Dcyclist wrote:Much has been said about the level of service experienced at bike shops, and I find myself agreeing, that there are many really poor examples out there. However, very little has been said about the other side of the coin. The outstanding service that can be found at many LBS. ... [and lots of other good stuff]
+1 on everything.
I've had exceptional service in some bike shops, and awful in others. I've had both from different staff in the same shop.
For the people defending all bike shops, I'm not sure you can really appreciate what it can be like if you are a woman
I'm an intelligent being, with a good head for mechanical stuff, and a pretty good knowledge of bike models/components/function etc. etc. I have never been condescended to or patronised anywhere else in the way I have been in some bike shops
I won't go into it too much because I've written about it in the 'Stuff people tell you in bike shops thread', but the last time I went into a shop suspecting my dérailleur cable was on the way out, and asked the shop to check for me (I didn't know how and was on the way home from a ride). Had he checked, he would have found it was hanging on by 2 threads, and I would have left my bike there and paid for the service time and the parts to get it fixed. He ignored my descriptions of how I'd adjusted the derailleur twice and it had gone straight out again, claimed it was because I had a different cassette/chain combo on, and refused to even do the simple check to see what the cable was doing. I was trying to wrangle an energetic toddler as well and gave up and left, found a lovely bike-mechanic forumite online, who gave me clear and simple instructions on how to check (yes, the cable was hanging on by 2 threads) and found another bike-mechanic forumite who was free that evening (night before we left for TDU) who happened to have spare cables and could do it for me.
I will go back to that bike shop, because I know there are other staff who are more professional or willing, in a completely empty shop when the staff are hanging around chatting, to help someone out, but there are shops where if that is the reaction I get on my first visit, I will never go back. There are places that have been outstanding - helpful - happy to talk me through purchases and decision, and I will go to those places and pay the premium rather than buy online, because I think this kind of service deserves to be rewarded.
FWIW, we had excellent service from BSC in Brunswick - bought our chariot and Kona Dew Drop from there in November - they spent time showing us how it all worked, got things in quickly, gave us substantial discounts on both the bike and trailer, and were very happy to adjust and work out the fit so it'd work for both of us. I don't know about the other stores, but I think it's a great loss to lose that kind of store.
Still a cyclist, albeit one who never rides any more....