In support of the local bike shop

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howdenbiker
Posts: 9
Joined: 3 Oct 2014, 11:26pm

In support of the local bike shop

Postby howdenbiker » 21 Oct 2014, 8:23pm

I bought my Forme bike from a large cycle shop after seeing it advertised on line. My LBS was doing some great deals too but never the right bike or the right size!

I have the advantage of looking out of my office window straight at the LBS on the other side of the road. I noticed yesterday that they had some SPD shoes on sale and today went back and bought some pedals, then inquired about the price of some Schwalbe Marathons.

I had my bike with me so the LBS owner replaced the pedals for me, fitted the cleats on the shoes, showed me how to adjust and wear them and replaced both tyres, how much did he charge for labour, zilch.
Of course I could have saved a few pounds, waited several days and spent two or three hours fitting them, I know what I prefer!!
PS the LBS is Selby Bike Centre, North Yorkshire.

Penfolds11
Posts: 127
Joined: 9 Jan 2013, 12:08pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby Penfolds11 » 22 Oct 2014, 2:47pm

I try to follow the principle of "use it or lose it" as much as I can with local businesses.

I'm often being pointed to this or that large online retailer for bargain-priced products and I do buy things that way. However I also try to buy as much as I can through my LBS even if it costs me more money. I know the people who work in my LBS and I know that my money is a small part of them earning their living. My newest bike was bought there last summer for about £50 more than Evans were selling it for, and I'd test-ridden it from the nearest Evans shop before ordering it from the LBS.

Although using my LBS does cost me maybe 10-15% more (depending on the item) than anywhere else, I'd certainly miss it if it was gone and if that were to happen I wouldn't like to think that taking my custom to the cheapest online provider was a contributory factor to my LBS closing down.

landsurfer
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Joined: 27 Oct 2012, 9:13pm
Location: Rotherham

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby landsurfer » 22 Oct 2014, 3:16pm

Universal Cycle Centre Maltby.
I don't spend a lot.
Bits and pieces for my 80's bikes which I prefer to more modern stuff ( yes I've tried them), and always sound advice.
The odd bit no one else will stock, and a wonderful sense of being a "proper bike shop".
Only been one place else with that feel, Charlie Alexander's shop in Cardiff... many years ago.
Beautiful Carlton frames hanging on racks .... Top Shop ..
Be a do'er, not a watcher. Be a Sceaphierde, not a Sheep.
Mike Hall, Jenny Graham .. Respect. .... The Road Goes On Forever !

reohn2
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Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby reohn2 » 22 Oct 2014, 5:35pm

A good LBS indeed,I hope you'll be dropping him a packet or two of decent biscuits and a box of tea bags,Yorkshire tea of course :wink:
-----------------------------------------------------------
I cycle therefore I am.

Flinders
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Joined: 10 Mar 2009, 6:47pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby Flinders » 22 Oct 2014, 8:47pm

My LBS is a great help to me, and will order stuff they don't routinely stock, or pick things up for me specially from other wholesalers if I don't mind waiting a few days until they next go. As someone who isn't really up for doing more than basic work on my bike, and who doesn't spend hours reading bike mags learning about what's available, I really need their help and advice, so don't mind (sometimes) paying a little more for the things I buy; I feel that is only paying them fairly for the extra service I get.
They don't recommend the most expensive solution to a problem, but the most appropriate one for me. They know my abilities and what's worth me having and what isn't.

Psamathe
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Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:56pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby Psamathe » 22 Oct 2014, 8:58pm

I don't buy much stuff and what I do I want very specific stuff my LBS does not stock (so internet gets my business).

But I do use LBS for all the work on my bike and it makes me feel a bit disappointed/worried. I'm still something of a novice and an learning about how to do much of the work on my bike. So when something needs doing I visit my LBS and they let me watch and explain what they are doing - not as a "teaching session" but more so I can appreciate what is stuff I should be doing and is easy and stuff best sorted by a professional.

But the disappointment/worry comes in their charges. Took my bike in for it's 1st service and they went over it, straightened a slightly out disk, explained what they were checking, etc. and charged me £5 (for everything). When rear mech. cable broke, took it in and they had a real fiddle getting the short broken end out of the STIs. Total bill £6. Disk brake adjustment, cleaning, show me how to adjust (plus check over everything to see if service needed) total bill £3. And those bills are far far too cheap. I can't see how they will stay in business with such low charges. But they are busy, have been around for years, so maybe they know their business better than I do.

Ian

Flinders
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Joined: 10 Mar 2009, 6:47pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby Flinders » 24 Oct 2014, 9:16pm

Even back in the day when I used to do all the work on my bike when I commuted in London, I still used to have a full service on it once a year for the things that were awkward to do in a bedsit when I hadn't the money for lots of specialist tools or a stand. It also meant they checked for anything that was wearing with a more experienced eye.

Now things on my bike are more complicated and I have even less time to tinker with the bike, though I don't commute, I still do the same. Because of the grit and salt and stuff on the rural roads here in the winter, when I do most of my cycling, most years I need to have bearings replaced somewhere or other, and I know they will check them all and replace them properly, regreasing anything that needs it and getting everything back to the right 'tightness'. They check everything, spoke tensions, the lot. I get peace of mind and don't have to learn lots of things I'd forget by the next time, fiddle around ordering bearing races and working out sizes for titchy little parts the LBS can just pick out of a drawer while my bike is in bits and unusable, and buy a shedload of tools I'd only use once a year. I still do basic stuff myself of course, like chain cleaning, etc., on a routine basis. It doesn't cost a fortune, and I reckon is worth every penny to me.

blackbike
Posts: 2492
Joined: 11 Jul 2009, 3:21pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby blackbike » 24 Oct 2014, 10:29pm

Local bike shops are irrelevant to me now.

Now I can get everything cheaper and quicker online.

Any maintenance needed is easy to learn online too.

To me bike shops are like banks and post offices .

Flinders
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Joined: 10 Mar 2009, 6:47pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby Flinders » 24 Oct 2014, 11:05pm

I just haven't the time to spend learning how to do everything, and the LBS have far more experience than I could ever get at spotting problems and knowing what solutions are available. For me, as my time for bikes is limited, I'd rather spend it on the bike. If there were about four more days in every week, I would probably enjoy learning it all. :cry:

Mind you, I also don't do internet banking, and I use the PO a lot..............

pete75
Posts: 11985
Joined: 24 Jul 2007, 2:37pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby pete75 » 25 Oct 2014, 11:47am

howdenbiker wrote:I had my bike with me so the LBS owner replaced the pedals for me, fitted the cleats on the shoes, showed me how to adjust and wear them and replaced both tyres, how much did he charge for labour, zilch.
Of course I could have saved a few pounds, waited several days and spent two or three hours fitting them, I know what I prefer!!
PS the LBS is Selby Bike Centre, North Yorkshire.


That's the way for an LBS to compete, by adding value to components sold.

Is that the shop next to Wetherspoons? The lady there was certainly very helpful with securely parking our bikes when we stopped at the spoons for breakfast on a ride back from York in teh summer.

pete75
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Joined: 24 Jul 2007, 2:37pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby pete75 » 26 Oct 2014, 8:55am

blackbike wrote:
To me bike shops are like banks and post offices .


How have you got on buying an inner tube from the latter pair?

cjchambers
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Joined: 29 Jun 2008, 9:55pm
Location: Hartlepool

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby cjchambers » 26 Oct 2014, 10:30am

The LBS I used as an adolescent had a permanent special offer - free anecdote with every purchase! He had all sorts of obscure NOS stuff - woods valves innards, obsolete brake blocks, all very useful for my attempts at vintage restorations.

I went back there when I last visited my parents. It was under new management and didn't even have a QR skewer in stock . . .

blackbike
Posts: 2492
Joined: 11 Jul 2009, 3:21pm

Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby blackbike » 26 Oct 2014, 11:40am

My local bike shops seem to have become smaller versions of places like Evans of the Edinburgh Cycle Co-op, They seem to cater for the newer, affluent cyclist who doesn't know too much as yet, are not too worried by their high prices, and are an easy touch when it comes to being impressed with all the latest trends, fashions and fads.

That's where the money is, and it must be hard to make a LBS pay at all. However it means they are not very useful to me.

Two or three years ago I did ask my LBS about a repair, and the assistant quoted me an extremely high price. When I expressed dismay, he told me, strictly off the record, that his boss wasn't interested in repairs, and neither were many customers.

If I was a low mileage cyclist, doing 20 miles or so a week pottering about town, I'd probably take my bike to a LBS for a service now and again, and buy the odd spare part. But, as I have lots of bikes with expensive bits which get worn out quickly by my higher mileage and off road use, I'd be bankrupt if I paid LBS prices for parts, repairs or bikes.

PH
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Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby PH » 26 Oct 2014, 6:47pm

Penfolds11 wrote:My newest bike was bought there last summer for about £50 more than Evans were selling it for, and I'd test-ridden it from the nearest Evans shop before ordering it from the LBS.

My money goes to those who offer the service I want, big or small, high street or online, a complete mixture from the venture capital owned mega store to the one man band wheel specialist. What I'd never do is get the service from one place and give another my business, whatever the price, it just seems so wrong to me.
Even the smallest place is a business not a charity, I don't owe them a living, all businesses have to adapt or die. There is enough money sloshing around in cycling at the moment for more businesses than ever to thrive, they may be different to those that exist today, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

townbikemark
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Re: In support of the local bike shop

Postby townbikemark » 31 Oct 2014, 7:19pm

Given that I'm unemployed at the moment, price is everything, so it's Wilkinson's most of the time. The bike is my transport...

Other than that, the type of bikes I own and the cycling I do, the typical LBS in this country is of very limited use to me, but there are exceptions - I actually found one that services Shimano Nexus hubs instead of having to send it back to Madison's in Milton Keynes - I live in Hampshire and the bike shop in question is in Caversham near Reading. AW Cycles if anyone's interested. At the moment I'm not confident in doing this work myself.
Last edited by townbikemark on 31 Oct 2014, 7:24pm, edited 1 time in total.
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