Sunday, June 20, 2010

Why buy a bike from me...

I was putting together a Salsa Vaya today and thinking why would someone want to buy a bike from me versus any other bike shop. In fact, why does anyone choose one shop over another to buy a bike? I pondered this as I:

Took each wheel off, put it in the truing stand, verified proper tension, roundness and trueness.

Removed each bolt and put a dab of grease on the threads. This includes all water bottle bolts, stem bolts, seat post bolts.

Replaced the stock brake housing with compressionless housing (to ensure the disc brakes have the best possible performance).

Removed the cranks and bottom bracket, smeared grease inside the bottom bracket shell, on the sleeve of the bottom bracket (this ensures that any crud and dirt that falls into the bb shell is captured in the grease), greased and tightened the cups, and then greased the 2-piece Shimano axle before reinstalling and torquing to the proper specs.

Add a few extra headset spacers (better to leave long and cut later than to cut too short) to the headset, grease the entire steerer tube so the bare steel doesn't rust before installing fork and adjusting headset.

Tune and adjust the shifting and brakes like I would do if it was my own bike, making sure each cable is the proper length.

Basically, I build each bike like it was my own bike. I build each bike with the confidence that it can be taken from my shop and ridden hard and long with confidence. I offer free adjustments within a reasonable length of time after the sale. However, I rarely see people since the bikes leave my shop set up properly and dialed in perfectly. I rarely work on my own bike because I don't need to. They perform flawlessly because I set them up that way. And I make sure the bikes I sell perform the same as my own bike. This level of service ain't free. I charge a bit more than the manufacturers "suggested retail price." But no one should ever be sorry or disappointed in the level of performance in a bike that leaves my shop.

In the past, I have had to build bikes or build wheels the morning of or the night before races. They always performed as expected during the race. I apply this to each bike I build knowing that if you are simply going for an hour ride or racing the next day, the one thing you won't have to think about is how the bike is performing.

That's why you should buy a bike from me. I need to toot my own horn more often.

(What's playing: Lucinda Williams Rarity)

3 comments:

MMcG said...

Nice - that's so awesome that you take so much time and care and show attention to detail like that.

thumbs up!

jacquie phelan said...

TEll you what. I will do more tooting too. I toot WAY too much on my own set of graduated horns, from 1 mm. up to 10 feet long.
So: resolved. Mike Varley is great.
HUG from a fan, and hornblowin die-hard Black Mountain shop rat.
Part time shop rat.
Nearly invisible shop rat.

blackmountaincycles said...

Thanks, Jacquie!