Beware of buying a bicycle over the internet

A CLARENCE Valley bike shop owner has urged potential cyclists to be wary of buying cheap poor quality goods over the internet after he was asked to repair a bike purchased from China.

Maclean Bicycle Centre owner Simon Willmore described the bike, bought under the brand name of Golden Pigeon, as 'downright dangerous'.

“We spent hours on it, trying to get it fit to ride and I don't think it was possible to get it right,” Mr Willmore said.

“It's not so much that it was badly made, it's more that it's downright dangerous.”

Mr Willmore said people buying a bike over the internet should be wary of some Asian brands, especially from India.

“If you see names like Rudge, or BSA you can be sure they'll be pretty nasty.

“In a lot of cases they take a name that's known and sell their bikes under that name.”

Biking website Cargo Cycles gave the Golden Pigeon a mixed review.

“Not for the faint-hearted,” wrote Cargo Cycles owner Tim Paton. “On paper, these look like a perfect bike for normal people to go about their normal business - a low-cost, low-maintenance, low-impact mode of transport for Australian towns and cities. That's what we were hoping for.

“What we got is close, but not close enough. We don't plan on ordering any more of these bikes, which is really disappointing.

“The problem? They are a design dating from the Chinese Revolution, with build quality to match.”

Mr Willmore said that for most people the guarantee of a bike enjoyable to ride was to buy from a reputable bike shop.

“If you're quality conscious, buying from a bike shop is the way to go,” Mr Willmore said.

“Department store bikes are 'one-size-fits-all'. The manufacturers have generally cut corners to keep the price down. If you're prepared to pay a little bit more, you will get a lot more out of your bike.”

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