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First bike craigslist foraging! Fugi Roubaix 3.0 or Centurions?

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First bike craigslist foraging! Fugi Roubaix 3.0 or Centurions?

Old 06-21-15, 11:37 PM
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m3thod
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First bike craigslist foraging! Fugi Roubaix 3.0 or Centurions?

I am looking to get my first road bike and begin commuting to work/school. I've narrowed what i believe to be my size down to 60 or 61 cm from visiting a local bike shop and online calculators. I've also been educating myself as much as possible on components and their differences, but I am unsure if the bikes I'm looking at are fairly priced.

The couple bikes I am looking at are a Fugi Roubaix 3.0 that looks like a steal considering the accessories that i do not own.
FUJI Roubaix 3.0 Road Bike w/ Accessories

I am also looking at two Centurions... One unknown model (looks to me like a early 80's model?) that would be a bit of a fixer.
61cm Centurion road bike

Last the Centurion Accorde RS
Road Bike 60 c.m (Centurion - Accord - R.s

I am student and don't have much money to throw around, but i do have spirit and can do some fixing. I just don't want to get ripped off. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 06-22-15, 05:39 AM
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The 61cm Centurion is a beautiful bike. Plus it comes with a rack so you know it has the brazeons for a rack. Also plenty of clearance for fenders. And it's steel. And it's $150 less than the other bikes.
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Old 06-22-15, 07:28 AM
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I would keep looking. For a commuter bike you might want the ability to add fenders and none of those bikes will fit fenders. Bigger tires would be nice too!
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Old 06-22-15, 07:29 AM
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What exactly are you looking for? The Fuji is priced okay, I would try to bargain down of course, but the shifter is "wonky," whatever that means. It would be a great bike for a later rebuild with some newer componentry.

The cheaper Centurion is much more budget friendly but is a bit rusty in places and will need some tlc right off the bat. The more expensive Centurion looks nice but that's a pretty penny for an older bike.

Don't get sucked into the whole steel vs. aluminum argument yet. I've ridden older steel, older aluminum, newer aluminum...it can all be dialed in to have a very similar ride quality by changing tires, handlebars, handlebar wrap, saddle, seat post, etc.

You live in a sub-Mediterranean climate, so I wouldn't worry about fenders necessarily unless you are already committed 100% to riding every single day no matter what. You might have a total of 2 or 3 weeks throughout the entire year where the roads are wet.

Do you want newer, older, cheaper? I started with older/cheaper and upgraded as I went along until I started to get the bug to ride something different. Now I ride something very different from what I started with and there are bike frames and parts all over my garage.
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Old 06-22-15, 08:25 AM
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Just based on looks, id think the Fuji would be first to be stolen. Not sure how secure parking will be.

The Accord RS looks larger than 60cm, just based on the head tube, but that may be the photo angle. It has Tange Infinity tubing and looks nice overall. Cool bike.
The Accord would by my choice, of the 3- best looking, good frame, and itll have the best shifting of the 3. The tape color isn't for me, but it at least matches the tire sidewalls...
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Old 06-22-15, 12:29 PM
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Hi there, I'm in San Diego too. I live in Poway and commute to RB.

I think that $85 Centurion is a steal. Yeah, there's a little rust, but it seems cosmetic to me. As noted it already has a rack. It's hard to tell from the photos, but the tires look like they might not need to be replaced. And if you're interested in learning mechanics, you can find some things to work on, but probably you could ride it day 1. (I'd get started on getting rid of those 'suicide brakes').

The Fuji looks to me like a good deal as well, a lot more modern bike, and a lot of good accessories. Don't know if the shoes would fit you (if you really need a 60cm or 61cm, and given that bike shops usually fit people for small bikes because weight is less, then you're probably 6'2"-6'4", and I bet you have larger feet than US10), but you'd be able to use the pedals with regular shoes. That seat would definitely be an acquired taste, and maybe 58cm is not quite big enough, but you'd have to ride it to check your own fit.

Either way, I highly highly recommend my favorite LBS, Ye Olde Bicycle Shoppe on University Ave. They deal in sales/service for used/vintage bikes. Unlike most bike shops around I have never felt ripped off by sales or service. They will never look down on an old bike and try to upsell you to a new bike. I'm sure they could fix up that Fuji's shifter. If you do need tires, they have piles of used tires with life still in them, usually for just $5 each, I've gotten thousands of miles out of used tires from them. They have parts bins that you can search through and get little bits and bobs, if you find what you need there it will be almost free.

Where would you be commuting to/from? Will you be on roads or bike paths? Will there be big hills?
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Old 06-23-15, 03:33 AM
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So after reading your guys' comments and doing some thinking, I'm not gonna go for the Fugi.
1) If fit really is everything, i'm probably better off with a 60cm (I'm 6' 1' with 35" inseam).
2) It looks like a great score for a thief (not that i'm not going to use a quality bike lock).
3) I'm leaning towards old/cheap.

Unfortunately that cheaper centurion was an older ad by the time i posted so it might be gone. If it is reposted I will at the very least go look at it. It looked like a good entry level bike with a bike rack as an added bonus, and would leave room in the budget for some tlc. As for what kind of environment I'll be riding in, it will be all road with maybe 600 ft of elevation gain/loss over a 30 minute ride. I'm assuming that's pretty ideal, and most of the elevation gain is concentrated in 1 hill.

The Ye Olde Bicycle Shoppe sounds awesome, thank you for the info. I will definitely have to check that out. The used parts sound like a score as well, and help put my mind at ease with getting a bike that needs some care.

For the time being i will keep looking for another deal like the cheaper centurion. i'm feeling inspired Though what would be an acceptable price for the centurion accorde r.s. if I were to go see it? Or is it reasonably enough priced? Thanks all of you for the info, it's extremely helpful.
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Old 06-23-15, 08:42 AM
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New tires on the Accord is a plus since thatll set you back $40+ for a pair, depending on quality.
The ad says its tuned and ready to roll. Ignore that- its meaningless unless the seller had it done at a bike shop or can competently explain what was done and how he did it.

Often times a bike will be ‘tuned’ but the cables and housing will be original. Sure, the components have been adjusted(tuned), but using old cables shows they are cheaping out and in my view it’s a huge negative considering good cables(stainless) and housing(lined) will cost $10 at most from a local bike co-op. New cables and housing will make the shifting and braking much easier and precise.
If the bike’s cables have actually been replaced recently, then hopefully that translates to the rest of the bike being in good shape. If the cables are old but do work, im sure you can get by. If they are old and shifting sticks and is tough, then itll be probably $50 to have it fixed at a bike shop. That should be taken into account.

Check the wheels. Do they spin true or are they wobbly? Truing wheels will be $10 each or so at a bike shop.

Ask if the bike’s hubs(the wheels), bottom bracket(where the crank goes thru the frame), and headset(between the handlebars and fork) were cleaned and packed with grease recently. If not, that will be another cost either immediately or down the line, depending on how the moving parts feel.
I personally don’t trust sellers to properly do these things even when they advertise it, but when they don’t even advertise it, I assume it hasn’t been done at all. To do those things will be $80ish at a bike shop. They may not be needed but just be aware of the potential cost.




As for value- if the bike has dust on the frame and/or components, assume no actual maintenance has been done. I would think that bike in refurbished condition would be worth $200 - $250 if it’s going to be used a lot. So perhaps a good approach is to start at the total amount you want to pay and start deducting any immediate costs if there are any.




Good luck and have fun!
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Old 06-23-15, 09:03 AM
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6'1", 35" inseam, you're long in the leg, I think you definitely want to lean towards the larger sizes. I'm 6' with a 32" inseam, and I ride a 60cm Surly CrossCheck.

There's nothing wrong with old/cheap, especially as you're a student and willing to put in some elbow grease, and having a shop that handles "well-loved" bikes to help you out.

Bummer that the cheap centurion ad expired, I wish I still had the page open and could fire off an email for you! For the RS, maybe I'm biased by the other ad being so cheap, but I'd look to pay maybe $150 for that bike, which in CL-land means coming in with an even lower offer, hoping for him to counter up to around $150. This bike does look in good shape, I like the brake levers better, it's got nice new tires and matching bar tape, the frame and decals look very good, and most importantly for those hills, the spread of gears front and back looks reasonably large, not racing-tight. Saying all those good things, maybe $200. But you have to be OK with the downtube shifters, many old-timers swear by them for bulletproof reliability, but most people dislike having to let go of the bars to shift. The other centurion at least had stem-mounted shifters.
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Old 06-23-15, 09:09 AM
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Check this out, looks like the same model offered only for $119, although the condition is not as good. You may not want to drive up to OC, but maybe you could use this as bargaining leverage? I'm finding lots of good options in LA actually, like this and this. What's your timeline? Are you ok to wait and shop CL through the summer until school starts again?
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Old 06-24-15, 03:10 PM
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So I took your advice RubeRad and went to see a bit bigger bike https://sandiego.craigslist.org/csd/bik/5043669985.html
It definitely was a big bike but at a seemingly good price. Standing with the bikes frame between my legs, i just barely had enough clearance. Riding it I my leg was almost fully extended at the very lowest point in a revolution. This was with the seat at the lowest point. I scoured it for a frame size but couldn't come up with one. It was all original 1979 with the exception of the tires which were new. It shifted to all gears, but not very cleanly, it seemed like it just needed adjustment, or maybe the lines replaced? The hubs and and crank probably haven't been greased in a while but does that matter if it only received light use? I have a parts washer so i could clean and lube the chain myself.

With regards to the Centurion Accorde RS I plan on going to see it today. I think having looked at the Nishiki, as well as the what i'm looking at price wise if it isn't really tuned and ready to go, i'll have a good idea of what it will be worth. I also just recently saw this ad which could help me bargin. https://sandiego.craigslist.org/nsd/bik/5090642332.html

As a side note, I went and looked at my dads old bike from his cycling heyday and it turned out to be a Centurion Ironman Dave Scott. That was cool to see. He also mentioned(from his riding experience in the late 80's early 90's) that Kevlar tires were a necessity? Is this relevant today or have tires changed?
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Old 06-24-15, 03:37 PM
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That's a pretty big bike! (For frame size, measure from the center of the crank, up the seat tube, to the midline of the top tube) If the seat is all the way down for you to ride, the fit is not ideal, but if you feel ok, it is ok. And the point of craigslist is you are buying a used bike for market value, if you decide to sell it, you should be able to sell it in the same market for the same value. So less risk than buying a new bike (typically sells on CL at half the price).

Quite probably a bike like that could use a tune-up. New housing/cables are cheap, and replacing them yourself is an excellent way to give yourself a tutorial on how brakes and shifters work.

That other centurion ad, it looks pretty good, except the tires have dry-rot, they would definitely need to be replaced.

Can you borrow your dad's Centurion?

Kevlar tires: yes, bikes get flats. You will need to become proficient at fixing flats, or at least swapping tubes, on the road. There are various strategies to protect against this; you can buy tires with kevlar belts or other kinds of flat-resistant liners, you can buy separate liners that you can swap into whatever tires you want (I've used Mr Tuffy with good success, there are comparable brands); you can fill your tube with sealants (works for some people, most seem to think it is an ineffective mess); with mountain tires you can run tubeless with sealant at lower pressures (higher pressure = more flattable; think of poking a big, taut balloon with a pin vs a small, flabby balloon)

A lot of it depends on your ability to avoid glass/thorns you might be able to see, and how bad your typical routes are for puncture hazards. There's also pinch flats from slamming into curbs/potholes and the rim itself punctures the tube, you should be able to avoid those with proper inflation and mindful riding.

I would say, whatever bike you get, if the tires it has are rideable, ride them. But also have flat repair stuff with you (tire levers, patch kit and/or spare tube, pump), and practice at home (intentional puncture with a sewing needle? take it apart, patch it, put it back together) so you'll be capable when it happens to you out on the road. Then as you're riding, if you find that you're getting more flats than you want to deal with, search BF for the many many commuting/flat-resistant tire threads and figure out what to buy.
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