El Cheapo Walmart Bike

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2015 12:50 AM GMT
    Been working out of town (again) for a the past few weeks, and really miss my bikes. So today I went to wally world and found a cheap "park bike" I can use for everything from street riding, bike parks, and some trails (no hardcore downhill, though).

    I've already broken the bottom bracket (thingy that lets the pedals spin) from jumping it too much. icon_lol.gif

    Oh and the first thing I did before riding it was remove the kickstand, reflectors, and that stupid-looking chain guard.

    51A5TUWfOCL.jpg
  • Breeman

    Posts: 339

    Mar 16, 2015 11:45 PM GMT
    I stay away from Walmart. It's like the dollar store for me. You think you're saving money when in the long run the damn thing falls apart and you end up spending MORE money when you have to buy another and another.

    I bought a Swiss Army knapsack about 12 years ago and it's still like new!! Mind you I spent a little more on it but I figure I would have gone threw at least 5 cheap Walmart knapsacks over 12 years costing me more and... well you get the idea.

    Note: I don't work for Swiss Army, I don't know anyone who does and I have no shares in Swiss Army.
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    Mar 17, 2015 2:32 AM GMT
    I also tried one, once. The chain kept rubbing on the front derailleur. The brakes rubbed on the rim. I managed to sell it to someone down the street for $20 less than I paid for it, and I even warned them that it was a piece of shit, so I didn't feel bad.
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    Mar 17, 2015 2:53 AM GMT
    Breeman saidI stay away from Walmart. It's like the dollar store for me. You think you're saving money when in the long run the damn thing falls apart and you end up spending MORE money when you have to buy another and another.

    I bought a Swiss Army knapsack about 12 years ago and it's still like new!! Mind you I spent a little more on it but I figure I would have gone threw at least 5 cheap Walmart knapsacks over 12 years costing me more and... well you get the idea.

    My Mother always told me that same thing. Provided that you really are getting genuine quality, and not just paying for the vain prestige of an image label, then paying more upfront can save you more in the long run.

    As she'd tell me, a quality item can outlast several of the cheaper, and cost less than their combined individual prices. And in the meantime, you typically have something that looks better, works better, feels & fits better if clothing, and often has more features.

    On the other hand, in this case, I believe Paul only wants the bike for the short time he's in SD. And then I presume leave it behind? So durability and longevity are not such important considerations. This bike is an expendable.

    The problem is that Paul is very hard on his bikes.

    "I've already broken the bottom bracket (thingy that lets the pedals spin) from jumping it too much."

    So that's the dilemma. You can't jump a cheap, flimsy bike very much, but you don't wanna pay big bucks for a stronger bike that's probably not coming back home. Because back home are already more high-quality bikes than there's room to store them, or there's a need to have.
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    Mar 18, 2015 12:30 AM GMT
    Every time somebody mentions "Consumer Reports" magazine, I remember their "in depth" study of bicycles in which they concluded that there is no difference between dime-store bikes and expensive name brands. icon_rolleyes.gif I don't remember what their "test methods" were, but probably a couple of fat guys pedaled them around a parking lot.
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    Mar 18, 2015 4:53 AM GMT
    My recommendation for the "temporary" bike is to find a flea market, secondhand shop, yard sale, etc and look for something made prior to the 1980s. You're almost guaranteed to get a quality piece of work not only because there was less cheap junk on the market then but because the stuff that DID have longevity issues will have worn to dust long ago. Any Chicago Schwinn or brasshead Raleigh (references to their badges, the old Chicago-built Schwinns have "Chicago" printed at the base of the headbadge and the old Raleighs having gorgeous stamped/enameled brass headbadges) is a fantastic bet. Fuji, Columbia, and just about anything with that patina that says "i spent at least five years of my life sliding around in the back of a pickup somewhere with gravel roads" are also pretty safe bets. As long as all the spinny parts do their jobs with a minimum of noise (grating is bad) you've got yourself a solid piece that you could PROBABLY hand down some day.


    Yes, I love old things. They have history, stories, and memories attached to them and i'm a sentimental sop, so shoot me.
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    Mar 18, 2015 7:23 AM GMT
    These are a bit more expensive than an el cheapo Walmart bike but the quality is much better. You have to be handy with tools; the handlebars and brakes need attaching. Most local bike shops no longer sell bikes as cheap as bikesdirect does. Click the little tabs along the top; not a very well designed site. I've ordered 3 bikes from them (1 was stolen).

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/
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    Mar 24, 2015 1:30 AM GMT
    Update: After a new front chainring and bottom bracket (expected both to break, so no big deal) it's still riding great!

    I'd intended on chunking it in a dumpster when I leave here, but this bike exceeded my expectations so I'm gonna send it to a friend in FL when this contract is up.