Buying a second hand bike can often look like a very attractive option, but it can also be a bit of a minefield at times!
There is the obvious financial benefit – 2nd hand bikes are going to cost a lot less, meaning that you could get more bang for your buck.
You’re going to find that you will be able to get a much higher spec bike than you would if you bought new. Typically for a 12 month old bike, you will save around 30-35% off the orgininal cost price!
However, it is highly unlikley that you will get any kind of warranty, so there are a number of things to check before you buy;
Give the frame a close inspection – look for damage to the paint work or chips, particulary if it’s a carbon frame as this could spell trouble.
Service history – when were the suspension forks or rear shocks last serviced? If it’s not within the last 6 months you’ll need to factor in at least 200 notes for this. While you are there, make sure that the stanchions and shock shaft are mark free. Chips or scratches here usually mean they are a right off.
Drive chain – take a chain wear indicator with you. If the chain has stretched and worn too much , then it is likely that the cassette and chainring will need replacing too. Depending on the spec of the bike, this could easily be another 200 notes to replace!
Tyres and brake pads – is there plenty of life left in both? A good set of tyres will set you back £100 and brake pads roughly £15-20 a pair.
Wheels – are they spinning freely, with no side to side wobble and free of dings or dents? If a wheel has been trued, then it is likely that it won’t last that much longer before a new rim and rebuild is required. You are looking at anywhere from £40-80 for a new rim, plus rebuild costs, so this could easily be another £100.
Another option would be to look for an ex-demo or ex-hire bike from a local bikeshop. Any dealer worth their salt would have already done and checked all the above before putting them up for sale. Yes you might pay a few £’s more than from e-bay, but it’s worth it for the piece of mind.
Some may even have some form of warranty with them (many ex demo’s will have new owners warranty!), and you will get the back up and support that you would usually expect from a L.B.S, so if anything does go wrong then they will be able to help you get it sorted!
Why not check out our range of ex-hire or ex-demo bikes?