, I'd love to see your mangy old mutts that nobody else wants.
There was a silver Specialized Allez on the Denver Craigslist with a dented top tube and scratched paint a while ago that looked interesting if it had been in my size. It sounds similar to the bike you are describing.
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Old 09-10-19, 12:44 PM
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Two factors working against you at $100: the used bike market is severely depressed, and Colorado is full of used bikes. In particular, Denver seems to have a pawn shop every other corner with a half-dozen bikes out front.

I came to the same conclusion you did when this year, I couldn't sell a couple of fully refurbished Gitane road bikes (an Interclub and a 600) for $99 each. That's when I got out of the used bike market. Great for buyers, sellers not so much.
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Old 09-10-19, 01:00 PM
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i watched a youtube vid the other day of bloke comparing a beautifully maintained vintage 10 speed and a modern road bike.. he was in his 20's i'm guessing, and his wording about the elder bike made me wince. not that he wasn't very respectful of the old tech or the beauty of the paint and lug work, but c'mon grand dad.. the obvious perfection of a gazillion gears and brifter shifter carbon aero puluza that is the high end modern flat black batman movie esque bicycle that is so obviously the height of human development made me feel run over by a clanking dripping old steam powered time machine. what some of us see as quality machinery just looks like fly over country to the smart phone generation... time for a beer.

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Old 09-10-19, 01:40 PM
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Around here the market is too saturated to sell dented/bent frames. A couple years ago it took me a few weeks on craigslist to find a 60cm '92 Paramount PDG7 for $100. It's been my main ride ever since. Of course I did put another $400 into it.


I figure it's still worth $100 on craigslist.
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Old 09-10-19, 01:50 PM
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My recent experience thinning my bikes on CL leads me to believe 90% of CL buyers right now are flippers. I'm puzzled how they expect to profit by relisting on CL.
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Old 09-10-19, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
Y

Usually when someone starts a thread on beater bikes, a bunch of poseurs start posting pictures of their fancy Italian racing bikes. Just sayin.

Well I guess that would be me. Nobody would buy this kind of beat up frame at what I thought was a good price so I've turned it into a kind of gravel bike. Basically low geared road bike with as big a tire as I can squeeze in there.

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Old 09-10-19, 02:09 PM
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Yeah, the used market is pretty tough in some areas. On the plus side, that means I can buy good C&V bikes pretty reasonably here. But if I wanted to sell one I'd probably settle for well under $100, or just give it away to encourage a friend or new would-be cyclist.

I have a non-C&V early 2000s hybrid that I don't really need or ride anymore, so I'm keeping it for a local errand bike until I find a new home for it. I might offer it for $50 if I needed to make room in my apartment. On the plus side, while it's in good shape it's nothing most folks would bother stealing. So I just use a cheap cable lock when I park at the grocery store.

Mostly I'm using my early 1990s Univega for errands and casual group rides. It's heavy-ish at 30 lbs with rear rack, but fun to ride. I'd be disappointed if it were stolen so I do use a decent U-lock. But I could replace it with something comparable for well under $200. Mostly I'd miss the lightweight aluminum Nitto albatross bar it's wearing, the only fancy bit of gear on the bike.
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Old 09-10-19, 02:14 PM
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Here's one that can't quit me now. I stupidly bought this frame for $20 at a swap, thinking that I alone would have the talent and ingenuity to liberate a prized Campy 26.2 seatpost from it, then rebuild it as a beater with salvage parts and move it on.

A full year later, after trying every trick I could learn (plenty from right here too), that seatpost was still stuck fast, and fitted with a cheapo saddle the dam' thing was a fraction of an inch too tall for me. So I put beater 700s on it and spent weeks on CL before selling to a guy who it fit perfectly.

18 months later, same guys lists it for sale, and I go buy it back. Not because I'm a dumb*ss glutton for punishment (although I am that) but because I've realized that with different saddles, I can fine tune the height and maybe make it work. So he wears a Concor today and fits me like a glove and will stick around as ... my clunker challenger? it's just not worth the hassle of trying to sell him again.
.


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Old 09-10-19, 02:42 PM
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Another option is to part it out and/or donate it to your local bike co-op.
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