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  1. #1
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    The Cost Of Cheap..........

    As I sit here, drenched in sweat, looking at my new Soma, drinking too much lukewarm sweet tea, I only wish the sweat came from riding the bike instread of pushing it for three bloody miles!!!!!

    Two weeks ago I ordered the Soma frame but not their matching fork, hoping mine would fit. Friday the 7th the frame came in and the fork didn't fit....too short. Yesterday it finally arrived with some extra help from Soma, whom I can't say enough good things about. Just before closing at the lbs a flood of peolple came in wanting shiny new bikes, so I kept waiting. Long after closing
    the owner told me to take it for a ride and I was quite pleased. Throughout the process he had told me that my brakes were not really 'long reach', but kinda long reach and that I should replace them before I rode. He told me this several times but being cheap I said I would have to make do for a bit.

    Last night I rode the neighborhood, tweaking and checking, and being very proud of my new purchase.

    Today I starded off on a thirty mile shakedown and two blocks from the apt. I suddenly had that squishy feeling in the rear and looked down to see a flat.

    After changing it at the apt. I started off again.

    Did I mention that the lbs owner said I should change the brakes?

    About three miles from the apt., during a slow speed turn...BLAM.... It was loud enough for me to start looking for cover....and then I had that same squishy feeling.
    Turning the bike upside down I realized that I hadn't just blown a tube....I blew a two inch long gash in the sidewall.

    Did I mention that the lbs owner said I should change the brakes?

    As I looked at things I understood that my weight must have squished the tire to make it rub against the brake pad when I applied the brakes.

    So here I sit, getting ready to give Nashbar or Performance another two hundred dollars for the right brakes, and having learned that while bike shorts are great for riding, three miles of walking in them have left me chaffed in places I didn't even know I had.

    Did I mention that the lbs owner said I should change the brakes?

    Oh, the bike is great and I can't thank Soma enough for the frame and their help.
    Last edited by LastPlace; 07-16-06 at 03:32 PM.

  2. #2
    Banned. George W. Diego's Avatar
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    You might want to change the brakes.

  3. #3
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    + 1,000
    centexwoody
    They're beautiful handsome machines that translate energy into joy.

  4. #4
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    You, my friend, have a very rare opportunity in front of you. You can forge a relationship with your LBS owner that will serve you well for years to come.... if you play it right. Here's what you need to do. First, do not get the brakes from a mail order house (I know you might save a few dollars, but in the long run, you'll save more by following this plan). Now get yourself a dozen donuts or a pizza, or a six pack of the LBS owner's favorite drink. Go the the LBS and proclaim that the owner that he/she is the smartest person you know. Make sure there are lots of people around when you say this. Tell the owner that from now on you're going to pay very close attention to the excellent advice given at this shop. Indicate that you really appreciate the fact that the owner made several attempts to tell you about the brakes. Finally, ask the owner to help you choose a set of replacement brakes that you can afford. By this time, you'll have paid proper respect to the alpha leader in the LBS and earned a place in the pack. While you may start out at the bottom of the pack, at least you'll now be included as a member of the pack. BTW, as we all know packs tend to take good care of their members. So, there's a pretty good chance that you'll be treated fairly.
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright

  5. #5
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NOS88
    By this time, you'll have paid proper respect to the alpha leader in the LBS and earned a place in the pack. While you may start out at the bottom of the pack, at least you'll now be included as a member of the pack. BTW, as we all know packs tend to take good care of their members. So, there's a pretty good chance that you'll be treated fairly.
    If you are joking -ha, ha.

    If you are serious - does it really take such servile behavior and sucking up to expect professional service from LBS personnel? If so I wouldn't give ANY respect to the the LBS Alpha Leader or his obsequious customers.

  6. #6
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
    If you are joking -ha, ha.

    If you are serious - does it really take such servile behavior and sucking up to expect professional service from LBS personnel? If so I wouldn't give ANY respect to the the LBS Alpha Leader or his obsequious customers.
    Is that a cat in your avatar? Well, I guess there's just no way to explain that knowing you acted foolishly is not something for which one should be ashamed. At the same time, here's a person who tried several times to save LastPlace's ass. If showing the LBS owner that you acknowledge what he tried to do and that you appreciate it is "sucking up", then the feline side is too strong. Your comment is just what a cat might say, and while I appreciate cats, I know I'm more of a pack animal by nature.

    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright

  7. #7
    Lincoln, CA Mojo Slim's Avatar
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    What kind of pizza?

  8. #8
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    darned good advice IMHO - and it is NOT 'sucking up' if that relationship keeps your bike safe to ride...
    centexwoody
    They're beautiful handsome machines that translate energy into joy.

  9. #9
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    I brake for blowouts......

    Thanks for the replies, but I will probably just order some Shimano R600's from somewhere. Since Performance and Nashbar don't show them does anyone else have any ideas as to where to get them? I am going to take the opportunity to go from 700x28's to 700x32's to soften the ride a bit.....since I do have to buy at least one new tire.

    The lbs is a two man operation and are great guys that have helped me a great deal throughout this process but I will tell them when they open on Tuesday.

  10. #10
    Senior Member CrossChain's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=LastPlace]Thanks for the replies, but I will probably just order some Shimano R600's from somewhere. Since Performance and Nashbar don't show them does anyone else have any ideas as to where to get them? I am going to take the opportunity to go from 700x28's to 700x32's to soften the ride a bit.....since I do have to buy at least one new tire. QUOTE]

    Check either Harris Cyclery or Rivendell Bicycles .... they sell Shimano calipers (R600 included-- $180 the set at Harris) that should work for your "long reach" needs. Riv's BR600 run $115 the set (!) If money is an issue, you might try the RX100 Tiagra calipers (long reach... $80 the set) that Rivendell spec'ed on my Romulus. They're good at stopping, modulating, and holding their adjustment, look fine, and .......... are a good value for the price.

    Harris Cyclery page: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/brakes.html#calipers

    Rivendell page: http://www.rivbike.com/webalog/brakes/15094.html

    Your fork, being new, probably has a recess for the mounting bolt, but good to check it first before ordering.

    Given life's ironies, a rough start getting your new beauty airborne probably insures you'll end up flying high on her.
    Last edited by CrossChain; 07-16-06 at 08:49 PM.
    Riding and aging don't get easier, you just get slower at slowing down.] (FiftyPlus observation inspired by G. Lemond.)

  11. #11
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NOS88
    You, my friend, have a very rare opportunity in front of you. You can forge a relationship with your LBS owner that will serve you well for years to come.... if you play it right. Here's what you need to do. First, do not get the brakes from a mail order house (I know you might save a few dollars, but in the long run, you'll save more by following this plan). Now get yourself a dozen donuts or a pizza, or a six pack of the LBS owner's favorite drink. Go the the LBS and proclaim that the owner that he/she is the smartest person you know. Make sure there are lots of people around when you say this. Tell the owner that from now on you're going to pay very close attention to the excellent advice given at this shop. Indicate that you really appreciate the fact that the owner made several attempts to tell you about the brakes. Finally, ask the owner to help you choose a set of replacement brakes that you can afford. By this time, you'll have paid proper respect to the alpha leader in the LBS and earned a place in the pack. While you may start out at the bottom of the pack, at least you'll now be included as a member of the pack. BTW, as we all know packs tend to take good care of their members. So, there's a pretty good chance that you'll be treated fairly.
    +1

    My Alpha leader at my LBS happens to be a lady - the owner!

    But, the same principles apply.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  12. #12
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    These guys have them also: http://www.cambriabike.com/shopexd.asp?id=9617. I just put a set on my Sequoia and what a difference. They lock up both the front and the rear. Great brakes.

    Brian

  13. #13
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    Rivendell...........

    Thanks for all the help. Rivendell had them in stock and they were 20 to 50 dollars cheaper than any other place I found them. Before shipping they were $115/pair. Shipping from the left coast may take a bit longer but thats life.

    Anyone have a favorite 700x32 tire?

  14. #14
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    I wouldn't be talkin about 'cheap' around here. Ya might get flamed. Or worse. bk

  15. #15
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    ?

    bkaapcke,

    Huh?

  16. #16
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    I wouldn't be talkin about 'cheap' around here. Ya might get flamed. Or worse. bk
    Quote Originally Posted by LastPlace
    bkaapcke,

    Huh?
    We find it best not to feed the resident troll.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  17. #17
    Fred E Fenders fthomas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LastPlace
    Thanks for the replies, but I will probably just order some Shimano R600's from somewhere. Since Performance and Nashbar don't show them does anyone else have any ideas as to where to get them? I am going to take the opportunity to go from 700x28's to 700x32's to soften the ride a bit.....since I do have to buy at least one new tire.

    The lbs is a two man operation and are great guys that have helped me a great deal throughout this process but I will tell them when they open on Tuesday.
    You are fortunate you didn't blow more than a tire: rim, wheel, and even a bent frame. Not to mention the fact that the brake / tire failure could have caused a
    serious crash with injury to more than your pride.

    I think you owe the LBS the business for the brakes and new tires. What you save from the big box mail order store may not be that great after shipping and for sure the 2 Man LBS can and probably will give you good service and help in the future.

    The Obsequious Customer

  18. #18
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    Tektro has been convinced to make some nice LOOONG reach brake calipers at affordable prices. Do a search and find Kogswell. Matthew, the boss, may have some in stock. They are very reasonably priced. I have the Shimano 57mm that were at one time sold by Nashbar at a much more reasonable price than nowadays....at these prices I would go Tektro...nothing wrong with them. I am glad that you were not hurt!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by fthomas
    I think you owe the LBS the business for the brakes and new tires.
    +1

  20. #20
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    Rivendell

    Thanks guys but I ordered some from Rivendell last night.

    As for the lbs.....they get waaaay too much of my money and will get more in the future but the fastest way to get riding was Rivendell.

    Yes, it could have been worse. It could have been a front wheel under hard braking going down hill.

  21. #21
    Senior Curmudgeon
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    EDIT: OOPS - I didn't see the above post before entering the following. Good luck with your new brakes, and for future use consider the advice below.

    The suck-up isn't needed. The opportunity to forge a long-term relationship with the LBS is REAL, though. Take the wrenches some food & let the LBS change the brakes. The event will confirm your status to both the LBS owner and the LBS wrenches as a "valued customer." Henceforth, when you visit the LBS, you'll be greeted by name, you'll be given quick, inexpensive, and quality service, and you'll appreciate your own wisdom in knowing that all this pleasurable service was purchased for a small sum of money corresponding to the price difference between a set of mail order brakes and the LBS brakes plus the cost of a bag of cookies. Rarely in life will you get so much for so little.

  22. #22
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    I think you owe the LBS the business for the brakes and new tires.
    +2

    I'm sorry to say this, but I can't believe that after you've posted a lesson about the cost of cheap, and had the good fortune to escape serious injury, you're making the same mistake again.

    Return the Rivendell stuff, go back to the LBS, pay them well-deserved money for their products and more importantly for their expertise, and do so gratefully (not obsequiously) (and don't mention the Rivendell purchase to them, or bring it to them)

  23. #23
    Not So Senior Member jisaak's Avatar
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    Not sure what may work for everyone else but last year I ran into the chap from our LBS at the pub, bought him a beer since he has always been a wealth of knowledge and assistance to me. Now it's a first name basis and this past Saturday I went in to look at compact cranksets and I got a 15% discount on my purchase.
    What goes around....

  24. #24
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    I have a very good relationship with my LBS and the amount I spend with them- I should have. On my normal purchases- Like around $200 per month- I always get a discount. On top of that I always get advice on suitability of parts, whether there is a cheaper alternative that is just as good or that I should really be looking at a better quality than I am contemplating cos the bit I have my wallet set on is Crap.

    When it comes to major purchases- I do look on the net for the parts I want- Compare the writeups and then I look around for the price. I always give the LBS the chance to compete on price. They most often do, but Look at an item for $100. on the net I can get it for $80 plus postage of $6. I go back to the LBS and the best they can do is $90. I buy from the LBS. Even on more expensive items. A few years ago I bought a set of wheels from my wheel builder for $500. They had to go back because I was not happy with the spokes and No charge for putting the correct ones in but I lost the wheels for 10 days. Did not even think about the LBS but the next pair I asked the LBS to quote and it was $550. But this was for a stronger rim- prices had gone up and I knew they had a good wheelbuilder. The LBS got the 2nd set of wheels. That was 2 years ago and they have just gone in for a check of the hubs and retrue and tension. Bad news as they did not have the Pawls in stock so I cannot pick the wheels up till Thursday. I needed 4 new spokes and the rim tapes should be replaced.
    If I were to send the wheels back to my wheel builder then it would cost $25 carriage and I would lose them for 14 days. Rebuild fee would not be any different but then there is return packing aswell.

    I am a competent mechanic so I should be able to buy cheaper on the net, I should be able to get the parts quickly, but I would lose out on that personal service that I rate so highly. Unfortunately my LBS is struggling so I may be forced to buy my parts mail order. Hope it doesn't happen but until then- My LBS Rules.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

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