Department store bicycle review
Today I saw a flyer from Big W where they promote their bikes. I remember having one of these 4 years ago so let me dig up some old photos and share my views about these.
Department store bikes are shit. We all know this deep in our hearts but somehow we still want to believe we can get a decent bike for low price. With this post I’d like to discourage everyone to buy a bike from department stores.
I had one from Big W called the Repco Commuter for $160. It wasn’t even the cheapest one but they made sure that quality still sucked. The rear hub had a 1 mm play from day one but I decided to live with that. A week later the pedal fell off when I was cruising around. Inspecting the part I learned that the whole pedal body including the thread was made out of plastic.
In the same time my brother purchased a Repco Random for $99 from Big W which is a super simple beach cruiser. Even if it’s simple a lot of things can go wrong. We took it for a ride around the block for the first time and the rear hub developed a massive 20 mm play. It was dangerous to ride like that so we walked the bikes home. Then suddenly the tube blew up. It was inflated to 35 psi which is not much so I assume the tyre or tube wasn’t seated properly when they assembled it. At the end of the day we had 5 minutes of fun for $99.
So we took the bikes back and had a nasty argument with customer service. Finally we got our money back.
The build and part quality is terrible and these bikes are completely unusable. In average you can get 10-100 kms out in total then you can throw it away. Same story for Dunlop, Huffy and other shitty brands.
It’s completely beyond me how these company operate. What’s the point of wasting resources and produce something which is not functional? These bikes are a waste of money, space, resource, time and everything.
I have checked the Repco site just for giggles. I came across the following quotes:
"Designed by Australians to Australians"
"Built for toughness, engineered to last"
"Safety, affordability, quality&reliability for the whole family."
This is pure bullshit and lie. Fuck them. They better change their bs to something sensible like “Our bicycles are shite and dangerous”
Don’t make the same mistake as me. Don’t trust these brands and do not buy a bike from Big W, Kmart, Aldi etc They are much-much worse than you expect it to be.
Do yourself a favour and buy a bike from a bike store. Spend at least $300-400 so you’ll end up with a bike which is functional and you can enjoy riding. Or buy a good quality second hand.