Friday, March 06, 2009

The bargain bikes of ebay

I'm a pretty constant lurker in ebay looking for bargain bike bits. I've often got a project in the shed which needs a part or two so I put in a lot of silly low bids, some of which bear fruit. One thing I have noticed is that the demand for old parts is growing strongly and so are prices. The sad truth is that no matter how much we value our rides, sometimes we delude ourselves about their true value.

Check out this gem. For only $130 you can be the proud owner of a 'vintage' bike which looks like it's spent the last 20 years at the bottom of the river it's named after. No tyres, no brakes, a saddle that looks like it was used to absorb an IED attack and rust galore. But hey, it's old and it's a single speed so some fool might buy it right? But you'll have to pick it up yourself from Hobart, there's no chance of the seller extending himself to ship this gem of antiquity, possibly because it weighs 80kg. Why, why, why on earth has nobody placed a bid on this bike? You heathens of Hobart.

Oh, you want something roadworthy? For a mere $92 (at current bidding) you can get your hands on a sought-after Repco Traveller Road bike? Equiped not just with gears, but a ''gearing system" and tyres that "will need eventual replacement" the seller does kindly point out that the the Traveller "is making an encore in Victoria now as a popular vintage bike". Among whom? The mentally deranged? And why not in other states? No shipping on this one either cycling archaologists, you'll have to take the station wagon to Glenroy.

But why spend $130 or even $92, when for just $5 you could pick up a "Vintage Malvern Star bike single speed fixed project"? Never mind the fact it looks like it might have been ridden into a car and has a saddle that would cause irreversible injury, this one also has tyres. They're flat, but what do you expect for $5? Bid early, bid often.

854km so far this year.


Anonymous said...

On the other hand, $150 for this gem of a frame.

All the best, Mike / Raleigh

David Killick said...

Looks like a pretty fine piece of kit to me. $150 is cheap!