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  1. #1
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    ok to ask lbs to refund the difference when swapping a fork?

    i'm thinking of pre-ordering a trek cobia for $860 and have lbs swap the suspension fork with a cheap rigid fork. then i put the suspension fork on ebay OR ask the lbs to refund me a fraction of the msrp of the suspension fork. the latter is convenient for me and lbs can make some profit. roughly speaking the msrp of the suspension on the cobia is ~$300 which is big money. i'm prepared to ebay it but would it be reasonable to even propose a partial refund? any advice will be appreciated. thanks!

  2. #2
    on your left.
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    No LBS I know would do that, hard to sell a fork alone, unless it's a high-end shop.
    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    I learned this the hard way. They say that experience is the best teacher, but I would have been preferred to just read about it on the internet.

  3. #3
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    thanks. then i won't even bother asking then. i'd be pushing it anyway at $300. i'll just ebay it. should be easy to sell. the cobia comes with hornet hydraulic disc brakes. would it be too much to ask them to swap the hydraulics for mechanical bb7s as an even exchange? this is the only swap i'll request and otherwise the cobia is perfect for me.

  4. #4
    Older than dirt CCrew's Avatar
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    Switching the calipers also means switching the brake levers. Personally I think it's an unreasonable request.

    But then again, I think by the time you dump the fork (which isn't worth $300 BTW) and swap the brakes you should have just bought a different bike.

  5. #5
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    Take-offs go for a fraction of the MSRP, so the shop would lose big-time in that deal. Most shops will upgrade parts at time of purchase, at a discount, but a discount for down-grading? Nowhere I'm aware of.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by CCrew View Post
    Switching the calipers also means switching the brake levers. Personally I think it's an unreasonable request.

    But then again, I think by the time you dump the fork (which isn't worth $300 BTW) and swap the brakes you should have just bought a different bike.
    thank you all for clarifying for me how much / what swapping is reasonable or unreasonable. sounds to me like the most someone should ask for is to swap a stem or maybe a tire. that's fine, i don't mean to be a tough customer. i like my lbs - he's a good guy. i'm glad i asked here first.

    i want only a 29er and nothing else. this is a relatively new development that is not tried and tested. so i want to buy the 29er from a company that is tried and tested and that i've had good experience with. that's trek. but they don't sell 29ers with rigid forks so i have to swap. as for the brakes...i'll tolerate hydraulics

    ccrew, i asked in the mtbr forum for a rough estimate and heard $300. whatever the value is fine with me.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
    Take-offs go for a fraction of the MSRP, so the shop would lose big-time in that deal. Most shops will upgrade parts at time of purchase, at a discount, but a discount for down-grading? Nowhere I'm aware of.
    Oh, OK, thanks. I was not aware of this. For a lot of you guys this is obvious & common sense because you have a lot of experience buying bikes I am a newbie.

  8. #8
    motovation frankenmike's Avatar
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    Have you considered a Surly Karate Monkey? AFAIK they are well proven, tried and tested, and can be spec'd any way you'd like.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Kimmitt's Avatar
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    +1 on the Karate Monkey. If you're swapping forks out, may as well just get a frame that matches your needs.

    Besides, if you run it with a derailleur, you can use their "monkey nuts," which should make any human being with a pulse happy.
    I see unexamined people. All the time. I don't think they know they're unexamined.

  10. #10
    Bianchi Goddess Bianchigirll's Avatar
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    why are you buying a bike with front suspension and hydraulic brakes if you don't want one?
    Bianchis '87 Sport SX, '90 Proto (2), '91 Boarala 'cross, '93 Project 3, '88 Trofeo, '86 Volpe, '89 Axis, '79 Mixte SOLD, '99 Mega Pro XL Ti, '97 Ti Megatube, , '90 something Vento 603,

    Others but still loved,; '80 RIGI, '80 Batavus Professional, '87 Cornelo, '86 Bertoni (sold), '09 Motobecane SS, '98 Hetchins M.O., '09 K2 Mainframe, '89 Trek 2000, '?? Jane Doe (still on the drawing board), '90ish Haro Escape

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
    why are you buying a bike with front suspension and hydraulic brakes if you don't want one?
    because i want a bike with tires 2"+ wide, slack geometry, handlebars a little higher due to geometry, reputable company like trek that gives lifetime warranty, good value (can you beat this for $860?).

    the karate monkey is indeed tried and tested. i don't know if this is as good of a value as the trek. i'd want a karate monkey with (1) durable, tubeless ready wheels. i don't care about weight (2) deore shifters + derailers + crank (3) avid bb7 disc brakes. i hear that it is cheaper to buy a complete bike like a trek cobia than to buy individual parts. i imagine that the karate monkey will be significantly more expensive but i'll check it out. i do like the fact that it is steel though.

    as for brakes, a lot of bikes come with either hydraulics that need to be bled once a year (i don't need the extra stopping power) or mechanicals like the tektro novela or avid bb5s which have horrible reviews and need constant adjusting. the bb7 is easy to adjust, isn't a pain like the bb5s or the novela, and doesn't need to be bled.

    i am being very specific with what i want.

    trek cobia: 860
    avid bb7 + sd7 levers: 100
    surly karate monkey fork only: 70
    tax: 0 (will drive 20 minutes to delaware)
    total: 1030

    ebay: i have spoken to several people and should be able to sell the fork for $200. these promax hornets are supposedly 125 per wheel (nonsense!) but i'll sell them for $100. total is $300 - 15% ebay fee = $250.

    1030-250 = 780 easy. not bad!

    as for having the lbs do a swap...this is a pre-order where the bike will come partially assembled...i'm not asking the lbs for any refunds so that's not a problem...as for the labor...i'm not sure...if i have to pay a couple of bucks (i doubt it)...i'll do it...but these guys are professionals who do this stuff quite easily everyday...man it's good to have some nice bike shops near me!

  12. #12
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    While the bike comes partially assembled, the fork is installed before the shop gets the bike.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Nermal's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=common man;11049317i hear that it is cheaper to buy a complete bike like a trek cobia than to buy individual parts. i imagine that the karate monkey will be significantly more expensive but i'll check it out. i do like the fact that it is steel though.
    [/QUOTE]

    Sure, but you're planning to buy a complete bike, part it out to pay for the bike, and start building. Not the same principle.
    Some people are like a Slinky ... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by common man View Post
    because i want a bike with tires 2"+ wide, slack geometry, handlebars a little higher due to geometry, reputable company like trek that gives lifetime warranty, good value (can you beat this for $860?).

    the karate monkey is indeed tried and tested. i don't know if this is as good of a value as the trek. i'd want a karate monkey with (1) durable, tubeless ready wheels. i don't care about weight (2) deore shifters + derailers + crank (3) avid bb7 disc brakes. i hear that it is cheaper to buy a complete bike like a trek cobia than to buy individual parts. i imagine that the karate monkey will be significantly more expensive but i'll check it out. i do like the fact that it is steel though.

    as for brakes, a lot of bikes come with either hydraulics that need to be bled once a year (i don't need the extra stopping power) or mechanicals like the tektro novela or avid bb5s which have horrible reviews and need constant adjusting. the bb7 is easy to adjust, isn't a pain like the bb5s or the novela, and doesn't need to be bled.

    i am being very specific with what i want.

    trek cobia: 860
    avid bb7 + sd7 levers: 100
    surly karate monkey fork only: 70
    tax: 0 (will drive 20 minutes to delaware)
    total: 1030

    ebay: i have spoken to several people and should be able to sell the fork for $200. these promax hornets are supposedly 125 per wheel (nonsense!) but i'll sell them for $100. total is $300 - 15% ebay fee = $250.

    1030-250 = 780 easy. not bad!

    as for having the lbs do a swap...this is a pre-order where the bike will come partially assembled...i'm not asking the lbs for any refunds so that's not a problem...as for the labor...i'm not sure...if i have to pay a couple of bucks (i doubt it)...i'll do it...but these guys are professionals who do this stuff quite easily everyday...man it's good to have some nice bike shops near me!
    You're asking the wrong people. None of us are selling bikes in your area so out opinion isn't really worth very much. My feeling is that's a boat load of extra shop work which equates to a zero profit sale. If you can find somebody who will do it for that price great but, honestly, I wouldn't so it.

  15. #15
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    my original question in the thread was if it's ok to ask the lbs for a refund for swapped parts. i found the answer as a clear NO! and i appreciate that.

    as for swapping forks and brakes, i visited my lbs this morning and he's totally cool with it and he said no charge even though i didn't even ask that. you guys gotta give the lbs a little more credit..they're professionals...

    i made two modifications and that bike will never ever need any tweaking. it will be maintenance free save for occasionally degreasing, lubing, and riding properly. i often hear people say, "upgrade the components later" etc...so i've taken care of that now...i know what i want. someone will say they're not the same thing...that you pay for the labor of upgrades... they both require labor from the lbs (perhaps more for the upgrades")...as for labor rate...i'm more than happy to pay if necessary...this is america...if i want something particular and can pay for it...i should get it...

  16. #16
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    Enjoy it!

    Throw up pic.

  17. #17
    Senior Member travelmama's Avatar
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    It is never unreasonable to ask for a discount. Whether you get it or not will not make or break you.
    Two Wheels One Love

  18. #18
    Senior Member Milice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by common man View Post
    it will be maintenance free save for occasionally degreasing, lubing, and riding properly. :

    The only bike that is maintenance free is on that sits in the garage and is never ridden.
    If it looks like the $3000 bikes but costs less than a decent helmet, it probably isn't a wise investment.


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