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Newbie with question about have a bike built or rebuilt

Old 03-22-15, 04:56 PM
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solo79
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Newbie with question about have a bike built or rebuilt

So i posted last week about buying a diamondback hybrid to get started in biking. I am in my late 30s and horribly out of shape. Got some great answers, this place seem great for dumb newbies like me.

I honestly forgot I had bought a Raleigh M-30 mountain bike about 18 or 20 years ago in college. I rode it a couple of times then stuck it in an open air leaky shed at my parents. Got it out today.

The frame seems fine. No rust. Seat and tires are dry rotted. Some of the spokes are rusted on the rims. Gears will not move.

So I figure the frame is the only thing worth trying to salvage. Does anyone have an idea if it would make sense to try to do anything with it?

I think it would be kinda cool to bring this old college bike back to life, if i could do it for as round $300 - $350

Could I take it like it is, rusted parts and dry rot, to a local bike shop and askthem to rebuild it for that price?

Could I strip it myself and buy all the necessary parts on my own, then take that to a local shop and get them to build it and keep the total around that?

If this is a stupid question, forgive me. This is new to me
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Old 03-22-15, 06:04 PM
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So get your bike shop to do all that work I think would be very unethical. The cost of it all would foreshadow anything decent you cold already buy used and newer than your old m-30.
if you're dead set on the m-30 I'd scour for used parts or good deals on parts and you could probably build a fully use able bike for 150 or maybe less. It wouldn't be anything flashy but Yould have a running bike.
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Old 03-23-15, 01:19 AM
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I'd actually be surprised if you needed to replace as much as you think you do. Bearing assemblies likely need to be overhauled, likely a new chain, new cables and housing, etc. It's a somewhat substantial mechanical job, but it should be doable. The only concern is that getting a shop to do even a couple hours of work could eclipse the value of the bike (which is low--probably less than $200 in good condition). If you think you may ever be interested in learning bike mechanics--great! Hold onto it for that day.

That said, you can probably get a shop to get it in functional working order for less than $300, potentially less or much less depending on what is necessary. I'd make it fairly clear that you just need it in reasonable safe running condition, not necessarily overhauled to an exacting standard.

Yours is actually a totally reasonable question. Whatever you do, don't throw the bike in the trash. Most of it can probably be restored to functionality, and while not fancy or very valuable, it is very reasonable functional transportation.
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Old 03-23-15, 02:14 AM
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Post some photos of your bike, and what you think is wrong with it.

I agree... hard to justify dumping $300 into a $100 bike. Although, it is nice to have a good fully functional bike. You may need tires, tubes, whatnot, and everyone should know/learn how to mount them. Don't forget tires also just loose pressure over time.

One of the risks of not doing a good maintenance is to damage the parts. So, if the grease is bad or bearings are loose, you could pit the cones or even damage the races, causing more expense later (if that hasn't already occurred during your college days).

Thrift stores are great for acquiring parts on a budget, but count on everything needing a full tune-up. However, things like aluminum rims might have been rare 30 years ago, but common today.
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Old 03-23-15, 06:17 AM
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If you enjoy doing the work and bargain hunting it can be fun. It is debatable if it makes financial sense though. You can buy a pretty good used bike for $300-$500. You can even buy a good new mtb like a Giant Atx for $440.
I have an old GT mtb that I have had since 1993. I got back into mtb again. I rode that bike a few times and knew that it was too small now. I bought a 29er and converted the GT to a hybrid.
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Old 03-23-15, 07:13 AM
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If the Raleigh is that far gone, it's not worth bringing back. The parts to rebuild that bike are at least $100 for a chain, tires, saddle and cables. Then you'll need some special bike tools, and knowledge. All to return an entry level old MTB back to the street. The M-30 was one off the bottom of the Raleigh MTBs back then. If it was a high level bike, it might be worth it.
The Giant ATX recommendation is a good one. As it stands now, that's the best buy among the big three bike manufacturers for an MTB.
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Old 03-24-15, 03:54 PM
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Thanks guys.

MisterK why would it be unethical to take it to a bike shop? I can't imagine giving them business is unethical. They are in business to do work and get paid. I fail to see how that would make me unethical. It might make me an idiot for spending that much on a $100 bike, but ethics wouldn't play a part in it (IMHO)
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Old 03-24-15, 04:29 PM
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beware!

doing something like what you are describing is what causes me to be a predicament where i own eight bikes, six or seven of which i don't need. but i can be fun and a good learning experience.

and BTW, in certain parts of the Canada and mid-western U.S the act of paying someone else to do things that you can do more cost-effectively yourself is, in itself, unethical. in some cases tantamount to blasphemy, heresy and devilment.

i'm from that kind of culture.

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Old 03-24-15, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by solo79 View Post
Thanks guys.

MisterK why would it be unethical to take it to a bike shop? I can't imagine giving them business is unethical. They are in business to do work and get paid. I fail to see how that would make me unethical. It might make me an idiot for spending that much on a $100 bike, but ethics wouldn't play a part in it (IMHO)
I'd agree with you, it's ethical. I've purchased used parts off the internet then brought them to a bike shop to install because I was in a travel job and didn't have time to do the work myself. The bike shop I do most of my business with had no problem charging me for labor and any additional parts it took to complete the work. They're there to make money. I would draw the line at buying a new part and bringing it to them to install. That might get them a little PO'd.
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Old 03-25-15, 01:28 AM
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Originally Posted by roccobike View Post
I'd agree with you, it's ethical. I've purchased used parts off the internet then brought them to a bike shop to install because I was in a travel job and didn't have time to do the work myself. The bike shop I do most of my business with had no problem charging me for labor and any additional parts it took to complete the work. They're there to make money. I would draw the line at buying a new part and bringing it to them to install. That might get them a little PO'd.
Good point, if it is an item they sale, then it would be in good taste to buy from them. But as far as having them "do all the work", well that is part of their business
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