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So I told my LBS about Probikekit

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So I told my LBS about Probikekit

Old 08-29-06, 03:12 PM
  #26  
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The LBS is an authorized Michelin retailer going through the proper channels whereas PBK is most likely not.
Is this idle speculation or is this somewhat based on verfiable sources. Either way - don't care. Tires are $40 with tax here at LBS. I can get it $20 shipped (matching brand and size) on PBK. Sorry can't do it.
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Old 08-29-06, 05:47 PM
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Let's not forger that Michelin is a French company, and that France is a lot closer to he UK than the US. In general, we get a good price on all european kit (especially our own!), and get royally done over for far eastern and US stuff. The specialized allez (basic) costs 550ukp, 1040$! FSA, Truvativ, Shimano etc is all expensive. And we rarely get the really nice far eastern stuff (like Nitto, Sugino, DiaCompe).
My centaur group cost 280ukp, cf over 300 for 105, let alone Ultegra.....
Psimet, can you explain those laws some more? They sound kind of cartel promoting to me [although price fixing makes sense, for say pharmacies...]
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Old 08-29-06, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by operator
Is this idle speculation or is this somewhat based on verfiable sources. Either way - don't care. Tires are $40 with tax here at LBS. I can get it $20 shipped (matching brand and size) on PBK. Sorry can't do it.

I belive it to be true. Many people are wondering where they are getting the Pro-race2's in such large numbers to be selling them for such a low price.

A number of local importers into Australia have been looking into it and I have been told that many companies/importers worldwide may be trying to close them down. They also sell hardware/plumbing supplies & some other products (can't remember right now what).

Pro race 2' are $90AUD each here, PBK can deliver them around 5-7days for $34AUD, less if you buy more. If they are going to close, I am going to stock up.

There are guys buying bulk here in Aust and re-selling on Ebay.
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Old 08-29-06, 07:11 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by acorn_user
<snip>Psimet, can you explain those laws some more? They sound kind of cartel promoting to me [although price fixing makes sense, for say pharmacies...]
Dave
Sure...they're the basis for the anti-trust laws in the US. They have to do with the old A & P grocery stores and how local grocery stores could not compete with the big A & P due to the great volume pricing that A & P were getting.

So mom and pop sue the big A & P and the governement decides that all suppliers that are supplying competing retailers in the same markets must provide pricing parity. To follow example above it is like saying that if a corn seller sold corn to the local mom and pop for $0.05 / ear and it sold to the A & P for $0.04 / ear, and the two were competing in the same market then the corn seller is in violation.

The catch is in the definition of the terms "competing", "same products", and "markets." It allows for a lot of wiggle room. That's where branding comes in. If you sell the exact same product under a different brand name then you can set whatever pricing you want for direct competitors....
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Old 08-29-06, 07:19 PM
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I always thought PBK offered the best deal but I was dead wrong last week. After bought a pair of Sidi Hi-Tech from them for $250, I found out that BikeTireDirect offer that pair for just $200 I guess I have to do more searching next time.
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Old 08-29-06, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Overkll
Unfortunately, this is not the case. LBS COST is $3 > PBK RETAIL, so the LBS is LOSING $3.
This assumes "cost" is invoice. I've had similar discussions, where retailers have pointed to "cost" on a computer screen, but when I ask them if it's the same as invoice they refuse to answer. I suspect many of them just wing up a number to have something to show and to set a bottom line they won't go below, that includes some margin for operational cost.
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Old 08-29-06, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by sfrider
This assumes "cost" is invoice. I've had similar discussions, where retailers have pointed to "cost" on a computer screen, but when I ask them if it's the same as invoice they refuse to answer. I suspect many of them just wing up a number to have something to show and to set a bottom line they won't go below, that includes some margin for operational cost.
Agreed. Ever buy a car and have the dealer show you how much he REALLY paid the mfr for it? doubt it.
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Old 09-01-06, 06:14 PM
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Is it possible that a lot of the stuff at PBK is "gray market" merch, similar to what is done with the the camera industry (as in very limited warranty coverage compared to normal goods)? Any have any warranty problems with stuff from PBK?
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Old 09-01-06, 08:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Psimet2001
Sure...they're the basis for the anti-trust laws in the US. They have to do with the old A & P grocery stores and how local grocery stores could not compete with the big A & P due to the great volume pricing that A & P were getting.

So mom and pop sue the big A & P and the governement decides that all suppliers that are supplying competing retailers in the same markets must provide pricing parity. To follow example above it is like saying that if a corn seller sold corn to the local mom and pop for $0.05 / ear and it sold to the A & P for $0.04 / ear, and the two were competing in the same market then the corn seller is in violation.

The catch is in the definition of the terms "competing", "same products", and "markets." It allows for a lot of wiggle room. That's where branding comes in. If you sell the exact same product under a different brand name then you can set whatever pricing you want for direct competitors....
So how does Wal*Mart get around this?
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Old 09-01-06, 08:55 PM
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Originally Posted by halfspeed
So how does Wal*Mart get around this?
Good question. I have limited understanding of the specifics (spent 2-3 hours learning about it in a meeting at corporate run by our corporate lawyers - "ZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzz").

While the A&P example makes it seem as though quantity sensitive pricing would not be OK...it actually is. It may be that Walmart is getting the exact same pricing on many shared products, but their volume levels put them at a larger discount in the supplier's pricing matrix...that and their low operating margins help them achieve a lower markup to the end customer...regardless of their cost for the items....remember that when it comes to the law we're talking list price...not net or discount or rebate....

Like I said...I don't know the specifics about the law as it pertains to retail. All I know is that at work we have spent 100's to 1000's of hours making sure that we maintain pricing parity.

Then again maybe it's because my company has a soul.
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Old 09-01-06, 10:16 PM
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PBK does cut out the middle man, especially on tires, as most tires are manufactured in Europe. Same with the Campy componentry. 11speed also has great prices on Campy components, because they are in Italy. Go figure.

However, if you'll notice, the FSA carbon cranks and other componentry made in Asia is the same or even more expensive than what we pay here in the U.S. I can easily find FSA components here in the U.S. that sells much cheaper than any European website to date.
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Old 09-01-06, 10:47 PM
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Originally Posted by halfspeed
So how does Wal*Mart get around this?
that "same product" piece is a part of it, too.

That is why you'll see the Hambone1001 at one store and the Hambone1000-A at another. Even though it is the same product, same specs.
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Old 09-01-06, 10:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Hambone
that "same product" piece is a part of it, too.

That is why you'll see the Hambone1001 at one store and the Hambone1000-A at another. Even though it is the same product, same specs.
Yup...we used to do that all the time at Lowe's. Helps gives them wiggle room around Home Depot when it comes to big name tools (eg - DeWalt DW705 or DW703 or DW705A). Sometimes the difference is simply different packaging, or store specific labeling.
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Old 09-01-06, 10:53 PM
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Also remember that this has to do with the price being offered TO a retailer from the supplier...not what they sell it to the public for.
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Old 09-02-06, 05:52 AM
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Absolutely correct. I always check yahoo exchange rates before I buy from PBK and it seems that May and August may turn out to be all time low (USD:GBP ratio). For those of you who buy groupsets or in bulk, this is important to pay attention to. Here's a link: http://finance.yahoo.com/currency/co...BP&amt=1&t=1y:)

Originally Posted by jamiewilson3
Actually,

The dollar is relatively weak right now compared to the pound. 1.88 $/pound vs 1.45 $/lb a few years ago. If we had 2001 exchange rates, everything from PBK would be about 30% less. But the cost the the bike shops would be somewhat less as well. A weak currency helps exports and hurts imports.
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Old 09-02-06, 06:01 AM
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High-end Swiss watches? I had to pay customs for an order of alligator/ostrich straps in the UK for my watches. Not sure if US Customs are as lax as you say from my experience.

QUOTE=botto]doubt it would really matter anyway. US customs are pretty relaxed compared to European countries and Canada. even if they even bother to charge you, then it's pennies.

at least that's been my experience with buying and selling watches.[/QUOTE]
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Old 09-02-06, 06:08 AM
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Very true. I've made similar observation through browsing their website. However, I would go to say that for an online retailer, who sells low(for certain parts), they offer rather high quality customer support.



Originally Posted by Patriot
PBK does cut out the middle man, especially on tires, as most tires are manufactured in Europe. Same with the Campy componentry. 11speed also has great prices on Campy components, because they are in Italy. Go figure.

However, if you'll notice, the FSA carbon cranks and other componentry made in Asia is the same or even more expensive than what we pay here in the U.S. I can easily find FSA components here in the U.S. that sells much cheaper than any European website to date.
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Old 09-02-06, 06:10 AM
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Yeah, and they probably won't need any servicing help.


Originally Posted by platypus
Funny, that was my first thought as well. "Gee, they ought to be sourcing thier stuff from PBK instead of whoever they're getting them from now..."

If nothing else, they could be improving thier margins.
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Old 09-02-06, 08:19 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by samsation7
High-end Swiss watches? I had to pay customs for an order of alligator/ostrich straps in the UK for my watches. Not sure if US Customs are as lax as you say from my experience.

QUOTE=botto]doubt it would really matter anyway. US customs are pretty relaxed compared to European countries and Canada. even if they even bother to charge you, then it's pennies.

at least that's been my experience with buying and selling watches.
[/QUOTE]

Not that this really has anything to do with cycling, but in my experience buying watches overseas
and having them shipped to the US, I've only had to pay duties once. That's one in about a dozen.

With two PBK orders, I've not had to pay anything but they were both under $200.

Also, alligator/crocodile watch straps are kind of a special case which require a fish and wildlife
form/inspection. If they don't have the proper paperwork, they get routed to some office in Alaska for inspection which can take a looong time. Keep this in mind should one ever want a crocodile saddle cover.
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Old 09-02-06, 09:15 AM
  #45  
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Pelotonracer, if you are in Canada, then you will soon be hit with a customs bill that will wipe out your savings. Which is a good thing.

Two things to know... the first is that a lot of online discount shops can offer these amazing deals because they are selling OEM products. Not that there's anything wrong with th eproducts, but it's not entirely ethical on the retailer's part.

The second thing is that your LBS survives by providing services that online etailers do not. There is money to be made in repairs and maintenance. Most shops also have a loyal cadre of customers who feel a sense of community at the shop, and most LBSes will go out of the way to help regulars out, give them special pricing -- never cost, but often cost+25 -- and just like seeing them around.

Very few shops are going to go out of their way for customers who buy a lot of their stuff online. They'll be profesional and courteous, but few will treat them like a friend of the shop.
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Old 09-02-06, 11:35 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by DrPete
Anyone else noticed that their PBK purchase was a "gift" in the eyes of customs???
Not me. I bought some bibs for 20 Pounds and I had to pay $18CDN in taxes and duties. Still was a good deal, but not AS good a deal as I was hoping for. It was not marked gift.

Have you asked them to mark it as gift and they agreed? If so that ups the limit to $60CDN from $20CDN.

When I order stuff over $20CDN I usually have it sent to the US where a friend of mine goes 4 or 5 times a year and brings me back my order. That's how I get my stuff from Performance as well.
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Old 09-02-06, 11:37 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by acorn_user
Let's not forger that Michelin is a French company, and that France is a lot closer to he UK than the US. In general, we get a good price on all european kit (especially our own!), and get royally done over for far eastern and US stuff. The specialized allez (basic) costs 550ukp, 1040$! FSA, Truvativ, Shimano etc is all expensive. And we rarely get the really nice far eastern stuff (like Nitto, Sugino, DiaCompe).
My centaur group cost 280ukp, cf over 300 for 105, let alone Ultegra.....
Psimet, can you explain those laws some more? They sound kind of cartel promoting to me [although price fixing makes sense, for say pharmacies...]
Dave
That's what I was thinking as well so I started checking some on-line prices with regard to Scott bikes and found that they are actually more expensive than I can go into the LBS and purchase them. Plus, I can only imagine what shipping charges would be from there on a complete bike.
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