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BikesDirect

Old 01-08-10, 06:56 PM
  #1  
mohland
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BikesDirect

Anyone ever bought a bike from bikesdirect.com?
If so how was your experience?
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Old 01-08-10, 07:02 PM
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You can find many threads here by searching.
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Old 01-08-10, 07:10 PM
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Good service and quality of bike for the money. I recently replaced the stock saddle and will do so with other parts (i.e. drop bars, brakes, wheels/tires, etc.).

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Old 01-08-10, 10:32 PM
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I'll say this - add at least $100 to the price to have it built-up by a competent bike-mechanic. Then add the cost of all tune-ups and parts that break the first year - and all the next years, too. No warranty that does you any good comes with a mail-order bike. I strongly urge you to reconsider and buy from a store-front bicycle store/shop.

If you just put it together ("It don' look two hard 2 mee...") without knowing all there is to know about how and why - you will have a serious problem on your hands - and under your butt.
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Old 01-08-10, 10:39 PM
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I bought a bike from them and if you have some skills to turn a few tools then they are fine. If you do not have any skills with bikes then you should get someone to put the bike togther for you. I did it in about 40 minutes and at the time 2 years ago I did not know a lot but it was easy. Do not be mislead they are not the local bike shop if you have problems but I would not hestitate to buy a bike from them again. If they were a shameful business as some say they would not have made it this far. Just make sure you know what you are doing otherwise go to the local bike shop.
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Old 01-08-10, 11:14 PM
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How To Assemble a New Bike
https://bicycletutor.com/new-bike-assembly/
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Old 01-08-10, 11:51 PM
  #7  
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After buying two BD bikes, I eventually found out that I'm much happier with my LBS bikes. Both BD bikes are now hanging in the rafters, one will be made into a future cargo bike, and the other bike's fate has yet to be decided.
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Old 01-08-10, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by ZippyThePinhead View Post
You can find many threads here by searching.
But it's hard to shill using someone else's topic....
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Old 01-09-10, 05:33 AM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by dynodonn View Post
After buying two BD bikes, I eventually found out that I'm much happier with my LBS bikes. Both BD bikes are now hanging in the rafters, one will be made into a future cargo bike, and the other bike's fate has yet to be decided.
Can you explain why you feel this way / what makes the LBS bikes preferable? I own a bikesdirect fixie that's now on loan, and I'm not sure I'd ever buy a road bike from them because I'd rather spend another $100-$200 to have somebody make sure I was fit properly, but I want to hear why BD bikes end up in the rafters.
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Old 01-09-10, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by deacon mark View Post
If they were a shameful business as some say they would not have made it this far.
neither is Walmart.
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Old 01-09-10, 01:11 PM
  #11  
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Although I've not bought anything from BD let alone a bike, but I find it ironic considering that there are numerous cyclists on this forum that change our parts (handlebars, brakes, cranks, wheels etc...) would be cautious about assembling a bike from BD. I mean these bikes are likely come mostly assembled anyways. All one has to do is put the pedals, handlebars and wheels together. Nothing rocket science about it. Tuning derailleurs or adjusting brake cable? Again not difficult with the rather helpful posters in the Bicycle Mechanic section and websites like bicycletutor.com. If you are first timer into cycling, sure walk into an LBS and get their service which is great.
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Old 01-09-10, 01:46 PM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Panthers007 View Post
I'll say this - add at least $100 to the price to have it built-up by a competent bike-mechanic. Then add the cost of all tune-ups and parts that break the first year - and all the next years, too. No warranty that does you any good comes with a mail-order bike. I strongly urge you to reconsider and buy from a store-front bicycle store/shop.

If you just put it together ("It don' look two hard 2 mee...") without knowing all there is to know about how and why - you will have a serious problem on your hands - and under your butt.
The bike comes 90% assembled. I did the rest with my bike tools. Purchased the bike in May 2009 and nothing has broke yet. And that's after a few crashes and once throwing the bike out of frustration. Silly me.
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Old 01-09-10, 08:30 PM
  #13  
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You realize, of course, that you just set yourself up for something to break?

I'd want a mechanic to examine the bottom-bracket, hubs, and headset for proper lubrication. Not just spin on the pedals and put on the wheels.
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Old 01-10-10, 01:38 AM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by Panthers007 View Post
You realize, of course, that you just set yourself up for something to break?

I'd want a mechanic to examine the bottom-bracket, hubs, and headset for proper lubrication. Not just spin on the pedals and put on the wheels.
You are assuming the minimum wage summer jobby kid would actually take the bicycle apart and go through every nook and bearings. Right. You do know that bicycles arrive at LBS mostly assembled to right? Perhaps if you spend $$$$ on a carbon bike you may get a more experienced tech to go through it. But don't expect that kind of detail on regular bikes. There's a thread about how much a the wages of a bike mechanic vs. T&L to ensure profitability.
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Old 01-10-10, 07:36 AM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by mohland View Post
Anyone ever bought a bike from bikesdirect.com?
If so how was your experience?
You'll need to let us know a couple more relevant things to answer your question properly. It's not just the price that's a major factor in a bike purchase...
  • Is this gonna be your very first bike purchase, or have you owned several?
  • What sort of budget have you set?
  • How long have you been riding or are you just starting out?
  • Are you competent to set up the mechanicals of the bike?
  • What type of usage and distances are you looking at?

These sorts of things can possibly influence your decision whether to buy on-line or not. The more experienced you are with bikes and cycling, then the more likely I'd be to recommend buying on-line. I's also dependent to a certain degree on what type of bike you're thinking about; a $350 hybrid or a $3500 carbon racer. El-cheapo's okay online, but upper end? Mmmm...

However, if you're a novice, then I'd say a visit to your LBS is the best (only?) plan.

Cheers.
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Old 01-10-10, 09:37 AM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by wunderkind View Post
You are assuming the minimum wage summer jobby kid would actually take the bicycle apart and go through every nook and bearings. Right. You do know that bicycles arrive at LBS mostly assembled to right? Perhaps if you spend $$$$ on a carbon bike you may get a more experienced tech to go through it. But don't expect that kind of detail on regular bikes. There's a thread about how much a the wages of a bike mechanic vs. T&L to ensure profitability.
Why does everyone assume that a bike mechanic is a "minimum wage summer jobby kid"?

When assembling a BikesDirect bike, we stripped it. Completely. Then we built it up properly. We earned the $40-$60 we charged to build them.
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Old 01-10-10, 09:42 AM
  #17  
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Originally Posted by bigvegan View Post
but I want to hear why BD bikes end up in the rafters.
Because after the warm fuzzy feeling of getting a new bike wears off you realize that a BD bike isn't all that and a box of cracker jack.
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Old 01-10-10, 09:48 AM
  #18  
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If I were buying a BD bike I'd be doing so knowing that there are potential problem areas. I'd assume that the shifting would need tweaking, I'd check all the cables, I'd check the bottom bracket and headset to make sure it spins smoothly. I'd probably do a full check of every bolt. If I saw any problems with the rotating parts I might take it to a shop, but more likely I'd disassemble it myself and redo it.

The average inexperienced person would not do any of this and have problems.
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Old 01-10-10, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
When assembling a BikesDirect bike, we stripped it. Completely. Then we built it up properly. We earned the $40-$60 we charged to build them.
Kudos for doing it right, but I believe you are the exception rather than the rule. I would wager most shops would do the same assembly they do for every other bike they receive, which generally doesn't mean disassembling everything.
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Old 01-10-10, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
Why does everyone assume that a bike mechanic is a "minimum wage summer jobby kid"?

When assembling a BikesDirect bike, we stripped it. Completely. Then we built it up properly. We earned the $40-$60 we charged to build them.
Good for you sir! Go search for that thread on bike mechanics and what they make. There were a few mechanics that chimed in to provide inside perspective.
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Old 01-10-10, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by wunderkind View Post
Good for you sir! Go search for that thread on bike mechanics and what they make. There were a few mechanics that chimed in to provide inside perspective.
Most bike mechanics in this area make $10/hour or so. I was on salary making $30K/year. Of course, I was the manager also, not just a mechanic. At my previous employer, where I was just a mechanic, I was making $13/hr.

The only people I've ever worked with who made less than $10/hour were indeed high school kids. We let them sweep up, vacuum the showroom, take out the trash, and work as sales people. We also taught them how to work on bikes - on their own bikes. "Kids" weren't allowed to assemble bikes until they had gained a sufficient level of experience and maturity to perform a task that might put someone's life in danger - like a bike assembly.

Obviously, I'm sure this isn't the case in all bike shops. I can think of one shop in Indy that is very lax in this regard. But it has been my experience that many bike shops hire older, more experienced mechanics and the "kids" are more like assistants. Sadly, based on economics, I'm sure that there are many unqualified people assembling bikes. Look at Wal-Mart, for example. Or some of the people who assemble new bikes at the factories.
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Old 01-10-10, 10:54 PM
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Here in the New York Metro, the mechanics tend to be hispanic or Mexican. They are hired at minimum wage or less but the tend to do OK and some are better than others. Because of the high rents, Mexican labor is used even extensively at expensive resturants.

The best mechanics tend to have more than 20 years experience working on bikes. To get this type of experience, you'll have to find some old timer who's been in the business since the early 80's or 70's.
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Old 01-10-10, 11:02 PM
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Has anyone else noticed that OP hasn't been back or posted anywhere else on the board?

Hmmmm.......
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Old 01-10-10, 11:08 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
Why does everyone assume that a bike mechanic is a "minimum wage summer jobby kid"?

When assembling a BikesDirect bike, we stripped it. Completely. Then we built it up properly. We earned the $40-$60 we charged to build them.
If I ran the mechanic's area of a bike-shop, that would be expected. And I would certainly do the same as well. Hiring a 16 year old Dad's Garage-Rat with a pair of vice-grips would require my training him/her how to do these things and do them correctly. I could just tell Jr. to slap 'em together and move it out - but that wouldn't exactly charm the customer into returning to us. And I would hope all the shops in the area just did the slap & push. It would create a steady trickle of return business.

I may well be that head-mechanic relatively soon. Until then, I'll continue doing custom work here and there - and do it right.
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Old 01-11-10, 01:32 PM
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Whoa! I just visited BD and boy, I can see why it is such a viable place to buy bicycles and DIY assembly. I can get a Tiagra gruppo roadie starting $599 brand new! or an entry level Sora for under $400!
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