How to Buy a Bicycle (the rest of the story)

Lately I’ve been thinking about writing a blog post on how to buy a bike. So, I googled it and started looking through the links.

They all roughly say the same thing…

“Here are the different types of bikes.”

“Go to a reputable shop and make sure the salesperson asks you what you’re looking for. Don’t trust the one’s who push a bike on you that just doesn’t make sense, they’re trying to get rid of what they have on the floor.”

“Get a bike that is fit to you.”

“Check the warranty. What kind of service is offered?”

Blah, blah, blah!

S0 I suggest that if you want to read that kind info then google it yourself and read away. I think I’m headed in a different direction.

“What’s wrong with being personal?” A question Kathleen Kelly poses in the movie “You’ve Got Mail”.

When I moved to Tennessee the first thing on my agenda was to find a bike shop. MY bike shop. I want to walk into a shop and feel like I’m home. To sit down and hang out. To chat about bikes and other nonsense.

The first shop I went to was like that, but only when the owner was there. He ended up getting a teaching job at the local communty college and let his employees run the shop. The deal was as long as it paid for itself, he’d keep it open. It’s gone.

The next shop I stopped in to was down the road from the shop I ended up at. I walked in and the vibe was not there. I never went back. That shop closed and I heard it had moved to another town.

After hopping around, in and out of a few more, I landed at my current shop. A friend had recommended it. This kind of recommendation should not be taken lightly!

First perception…it’s located on the first floor of an old house off the beaten path. But I felt entirely welcome and at home! It’s a small shop. One where most of the time I would have to order what I wanted. Just the basics. And that has never been a problem. Over the last few years I’ve built two bikes exactly the way I want them and also purchased one off the floor stock. Okay, I switched out a few parts!

The point is, I found my home shop where I feel welcome. Whether I’m buying something or not. I can get whatever I want. I can hang out. I even started helping them out when it got busy, which led to a job there. And I trust what they do.

Home.

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2 Responses

  1. zactly said good read. I spent an hour yesterday in “my shop” in the basement talking bikes and working on a snow machine for me. Is a shop the owner will pull parts off the display, say “try it out” Been that way for 30 years.

    • Glad to hear there are more sops out there like it! Good for our industry, me thinks. The owner at my shop sounds a lot like yours.

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