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10

Make sure that the frame is not compromised. Looks for cracks or big dents, or any asymmetry in the forks. Make sure that there is no rust through the paint anywhere. If there is any chrome, make sure that any rust is only on the surface. Make sure that the seatpost isn't seized. This is pretty easy as you can just loosen the seatpost bolt and give the ...


9

For the most part, bicycles have terrible resale value, which means that you can usually get a really good deal on a used bike. As for the condition of the components, one can't say without actually seeing them, but quality components should have a much longer life than 1500kms. That said, inspect for obvious signs of wear (there should be almost none), and ...


9

In my area, there is a shop called Recycled Cycles, where they buy old bikes, fix them up and resell them at a discount. When my wife and I last visited, they had quite a few vintage bikes for sale. You can also take a look at pawn shops, and if you live near a college/university, the campus police may hold a bike auction near the beginning of the school ...


8

With any bike the most important thing is "fit" -- is the bike too tall, too short, too much "reach", too little? For a bike to have a good basic fit you should be able to stand over it flat-footed and have "comfortable" clearance at the crotch. For bikes with lower than normal top bars (eg, many mountain bikes), you should pick a bike that would be ...


6

As far as avoiding stolen bikes: I would use definitely use Craigslist, but just make sure the seller purports to be the owner (not "I'm selling it for a friend"--what, your friend doesn't have a phone to answer questions? Out of town working for the CIA? Mmm-hmmm...), and has knowledge of the bike. Like, be able to tell you what the frame size is ...


6

Issues of where to find a bike have been answered pretty thoroughly here, including the standard disclaimers of making sure a bike isn't stolen before purchasing. On advice for how to see how ride-worthy a bike is: Definitely take a look at the bike before buying. Give it a quick once-over for general wear or use. If the bike looks like it hasn't been ...


6

Some department store bikes are actually pretty descent. A few years ago some of the bigger named bike companies started selling bikes through WalMart and other stores. Which tubes are 4130 and which are just high-ten is near impossible to tell unless someone told you so look for other signs of higher quality. I will look at the welds, if you have centipedes ...


6

eBay is a good tool for determining value, search for your item selecting closed auctions and you often get a list of your item, bike in this case that has already sold (or not). The price of those transactions helps me determine relative value. Likewise craigslist shows you another view of what people are asking. If your target bike is being listed for ...


5

Short answer: yes. Long answer: You might not find what you are looking for at a shop. I would seriously suggest checking online. Three reasons: There are hundreds of models/sizes/configurations of bike parts. The part(s) that you are looking for will need to match the parts/bike you already have. The likelihood that your local bike shop has the exact ...


5

eBay: http://kleinanzeigen.ebay.de/anzeigen/s-fahrrad/k0 Open in Chrome and use 'Google Translate'. 'Fahrrad' is your keyword. P.S. Most German people speak better English than some English people do!!!


5

The first thing I look at is the components. Even the cheapest bikes have Shimano components, however they are below the lowest tier. It will say Shimano but will have no tier designation such as Deore,Ultegra,Alivio,etc. Go to the Shimano website and check out the component levels so you"ll be familiar with the names. One give away of a cheap bike is a ...


4

Here are some tips to avoid getting a stolen bike: Google the phone number. If they are selling a number of bikes be alert. If the number is listed with a number of different names, you can almost guarantee the bike is stolen. The price might be suspiciously low. Thieves often know little about bikes and often have very poor grammar and spelling. If it's a ...


4

Here's the short list of should haves in mostly descending order: Coil or air sprung fork with rebound adjustment, minimum of 80mm travel. Specs any lower than this aren't actually meant for actual mountain biking. Maybe a little unpaved riding, but not mountain biking. Replacing a fork is expensive. Buy a bike with a fork as described and the subsequent ...


4

As per @Mikes Answer, but a bit more than fits into a comment. Only buy a bike with the brand/model of major components able to be researched. On a Mountain bike, shocks are a dead giveaway, and if rear suspension, look at the shock, although they sometimes don't have a model, the good ones always have a brand. From there, pictures will get you close ...


3

They likely have "extra" bike parts around that are scavenged from bikes that were unrepariable, just be sure you know what your getting. There likely isn't any warranty included on used equipment, so if it was a "distressed" part that finally breaks a week after you've been using it, you be replacing it again. If you trust the bike shop and it is a ...


3

The majority of department store ("mtb") bikes uses 1" quill stems, have bolt on wheels instead of quick releases, has a free-wheel instead of a cassette, typically has a one piece crank w/plastic pedals, a chain guard on the front sprocket, seat post diameter has a continuity of being 27.2, usually never has a spot to put a normal bottle cage on the frame ...


3

Visit a bike co-op Look online to find bicycle co-ops near you. Lots of cities have co-ops. The friendly volunteers in your local co-op can teach you how to fix your bike. Co-ops also have a wide variety of tools you can use. Shop time is often as cheap as USD$5 to USD$10 per hour. They may also have a library of books you can read. As well, they may rent ...


3

In addition to picking the right type of bike and avoiding stolen bikes, which have been addressed in existing answers, it's important to consider whether a particular bike is well made and in good condition. Depending on the price, a few minor maintenance needs may be expected, but a single serious problem or a large number of minor problems can easily make ...


3

Simple adjustment It may be that your brakes and gears are simply out of adjustment. The easiest way to confirm this would be to take it to your local bike store (LBS) and ask them for advice. Most stores are pretty friendly and helpful towards keen amateurs. If they advise that it's just adjustments they can do it themselves, or show you the adjustment ...


3

A reasonable estimate can be found using a site like Bicycle Blue Book. This site is a database of used bike sale transactions going back for almost a decade, and has a number of pretty obscure manufacturers listed. You can even add upgrades you have made from the stock and get an estimate of how that changes the value, though it doesn't account for things ...


3

Since we live in the advent of the smartphone, you can likely look at the brand and model of a bike and quickly google it. Two sites to look at are Bicycle Blue Book and Bikepedia. This probably helps you avoid having to look at the individual component specs since most of the time if a part is replaced, it is replaced with something at least as good as the ...


2

Technically not in Germany but 2 kilometers from the border, there is this market: http://www.velostation-strasbourg.org/bourse-aux-velos.html It is run by a non-profit. A few hundred bicycles at each event, you can put your own for sale too. I bought one of my bicycles there.


2

Brake maintenance has a few different steps: Ensure that the brakes pads are not worn out and sitting a decent distance from the rim. If you can't see a minimum wear line, it's time to replace your pads. If the brakes are sitting more than a couple of millimeters from the rim, you will have to adjust the system. If there's a barrel adjuster somewhere in ...


2

One important thing is to give the bike a test ride, and feel it. You can tell a lot that way. Check the frame over well, look for dents, scratches in the paint (and rust, if the frame is steel) make sure the wheels are sound. The components, everything. Just give it a good look all over. Anything broken should be fairly obvious. Also ask a lot of ...


2

For sure get a second hand. I've got my Specialized SJ Evo for 2200$ while a new one costs about 5000$, from a guy that works in LBS with a new set of brakes, cassette & chain, and I can't say that I was too much in hunt after it. Just an example for how much more could you get for your money, if you choose a used one. Just be sure to check it very well. ...


2

From what you have said be prepared to end up with a dud. It's not easy for a novice to tell the difference in quality, and impossible to tell the condition of the drive train without close inspection, even for an expert. Obviously look at the condition. Tires with mold tags still on them are a likely sign of a low mileage bike. But a quality bike with ...


2

Just like with any other area of expertise, there is no substitute for years of experience. If you need a simple heuristic though, brand recognition in combination with a general knowledge of groupsets and their quality can go a long way. At the very least, know how to tell forged components from stamped. Learn Shimano's and Suntour's groupset lineups. ...


1

I can only answer on the second bullet point of your question: ...may have more rants/raves/discussions on web forums... Instead of infering this by the production count, you can directly find out how much discussion is happening for each particular bike model. A simple way is to use Google. For example: https://www.google.com/search?q=schwinn+letour ...


1

I believe that half the retail value of the bicycle is a good "rule of thumb" for a bike that is not more than 1-2 years old. A lot of new bikes are sold at great discounts (30% is not unusual) and this pushes the prices of used bikes down. The technology improves each year as well, and new models might be released at even lower price points than the ...


1

With old road bikes (e.g. pre-brifter) it's often as simple as looking at the shifters. If they're on the stem, it's a department store bike. If the shifters are on the downtube, it was probably from a bike shop. The only exception is that some touring bikes supposedly came with stem shifters. Another great indicator with older bikes, if it's a butted ...



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