I Bought a Lemond Etape Today

This morning I had a conversation with my Giant Boulder mountain bike.

Me: Hey buddy, how would you like a friend to hang out with?
Boulder: What do you mean?
Me: I’m getting another bike today.
Boulder: Why do you need another bike? Am I not good enough?
Me: You’re a wonderful mountain bike. I just decided that I want a road bike too. Don’t worry, he’s a nice bike. Now you’ll have someone to talk to when you’re hanging out on the wall.
Boulder: Where do new bikes come from?
Me: Talk to your father.

So I bought a used 2008 Lemond Etape this morning.

The Lemond Etape hanging out.

I made an error, caused by an assumption on my part. The bike was listed as having a 57cm frame. I intended to take a tape measure with me when I saw the bike, but I managed to leave it behind. So when I saw the bike I relied on my perception of the frame, as well as asking for conformation that it was truly a 57cm frame. Well, after I bought it I took it home and measured it. Sure enough, it measures 51cm center to center (that’s the size frame recommended for a person between  4’11” and 5’7″  . . . I’m a bit bigger than that). But Lemond bikes have an unusually  long center pipe (in fact it happens to be 57cm on this bike), which is why it passed my visual inspection and why it might end up fitting me fine. The handlebars have also been raised 3cm. So it feels comfortable to ride, even though it is technically undersized. I’m planning to take it out on a long ride soon to see if it becomes uncomfortable.

Now you might think I should try to return the bike. But I don’t return things (I’ve never returned an item to a store). Once I purchase something the deal is done. If I decide I don’t want it I will give the item away or try to sell it, I won’t try to go back an void a transaction. So asking for my money back is out of the question.

I’m thinking that it will fit me just fine. We’ll see.

In all likelihood it will be several days before I can find time to go on an extended bike ride. Until then my bikes will converse on my living room wall.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “I Bought a Lemond Etape Today

  1. Olivia

    1) sweet bike, I hope it works out for you!

    2) love the conversation in the beginning

    3) love all the “rules” you have for yourself (not returning things, etc.) and I am curious as to the reasons behind them…

    • Thanks Olivia!

      I do my best not to return items because as I see it a transaction is me giving my word to purchase something. I’m not renting it or buying time to think about it; I’m purchasing the item. A returned item costs the retailer/seller time, effort, and in some cases leads to merchandise with reduced value.

      The benefits of avoiding returning items (as I see it) are:
      1. It is a courtesy to the seller.
      2. It leads to deliberate purchases.

  2. EMU

    Just wanted to point out that a 57cm top tube is common for frames that are roughly 58cm standard geometry. If the bike measures 51cm, then it must be compact. To find the true measurement you must measure a horizontal line from where the top tube meets head tube, straight to seat post. This will be the effective top tube, and more important that the seat tube length.

    Just picked up a used 2008 etape for my girl on eBay… How do you like the ride?

    • I liked the eTape, though I really noticed that it was undersized for me on rides over 15 miles. I sold the bike when I moved across the country, so hopefully it is still being used and enjoyed back on the East Coast.

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