New posts

Bike Shops - Listen

June 27, 2018, 9:13 a.m.
Posts: 1118
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Posted by: craw

Posted by: tashi

Yep, the distributor system is a major drag on the industry up here.  

I could see how they were useful in the past but now?  It's just as easy to send something for service in California as it is in Colorado so I really don't know what customers need 'em for.  I think they offer a little more value to shops (warranty support and product knowledge training?) but it seems like the shops looking to survive in the future in the face of easy access to information and fast/good mail order should perhaps be looking for a way to cut out the middleman.  They're customers already are, and lagging behind your customers is never a good idea.

I know way more than more most bike stores when it comes to the peculiar stuff I've been studying for weeks online. What they do offer is actual boots on the ground local knowledge of what parts and setups are working for people under various conditions, etc. That kind of information in super valuable in tempering your research and I'll always work with my local shop to get it.

I agree that I will probably have more knowledge on the specific / perhaps not 100% mainstream product that I have been examining on online than the LBS will.  When attempting to discuss said item at the LBS to get real world feedback, I more often then not get met with "I havent heard of that before' or 'we dont deal with that product'.  Rarely will I get 'we can look into that for you and get back to you' , but instead often get fed mis-information or biased attitude.  I dont expect them to be experts on every fine detail of the crazy bike world, but some effort in understanding or continuing the conversation would make a world of difference.  I was recently told while attempting to source some RF crank spacers (for a 30mm cinch crankset with a CK PF30 BB), that 'no one uses those' and that 'they are dangerous and shouldn't be used'.  That is not only not true (as RF makes the product specifically for this purpose), but is also not helpful in keeping the customer engaged.  I walked out and ordered them online and got them 3 days later.

June 27, 2018, 9:47 a.m.
Posts: 9183
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

I am about to go boost rear end and a BB92....to match up to my SixC cranks...I was wondering if I would need spacers or something...what did your research find?

June 27, 2018, 10:30 a.m.
Posts: 1118
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Posted by: pedalhound

I am about to go boost rear end and a BB92....to match up to my SixC cranks...I was wondering if I would need spacers or something...what did your research find?

You definitely need spacers.  There are no external cups on BB92 or BB30 so you need spacers to take up that space.

https://www.raceface.com/media/BBchart-x2.pdf

You should be able to figure out what you need from this chart.  I ended up getting mine from Jenson, but you might be able to find someone who will order them in for you.

June 27, 2018, 12:50 p.m.
Posts: 9183
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

Thanks Shoreboy!

June 27, 2018, 6:25 p.m.
Posts: 511
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

most the guys in our local shops are excellent with few exceptions. my main store has worked with me at length where i've bought half the stuff on line (rims, hubs, etc) and they've built out my bikes without complaint. (i do apologize in advance and they are understanding)

one guy deserves a mention though. he never looks less than exasperated and well beyond caring and half asleep. how the shop keeps him employed i'll never know. i imagine it's pity on his family or something. few days ago i pulled a tire off the shelf (some brand i'd never seen) and held it up and made some comment like cool looking tire, never heard of them, and the dude looked over and said 'what the hell is that, never seen that before' and then looked away as if i wasn't there.  in a store he works at.... it was impressive.

June 28, 2018, 1:41 a.m.
Posts: 5
Joined: May 1, 2018

It’s weird how we can spend a small fortune on bikes lots of shop employees could never afford even at staff price, but expect them to give us the same service and expertise as $500/h professionals.

That’s a big part of why shops are having to change, and it works at the high end, and maybe the big low end stuff, but the mid range has such little margin it’s no wonder shops are falling over and manufacturers are just cutting them out altogether.

June 28, 2018, 4:20 a.m.
Posts: 944
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: Heinous

It’s weird how we can spend a small fortune on bikes lots of shop employees could never afford even at staff price, but expect them to give us the same service and expertise as $500/h professionals.

That’s a big part of why shops are having to change, and it works at the high end, and maybe the big low end stuff, but the mid range has such little margin it’s no wonder shops are falling over and manufacturers are just cutting them out altogether.

That’s such a load of shit. Good service wins always, whether it’s high end, low end or mid level. What kills shops is giving poor service and bad attitude.

June 28, 2018, 7:52 p.m.
Posts: 120
Joined: Feb. 13, 2016

@Shoreboy:  Yep, unfortunately this has pretty much been my experience as well. There is a reason I do 95% of my bike part shopping and 99% of my research online.


 Last edited by: Xorrox on June 28, 2018, 7:53 p.m., edited 1 time in total.
June 29, 2018, 9:43 p.m.
Posts: 165
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

Posted by: Heinous

It’s weird how we can spend a small fortune on bikes lots of shop employees could never afford even at staff price, but expect them to give us the same service and expertise as $500/h professionals.

That’s a big part of why shops are having to change, and it works at the high end, and maybe the big low end stuff, but the mid range has such little margin it’s no wonder shops are falling over and manufacturers are just cutting them out altogether.

When I worked at shops in the early 80’s I couldn’t afford the top shelf stuff but I was always stoked for people getting great top of the line bikes. What did bother me were the racers boys that came in and expected to cut in line and get their bike dealt with because they raced. I specifically remember one fuck wit that didn’t have his claim tag. I’m so and so. Sorry buddy, if you ain’t Eddy fuckin Merckx I don’t care. What bike? Red one. Red one? Really? Does it have a manufacturers name on it? Colnago. OK. I can probably find that downstairs. Much later I found out that guy didn’t have many friends  neither did his sister.

There’s no excuse to treat customers badly unless they ask for it. Not many do. I don’t understand why a shop would care that a customer bought something online and was willing to pay a shop to install or fix it. What if the person bought the parts from another shop? Or it’s a bike they don’t sell. Oh, we don’t sell Trek. Take that bike away from here. We don’t want your money.

June 29, 2018, 10:46 p.m.
Posts: 17
Joined: June 1, 2018

I would love to see someone open up a bike shop that does strictly service/maintenance work - no selling of products. 

Allow customers to order in parts/bikes online and have them sent into the shop to get installed or built up and charge a stocking & install fee. I feel like that would be useful in today's market where many informed buyers are now opting to shop online from the CRC / Jenson etc. due to the inflation of prices from the LBS. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the community aspect and proper customer service that a great LBS provides

June 30, 2018, 1:01 a.m.
Posts: 944
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: PSY

I would love to see someone open up a bike shop that does strictly service/maintenance work - no selling of products. 

Allow customers to order in parts/bikes online and have them sent into the shop to get installed or built up and charge a stocking & install fee. I feel like that would be useful in today's market where many informed buyers are now opting to shop online from the CRC / Jenson etc. due to the inflation of prices from the LBS. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the community aspect and proper customer service that a great LBS provides

I had a plan for something like that about 17yrs ago, something completely different in the service world. TBH I'm surprised nobody had done something similar by now. Maybe it's time to quit my job, sell my place and start something new.

June 30, 2018, 7:58 a.m.
Posts: 1182
Joined: April 25, 2003

Posted by: craw

Posted by: tashi

Yep, the distributor system is a major drag on the industry up here.  

I could see how they were useful in the past but now?  It's just as easy to send something for service in California as it is in Colorado so I really don't know what customers need 'em for.  I think they offer a little more value to shops (warranty support and product knowledge training?) but it seems like the shops looking to survive in the future in the face of easy access to information and fast/good mail order should perhaps be looking for a way to cut out the middleman.  They're customers already are, and lagging behind your customers is never a good idea.

I know way more than more most bike stores when it comes to the peculiar stuff I've been studying for weeks online. What they do offer is actual boots on the ground local knowledge of what parts and setups are working for people under various conditions, etc. That kind of information in super valuable in tempering your research and I'll always work with my local shop to get it.

IME that local knowledge is generally held by the shop employees that have that specific experience, not the distributors.  My concern is that the distribution model we have here is less and less relevant every day and it’s starting to hurt shops as customers start to shop differently. I love my LBS and a bunch of their staff and value what they do but if they never adapt they’ll loose a lot of my business.

Lucky for them there’s e-bikes I guess

June 30, 2018, 9:33 a.m.
Posts: 165
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

The Fix in Whistler only does repairs. No clothes, no bikes but they do sell some parts that they would need for repairs anyway. They do well.

June 30, 2018, 11:15 a.m.
Posts: 1182
Joined: April 25, 2003

Posted by: andy-eunson

The Fix in Whistler only does repairs. No clothes, no bikes but they do sell some parts that they would need for repairs anyway. They do well.

There was a shop in Victoria that basically tried this in the late 90’s - step stocked some super high-end parts as well. I think they were a bit early but this model will probably work for a lot of people. 

Velofix is basically a mobile version of what we’re talking about, they’ve partnered up with a couple manufacturers for new bike assembly as well.

June 30, 2018, 11:21 a.m.
Posts: 1231
Joined: May 23, 2006

The Fix in Whistler only does repairs. No clothes, no bikes but they do sell some parts that they would need for repairs anyway. They do well.

Yeah but that's servicing a high concentration of bikes being beat down in a small geographic area. Could that work in the lower mainland?


 Last edited by: tungsten on June 30, 2018, 11:22 a.m., edited 2 times in total.

Forum jump: