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Buying an used, older carbon bike. Tips?

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Buying an used, older carbon bike. Tips?

Old 05-12-10, 03:11 PM
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antiuser
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Buying an used, older carbon bike. Tips?

Someone in my area is selling a 1997 model LeMond Maillot Jaune, it's a carbon fibre frame + fork with full Campy record components... I'm going to check it out tonight after work, and since I've never owned a carbon bike before I'm wondering if there's anything I should look for in the frame, signs of wear or anything... and what's a fair price for the bike.

Here's the link to the specs on bikepedia: https://www.bikepedia.com/QuickBike/B...aune&Type=bike
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Old 05-12-10, 03:39 PM
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I'm not really sure about price. 13 year old carbon bike with older 9 speed drivetrain and decent wheels? Maybe $600-800?

If you're buying used carbon I would talk to the owner. See if you can trust him and ask if he's had any wrecks on it or if he's not the original owner. Carbon damage may be difficult to spot, and some carbon damage nearly impossible. I would thoroughly check over the frame and look for signs of a crash.
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Old 05-12-10, 04:04 PM
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You can buy used steel, you can buy used Ti, you can even buy used aluminum, but there's no way in the world I would buy used carbon. It's too fragile, too brittle. You don't know what has happened to that bike over the years, and you cannot expect the truth from the seller. He's trying to make a buck, and he couldn't care less about you.

In case you don't know, when carbon fails it fails suddenly and unexpectedly, usually without warning. And when it fails while being ridden it often shatters like plastic, glass or china. Without warning. This could result in serious bodily injury or death. It's not worth it.

If you can't afford new carbon, buy a metal bike . . . it's that cut and dry.
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Old 05-12-10, 05:32 PM
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bleh, W/E. carbon is NOT brittle. how many people do you personally know that have had carbon fail? none. how many pro's ride carbon bikes? all of them. they also put out tons more power than we do and very, very, very rarely have carbon fail on them. i assume probably to the same ratio metal bikes have failed at the joints (something I have personally heard of).

i rode a bike up until recently that was from 1991 that was carbon. trek 2300 with shimano 600 on it. bought with thousands of miles on it. rode the piss out of it and now my HEAVIER father is riding the piss out of it. you can get very good deals on used carbon bikes and unless the lugs are loose or the joints are cracked i say buy it. cant say how much a frame with used record on it is but my bike was 400 bucks and i found it to be a very good deal.
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Old 05-12-10, 05:47 PM
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As far as my (limited) experience with carbon fiber in general, my prosthesis is made with a carbon fiber shell. Any time that a failure has occured that involved the carbon fiber loosing integrity it was preceedend by both visual signs in the resin, as well as the accompanying crunchy noise. I knew well before actual failure that it was emminent. Given that there is some difference in between my socket, foot, and a piece of tubing, but even still, every situation that I have seen or heard of CF breaking involved forces that would have bent or broken metal as well.
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Old 05-12-10, 10:30 PM
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"Total Bike Repair And Maintenance" which should be for sale at Barnes & Noble in the Magazines sections has a great article on page 198 on Buying used Carbon Frames. Basically, it runs you through an inspection of a used carbon bike. If you are seriously considering buying a used carbon bike then check out this magazine
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Old 05-12-10, 10:54 PM
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Here's a good link to check when buying a used carbon fiber bike.

https://www.bikeradar.com/gear/articl...on-frame-23020
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Old 05-12-10, 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Prairie Native View Post
bleh, W/E. carbon is NOT brittle. how many people do you personally know that have had carbon fail? none. how many pro's ride carbon bikes? all of them. they also put out tons more power than we do and very, very, very rarely have carbon fail on them. i assume probably to the same ratio metal bikes have failed at the joints (something I have personally heard of).

i rode a bike up until recently that was from 1991 that was carbon. trek 2300 with shimano 600 on it. bought with thousands of miles on it. rode the piss out of it and now my HEAVIER father is riding the piss out of it. you can get very good deals on used carbon bikes and unless the lugs are loose or the joints are cracked i say buy it. cant say how much a frame with used record on it is but my bike was 400 bucks and i found it to be a very good deal.
The Pro's get a new carbon bike (or two or three) to ride every year so that argument is kinda pointless.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by gus6464 View Post
The Pro's get a new carbon bike (or two or three) to ride every year so that argument is kinda pointless.
tom boonen is on bike number 10 for the year. that argument is 100% pointless.
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Old 05-13-10, 12:22 AM
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Originally Posted by thegunner View Post
tom boonen is on bike number 10 for the year. that argument is 100% pointless.
Yeah I figured. There is no way a Pro team is going to let their people ride the same frame over and over. I wonder if on the Tour de France they all get a new bike on every stage.
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Old 05-17-10, 01:46 AM
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Thanks for the advice, guys. I went and checked it out and, while I didn't see any red flags and it was clearly a well-cared-for bike, it wasn't the bike for me.
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Old 05-17-10, 02:59 PM
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Don't worry about the frame; worry about the fork.
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