Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Colorado Springs
Bikes: Surly Crosscheck
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I try to support my LBS, but I was amazed at how much they wanted for parts. I bought frame, bars, and a couple of other parts from them to give them business (and they're doing the build), but bought a lot of stuff on-line which saved me significant money. I also went around to local shops and pawed through their used bins--some good prices there. It's suprising how saving $10 here and $15 there adds up over the cost of building up a new bike.
I'm enough of a cheapskate that I was tempted to buy it all on-line, but I know I want local businesses to survive. In the end I didn't actually wind up saving a whole lot because whatever the LBS quoted me for parts I didn't go and find the same part for less, I just spent the same amount for a better part. The shop was very cool about me dropping off a handful of parts to them.
Just a few examples:
XT crankset 271 from LBS, 197 from local Performance Bike (220 on sale + 10% cause it just got swapped off another bike)
9 spd bar-ends 80 from LBS, 65 on-line
Cane Creek S-3 headset 50 from LBS, 30 on-line.
Yeah, shipping adds a bit, but I still got better parts or saved money by going on-line-even if I feel a bit sleezy.
I also agree that ebay is not always such a great deal--I looked carefully and in the end found that parts are often the same or even less from someplace like Jenson.
Good luck. Post some pics when it's all done.