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Opinion about Bikesdirect.com?

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Old 08-01-17, 02:27 PM
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cbustaylor
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Opinion about Bikesdirect.com?

Curious about experiences or perceptions about bikesdirect.com. I realize the inherent disadvantage of buying a bike online and that it's worth paying more for a bike that is right. However, they're apparently significant discounts are appealing. Appreciate anything you got or alternative sites.
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Old 08-01-17, 02:51 PM
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Maelochs
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I own a BD bike, and I was part of a cross-country tour which was entirely on two dozen BD bikes. No real issues, no complaints, got what was ordered.

Some minor tuning of brakes and derailleurs was desired though possibly not absolutely required (high standards.)

A lot of the wheels needed retruing after the first few hundred miles ... after that they worked well.

I just rode my 2014 BD Dawes last night ... still works wonderfully.

If you can do minor cable adjustments (and if you can't it is time to learn) and can attach stuff like pedals, handlebars , and a front wheel, you can buy a BD bike and be riding happily half an hour after it arrives.

Any decent shop will be glad to look at the wheels after several hundred miles if you find they are wobbling.
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Old 08-01-17, 02:55 PM
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Juan Foote
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Does search feature work for new members? Even if not, go do a google search and then follow the links back here. This subject comes up every few days and there are pages, and pages, and pages, and pages, and pages, and pages of opinion here.
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Old 08-01-17, 03:00 PM
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Are you reasonably handy with tools and don't need to lean on your local shop to get the bike sized, adjusted, and tuned?

Are you confident you can identify the frame that's right for you, both type and size, without a test ride?

Are you familiar enough with different component options -- shifters, brakes, etc. -- that you can identify what you want without trying them?

If so, then you can get a heck of a bargain from BikesDirect. If not, you could potentially end up regretting buying online.

One thing that kinda irks me about about BikesDirect is the sales schtick. Everything is always "on sale" for a massive percentage off of "list price". What list?! They sell 'house brand' bikes. They determine their own list prices and set them absurdly high just to make their regular prices seem like more of a bargain. It's deceptive and kinda sleazy in a "used car salesman" sort of way.

...but the fact I don't like their marketing approach doesn't mean the bikes aren't decent buys.
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Old 08-01-17, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by SkyDog75 View Post
One thing that kinda irks me about about BikesDirect is the sales schtick. Everything is always "on sale" for a massive percentage off of "list price".
"Compare this $900 bike to a $50000 Cannondale or Specialized!"

Yeah ... if you want. Compare it to an umbrella or a stuffed penguin, equally relevant.

I am a fan of the site but I have to admit, their hype is just stupid.
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Old 08-01-17, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by SkyDog75 View Post
Are you reasonably handy with tools and don't need to lean on your local shop to get the bike sized, adjusted, and tuned?

Are you confident you can identify the frame that's right for you, both type and size, without a test ride?

Are you familiar enough with different component options -- shifters, brakes, etc. -- that you can identify what you want without trying them?

If so, then you can get a heck of a bargain from BikesDirect. If not, you could potentially end up regretting buying online.

One thing that kinda irks me about about BikesDirect is the sales schtick. Everything is always "on sale" for a massive percentage off of "list price". What list?! They sell 'house brand' bikes. They determine their own list prices and set them absurdly high just to make their regular prices seem like more of a bargain. It's deceptive and kinda sleazy in a "used car salesman" sort of way.

...but the fact I don't like their marketing approach doesn't mean the bikes aren't decent buys.
+1. Bikesdirect is good value, but they way overstate that value.
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Old 08-01-17, 10:05 PM
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I bought hardtail mtb bikes for stepson and his wife. Hers was from REI, last year's model marked down 15%, his from BikesDirect. Similarly equipped, his was somewhat less expensive and had slightly nicer components. Hers came with a free 500 mile tune-up and was a color she really liked; his is black and he has to do any adjustments himself. They both like the bikes a lot. If you know what you are ordering, BD can be a good deal. Returns are reportedly problematic and costly. REI has a great return policy.
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Old 08-01-17, 10:33 PM
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I bought a bd bike and I'm happy with it. I had a few questions about it and they always replied promptly. The only negative was the web site said anyone could put it together in 30 minutes. It took me 4 hours. And I've built several bikes from the bare frame up. Much of that 4 hours was spent trying to figure out how to wire up my Di2, which it was shipped only partly wired. That's mostly my fault though because I was unfamiliar with Di2 when I bought it. Now I could put it together in an hour or two.
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Old 08-02-17, 12:18 AM
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I find performance bicycle has better prices if you can wait for their annual 30% back event. You get lifetime free adjustments too.
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Old 08-02-17, 06:32 AM
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Performance Bikes does offer good deals if you can wait for the sale ... you can also get triple points.

Bikes Direct is always there.

Free lifetime adjustments really don't matter unless the store happens to be nearby.

"Lifetime adjustments" depends on the shop. The bike should need adjustments after the first few hundred miles (cable stretch) and not again until the cables need replacing. Probably the shop will be happy to get the business when you need new cables .... free "adjustment" but pay for parts and labor for the cables ... and maybe the shop will do the stuff for which people like some shops ... tips, trail maps, the odd free repair or low-price repair when you think ti's a catastrophe but it's not ....

Really, you need to know how to change and adjust cables anyway--with barrel adjusters on every cable nowadays, it isn't rocket science.
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Old 08-02-17, 06:34 AM
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Old 08-02-17, 06:48 AM
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I bought a gravel bike from BikesDirect back in March... Motobecane Omni Strada Comp. I had the local LBS assemble and tune it. So far it's been great. I ride it on local rail trails. I don't ride it as much as my road bikes, but it has 500 miles on it, so when I do ride it... it's at least a 20 mile ride.
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Old 08-02-17, 07:49 AM
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Word : Probably Adequate.


the LBS has had a few of them left there, in the box, for their trained mechanics to assemble them.. for a fee..





...

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Old 08-02-17, 08:12 AM
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I have been a part of 5 different Bikes Direct purchases as the buyer or the person doing the initial assembly. I have never had a bad experience, even with some of their lower end bikes. My primary ride right now is a Motobecane Le Champion. I love it. Someone suggested earlier that you search the forum for threads on BD bikes and you will get lots of opinions. Opinions don't really count. Experiences do. Overwhelmingly people have positive experiences. You have to know how to adjust brakes and derailleurs or be willing to have a shop do it.

I have also ordered Nashbar bikes. Once or twice a week they offer a 20-30% off coupon. That makes some of their bikes a better bargain than BD.
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Old 08-02-17, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by cbustaylor View Post
Appreciate anything you got or alternative sites.
REI end of year pricing on whats left of their CO-OP brand.
Diamondback corporate site pricing.
Raleigh corporate site pricing.
Nashbar if they have your size and during a 25-26% off sale.

All are good alternative options, especially the Dback and Raleigh corporate discount sites.



As for my opinion on bikesdirect- if they sold em without MOTOBECANE plastered across the bike, I would like them better. So if they had their own in house brand name(versus having bought license to use an expired US distribution name of an actual historical company), I would like them much more. Also, if they didnt claim insane discounts, i would like them much more.
As for the bikes themselves- they seem perfectly fine from what Ive seen. Most are generic aluminum tube frames...hard to mess that up at this point. Last week I saw a bunch of various carbon Motobecane BikesDirect road bikes. I cant tell 1 carbon bike from another, but they werent cracked and were being used...so if thats the standard needed to call em good, then they were good.

Seriously- if they developed their own brand, called it Direct Cycles or VeloDirect, and sold bikes under than name- i would like em a bunch more.
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Old 08-02-17, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Seriously- if they developed their own brand, called it Direct Cycles or VeloDirect, and sold bikes under than name- i would like em a bunch more.
So long as it is a better name than "Scattante."

Yeah, it is true ... "Direct Cycles" is actually a good name ... "Direct" would make a good downtube decal.
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Old 08-02-17, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
As for my opinion on bikesdirect- if they sold em without MOTOBECANE plastered across the bike, I would like them better. So if they had their own in house brand name(versus having bought license to use an expired US distribution name of an actual historical company), I would like them much more. Also, if they didnt claim insane discounts, i would like them much more.
Meh, having not really lived when Motobecanes were sold new by the French company, I don't really get attached to this notion that there is some sort of faux prestige they are trying to attach to the bikes. If I weren't into the C&V stuff, I'd probably have no clue that there even was another Motobecane (or Windsor, or Mercier, or Dawes for that matter). If anything, a generic BD Motobecane is probably of better quality than most of the generic French Motobecanes I see. Some of them certainly are as sexy as the old offerings.

As to the "compare to" pricing, that is widespread practice beyond just BD. When is the last time you bought anything at Nashbar at the listed MSRP?
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Old 08-02-17, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
So long as it is a better name than "Scattante."

Yeah, it is true ... "Direct Cycles" is actually a good name ... "Direct" would make a good downtube decal.
Yup, and the marketing advice i provide is, like BD bikes, at an incredible discount. I usually charge $1000 for my opinions, but this one is marked down to only $150 with tax included!

We dont have Performance stores near where I live, so I only ever see Scattante bikes when on RAGBRAI since so many come from Chicago(where there are Performance stores) and elsewhere to ride. Just saw a handful of them on last week's ride. I chuckle to myself while riding as I think of the different ways to pronounce that and question who decided to name the house brand that. Back in the 80s and early 90s, Performance's house brand was called...Performance.
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Old 08-02-17, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
MAs to the "compare to" pricing, that is widespread practice beyond just BD. When is the last time you bought anything at Nashbar at the listed MSRP?
Pretty sure never. The only things I buy from Nashbar are purchased only because of the low costs and I typically also know/accept the quality may be low and it wont last. I dont buy Ultegra STIs for example, just socks/jerseys/tires and the like.
That site could be so much better if it stocked more DIY products.
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Old 08-02-17, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Pretty sure never. The only things I buy from Nashbar are purchased only because of the low costs and I typically also know/accept the quality may be low and it wont last.
Just pointing out that they do the exact same thing. Show you an MSRP that the product is never sold at, to give you the impression that you are getting a good deal. I know Jenson does it too. Amazon did the same until recently. Retail shops thrive on that marketing strategy, to the point JCPenny got clobbered when they actually tried a reasonable MSRP on their clothes, instead of running perpetual "sales" that were de facto regular prices.

It is a common retail strategy, nothing more, nothing less.
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Old 08-02-17, 11:16 AM
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I purchased a bunch of bikes at shops, I wrench at a bike rescue, so I finally ordered a Steel bike Motobecane Café Noir $699, good value, I will put it together slow and check each component, will see what happens, Had done a lot of research, more good reports then bad, same can be said for bike shops. Supose to be here in Mid August.
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Old 08-02-17, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
So long as it is a better name than "Scattante."
I have always hated that name. BTW....It's Italian for agile or quick off the mark.
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Old 08-02-17, 01:08 PM
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BTW, in case you don't know, Bike Island is their scratch and dent site. Can often find bikes $100 or more off if you don't mind scratches or scuffs.
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Old 08-02-17, 01:24 PM
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I bought a BD bike many years ago, when they're new...an entry level mtb...it was not that good...wheels out of true...bearings dry...funky 29er geometry.

The recent BD bike I bought is very nice...both entry level bike (less than $300 each). Plenty of grease and very true wheels. Shifting was smooth as butter.

Only gripe I have is their bike always come with a few scratches. I have to touch up. Maybe its UPS fault.
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Old 08-02-17, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Just pointing out that they do the exact same thing. Show you an MSRP that the product is never sold at, to give you the impression that you are getting a good deal. I know Jenson does it too. Amazon did the same until recently. Retail shops thrive on that marketing strategy, to the point JCPenny got clobbered when they actually tried a reasonable MSRP on their clothes, instead of running perpetual "sales" that were de facto regular prices.

It is a common retail strategy, nothing more, nothing less.
Its called marketing and its as old as the use of money. It works on people who don't shop around. They use it on food, clothing, cars, houses, anything you can sell. I ignore it and shop around.
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