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My LBS changed

Old 05-08-21, 09:25 AM
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FelixScout
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My LBS changed

So I do not know if this is the proper place for this material but here goes.

About a month ago my LBS announced it was going to shut down after about 47 years in operation since the owner was looking forward to retirement, but there still would be a store. You see, it was to become a Trek store, and is one now since it just reopend. They kept some of the stock, offered all the employees their jobs with most accepting, and will change the name and affiliation.

And I do not know how I feel about this. On one side, I'm happy the store is still there in some form since it is in a good location basically just off a bike path and only mile from my house. And I have used it more since the other LBS near me scaled back their hours extensively. On the other side, I wish it was continuing as an independent operation of high quality since i worry by becoming brand specific that means they limit their ability to work with owners of other bikes.

Maybe I'm also spoiled formerly living in large urban areas with a healthy number of LBS stores catering to many different segments. Who knows.

Thoughts on the shift?

P.S. here is the store in question: https://www.facebook.com/TrekBicycleEaston
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Old 05-08-21, 09:54 AM
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If you want something else besides Trek and Bontrager? You have your answer.
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Old 05-08-21, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by FelixScout View Post
So I do not know if this is the proper place for this material but here goes.

About a month ago my LBS announced it was going to shut down after about 47 years in operation since the owner was looking forward to retirement, but there still would be a store. You see, it was to become a Trek store, and is one now since it just reopend. They kept some of the stock, offered all the employees their jobs with most accepting, and will change the name and affiliation.

And I do not know how I feel about this. On one side, I'm happy the store is still there in some form since it is in a good location basically just off a bike path and only mile from my house. And I have used it more since the other LBS near me scaled back their hours extensively. On the other side, I wish it was continuing as an independent operation of high quality since i worry by becoming brand specific that means they limit their ability to work with owners of other bikes.

Maybe I'm also spoiled formerly living in large urban areas with a healthy number of LBS stores catering to many different segments. Who knows.

Thoughts on the shift?

P.S. here is the store in question: https://www.facebook.com/TrekBicycleEaston
I drive over 80 miles to reach a decent bike shop of any sort, so I ain't crying too many tears for you.
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Old 05-08-21, 10:26 AM
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My LBS is a Trek Store, but they service all makes of bikes and sell used bikes from all makes as well, I don't think you will have any problems dealing with the new ownership and you already know most of the staff. Cheer up and enjoy the ride!
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Old 05-08-21, 10:56 AM
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A Canondale store opened up near me in 2013. They only sold Canondales and other related brands. It closed after a few years. Limiting yourself to one brand seems like a poor business plan for an LBS. There are plenty of LBSs in the area that have much more diverse inventory. I would be concerned the Trek store will eventually suffer the same fate.
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Old 05-08-21, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by FelixScout View Post
So I do not know if this is the proper place for this material but here goes.

About a month ago my LBS announced it was going to shut down after about 47 years in operation since the owner was looking forward to retirement, but there still would be a store. You see, it was to become a Trek store, and is one now since it just reopend. They kept some of the stock, offered all the employees their jobs with most accepting, and will change the name and affiliation.

And I do not know how I feel about this. On one side, I'm happy the store is still there in some form since it is in a good location basically just off a bike path and only mile from my house. And I have used it more since the other LBS near me scaled back their hours extensively. On the other side, I wish it was continuing as an independent operation of high quality since i worry by becoming brand specific that means they limit their ability to work with owners of other bikes.

Maybe I'm also spoiled formerly living in large urban areas with a healthy number of LBS stores catering to many different segments. Who knows.

Thoughts on the shift?

P.S. here is the store in question: https://www.facebook.com/TrekBicycleEaston
I guess time will tell, but you might as well get used to Trek or Bontrager branded products, which in an of itself isn't a bad thing. More to the point though, if the store is more of a corporate store, will you lose the personal connection you had when the place was locally run? You might, or might not. Try them out and post back your experience.
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Old 05-08-21, 11:12 AM
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Many, many, many stores concentrate on just one brand, even if they do offer a few others as a sideline. The best store near me is a Trek store (locally owned I think, not company-owned) and I shop there even though I had to go elsewhere to get my current bike. One learns not to look for, say, a Specialized bike in a Trek store, a Giant in a Cannondale store, etc.
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Old 05-08-21, 12:11 PM
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I don't really like one company stores, too sterile. You could do worse than bontrager accessories though. When my LBS dropped Trek, there were some things that I missed.
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Old 05-08-21, 12:51 PM
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Trek has bought a few shops in the Philly area over the last few years.
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Old 05-08-21, 01:02 PM
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Sad to see the small guy go but times are changing. Heck, back in 2005, there was a shop called SuperGo about 30 miles away. They had DA shifters for $199. I had stopped by on the way home from a ride just to browse. I needed a new set for a bike so I went to the little small long time business guy down the street. I told him about the price and asked if he could match it. He said no, how about half the difference, just to make something. He said no. I told him that it would save me the drive and he would get some business. He said no, couldn't do it.

OK, I drove the 30 miles, stopped to eat a Tommy's Chili Burger along the way and made a good time out of the day, and saved $100 on the shifters. Not to mention, they had DA rear derailleurs for $64, not tax 4th of July sale. Heck, I picked up 2 for that price. Using one still and still have a brand new one in the tool box.

Hey, I try to support the local guys but throwing away an extra $100 every time I need to buy something? Nope!

Though I would not use the Trek store anyway. Have one buy us, way overpriced, lack of selection, and do you want Bontrager or Bontrager? I go online and save MY MONEY!!!!
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Old 05-08-21, 01:52 PM
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Originally Posted by mihlbach View Post
A Canondale store opened up near me in 2013. They only sold Canondales and other related brands. It closed after a few years. Limiting yourself to one brand seems like a poor business plan for an LBS. There are plenty of LBSs in the area that have much more diverse inventory. I would be concerned the Trek store will eventually suffer the same fate.
Same by me, a Cannondale store closed after 3 year. Now there's a Trek store that opened 3 miles away 2 years later.

Luckily there are 2 other very good shops near me that i'v been doing business with and they ain't going anywhere. One, Brands, has been around forever and I bought my first real road bike from them in 1973.
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Old 05-08-21, 02:06 PM
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Why do you need to know how to feel about it?

Enjoy your old memories of the previous place.

You either adjust to the new owner and their ways or you don't.

Try to make some new memories, whether it's at this place or another.

Don't get too bummed out about things you don't have control of.
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Old 05-08-21, 02:17 PM
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Iíve got 2 Trek dealers within a few miles of me, that I use on occasion, not a fan of Bontrager anything though.
However, my favorites are Benís Cycle 18 mi away, and Yellow Jersey 67 mi away.
Both are well worth the drive, always looking for an excuse to visit both.
Tim
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Old 05-08-21, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by tkamd73 View Post
Iíve got 2 Trek dealers within a few miles of me, that I use on occasion, not a fan of Bontrager anything though.
However, my favorites are Benís Cycle 18 mi away, and Yellow Jersey 67 mi away.
Both are well worth the drive, always looking for an excuse to visit both.
Tim
There are some nice local places around Milwaukee. Truly Spoken, Bike Smiths, Fyxation, Zu Zu Pedals in Port Washington and of course Bens. I still shed a tear for the Bike Fixers (formerly Cory the bike fixer) which closed its doors last year. They were my personal favorite and I was on a first name basis with the owner and all the mechanics there.
But Wheel and Sprocket pretty much saturates the area. and lately, Erik's has been popping up all over the place.
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Old 05-08-21, 02:31 PM
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The same thing happened here in the Portland area. There was a local chain of shops that were Trek dealers, but independently owned (so they also carried Orbea and several other brands). The owner wanted to retire, and apparently Trek made a reasonable offer. Trek closed a couple of the locations (probably the less profitable ones) -- I don't know if the staff were offered positions at one of the other stores, but some may have opted to go work at a different nearby bike shop.

It's too soon to see what the long-term effect will be. I now buy from a different shop because I'm friends with its owners. But before I met those owners, I did like small chain -- they had an impressive inventory because they could draw on all of their stores and their warehouse, yet each shop knew its customers and had some great clearance deals.

I do think it's increasingly difficult for independent bike shops to make a go of it.

FelixScout, I hope you have good experiences with your new-old shop.

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Old 05-08-21, 02:33 PM
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MRT2 -- Kudos to whoever named the shop Zu Zu's Pedals. That's brilliant!
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Old 05-08-21, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by FelixScout View Post
So I do not know if this is the proper place for this material but here goes.

About a month ago my LBS announced it was going to shut down after about 47 years in operation since the owner was looking forward to retirement, but there still would be a store. You see, it was to become a Trek store, and is one now since it just reopend. They kept some of the stock, offered all the employees their jobs with most accepting, and will change the name and affiliation.

And I do not know how I feel about this. On one side, I'm happy the store is still there in some form since it is in a good location basically just off a bike path and only mile from my house. And I have used it more since the other LBS near me scaled back their hours extensively. On the other side, I wish it was continuing as an independent operation of high quality since i worry by becoming brand specific that means they limit their ability to work with owners of other bikes.

Maybe I'm also spoiled formerly living in large urban areas with a healthy number of LBS stores catering to many different segments. Who knows.

Thoughts on the shift?

P.S. here is the store in question: https://www.facebook.com/TrekBicycleEaston
I remember that location as Genesis Bicycles from when I lived in the Lehigh Valley over 40 years ago. They built my first set of custom wheels that were among the best I ever rode and lasted many, many years without even needing a true. I am sorry to see then change, but that owner truly deserves a great, well earned retirement. 47 years is a long run. I remember the owner back around 1980 had a beautiful Richard Sachs framed custom bike.

Sounds like the new owners did it the right way. Give them a try you may still like them.
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Old 05-08-21, 04:16 PM
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Bike shops can come and go. I will buy what I need, where I need, at a price I need whether it be a shop or internet.

Now when they closed down Papa Mio's Italian restaurant, I was hurt! Best lasagna ever!
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Old 05-08-21, 04:35 PM
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swe had a local chain go to trek. not a lot of change faster service maybe and they can deal with more e bikes, the e bike store I bought my bike from changed hands and ow they wont work on any bike they did not sell. and even then its 2+ weeks. the trek store is much faster.
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Old 05-08-21, 04:40 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
There are some nice local places around Milwaukee. Truly Spoken, Bike Smiths, Fyxation, Zu Zu Pedals in Port Washington and of course Bens. I still shed a tear for the Bike Fixers (formerly Cory the bike fixer) which closed its doors last year. They were my personal favorite and I was on a first name basis with the owner and all the mechanics there.
But Wheel and Sprocket pretty much saturates the area. and lately, Erik's has been popping up all over the place.
Oh Yeah, sorry I didn’t mention Bikesmiths by UW Milwaukee, I’ve bought a bunch of stuff from them, mostly through their eBay store.
Recently ordered a Sturmey Archer 2sp kickback hub, 3 hours after I clicked buy, the owner shows up on my doorstep with the part.
Turns out his warehouse is only a mile from my house, nice guy, always check their site when what I’m looking for isn’t too vintage.
Tim
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Old 05-08-21, 04:42 PM
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Trek stores are popping up like Dollar Gens.

fwiw, the store can service other brands if they choose to do so. It may not be "certified" service for other brands.
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Old 05-08-21, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by trainchaser View Post
My LBS is a Trek Store, but they service all makes of bikes and sell used bikes from all makes as well, I don't think you will have any problems dealing with the new ownership and you already know most of the staff. Cheer up and enjoy the ride!
Trainchaser is correct. One of the LBS's in my area went from a Bike Line to a Trek Store. They service all brands and will order non Trek/Bontrager parts and accessories on request. As Trainchaser said, you already know much of the staff so you need not worry.

Just a thought...How many of those who hate Trek and/or Bontrager have actually ridden or used the brands? I'm sure that some have, but I wonder how many just hate because they are big established brands.
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Old 05-08-21, 06:50 PM
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I jsut bought my first trek bike the e=smallest bike they sell for my tiny granddaughter.
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Old 05-08-21, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by MAK View Post
Trainchaser is correct. One of the LBS's in my area went from a Bike Line to a Trek Store. They service all brands and will order non Trek/Bontrager parts and accessories on request. As Trainchaser said, you already know much of the staff so you need not worry.

Just a thought...How many of those who hate Trek and/or Bontrager have actually ridden or used the brands? I'm sure that some have, but I wonder how many just hate because they are big established brands.
I own & ride a trek. No complaints.
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Old 05-08-21, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
There are some nice local places around Milwaukee. Truly Spoken, Bike Smiths, Fyxation, Zu Zu Pedals in Port Washington and of course Bens. I still shed a tear for the Bike Fixers (formerly Cory the bike fixer) which closed its doors last year. They were my personal favorite and I was on a first name basis with the owner and all the mechanics there.
But Wheel and Sprocket pretty much saturates the area. and lately, Erik's has been popping up all over the place.
Milwaukee really has a great variety of shops. Being NW depending on how fast I want something it's W&S, Emory's or REI but Ben's always comes through on my odd ball and vintage stuff and usually gets my service stuff when not a DIY thing. I've probably bought something in every shop in the city at one time or another. From South Shore, Johnson's, Allis, Patio to Extreme I spread it around.
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