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College Cruiser

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College Cruiser

Old 01-14-18, 12:38 AM
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woodybr
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College Cruiser

Hi all,

I'm currently a graduate student in the US, but originally from Brazil. I really enjoy beach cruisers for their design but mostly their comfort and I wanted to get one for myself. I would love some advice!

I would use it mostly to get to and from class, a nice ride by the beach (the campus is on the beach, mostly flat and really bike friendly) and to go grocery shopping.

Now, my current problem - as always - is budget. I'm only guaranteed to be here for 2 years - the duration of my Master's. After that, I will either go back home or move somewhere else for work. As I don't own a car and would probably move by plane, I would probably need to sell the bike closer to the end. Accounting for the difficulty and effort to sell, I'd prefer not to spend too much on the bike. A $200-$300 range would be my max.

So, what I'm looking for is a new (I haven't been able to find anything worthwhile at the local cl) men's beach cruiser, with a few speeds (I have to overcome hills once in a while) and handbrakes (I'm really not the best with coaster brakes).

I've seen the Electra Townie recommended over and over, but it is unfortunately way over my budget (any model above the base 1-speed).

I feel like I have three choices: buying at the local campus bike shops - already assembled bikes, usually grossly overpriced for what I've seen; buying a bike online and assembling myself; buying a bike online and having it professionally assembled (bike+shipping+assembly would still need to be within the 200-300 range).

With that in mind, there are a couple of bikes that have caught my interest. I'd love to hear your opinion on those as well as suggestions of bikes that might fit my needs/constraints.

The Mango Macaw 7
Save up to 60% OFF Mango Macaw 1 Speed Cruisers from bikesdirect.com

The sixthreezero Around The Block
https://www.amazon.com/sixthreezero-...911748&sr=1-14

Thanks for any info and have a great year!
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Old 01-14-18, 07:36 AM
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Go for the Mango. I had a Mango Key Largo and loved it.
I don't know anything specific about the Amazon cruiser, but Amazon bikes are usually the same low quality you can get at Walmart.
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Old 01-14-18, 11:37 AM
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The Sixthreezero frame is steel and a somewhat more traditional looking cantilever design.

The Mango is aluminum and has a non traditional single large diameter top tube.

They appear to be of equal quality, so it comes down to aesthetics and ride quality.

If you have a bike shop assemble it, make sure they open things up and inspect for adequate grease.
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Old 01-14-18, 09:32 PM
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Thanks for all the info, guys! It's been a mix of opinions on the bikes I posted and suggestions of other bikes - just what I needed! I'll stick around while I haven't finalized my decision in case there are more people willing to weigh in.

Originally Posted by jimmie65 View Post
Go for the Mango. I had a Mango Key Largo and loved it.
I don't know anything specific about the Amazon cruiser, but Amazon bikes are usually the same low quality you can get at Walmart.
Thanks, I hadn't found much info about it. It's reassuring!

Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
The Sixthreezero frame is steel and a somewhat more traditional looking cantilever design.

The Mango is aluminum and has a non traditional single large diameter top tube.

They appear to be of equal quality, so it comes down to aesthetics and ride quality.

If you have a bike shop assemble it, make sure they open things up and inspect for adequate grease.
I'll check with the local bike shop for the cost of assembly. Thanks!

Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
As SP said, they are both good bikes, provided they are assembled correctly.
My question is about your weight. Aluminum is an unforgiving material, uncompromisingly stiff.
Steel is much more forgiving, a softer feel if you will. It flexes where aluminum doesn't.
Are you a bigger person? Choose the aluminum, you will appreciate the stiffness.
Are you smaller? Like 165 or less? Think about the steel frame.
I'm 5'9" and 154 lbs.

Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Going to throw in something I've been thinking.
Check out the men's Schwinn Midway at Walmart.
It's of a similar quality to those other two, and it's cheap enough where you'd not lose so much when you sold it.
Take the box to a bike shop and have a complete tune up done (braking and shifting adjustment, lube, assembly.
Buy the Walmart warranty that covers EVERYTHING, and if it breaks, take it back.
You're still saving money.
Sounds great, I'll take a look. I saw it at $150 at their website but comments said they found it a lot cheaper in stores. Unfortunately, my city doesn't have a Walmart(only a small, overpriced kmart) and, since I don't own a car, I'd have to stick with the online order.
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Old 01-14-18, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Then whatever bike you order finally, make a deal with whatever LBS is willing to assemble, adjust, and lube, to ship to their location as well.
That way all you do is pick it up and go.
Don't feel weird about it, Bike shops don't make a lot of profit on sales of new bikes. Labor however, is a cash cow.
This sounds like a really great idea!

BTW, I looked at sixthreezero's website and I really liked them as a company. They have customization options, are based here in California and have this interesting testing policy.
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Old 01-16-18, 01:16 AM
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Should I add fenders? It doesn't rain very often here, but I'd still rather have them than not.


Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
The Sixthreezero frame is steel and a somewhat more traditional looking cantilever design.
Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
As SP said, they are both good bikes, provided they are assembled correctly.
I just now realized that Sixthreezero and Firmstrong are basically the same company. This will help me in finding resources about it.
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Old 01-16-18, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by woodybr View Post
Should I add fenders? It doesn't rain very often here, but I'd still rather have them than not.
I'm not the right guy to ask about fenders. Or chain guards. Or reflectors. Or lights. Or hand brakes. Or derailleurs.


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Old 01-16-18, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by woodybr View Post
Should I add fenders? It doesn't rain very often here, but I'd still rather have them than not.
If you want fenders, go for it.
All my bikes have fenders. I think it makes them look more complete, and I don't like getting "skunk stripes".
I'm not a racer, so the little weight they add is not a big deal.
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Old 01-16-18, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
I'm not the right guy to ask about fenders. Or chain guards. Or reflectors. Or lights. Or hand brakes. Or derailleurs.


Got it!
Originally Posted by bicyclridr4life View Post
If you want fenders, go for it.
All my bikes have fenders. I think it makes them look more complete, and I don't like getting "skunk stripes".
I'm not a racer, so the little weight they add is not a big deal.
Alright, I guess I'll stick with them. I'm not in a hurry either. This will be used for 15-min rides from/to classes and then leisure rides by the beach during the weekends. Cruisers are already hated here on campus, so a little slower won't matter much
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Old 01-17-18, 01:09 AM
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I also found this on CL: https://santabarbara.craigslist.org/...426627544.html
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Old 01-17-18, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by woodybr View Post
Snag it quickly.
Not only is that a great bike, but you'll be able to sell it in 2 years for the same price.
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Old 01-17-18, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
That's a pretty good deal. I'd be all over it.
Originally Posted by jimmie65 View Post
Snag it quickly.
Not only is that a great bike, but you'll be able to sell it in 2 years for the same price.
I sent a message. Let's see if that's still available.
I've never seen a 5-speed Electra for sale, what model do you guys think that is?
Anything I should watch out for if I go check it out?
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Old 01-17-18, 12:49 PM
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It looks like a D7. Seller may have the speeds wrong.
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Old 01-17-18, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Matters not if it's a 5 or 7, but my guess is its a 7.
Its a screaming deal.
Originally Posted by jimmie65 View Post
It looks like a D7. Seller may have the speeds wrong.
Haha, got it, thanks!

I swear I'll stop quoting you guys after this one. What about this? https://www.bicyclebobs-sb.com/produ...d-209615-1.htm The 2018, black one.
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Old 01-17-18, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Same exact bike. Look at the derailer (Sheldon's new spelling) That puppy will only work on a 6-7-8.
So the bike being sold is the same.
Don't make a deal of it to the seller.
Got it! But in case I'm not able to snag that used one on Craigslist, you're saying that's it's not worth buying that new Electra 7D for 300?
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Old 01-17-18, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
That is strictly up to you. I'm not a derailer guy so it would not be for me.
Not to mention that low end electra is still low end.
It's worth 150 even to me, but 299, well, I'd be watching craigslist a little longer.
From the Craigslist guy:
"Iím not sure what he exact model but itís stock from about 5 years ago." So maybe a 2013 7D.

I also asked for any other issues besides the flat tire, to which he said "no issues". Since this is a beach town, I'm mostly worried by rust in these 5 years. I'll go check it out.
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Old 01-18-18, 02:14 AM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
That is strictly up to you. I'm not a derailer guy so it would not be for me.
Not to mention that low end electra is still low end.
It's worth 150 even to me, but 299, well, I'd be watching craigslist a little longer.
This that is not a Cruiser, just came up today. Listed as a Townie but it's probably a Loft 7D hybrid/city bike. Looks like a decent bike for a decent price (depending on condition) but I'm more concerned about comfort riding it. What I like about cruisers is the more comfortable upright riding position. Would I be able to have something similar with this bike?
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Old 01-18-18, 05:59 AM
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Originally Posted by woodybr View Post
This that is not a Cruiser, just came up today. Listed as a Townie but it's probably a Loft 7D hybrid/city bike. Looks like a decent bike for a decent price (depending on condition) but I'm more concerned about comfort riding it. What I like about cruisers is the more comfortable upright riding position. Would I be able to have something similar with this bike?
That looks like it would be very upright. However, frame size is going to be more important as you get away from the cruiser style. Make sure it fits you.
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Old 01-18-18, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmie65 View Post
That looks like it would be very upright. However, frame size is going to be more important as you get away from the cruiser style. Make sure it fits you.
Noted, thanks! Honestly, I haven't tried many bikes in my life and I don't exactly know what to expect. I will try to arrange to test it and see how it goes. Any input on price/negotiating?

Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
I have a city bike as well (MTB conversion), I spend the vast majority of my time on the bike with the bigger tires because the ride is better. However, there are times when I'll ride the bike with narrow tires.
I say buy them both, ride both and flip the one you decide isn't as good as the other.
I'm trying to save money and you're steering me in the opposite direction Now that you mentioned it, I admit that I am somehwat tempted. Since I was willing to spend up to $300, I could buy both within my original budget. Unfortunately, it's not very easy to sell bikes here... The 'for sale' groups are flush with (mostly really crappy) bikes from graduating/international students, which bike shops end up buying for next to nothing and flipping (they have all the time in the world). I guess I'll meet with both and see which one I like riding better. Any input on price/negotiating?
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Old 01-18-18, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by woodybr View Post
Noted, thanks! Honestly, I haven't tried many bikes in my life and I don't exactly know what to expect. I will try to arrange to test it and see how it goes. Any input on price/negotiating?
Like any negotiation, don't get too excited or happy about the bike. Make lots of conversation and "buddy" up to the seller. Then find something minor wrong with the bike, focus on that, and then offer a lower price. But don't insult the bike or seller; just make it seem like you'd be settling for less than you want if you buy the bike. Most sellers are listing bikes at higher than they expect to get.
But note sellers use similar tactics.
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Old 01-18-18, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by jimmie65 View Post
Like any negotiation, don't get too excited or happy about the bike. Make lots of conversation and "buddy" up to the seller. Then find something minor wrong with the bike, focus on that, and then offer a lower price. But don't insult the bike or seller; just make it seem like you'd be settling for less than you want if you buy the bike. Most sellers are listing bikes at higher than they expect to get.
But note sellers use similar tactics.
Thanks, will do that! He said:

"No issues on the bike
No rust
Itís a great bike
Rust minimal since itís always outdoors
Itís newer than 2015
Itís the loft model"

Not sure what to expect on rust (beach town, conflicting information) but it sounds like this could be the one
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Old 01-19-18, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
I have a city bike as well (MTB conversion), I spend the vast majority of my time on the bike with the bigger tires because the ride is better. However, there are times when I'll ride the bike with narrow tires.
I say buy them both, ride both and flip the one you decide isn't as good as the other.
Originally Posted by jimmie65 View Post
Like any negotiation, don't get too excited or happy about the bike. Make lots of conversation and "buddy" up to the seller. Then find something minor wrong with the bike, focus on that, and then offer a lower price. But don't insult the bike or seller; just make it seem like you'd be settling for less than you want if you buy the bike. Most sellers are listing bikes at higher than they expect to get.
But note sellers use similar tactics.
Just putting a lid on that story. I'm really curious and I ended up looking the seller up online and found out he was arrested for grand theft early last year. Such a shame, I had high hopes for this bike. Now I'll always be super suspicious of any good deals on craigslist...
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Old 01-19-18, 11:43 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
The seller of which bike? One bad apple doesn't spoil the crop.
Yes, you're right. The Loft. I asked for a serial number later and he stopped responding... The Cruiser is still in progress
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Old 01-27-18, 07:22 PM
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Final update:

Bought the first Electra Cruiser 7D for $140. It's in really nice shape, I'm pretty pleased with it. Thanks for all the help!
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Old 01-27-18, 10:05 PM
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Originally Posted by woodybr View Post
Final update:

Bought the first Electra Cruiser 7D for $140. It's in really nice shape, I'm pretty pleased with it. Thanks for all the help!
Congrats, thatís a good deal on a fine bike. During my college years even a short ride would clear the mind and increase mental acuity. That was a long time ago. Now I sometimes forget the route home.

Good luck with your studies!
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