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-   -   Another one over to the Dark Side (http://www.bikeforums.net/fifty-plus-50/645783-another-one-over-dark-side.html)

The Weak Link 05-16-10 02:55 PM

Another one over to the Dark Side
 
As I mentioned about 2 weeks ago, I bought a BD SS/FG for my son who just got back form school.

I couldn't be happier with the product. It's a very nice bike for $300. I know I sound like yet another shill for BD, but I'm pleased with how much bike you can buy these days if you're willing to put it together yourself.

The key is my son is pleased, too. As an inveterate MTBer he is amazed at how nimble and quick a road bike feels.

Yesterday I took him over to Cyclers Cafe and headed to points north and then west. This took us right through downtown, which felt deserted compared to Chicago. We took the long streets right on out to Shawnee Park, interrupted only by an occasional red light.

The pace was quicker than I usually ride out to the park, but my son on the way back had a testosterone surge and started hammering. I chose not to draft him (both for pride and because I didn't trust him) so we were going shoulder to shoulder at 20MPH or so through the mean streets of Louisville.

We pulled into Cyclers Cafe pretty much winded, my son having new-found respect for my cycling. Whenever we used to MTB, he'd leave me in the dust after about 45 seconds. Not this time.

We then enjoyed a nice lunch at the Cafe, my son downing some Powerade, and me, some Dos Equis.

I can tell it's only a matter of time before he 1) drops me like a rock, and 2) saves up some coin and gets a geared bike.

I can wait for both of those events.

cyclinfool 05-16-10 03:46 PM

Take this as a dose of motivation.

Louis 05-16-10 04:11 PM

Nice ride with your son...I'm sure he thinks his old man is way cool.:thumb:

Creeper that I am, I had to Google Cyclers Cafe. What a neat place; wish we had something like that around here.

roccobike 05-16-10 05:14 PM

BD is a great way to buy a bike if you're an "off the rack" built person combined with a knowledge of how to tune a bike. I ride with folks who have BD bikes and they perform just like LBS bikes. The trick is to know what size to buy and how to fit the bike to your personal needs. But if you can meet those two requirements, you're right, you can save some $$. Others that have posted on the Road forum have said that BD is pretty good about honoring the warranty.
There are others getting into the order by internet bike business, but I think BD is the one to go with. They have an established reputation that they are concerned about. That usually means they care about the customer.

dynodonn 05-16-10 06:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by roccobike (Post 10820389)
BD is a great way to buy a bike if you're an "off the rack" built person combined with a knowledge of how to tune a bike. I ride with folks who have BD bikes and they perform just like LBS bikes. The trick is to know what size to buy and how to fit the bike to your personal needs. But if you can meet those two requirements, you're right, you can save some $$. Others that have posted on the Road forum have said that BD is pretty good about honoring the warranty.
There are others getting into the order by internet bike business, but I think BD is the one to go with. They have an established reputation that they are concerned about. That usually means they care about the customer.

Things must have changed at BD, but "once bit, twice shy" is my feelings towards online bikes. I no longer wish put out the cash first, then assemble a bike when it arrives, and find out it has some shortcomings that one wasn't able to spot in a picture.
I'll say one thing, I happened to check out BD's website recently and one of the bikes I purchased from them, now has quite an array of closeup pictures available, even with that, it still wouldn't have shown the bike's frame flaw to my untrained eye at the time of my purchase.

wrk101 05-16-10 06:39 PM

Which model did you get from BD? How did the sizing turn out?

dynodonn 05-16-10 06:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wrk101 (Post 10820731)
Which model did you get from BD? How did the sizing turn out?

Not sure if this question is directed towards me or the OP's bike, if towards me, it was a Cafe Noir, and the sizing turned out fine.

The Weak Link 05-16-10 07:06 PM

I got the Motobecane Messenger. My son will be tough to fit in the
long run. He is almost 6 even but only has an inseam of 30".

I figure for $300, and considering this will be a college bike with possibly a limited life-span due to premature rippage, it's a good way to accustomize him to road biking. He can get a better fit with his next bike.

As for me, my next bike will either be something like a Rivendell or a recumbent.

The Weak Link 05-16-10 07:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dynodonn (Post 10820650)
Things must have changed at BD, but "once bit, twice shy" is my feelings towards online bikes. I no longer wish put out the cash first, then assemble a bike when it arrives, and find out it has some shortcomings that one wasn't able to spot in a picture.
I'll say one thing, I happened to check out BD's website recently and one of the bikes I purchased from them, now has quite an array of closeup pictures available, even with that, it still wouldn't have shown the bike's frame flaw to my untrained eye at the time of my purchase.

OK, I give. What was the fatal flaw?

trackhub 05-16-10 07:40 PM

He is fulfilling his destiny! Personally, I don't how riding a fixed gear became "The Dark Side", but I like it! :D The Dark side is power. The Dark Side is strong. And....

The Dark Side has very hot female Sith Lords like this one! Guys, she looks like she could kick Vader's butt and make him like it.

I just took an evening spin on my Gunnar Street Dog. I feel the power of the Dark side...

All that aside, congrats on your purchase for your son. You have chose wisely. Got Pics?

dynodonn 05-16-10 08:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Weak Link (Post 10820876)
OK, I give. What was the fatal flaw?

Too much flex in the stem and wheels, but also having it in the bottom bracket area was the fatal blow for keeping the bike in the stable, and I eventually had to put it down, better than let it continue collecting dust hanging in the rafters. The good news is that I was able to salvage some components off the Noir to upgrade my newest LBS commuter, with several hundred miles now logged on it.
Glad to hear about your experience with your son, and on the BD bike score.

Tom Bombadil 05-17-10 10:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Weak Link (Post 10819957)
We then enjoyed a nice lunch at the Cafe, my son downing some Powerade, and me, some Dos Equis.


What else would the Most Fascinating Man on Bike Forums drink?

Retro Grouch 05-17-10 10:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Weak Link (Post 10820865)
As for me, my next bike will either be something like a Rivendell or a recumbent.

When you mentioned "the dark side" I assumed you had already bought a recumbent.

cyclinfool 05-17-10 11:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil (Post 10823424)
What else would the Most Fascinating Man on Bike Forums drink?

Man you sure know how to bust a guys bubble - here I thought I was the most fascinating man on BF. I don't even like Dos Equis.:lol:

bobthib 05-17-10 12:37 PM

Name a bike mfgr regardless of the distribution channel and you will find fan boys and detracters. Anybody can have a bad experience. I got a BD bike and I am very happy with the bike and the process. I knew what size I needed and what I had to do when it arrived.

I thought I had a warranty claim, but the problem was my own doing. Mike even called me himself on a Saturday to make sure everything was Ok. On line bike buying is not for everyone. There is a "cost" to the money you save.

The LBS has a certain value proposition that fits for many if not most people. I still recommend BD to some people who, when talking to them, indicate they they would be a good fit. Most people I tell to visit a lot of shops, and be prepared to BUY and not GET SOLD.

If I were to get an other bike for me or one of my family, it would be a BD bike. I'm advising my niece in CA on a road bike. I send her to BD to get a sense of value and costs, not that I expect her to get a similar value at her LBS, but so she can have realistic expectations of what road bikes cost. I am telling her to find some good clubs that welcome noobs and to "shop" the LBS in the area. I don't think an on line purchase is proper for her. Better to find a good LBS that will give her a fair deal and great support.

Rick@OCRR 05-17-10 02:32 PM

The Dark Side is mysterious Luke . . . Go for the fixed gear recumbent from BD and have the darkest of all (cycling) worlds!

Good to hear you're riding with your son Weak Link. I get to ride with my son occasionally, but not very often. I'm still faster than he is (at 60, he's 28), but not sure how long that will last!

Rick / OCRR

BengeBoy 05-17-10 02:36 PM

BikesDirect = the dark side
SS/FG = the darker side
Recumbents = the gray (beard) side

revmrf 05-17-10 02:46 PM

I'd like to add here that my experience with BD was/is a good one. I had my local bike pros assemble and tune my Motobecane Cafe Noir [bought Dec. 2009] to my physical dimensions. Living in northern Vermont with lots of hills and mountain surrounding me, I've recently changed the cassette givng me a lower gear [not a mtn bike cassette] and have change the grips to accommodate some hand numbness. I ride from 11 to 30 miles per day [conditions matter to me] and have had a good experience with BD. My lbs who specialize with TREK bikes, have complimented me with my choice.

bobthib 05-17-10 08:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR (Post 10824896)
The Dark Side is mysterious Luke . . . Go for the fixed gear recumbent from BD and have the darkest of all (cycling) worlds!

Good to hear you're riding with your son Weak Link. I get to ride with my son occasionally, but not very often. I'm still faster than he is (at 60, he's 28), but not sure how long that will last!

Rick / OCRR

RIck, me too (62/31 ah ha, 2x the age. Just noticed that!) I know if he got into it he would kick my butt, but he finds it boring. He has never ridden a bike that fits him. I had him on a 54 that was way too small for his 6'3" frame (heck, it was too small for me at 6') and the tandem fit ok (an XL cockpit) but is not set up for him as I mostly ride it with my wife or grandson as stoker. He has a Trek 4100 mtb that fits, but is too heavy. I run circles around him.

If I hit the lotto everyone gets a new bike in the house. Big IF.

Retro Grouch 05-17-10 08:27 PM

My sons both ride.

A few years ago I tried to do a Father's Day mountain bike ride with them. We went to the least technical trail that they ride. Do you remember that commercial with the mountain bike rider falling off of his bike and the bike rolling down the hill? I did something like that only I left the bike up by the trail and I rolled down the hill. My sons were proud. They told me that when mountain biking if you're not bleeding you didn't try hard enough.

Now they want me to do a road ride with them. Fortunately, there's no way I'll be able to keep up with them. Maybe when my bones heal I'll give it a try.

The Weak Link 05-17-10 09:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Retro Grouch (Post 10826728)
My sons both ride.

Now they want me to do a road ride with them. Fortunately, there's no way I'll be able to keep up with them. Maybe when my bones heal I'll give it a try.

HTFU and remember those times you had to wake up and change their poopy diapers. You're not going to let a little kid in poopy diapers kick your ass now, are you?

Retro Grouch 05-18-10 10:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Weak Link (Post 10827149)
HTFU and remember those times you had to wake up and change their poopy diapers. You're not going to let a little kid in poopy diapers kick your ass now, are you?

Well, you know what goes around comes around.

lhbernhardt 05-18-10 09:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cyclinfool (Post 10823707)
Man you sure know how to bust a guys bubble - here I thought I was the most fascinating man on BF. I don't even like Dos Equis.:lol:

In Mexico you can get Tres Equis, the dark version. The dark side! But the very cool hombres muy malo in Mexico drink Negra Modelo.

Luis

stringbreaker 05-19-10 06:32 AM

I had a good experience with BD when I bought the Windsor Tourist last month. It came as advertised and was easy to assemble. The brake pads sucked and I changed them to Kool-Stops and the pedals sucked too so I changed them out. The wheels werent' perfectly true so my LBS was glad to true them and check over my assembly job,( they approved and said nice work) The mechanic that took it for a test ride was impressed with the ride quality and how it handled for a longer wheelbase bike. He said it was pretty responsive without being twitch. In fact this bike is actually my commuter and has become my favorite bike in this short period of time.

The Weak Link 05-19-10 02:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Weak Link (Post 10827149)
HTFU and remember those times you had to wake up and change their poopy diapers. You're not going to let a little kid in poopy diapers kick your ass now, are you?

Whoa, I must have written that under the heavy influence of Ovaltine. Sorry for the gratuitous snark.


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