Over the weekend Adam and I visited four different bike shops in North Vancouver, including Steed, Dizzy Cycles, John Henry the bike man, and Cove Bicycles. Since I am the one looking for a bike, I figured out the basics of what I wanted and Adam left much of the question asking and such to me.
Not that I’m buying a bike this week. I’m just looking.
At any rate, these are my thoughts on the bike shops we visited over the weekend.
I was still on the crutches when we went in to Steed. Adam waved the sales guy on to me, and the guy spent the rest of the time talking directly to me and answering my questions, unless Adam was asking him a question, in which case he spoke to Adam. As one would logically do. Anyhow, he showed me the DeVinci Remix One and the Jalapeno, but we figured out that I’m probably more looking for the Remix. He was courteous, he spoke to me, and he knew what he was talking about. All good things. Plus the Remix is pretty awesome.
2) Dizzy Cycles
Dizzy is a smaller shop. We walked in and pretty much went through the same thing – Adam told the sales guy to talk to me, and then I basically took over with some support from Adam. Except that as long as Adam was standing next to me, even if I asked questions, the guy would reply to Adam, look at Adam, and talk to Adam. Adam went to talk to one of the other sales people for a while, and I had the guy to myself, which was the only time I think he ever looked at me. Now granted, I don’t know the technical terms for parts, and I can’t tell by glancing at a bike which fork is better, but I don’t take well to being an invisible girlfriend while the ‘boys’ chat. Adam wasn’t encouraging it by any means, but still. The bikes I looked at there were the Specialized FSR XC and the Enduro, neither of which seemed quite right, but even if I’d found the perfect bike I wouldn’t buy from there. He annoyed me.
3) John Henry Bikes
As far as I know, this shop is renowned on the north shore for being a great bike shop. I’ve been in there a couple of times and never really felt very comfortable there, but it’s a pretty big shop full of people who know what they’re doing. I’m not one of those people. The guy there seemed to know what he was talking about, although the only bike they had to show me was the Enduro again. It was much lighter than I expected (I tried picking it up at this shop,) but there are other little issues about it that I just don’t like. It just doesn’t feel right.
4) Cove Bicycles
This store was awesome. The salesperson spoke to me directly, answered my questions, and asked me questions that were actually really well thought out that no one had previously asked. He had two bike options to show me, the Kona Dawg and the Giant Reign 3. Both were very nice looking bikes, and while I couldn’t ride them, I did sit on them. I plan to ride the ones I’ve decided I like most before I actually get around to buying, of course.
Based solely on how I was treated, I would buy from either Steed or Cove. John Henry wasn’t bad, but compared to these two wasn’t good either. And as for Dizzy, well, talking to the boyfriend doesn’t endear you to the girlfriend. Even if they had a bike I wanted, no go. I’ve done the same before, when I bought the Wee Giant I have now, I tried it at a bike shop where the sales guy talked down to me, then left the store and bought the same bike at another shop. Yes, I am that kind of customer.
So it’s down to those three bikes, the Dawg, the Remix one and the Giant Reign 3. I’ll be doing a test ride before I decide. It was certainly fun doing the window shopping, though.