Discounted closeout bikes from your local bike shop

Are you looking for last year’s model? Let the Internet do your walking at CloseoutBikes.com.

Brick & Mortar bicycle dealers are invited to list old inventory to the Closeout Bikes website. Listing are free through May 2014.

Buyers look for deals that are listed by state. I see 35 bikes listed right now from two different california bike shops: Davis Wheelworks in Davis, CA and Nytro Multisport in Encinitas. There are a similar number of listings from Colorado bike shops in Boulder, Durango, and Cortez.

Check it out: CloseoutBikes.com.

taking bicycles a bit too seriously

Courtesy of ValleyWag:

Cisco Exec Makes Death Threat Over $4,000 Bike

Apparently enraged that his custom-built $4,000 Cervélo was a day late, Burton stormed into Cyclepath, a bike shop in Pleasanton, Calif., to get a final fitting. . . .

You can tell that the reporting isn’t completely reliable: there’s no way that a custom Cervélo could be had for $4000. Tip of the hat to Anh Tu.

Tipping the wrench?

I can relate to Fat Cyclist’s experience in “strange” bike shops, how they make you feel like an idiot after asking a perfectly reasonable question.

As a loyal LBS customer, I’ve also had the odd transaction Fatty describes, where I paid *more* than the asking price on stuff. Somebody has to make the owner’s boat payment, after all. You know that famous Karl Marx quote, “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need”? Mike (the LBS owner) assures me he really needs the boat. I guess that makes me a pinko commie.

Something Fatty did not mention: I’ve actually had bike mechanics who refuse to accept tips from me. That’s just weird. Is the practice of paying a gratuity now so rare in bike shops that mechanics don’t know what they are? If you’re a customer, do you tip your mechanic? If you’re a mechanic, does anybody still tip?

Prices or service

Guitar Ted rants a little about bike shops that still don’t get that the winning proposition of the Local Bike Shop is not everyday low prices but excellent service.

With pressure from online vendors and even Wal-Mart apparently entering the high-end bike market, there’s more pressure than ever for the local bike shop to compete effectively. Unfortunately, stories of intimidating visits to bike shops with smarmy employees and patronizing sales personnel still seem to outnumber the “I had a great experience!” experiences.

I’ve been fortunate enough to visit some great bike shops with outstanding and helpful people. When I visit a new shop, though, the help I get is usually indifferent if I can get any attention at all. I’m a knowledgeable consumer, so I can imagine the neophyte will be completely intimidated.

I’ll close by quoting G-Ted: “I think a lot of folks need to wake up to the reality that it’s more about the service and relationship with the customer and a lot less about the prices. If that happens in your bike shop, I know that a lot of people will buy items from a shop like that even if the prices are a bit higher because they are getting something else money can not buy.” Read more of his rant here.