Why I'll never buy from a local bike shop again

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.

Moderator: robbosmans

mattr
Posts: 4673
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 6:43 pm
Location: The Grim North.

by mattr

I have the same experience of most LBS's. Though both the good ones i've found over the years have gone under.

Not enough profit in working on, or selling parts for high end finicky bikes (and finicky customers).

mattr
Posts: 4673
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 6:43 pm
Location: The Grim North.

by mattr

TobinHatesYou wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:52 pm
ChiZ01 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:31 pm
i am surprised people actually pay retail for bikes, those new $8k bikes will be $4k in a few month on eBay, it would be even cheaper if you just buy the frameset, wheelset, and groupset separately
Have you ever actually priced this out with the exact same parts? This is almost never true.
It used to be the cheapest way to buy a bike, get the frame, wheels and bits, self build. Save 15-20% AND get the bike built properly.
Hasn't been the case for at least 10-12 years.
Every bike i've looked at in the last few years has basically cost around 15% less than i can build it for by buying from places like bike24. (unless it's discontinued kit on clearance!)

by Weenie


DJT21
Posts: 361
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 7:35 pm

by DJT21

Shame really. Buying an $8K bike should be an enjoyable experience. And if you've spent $8K on a bike with the shop, then the likelihood of you spending several more $K with them over the preceding months/years is probably quite high. Instead, they've given you a poor experience, and lost a good customer.

If this is typical of an LBS, then it's not a surprise they're struggling. The last time I used one was seven years ago at a ski resort in The Alps, to fix a couple of broken spokes. I was very graeful of that LBS!

none
Posts: 249
Joined: Mon Dec 17, 2018 11:29 pm
Location: NE PA

by none

RussellS wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:01 pm
I don't see the problem here. Maybe I am foolish, but I expect everything to be correct. Perfect. Do you honestly expect the mechanic to do a good job on the expensive bikes and do a piss poor job on the cheap bikes? So a car mechanic will fix the Mercedes and Porsche cars correctly, but do a crap job on the Chevette and Pinto cars? I'm aware fixing Chevette and Pinto cars correctly is impossible, but the attempt should be made. You're basically condoning and encouraging discrimination. Maybe beautiful people should have their food cooked correctly at restaurants and the ugly people should be served rotten food?
My point is that after multiple bikes a mechanic's been working on all day.. you are bound to have the quality of work go down, day after day after day...
You don't see the problem? maybe you should try working for minimum wage on crappy, dirty bikes all day long for weeks on in.. that's just majority of mechanic's work.

seaneT1
Posts: 337
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2015 11:08 am
Location: Thessaloniki, Greece

by seaneT1

There are also people, like me, who might not have the time, money, equipment, knowledge and/or are completely incapable of being their own bike mechanic ( I personally have the knowledge, some time,money and equipment, but I seem to become an ape every time I come close to wrench tbh!!!!), and we actually DEPEND on our LBS mechanics, which is the worst. Most of the time, the mechanics tend to not be adequate enough, and/or the simply do not care!!! But if you are lucky, and I definitely consider my self to be amongst those few lucky ones since I have found 2 near perfect mechanics close to me, you may find a good mechanic near you, and that is one of the best feelings ever, knowing that there is a professional that you can actually rely on in case you need something for your bike!!!! Also, getting personal with your bike mechanic actually helps A LOT and in many ways, and so if you really want to have the job done at 110%, I higly recommend doing that!

TheRich
Posts: 820
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2019 1:36 am

by TheRich

none wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:15 pm
My point is that after multiple bikes a mechanic's been working on all day.. you are bound to have the quality of work go down, day after day after day...
You don't see the problem? maybe you should try working for minimum wage on crappy, dirty bikes all day long for weeks on in.. that's just majority of mechanic's work.
Maybe that's just the consistant quality that particular employee puts out, but what that employee does isn't indicative of other shops, or even other people working in the same shop.

robertbb
Posts: 1616
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:35 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by robertbb

I have several of my LBS' (one in particular) to thank......................................................

for inspiring me to go out and buy a work stand and all the tools I need, read manuals and watch youtube. Yes, good tools are expensive, but they've paid themselves back already.

Several years later and I've built all my bikes from scratch and service them regularly. A coffee or beer (depending on time of day) and some good tunes, with a bike on the stand is cathartic, fun and beats Netflix! Feels great to be out riding a bike and know what every little bit does, how it all works, and that it was installed to neatly and to spec as per manufacturer's documentation.

No more narcissistic, arrogant, rude, careless, malicious and in one case perpetually drunk "mechanics" touching my expensive bikes and parts.

SOOO many stories. Seems being a complete douchenozzle is a prerequisite for owning or working in a bike shop.

MMW
Posts: 57
Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2018 4:23 pm

by MMW

AJS914 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:42 pm
There is no excuse but ... the retail bicycle business has always been a low profit and thus attracks low wage and under trained employees who are cycling enthusiasts. Shop owners are often enthusiasts that fall into the business. It's always been this way. Today, high end bikes are getting more and more technical with advanced materials and require a high attention to detail. You need the careful and methodical mind of an engineer to install some parts or build some framesets and you typically aren't going to get that for $15/hour.
$15/hour ---
In denmark we pay like +$100/hour :wink:

AJS914
Posts: 4405
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm

by AJS914

I'm talking about what a bicycle shop employee makes not how much the shop charges.

RussellS
Posts: 890
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:31 am

by RussellS

none wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:15 pm
RussellS wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:01 pm
I don't see the problem here. Maybe I am foolish, but I expect everything to be correct. Perfect. Do you honestly expect the mechanic to do a good job on the expensive bikes and do a piss poor job on the cheap bikes? So a car mechanic will fix the Mercedes and Porsche cars correctly, but do a crap job on the Chevette and Pinto cars? I'm aware fixing Chevette and Pinto cars correctly is impossible, but the attempt should be made. You're basically condoning and encouraging discrimination. Maybe beautiful people should have their food cooked correctly at restaurants and the ugly people should be served rotten food?
My point is that after multiple bikes a mechanic's been working on all day.. you are bound to have the quality of work go down, day after day after day...
You don't see the problem? maybe you should try working for minimum wage on crappy, dirty bikes all day long for weeks on in.. that's just majority of mechanic's work.
I had a minimum wage job at Long John Silver's one summer during high school. Cook. And a few other jobs where I was not paid too highly. But in none of my jobs have I ever felt like I was entitled to do a bad job because I was not compensated highly enough. I guess I am strange. But in all of my jobs I agreed to work for this pay. So I always do my best work. Doesn't matter what the job is. Cooking fish or hush puppies at Long John Silver. Sweeping floors at my warehouse job. Loading furniture at my moving job. Or auditing at my accounting job. I always believed in doing my best work. Or trying to. I know there were plenty of times I did not do a good job but it was never because I intentionally tried to do a poor job. Or thought I was entitled to do a poor job. But I'm sure I am strange. And now days people trying to do a good job is probably weird. I understand if you are saying that at the end of a 12 hour shift of hard work that the employee is tired and half blind from hard work and their quality of work falls off. But you seem to imply that employees choose what quality of work they do based on the customer or work being done. The worker chooses what level of work to provide. This customer gets sh-tty service, this customer gets quality service.

TobinHatesYou
Posts: 6842
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:02 pm

by TobinHatesYou

I feel fortunate that I know the mechanics at several different shops. When I've *f##k* something up dearly, I request a specific mechanic work on my bike.

kode54
Posts: 2029
Joined: Tue May 23, 2006 9:39 pm

by kode54

There's a high-end bike shop pretty far from me and there's one that fairly close that's not that high-end, maybe on the medium spectrum. That said, if I had my way, I would take my bikes to the better place, but seeing that the lower end shop is close, I simply work on the bikes myself. For convenience and to make sure things are done right. Since the OP did take the time to go back to the shop and have them fix the issues, it become frustrating and time wasting. Like someone mentioned...there's YouTube videos for just about everything...and even for those that don't know what they're doing.
- Factor 02 VAM Disc + DA9170 + Enve 4.5AR CK CL hubs
- Moots Vamoots Disc RSL Titanium + DA9170 + Enve 3.4AR CK CL hubs
- Factor LS Disc + DA9170 + Enve G23 CK CL hubs
- Allied Able + DA9170 + Enve G27 CK CL hubs --> outgoing

bikeboy1tr
Posts: 751
Joined: Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:19 am
Location: Southern Ontario Canada

by bikeboy1tr

I am fortunate to have the skills to do most all my own work and have built almost every bike that I and my wife have purchased. Most times I get all my parts onsale but normally I have good parts being switched from one frame to the newest one. The old frame gets the trickle down parts from wherever and the new frame will have more of the new parts installed. In my surrounding area (an hours drive) I know of a few good LBS where I will get wheels built or spoke blanks threaded to repair wheels with non standard length spokes. In my direct area there is nothing for shops so I have had to be able to do my own work unless I want to drive for an hour. I have people from our club wanting me to work on their bikes all the time but since I work 6 days a week I have to refuse most not all, but most. Instead we do a seminar were I show people how to do the basics of maintaining thier rides.
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=154188
2018 Colnago V2R Rim Brake
2014 Norco Threshold Disc Brake
2012 Time RXRS Ulteam Rim Brake
2008 Time VXR Rim Brake
2006 Ridley Crosswind Rim Brake

mattr
Posts: 4673
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 6:43 pm
Location: The Grim North.

by mattr

There might be YouTube videos for everything, but some people need clockwise and anti-clockwise explaining to them.
Some of them work in bike shops.

bikeboy1tr
Posts: 751
Joined: Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:19 am
Location: Southern Ontario Canada

by bikeboy1tr

kode54 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:10 pm
There's a high-end bike shop pretty far from me and there's one that fairly close that's not that high-end, maybe on the medium spectrum. That said, if I had my way, I would take my bikes to the better place, but seeing that the lower end shop is close, I simply work on the bikes myself. For convenience and to make sure things are done right. Since the OP did take the time to go back to the shop and have them fix the issues, it become frustrating and time wasting. Like someone mentioned...there's YouTube videos for just about everything...and even for those that don't know what they're doing.
YouTube is a great source for knowledge, just last night I was trying to figure out what piece I was missing to install a chaincatcher on my wifes bike with etap and found the video showing the piece I needed. I knew I had it somewhere and then I realized it was on my backup road bike with the Red Mech fd. Swapped one for the other and its done. Having a laptop in the shop is almost a tool you cant be without.
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=154188
2018 Colnago V2R Rim Brake
2014 Norco Threshold Disc Brake
2012 Time RXRS Ulteam Rim Brake
2008 Time VXR Rim Brake
2006 Ridley Crosswind Rim Brake

by Weenie


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