My car broke down 2 weeks ago so I bought a used bike off offer up so I can commute to work 8.30 miles there and another 8 back (50 min ride) I bought a used Avalon and it worked fine for 2 weeks. The gears started to fail the chain would come off. A few days ago the front wheel started to wobble and today I got a flat. I am looking to purchase a bike and would love to hear your thoughts. I don't know what to get. I only have $200 to spend & I need it by tomorrow. I don't ride the bike on the street I ride it on the sidewalk but there are some areas where I have to ride it on grass/rocky dirt areas. I also have to tackle 3 hills. P.s I am. 5''4 and weight 230lbs

  • 1
    Rather than buying another bike on short notice, it could be more cost effective to get your current bike repaired if it fits you alright
    – Rider_X
    Mar 30, 2017 at 22:44
  • 3
    You bought a used bso, which isn't a great choice. If you have 200 bucks, go find a local bike shop that sells bikes and see if they'll sell you a decent quality used bike for under that much -- it should be possible. If that isn't doable in the time frame and it has to be done today (and you can't bus/cab/uber until you can find a bike shop), you're likely going to spend as nearly much on the current bike to fix it as to get a new one like it (i.e. running down to walmart and picking up a similar bike for about 100 dollars).
    – Batman
    Mar 30, 2017 at 23:01
  • The walmart option is not the better option in the long run -- bso's tend to be quite poorly built. That being said, some pictures of whats wrong would help -- the description is pretty vague. If its just a flat tire in the front (you said the wheel (not tire) is wobbling, which makes me think truing), thats a easy fix, and a shop will charge maybe 20 bucks for that. As for the gears failing, you may just need to adjust chain tension (moving the rear wheel back in the dropouts where it sits) and adjust the shifters: parktool.com/blog/repair-help/rear-derailleur-adjustment
    – Batman
    Mar 30, 2017 at 23:08
  • 1
    If you live near a major urban city, you could search for a Bike Co-op organization or bike exchange where you can buy a decent proper bike for cheap. Some of these might also teach basic bike mechanics that could either help you fix the bike you already have or keep your future bike in good shape. Mar 31, 2017 at 4:40
  • 1
    By tomorrow just buy a new tube.
    – paparazzo
    Mar 31, 2017 at 8:47

2 Answers 2


Use a local bike shop (LBS) who can give you good advice and proper servicing.

Don't be tempted to get a big that is too big for you; reach is more important than height. I often see people over stretched. Also go for a bike that is well built rather than a Walmart 'bargain'.

Good bikes last for years and years and are fixable. Modern bikes with decent wheels and brakes are often cheaper than buying an old boneshaker. Spend the extra for reliability and make sure you get a decent lock so it isn't stolen the first time you turn your back.

Keep you tires properly inflated (60 psi minimum) and take advantage of your LBS's track pump for a top up every 2 weeks or so.


If you get a new bike get disc brakes or good quality caliper brakes that don't rub against the wheel.

Place bike in air and spin wheels to see if brakes nip wheels while spinning.

I got a schwinn for $300 with disk brakes and it's so so much smoother riding. my previous bike brakes were rubbing on the wheels. just a thought.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.