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#1
Old 01-11-2006, 11:00 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: oklahoma city
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Quality of Mongoose Bicycles at Walmart?

About 10 years ago, I bought a Mongoose brand mountain bike for about 300 dollars at a bicycle shop. While Mongoose wasn't being touted as top of the line, it certainly enjoyed a very good reputation. About 2 years ago, I went to Walmart and looked at some of the bicycles and they had Mongoose mountain bikes that looked substantially more rugged and ten times as stylish, for about 100-150 bucks. My question is, is this the same brand??? And if so, is it cheaper because they skimped on materials and workmannship or because manufacturing technique, supply and demand, i.e., market forces, drove the prices down?
thanks,
hh
#2
Old 01-11-2006, 12:14 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2005
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Mongoose was bought by a company called Pacific Cycles, which also owed Schwinn, Roadmaster, GT. They decided since Mongoose was already behind in reputation to these other bikes, to make it (for lack of a better phrase) their Wal-Mart brand.

I've raced BMX since the late Eighties, and starting around '92-'93 you really wouldn't see serious riders using a Mongoose anymore. I don't know anything about their production, but it seems that the overall quality i not there anymore for competition.
#3
Old 01-11-2006, 12:19 PM
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Location: Akron, OH
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Mongoose says they sell better bikes at bike shops than other retailers. [1] Additionally, there was a merger with Pacific Cycle in 2001. I can't speak as to whether or not the nature of the company itself has changed.
Personally, if I planned on riding for several days straight on vacation, or every day with good weather, I'd get one at a bike shop. If this will be a commuter bike, definitely go bike shop. If I planned on occasional rides, I'd CONSIDER the Wal-Mart unit. I'm a disgusting fatbody, so I'd wind up getting the nicer bike just so the frame wouldn't bend the first time I went over a big bump.

[1] http://mongoose.com/hub/faq.php

Q: What's the difference between the Mongoose bikes at department stores and the ones at bike shops? Should I pay more bike shop bike?

A: Bikes found at your local, independent bike shop are different than the bikes found at a department store. Frames and components on bike shop bikes are of higher quality and are assembled by trained professional mechanics. A bike shop can offer high quality service after the sale, as well. In addition, bike shop models are typically available in a range of frame sizes to accommodate a much wider variety of riders. Bikes found in department stores are generally fine for recreational use, and the frames and components reflect that.
#4
Old 01-11-2006, 12:58 PM
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: IL, USA
Posts: 5,209
- - - Any bike sold at Wal-Mart typically has skimped on materials. The brand-name in that instance doesn't matter. There are particular reasons I mave mentioned in other threads on bicycles here--but to sum up quickly, any bicycle you buy there would last perhaps a few months of light use by an adult, maybe a year for a small child. To top it off, Wal-Mart is often little-to-no help in obtaining replacement parts, and regular bicycle shops often can't get the same parts that the Wal-Mart bikes use. The bearings in these bicycles in particular are unusual sizes, and of very low quality and often not sealed well at all.

....And this isn't a matter of me "ragging on Wal-Mart"; some of the items they sell are entirely satisfactory. But the bicycles are junk--they look right, but really don't last very long at all.
~
#5
Old 01-11-2006, 01:05 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Leominster MA
Posts: 5,291
Mongoose is no longer the name of a good bike. Them and Huffy are in the same catagory.
#6
Old 01-11-2006, 01:24 PM
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I once asked someone who works for Pacific Cycle and is involved in the Wal-Mart contract. They build the cheapest possible model for Wal-Mart with little or no concern for quality or longevity. Its like wearing only 15 pieces of flair, the bare minimum.
#7
Old 01-11-2006, 02:06 PM
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Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Dogpatch/Middle TN.
Posts: 30,789
Note--bicycles are shipped, unassembled, in boxes.

Thus, your bicycle is never any better than the doofus who assembles it.

It is possible that Wal-Mart has a trained bicycle tech in the back room. <SNORT>

It is somewhat more likely that they have a 72 year old Greeter named Phyllis, whose acquaintence with tools is theoretical, and who will use a hammer to drive screws in, if you let her.

I got burned at Wal-Mart, buying a bike.

My next bike came from my local (non-yuppie-ized) bike shop.
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#8
Old 01-11-2006, 02:12 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
Note--bicycles are shipped, unassembled, in boxes.

Thus, your bicycle is never any better than the doofus who assembles it.

It is possible that Wal-Mart has a trained bicycle tech in the back room. <SNORT>
Not only possible, but also true, at least in the two Supercenters in which I've worked.
#9
Old 01-11-2006, 02:38 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 2,926
The box-store bicycles are put together by people paid on a by-piece basis. In other words, how much you make depends on how many you can do in an hour. No post-assembly review, no quality control, no nothing.

My sweetie has to go look at the bikes and bike stuff in every store we enter, every time we enter. I can't tell you how many bikes I've seen at Walmart, Target, etc., that I'd be afraid to ride. Really poor materials, too-light materials, botched welds, improper assembly - you name it, they've got it.

Do yourself a favor. If you need a cheap bike, go to your local bicycle shop and ask about used bikes. It may be a bit more expensive, but at least it probably won't kill you due to drastic failure. (That's how I started when I wasn't sure I was going to do it long enough to pay for a good bike, four bikes and $3000 ago. That's why they have 'em - the first one's cheap, but then you get hooked and the sky's the limit!)
#10
Old 01-11-2006, 02:42 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Naugatuck, CT
Posts: 6,760
That's sad. I remember when I was a kid that Mongoose bikes were awesome. Like half the weight of anyone else's BMX, which made a huge difference in trick ability.
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