Is this a bargain I shouldn't pass up?

Discussion in 'Bike buying advice' started by inkieminstrel, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. inkieminstrel

    inkieminstrel New Member

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  2. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    It's good enough ... at a fair price (much better than you'd get at your LBS).

    Basically you're getting the frame-and-fork for almost/close-to free when compared with what your local bike shop would charge for just a 10-speed Shimano 105 group/etc., even after subsituting the Tektro brakes for the 105 brakes AND the TruVativ crank for a Shimano 105 crank -- the non-Shimano compnents are quality stuff, nonetheless.

    So, the reason NOT to buy it is if you were looking for a bike with Campagnolo shifters (which, I think are better in SOME CIRCUMSTANCES) ...

    You may find SOME comparables from a few sellers on eBay who specialize in sellng drop-shipped bikes ...

    At this point, if you've got the money, I would let FATE be your guide ... if you go to place the order with Performance AND they have your size, then get the bike.

    If Performance doesn't have your size, then take it as a sign!?!
     
  3. inkieminstrel

    inkieminstrel New Member

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    Thanks for the response. My question, then, is are deals like this common to see? If I decide I want a comparable bike 6 months from now, will I be able to find one?
     
  4. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    Eenie, Meenie, Chilli-beanie ... the spirits are about to speak:

    Let's see ... 46% off?

    That's tough to beat ... BUT, check eBay for sellers like sprtymama OR the internet for sellers like www.Bikesdirect.com or www.bicyclebuys.com. I have not bought anything from the latter two, I bought something from sprtymama a long, long time ago when she was just starting (i.e., highly recommended) BUT I knew exactly what I was buying.

    ___​

    So, suppose that $1500 is indeed the retail price of the bike ... is THAT the bike you would buy if you had $1500 in your budget to spend on a new bike?

    Are the key components -- that is, one with Shimano 105 (5600) shifters + "compact" (50/36) crankset -- the ones which you were shopping for?

    Or, would you possibly be considering a bike with a Campagnolo group (e.g., Bianchi)?

    Or, a SRAM equipped bike?

    That is, had you been looking at bikes during the past few months? Had you already opted for Shimano 105 vs. Shimano Ultegra (better) or Shimano Tiagra/Sora (less expensive) components, already?

    Were you already thinking about a bike with an aluminum frame which had carbon stays? Would you prefer a bike which can have fenders mounted to use for commuting?

    It's December 7th, today ... so, 6 months from now will be June 7th -- the tail end of the height of the bicycle buying period ... bikes generally go on sale (at local bike shops) between the middle of July and the middle of November.

    Regardless of what the wholesale price of a bike is for the retailer, 54% of retail will be tough to beat short of an over-stock liquidation (which this pricing approaches).

    Think Straw hats in December, my friend.

    From a retailer's point of view, the calendar year often coincides with the end of the fiscal year; so, the likelihood of a better price in February is low unless it is a matter of clearing inventory to make room for more 2007 "stuff." That is, February probably marks the beginning of the high-period for bike shops and that revenue period extends until mid-July ... if the bike shop senses a pending surge in demand, they might try to move the remaining 2006-and-older stuff off the floor sooner-rather-than-later to make room for at-retail sales of 2007 bikes.

    Shimano is NOT changing their road components for 2007.

    Performance may not be carrying those bikes (or, that model, in particular) next year, so you have to think of this as a liquidation sale UNLESS you have access to their North Carolina shop (which I presume still exists) and were to buy the bike as a showroom floor model.

    So, if the REAL question revolves around whether or not you will have buyer's remorse because you want better components (Ultegra) or different components (Campagnolo or SRAM) ... well, you shouldn't let that worry you even though MY recommendation would be for a bike with Campagnolo components ...

    Irrelevant, but important to know ... I "love" Shimano components AND I think Shimano USA is very responsive to direct consumer contact BUT have read numerous instances where bike shop personnel have had less than satisfactory interaction ... on the other hand, my few attempts to interact with SRAM have been unresponded to, but supposedly shop people "love" SRAM.

    Years of sporadic interaction with various local bike shops have proven to me [and, your experience(s) may differ] I am better off being self-sufficient rather than relying on my local bike shop ... any of my local bike shops. At this point in time, the ONLY maintenance I would go to a local bike shop for is to have additional threads added to a threaded fork (how often is THAT going to happen?) OR possibly to have BB shell faced (!?!) ... and, I'm not even sure about that I wouldn't trust my manual skills with a flat file if I felt my BB shell needed to be faced over the workmanship I've seen come out of some of the shops I've been in!

    Are you mechanically inclined OR a complete klutz? Will you be relying on a local bike shop NEAR YOU for maintenance OR will you be capable of assembling & tweaking the bikes components?

    Buying a bike from a shop is NO GUARANTEE of better customer service based on my observation of my friends who bring their high-zoot bikes back to the shop from which their bikes were bought.

    FINALLY, to abbreviate the list considerations you should take into account:

    Are you draft eligible?

    No kidding.​

    So, the price is good ... ​

    But, I could/would cobble together a bike that I would prefer to ride for that kind of money, but it would be an assemblage of used components and a used frame.​

    The odds are that (excluding the other sellers I mentioned) the only way you'll find a comparable bike at a comparable price 6 months from now may be if you were to buy it USED from someone who buys THAT bike in the next few weeks while it is available at that sale price who then decides s/he wants something else.​

    I suspect that you MAY be able to buy a comparable bike at ANY time from one of the other three vendors (sprtymama, bikesdirect.com, or bicyclebuys.com who may-or-may-not be what you're looking for) mentioned. BUT, if the Iron Horse Excelsior has everything that was on your shopping list & falls within your budget, then I wouldn't spend a lot of time looking further since Performance may only have one more bike in your size to sell (OR, they may have 100!).

    Otherwise, depending on where you are shopping, anticipate needing to wait another 12 months to get a comparable bike at a comparable price from a comparable retailer ...​

    Sorry to be so conditional about the recommendation ... the bike isn't a high ticket item like a house or a car, but it is something that can/should be approached beyond looking at the price-alone.​
     
  5. inkieminstrel

    inkieminstrel New Member

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    Thanks for all the advice. I ended up buying the bike tonight from a local Performance store (they ordered it for me, so free shipping). With no shipping costs and different tax, it came down to about $675, but adding a $20 membership card got me a $67 store credit. They have a 30 day return policy and a lifetime free adjustment policy, so I'm one happy camper. Pretty awesome for essentially full 105 gear.
     
  6. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    Great! THE STARS WERE IN ALIGNMENT FOR YOU!

    Since the bike is MORE THAN an entry level bike, it should last longer than you probably will want it to! At some point, down the road, if you keep riding, you'll probably have a hankerin' for a nicer bike, but it will be pretty tough to justify if you are realistic about how nice a bike the one you are getting should be ...

    HMMmm. Campagnolo shifters/drivetrain would be nice ...
     
  7. seriouslysilly

    seriouslysilly New Member

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    that's great you found your size for that bike.
    hope you enjoy that purchase for a long time :)
     
  8. melslur

    melslur New Member

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    How do you like it?
     
  9. inkieminstrel

    inkieminstrel New Member

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    I like it a lot. I was going from a second-hand 6+ year old mountain bike that hadn't been cared for to a nice new road bike, so the fun factor went way up.

    It had a problem where one of the derailleur cables somehow got stripped within the first week or two of riding it, but I took it into a Performance shop and they fixed it quickly with no hassle. That particular shop has really nice employees, so I'm also glad this experience led me to it.

    I can't wait for warmer weather and more daylight.
     
  10. roadcyclist

    roadcyclist New Member

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    A much better deal:

    http://pricepoint.com/detail/14356-018_VINRB5-3-Parts-47-Bikes/Vincolo-Road-Bike-Ultegra-10-Speed.htm

    The deal at performance will come up again!



     
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