Is your LBS L?

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by simonali, 16 Jan 2008.

  1. simonali

    simonali Guru

    Apologies if this has been discussed before. I'm new, you know!

    Anyhoo, in this day and age of internet shopping, where prices are cheap and postage is free, do you still use your nearest bike shop?

    I don't have what I'd call a good BS local to me and tend to just hop in the car and drive to somewhere where there is a shop that sells the sort of kit I'd like to buy or, if I don't need to see what I'm buying, I just get it off the net.

    The shop where I ended up ordering my new bike from was a nice friendly little place, but didn't have a great deal of stock due to the size of the premises and was charging high prices* for what they did have. This makes me think that I'll probably not go back there too often.

    Even when I cycled everywhere and didn't own a car I didn't use my local bike shop, as I didn't think it was very good. I used to ride from Windsor to High Wycombe and go to one there instead. I've always been a grazer when it comes to bike shops and will buy the stuff I want from whoever has it in stock.

    Does this make me a bad person? :wacko:

    *probably just rrp prices really?
  2. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Moderator

    I do both internet and LBS, Bristol has got a number to choose from, my nearest is a little pokey old fashioned shop - they have been nice to me ... bought most of our bikes from there... but stock can be limited. Internet is convienent for parts but if you want a discussion about the relative merrits of different options or hands on then you need the LBS. And then you need to get it serviced or those quick fixes when something has gone wrong.

    Both the internet and LBS have their uses but if you don't use the LBS it may not be there when you NEED it.
  3. Cyclista

    Cyclista New Member

    I think like most people it depends on what I am buying. Bikes, clothing etc will be bought from the LBS, but chains, tyres, tubes and other consumables will usually be bought online unless I need :wacko: them urgently. My LBS is a ferry ride and about 4 miles away, so not really local as there are 2 other bike shops within 2 miles of my house but I go to my LBS because I know and trust them.
  4. Globalti

    Globalti Legendary Member

    I've got about a dozen shops to choose from within a 20 mile radius but only a couple are what I'd call good - Ride On in Rawtenstall and Bicycle Doctor in Rusholme. Not L though.
  5. piedwagtail91

    piedwagtail91 Über Member

    i use two lbs for quite a few things. i just got a schmidt dyno hubbed wheel for a landmark birthday because it was cheaper there than on line.
    got bars and stem and other bits from anothere lbs because they were comparable with ribble (15 miles away) after i'd got 10% off.
    for stuff whre the price difference is great i don't have much choice ( being skint!) but to find the cheapest which unfortunately sometimes maens either mail order or a ride to ribble.
  6. wafflycat

    wafflycat New Member

    middle of Norfolk
    My LBS is either Halfrauds or 'Paul's Cycles' (spit, spit) neither of which I will willingly use. I do, however, go into Norwich and use the finest LBS in East Anglia, that is Specialised Cycles in Connaught Road, Norwich. Not as big as Uncle Madgett's Magic Emporium in Diss, but Specialised know their stuff and for bike bits and 'stuff' Specialised can't be beaten for quality of service.
  7. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    My experiences of LBS's is that they are often less well informed than I am and only interested in how much cash I want to give them immediatly for a bike I dont want .

    The net is where I bought most of my stuff.
  8. John the Monkey

    John the Monkey Frivolous Cyclist

    I'm probably lucky, there are some great LBS' near me.

    Local to home is Supreme Cycles in Crewe - fixed a broken spoke in my rear wheel not so long ago and retrued it - good price for the work too.

    On my commute is Rick Green Cycles, great shop with a surprisingly large range. They saved me from a long walk/train ride when my back tyre spontaneously separated from its bead. Opened the shop early, and insisted on fitting tyre and tube while I got warm. My new bike will be bought from them.

    Local to work is Bike Boutique (near the Sugden Sports Centre in Manchester) I get tools, tubes (anything small enough to be carried on the bike) and numerous small repairs plus the bike's servicing there. The guys that run the shop are great, and have given me loads of free advice since I started doing my commute.

    I tend to buy clothes etc on line (I like dhb and Foska) but anything else will come from the places listed above.
  9. hambones

    hambones Well-Known Member

    Waltham Abbey
    I had a LBS just 200yds from my door until just before Christmas when it closed down :wacko: They were a good bunch and would match internet prices where they could although deliveries took longer - they'd get things in on a weekly order. Part of their downfall was that they were perhaps too friendly - the place was always full of people drinking coffee and bantering about bikes but no-one spent any money!!

    I usually stock up on consumables online but if I need to discuss anything 'bike' I know someone who works for Tritons in Barkingside - couldn't fault him for knowledge and servicing.
  10. redfox

    redfox New Member

    Bourne End, UK
    My LBS (Saddle Safari in Marlow) is local and very helpful. I will only buy on-line if they stock it, cant order it and cant suggest an alternative that they can order instead.

    Although I am prepared to to pay more to shop at the LBS, this isn't usually the case, in fact quite often the LBS is cheaper.
  11. John Ponting

    John Ponting Über Member

    I started using my LBS when I was at school (I left in 1963!) - Stan Miles in St Albans. He was a club member and well respected at the time.

    A club member then bought the LBS in Hatfield and became the mecca for club riders. I bought several bikes from there through to the mid 80s as well as some excelent hand built wheels (that are still round, straight and tight today).This shop supplied me, my wife and eventually our daughter. the same shop has also now supllied bikes for our grandsons. However, it isn't the same shop - Jim eventually sold out and it is now part of a 3 shop group.

    For a while I visited Bob Addy's shop in Watford.

    Latest 2 grandsons bikes have come from another BS in Ware and Stevenage. They are helpfull and seem to know their stuff but not in the same 'clubman' league.

    My next bike could come from the Hatfield shop or Byercycles - they both supply Tifosi frames and bikes through Chicken.
  12. I tend to do both internet and lbs's (Ive got a few to choose from) and usually find prices are comparable. I tend to use the net occaisionally for run of the mill items. If I need them fast or its a part for something I haven't changed before then I prefer to go to a lbs and get some advice or aftersales service if I need it.
  13. OP

    simonali Guru

    Do Hoars still have a shop there or has it gone now?

    (long time no go to Marlow!)
    BrumJim likes this.
  14. TheDoctor

    TheDoctor Exterminate Christmas! Moderator

    I count Byercycles as my LBS (even though they're 11 miles away). The frame I had from them in '91 is still going strong, as are the wheels I got at around the same time. Mostly competitive on bits and bobs.
    A couple of years ago I snapped my tyre lever while out on a ride, so I dropped in to buy some replacements.
    They were awaiting a delivery and didn't have any to sell me, so they gave me some used ones so I wasn't stranded by the next p**cture.:wacko:
  15. redfox

    redfox New Member

    Bourne End, UK
    I'd never heard of them in Marlow, just phoned the LBS to check, apparently they closed the Marlow branch about 12 years ago.

    They have also just closed the High Wycombe branch, as the area is being redeveloped and they got an offer they couldn't refuse. So another LBS goes to make way for another huge Tesco. :wacko:
    BrumJim likes this.
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