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llbean bikes

Old 12-05-16, 10:11 PM
  #1  
TreyWestgate
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llbean bikes

Are they any good??.

Love the other products from there and you get a unconditional unlimited satisfaction guarantee.

the only thing I might say is that geometry might not be the same as a company who really knows bikes like Trek, Cannondale or specialized.

But the warranty you get is unlike most other places you might get a bike since you often can't return a bike and the lifetime warranty is a limited lifetime warranty.

Get it from Bean and they'll take it back no matter what. Whenever you want, no questions asked.

My question just was if anyone had a bike from llbean and what do they think of the bikes from there?.

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Old 12-06-16, 04:31 AM
  #2  
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I can guarantee that they are not making the bikes themselves, they are coming out of some factory in Taiwan or China and getting some stickers slapped on them.
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Old 12-06-16, 06:46 AM
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It's like buying a bike from General Tire or Montgomery Ward. You get whatever they specified at whatever price point. Bikes are pretty similar for most average riders, who wouldn't know the difference between cheap v-brakes and more esoteric top-of-the-line stuff.


Look, @TreyWestgate, you're all over the map with these recent posts about two-bolt stem-to-bar faceplates and steel seatposts. Unless you're riding downhill trails from mountains, you're not stressing the saddle or handlebars that much.


Calm down and learn to torque things to spec, inspect them often, and just relax. As for buying a bike at L.L. Bean, why would you? Unless it was a sweepstakes prize or a gift, don't go there. It's likely that you're paying a premium for their brand over the same generic sold elsewhere (like Performance...). What does a guarantee mean for an average bike ridden under normal, less-than-stressing conditions? Not much...
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Old 12-06-16, 08:38 AM
  #4  
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I don't know about now, but Trek used to make LL Bean bikes. For the price though, just go to a LBS and get full mechanical support as well.
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Old 12-06-16, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Milice View Post
I can guarantee that they are not making the bikes themselves, they are coming out of some factory in Taiwan or China and getting some stickers slapped on them.
the most expensive bike on their website is an 'imported' Schwinn...

getting a bike from a clothing store sounds like a stellar idea.
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Old 12-06-16, 09:23 AM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by FullGas View Post
getting a bike from a clothing store sounds like a stellar idea.

What about getting clothing from a bike store?


BTW...Bean is more than a clothing store. They have sold other outdoor gear for a long time. When I was riding home after crossing the country my tent zipper crapped out, which is not a good thing in mosquito-ridden Maine. Asked the woman working the campground office if there was an outdoor store around. She asked me where I was headed. I showed her my map. She looked up at me with this dumbfounded look on her face and said "Well, you're going through Freeport." "And that means what?" I asked. She informed me it was the home of L.L. Bean. Picked me up a new tent and I was back in business.
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Old 12-06-16, 09:26 AM
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Again there are only a few bike frame companies in China and Taiwan. The vast majority of bikes sold here are built by them. Any bike company just picks out the frames they want from these frame mfg companies and have their logos put on them So IMO a bike from LL Bean would not be much different than a bike from the big name bike companies.
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Old 12-06-16, 09:27 AM
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in the past they got them from Cannondale, when the company making the bikes was in PA.
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Old 12-06-16, 09:50 AM
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At least as of recently, the big manufacturers were manufacturing their bikes. Giant, Trek, and Cannondale have all had their hands in it.

Hell, when Giant was 'making' them, they were straight re-paints of a current Giant model.
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Old 12-06-16, 10:36 AM
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For their target audience, they are probably fine. They seem to slot in with any other outdoor big box shop offering.

I doubt many here would find them to be optimal, but I see no reason they wouldn't suffice for the recreational rider.
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Old 12-06-16, 10:47 AM
  #11  
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I've put thousands of miles on an REI bike. LLBean is an east coast REI clone, right?
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Old 12-06-16, 01:41 PM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I've put thousands of miles on an REI bike. LLBean is an east coast REI clone, right?
Um, no. They've arrived at a similar space, but by different means. And, the earlier one cannot be a clone of the later one. Think the Maine Hunting Shoe...


REI has a broader sporting appeal. LL Bean is a bit stodgier.
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Old 12-06-16, 02:01 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Phil_gretz View Post
Um, no. They've arrived at a similar space, but by different means. And, the earlier one cannot be a clone of the later one. Think the Maine Hunting Shoe...
REI has a broader sporting appeal. LL Bean is a bit stodgier.
LLBean has a much longer history than REI, dating back to 1912. I have been to their big store in Freeport and it is beautiful, but it is a commercial operation. REI on the other hand is a coop, very much like MEC in Canada. I have never been to an REI store but I assume that they are very much like the MEC stores I have been to here. Both REI and LLBean started out providing quality goods for active people, but at very different times. That they sell similar goods today isn't surprising. I have never thought of LLBean as being stodgy
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Old 12-06-16, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by alcjphil View Post
I have never thought of LLBean as being stodgy
I've always viewed LL Bean as more of an Orvis or a Filson: upscale outdoor clothing for a more leisurely crowd. Didn't even realize they sold bikes or other outdoor gear until now.
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Old 12-06-16, 07:40 PM
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While LL Bean does not make any of their sport products like bikes, kayaks, canoes, skis and other... they also do not sell junk and have a lifetime replacement warranty which makes buying from them confident inspiring. Performance and satisfaction is guaranteed as long as you aren't a serious rider, you should be satisfied with their line of products.
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Old 12-06-16, 08:31 PM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
I've always viewed LL Bean as more of an Orvis or a Filson: upscale outdoor clothing for a more leisurely crowd. Didn't even realize they sold bikes or other outdoor gear until now.
When we camp I sleep in an LL Bean sleeping bag, on an LL Bean air pad, in an LL Bean tent. All great stuff, all house brand, as good as any product I sold when I worked for Eastern Mt. sports. The Bean bike store in Freeport has a whole range of bikes, racing, mountain, cross, you name it.

Bikes, canoes and kayaks, hunting, camping, fishing, snow sports, pretty much the whole range of recreational activities. Then clothing as their primary products.

Great stuff, maybe a slightly better value then REI (especially clothing), who I find expensive, even with my memberships deals.
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Old 12-07-16, 07:53 AM
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Like most established retail stores, LL Bean isn't what it used to be. In general, their quality has declined to keep their prices competitive with other stores. I used to love their heavy wool pants, for example. But, in the last few years, they've become a lot less heavy. I've switched to Montana Woolen Shop for my pants in recent years. Alas, the same decline seems to have permeated LL Bean's entire line. FWIW
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Old 12-07-16, 10:32 AM
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If you live close to LL Bean, then maybe it makes sense. But if you have to ship it back to return it, the cost would be prohibitive. Also, your lbs may offer free tuneups for a couple years; that has a solid cash value you need to consider. Finally, who is assembling and setting up their bikes? Is it a skilled bike mechanic or just some guy they hired who also puts together chairs, etc.? They are not at all comparable to REI, which has in house bike shops for repair and service, so you know skilled mechanics are at least overseeing the newer mechanics who do the assembly. If you like the specs on a bike they have, then take those specs to your local shop and see what they can offer. Buy your bike with a credit card that offers double warranty and damage and theft protection (for example, chase freedom has 120 days theft/damage protection, and doubles any manufacturer warranty; check your card).
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Old 12-07-16, 06:51 PM
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I think it's useful to understand that the bikes LL Bean sells on -line are destined for entry level, casual cyclists. Not the typical enthusiasts we see here on this forum. They are not in the same category as what REI sells on-line.

The additional bikes LL Bean sells in the Freeport Maine store are more enthusiast oriented and there are bikes available in that store that are not sold on-line. As well, the "other-then-Freeport" retail stores, due to the market orientation of the company, represent the on-line products, not the flagship Freeport store, in terms of bikes available (if they have them at all).

Bottom line is LL Bean sells bikes as a product to round out the product line, not as a primary part of their business. With REI, bikes and accessories are a major part of the product line.
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Old 12-07-16, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I've put thousands of miles on an REI bike. LLBean is an east coast REI clone, right?
Good analogy!
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Old 12-11-16, 08:27 AM
  #21  
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LLB sold some cool rebadged Cannondale bikes in the 80s.
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Old 12-11-16, 10:22 AM
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Rule of thumb: Any time you see a non-bike brand name on a bike....run!

A few examples: Bikes bearing names like "GMC Denali" (LOL!!! or "Porsche"....or pretty much the name of any store chain, fashion designer, etc. etc. They're almost always big-box store/walmart BSO's, with a few dollars tacked on for the name licensing. It wasn't always this way....45-50 years ago, it was possible to get a mediocre bike from Sears, and some other places- but today, the committee that says "Let's offer a bicycle with our brand name on it" is targeting the general non-cycling public (Just trying to sell the idea of cycling, to people who will buy the bike, ride it around the block twice, and then let it sit in their garage for the next 30 years untouched) because let's face it, it's only a tiny percentage of the consumer market who are serious cyclists and who buy "good bikes"- so if they offered good bikes, at the requisite prices, how many of their customers would buy them? (And how many serious cyclists would want a bike that says "LL Bean" or Tractor Supply" or Canadian Tire" on it, even if it were a competent bike at a reasonable price?)

LOL- I picture calling up LL Bean... "Yeah, gimme a pair of slippers; a flannel shirt....and a BIKE!".....

tl; dr version: Rebranded Walmart specials.
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Old 12-11-16, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by tclune View Post
Like most established retail stores, LL Bean isn't what it used to be. In general, their quality has declined to keep their prices competitive with other stores. I used to love their heavy wool pants, for example. But, in the last few years, they've become a lot less heavy. I've switched to Montana Woolen Shop for my pants in recent years. Alas, the same decline seems to have permeated LL Bean's entire line. FWIW
This is true. Even their venerable slippers, which used to last 7 years, even under abusive conditions, are not what they used to be- this will be my last pair time to find something that possesses the quality which the LL's used to.
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Old 12-11-16, 07:14 PM
  #24  
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Free return shipping at LLBean
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