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Torontonians - a little help please.

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Torontonians - a little help please.

Old 12-30-05, 07:20 AM
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Torontonians - a little help please.

For those of you who live in Toronto, what would be your recommendation for a bicycle shop where I could buy a drop handled touring bike.

I'm arriving in a little over a week and realised that I just don't know anywhere.
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Old 12-30-05, 07:36 AM
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Urbane Cyclist is a good one, as well as cyclepath on bloor. I have heard bicycle specialties has some nice stock but I have never actually been to it before. Dukes on queen street might also be worth a try, but they specialize in mountain bikes. If you can't find their addresses I can probably help with those too (too lazy atm)
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Old 12-30-05, 07:57 AM
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Bay Sports has the Giant touring bike (disc brakes) on sale for $1500 Canadian. Looks like a great choice for loaded touring.
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Old 12-30-05, 08:23 AM
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Not a fan of disc brakes, not least because I have no experience at repairing them.
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Old 12-30-05, 01:18 PM
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Cyclepath on Bloor (now called Sweet Pete's I think), is a good store. The last time I was at Dukes on Queen (in Sept) they had a big selection of Road Bikes. I didn't look for touring bikes, but Dukes is one of the most popular bike stores in Toronto.
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Old 12-30-05, 02:11 PM
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Further to my post. Bay sports has a boxing week sale. No tax on new bikes and 30% off on year olds. Have a look.
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Old 12-30-05, 08:58 PM
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I have purchased bikes and had repairs done at Dukes, and have been fairly happy. But last I checked, they had a measley selection of touring bikes... but then, not many stores specialize in touring bikes, do they? Most of the more interesting Toronto-area stores seem to have one, or maybe, two touring models.

Pedlars on Avenue Road is a nice store, but expensive. I frequently visit my neighbourhood Cyclepath, on Danforth (near Coxwell). Typically, they offer one or two touring models, but service is excellent. The other day I noticed several new bicycle stores on Queen Street East (east of Broadview)... I can't wait to browse...
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Old 12-30-05, 09:42 PM
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There are a lot of bike stores. Urbane Cyclist, already mentioned, iis very popular. Near my office is Bikes on Wheels (on Augusta Ave. in Kensington Market), and near my home is Cyclepath (Yonge and Eglinton)and Spokes and Sports (Avenue Rd North). Cyclepath is a small chain, so there are several locations in Toronto. Do you know where you'll be in the city?
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Old 12-31-05, 11:46 PM
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Sales aside, I think Urbane is the best since they seem to be focused on touring, everyone will sell racks, and a few paniers, but finding staff or touring bikes is a stretch at most places. Also for accessories Mountain Equipment Co-op is great. There is also Mariposa for an all out custom touring bike, but I can't recomend them for anything else, the people are nice but service is terrible.

Proof of the Urbane pudding is I rode their bike right out of the shop for a 1000 mile loaded tour. Nothing failed on the tour except a tire, and the cranks needed tightening at 500 miles (which is normal). Urbane built the wheels, they were perfectly true at the end of the trip. I don't think you get that kind of result when you just buy any old bike assembled however. I did warn them that I was riding the bike over the horizon imediately, and we picked components that they assembled with that in mind.

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Old 01-01-06, 03:00 PM
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I'll add my name to the list of those recommending Urbane, but I'm adding the link:
https://www.ucycle.com/

They have a great selection, excellent staff and just a great ambiance. I had them put together a tour bike for me last year at this time. As others have said their attention to detail and quality of workmanship is superb.

I'm not sure if they are cheap, or even have a Boxing Day sale. When it comes to my bikes, that is simply not part of the vocabulary.
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Old 01-01-06, 05:30 PM
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My shop is Pedlar. As mentioned above, they are not cheap, but they do know bikes.
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Old 01-01-06, 07:26 PM
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Another thought is www.craigslist.org Toronto's craig's list typically has a lot of options and much less expensive than any of the bike shops.
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Old 01-01-06, 11:56 PM
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Urbane is not cheap in a match your cheapest price way. I heard some guy try to take them down 1000 bucks on a 4K recumbent, and they were not interested in matching a suburban price.

They are cheap in the following ways:

- Sell good value in-house frames
- Will build out your bike with whatever components you want on it including as many as you like from bikes or parts you already own. I prefer to build my own stuff, but they do it basically for free, can't beat that.
- Will try to talk you out of upgraded components if they think the only difference is technology that doesn't apply to touring, like race lightweight, or expensive rims. You can get what you want, but they will suggest bargain options if you ask.

So they aren't cheap, but you can get a reasonable bike there if that is your objective.
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Old 01-03-06, 10:54 PM
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I have also had many great experiences with Urbane. I picked up my Ortlieb's from them. Most of my fixed gear parts have come from them. They sell Brook's saddles and have their own model of touring bike in addition to other components.

I've seen them try to talk people out of buying the wrong stuff even through they would have made more profit on the items.

Highly recommended by me. They are my secondary bike shop. My primary is a local bike shop in town. Eventually I will write about both on a new web page.

~Jamie N
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