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Heard from a salesman...

Old 09-07-10, 09:55 PM
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youra6
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Heard from a salesman...

That older bikes are better built than bikes out today.

He wanted 300 dollars for a tip top shape 1996 DB Topanga. Before I take his word for it, what do you bike experts think?

Last edited by youra6; 09-07-10 at 10:00 PM.
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Old 09-07-10, 11:47 PM
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Utter, complete and unequivocal B.S.
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Old 09-08-10, 01:00 AM
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Sounds like a retro-grouch trying to swindle you. What a tool!

Don't do it! Spend your money on a new bike.
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Old 09-08-10, 06:17 AM
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Unlikely I would spend $300 on a bike that old. I might spend pocket-change, just to have something to play with, but that's it. Even taking in a bike like that for free can end up costing you once you run through it and begin to fix or replace whatever needs fixing or replacing. For example, I recently picked up a 1970s Huffy for $15, just for the heck of it, and then had to order a bit over $80 in parts to fix it up. I did that for fun. I'll never get that money back from the bike.
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Old 09-08-10, 07:23 AM
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Darn, well thanks for the heads-up. The 96 (non SE) doesn't have a front suspension which was one thing I wanted. I know my budget is pathetic, but whats half decent for a 300 dollar bike. It will just be a commuter to college. How is the Trek 820? I heard it was a half decent budget bike.
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Old 09-08-10, 08:12 AM
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Old 09-08-10, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by youra6 View Post
Darn, well thanks for the heads-up. The 96 (non SE) doesn't have a front suspension which was one thing I wanted. I know my budget is pathetic, but whats half decent for a 300 dollar bike. It will just be a commuter to college. How is the Trek 820? I heard it was a half decent budget bike.
For that kind of budget, the 820 is ok but I would do some searching for a better bike that's maybe just a year or two older. For example, last month I bought a new Trek 4300 for a good price at a local bike shop. Try looking on the websites of the larger bike shops in your area. Hopefully they'll have a slightly older model. Or call a few of them and just ask if they have any of "last year's bikes"...

But yeah, what that salesman told you is complete BS. It's like going to Toyota dealership and someone telling you the '95 Corolla is better than the 2011, and trying to sell it to you for $6000. New technology is always better than the old.

Last edited by rodeopunk_je87; 02-06-11 at 12:51 PM.
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Old 09-08-10, 12:48 PM
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Actually, it's true. Most of today's "mountain bikes" are hardly safe enough to take on a street, let alone a trail.
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Old 09-08-10, 02:19 PM
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many times, older frames are built from good steel. in that respect, yes, older bikes are built better.

but if some dude is trying to sell you a 14 year old bike for 300 dollars, that thing better have had some really nice upgrades slapped on it, or you're getting ripped. does it have a biopace crank? plastic pedals? generic wheelset? 6 or 7 speeds? gripshifts? friction shifters? foam grips? stay the hell away, at least for that price.
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Old 09-08-10, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by newbeat View Post
many times, older frames are built from good steel. in that respect, yes, older bikes are built better.
Yet, "many times" new frames are built from good steel. With good geometry. Proper fit for technical riding. With prior knowledge of what didn't work "back in the old days". Mountain bikes have progressed due to much err.
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Old 09-08-10, 03:22 PM
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i assume there is still debate regarding this.

Thanks for the helpful comments. Unfortunately, I am not going to be able to find trek 4300 for 336 around here

But at least know I know that 300 dollars for that bike is a rip off

I would like a 4300, but that is just out of my price range. I know you guys get asked a lot of questions but how is a Trek 3700 for $370?

Also at Erik's they are selling a Specialized Hardrock for 350.

I'll look around though

Last edited by youra6; 09-08-10 at 03:36 PM.
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Old 09-08-10, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by youra6 View Post
i assume there is still debate regarding this.

Thanks for the helpful comments. Unfortunately, I am not going to be able to find trek 4300 for 336 around here

But at least know I know that 300 dollars for that bike is a rip off

I would like a 4300, but that is just out of my price range. I know you guys get asked a lot of questions but how is a Trek 3700 for $370?

Also at Erik's they are selling a Specialized Hardrock for 350.

I'll look around though
Where are you located, again? Just check online for all the LBS's closest enough to you that you'd be willing to drive there to pick up your bike. I almost ended up pulling the trigger on a 3700 at one shop, then kept searching online and found a shop that had that 4300 on sale.

The 3700 is decent and obviously better than the 820. That Hardrock isn't really on sale for that price if that's what you're asking. And they're both pretty much the same equality. So from a 3700 to a Hardrock, it's more about personal preference rather than which is better.
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Old 09-08-10, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by youra6 View Post
He wanted 300 dollars for a tip top shape 1996 DB Topanga.
I bought a '96 Topanga two weeks ago, off of Craigslist. $40.00 was the price. To be worth $300.00, it would need to have a buttload of upgrades.

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Old 09-08-10, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
Yet, "many times" new frames are built from good steel. With good geometry. Proper fit for technical riding. With prior knowledge of what didn't work "back in the old days". Mountain bikes have progressed due to much err.
Many times, steel, new frames?

Nice, new, steel frames are rare as hen's teeth these days (at least in the middle price range).

Back in the mid 90s you could get quite a few NICE steel complete bikes in the $600-800 range. Not so much any more.
Lot's of good Al to choose from, though.

No way I'd plunk down $300 on Topanga, though.

I saw a Rocky Mountain with XT for $80 and a GT Karakoram with DX for $40 at garage sales this year, and I wasn't even looking.

Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 09-08-10 at 05:55 PM.
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Old 09-08-10, 10:22 PM
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I like the 3700, I have owned 5 bikes and all are hardtail bikes 1. Specialized, Trek 820, 96 Topanga, and a Trek 3400 and my 3700 is the best ride on roads and mountain. (adjust your forks to light).
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Old 09-12-10, 01:27 AM
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Originally Posted by youra6 View Post
i assume there is still debate regarding this.

Thanks for the helpful comments. Unfortunately, I am not going to be able to find trek 4300 for 336 around here

But at least know I know that 300 dollars for that bike is a rip off

I would like a 4300, but that is just out of my price range. I know you guys get asked a lot of questions but how is a Trek 3700 for $370?

Also at Erik's they are selling a Specialized Hardrock for 350.

I'll look around though
Sounds like you're from Minnesota, I picked up an older Trek 8500 for $300 last summer, age is up there, but it still had original tires and everything, the kid bought it, and lost interest. A new chain and tubes later and I had trek's best Alu frame in the day with some sweet wheels, a decent fork, and XT parts for $300.

https://www.bikepedia.com/QUICKBIKE/B...8500&Type=bike

I'll ride it a year or two, toss some new rubber on it, probably a newer fork with a lockout and more travel. I'd go disc but I love the Rolfs so there's no rush to go there.

However, Erik's has always been great to me, and there are definitely benefits to getting a bike at a shop if you're a newbie.
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Old 09-12-10, 08:10 AM
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If you're looking for a commuter bike for college you could check out a police auction website like propertyroom.com. I picked up a pretty decent steel trek on there for about 75 bucks.
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Old 09-14-10, 03:21 PM
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That Diamond back was like 430$ when it was new in 1996. Depreciation of bikes is a lot from that time period, unless its a super rare bike it would be worth that much. But that I think that bike is pretty regular, and I wouldn't pay more than 65 for it if its in good shape
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Old 09-22-10, 11:26 PM
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Thanks for all the answers guys. I still havent bought a bike yet, but my budget is now around 400 ~ dollars

And to the guy who thought im from MN, you are close Im actually going to school in Madison, but im out of state
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