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What's the WORST bike that dares to call itself a bicycle?

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What's the WORST bike that dares to call itself a bicycle?

Old 07-02-09, 05:50 PM
  #26  
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---Huffy:
Not the worst - if you take some of their cheap frames and make singlespeed, coasterbrake bikes out of them, they're decent---

I guess with Roadmasters and Magnas, if you removed the wheels and melt down the cheap metal, they might make a decent paperweight or boat anchor.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:10 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Ronsonic View Post
I've marveled at the ingenuity required to take a piece of sheet metal and stamp it and contort it into a stem. It doesn't work, but it is clever in an origami sort of way.
The sheet metal origami stem on my 1970's Schwinn Speedster has been working just fine for about 35 years.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:13 PM
  #28  
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I remember a bike called "Savoy" when I was a kid. Real piece of shnit.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:25 PM
  #29  
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That's a hard one... I'd have to say the cheap full suspension Wal-mart bikes. I ended up getting back the one I had when I was younger, made by MGX/Mongoose. I figured it wasn't really worth fixing up, but there were a few random suprises. Had some very strong linear pull brakes, alloy rims, SRAM Gripshifters and derailers. Once I stripped everything worth keeping, I was pretty much left with a frame, it weighed about as much as one of my other complete bikes. However, the cheaper ones made by Next and whatever don't even have components that work well.

The old Huffy's, Free Spirits, whatever are kind of a mixed bag. My dad bought a Rigid Huffy MTB from a garage sale, with a few adjustments it worked great, and I ended up with it after he upgraded to a new Diamondback. I used it was a winter bike, and I sold it to my neighbors. I also saw the womens version, this one had no-name components instead of Shimano ones, I thought the levers would rather break than make the bike shift. At least the frame could make an ok singlespeed, unlike the Full suspension things.

I've also had a few road bikes by them. Free Spirit had no name components with shifters that felt like they could easily break, but somehow it worked great. I attempted to loosen the bolt holding down the cable on the rear derailer so I could switch to some decent Suntour Shifters, but it was stripped, and attached with rivets in a way that you really couldn't get any leverage on it without breaking something. I decided to sell it as is to someone who needed a bike for a few weeks. Also had a Huffy Scout, again had no-name components, but they were nicely made and worked well. I don't think I would have much of a problem using it.

One of my friends has a rigid Magna MTB. I have no idea how he can stand to use the thing... Brakes do almost nothing (Even with me attempting to fix them), both shifters are broken, handlebar is bent, and so on. I've offered to sell him a better bike a few times, and he isn't really interested...
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Old 07-02-09, 08:00 PM
  #30  
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Ooh, ooh, I have a good one. This is not the worst bike, but it lived among them. It was a Polish made child's bike with, I think, 16" wheels. The dropouts sloped the wrong way, so when you stood the bike up and went to tighten the axle nuts, the wheel would move forward in the dropouts. My boss taught me the ONLY way to put the wheel in.

OK, now picture this carefully.

Sit on the ground behind the bike. Your tush must be on the ground firmly.

Put both feet on pedals.

With one hand, pull the bike backwards, towards you.

With the other hand, tighten the axle nut.

Switch hands and repeat.

Oy.
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Old 07-02-09, 08:14 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by BLACK BIKE View Post
The sheet metal origami stem on my 1970's Schwinn Speedster has been working just fine for about 35 years.
Rock on. Good on them and you. They seem to have lost the skill or at least the cheap bikes that still use that technology don't bother. Amazing what you can make with a punch press and a small budget and some brains.
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Old 07-02-09, 08:16 PM
  #32  
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True! Sometimes, good doesn't have to mean expensive.
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Old 07-02-09, 09:54 PM
  #33  
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LMAO from the picture of the diet dr pepper bike!!!! Where do you find that pic!?
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Old 07-02-09, 10:59 PM
  #34  
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Another C. Itoh vote. Those things they made in the 70s were horrible.
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Old 07-03-09, 07:09 AM
  #35  
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I had a 3 speed Free Spirit which held up and worked well. The lugged frame was fine. If they hadn't come in so many varieties, I would say they don't belong on this thread.

I had a Murray 3 speed which seemed to have a solid cast iron frame. It rode very stiffly and gave the impression that the lack of give and the extreme mass was going to make something break. I sold it. It just wasn't as pleasant as the Free Spirit, which I wish I still had.

There was also this department store-branded 3 speed on which you could feel every tooth in the hub grind into engagement. It had a "butt-brazed" frame apparently: Notch the thick, thick gaspipes, butt them against one another, and braze. Like fillet brazing without the fillet. I separated the seat tube from the bottom bracket with some fairly casual riding.

I saw one of the $49.95 MTBs in a big box store which had an Ashtabula crank which had cracked clean through the pedal threads!!!! Apparently it had been returned. It didn't look old or abused otherwise. Those low, low end machines are just dangerous.

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Old 07-03-09, 08:53 AM
  #36  
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I saw one of the $49.95 MTBs in a big box store which had an Ashtabula crank which had cracked through the pedal threads!!!! Apparently it had been returned. Those low, low end machines are just dangerous.



Is this one of them? I posted this on the MTB thread as I never remember seeing a Murry MTB this old before.

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Old 07-03-09, 09:14 AM
  #37  
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The FIRENZE.... the bane of Bay Area bike shops in the 80s.
.
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Old 07-03-09, 09:20 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by soonerbills View Post

I saw one of the $49.95 MTBs in a big box store which had an Ashtabula crank which had cracked through the pedal threads!!!! Apparently it had been returned. Those low, low end machines are just dangerous.



Is this one of them? I posted this on the MTB thread as I never remember seeing a Murry MTB this old before.
No. It was a recent Chinese import. That Murray looks pretty sturdy.

The crank design on the one I saw looked about the same as all the other Ashtabulas, but when you're bidding for the bottom, apparently, the materials and process control can be shoddy.
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Old 07-03-09, 09:39 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by dgodave View Post
The FIRENZE.... the bane of Bay Area bike shops in the 80s.
.
I remember those. "Crazy TV Lenny" gave away hundreds of those "free with every TV purchase" in Madison back in the late 70s. One year he got dinged because the brakes didn't meet CPSC requirements, so he hired a bunch of teenagers to replace the stock brake pads with Mathauser pads to bring the performance up to spec.
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Old 07-03-09, 10:59 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
I remember those. "Crazy TV Lenny" gave away hundreds of those "free with every TV purchase" in Madison back in the late 70s. One year he got dinged because the brakes didn't meet CPSC requirements, so he hired a bunch of teenagers to replace the stock brake pads with Mathauser pads to bring the performance up to spec.
They gave them away with any stereo or TV purchase at Matthews (top of the hill Daly City, lest we forget).We used to get dozens of people hauling them to the shop asking us to make them work.
.
Probly no more crappy than the other bikes mentioned here, but my personal revulsion makes them the least collectible bike.
.
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Old 07-03-09, 11:31 AM
  #41  
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I doubt it beats the Itera or the early Korean bikes in poor reliability, but for ugliness, it's hard to beat the Baubike:
http://www.baubike.dk/
http://www.thecoolhunter.net/article...l/1559/baubike
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Old 07-03-09, 12:00 PM
  #42  
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The cheap "Made in America" bikes sold at K-Mart in the 1960's and 1970's were very crudely made, yet many of them are still around, and many of them are still on the road. They were much more durable than they look.

In contrast, the $50 and $75 communist Chinese bikes sold at K-Mart and Wal-Mart today are dangerous from "Day One". The brake calipers are of very poor quality, and are seldom assembled and installed correctly. Industry "experts" say that studies show that in its LIFETIME, a $50 Wal-Mart bike is actually used for LESS than 50 miles of riding...total. As a result, the very worst possible bearings are used for the bottom bracket, wheel hubs, and headset.

I looked at a $200 bike being currently sold at Target. A good bike tech could re-assemble that bike into a bike that would provide several years of "around the neighborhood" riding...not a bad bike at all.

Of course, the Schwinn one-speed beach cruisers of 1950 were built to provide fifty or sixty years of hard riding...but no company today wants to build fifty pound "tanks" built to last forever...no profit in that.
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Old 07-03-09, 12:07 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by lazysod View Post
I doubt it beats the Itera or the early Korean bikes in poor reliability, but for ugliness, it's hard to beat the Baubike:
http://www.baubike.dk/
http://www.thecoolhunter.net/article...l/1559/baubike
Ugliness and ******** pretension in the "about" section. I almost puked.
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Old 07-03-09, 12:30 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by FLYcrash View Post
What about the Magna?
+1, They're the worst IMHO. I say this because Magnas, up until about two years ago, all had these awful cantilever brakes that, at best, only slowed the bike down, at worst, did almost nothing. I always look at the safety aspect when evaluating a low end bike. A bike that can't get going, is safe because it useless. A bike that can move, even reach some decent speed, but has horrible brakes is worse, and Magna wins that dubious distinction every time.

After that, I'd say Murray road bikes with those awful, chrome 26 inch wheels and simulated brakes.

I'm going to disagree with putting Huffy and Next in the same catagory as the M&M gang (Magna and Murray). Next because the examples I've come across all had really decent components like SRAM and Shimano. I actually have a set of V brakes from a Next MTB on one of my Nishikis because they were better than the Shimano cantilevers the Nishiki came with.
Huffy made some real crap, but they also made some decent, entry level road bikes and mountain bikes. Some were sold by LBSs. I know a guy that only rides Huffys and has taken his bikes on Century road rides.
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Old 07-03-09, 12:49 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by roccobike View Post
Next because the examples I've come across all had really decent components like SRAM and Shimano.
You don't have enough experience.



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Old 07-03-09, 02:31 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by Dan Burkhart View Post
If IKEA sold a bicycle, I have to think it would look just like that.
Actually, IKEA uses the high-quality Velorbis bicycles
http://www.velorbis.com/press-room/c...s-to-IKEA.html
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Old 07-03-09, 04:04 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by lazysod View Post
I doubt it beats the Itera or the early Korean bikes in poor reliability, but for ugliness, it's hard to beat the Baubike:
http://www.baubike.dk/
http://www.thecoolhunter.net/article...l/1559/baubike
I actually like the look. Great for cruising the boardwalk & barcycling. This snippet from the "About" section gave me pause:

......"stepping away from the traditional function-oriented approach to the design process"......

In other words, they are admiting it's a looks first, functionality second piece. Still hard to beat the 100+ year old double-triangle frame.
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Old 07-03-09, 09:00 PM
  #48  
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Anybody mention 1970s Kia Sports bikes? How about Iversons? Quite a few of the Columbia bikes from 1970s. Also, most any bike that used a cheap sticker as a headbadge in the 1970s! That was almost a sure sign that you were getting a low-end bike. Power Kings from E.J. Korvettes were also junk, and I think they had a sticker for a headbadge. Somebody could probably compile a list of C&V bikes to avoid similar to the used cars to avoid list in the Consumer Reports Buyers Guides. Just because it was made along time ago doesn't mean it was made well.
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Old 05-18-19, 09:39 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by thompsonpost View Post
Ironman bikes are pretty bad, AMF was mentioned, those are death on wheels, incognito, anything from Target, all WalMart bikes. I used to build for Huffy at Target and WalMart. I quit because of the creeping guilt after every bike I put together. I couldn't dismiss the images of little kids falling and hurting themselves. Those bikes were so hard to build. Nothing would fit properly even though the parts came from the same box the frame was in.

That's enough from me.
I had that job for just a little bit also. Really couldn't make much money doing it unless you just slapped them together as quick as possible with no regard to it being done right which I'm sure made crappy bikes even worse in most cases. I tried to make them as good as possible at least. I did wind up with good tools from the job though.
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Old 05-18-19, 10:41 PM
  #50  
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Is it just me or is it hypocritical to complain about people 'staring down' on our steel bikes but yet here we are doing it to others.

Just my opinion.
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