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lponder82 10-01-17 10:24 AM

Help please!
Is there anyone on here thats very knowledgeable and willing to chat/email with me regarding some bikes i have questions on. I am a newb trying to find a good used bike to start riding with. I have found a few on craigslist that look nice but other than that...I have no idea the differences or what im looking for really. I would like to purchase one today. If anyone is willing to help me out, id really appreciate it!

Maelochs 10-01-17 11:14 AM

Good thing you didn't wait until the last minute.

Forget today. it's Sunday, anyone not stuck doing yard work or family duties is out riding.

Your best bet is to post links (I know you need ten posts for links/pics, but a little creativity: htt___ps:// for example ....)

People will want to know where you are (so they can scan CL for you) and will need to know how old you are (approximately,) what you plan to do with the bike (different advice by far for a 16-year-old who wants to ride to school and a 36-year-old who wants to do fast club rides, or centuries, and 66-year-old who wants to get back to the sport after retirement.) How far do you plan to ride? How long. How m,uch gear will you want to carry, idf any? Would you be using the bike for sport or utility? Do you plan to race one day, do you want to go really fast, do you plan to ride paved,., unpaved, or mixed?

Since it seems you have no bicycling experience at all, I would recommend one of two courses: find a friend who knows a little (so you don't buy as clapped-out bike which can not be repaired for less than five times the sale price) or spend a few hours on YouTube learning about the basics of bicycles.

If you are Really clueless about bikes (which is fine of course) then you need to decide if you even want to risk buying something used ... because you would have No way of telling if it was okay or garbage. There is only so much an Craigslist listing can tell you.

Another option would be to visit a local bike shop, tell them your budget is smaller than it actually is, and ask if they have anything used. While you are there, ask if they could check over a bike if you bought it elsewhere .... in which case, be prepared to pay $50 or more for labor, plus any parts.

Also .... if your budget is pretty small you will probably need tires, tubes, and cables ... and would need to know how to replace all that. Old, cheap bikes often have rotted ties, punctured tubes (great practice as you will want to know how to patch tubes anyway) and rusted cables.

Another option is to go to local thrift stores and buy any bike which rolls and seems to fit. You might not get the bike you want,. but you will at least see if you like riding. That is Always an issue with brand new riders: none of us know if you will get a bike, ride it half-a-dozen times, and decide you don't really like riding, in which case we might have wasted a bunch of your money suggesting something a lot more expensive than you need.

A few tips: if you hold up the front wheel and spin it, it should spin for a long time but not shake or wobble. While you are holding the front end off the ground, shake the handlebars and forks: --they should also spin but not shake or wobble.

Put both wheels down, grab a pedal, and shake the whole thing side to side. Spin each pedal and make sure they spin freely.

If the bike has a freewheel or freehub, spin the pedals backwards (if it doesn't you won't be able to, because the wheel will try to spin.) The pedals should spin easily but not shake.

Then lift the rear wheels and spin it backwards.

Basically, any part that goes around should never go side-to-side.

Then squeeze each brake and see how hard it is, and whether the lever pops back. Then squeeze each brake and try to roll the bike (you might well need new brake shoes too, but still, if the brakes are grabbing the wheel you should feel it.)

Then if the bike has gears, hold up the rear end, spin the pedals, and shift through the gears (the seller can help hold up the bike.)

(By the way, when you are doing all this, even if you have no idea what you are doing you should say stuff like, "Well, that will need some work," " Some wear there but that's to be expected on such an old, worn-out bike," " and "Okay, well, replacement parts come off the sale price." This will give you an edge in bargaining later. :D )

After all this, you should know if the bike is safe to ride around the parking lot/driveway, whatever ... so do that. (it is permissible to fake a crash if you are planning insurance fraud, but I'd not recommend it ... directly. :D)

If it makes any kind of rhythmic noise when you ride it, something is rubbing. If you can't fix it, don't buy it. If it makes any kind of grinding noise, it is self-destructing. Don't buy it. Otherwise, see what you think.

Then comes the Big Moment: you have to decide if you want to ride thins bike for the next several months at least. Remember that if you buy a bike you might be all excited ... but when you get up the next day and look at it before your next ride, you will see an old, broke-down old bike. When you see the banged-up, rusty old bike you just bought, will you still want to ride it? When the thrill of the hunt and the kill have passed ... what will you do with the carcass?

Try to ask yourself that Before you buy the bike. Every bike looks great (unless it is Total crap) when you see it and want A bike and can have this one. it is not until you are stuck with This One that you can see it clearly. Compensate mentally.

Then all that is left is handing over the cash ... and figuring out, "How the heck am I going to get this thing Home now?" :D

So .... any questions?

seedsbelize 10-01-17 11:14 AM

It would be easy to just discuss it here.

lponder82 10-01-17 01:47 PM

Originally Posted by Maelochs (Post 19899717)
Good thing you didn't wait until the last minute.

So .... any questions?

First of all, thank you so much Maelochs for your response and all of the information. I really appreciate it. A little info about me. I am a 35 year old female and I am overweight. I have been looking into bikes off and on for the past few years because I was interested in riding just for relaxation...sort of like a therapy lol. That is still the reason, but I also want it for exercise. My plan is to start riding just around the neighborhood and maybe back and for to the store. Nothing major. But eventually I would like to work my way up to longer rides and doing trails and things. Im looking to do a lifestyle change. I will post a few links here and maybe you can give me your opinion off bat before I go look at them.
Also I live in Denver, Colorado. So if you would help me w/ CL that would be awesome. I would like to stay in the $200 and under range other than the new bike I listed.
ht___tps:// .html


h___ttp:// (this one i currently have on a layaway)

blue192 10-01-17 01:54 PM

I am not riding or doing yard work today. In fact I am currently in the crawlspace hiding from Mrs. Blue192 as she wants me to do yard work but I do not want to. I been married so long I have to teach her a lesson sometimes.... I love my lappy and headphones.

Maelochs 10-01-17 02:30 PM

Hard to say much based on CL listings ... both the used bikes Look alright. In a tiny pictures form a couple thousand miles away.

I would probably suggest going with the new Verve simply because if you had any problems you could take it back to the shop ... and the chances of having problems would be a lot lower with a new rather than a used bike.

With a used bike, you just never know ... and if you have never bought a bike before ... when a cable snaps or something, and you have no idea what just went wrong but can't ride your bike ... it can ruin your whole day.

Also ... the Most important thing about any working bike is, Does It Fit? The wrong sized bike is like wrong sized shoes ... nothing but pain no matter how good they look. Hopefully the shop could fit you to the right bike ... you have to make your own judgments there.

If they only have one size and they are telling you it fits but you aren't sure, go to another shop. if they have a couple and they steer you towards one, odds are better it is the right one.

It never hurts to check out another shop or two just in case. For people who don't do maintenance and repair, the shop can be important, and you have to be completely comfortable with them ... if they won't take time for you, treat you poorly because you don't race or ride a mounrtain bike or whatever ... go to a better shop.

All the major dealers make a hybrid comparable to the Verve. If the shop selling the Verve isn't right, go elsewhere. if you think they are decent folk, it seems like a decent choice.

Another plus about buying new at a shop for a first-time buyer ... if you need a different stem or seat post or handlebars to get the right fit, normally a shop will make the swap for free. You buy used, you might have to guess if it fits, and if it needs a longer seat post of a shorter stem ... good luck.

Probably you could save a few bucks buying used ... but it is a gamble and for someone who (I assume) doesn't want to do a lot of repair/replacement but mostly just wants to ride her bike .... the headaches would Way outweigh the $50 or whatever you saved.

I see the Verve has Really fat tires compared to teh Diamondback ... which means you will accelerate a little more slowly but ride with much greater comfort over a wider variety of surfaces with the Verve.

(By the way, I see someone complained that the Verve’s bottle mount, apparently right near the stem, is a problem. Would it be for you?)

I assume you are looking at the 16-inch Verve? The Diamondback at 15 ought to be close in size. If you are looking at the tiny Verve or the large the DB won’t fit.

The Trek is a nice-looking bike, same size (numerically---actually Every bike is different, numbers non-withstanding) as the DB .... also 21-speed Shimano like the Verve. It looks to be in good shape.

It has a more conventional “diamond” frame which means it might be a little harder to mount than the Verve, but might be a tad lighter. (Buyer's Guide To Comfort And Hybrid Bikes - Kirk's Bike Shop Muncie IN 765-282-6389

The Trek has a high-quality steel frame, but the frame might be heavier than the aluminum used for the DB and the Verve. For the type of rising you are contemplating frame strength will not be an issue (I take it you aren’t planning to do a lot of ten-foot jumps?)

The Trek is half the price of the Verve and is Probably an equivalent value ... Usually people don’t abuse their hybrid bikes. A lot of them (like the DB) get bought by someone who thought cycling sounded fun, but ended up never riding.

I’d have to give the bike a sound inspection, but if it were my money I would buy the Trek based on the ads (The DB ad doesn’t give much info.)

But ... if anything went wrong with the Trek, I could fix it, possibly with parts I already have at home. If the wheels weren’t true, I could true them on my truing stand. I have cables, chains, all the necessary tools, and I know (mostly) how to use them.)

Probably any of those bikes would do for five years with nothing more than a little cable adjustment and maybe a patched tube.

You have to decide if the security of a brand new bike and a bike shop is worth the extra cost up front.

rumrunn6 10-02-17 09:27 AM

not to suggest taking advantage of your local bike shops, but they are are probably your best resource for personalized information. I think it would be OK to go into a cpl near you & ask for advice & to look at some bikes. it would benefit them, even if you don't buy a bike from them, because they may have won a customer for other stuff like accessories & clothing & maintenance or repairs. you might even be allowed to test ride some bikes. the bike shop in my town also sells used bikes. but who knows, you might wind up buying a new bike. regardless, don't rule them out

lponder82 10-06-17 06:30 PM

Thank you all, especially you @Maelochs .... i decided on the trek 720. Went and picked it up today. I plan on taking it to a shop tomorrow to get looked at.

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