PDA

View Full Version : "Next" brand bicycles from WalMart. Any good?



winchman
08-30-2006, 12:08 AM
I'm considering buying a bicycle for riding around the neighborhood. I need something with three or maybe five speeds. I've looked at the local second-hand stores and some yard sales, but haven't seen anything that doesn't need a bit of work. The local WM has several models of "Next" bicycles with aluminum frames that look reasonably good for around $100. I know deep down that they are probably Chinese junk, but I'm trying to be optimistic. If anyone knows how to build bicycles, the Chinese should. :D

Has anyone here had any experience with them?

Roger

Forrest Addy
08-30-2006, 02:17 AM
WalMart is making a profit on a $100 bicycle they import from China and you have to ask if they're any good?

Buy one and let us know.

grannygear
08-30-2006, 02:34 AM
Yes, the Chinese do have a lot of bikes. Lots and lots of bikes. They sure do have a lot of bikes everywhere....

Only trouble is, no one knows how to ride them, and the basic Chinese bicycle is without a doubt the most sorry and pathetic excuse for a machine that every reared its rusty head from a scrap heap.

I had a friend who bought a brand-spanking new Grand Dragon bicycle from the shop. A design straight out of the Fifties, in an alternate universe. The kind of bike that everyone rides here. The wheels were as out-of-true as a Pringle. The brakes were a joke, and barely made contact with the rims. I think the bike slowed down more as an effect of bearing friction than brake friction. In fact the locals "stop" not by braking (really, I'm not kidding!) but by sliding their flip-flops along the pavement and wiggling the handlebars wildly back-and-forth, like a drunk Fred Flinstone. They are heavy, unresponsive, and make you feel sad somehow just riding one - like asking your grandmother to carry you up the stairs.

Everything rusted inside a month. The freewheel turned to powder in six months. Someone should have taken it out and shot it. Somehow the local people keep them going and going - literally with bailing wire, tape, string.

$100 for a bike??? Ugh, this is false economy. If you care anything about metalworking or machines don't saddle yourself with this thing. Everything will let you down. Wait another month to save a few more pennies, or check out E-Bay. Hell, go to the Goodwill. I'm serious - anything would be better.

Alistair Hosie
08-30-2006, 05:32 AM
I believe the bicycle from walmart for a hundred bucks will be a good investment go for it .What do you want ?It will be all there and the chinese know more about making bycycles than we do the have millions of them.go for it I wouldn't hesitate a brand new bike for a hundred bucks is good value don't be put off Alistair

Tin Falcon
08-30-2006, 06:53 AM
I used to commute to work twelve miles each way and somtimes 25 miles on sunday for fun no expert. If you are only going tp spend a few miles on the bike one in a while the next is probly OK If you are going any distance sevel times a week get somthing decent. I boght a pacific Chines bike for my son years ago. It came with metal chips packed in the bottom bracket. So if you do by a next or similar take it completly apart clean lube and adjust. Even the good bikes are not adjested at the factory they expect the set up mechanic to do it. Who asembled the wal mat bike.IMO For less than a hundred you should be able to find a decent american bike that has spent most of it life in someones basment or garage. Most american adults do not ride alot If they do ride a lot then they also know maintenace.
Regrds Tin

mark61
08-30-2006, 08:35 AM
I bought 1 of those brand bikes when it was on sale marked down to $49.99 from $100+ at Walmart. Goes down hill just fine. Aint been able to get the dang thing to go UP hill yet!

mark61

wierdscience
08-30-2006, 08:48 AM
A quick Google search reveals they are are death machines:D

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=WALMART+BIKE+RECALL&btnG=Google+Search

The challenge will be finding a GOOD bike for less than $500.

hitnmiss
08-30-2006, 09:05 AM
Most larger towns have a discount bike store. Here the one I recommend is Performance. They are a mail order house with outlet.

I bought a town commuter for $289 there. Cheap front suspension and shock seat. The shifting components are upgraded to Shimano deore, good stuff.

Stand up to pedal once and your junk rear derailur skips and you wreck. The $189 you saved on the walmart bike evaporates. Look at the rear derailur, if it's a stamped metal piece move on. Forget a full suspension at cheap price, man some of those walmart full suspensions are heavy!

However, if you just ride around flat neighborhood 5 times a year I suppose a walmart bike fits the bill.

My ex bought a "pacifica" bike from Target (?) for a cheap bike it was actually fairly decent.

Forrest Addy
08-30-2006, 10:24 AM
You are a cruel man, Allistair.

madman
08-30-2006, 11:03 AM
I know this is off topic but i took my old panasonic radio to work yesterday. It Has PLL Computer Controlled Tuning System a digital clock and buttond for all the tuning. FM LW MW and Sw frequencies. I really like it. It also weighs a few pounds . My diemaker friend Henry started laughing at it. I guess at 48 im the oldest guy on the floor. Henry buys syuff from ebay and last two things he bought for me didnt even work. Primarilly batteries and chargers. The newest ones led charge light doesnt work at all and the other 3 volt lithiumn charger came with the wrong batteries that wouldnt and couldnt ever be recharged as three weeks later a email comes to him from china wrong type vatteries sent non rechargeable,. HM. So im sitting here musing over all this crap new **** and still listening to my old radio thats still working. Moral i dont know but it seems most new stuff is pretty crappy. Even Audreys new 4000. fridge stove fridge has already been replaced and the stove ceramic tops been replaced alreadt. Havent even had em 10 months. **** ti is. I remember the fridge movers comment gee this is the heaviest fridge weve ever moved (my old green double door model). Oh well.

Rex
08-30-2006, 11:47 AM
Trek bicycles are made in China. The last one I bought was a like-new cross-trainer for $50. Watch Craigslist or other local classifieds. People are always buying nice bikes then finding out they don't ever take time to ride.

LarryinLV
08-30-2006, 11:58 AM
You're supposed to pick up an old vintage bicycle from good will.

Take it home; machine up a billet, taper bearing crank for it. Roller chain, cast wheels. You know - use that shop with all those idle tools in it. What are you doing - riding around the neighborhood ! The neighborhood is supposed to come to your place to see what you're working on.

tattoomike68
08-30-2006, 12:35 PM
We picked up TWO MT. FURY roadmaster bikes at wal-mart for $110. no problems they run just fine. Some of the welds are not so hot. My friends buy the high dollar bikes but they have money to throw at stuff like that. I do not.

The best bike I ever had was a 12 speed FONG (Taiwan) from K mart for $89. It was a little tire type race bike. I wore out 2 sets of front wheel bearings and one set of crank bearings before I threw it away. It lasted 6 years.


The biggest part about buying a fancy bike is they get stolen. After 2 $500 bikes of mine were stolen I went cheap and never will buy a fancy one again.

Let the punks steal a cheapo but most of them will overlook the budget bike.

Alistair Hosie
08-30-2006, 02:21 PM
Sorry forest didn't mean to be cruel but I read one report of a boy buying a bike and not knowing what quick change wheels were but that's hardly the manufacturers fault anyway I didn't mean to offend :DAlistair

Tin Falcon
08-30-2006, 04:13 PM
There is no real cheap ride if you end up getting a used bike you usualy have to put tires break pad etc on it. The cheap Dept store bikes are literaly a pain in the seat area. Police auctions can be a good surce if you know what you are looking for. Deals I have gotten.At Goodwill vintage fuji road bike for $15 vintage Puch road bikefor $10 . GT outpost $20Mountain from the flea market. The best deal was when a buddy of mine sold me an 80s vintage American Made Treck with mid 70s Campy components for $20. He got it from the local police aution. unfortunaly his daugter had wrecked the rear rim by reaming it for a shreader valve using a screw driver. So $80 for a set of wheels. Still not a bad deal. The last bike I set up for someone was it for my pastor. Replaced rubber, saddle a few worn parts, repacked bearings,etc i think it was somthing over a hundred bucks. ****'s Sporting Goods(I Guess I have to say Richard's the web site did not like the real name) somtimes has 50% off sale around february you can get a $500 bike for $250 last years closeut type of deal. Unles you are only going around the block a few times a year get somthing decent.
Happy hunting
Tin Falcon

Evan
08-30-2006, 04:26 PM
The biggest part about buying a fancy bike is they get stolen. After 2 $500 bikes of mine were stolen I went cheap and never will buy a fancy one again.

All bicycles weigh the same. A 15 lb bike needs a 20 lb lock. A 25 lb bike needs a 10 lb lock and a 35 lb bike doesn't need a lock.

Alistair Hosie
08-30-2006, 04:40 PM
very wise Evan but I still question the need for an overtly expensive bike for the occasional use. If you are deeply into bikes then you will want the best money can buy this is virtually the same for all hobbies look at golfers I know some who pay hundreds for a single club your not going to tell me the ball knows the difference:D. But seriously if you want as someone said a bike that will give you constant use every day for years then might be wise to spend out a bit more that would make sense so I guess its really "who you are " in relation to the purchase like everything else.Alistair

john hobdeclipe
08-30-2006, 06:20 PM
WalMart's bicycles aren't really intended to be ridden. They're intended to be exchanged for money, then forgotten.

I've seen this happen a lot over the years: Someone buys the lowest price bicycle they can find, it becomes a negative experience, and the person has no more desire to ride a bicycle. Better to buy a higher quality machine, well designed and with better, more reliable components, and enjoy riding it.

Riding around the neighborhood? You don't need front or rear suspension! You don't need an aluminum frame! You don't need 21 speeds! But you DO need a bike that fits properly, is designed properly, and is reliable. Proper bicycle fit is especially important, and the staff at WalMart and other such stores have no clue about this.

Spend some time at a local bicycle shop and learn about some of these things, even if you eventually buy your bike elsewhere.

My recommendation for occasional riding about? An older British 3-speed roadster with Sturmey Archer AW 3 speed hub, "North Road" upright handlebars, and 26 X 1-3/8 wheels or a close equivalent. Nothing fancy, faddy or trendy, but solid and reliable. And easy to maintain. Doesn't have to be British, either. The same design has been made just about everywhere that bikes have been used as practical transport. During the sixties, and perhaps earlier, Sears sold 3-speed bikes made in Austria by Puch. Excellent machines. Western Auto at one time sold a line of 3-speed bikes made by Raleigh. Montgomery Wards sold bikes made by Hercules. An older Schwinn would be a good choice, but a bit on the heavy side. Many of these are still out there and can be had for a song, because they are not "stylish" nowadays.

I've put untold thousands of miles on simple 3-speeds, and loved every minute of it.

The marketing geniuses have convinced the public that a bicycle has to have all kinds of gewgaws and trinkets and springs, and saddles with holes in them (fart vents) and silly shaped frames and color coordinated tires and aerodynamic brakes to slow you down. It's a fraud. You're not racing, you're out enjoying the weather! Keep it simple!

I'd rant some more, but I'm getting hungry.

motomoron
08-30-2006, 06:22 PM
I've been addicted to bikes even longer than to large unwieldy tools.

There's a practically infinite number of nice old European and Japanese bikes from the last 3 decades languishing in basements throughout the land.

They're in the local Craigslist on line, in the Penny Saver and classifieds, on grocery store bulletin boiards...all over. There's an online service called Freecycle you can join for people who want to give perfectly good stuff away.

Friends don't let friends buy department store bikes. It was bad enough when they came from Huffy and Murray and Free Spirit. At least they were as American as patio furniture. And as heavy. The current crop of big box bikes are just awful "looks-sort-of-like" copies of real bikes. Don't confuse these with namebrand stuff. Trek, Specialized, etc all have the majority of their stuff made in China. Giant Bicycle Co. was the largest mfgr. in the world for a long time in Taiwan, and they've got huge production capability in China now.

I worked in the industry for many years delivering the greasy handshake, and while it was a good time and a fine education, if not particularly well-paying, by the time I got out in the mid 90's, the demise of the American Local Bike Shop was in full swing as a result of the Chinese big-box bike and chains like Performance.

x39
08-30-2006, 10:29 PM
My recommendation for occasional riding about? An older British 3-speed roadster .... Nothing fancy, faddy or trendy, but solid and reliable. And easy to maintain. Doesn't have to be British, either. .
I agree completely. I often find these at the dump for free. My last dump find was a Raleigh three speed with rod brakes and a nice leather saddle and tool pouch. It's only flaw was some surface rust and flat tires, but hey what do I want for nothing? My money back? ;)

glenj
08-30-2006, 10:34 PM
How many of you who said that a $49 bicycle is a good buy would turn up your nose or scream bloody murder if someone suggested buying a $8,995 Chinese car that was horribly underpowered for it's weight, was assembled by someone with no training at minumum wage and that had brakes that hardly work at the best of times?

A.K. Boomer
08-30-2006, 11:09 PM
"They are heavy, unresponsive, and make you feel sad somehow just riding one - like asking your grandmother to carry you up the stairs."

that was good GG, boy did that make me laugh when you said they "make you feel sad somehow just riding one"

I think Tin said earlier if you get it disassemble and clean, this is wise, the chineese dont give a crap about follow through..

My advice, i dont care if the frame is aluminum, a wal mart bike is going to be extremly heavy and cheap,,, the market is floaded with used high quality bikes --- take a little time to learn what there worth so you recognize quality when it comes up, you want aluminum rims, you want some good grade cranks and shift components and handlebars stem, seat post all these things should be a good grade aluminum (if you see the name easton its getting real good) Keep in mind that a high quality cro-mo frame is still competitivly light so dont shun steel if its cro-mo and a hot steed...

Your Old Dog
08-31-2006, 12:33 PM
Not knowing your age, I'd go for a three speed with the upright handle bars. I just thru out 2 of them that the wife and I used for years. We got the bigger seats for them (damn neal like saddles or a horse) to keep the little seats from getting brown and stinky! We had the 5 speeds but spent the better part of the day shifting gears instead of ambuling around town at a leisurely pace. The 3 speeds worked better for us for casual riding.

BTW, on the Walmart bikes, for an extra $2.00 you can get the same bike made in titanium with mag rims :D Not only that, the workkidship is nothing short of phenominal. Hell I couldn't handle tools like those kids till I was 5 or 6 years old !!

Mike P
08-31-2006, 05:12 PM
The $100 bikes are a false economy. John H. hit it on the head, you would be better off paying a bit more for a used, higher quality bike at the local bike store, swap meet, garage sale, etc... It's the components that make the bike. Deraileurs, shifters, brakes, hubs, cranks are the parts that make the difference. "Better" components will make riding a bike a dream for a long time.

For a bit of comparison, a Shimano Ultegra level CHAIN (just the chain) is about $15-$25. How can they sell an ENTIRE bike for 4 times the price of a good quality CHAIN????

x39
08-31-2006, 07:26 PM
While on the subject, I was in a high end sporting goods store not long ago and had a chance to look at some of the mountain bikes. Truly some beautiful worksmanship and technology. Full suspension, disc brakes, the works.

winchman
08-31-2006, 07:35 PM
It just amazes me that they can make anything on the other side of the world that consists of various quantities of at least 50 different items, plus the welding, painting, casting, molding, assembly, and packaging, then ship it here and distribute it to stores, and assemble it, and still make a profit when they sell it for less than $100.

Maybe they're giving us the bikes below cost so we'll pay for the ships that haul them here. Truly mind-boggling.

I guess I'll take a look at some more yard sales and second-hand stores.

Roger

BillH
08-31-2006, 08:16 PM
A quick Google search reveals they are are death machines:D

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=WALMART+BIKE+RECALL&btnG=Google+Search

The challenge will be finding a GOOD bike for less than $500.
Well online I've seen HONDA bikes for 160$, yeh, I want more info too.
I have a specialized Hardrock sport mountain bike that was 330$ local and it is a very good bike. Well I dont care much for the sram components on it, they had to put a shimano front derailer on mine to get it to work right. I just put road tires on it and have been riding it daily down here in Florida for past couplke of days between 8 and 16 miles. If your small enough, I'd just get a carbon fiber fuji road bike. Only reason I have mountain bike is to support my extra weight. 6 months from now that wont be a problem I dont think. Maybe 1 year.