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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was wondering what recommendations people have for what to look for in a used bike. I usually like buying new appliances and cars so I know they don't have a bad history, but since this will be my first road bike, I was considering just going with a newer used bike to get a better quality bike for the money until I really know what I like.

So, if I'm looking to buy a bike for under $1,000 that is only a few years old and originally sold for between $1,000 and $2,000, what should I look for? My biggest fear is that the bike will have previously been in a crash and the structural integrity has been compromised. Is there any way to tell this other than major scratches, as well as other serious problems?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I went to a LBS over the weekend and test road the specialized tricross, which I really liked. I appreciated their service, but a new 2009 one is a little out of my price range, hence why I want to try a used one. I'm really looking for a well rounded bike for light trail riding (compact dirt and gravel), commuting, and decent on the road for my first triathlon. Any particular recommendations for what to look for on craigslist or ebay in regard to a bike similar to this?

Also, how easy is it to learn how to put a bike together yourself and upgrade various components as needed? I've always been one to fix things myself, but is this completely out of most people's range of knowledge and ability? It just seems so expensive to have a bike shop assemble and install bike components for you, although maybe there is a good reason.
 
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