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Colleagues that ask for cycling advice

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by jashburnham, 12 May 2008.

  1. jashburnham

    jashburnham New Member

    What is it with colleagues asking for cycle advice and then completely ignoring everything you tell them? 2 of my colleagues have bought Gary Fisher Hybrids in the last few months despite my advice against hybrids. Both commute no more than 4 miles in London with barely any hills, yet both plumped for stupidly heavy hybrids with triples. One is a fit 40 year old the other is a very fit 29 year old who was advised my me and even (to my amazement) by a fella in Evans to get a singlespeed, but no he gets the Fisher. It's like banging your head against a brick wall, bikes are only ever used for commuting and the rare pootle on a weekend. Why do all these hybrids sold in LONDON bike shops come with triples? It's nonsensical (or perhaps it;scos they are so heavy you need a triple to get over a speedbump)...

    Rant over.
     
  2. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    I take it you're not married then.
     
  3. Fnaar

    Fnaar Smutmaster General

    Location:
    Thumberland
    I guess it's just what fashion dictates as a 'bike' in the popular mindset... reasonably cheap, multi-functional (i.e. will handle a canal path, bridlepath etc when the fancy takes 'em)... it's like suspension too... saw a woman buying a bike the other day, in an lbs, with a friend, and their clear opinion was that suspension was "necessary".
     
  4. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    A more reasoned response would be - Consider it a compliment that they have asked you for your advice, they have probably also consulted a few others in order to get a balanced view. They have then taken the new information, balanced it with their needs and wants and then made a final decision. And try not to take it too personally that people don't always go with your recommendations.
     
  5. I often ask the woman I work with why she wipes down her Brompton every time she comes in to work. It confuses me, it's not a horse!!!
     
  6. gbb

    gbb Legendary Member

    Location:
    Peterborough
    I think peeps WANT to do the right thing, buy the right kind of bike, but then reality takes over once they've got to spend the money.
    The times i've been asked 'whats best for me'...ive explained the pros and cons, ....and then they go buy a £80 clunker...AFTER i've tried to encourage them specifically NOT TO.
     
  7. barq

    barq Senior Member

    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    To be fair a lot of people have seen so many sub £100 bikes that it must have registered as the 'normal' price to pay. I can't remember the mean expenditure for a bike, but it is shockingly low.
     
  8. Mister Paul

    Mister Paul Honky

    Location:
    North Somerset
    A colleague of mine (newbie cyclist) has a 3 mile commute, mainly on the flat. He bought a single speed, after taking advice from 'proper' cyclists. Within a couple of months he'd swapped it for a hybrid with a triple, and is far happier with it.
     
  9. PrettyboyTim

    PrettyboyTim New Member

    Location:
    Brighton
    Out of interest - what did you suggest they get? It seems to me the hybrids are a reasonable choice. Their commutes are short and as they will be fairly new to cycling, the flat handlebars with the fairly upright posture will probably be appreciated in the London traffic. The fact that they'll easily be able to fit racks and mudguards will be great for commuting as well.

    I'm not sure what the problem is here - I would have thought a Gary Fisher hybrid would make a very sensible choice for a utility bike, especially if it'll be the only bike you own. And as for the double vs triple thing - why not have a triple if you can? The difference in weight would be unnoticeable to the vast majority of cyclists.
     
  10. OP
    OP
    jashburnham

    jashburnham New Member

    For the 29 year old guy I suggested a singlespeed - his commute is basically flat, he's young and fit and is determined that he'll only use the bike for commuting and only in the summer. He's not mechanical and is something of a tightwad and was worried about outlay in terms of servicing etc. Singlespeed seemed to me to be the best option and I say that having started my commuting efforts on a hybrid some years ago. As for the older guy (our MD) I suggested a flat bar roadbike or a specialized tricross as he does ride on gravelly cycle paths with his kids on occasion. He nearly bought my old Allez off me and likes the feel and the zip of roadbikes. I figure why not spend another £100 and get something better - esp as they are saving money on the cycle to work scheme.

    As for the triple factor - you just won't ever need one in London surely, most people I know that commute on them never shift out of the middle ring. Plus IME triples are far more likely to suffer from shifting problems particularly when they are not really looked after/maintained - and my MD doesn't even know how to lube a chain properly!
     
  11. Cycling Naturalist

    Cycling Naturalist Legendary Member

    Location:
    Llangollen
    The trouble with being seen as expert is that a beginner assumes that your advice is based on expert use and therefore can be ignored as the beginner gets what everyone else has.
     
  12. PrettyboyTim

    PrettyboyTim New Member

    Location:
    Brighton
    I guess that's true; more to go wrong. I only use the bottom ring when going uphill with the boy on the back or in the child trailer.
     
  13. Crock of Gold

    Crock of Gold Guest

    Location:
    London
    I'm seen as the cycling "bod" amongst my immediate circle of friends, colleagues and associates, now.

    When talking about cycling I find myself going off into detailed advice mode. For example, yesterday a bloke said to me, whilst our kids played on the swings, that he was going to upgrade his bike and enter the modern world by buying a £80 MTB from Halfords. My other mate said he was going to as well, as he had a child trailer and wanted to use it in the nice weather.

    I started to go off into bike advice mode:

    "You don't need a MTB if you are not up a Mountain; spend just £300 and you will get a decent bike etc..."

    ...and then realised I was being a bike expert bore. Too much detail for what they required. Too much money involved. So I shut up and smiled. And just asked them if they were up for a few drinks next weekend.
     
  14. Maz

    Maz Guru

    I'd never heard of Gary Fisher Hybrid bikes until now. I'm no expert, but they look pretty decent to me, all branded components etc.
     
  15. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Location:
    York, UK

    I dunno. If I never use my large ring, what's to go wrong with it? Mine is really just there for decoration, the amount I use it..;) I can see there is more to go wrong with a single versus a multiple, but not a double versus a triple, really...