Buying Bikes on E-Bay

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Bruce L, Jan 9, 2004.

  1. Bruce L

    Bruce L New Member

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    What has your experience been on buying high end bikes on E-Bay. There are some deals that seem to be unreal like $3000 under list price mostly coming out of Australia or England.
     
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  2. JohnO

    JohnO New Member

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    Lot of scams on ebay these days, including cycles. Usually, the item is priced over $1k, it is priced more than 50% lower than retail, and it's located overseas.

    Think about what you're doing - sending several thousand dollars to a total stranger in another country, and hoping they do the right thing, hoping it's what they say it is, hoping that it doesn't get damaged in shipment, and not a whole lot you can do if the deal goes sour.

    It isn't a good deal if you don't get anything.
     
  3. Bititanio

    Bititanio New Member

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    Pay attention to the feedback ratings on the users -- there are some legitimate dealers and good sellers out there too. If in doubt, see if they'll use the eBay "escrow" feature.
     
  4. jordon198

    jordon198 New Member

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    As to EBAY ratings, check how many are for selling vs. buying, I've heard that people will buy 10 or 15 items for a few dollars each using that to build up what appears to be a good history. Then they list the high ticket item ( bike, watch, plasma TV etc ) and make their score.

    I've never been burned on EBAY, the only time I questioned my sanity was sending $450.00 to Australia for a Jordan F1 pit crew suit. It came, but if it had not I would have had little recourse.
     
  5. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    I wouldn't take the risk, but maybe I'm just too old and cynical.

    Just ask yourself how the seller can sell a high-end bike for half of retail. Where did he get it?

    For bikes or anything else expensive, I like the simple business deal. You inspect the item you're buying, then make the payment and leave with what you bought. If it's new, I want to know you're dealing with an authorized distributor. If it's used, I want to inspect it closely for condition.....can't do that based on some internet pix.

    Having confidence in the item and the terms of sale before I get out my wallet is worth a lot to me.
     
  6. johntp

    johntp New Member

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    I just had my first experience w/ e-bay buying and it went well. Here's my 2 cents:

    1. Ask a lot of questions. You can send messages to the seller and if they don't sound forthright and knowledgeable, steer clear.

    2. Look often. You begin to see which are scams and which are real because you will see the same picture used in different ads. I don't even look at the one's that have $ 1.00 start bids.
    That's not likely to be someone who's for real.

    3. Check feedback. It's not foolproof, but it's one more piece of info.

    There are very good deals to be had. I got my Kestrel 200sci w/
    Dura Ace 8 speed for $ 590.00. Sure the group is older and the frame isn't state of the art, but its a solid frame to build on and
    a d*#n sight better than my Bianchi Brava.

    Adios
     
  7. Scuba Steve

    Scuba Steve New Member

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    Sorry, IMO I would support my local bicycle shop. You know, the one that has been there for over 50 years and will be there for the next 50, rather than sending my money to a stranger in another country. JEEEEEEZ!!!!!!!

    Scuba Steve
     
  8. eric_the_red

    eric_the_red New Member

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  9. stevek

    stevek New Member

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    I get good deals on parts. like a new sram chain about 1/2 off. and a few otehr things. but if it is a great deal begin to wonder as ebay does not always have great deals on bike stuff. if it is modern stuff then the prices are usualy higher then you wnat to pay when you figure in shipping.
     
  10. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    I like to support my LBS also, since being able to see and discuss what I'm buying means a lot to me. For tires, tubes, chains, cables, lube small tools, shoes, ...and repair service, it's great to have them nearby.

    The prices on many items are the same retail that Performance, Nashbar usually charge, or close enough. They have closeouts too...just like the online stores. I got my Carnac shoes last year for 1/2 off at an LBS...and got to try them on and take them home with me.

    But don't assume that the LBS "will be there for the next 50". If us riders don't support them, they will disappear. Maybe I'm impatient, but I really don't want to order a $3.95 shift cable online, pay shipping, and wait for it to arrive.....and hoping they sent the right one.
     
  11. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    I like to support my LBS also, since being able to see and discuss what I'm buying means a lot to me. For tires, tubes, chains, cables, lube small tools, shoes, ...and repair service, it's great to have them nearby.

    The prices on many items are the same retail that Performance, Nashbar usually charge, or close enough. They have closeouts too...just like the online stores. I got my Carnac shoes last year for 1/2 off at an LBS...and got to try them on and take them home with me.

    But don't assume that the LBS "will be there for the next 50". If us riders don't support them, they will disappear. Maybe I'm impatient, but I really don't want to order a $3.95 shift cable online, pay shipping, and wait for it to arrive.....hoping they sent the right one.
     
  12. Celica

    Celica New Member

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    I use ebay all the time. Last winter I put together a lovely Colnago by purchasing the frame and dura ace components, bit by bit, over a 6 month period. Got some great deals too, compared to the prices we pay in Canada for components.
     
  13. fabiosav

    fabiosav New Member

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    WATCH OUT, but you can do it... (I did, sort of). I was set to bid on a bike in spain, but it was just too odd. Watch for the guys who only take "western union" and refuse escrow. This guy was a total scam. Had a great bike in a bunch of sizes. Way low price. I asked for escrow and he said no way, so I bagged it, but not before having fun: offered him his ask PLUS 20% if he would let me see the bike. NO reply, and I offered his ask +50%, and still no go. ALL BS. There was no bike, and ebay pulled him. That said I just bought a new bike from one of the on-line stores (leader bike) and they were great. Guy named Sal could not have been better. I would look at the other "stores" as well: lightspeed has an "outlet" on ebay, as do others.
    DON'T send money direct
    Don't think Paypal will protect you
    Do use escrow,
    and if they are close...LBS all the way.
     
  14. cyclist_nc

    cyclist_nc New Member

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    I agree with johntp. I have had very good results on ebay but I ask lots of questions and I am very cautious. I believe that the majority of the ebay users are legitimate but there is a always a percentage of the population doing bad things. Don't bid if any of the following are true: negative feedback; no picture; no response to email; too good to be true. You have little recourse from fraud so be cautious. I always ask the seller questions just to see if they will respond. No response means no bid. Personally, I wouldn't be willing to send a lot of money overseas on a chance for a good deal. It is hard enough to pursue fraud in this country and impossible to pursue it overseas. Again, my experiences with ebay have been very good and will continue to use it with caution.
     
  15. fabiosav

    fabiosav New Member

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    SAMPLE 110% certain scam below. This was the email I got from a guy selling an Orbea bike. The guy didn't put the frame size on to troll for suckers. I asked "what size" and this is the reply. EVERYTHING he asks for screams "scam". (p.s. he did find a buyer, I warned him, and wish him luck)

    happy reading. amazing stuff...

    p.s. bike is still posted as of today. URL below.

    Hi,
    The bike size is 54cm(medium)C-T.If you are intrested in another size of the bike please tell me and I will call my source to see if your option is available for sale.I live in Italy and here I find it a great source of the bikes.The bike what I'm selling is brand new, factory sealed with ALL the accesories.It will come with waranty fully transferable to your name and with the receipt from the authorized dealer so you can use the warranty at every authorized service center with no problem.
    I used and I use for shipping the big concern UPS but if you want you can choose another mail carrier it's not a problem that. If you will choose UPS, it usually takes 48 hours until the bike is delivered. I will cover the shipping and insurance costs and I usualy send all of my packages with a label that says either "display unit, no commercial value" or describes the contents of the package as a gift so that you don't have to pay any additional taxes,it's with VAT included.
    About the payment I have more than 3 years of experience in these business and I have closed a lot of sucessful deals you can check my feedback on e-bay for you can be sure about that. In all this period I learned that the best deals are closed when the risk is minimized for the both the seller and buyer. As a result, I have developed a system that can work to this goal. You will have to do the money transfer through Western Union to my location but not into my name. Instead, you can use any name you want,your best friends name for example, as receiver's name so you can be sure that I will not pick up the money until you receive the bike. Once you have made the deposit at Western Union, you will notify me of the transfer details(sender's name and receiver's name) so that I can call at Western Union office to check that if the transaction is valid and if it's so, I will then immediately send you the bike and email you the tracking number from UPS. When you receive the bike and verify its quality, you will then change the transfer to my name so that I can collect the payment. My old buyers made the transfer at Western Union direct to my name, which is easier and I will be happy if you can trust me and make the transfer with my details, but because this would be our first deal, I am proposing this very safe and efficient method.
    Return policy: In case you change your mind after receiving the package and want to cancel the order, you can ship it back to me and retrieve the money from Western Union. Also, in case the delivery does not arrive on time, please email me and I'll contact the mail carrier.
    Very important! When you'll make the transfer, do NOT tell to Western Union that you are makeing a payment for a purchase, because they will charge us both. When you will change the receiver name into mine so I can get the money I will not receive the same amount you are sending, and I already support the shipping and insurance costs. Better tell them that you are sending the money for a relative of yours.
    I hope you will agree this procedure and I wait your answer asap.
    I hope that we will close the business as soon as possible.
    Best Regards!

    Nick



    In a message dated 1/10/2004 11:57:15 PM Eastern Standard Time, fabiosav writes:

    >
    >
    > what is the size???
    > --------------------
    >
    >
    > Question from: fabiosav
    > Title of item: 2003 Orbea Lobular Carbon
    > Seller: kechsa0531
    > Starts: Jan-08-04 08:59:12 PST
    > Ends: Jan-11-04 08:59:12 PST
    > Price: Currently $1,300.00
    > To view the item, go to: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3652555388
    >


    Hi,
    The bike size is 54cm(medium)C-T.If you are intrested in another size of the bike please tell me and I will call my source to see if your option is available for sale.I live in Italy and here I find it a great source of the bikes.The bike what I'm selling is brand new, factory sealed with ALL the accesories.It will come with waranty fully transferable to your name and with the receipt from the authorized dealer so you can use the warranty at every authorized service center with no problem.
    I used and I use for shipping the big concern UPS but if you want you can choose another mail carrier it's not a problem that. If you will choose UPS, it usually takes 48 hours until the bike is delivered. I will cover the shipping and insurance costs and I usualy send all of my packages with a label that says either "display unit, no commercial value" or describes the contents of the package as a gift so that you don't have to pay any additional taxes,it's with VAT included.
    About the payment I have more than 3 years of experience in these business and I have closed a lot of sucessful deals you can check my feedback on e-bay for you can be sure about that. In all this period I learned that the best deals are closed when the risk is minimized for the both the seller and buyer. As a result, I have developed a system that can work to this goal. You will have to do the money transfer through Western Union to my location but not into my name. Instead, you can use any name you want,your best friends name for example, as receiver's name so you can be sure that I will not pick up the money until you receive the bike. Once you have made the deposit at Western Union, you will notify me of the transfer details(sender's name and receiver's name) so that I can call at Western Union office to check that if the transaction is valid and if it's so, I will then immediately send you the bike and email you the tracking number from UPS. When you receive the bike and verify its quality, you will then change the transfer to my name so that I can collect the payment. My old buyers made the transfer at Western Union direct to my name, which is easier and I will be happy if you can trust me and make the transfer with my details, but because this would be our first deal, I am proposing this very safe and efficient method.
    Return policy: In case you change your mind after receiving the package and want to cancel the order, you can ship it back to me and retrieve the money from Western Union. Also, in case the delivery does not arrive on time, please email me and I'll contact the mail carrier.
    Very important! When you'll make the transfer, do NOT tell to Western Union that you are makeing a payment for a purchase, because they will charge us both. When you will change the receiver name into mine so I can get the money I will not receive the same amount you are sending, and I already support the shipping and insurance costs. Better tell them that you are sending the money for a relative of yours.
    I hope you will agree this procedure and I wait your answer asap.
    I hope that we will close the business as soon as possible.
    Best Regards!

    Nick



    In a message dated 1/10/2004 11:57:15 PM Eastern Standard Time, fabiosav writes:

    >
    >
    > what is the size???
    > --------------------
    >
    >
    > Question from: fabiosav
    > Title of item: 2003 Orbea Lobular Carbon
    > Seller: kechsa0531
    > Starts: Jan-08-04 08:59:12 PST
    > Ends: Jan-11-04 08:59:12 PST
    > Price: Currently $1,300.00
    > To view the item, go to: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3652555388
    >
     
  16. cyclist_nc

    cyclist_nc New Member

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    This is a clear example of fraud. Unforunately, some will still send (and lose) money because they are willing to take the risk that this is possibly legitimate.
     
  17. Eric Bennett

    Eric Bennett New Member

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    I've had nothing but good experiences on E-bay. I bought my Merckx Team SC with Ultegra from a bike mechanic on E-bay for $1,600. I could not have bought anything comparable from my local bike shop for anywhere near that price. My only caution is to shop ahead to make sure you know exactly what you want -- frame size, group etc. Good Luck!
     
  18. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    That does sound like a great price, depending on the condition of the bike. Assume it was used, no warranty, but in good shape?
     
  19. Jcn

    Jcn New Member

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  20. BigE

    BigE New Member

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    I have bought and sold a fair bit on ebay and have had problems a few times, once buying and twice selling. I alsolike to support the LBS's (and I even get pretty good deals since I used to manage one of them) but I like ebay for the choices that aren't available at the LBS.
    The main thing is ask questions, if you don't get an answer or things seem fishy then don't buy it simple as that! I try answering emails within 24 hrs and usually get replys to my questions in that time frame from others.
    As always, buyer beware!
    And as a note to buyers, Don't bid if you don't want it!
     
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