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Thread: Bikes Direct???

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    Senior Member Bigboxeraf's Avatar
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    Bikes Direct???

    I'm currently riding an old diamond back allure. I picked it up cheap 2 months after I quit smoking. I wasn't sure if i was going to get serious about riding. Well I'm getting serious, I plan to go to March with the allure. I pan on spending $1000 to $1200 on a new bike with accesories. Has anyone here bought from bikes direct? Are motobecane and mercier a reputable labels? Being a clyde am I better off at my LBS. Any feed back is greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    fishologist cohophysh's Avatar
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    go to the LBS, because you will be able to test ride the bikes and find which one fits you better. Just do a search on bikesdirect in BF, there is a lot of nay sayers regarding BD. You can get a nice Felt/JAMIS/TREK for your price and get the service from your LBS. Depending on how much you weigh, you might need to upgrade the wheels.
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  3. #3
    Queen of France Indolent58's Avatar
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    There are probably hundreds of threads on Bikesdirect on Bike Forums filled with violent opinions. Bikesdirect imports bikes from Taiwan and other Asian countries from some of the same sources as more prominent name brands. Motobecane and Mercier were European brands years ago but they faded from the market. The trade names are now used primarily as house brands for Bikesdirect (BD).

    The deal is that BD generally offers a substanially higher grade of components at a given price point than major brands, hung on a fine quality if generic frame. The catch is that they ship you the bike in the state that most bikes arrive at a bikeshop - mostly assembled but needing final assembly and adjustment before it's fit to ride.

    If you know what you want, and BD has a bike that closely matches that it can be a very good deal. If you are not prepared to assemble and adjust the bike yourself, you can pay the LBS to do it. As for being a clyde, the only thing that typically matters there is wheels, and few bikes of any brand come stock with wheels speced for larger riders. The wheels that come with the bike might turn out to work fine, but if you go with BD you could spend some of your savings on an upgrade.

    If you are someone who expects to make a lot of use of the free adjustments offered by the LBS for bikes purchased from them, then neither BD or any other online source is going to be a good choice.

  4. #4
    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    I will probably build my next bike, just for something to do, until then I will use my LBS. Even though my LBS is over an hour away, I will use them and I will send others to him. True Wheel in Council Bluffs completely blew away the competition in Omaha and the other stores in Council Bluffs, by actually wanting to talk to me and working with me. I have recommended them to quite a few other people and I know of one that bought another bike from them after talking to me about them.

    Having and LBS is a good thing to have around. The problem is, most of them are small and can't keep up with the volume that someone like bikesdirect.com. If you want to have an LBS in the future, support them now.

    That is my opinion.

    If you do all of your own bike work, buy elsewhere if you think it is worth the savings. If you can't adjust the bikes brakes, derailer, true wheels, replace spokes, etc........ Then support your LBS.
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  5. #5
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Depending on who you ask, BD is either a godsend or the warehouse of the Devil himself.

    Here's my take on BD: You don't get the opportunity to test ride any bikes from them. You don't get any extended service contracts through them. You don't get any swap-out upgrade options with them (the bike only comes in the listed configuration, that's it.) You save a truckload of money because you are getting a bike, and only a bike... unlike the LBS which is going to give you service/repair/maybe even free stuff like brake pads or stock tires for the life of the bike.

    If you're going to go with a BD purchase (I'm pretty certain that's where my next ride is coming from) then there are ways to support your LBS, even though you're not buying the bike from them.

    • Go get a fitting done at your LBS
    • Buy your upgrade parts, like stronger wheels, from the LBS
    • If you're unsure of your mechanical ability, have the assembly done or checked by the pros at your LBS
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Indolent58 View Post
    There are probably hundreds of threads on Bikesdirect on Bike Forums filled with violent opinions. Bikesdirect imports bikes from Taiwan and other Asian countries from some of the same sources as more prominent name brands. Motobecane and Mercier were European brands years ago but they faded from the market. The trade names are now used primarily as house brands for Bikesdirect (BD).

    The deal is that BD generally offers a substanially higher grade of components at a given price point than major brands, hung on a fine quality if generic frame. The catch is that they ship you the bike in the state that most bikes arrive at a bikeshop - mostly assembled but needing final assembly and adjustment before it's fit to ride.

    If you know what you want, and BD has a bike that closely matches that it can be a very good deal. If you are not prepared to assemble and adjust the bike yourself, you can pay the LBS to do it. As for being a clyde, the only thing that typically matters there is wheels, and few bikes of any brand come stock with wheels speced for larger riders. The wheels that come with the bike might turn out to work fine, but if you go with BD you could spend some of your savings on an upgrade.

    If you are someone who expects to make a lot of use of the free adjustments offered by the LBS for bikes purchased from them, then neither BD or any other online source is going to be a good choice.
    That's about the size of it. I am personally an LBS guy cause I like to touch and see and try what I buy before I fork over any $$$.
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

  7. #7
    Chubby super biker bdinger's Avatar
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    My PERSONAL opinion is that I'll stick with a LBS bought bike until (if?) I ever get below 200 pounds. I like to try out how they ride before I ride 'em, and I like the relationship built by dealing with a LBS instead of a online retailer. Said relationship definitely comes in handy when you are attempting to work through serious issues with your bike(s), which is something that I can't say about online retailers.

    Now, some may vary. Some LBSes are WORSE than online retailers, I've seen (but don't deal with) ones that are. In that case you'd be hard pressed to make a definitive case for either, but probably better off going with something that you can fix on your own without too many issues.

    I've also seem some BD bikes in person, and they are impressive. Granted these are the highest end BD bikes (their Record, Force and Dura-Ace Carbon bikes), but they really are beautiful and well put together machines.

    My summary is that you need to do what's best for you. Being a beginner, I'd suggest you err on the side of caution and avoid BD.

  8. #8
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdinger View Post
    I've also seem some BD bikes in person, and they are impressive. Granted these are the highest end BD bikes (their Record, Force and Dura-Ace Carbon bikes), but they really are beautiful and well put together machines.

    My summary is that you need to do what's best for you. Being a beginner, I'd suggest you err on the side of caution and avoid BD.

    The 'well put together' aspect of a BD bike is certainly a credit to the person or shop that built it, rather than to BD (since they ship partially assembled). I'm glad to hear you and many other people who are impressed with BD rides, especially the higher end bikes. Should the fit work out for me, I'm thinking about the Motobecane Century Team (full carbon/Dura-Ace) as my personal reward for getting down to my target weight.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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    My personal reward for getting down to my goal weight (only 18#'s to go!) is going to be a tattoo...the bike will come in the spring.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Bigboxeraf's Avatar
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    Cool thank you everybody, I'm still confused but most of my concerns were clarified addressed. I don't know which way im going to go yet, because I don't know what I'll weigh come march ( i'm 263 now). I'm also glad to know that if I order from BD I wont be getting a piece of junk. So thanks for all the help gang and I'm glad I found this forum. I'll check in with you guys later

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