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Old 01-03-07, 02:40 PM   #1
Machka 
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POSITIVE experiences with cycling-related businesses

This is NOT a thread to rant about everything the businesses you have dealt with have done wrong. Instead it IS a thread to tell everyone about the POSITIVE experiences you've had with cycling related businesses.

After all, as mentioned in another thread, when someone has a bad experience with a business he/she tells everyone ... but when someone has a good experience with a business he/she tells no one.

So let's change that trend!!

I'm sure we've all dealt with one or more cycling-related business ... let's hear all the positive things about them!!

I'll start:

Nashbar - http://www.nashbar.com/ - I've been dealing with them for 8 years and have not had a problem. They've always shipped the things I ordered quickly (which is especially good considering anything I order has to go through customs). The people I've talked to on the phone have been friendly and helpful. The prices have been great! And when I have had to return the occasional item, their return policy is good.

Sierra Trading Post - http://www.sierratradingpost.com/ - I've been dealing with them for a little over a year now and have also not had a problem with them. The most positive thing I can say about them is that they've probably got the fastest shipping on the planet!!! I feel like I hang up the phone and UPS is ringing my doorbell with my order. It's not quite that fast, but stuff does arrive usually in about 2 days. The people I talk to on the phone are friendly and helpful, and their prices on many items are excellent.

Velotique - http://www.velotique.com/storey.htm - I've only dealt with them once, but it was a positive experience. I got the item I ordered (a jersey) in good time as expected ... and that jersey is one of my favorites. One thing I really like about them is their catalogues ... they show a sense of humor.

AE Bike - http://aebike.com/index.cfm - I've only dealt with them once, but it was a positive experience. I got the items I ordered in decent time as expected. When I emailed them with questions prior to placing the order, with my order, and with a question after placing the order, they were very prompt to give me a good response. They have good prices and were very helpful.

Wallingford Cycles - http://www.wallbike.com/index.php - I've only dealt with him once, but am seriously considering a second purchase. I was not at all sure about purchasing a Brooks saddle, but he has the best guarantee on Brooks saddles (or any saddles, for that matter) that I've ever seen. Then I was told to email him and ask him any questions I had ... which I did ... and he was very helpful.

Mountain Equipment Coop - http://www.mec.ca/Main/home.jsp - I've been dealing with them for several years and have had positive experiences the whole time. They are probably my main source for most cycling-related gear. Their shipping charges in the past were free or next to it. I think they do charge a little bit for shipping now, but I usually go to the store now anyway. They have come through for me when my handlebar bag mount broke, and when I needed spare bulbs for a rather obscure light. They try to be environmentally conscious. And they provide lots of extra services for their customers such as classes, gear swap events, and equipment rentals.



Now it's your turn ...
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Old 01-03-07, 03:46 PM   #2
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Great idea for a thread. I've had excellent experiences with:

Wallingford (see review above)

Harris Cyclery (A hat tip to Sheldon Brown) http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/index.html

Bike Friday (folding bikes extraordinaire) http://www.bikefriday.com/

Vintage Velos (for a very nice vintage-style jersey) http://www.vintagevelos.com/

Joe Young Wheels (outstanding custom wheel builder) http://www.youngwheels.com/

My local Performance Shop has a friendly staff and good prices. If something is on sale and I don't have the coupon, they'll find one for me.

Come to think of it, nearly all of my interactions with bike-related businesses have been positive.
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Old 01-03-07, 03:51 PM   #3
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http://www.bikepartsusa.com ---good prices, decent service

http://www.chromebags.com --- best messenger bags on the planet as far as Im concerned
http://www.baileyworks.com --- second best bags made, if you dont like chrome give em a try
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Old 01-03-07, 03:55 PM   #4
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I have had good service and found good prices at PricePoint.

GloryCycles has also been a good online source for bike related purchases.
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Old 01-03-07, 04:07 PM   #5
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REI: I've found the employees very helpful. The ship to store option is quite nice
Performance: Great employees in Westminster Colorado IMHO. Never had a shipping problem.
Bicycle Village: Even better employees. Great service.
Golden Bear Bikes in Broomfield: Wonderful wrenches. It is impossible to get in and out of the store without chatting for a while.
lickbike: How can I complain about a $625 wheelset for $299?
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Old 01-03-07, 04:20 PM   #6
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Wallingford
Nashbar
and my LBS Action Wheels: always helpful, friendly, knowledgeable, but not pushy. Excellent selection. Great shop.
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Old 01-03-07, 04:24 PM   #7
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LBS- in Plano, TX go to Plano Cycling and Fitness. They have good prices, and amazing customer service from everyone in the store.
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Old 01-03-07, 04:30 PM   #8
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Harris Cyclery (of Sheldon Brown fame) http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/index.html

Probably the fastest turnaround time I've experienced. I put an order in the morning, got the tracking number in the evening. I asked for some cable crimps, and they threw in a bunch of 'em for free. Nothing big, but it's a nice little detail.

If I can find it on Harris Cyclery's website, I'll buy it there.
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Old 01-03-07, 04:58 PM   #9
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Cateye has excellent customer service. They even sent a few spare parts to me here in Latvia for free! I was amazed!
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Old 01-03-07, 09:45 PM   #10
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Winter cycling clothing: www.foxwear.net (custom made at prices below name brand factory stuff).
Tires, components, etc.: www.coloradocyclist.com (quick turnaround, good prices on specials).
Wheels: www.oddsandendos.com (great product, call Mike to talk before ordering).
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Old 01-03-07, 10:22 PM   #11
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Some time ago, I took my Bianchi to the local shop to get some of the "new" Avocet FasGrip slicks.
At that time, I would run all my cables long and wind then into circles after the brake or deraileur.
Weeell, the new pair of tires came with free installation, if I could come back in an hour.
Hey, it's free! What the heck. (where do you get free installation anymore anyways?)

The bike shop?
The Spokesman~!~! Downtown Santa Cruz, Califor Ny Yay in the good ol' USA!
(Hi Wade!)

So when I came back to get my bike, not only had they installed the tires the way I like (label opposite the valve stem on the right side of the bike) they had cut & soldered all the wires!!
Also FREE of charge!! (they said they couldn't stand the loops on such a nice bike)
And to have them soldered, I couldn't agree more.

Just a distant happy story on the positive experiences with bike businesses!
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Old 01-04-07, 10:42 AM   #12
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I forgot to add Probikekit....can't beat those prices.
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Old 01-04-07, 10:54 AM   #13
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Planet Bike: http://www.planetbike.com My bike fell over (in my garage, no less) and broke the black plastic clip on the back of my Superflash (the part that you use to clip the blinky to your helmet or the mounting rings.) Since I'm not exactly wealthy I e-mailed them to see if they sold the part separately. They mailed me two for free! ^_^ Makes me glad I got fenders and gloves from them too.

Last edited by JohnnyOTS; 01-04-07 at 12:51 PM.
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Old 01-04-07, 10:56 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slowandsteady
I forgot to add Probikekit....can't beat those prices.
+1

I've never had to deal with them over the phone, nor have I ever returned anything. But when I've ordered something, it's arrived in 5-6 business days every time (faster than Performance). Low prices combined with fast and reliable shipping gets my nod.

Competitivecyclist.com - They have pretty good prices on higher-end bikes. I picked up my Kestrel frame from them, and I was very happy with their professionalism and knowledge. They even sent me a multi-tool a few weeks later for free
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Old 01-04-07, 11:08 AM   #15
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AEBike
REI
Cateye
Nashbar

these people actually pick up the phone if you call them
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Old 01-04-07, 11:11 AM   #16
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My LBS is excellent ... http://www.wamsleycycles.com/

From day one, they've never tried to sell me anything. All staff is very helpful, and the really understand the cyclist. However, the most important thing is the quality of their work. When I take my machine to them, I KNOW that all work will quality, and right the first time. Disclaimer: I've no affiliation with them other than being a happy customer.

Now these guys ... http://www.VeloTees.com .. they offer a great product, and excellent customer service. Just ask anyone who has bought from them. Disclaimer: Okay, this is a business I own! Sorry, but I couldn't help myself.

I've also had good luck with the following on-line companies:
Nashbar
The Colorado Cyclist
Performance Bicycle

...Brad
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Old 01-04-07, 12:25 PM   #17
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nashbar surprise

Once I placed an online order with Nashbar a few minutes before they announced a coupon. Part of my order was a couple of cassettes. When the order arrived I found included two free chains to fit those cassettes, equal in value to the coupon I barely missed.
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Old 01-04-07, 04:20 PM   #18
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Ive had great service from these....
Bikeparts.com
PricePoint.com
www.Danscomp.com (good service but high shipping )
The best........www.spicercycles.com
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Old 01-04-07, 05:28 PM   #19
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My LBS here in Holland, MI ( Cross Country Cycle ) is great. Always willing to help and never pushy. I happened to mention one day that I wanted to learn how to wrench on my own bike when I was dropping it off for a tune-up and Nate the mechanic took me the through the tune-up step by step. I also asked them if they could order a PlanetBike Blinky Superflash a while back. They ordered a whole case and they now sell them cheaper than I could get one from PlanetBike for!

Nashbar has been great. Awesome prices and fast shipping.

I have also had great success with Amazon store front Niagara Cycle Works
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Old 01-04-07, 06:06 PM   #20
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Besides Nashbar, Chrome and Performance, already mentioned, which have always been quick, cheap and friendly, my dealings with Timbuk2 and J & G Cyclewear have also been great. I tend to overanalyze things and ask lots of questions before pulling the trigger. Both Timbuk2 and J & G have answered my e-mails within 24 hours and shipping has been close to immediate.

My only bad/horrible experience was with a club in Iowa selling Guinness jerseys on-line. After about six months and multiple e-mails I just demanded my money back. (I was getting responses like, "...we're a club so the jersey sales are secondary and we'll get to it when we get to it." Paraphrased) The ass in charge decided to be a real jerk by sending the check USPS overnight mail and deducting the cost. Stupid?... yes. Not because he could have used regular mail and the cashed check would have been evidence of receipt, he was obviously 'sticking' it to me, but he was stupid because he could have used FedEx and it would have cost me even more.

Okay...the last paragraph was a rant but it felt good to "air my grievences" even though Festivus is over.
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Old 01-04-07, 07:16 PM   #21
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How about bike magazines? Those are bike related businesses. My favorites:

Adventure Cycling: Great for dreaming of places I'd rather be.

Bicycle Quarterly (formerly Vintage Bicycle Quarterly): A new favorite. If you're into randonneuring or traditional (retro) cycling and cycling's roots, it's a must read. Very well written.

Dirt Rag: Just enough offbeat attitude. Always something interesting in it.
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Old 01-04-07, 08:27 PM   #22
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Nashbar and Performance online have been grea to me in the time I have been into cycling.

I have already found my new LBS, and it is Eastern Mountain Sports (at least for repairs)

I took the bike in the other day and the wrench (real cool guy) had it on the stand before I even had a chance to tell him what I needed done.

And it's right across the street from work.
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Old 01-04-07, 10:00 PM   #23
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I like Universal Cycles. They are somewhat local (22 miles) and I can order online and get notified when it's ready to be picked up. Saves shipping cost and I don't have to drive/call all over asking "Do you have any of those .......?" And, there are cats there.

I also like Planet Bike for their Business Model, good products and free shipping for members of Advocacy Groups. As far as I know, you can't get yellow fenders anywhere else.
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Old 01-05-07, 02:14 AM   #24
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Off the top of my head:

Harris Cyclery
Peter White
Urbanbiketech
Nashbar
pretty much any Austin LBS
REI (although I just hit their brick and mortar shop rather than online)
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Old 01-05-07, 01:56 PM   #25
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For my own personal use: Probikekit.com, REI.com, and Pricepoint.com. All three are great in price and shipping time.

At work: The Hawley Co. Them guys can move product faster then anyone, especailly with DHL. I can order product at 4pm and have it one hand by 11am the next day. It does help I am 200 miles from their warehouse. Then there is Park Tool and Pedro's, both try and outdue one another with customer service.

My local LBS, Lowcountry Bicycles www.locobikes.com is awesome. Even though I worked there this past Christmas shopping season, they are great. Good inventory, experenced mechanics, and an in house wheelsmith that can tell Mavic a thing or two about wheel builds.

On the road I've had good experences at:
Andy Jordan's Bike Warehouse in Augusta, GA (caught a clothing sale and a great group ride)
Outspokin' in Augusta, GA (rented a bike)
Bicycle World in Florence, SC (quick fix before a century)
Ricardson's Bike Mart in Richardson, TX (rented a bike)
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