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  1. #1
    Senior Member Rancid's Avatar
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    I can't seem to find any chatter about this bike

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/gravity/zilla.htm

    I know I know, everyone has an opinion about BD. Seems like a great deal though and would be pretty versatile. At the same though I wonder if its so odd it would be impractical for any thing other than commuting.

    I haven't been able to find a review or even mention of it any where, so what are your opinions and thoughts? I'm trying to decide if I should make this my new commuter/winter ride
    I've been here since 2004? I've never felt this old before.

  2. #2
    Mirror slap survivor
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    What's odd about it? It's an aluminum framed cross bike with discs. As long as you can put fenders and a rack on it, it should make a fine winter commuter.
    "When I'm on a bike, it's like I'm 14 again, racing off to the arcade with a pocket full of quarters."

  3. #3
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    Its too new, so no reviews yet. Be the first one.

    It will make a great commuting bike, IMO. I'd buy it, but I already have a frameset I am building as a foul weather comuter.
    "Cycling is for pleasure not penance"

  4. #4
    Senior Member Rancid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DVC45 View Post
    Its too new, so no reviews yet. Be the first one.
    you have a strong argument going there. I very well may purchase it, but first it has to still be on the market (and at that price) in about 2 months when I get back to the states
    I've been here since 2004? I've never felt this old before.

  5. #5
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Bike =

    A frame with a name on it and a bunch of parts bolted onto it.
    if you Know about the strata of components, then you can judge the package value.

    Direct = you are on your own, no dealer to do any service after the sale.

    already a decent mechanic, you may be fine..

    others have said, BD cuts corners to increase their profits.

    Good luck..

  6. #6
    Senior Member Rancid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Bike =

    A frame with a name on it and a bunch of parts bolted onto it.

    Direct = you are on your own, no dealer to do any service after the sale.

    already a decent mechanic, you may be fine..
    I can do my own maintenance okay, worked in a shop for a while. I was just curious if anyone new anything about it because I know they are pretty low-end parts (I'd never put them on a road, CC race bike or true mountain bike but I wanted to know if anyone had any experience with this particular arrangement of components- as in this setup on this frame
    I've been here since 2004? I've never felt this old before.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rancid View Post
    you have a strong argument going there. I very well may purchase it, but first it has to still be on the market (and at that price) in about 2 months when I get back to the states
    If you got the scratch now, get it and have someone babysit it until you make it back.

    Looks like a 29er that they put a rigid fork and drops on. Saw one eyelet on the fork for a fender; the rear has a braze on for a rack up top, looks like rack and fender would have to share at the drop out. Also looks like you'd have to get a disc specific rack as well.

    Presta valves on a wide tire??
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  8. #8
    mook. rhammons's Avatar
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    I just ordered this bike and will report back with a basic review and some detailed photos. It's replacing my nearly 10 year old big box store, spongy, poorly-suspended mountain bike that I've just recently started using as a commuter/non-technical trail rider. I've been stuck with a tight budget and tough decisions on exactly what I want, but needed to upgrade from my current ride as I've really been bitten by the biking bug as of this past summer. I managed to put over 400 miles on it, and burned off about 20 lbs in just the last few months. I've been back and forth with performance hybrids, entry level cx and mtb's. This thing seems like the best of everything, and at a price I could afford. It should be here Monday, and I plan to take it into my LBS for a tuning and truing before I hit the paths. Hopefully the weather holds out for a while so I can break it in next weekend.

  9. #9
    Senior Member canyoneagle's Avatar
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    Awesome - I look forward to hearing your impressions. Looks like it'll be a really fun bike with alot of utility/versatility.
    Currently one bike: Singular Gryphon do-it all bike with Nuvinci N360
    Coming soon (winter project) Ciocc Designer '84 mod build
    Temporary (on loan from a buddy): 1985 Raleigh Prestige

  10. #10
    mook. rhammons's Avatar
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    So, I got it, and immediately took it to the LBS to be assembled and tuned. I'd hoped to be riding it this past weekend, and that didn't happen. I was told by the LBS that I'd have it Friday, then I went in on Friday and they said they ran into a snag getting the front disc brake and caliper fitting right. They were going to try to do some work with washers over the weekend, but today I get a call that they had another mechanic look at it, and they are 100% certain that the weld is off on the tab that the caliper mounts to. BUMMER. So now I am trying to reach out to BikesDirect to get a replacement fork, with a properly welded tab. Hopefully I'll get a reply to my email soon. I'm so completely bummed about this. Saturday was perfect bike weather. My current bike's brakes actually just went out and I'd rather not replace/repair them in hopes that I could be riding this guy. Bah.

  11. #11
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhammons View Post
    So now I am trying to reach out to BikesDirect to get a replacement fork, with a properly welded tab. Hopefully I'll get a reply to my email soon.
    Good luck.
    "Cycling is for pleasure not penance"

  12. #12
    not a role model JeffS's Avatar
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    I wonder what BD has against posting the full geometry of their bikes.

  13. #13
    mook. rhammons's Avatar
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    Some updates on this situation...

    So far, everything's been handled very positively. BikesDirect was immediately pro-active and worked with my mechanic to determine/verify the problem. Yesterday we sent over the required photos for their records (it's policy, and kind of silly, but oh well) and I stopped by the shop to see the bad weld myself and I'm so glad I did as I noticed another issue. There was pitting in the paint on the top tube of the frame. My mechanic explained it was a paint defect, not a shipping/build mishap, so I raised the flag with the rep. at BD and he didn't hesitate to offer to replace the frame/fork all at once (it'd be easier that way anyhow since that's how they sell them).

    As an upside to all of this, their replacements happen to be a flat black, and not the high gloss that they had sent me originally. It's honestly what I thought I was getting to begin with since the only photos of this bike in black are of the flat black frames they have on bikeisland.com and ebay. So that's something to be aware of if you're considering buying this bike in black - it's super glossy.

  14. #14
    Senior Member canyoneagle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffS View Post
    I wonder what BD has against posting the full geometry of their bikes.
    Most of their bikes do have geometry information. I agree that the data shown for this bike is pretty lame.
    Currently one bike: Singular Gryphon do-it all bike with Nuvinci N360
    Coming soon (winter project) Ciocc Designer '84 mod build
    Temporary (on loan from a buddy): 1985 Raleigh Prestige

  15. #15
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhammons View Post
    Some updates on this situation...

    So far, everything's been handled very positively. BikesDirect was immediately pro-active and worked with my mechanic to determine/verify the problem. Yesterday we sent over the required photos for their records (it's policy, and kind of silly, but oh well) and I stopped by the shop to see the bad weld myself and I'm so glad I did as I noticed another issue. There was pitting in the paint on the top tube of the frame. My mechanic explained it was a paint defect, not a shipping/build mishap, so I raised the flag with the rep. at BD and he didn't hesitate to offer to replace the frame/fork all at once (it'd be easier that way anyhow since that's how they sell them).

    As an upside to all of this, their replacements happen to be a flat black, and not the high gloss that they had sent me originally. It's honestly what I thought I was getting to begin with since the only photos of this bike in black are of the flat black frames they have on bikeisland.com and ebay. So that's something to be aware of if you're considering buying this bike in black - it's super glossy.
    Every time I read a story where there is an issue with a BD bike, it seems like their customer service is superb. I am sure that, like all customer service departments, they have had their issues. But over all, they seem to be very, very good.

  16. #16
    Senior Member canyoneagle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhammons View Post
    Some updates on this situation...

    So far, everything's been handled very positively. BikesDirect was immediately pro-active and worked with my mechanic to determine/verify the problem. Yesterday we sent over the required photos for their records (it's policy, and kind of silly, but oh well) and I stopped by the shop to see the bad weld myself and I'm so glad I did as I noticed another issue. There was pitting in the paint on the top tube of the frame. My mechanic explained it was a paint defect, not a shipping/build mishap, so I raised the flag with the rep. at BD and he didn't hesitate to offer to replace the frame/fork all at once (it'd be easier that way anyhow since that's how they sell them).

    As an upside to all of this, their replacements happen to be a flat black, and not the high gloss that they had sent me originally. It's honestly what I thought I was getting to begin with since the only photos of this bike in black are of the flat black frames they have on bikeisland.com and ebay. So that's something to be aware of if you're considering buying this bike in black - it's super glossy.
    Good to hear it.
    I've had two good experiences with BD (value for money, timing, etc), and the one time I called with an inquiry I found them to be prompt, professional and very friendly.
    Currently one bike: Singular Gryphon do-it all bike with Nuvinci N360
    Coming soon (winter project) Ciocc Designer '84 mod build
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  17. #17
    nashcommguy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schwinnrider View Post
    What's odd about it? It's an aluminum framed cross bike with discs. As long as you can put fenders and a rack on it, it should make a fine winter commuter.
    Yeah, I agree. This was my BD buy a few years ago: http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/..._cross_cx2.htm It was 500.00 when purchased. Swapped out the CX tires for some SMPs. Added lights, bags, rack, clipless pedals, frame pump, tool-kit...all stuff I had. Over 17,0000 miles now w/one overhaul and regular maintenance. It's a hoss.

    Last year I started using it in tandem w/my fg set up for light commuting/utility. The mileage count has slowed because of using the 2nd bike, but it's still a very dependable ride.

  18. #18
    Senior Member jmio's Avatar
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    i have bought 3 bikes from them, never a problem. good company to deal with. i wouldn't hesitate to buy from them again if I was to ever buy another bike.

  19. #19
    mook. rhammons's Avatar
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    More news from the BikesDirect.com front. I received my replacement frame and fork and it has multiple issues with paint and finish, as well as a bent mount for the derailer hanger. Going to see what the LBS can do, but this is unacceptably bad. Good customer service or not, this is ridiculous.

  20. #20
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhammons View Post
    More news from the BikesDirect.com front. I received my replacement frame and fork and it has multiple issues with paint and finish, as well as a bent mount for the derailer hanger. Going to see what the LBS can do, but this is unacceptably bad. Good customer service or not, this is ridiculous.
    I would ask for a refund instead. Why bring it to your LBS? They can't fix the paint issue.
    "Cycling is for pleasure not penance"

  21. #21
    mook. rhammons's Avatar
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    I was having it assembled, trued and tuned there to begin with; they've been stuck helping me out of this matter the entire time.
    Last edited by rhammons; 11-22-11 at 02:02 PM. Reason: typo.

  22. #22
    Senior Member
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    If your LBS has been helping you deal with this, that is a good place.
    About 50% of the shops around here won't touch "online" bikes. They are specifically avoiding situations like this, I imagine.

  23. #23
    mook. rhammons's Avatar
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    Yeah, they're being really good sports about it, giving me lots of advice, and have even spoke with the rep at bikesdirect multiple times now. I'm just irate at this whole situation now, and don't want to be out all of this time and money just un-assembling/packing it back up, shipping the bike and additional frameset back for simply a refund.

  24. #24
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfwerx View Post
    If your LBS has been helping you deal with this, that is a good place.
    About 50% of the shops around here won't touch "online" bikes. They are specifically avoiding situations like this, I imagine.
    It's not clear what situation they are avoiding. Service work that is paid for by the hour?

    As long as they can make a profit at whatever hourly rate they charge, why not?

    It would seem like they can make about as much money straightening out a BD bike as they can selling you a new bike. There was a thread earlier about this, and the responders who worked at LBS seemed to think that with the margins they can charge, per hour service work is likely more profitable than selling you a new bike.

    If there are snafus on a new bike the LBS bike sold, then diagnosing and straightening out the issues comes out of the LBS profit. If there are a lot of snafus on a BD bike, that's more service work for the LBS - you pay for the diagnosis.

    If they can make as much/more money on a BD bike as they can make on selling a new bike, and they don't need to risk any capital, it seems like a good deal for the LBS.

  25. #25
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    the one shop here, copes with the Costco bikes, but not the Wally World BSO stuff
    "Magna" in local case.

    they are as often abandoned as they are picked up, and the work paid for.
    in those cases even taking it in without a customer pre pay is a loss..

    lots of Bla Bla on bikes direct stuff, YGWYPF, still applies.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 11-27-11 at 02:05 PM.

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