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Tricks for Finding Cheap Bike Parts?

Old 06-05-20, 04:22 PM
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chobbs77
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Tricks for Finding Cheap Bike Parts?

Are there any tips you guys have for finding cheap bike parts. Iím looking for used Shimano brifters but canít find many good options under $100. There are a few lower end options around $50. Do I have to bite the bullet and pay the price, or can I find cheaper quality?
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Old 06-05-20, 04:30 PM
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Donor bike.
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Old 06-05-20, 04:39 PM
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I’m always looking and when a steal does appear, I may buy it even if I don’t have an immediate need. Requires a lot of patience and cash to fund the parts bin. If I were to factor the cost of my money sitting on a shelf, it’s probably an awful approach.
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Old 06-05-20, 04:53 PM
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Depends on if you're trying to find Dura-Ace or Ultegra for that price or something down range. Ebay prices are stupid high right now. If you have a local bike shop that sells used parts, that's a good place. Donor bikes work well. We don't know how many speeds you're looking for, nor general age. That can help or hurt the cause.
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Old 06-05-20, 05:00 PM
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diligence + luck + improvise + repeat

1. diligence
forum. ebay. vintage-friendly shops like Boulder Bicycle always have some interesting deals and continuous discovery of NOS stuffs outta no where. subscribe. Ben's Cycle is awesome, too. when search ebay, don't search with too much detailed info and exact word. think how a seller whose no idea on the value of the part would post a thing. ie.) shimano 600 ex tricolor crankset (i'm just making up) vs 'shimano crank'. you'd be surprised at the results. also do an intentional typo search like Campanolo. simano. gems are usually there with less competition hence lower tag. of course, you've gotta be on top of your game on what you are exactly looking for, and eyes and knowledges on the stuffs.

2. luck
can't explain this. some stuffs are meant to be yours.

3. improvise
unless you are doing a specific timeframe sales-catalogue level restoration (which is fun), improvise is fun too. prices on even a same item do fluctuate with no reason. if you realize what you hunt for is now on unusually high-side, either no rush or find an alternative still works, then see you can replace it later. found myself that, waiting for an item could well go like 3 yearsĪ. part of fun, too. i learnt a lot from improvise.

4. repeat
'til you find what you want at good price. trust me, it's still a way healthier addiction than watches or guns. i do another unhealthy things called golf clubs. you get the story.

by no means, lecturing you or anything. just sharing my experience here.

Last edited by orangeology; 06-05-20 at 07:43 PM.
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Old 06-05-20, 05:05 PM
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https://www.alibaba.com/Cycling_p127...2ce267afUxn5lz
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Old 06-05-20, 05:13 PM
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Visit, don't call your LBS. Explain what you want + what you can pay. Leave a number/email if not there now.

Bike co-op. Search bins. Ask the staff.

Post here on the ISO thread.

Place ad on CL.

Discovered I need a BB axle (spindle) for a double as one I had was for a triple. Word of mouth only , asked people some people who bike and found man who has a NOS sealed cartridge in box for $20 Canadian. Cheaper and faster than online.

All you need is one person who has it and can't use it (or who takes pity on you).
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Old 06-05-20, 05:22 PM
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You might try looking for used women's bikes. They often sit unsold longer and folks end up just wanting to move them. I've seen screaming deals locally for 105/Ultegra equipped women's bikes, but wasn't in a place to make the purchase.
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Old 06-05-20, 06:18 PM
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Bike co-op / community bike shop is the best way to find these. Do you have any near you?
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Old 06-05-20, 06:40 PM
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Thanks Iíll try all of these. Iím eyeing a shimano ultegra 600 groupset right now. Anything wrong with mixing up the models.
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Old 06-05-20, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by BFisher View Post
You might try looking for used women's bikes. They often sit unsold longer and folks end up just wanting to move them. I've seen screaming deals locally for 105/Ultegra equipped women's bikes, but wasn't in a place to make the purchase.
Damn, that's a really good idea.
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Old 06-05-20, 08:14 PM
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Live in a city with a lot of bike co-ops or bike shops that sell used parts.
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Old 06-05-20, 08:17 PM
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I have two co ops in my city. I have never been to one, what should I expect?
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Old 06-05-20, 08:36 PM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
I have two co ops in my city. I have never been to one, what should I expect?
The answer is, go visit them.

Another thing to do: Post your location - you'll might be shocked at how many bike forum members live near you and may have exactly what you're looking for at much less than you'd pay on eBay.
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Old 06-05-20, 09:50 PM
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Say where you are, as Gugie says. Visit your coop because no two are alike. Understand that they never know what will walk in the door, or when, so they might not have what you need this week, but it could magically appear next week. Politely ask if they have a WTB list. Be "that nice human who was looking for the XYZ" so that they'll go to the trouble of finding your number if it turns up.

Say what you need, specifically, so that if a bike forums member has it, they'll know they have it.

Good luck and ride safe.

Al
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Old 06-05-20, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
I have two co ops in my city. I have never been to one, what should I expect?
A bin of the worst pedals known to man.

And good stuff, too.
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Old 06-08-20, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by orangeology View Post
diligence + luck + improvise + repeat

1. diligence
forum. ebay. vintage-friendly shops like Boulder Bicycle always have some interesting deals and continuous discovery of NOS stuffs outta no where. subscribe. Ben's Cycle is awesome, too. when search ebay, don't search with too much detailed info and exact word. think how a seller whose no idea on the value of the part would post a thing. ie.) shimano 600 ex tricolor crankset (i'm just making up) vs 'shimano crank'. you'd be surprised at the results. also do an intentional typo search like Campanolo. simano. gems are usually there with less competition hence lower tag. of course, you've gotta be on top of your game on what you are exactly looking for, and eyes and knowledges on the stuffs.

2. luck
can't explain this. some stuffs are meant to be yours.

3. improvise
unless you are doing a specific timeframe sales-catalogue level restoration (which is fun), improvise is fun too. prices on even a same item do fluctuate with no reason. if you realize what you hunt for is now on unusually high-side, either no rush or find an alternative still works, then see you can replace it later. found myself that, waiting for an item could well go like 3 yearsĪ. part of fun, too. i learnt a lot from improvise.

4. repeat
'til you find what you want at good price. trust me, it's still a way healthier addiction than watches or guns. i do another unhealthy things called golf clubs. you get the story.

by no means, lecturing you or anything. just sharing my experience here.
This. If you kinda make it your hobby to poke around the classifieds, you'll be the first to respond to postings on places like Nextdoor or FB Marketplace. Just in the past two weeks, I've seen a pristine '87 Sirrus go for $35, and a virtually unridden Univega Gran Turismo and a very good Centurion Le Mans (Tange 2) go for free. Today, I'm picking up some cheap parts because I happened to check Nextdoor a little after midnight the other night, just before going to bed.
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Old 06-08-20, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
I have two co ops in my city. I have never been to one, what should I expect?
Boxes of 6-7-speed freewheels.

Co-ops are a godsend if you have a pre-freehub road bike and want to change up the gearing occasionally.

Last edited by sheddle; 06-08-20 at 12:17 PM.
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Old 06-08-20, 12:45 PM
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market is what the market is. I remember years ago being surprised at how expensive and hard to find 9 speed ultegra stuff was.

a lot depends on what speed brifters you are looking for......used can be hit and miss as to working (that info would help also)
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Old 06-08-20, 12:51 PM
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Get a paid subscription to bikeforums so you can visit the for-sale sections. We are always making deals there.
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Old 06-08-20, 03:32 PM
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The best deals I have ever gotten came at times I least expected it. I was buying a new car for my daughter when she was going to college. The salesman was a really down to earth guy and we ended up meeting on the weekend for coffee. I rode one of my old racers . He saw my bike and asked if I like older steel racing bikes and of course I said "yea". He told me about walking in to a bike shop in the eighties and buying the top bike they had a Trek 600 in blue. A week after he bought it he was in a terrible car crash so he never rode the bike. He told me I could have it! I have had bikes given to me or rare Campy stuff just by sharing my passion with others. How about a NOS set of Schwinn Paramount P13 take off wheels (tubulars) laced to Campagnolo High Flange hubs and the prettiest flat skewers I have ever seen, that had never been used , still had the silk tires on them that were not cracked and held air for weeks( early seventies ) on eBay. Nobody bid , I got the set with a Regina Oro freewheel for $46.00. The list goes on , but just keep your eyes open and if you see something , ask.
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Old 06-08-20, 03:51 PM
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I spent many Saturday am's doing the garage sale hunt. They should be coming back if and where allowed. Buying inexpensive bikes you don't want or need gives you a deep inventory, IF you want 7 speed or earlier.
And occasionally you will land a great white whale.
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Old 06-08-20, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
Are there any tips you guys have for finding cheap bike parts. Iím looking for used Shimano brifters but canít find many good options under $100. There are a few lower end options around $50. Do I have to bite the bullet and pay the price, or can I find cheaper quality?
Meet many people. Be nice to them.

Other cyclists into other types of bikes is great - the guy with the Schwinns, the vintage MTB guy, the messenger gal; share spillover treasures.

People into scrap metals run into lots of bikes, building supers, odd jobs like that.

Be nice to people and they will be nice to you.
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Old 06-08-20, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
Are there any tips you guys have for finding cheap bike parts. Iím looking for used Shimano brifters but canít find many good options under $100. There are a few lower end options around $50. Do I have to bite the bullet and pay the price, or can I find cheaper quality?
1 parts on a bike are as a package cheaper than a single part
2 bikes on the local market are more affordable than bikes available globally
3 don't look for a specific part, if you do they'll magically vanish from the market
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Old 06-08-20, 05:27 PM
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Swap meets
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