questionswould you buy this bike?

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vote-for6vote-against

only if I never planned on riding uphill.

vote-for3vote-against

I thought that too, but I generally keep my bike in the highest gear and don't change it for hills.

vote-for6vote-against

yeah. also check out Craigslist or Freecycle to see if you can score a cheap or free one

vote-for0vote-against

Sorry, but no. I don't bike so I am not in a position to offer advice on one.

vote-for4vote-against

You apparently have a working bike that you normally ride in top gear (ie. like a fixie bike).

You claim to be a poor grad student.

You say you don't want to have to deal with shifting gears and thus are considering the purchase of a fixie bike for (at least) $100.

Note that this is a bike described as a rolling McDonalds' ad (not necessarily a bad thing) and that it will need repairs or upgrades at, or shortly after, purchase (not a good thing).

Note also that changing gears on your current bike and others with this capability is a purely optional activity and thus the main advantage to a fixie bike is the "Hey, I have a fixie bike and I'm cooler because of it" factor, though I'll grant that it might also be less likely to be stolen.

Thus, my suggestion would be to save your money or spend it on something more useful, like beer.

vote-for2vote-against

@baqui63: The bike I have now is in working condition however the rims are out of round and the gears change erratically by themselves especially when climbing hills. The bike I linked to has a flip-flop hub and doesn't have to be ridden as a fixie. I suppose I my definition of "broke" may be a bit broader than yours in that I meant that I cannot afford to purchase a bike that costs more than $100. It seemed like a lot of the repairs people mentioned were either cosmetic or were done by more avid bikers (like putting on bullhorn handle bars). Did you see any repairs that were absolutely necessary that people mentioned? (I'm not trying to be snarky I'm genuinely wondering).

Thanks for your reply.

vote-for4vote-against

@mortar235:

First, I'm not a bike mechanic, though I've been repairing bikes for ~40 years (which really makes me feel old all of a sudden).

You can likely repair most of your bike's problems in an hour or two using tools you have or can borrow. Even if you have to buy something or some parts, odds are pretty good that $100 will way more than cover it.

For books, Bicycle Maintenance and Repair for Dummies is quite good; The Ultimate Guide to Bicycle Maintenance isn't bad (decent pictures). There are also websites, eg. http://www.bikewebsite.com/repair-bike-index.htm (an ugly site with good info). (I'm not at my usual PC so don't have my bookmarks.)

As for the Walmart fixie, the "detailed technical review" raised issues that I found unacceptable on a new bike: bearings too tight, wheels dished, out of round and not laced correctly.

Why not get the Dummies book (maybe at the library?) and estimate the cost to repair your bike. You might end up with $80+ left over for beer. ;)