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Tucson, AZ
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With all of these "I-hate-my-LBS" threads, I thought I would start one to say how much I enjoy the guys at my local bike shop. I wear their jersey constantly, a jersey that was given to me by the bike shop. I usually head into the shop for small things, but usually buy a few more items while we chat about rides, races, and other bike related stuff. Discounts, free items, and the occasional advice are always common at my LBS. I sometimes see the mechanics during their lunch break or buying coffee in the morning (I live about 1/4 away from the LBS).

Anyone else out there enjoy their LBS?
 

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I've never experienced a truly awful LBS. Now that I work in one, I can appreciate how difficult it is to keep everyone happy.

I like that my gives me a paycheck. I don't like that my LBS gives me a very small paycheck :p
 

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Keep The Rubber Side Down
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Yep!

I have a friend who worked part time at a bike shop when we were all in high school. For a graduation present, his parents match the money he saved up and he bought the place. It was smaller than a single wide trailer, but it was his. Twenty years later, it's grown into it's own building with several hundred bikes just hanging from the ceilings alone!
www.centercycle.com
Now, it's one of the most recognized bike shops in the area. Why? because he's always been all about customer service and product knowlage. Not only about his bikes, but the components, accesories; and most importantly his customers.

The LBS isn't dead:thumbsup:
 

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What could go wrong ...
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for me bike shops are more about the people that work there than the products they sell. I shopped my LBS for a bike recently and ended doing a custom build (again). I only bought 1 part for the new build from them - CK headset - and the guy is going to open the shop Sunday night so i can come by and face the steerer tube and install the headset and chase and face the BB and install the XT crankset. Since i only need to do this once every ten years, I dont own the tool to face a frame - and he's buying the beer. These guys actually ride mtbs and know their stuff. Props to Ratboy and Will.
 

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Thread Killer
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the LBS's around here are really fun to go into...very rarely, have i had a bad experience; but the few that pop to mind are solely based off of a desparate salesman trying to get commission. with those few exceptions, all the workers are avid bikers and are glad to take the time and explain to the consumer what all the parts on a bike mean, and do for the ride. i had one guy tell me that he wants his customers to be happy on their bikes, regardless of where they purchase it. that, to me, speaks volumes
 

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Mellow Yellow said:
I have a friend who worked part time at a bike shop when we were all in high school. For a graduation present, his parents match the money he saved up and he bought the place. It was smaller than a single wide trailer, but it was his. Twenty years later, it's grown into it's own building with several hundred bikes just hanging from the ceilings alone!
www.centercycle.com
Now, it's one of the most recognized bike shops in the area. Why? because he's always been all about customer service and product knowlage. Not only about his bikes, but the components, accesories; and most importantly his customers.

The LBS isn't dead:thumbsup:
That's a cool story!

I love my LBS. The guys that work there are great and always fun to talk to while your bike gets worked on, you shop around for parts or whatever. They are honest, and give fair prices on bike work and products.
 

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I love/like my LBS because he doesn't mind me coming in with bikes that aren't from his shop.He's passioned about mountainbike's,they know him very well at Specialized;) . When i showed him my Tracer,we talked about it for an hour or two,then the wife called"dinner is served...COLD!"
 

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Went to my LBS last week to buy a new seat post for my sons bike. Told the LBS owner that I had thought about upgrading my seatpost and letting my son have my old one. We looked at what he had in stock and when I was about to settle on one he says "I have this one...it's used". It was a $180 carbon post that looked as though he had just taken it out of the box. I bought it for $70. This is just one example. I also let him work on my bikes but he is more than willing to give me tips on the things I can do myself...heck, he's even loaned me tools! I buy a few things over the net and the BIG shops (ie shoes)...but I do all the business I can with my LBS.

I've also met a lot people there that are now riding buddies.

Mikey
 

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I love my LBS also. I live a 1/4 mile away and it is TOOOOOOO convenient. I have always had good service and an explanation of what work was done. They would even show me how to do it when I asked.
 

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Killer b.
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Several years ago the manager of my LBS told me about a Rohloff Speedhub for sale privately and gave me the guy's details. I bought it and phoned him up to let him know. He invited me in first thing Saturday morning (before opening) and gave me the run of the workshop to get it fitted up, also helping from time to time, so I could use it in a 12 hour race later in the day. Great guy and great service. More recently, another guy had a bike workshop set up locally. I could go down there any time and use his spare stand and his tools to work on my bike. No charge. He also sold me parts at way under retail. Brilliant stuff!
These guys both went way over and above. Thanks Allan and Gus.:thumbsup:

b.
 

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Chilling out
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i feel like I have a pretty good relationship with my two LBS quite frankly.

No. 1 is where I got my current bike, and although ownership has changed hands I get along real well with the new crew. Of course, only one person really changed over, and all the old-hands are still "involved" so it's more like a refocus/upgrade than anything else. Great place to go hang out, shoot the bull, deal with stuff, whatever. If only they were closer to either home or work...

No. 2 is where I got my previous FS bike back in '02. They established themselves well that year as I decimated the frameset, and had continual warranty replacements. They still take care of me when I'm in now and again. While I do tend to do most of my own wrenching they've always worked out well for me when I've needed more stuff done than I can do - and usually on the drop - very cool. That said, I know there's some less-quality people there and I'm just fortunate enough to have a good relationship to always have good people working with me.
 

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I had to go to a LBS 20 minutes from my house to find a mechanic who was
truly exceptional. Rather than dwell on the closer LBS which did substandard
work, I now drive the extra distance. Every time I ride, I constantly marvel about
how well all the mechanicals work and how lucky I was to find the guy.
 

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song of the saw-whet owl
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Zoke2 said:
for me bike shops are more about the people that work there than the products they sell.
thats pretty much all of it! since getting into mtb'n not too long ago, ive learned the importance of the LBS and can seriously appreciate a certain "mountainbike outfitter" shop i frequent. They are all about mountainbiking, ride avidly, and ride in the same areas I like to ride, so their recommendations on specific needs, places to ride based on skills, or products that will hold up better than others in the often harsh terrain are not going to be guesses. Add a laid back and almost family like atmosphere and you have one special place. I now sometimes feel like a jackass not buying my bike there, but it won't be long before I end up doing so.
 

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bi-winning
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I worked at a shop for 4 months last summer, and they still give me the same discount they gave me when I worked there. The discount was not the best staff discount, but now that i am a customer, it is pretty generous.
 

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Loser
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I used to frequent the closest LBS, good wrench but horrible customer service. I ordered stuff from them and it never came in, one time I ordered the same part 3 times and it still never came in! I buy most of my biking stuff on line and do most of my own work, and this experience just reinforced why that was such a good idea. Once I came to expect the level of service at this local shop, I just accepted it. I knew if it wasn't on the wall it wasn't worth asking about it, and even if it was on the wall, I needed to do my own research.

The wrench left this LBS and went to work at the local EMS. EMS sells general outdoor gear, bikes are just a small part of what they sell. When I needed some fork work done I figured I'd bring it to the wrench I knew even though it was further away and it was EMS.

After buying some stuff from them and joining some of their rides I finally know what everyone raves about when they have a good LBS. The "corporate" side of EMS means the prices are fair and business practices are solid, the local side gives me club discounts on top of their fair prices and friendly, local staff. I bring my bike in and more times than not its on the stand and fixed by the time I'm done browsing. I bought a crankset from them a few months ago, I worked on putting the old rings on the new cranks while the wrench put everything together. It was great. When my front triangle was warrantied, they did the swap over for the cost of new cables and casings - no labor!

I still buy on line when I see a deal, but I have no problem buying from them - I don't even mind paying full price at EMS now and then considering all the great deals, advice and help I've received from them.

John
 

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I have no idea how two of our three local shops stay in business. The extent of their idiocy is always astounding.

The third shop is pretty good. Friendly, helpful, good folks. Where I go for small things.

For big, esoteric stuff, I call The Path. Better than having to explain things to the LBS.
 

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oldnoob said:
thats pretty much all of it! since getting into mtb'n not too long ago, ive learned the importance of the LBS and can seriously appreciate a certain "mountainbike outfitter" shop i frequent. They are all about mountainbiking, ride avidly, and ride in the same areas I like to ride, so their recommendations on specific needs, places to ride based on skills, or products that will hold up better than others in the often harsh terrain are not going to be guesses. Add a laid back and almost family like atmosphere and you have one special place. I now sometimes feel like a jackass not buying my bike there, but it won't be long before I end up doing so.
BWB?
 

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Jisch said:
I used to frequent the closest LBS, good wrench but horrible customer service. I ordered stuff from them and it never came in, one time I ordered the same part 3 times and it still never came in! I buy most of my biking stuff on line and do most of my own work, and this experience just reinforced why that was such a good idea. Once I came to expect the level of service at this local shop, I just accepted it. I knew if it wasn't on the wall it wasn't worth asking about it, and even if it was on the wall, I needed to do my own research.
John
Hmmm I wonder what lbs you are talking about...:D
Same experience here....

My lbs here in CT has been awesome...
They have great friendly customer service. I can hang out there for hours BSing about anything..
The asst manager there will go out of his way to get me the parts I need quickly at prices competitive with,If not better than online shops.
I don't even bother buying online anymore.
Recently I had to do an oil change on my fork. When I went in to order the oil he said "don't waste the money" he let me "borrow" both bottles (weights) I needed from the shop, gave me some tips and sent me on my way..:D
He's done that with tools and other things I have needed as well..

This reminds me I need to bring them a 12 pack this week when I go in to pick up my newest (way cheaper than anywhere online) purchase...:thumbsup:
 
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