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1992 Trek 820

Old 05-13-07, 08:18 PM
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dparente
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1992 Trek 820

I am a road bike rider and would like to start mountain biking and need some buying advice. I know little to nothing about mountain bikes. I would like to ride mostly dirt roads and and trails, nothing too intense. I have been looking through Craigslist and ebay to find an inexpensive used mountain bike and have not found anything in my price range yet. Earlier today I was biking through my neighborhood and came across someone cleaning our his garage. He had a vintage 1992 Trek 820 that he was considering selling. It was clear that it was heavily used. The hand grips were half gone, the fork was loose, and the front tire seemed to wobble a bit. On a positive side it road pretty smooth, the center pull brakes were solid, and the gears shifted well.

He said that I could have the bike for $40, which I thougt was too high. Any thought as to what this bike is worth. Am I under estimating the value of this bike.

Thanks,
dp
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Old 05-14-07, 10:46 AM
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jgedwa
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it is always hard to put a value on used bikes. To many that bike is completely worthless. And so, they can sometimes be had for nothing or very close to nothing. To some they are still useful, and so can have some small value.

If it was in good shape (and the one you describe is NOT; headset problem perhaps, front hub problem perhaps) and it was for sale where I am, would sell on Craig's List for someplace between $50 and $150.

I buy old bikes all the time, and my rule of thumb is that unless the bike is somehow special or collectable, then I would not pay more than $10 for a bike like that that was not in usable condition immediately. Suppose the bike is worth about $75 if it was in good usable condition. If you can do your own repair work you can repack the headset and hubs yourself for almost nothing, then it is still worth $40. If not, then you are pushing it a bit. Not unreasonably, but just a little.

My advice would be to talk the person down to half that. He is sitting on an unridable bike. It is of no use to him. No one is going to buy an unridable bike at a garage sale for $40 probably. I think he would be happy to get it out of his garage for any price.

jim

p.s., I also fully endorse anyone buying a junk bike on impulse for too much. I have several that started out that way. Oh well.
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Old 05-14-07, 06:19 PM
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dparente
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Thanks Jim! I was kind of thinking $20 too. I will have to put on my best bargaining face to see if I can get him there.

Don
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Old 05-14-07, 07:18 PM
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jgedwa
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I really did not want that response to sound discouraging. There is something to be said for getting something just because you feel like getting it. I have done it many times with bikes. And I have regretted some of the times I have not just paid a bit more to get something that I wanted.

But, if you are the patient, rational type, then it would make sense to either give this one a very low price or wait a bit longer. The bike gods are cruel and sometimes make you buy an over-priced piece of crap as a sacrifice so that 4 days later they will smile on you with a cheap and beautiful bike at the neighbor's garage sale.

jim
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Old 08-20-07, 08:40 AM
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Originally Posted by jgedwa View Post
The bike gods are cruel and sometimes make you buy an over-priced piece of crap as a sacrifice so that 4 days later they will smile on you with a cheap and beautiful bike at the neighbor's garage sale.

jim
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