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Halfords Bikes

Old 10-19-15, 04:08 PM
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wpenhallurick
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Halfords Bikes

Hi

I am looking to get a new bike through the cycle to work scheme. However i believe it has to be used at Halfords and i hear the quality of bikes there is pretty poor. Can anyone advise if Halfords stock any good reliable bikes for a 15 mile round trip on flat roads each day?
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Old 10-19-15, 04:28 PM
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I just looked up that cycle scheme and I must admit, I'm a little jealous. If your employer is willing to buy the bike for you, then you have nothing to lose! I would say that worst case, you have to replace some sub-par components as they wear out, but you still come out ahead.
What are you riding now? Are you already making the commute by bike? This may help people know what kind of expectations you have and what you are looking for in a new bike.
If you are only looking at a discount and a tax break, I have the feeling that you are going to get a lot of advice to look for a quality used bike that fits you better. That seems to be an overall best bet when you are not demanding too much performance. Good luck!
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Old 10-19-15, 04:37 PM
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You may want to repost this in one of the regional discussion areas, as I (and I suspect many others) have no idea what Halfords is, where it is located, or, for that matter, where you are located.
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Old 10-19-15, 04:39 PM
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Its a Car Parts chain , not a Bike Shop, but they do pay money to UK Race teams to wear the Brand Logo..

The racers dont ride bikes from their shops though..

Western Auto in the US used to have Bikes in their shops too.

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-19-15 at 04:55 PM.
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Old 10-19-15, 05:02 PM
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Halford's follows the BikesDirect business model, although they carry a lot of *really* lower quality stuff. My advice would be to stay away from suspension of any type. This one:
Boardman Hybrid Sport Bike
actually doesn't look half bad for the price. It's got mostly Acera, but it's a 9-speed rear.
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Old 10-20-15, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by wpenhallurick View Post
Hi

I am looking to get a new bike through the cycle to work scheme. However i believe it has to be used at Halfords and i hear the quality of bikes there is pretty poor. Can anyone advise if Halfords stock any good reliable bikes for a 15 mile round trip on flat roads each day?
The first thing to do is suggest to your employer that they hook up with a supplier other than halfords. However, that'll take time. For now, if you're buying at Halfords, buy a Boardman. It's a quality product. If you're not a competent mechanic, though, get another bike shop to check it over and adjust it for you - Halfords staff are notorious for not assembling the bike as well as they might.
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Old 10-22-15, 07:11 AM
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It's a much better idea to go to decathalon if you want to buy a bike from a big franchise. Halfords pride themselves on terrible bikes.
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Old 10-22-15, 08:30 AM
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Buy the most expensive bike your boss will pay for and then modify it from there.
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Old 10-22-15, 09:09 AM
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I have read about this program and have never seen anything that requires you to buy a bike from Halfords. That may be the most common supplier, but I see no reason why you should have to make your purchase through an inferior retailer
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Old 10-22-15, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by alcjphil View Post
I have read about this program and have never seen anything that requires you to buy a bike from Halfords. That may be the most common supplier, but I see no reason why you should have to make your purchase through an inferior retailer
I've used the scheme more than once. It requires the employer to specify one or more suppliers from whom the staff must purchase. So it is not the scheme, but the employer, that specifies the supplier.
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Old 10-22-15, 09:32 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Its a Car Parts chain , not a Bike Shop, but they do pay money to UK Race teams to wear the Brand Logo..

The racers dont ride bikes from their shops though..

Western Auto in the US used to have Bikes in their shops too.
Your several years out of date with your info, Yes they are a car parts chain, but also the UK's biggest retail bike chain, they supply low to high range bike from their own brands via their Bikehut brand (Apollo (low) Carrera (UK specifit mid range) Boardman (their exclusive mid to high) Pinnarello and a few others.

Unfortunately #fiestbob you coming of the same as people who say Halfrauds, not Halfords

For the OP, if you want something to do the distance you looking at, would be looking at a bike from the Carrera Subway range, several models under than name, they offer good VFM, and are current with 27.5 wheel sizes introduced this year Carrera Subway 1 Mens Hybrid Bike 2015 If possible.

Regardless of where you are looking to get a bike, would wait till 'Black Friday' is upon us, as UK retailers seem to have picked up this event to have a pre-holiday season sale. If you are looking to get a bike from Halfords, it may be worth joining British Cycling for an additional 10% discount, although this may not be applicable with the C2W scheme.
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Old 10-22-15, 09:41 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post

For the OP, if you want something to do the distance you looking at, would be looking at a bike from the Carrera Subway range, several models under than name, they offer good VFM, and are current with 27.5 wheel sizes introduced this year Carrera Subway 1 Mens Hybrid Bike 2015 If possible.
Don't agree with this recommendation. The OP will be getting the bike for not much more than half price, so the difference in cost between the Carrera and the Boardman will be much reduced. And the Boardman is much the better bike.
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Old 10-22-15, 09:42 AM
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OK only took 10 posts before someone in UK noticed this topic. Yankee guessing from across the Pond tried..
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Old 10-22-15, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
OK only took 10 posts before someone in UK noticed this topic. Yankee guessing from across the Pond tried..
Actually, Bob, it only took six. But I'm flattered you think I've mastered American English...
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Old 10-22-15, 10:03 AM
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uncertain it was ... as you said. this forum is one big guessathon, mostly ..
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Old 10-22-15, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by chasm54 View Post
Don't agree with this recommendation. The OP will be getting the bike for not much more than half price, so the difference in cost between the Carrera and the Boardman will be much reduced. And the Boardman is much the better bike.
OK, but who pays retail on any bike, as I said, wait for the sales, and the one I linked to will probably be significantly reduced.

However C2W schemes bikes are often only sold at full retail, the OP needs to look at this for the scheme they are in, so it may discount any advertised saving the Boardman has (if I was looking at the Boardman, not sure a I would even bother with the scheme, as your not going to seen much of a saving over the year vs the hassle of buying it back off the employer at the end.

For the OP, they may want to research the best price points for this scheme, here's a stat Guide to the Cycle to Work scheme - BikeRadar
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Old 10-22-15, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
(if I was looking at the Boardman, not sure a I would even bother with the scheme, as your not going to seen much of a saving over the year vs the hassle of buying it back off the employer at the end.
Don't understand this point. When I have used the scheme the monthly instalments were simply deducted from salary and at the end of the year, presto, you own the bike. Entirely hassle-free.

As for discounts, you're looking at heavy discounting to compete with no VAT, no income tax on the money used for the purchase, and interest-free finance over 12 months. If you normally pay income tax at the standard rate you're looking at a saving of over 40%.
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Old 10-22-15, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by chasm54 View Post
Don't understand this point. When I have used the scheme the monthly instalments were simply deducted from salary and at the end of the year, presto, you own the bike. Entirely hassle-free.

As for discounts, you're looking at heavy discounting to compete with no VAT, no income tax on the money used for the purchase, and interest-free finance over 12 months. If you normally pay income tax at the standard rate you're looking at a saving of over 40%.
Because it's not at the sweet spot price point for buying the bike. Also, you don't own the bike, but are liable for any damage, loss, repair etc, for 350, it just seems like a lot of hassle (esp when you often limited to where you can get the bike from, and if your doing a lot of distance, a bike under 500 is often unsuited for that purpose (the OP said 15 miles round trip, my commute is that each way, and it take can it's toll on a bike pretty quickly)), if your looking at 500, or 1000, then it gets more worthwhile.

For clarification to what you have put, you don't own the bike at the end of the scheme, you need to buy it of your employer at the FMW the HMRC as set.
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Old 10-24-15, 05:50 AM
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I ran a Carrera subway, a 2012 model. It was a tank and felt like it.

They've switched them to 650b now, which piques my interest.
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Old 10-24-15, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
Because it's not at the sweet spot price point for buying the bike. Also, you don't own the bike, but are liable for any damage, loss, repair etc, for 350, it just seems like a lot of hassle (esp when you often limited to where you can get the bike from, and if your doing a lot of distance, a bike under 500 is often unsuited for that purpose (the OP said 15 miles round trip, my commute is that each way, and it take can it's toll on a bike pretty quickly)), if your looking at 500, or 1000, then it gets more worthwhile.
Exactly why it's worth getting the Boardman.

For clarification to what you have put, you don't own the bike at the end of the scheme, you need to buy it of your employer at the FMW the HMRC as set.
If your employer has set the scheme up properly, you are lease-purchasing the bike and your final monthly payment "buys" it.
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Old 10-24-15, 12:00 PM
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Boardmans are gash, get a B'twin.
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Old 10-24-15, 01:50 PM
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I don't know if they still sell Boardman bikes in Halfords, but Boardman bikes have a very good reputation. They were on sale for a while on wiggle. Whole stock was sold out quickly and almost every review was near perfect. I don't know if you can still find the reviews but there was close to a hundred and almost all were positive. If I could chose my next brand it would probably b a Boardman, but they are not on sale in my country.
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Old 10-24-15, 03:52 PM
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The problem with Halfords is the variability of the service you get. It is not that it is bad or good, but you never know which one it will be. Mechanics are self-certified, ie "I can do that."
The product range and pricing is good. I have purchased a trailer from them, ordered online, collected in-store next day, assembled myself, no problems.
Carerra Subway was the goto model for a budget urban commuter. I think going 27.5 was an error, given the poor availability of road tyres. The Boardman range are good, and their CX disc machines make excellent all-weather quick commuter bikes.

The Cycle To Work scheme is not a total giveaway. You pay retail price in installments out of your pre-tax salary (ie no income tax on the purchase). At the end of the scheme, in which you have really been renting a bike belonging to your employer, you generally have the right to buy the bike you have been riding for 2 years, at market price. Some accounting departments re less generous than others.
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