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Challenges buying used/new bikes

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Challenges buying used/new bikes

Old 05-05-22, 10:01 AM
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Frenzen
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Challenges buying used/new bikes

I don't know how it is in another retail stores, but Canadian Tire (one of biggest retail stores in Canada) sells bikes based on wheel sizes and I suspect most people do not buy the right size. Also whenever I am looking for a used bike on facebook, craiglist/kiji, people almost never post the frame size. Is this something everyone encounters when buying used bikes outside of a bike store? I feel like these platforms needs requirements for a bike post, used bikes would be sold quicker and no back and forth of messaging and end up not buying the bike because it is too small.

Either way, how do you guys buy your bikes?

Last edited by Frenzen; 05-05-22 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 05-05-22, 10:09 AM
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Not sure if you have a question or just passively venting. <grin>

I usually find that going to the smaller bike shops that only deal with bikes and cycling gear will get you face to face with someone that is pretty knowledgeable. They might not have the bike you want, but they sure will have a lot of information to load you up with.

The bigger the store, the more likely the people with that knowledge will be in some office, maybe not even at that store, where you'll never get to see them and benefit from their knowledge.

As for seeing people on badly sized bikes, maybe those people don't ride so much that they need a properly sized bike. For a less than 60 minute ride, I could probably ride anything and sit on a piece of 2" x 4" stud or a brick.

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Old 05-05-22, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
Not sure if you have a question or just passively venting. <grin>

I usually find that going to the smaller bike shops that only deal with bikes and cycling gear will get you face to face with someone that is pretty knowledgeable. They might not have the bike you want, but they sure will have a lot of information to load you up with.

The bigger the store, the more likely the people with that knowledge will be in some office, maybe not even at that store, where you'll never get to see them and benefit from their knowledge.
My question is do people often buy used bike through different platforms or prefer bike shops?
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Old 05-05-22, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Frenzen View Post
My question is do people often buy used bike through different platforms or prefer bike shops?
Times are changing. More and more are probably going to be buying online.

I'd be hard pressed to buy anything I couldn't try first. Though if I wanted pretty much the same bike as I already have then I might order online. But if I wanted the same bike, why am I even buying a bike?
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Old 05-05-22, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Frenzen View Post
whenever I am looking for a used bike on facebook, craiglist/kiji, people almost never post the frame size. I feel like these platforms needs requirements for a bike post, used bikes would be sold quicker and no back and forth of messaging and end up not buying the bike because it is too small.
I think imposing requirements on Craigslist would be futile. When people do post a bike's measurements, they are often wrong or incomplete.

Originally Posted by Frenzen View Post
My question is do people often buy used bike through different platforms or prefer bike shops?
Bike shops are often reluctant to sell used bikes. I'd bet most people buy through FB and CL.
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Old 05-05-22, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
I think imposing requirements on Craigslist would be futile. When people do post a bike's measurements, they are often wrong or incomplete.



Bike shops are often reluctant to sell used bikes. I'd bet most people buy through FB and CL.
In Montreal, we have 2-3 bike stores that I know sell refurbished bikes only but I see people going to Canadian Tire instead because they are unaware of other options or trust the retail store more I guess?
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Old 05-05-22, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Frenzen View Post
In Montreal, we have 2-3 bike stores that I know sell refurbished bikes only but I see people going to Canadian Tire instead because they are unaware of other options or trust the retail store more I guess?
Hard to say what motivates people. In the US, people buy brand new crap bikes at Wal-Mart instead of buying a better used bike for the same price. I guess it's easier, and they put more trust in a new bike. What can ya do? People are dumb.
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Old 05-05-22, 12:06 PM
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One time I was interested in a Peugeot bike on Facebook Marketplace. I asked the young woman selling it to measure the stand-over height for me. She measured it to the saddle. Then I replied with detailed explanations. She remeasured. This time she was thorough. She measured the bike's overall length front to back. She measured from the pedal to the top of the saddle. She measured the distance between the seat and the handlebars. She measured everything except what I asked her to measure. I wrote back and tried to explain in the simplest terms I know how. She blocked me. I guess she figured I was some kind of creep.
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Old 05-05-22, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Frenzen View Post
My question is do people often buy used bike through different platforms or prefer bike shops?
I have never purchased a used bike through a different platform than the bike shop. I have bought used frames off of ebay, craigslist, and this forum.
A couple local shops sell some used bikes, but I really havent thought to look there before. Almost for sure nothing in my size and they will be full bikes instead of frames or partial builds and I am not interested in that.
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Old 05-05-22, 12:29 PM
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The cheap retailer bike vs LBS bike has been discussed ad nauseam.

I think the used vs new requires the buyer to actually have some knowledge of what he/she is buying.

A shop selling an older bike might rattle off components such as 105 or XT that a typical person has no clue is so much better, even though it is 20 years older, than a new non-Walmart discount store bike with new Tourney and a freewheel.

And how does someone explain cassette vs freewheel to a person who has no concept.

John
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Old 05-05-22, 10:01 PM
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Canada tire is not a bike shop so of course they are just selling a wheel size the stuff they sell has no other useful attributes. Retail and speciality retail are quite different. A store that sells random stuff is not going to really sell bikes and a bike shop is not going to sell say laundry detergent and ten pack of wiper blades. You aren't going to get quality from a place that doesn't really sell quality.
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Old 05-06-22, 08:19 AM
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I agree when ppl post their bikes for sale I often see mistakes in their descriptions
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Old 05-06-22, 09:04 AM
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Kijiji does have fields and prompts for the frame size.
but I also see ads where the poster provides a pic of the frame size sticker.
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Old 05-07-22, 05:46 AM
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The platforms don't give a whit about correct descriptions, good photos, sells or doesn't sell, happy or unhappy buyers/sellers. It's about clicks, advertising, and monetizing activity.
What next, requirements for dishware posts?
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Old 05-07-22, 06:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
Hard to say what motivates people. In the US, people buy brand new crap bikes at Wal-Mart instead of buying a better used bike for the same price. I guess it's easier, and they put more trust in a new bike. What can ya do? People are dumb.
It's half dumb and the other half is lazy. It definitely takes some effort to learn about the used bike market, how to tell what's a good bike and what's not, and then there's the whole aspect of doing whatever maintenance it needs, etc. We take that knowledge and ability for granted, but for the average person it's easier to just buy a new bike. The dumb part of it is when people expect a piece of machinery like a bicycle to have ANY kind of decent quality, when the whole thing costs $249.
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Old 05-07-22, 06:50 AM
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Craigslist is a good source for bikes, and also Facebook. What works for me is to specifically NOT include any sizing information in my searches. People don't know what size they have anyway and there are a number of ways to express it (S-M-L, inches, cm) and there's no consistency. Just leave size out of the search terms and learn to recognize frame sizes by sight.

On a traditional horizontal top tube bike, you can usually tell by the length (height) of the head tube. On other frame configurations there are similar visual clues. After a while you'll just recognize bikes that might fit you. Just scroll through the pictures.

I use Search Tempest to include multiple Craigslist areas at once.

https://www.searchtempest.com/
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Old 05-07-22, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Neese View Post
It's half dumb and the other half is lazy. It definitely takes some effort to learn about the used bike market, how to tell what's a good bike and what's not, and then there's the whole aspect of doing whatever maintenance it needs, etc. We take that knowledge and ability for granted, but for the average person it's easier to just buy a new bike. The dumb part of it is when people expect a piece of machinery like a bicycle to have ANY kind of decent quality, when the whole thing costs $249.
It's a shame that a good quality new bike is out of reach for a lot of people, and that buying used requires time and resources to research and seek one out. Not everyone has the same means, so I can totally understand the temptation for an economically disadvantaged person to buy themselves (or their kid) a shiny new bike for $249.

Regardless of wealth, I also think that by-and-large, the general, non-cycling public still considers bicycles to be essentially toys, so it's hard for them to fathom that one might cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. Buying a new Wal-Mart bike is perhaps their way of thinking that they've "outsmarted the system."

Last edited by Rolla; 05-07-22 at 09:30 AM.
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Old 05-07-22, 09:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
It's a shame that a good quality new bike is out of reach for a lot of people, and that buying used requires time and resources to research and seek one out. Not everyone has the same means, so I can totally understand the temptation for an economically disadvantaged person to buy themselves (or their kid) a shiny new bike for $249.

Regardless of wealth, I also think that by-and-large, the general, non-cycling public still considers bicycles to be essentially toys, so it's hard for them to fathom that one might cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. Buying a new Wal-Mart bike is perhaps their way of thinking that they've "outsmarted the system."
I've more often heard of riders getting killed in accidents with >$1000 bikes than riders with ~$200 cheap walmart stuff.

The main reason is speed and exposure. Walmart riders don't ride at speeds, at long distances on high mountains where you can reach 60 mph on descents like those with >$1000 bikes do. They ride a lot slower and a lot shorter distances where cheap bikes would do the job safely and reliably enough. If a product is way too dangerous, nobody will buy, simple as that like nobody bombs descents at 60 mph on a walmart bike.

and that buying used requires time and resources to research and seek one out
Correct. And people on tight budgets tend to have much less free time on their hands than people who had lots of easy, disposable income.
Ofc, anyone with lots of free time probably help someone needing a new bike on a very tight budget do the research for them?
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Old 05-07-22, 11:36 PM
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Originally Posted by couldwheels View Post
I've more often heard of riders getting killed in accidents with >$1000 bikes than riders with ~$200 cheap walmart stuff.
People on $1000+ bikes ride more miles.

Originally Posted by couldwheels View Post
you can reach 60 mph on descents like those with >$1000 bikes do.
99% of the freds on $1000 bikes barely hit 16 mph, let alone 60.
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Old 05-08-22, 06:45 AM
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I think most here would buy a new bike from a store that exclusively sells bikes (not a "big box" store). A local bike shop can help with proper sizing, recommendations as to which type of bike you might like best, and assist which bike fits your budget. Buying a used bike is a whole 'nother story. The better informed and knowledgeable the seller and buyer is, the better the transaction will go. If the seller doesn't know specifics, then it's up to the buyer to ask the right questions. If the buyer knows what type (road, mountain, hybrid, etc.) bike they are seeking, perhaps a good place to start would be distance from the ground to the top of the top tube (standover height). If the bike hits the "tender parts" with feet flat on the ground, it most likely will not fit the rider. Not written in stone, but generally a good place to at least start. Of course, there is no substitute for actually riding the bike and having the knowledge regarding quality levels of parts, how they work, etc.
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Old 05-08-22, 08:35 AM
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As to the whole $249 dollar bike thing: If someone has $249 this week, for this weeks temporary want & a $249 bike fits the bill...They are not poor. They have poor priorities & a spending addiction.

If they left the cookie on the table for another week, they could have 3x the bike. Double that again to a month of patience, & they *could* eek out a $1000 & never need to buy a bike again.

I have no idea what Canadian Tire is, but I do know $249 is the cost of 2 tanks of petrol. Nary a thought is given to the cost for that.

Patience is a virtue.
Success favors the persistent.

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Old 05-08-22, 02:27 PM
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I'll push a BSO as hard as a LBS brand name bicycle IF I didn't care about my body & the craftsmanship & materials of the BSO.

Being realistic, I know better than to blast down a hill on a BSO exceeding 60MPH. Will others do it? Probably. Do I really care? No.
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Old 05-08-22, 04:10 PM
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Canadian Tires bike = Walmart bike or even less. A decent used brand name bike would be my first choice and it's not difficult to learn how to do your own maintenance.
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Old 05-08-22, 07:49 PM
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Several years ago I was looking for a 16" bike for my daughter and found a cute Hello Kitty bike at Toys R Us. She took it for a ride but it seemed like it was a challenge for her. We visited a state park that had bikes for guests to use and she spent time on a Trek 16" Precaliber and rode like the wind. When we got home, she was even less impressed with the HK bike. Took her to the local Trek store and purchased the same 16" Precaliber model and she's been tearing it up on two wheels since then.

I have since upgraded her to a used 20" Hotrock purchased on FB marketplace for $80. Sold new at the LBS for $350. I can probably double my money on it if I wanted to sell it.

In our house, sizing is a challenge. Those big box bikes never really fit my wife and me. Neither of us realized it we got our first "real" bikes after our daughter got the Precaliber..

The local Trek dealer got my wife into a Verve. She rode both the XS and S sizes and we purchased the S. Money and time well spent for sure.

I lucked into Cannondale Quick 1 as it was purchased it gently used from a friend. She knew the specs and answered all my questions. Why did she sell? Upgraded to a CF Specialized Roubaix.

The 1995 Hardrock Ultra was purchased on FB marketplace. Seller measured standover and I checked it out in person. Good pics helped me figure out the basics I needed to go forward with the purchase. I could figure out the rest. I have wondered if it is on the small size until...

I picked up a very nice 1994 S-Works M2 mountain bike this week. It is one size larger than the Hardrock and standover is fine but not as roomy as the Hardrock. I'll see how I feel on it after some time with it.


Either way, with some patience, more persistence, and some research good used bikes can be found. I'm not sure if it is the hunt or the ride I like more...
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Old 05-08-22, 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by veganbikes View Post
Canada tire is not a bike shop .
It surely is not and it isn't the same company as Canadian Tire
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