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Top Tips: Purchasing A Second-hand Bike

Many participants who come along to an AustCycle course do so on the bike of a friend or relative to see if cycling is something they want to continue further, while some don't even have a bike at all.

Buying a new bike may not be financially possible for new riders, and the idea that they need to spend a large amount of money doing so can put them off continuing to cycle after their AustCycle lessons are over.

Thankfully, quality secondhand bikes are widely available for purchase, and often for a fraction of the original purchase price.

If you have a rider who is asking for tips for choosing a secondhand bike, consider the ones below:

Think about what type of riding you will doing. If you're mainly going to be riding to the shops or around your neighbourhood than a vintage-style, slightly heavier bike is fine. But, if your plan is to commute to work, then you will need something lighter and faster.

Make sure you choose the right size. Ensuring that you don't get a bike that is too big or too small is vital. Regardless of why or where you will be cycling, your position on the bike is crucial for cycling comfort, enjoyment and performance.

Check for faults. When buying a secondhand bike look for worn or dried-out brake pads and also look for cracked or bent brake levers. Check to make sure the frame isn't dented or cracked and look to see if there is any rust present. Remember, a bike that needs a lot of work can end up being more expensive in the long run.

Consider visiting a bike shop. Bike shops often sell secondhand bikes and this is often the best option for first-time riders as shop assistants are trained to help with any questions or queries. Buying from a reputable shop is also a lot safer than purchasing blindly off eBay or Gumtree as you get to see and test the bike before you purchase.