Just wondering if anyone has a direct to consumer bike. What are your experiences with service at LBS? Seems you get so much more for your cash direct to.
I have a Commencal Meta AM 4.2 that I ordered direct. Shipping was $100 and it was here in a week. The parts spec of a bike $1k more when sourced the traditional way. Excellent service via email from Commencal when warranty work was required (although shipping a fork back to BC was a PITA).
There is almost nothing I need an LBS for from a service perspective, I can perform every aspect of maintenance myself, and I can still buy parts from any shop when needed, so that’s what I do.
I like riding a bike that almost no one else has, and I enjoy seeing how the purchasing process is evolving (plus, I’m a web nerd, so anything done via ecommerce piques my interest).
How confident were you that you’d like the Meta when you placed the order?
My purchase wasn’t exactly direct to consumer, but when researching for new bike, I came across Marin Bikes almost by accident, and they had no local dealers in the area at all. After consulting with Marin Canada, they set me up with a shop out West, as they didn’t have any inventory in stock for what I wanted, and I was able to get a bike with components that would have cost me at least $1000 more. I did my homework locally, and there was nothing even close. The shipping was around $100, and I had it in a week or so.
In terms of service, I blew apart my rear hub, which was warrantied, and all I had to do was go to an LBS that carried the brand and they did a normal warranty claim. Also, I cracked the rear triangle of my frame, which was noticed by a shop here doing routine maintenance. I sent a photo of the crack and serial number and within a week or so I was back on the trails. Their customer service for any other issues or questions has been amazing.
I too have always liked having a brand that aren’t common on the trails, so going with Marin was interesting from that perspective. There was the risk that the bike might not feel/ fit right having never even sat on it, but with all the research and discussions I had with Marin Canada, I was confident in my decision, and I couldn’t be happier.
If I had a endless supply if cash, then an LBS would have definitely been an option, but with a limited budget, I wanted to make sure I got the most for my money and I am confident I did; and wouldn’t think twice about doing it again…
About 75% confident.
I had multiple spreadsheets with geometry numbers of bikes I owned and had ridden, compared to a number of possible new steeds. I knew this one was a little longer and slacker with a slightly steeper seattube than my Yeti, which is what I was looking for and figured I would learn to like after ridingnit for a bit if it felt weird at first.
I was interested in the Rocky Altitude at the time but it wasn’t going to be available before my trip to Moab so I knew I needed something sooner. I’m happy with my purchase and also glad I could get something this high end but still in aluminum.
Who sells direct other than YT and Commencal?
Marin, Cannyon, and Motobecane. (I can pick up at US address if I go that route).
Right now I have a few options I’m considering.
YT Jeffsy 29
Commencial Trail 29
Marin Rift Zone 2
Specialized Stunt Jumper ST 29 Alloy add dropper and pick away at it.
The new Trance is going to be too rich for my blood (too slack too)
I purchased an RSD Mayor last summer. RSD are based in Ontario, and as others have said it was well equipped for a good price. MEC carried the RSD Sheriff at the time, which was similar in geometry to the Mayor, but much lower spec. I was able to test ride one and it felt good, so I ordered.
Been a great experience with them, I love the bike so much I sold my full suspension and now have only the hardtail fatty (with a 29+ wheelset for summer). The Bike Pedaler has serviced my bike and they have been great to deal with, though I do a lot of my own maintenance as well.
I mean I’m on a Chromag I bought from @JoshM and have my marin. So far I’ve done it all. Just feel like bike shop might be a bit off if I throw down dough on a bike elsewhere and bring it in (press fit BB comes to mind)
Fezzari (no idea if their bikes are any good) sells direct exclusively and Intense seems to be doing direct to consumer now too. (Not sure why anyone in Canada would buy Intense that way as I checked one and it was about $800 less at MEC.)
I’m not so sure about that. More so on the really high end bikes. From what I hear they are not really making much on the high end bikes. I personally don’t have a direct to consumer bike but I do order a lot of items online and tend to support local shops with labor work.
If you look, there are plenty of direct buy companies…
Ones that haven’t been mentioned are:
Whyte bikes; based out of UK, but have a US distributor that ships to Canada. There was one reviewed in MB Action not long ago and they look sweet.
Diamondback; They seem to have ramped up their bikes as the Release line has had some great reviews. They only ship within the US though.
Staran Cycles; These guys are based out of Burlington, Ont and I have read some nice reviews on Pinkbike and other sites that say they are the real deal. I personally like that it is Canadian.
I am sure there are others, you just need to look…
In all cases, the parts spec on these bikes can be had for far less than you would end up paying at a LBS, and it must be a viable option, or companies wouldn’t be offering them up this way…
I don’t get the “a shop won’t want to work on my bike because I bought it online” attitude.
No, they won’t do the free tuneup you sometimes get when you purchase a bike from them, but it would be a pretty silly business decision to turn away paying work because the bike was purchased somewhere else. I don’t think I have ever seen a shop that exclusively fixes bikes that they have sold.
Wanting a shop to spend hours dealing with warranty issues for a bike purchased online is something totally different, and I can see them not wanting to open a can of worms like that.