Zitter wrote:Tymon, you buy the bike and then make the swaps yourself and sell off the take-offs. Expecting a shop to bear that cost for you is ridiculous; they're hardly making any money on the bike in the first place. Even if it is a brand new takeoff, they would be lucky to get their cost back on it since it's technically used and out of packaging, so then they give up all the margin on the parts they just swapped out for you. That's how bike shops go out of business.
I work at a large online retailer and even we don't do swaps like that.
yes of course I can do that. that's not the point though. the point is - shop selling a high end bike can't even try to handle customer's expectations, that are essential regarding his needs. what's the point of buying expensive stuff if it doesn't suit you.
about not making money by bike shops, what sort of silly urban legend that is. depending on the bike brand the margin's always between, say 10-25%. that's at least few hundret euro from the bike I wanted to purchase. maybe it's not much where you live, but here, that's close to a medium monthly wage.
and again, from business perspective, having customers tweak and upgrade bikes on their own is a straight path to losing them to online shops or lbs' that actually give a damn. my father's company sold computers in the 90's, he used to say it's not always about making that much profit from a given transaction, it's sometimes about preventing your competition from earning. you might earn less today, but will gain a satisfied customer who's going to bring you profit in a long run.
about re-using new parts. two shops I frequently buy at, they do this all the time, mostly using those parts for servicing bikes - you want them to change the cassette, swap a stem, get new tires, they'll often offer you a part that's been taken from some brand new bike. you'll get a discount (say, 10-15%) and both sides of the deal are happy, although LBS doesn't really make much on that particular part. also club members and masters often seek for that kind of offers, as they burn through components faster and the price plays a big role for them.
so this might be a cultural thing, having a brand new part in the box. apparently the definition of "new" is different for me, and different for some of you. from where I stand, and many people I know do, that doesn't matter at all. but again, 10 years ago shops here wouldn't even stock expensive (especially road) bike components, so that maybe makes us appreciate what we ride and what we buy a little bit more. those shops that were operating at that time, and succesfully still do, have no issues with swapping a part and selling it afterwards. there's always someone who's gonna need it. and it's not like people come in and ask for half a bike being replaced. it's not something I did (cassette? chainrings? really...lol?) those shops even buy bikes at the end of the season (with a huge discount) and sell them for parts (yup, no boxes here, and grease all over them lol) for the pure joy of customers who can save some cash and still get a new