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bikesdirect.com

Old 12-29-21, 07:54 PM
  #1  
riderrenee
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bikesdirect.com

My review is for those of you new to bikesdirect.com and not especially skilled in bike mechanics.

First, bikesdirect.com isn't the cheapest. After purchasing my bike from bikesdirect.com, I found the Diamondback Metric 1 available at diamondback.com for the same price, *with professional sales reps available on the phone. In fact I spoke with a helpful rep today.

Second, adjustments to assembly are necessary if you want to do right by your bike. Be prepared to spend at least $100 more at a shop after assembly. Don't be mislead by "See how easy" assembly is in large type on bikesdirect.com'se page. Assembly is easy, but adjustments are not, and they ARE part of assembly on the website's fine print.

My bike arrived with front breaks unaligned, tires needing truing, gears needing adjusting, etc. Are you skilled at these fixes? Do you have time to learn these skills? Is all that you need to learn available in video? Would you even know how to detect if these adjustments are needed?

Most importantly, I found customer service deplorable and inexcusable. They came across as non-inclusive, as though only seasoned bikers are worth treating with respect. Additional to reaching out to brands directly, I recommend reaching out to a local bike shop upfront. Ask them about the bike(s) you're interested in. See what they have to say about anticipate adjustment costs on a boxed bike. Ask about their opinion of bikesdirect.com. Spend your time and money with people who treat all levels of bikers with courtesy, enthusiasm, and respect.
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Old 12-29-21, 08:46 PM
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Welcome to BF! Hope you enjoy your bike once you get it set up. The BD pros and cons have been thoroughly discussed here. It's a shame you didn't come to BF before your purchase, you'd have known better what to expect. It's true that BD works best for folks who have some basic bike or at least mechanic skills.
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Old 12-29-21, 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by riderrenee View Post
First, bikesdirect.com isn't the cheapest. After purchasing my bike from bikesdirect.com, I found the Diamondback Metric 1 available at diamondback.com for the same price, *with professional sales reps available on the phone. In fact I spoke with a helpful rep today.
what BD bike did you buy? You don't mention...
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Old 12-29-21, 11:55 PM
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I have had more than a few people come over to have thier bikes given a once over after purchasing from Bikes Direct. All were satisfied and got a fair deal. It would appear that no mater who you buy a bike from you are going to need it worked over. Often bike dealers do not make it a comfortable procedure. Smaller bike shops are so stressed with trying to make ends meet they find it hard to commit the time needed to tune a new bike up. It's all part of whats going on in the bicycle industry.

The last Bike Shop I was in was huge. It had everything there, shoes, clothing, computers, helmets, lights and assistants. There was also a fair lineup of brand new bicycles of varying types to consider ordering for future delivery. There was a small kiosk of common parts and tools. Everything was supported with a nice friendly staff sitting at desks to negotiate your purchase and financing. WOW... It was like a high end car dealership...

I was very uncomfortable. I guess I am more of a used car lot guy... and yes I am that shade tree mechanic...

Warranties? We don't need no stinking warranties... Ha

Anyway I do say, welcome to the forum, and looking forward to updates on your new bicycle and it's ride... Fun Fun FUN
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Old 12-30-21, 03:05 AM
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Buying something that needs assembled and adjusted when you canít assemble or adjust seems like a bad call.
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Old 12-30-21, 04:31 AM
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You can buy diamondbacks locally at places like REI and LBS
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Old 12-30-21, 05:46 AM
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OP may be new here but I'm guessing he's not new to negative online reviews. Non-inclusive? The horror....
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Old 12-30-21, 06:11 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
OP may be new here but I'm guessing he's not new to negative online reviews. Non-inclusive? The horror....
Seriously? Maybe not the best phrase to use here, but we could tell what he meant. According to the OP, BD's phone personnel aren't trying to be helpful to people who aren't already experienced in bike maintenance. In other words, they're useless for the people who need them most.

TBH, I think it's naive to expect that people on the phone can walk inexperienced people through adjustments. But I also think that warning is worth pointing out.

I'm a lot more worried about the authenticity of people who only write positive reviews than I am negative. I find it's a lot easier to detect an invalid criticism than it is false praise by a bribed "reviewer".
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Old 12-30-21, 06:47 AM
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I agree with livedarklions on his point about expecting over the phone instruction covering adjustments. In the past I had occasion of walking people through software without the luxury of remote connection. A simple tutorial turns into an hour-long ordeal ending with a frustrated user. I'm just a tech guy, give me a break. I am certain Bikes Direct customer service reps are not trained in over the phone instruction nor do they have 3 hours available to walk a person through adjustments. On the flip side they must be absolutely clear on their website to tell the customer professional adjustments are recommended.
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Old 12-30-21, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
I agree with livedarklions on his point about expecting over the phone instruction covering adjustments. In the past I had occasion of walking people through software without the luxury of remote connection. A simple tutorial turns into an hour-long ordeal ending with a frustrated user. I'm just a tech guy, give me a break. I am certain Bikes Direct customer service reps are not trained in over the phone instruction nor do they have 3 hours available to walk a person through adjustments. On the flip side they must be absolutely clear on their website to tell the customer professional adjustments are recommended.

Where I think OP's review goes off the beam a bit is when BD is compared to the "professional reps" of Diamondback (sales rep is not the same thing as tech support, obviously), but I think "factor in the cost of a professional assembly/adjustment on any website sale if you're not mechanically inclined" is terrific advice. I am admittedly the world's worst mechanic, so it's just a given I wouldn't want me doing the assembly/adjustments.
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Old 12-30-21, 08:26 AM
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I've bought two BD Motobecanes. Both are terrific bikes (aluminum road bike with Ultegra, carbon "cafe" bike with 105), and both required some tweaking a bit beyond Ikea furniture-level skills. Had I had to take to bike to a shop for the tweaking, I'd still have saved a couple of hundred bucks over a comparable bike.

That said, I was annoyed when I e-mailed BD to complain that one bike was missing its head tube decal and received the reply that "it was left off to save weight." I then directly e-mailed BD's owner rather than the smirking punk in his employ. He sent me two head tube decals.

Of course, people here have sometimes reported experiencing less-than-stellar treatment by local bike shop employees. A couple who post here who clearly mistake their own biases for objective facts. Ordering on line saves me from having to have tiresome conversations with people who know less than they think they do.

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Old 12-30-21, 08:35 AM
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The above is totally unsurprising and a great example of why new cyclists should never purchase from BD (or at least not without the help of an experienced cyclist):

1. The bikes are shipped as they would be to a shop, not as they would be shipped for retail from a direct sales company. They are shipped assuming there will be a somewhat skilled mechanic at the other end. They take a few minutes to assemble if you have some knowledge of bikes, but if you're new to bikes it could be a struggle.
2. BD doesn't lie about their specs as some people accuse them of doing, but they do spec to a price. You really need to read and understand the entire spec sheet before buying to understand exactly what you're going to get. Again, they don't lie so read carefully.
3. BD is a "drop ship" shop: the bikes are sent directly from the manufacturers and BD has nothing to do with that entire process. If you buy from BD, expect zero after-sales service and expect returns to be a total pain if not impossible. Know exactly what size you need and don't plan on calling them with questions, they will not help you.
4. BD frames are all stock catalog models from Taiwanese OEMs. They are generally good quality frames but they have no frills and they are generally several years behind the "state of the art". This may not matter to you, but don't expect to be getting a Tarmac SL7 competitor or whatever from them.

Only if you're OK with all of the above should you buy from BD. If you are OK with all of the above and choose the BD model carefully, you can get a solid deal.
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Old 12-30-21, 08:37 AM
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Purchased a used Schwinn Peloton off of ebay.
First thing I did was bring it boxed to my local LBS to inspect and fully assemble and tune it for me.
I would not trust my mechanical skills and for peace of mind it was worth it.

To me, I would just factor in assembly and tuning as a necessary expense.
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Old 12-30-21, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
I've bought two BD Motobecanes. Both are terrific bikes (aluminum road bike with Ultegra, carbon "cafe" bike with 105), and both required some tweaking a bit beyond Ikea furniture-level skills. Had I had to take to bike to a shop for the tweaking, I'd still have saved a couple of hundred bucks over a comparable bike.

That said, I was annoyed when I e-mailed BD to complain that one bike was missing its head tube decal and received the reply that "it was left off to save weight." I then directly e-mailed BD's owner rather than the smirking punk in his employ. He sent me two head tube decals.

Of course, people here have sometimes reported experiencing less-than-stellar treatment by local bike shop employees. A couple who post here who clearly mistake their own biases for objective facts. Ordering on line saves me from having to have tiresome conversations with people who know less than they think they do.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEhHEOIYgMY
Is the owner still a poster here?
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Old 12-30-21, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Germany_chris View Post
Is the owner still a poster here?
I believe that he stopped posting here over 5 years ago.
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Old 12-30-21, 10:10 AM
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I do all my own work and buy parts and tires on line , never a new bike. The only bikes I have bought without checking them out are vintage steel bikes that I assume need work. I bought my wife a new bike a year ago and went to the Trek shop here in Ventura , she is not a mechanic and I don't enjoy working on new bikes so I wanted the bike "ready to ride". They installed the bottle holder and mirror even a bell for her and we went riding right after the purchase. The guys there were great and made sure the bike was properly fitted.
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Old 12-30-21, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
The above is totally unsurprising and a great example of why new cyclists should never purchase from BD (or at least not without the help of an experienced cyclist):
.
Exactly what I was going to say.
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Old 12-30-21, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
...expecting over the phone instruction covering adjustments. In the past I had occasion of walking people through software without the luxury of remote connection. A simple tutorial turns into an hour-long ordeal ending with a frustrated user. I'm just a tech guy, give me a break...
Back in the the day I was having a hard time installing a "More-GO" magneto on my 65 Triumph Guppy. I was on the phone to Florida and the tech there kindly gave me the number of his cousin who lived where I was in San Antonio Tx. He came over, we had some beers and a good time working on it... Never did get it mounted though... Still... Much FUN and a good memory, thanks...
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Old 12-30-21, 01:56 PM
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I think people should expect any bike ordered online from anywhere to need some adjustments and factor that into their cost/value judgement.
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Old 12-30-21, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
The above is totally unsurprising and a great example of why new cyclists should never purchase from BD (or at least not without the help of an experienced cyclist):

1. The bikes are shipped as they would be to a shop, not as they would be shipped for retail from a direct sales company. They are shipped assuming there will be a somewhat skilled mechanic at the other end. They take a few minutes to assemble if you have some knowledge of bikes, but if you're new to bikes it could be a struggle.
2. BD doesn't lie about their specs as some people accuse them of doing, but they do spec to a price. You really need to read and understand the entire spec sheet before buying to understand exactly what you're going to get. Again, they don't lie so read carefully.
3. BD is a "drop ship" shop: the bikes are sent directly from the manufacturers and BD has nothing to do with that entire process. If you buy from BD, expect zero after-sales service and expect returns to be a total pain if not impossible. Know exactly what size you need and don't plan on calling them with questions, they will not help you.
4. BD frames are all stock catalog models from Taiwanese OEMs. They are generally good quality frames but they have no frills and they are generally several years behind the "state of the art". This may not matter to you, but don't expect to be getting a Tarmac SL7 competitor or whatever from them.

Only if you're OK with all of the above should you buy from BD. If you are OK with all of the above and choose the BD model carefully, you can get a solid deal.

This is really good info. I didn't know about the drop ship aspect. Essentially, then, BD is a website and not much else.

Since the OP made the comparison, any idea if buying from Diamondback would be much different? I just think there's an inherent limitation on how helpful any " remote" assembly assistance can be to someone who doesn't know bike maintenance, and am wondering if I'm wrong about that.
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Old 12-30-21, 06:56 PM
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Just created my account to try to find bike parts here and saw this thread. I know nothing of bikesdirect.com.

what I do find interesting is looking up their website name in the whois ICANN lookup tool. Highlight the first selection under "NameServer" right click and open link. cPanel web hosting.

That's interesting. *runs away.
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Old 12-30-21, 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Privolous View Post
Just created my account to try to find bike parts here and saw this thread. I know nothing of bikesdirect.com.

what I do find interesting is looking up their website name in the whois ICANN lookup tool. Highlight the first selection under "NameServer" right click and open link. cPanel web hosting.

That's interesting. *runs away.
For those of us who know nothing of such things, why is that interesting?
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Old 12-30-21, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
For those of us who know nothing of such things, why is that interesting?
try wikipedia, cPanel. It's crazier than it reads.

Looks like Oakley Capital is British.

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Old 12-30-21, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
what BD bike did you buy? You don't mention...
I donít think there was ever a BD purchase.

John
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Old 12-30-21, 08:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Privolous View Post
Just created my account to try to find bike parts here and saw this thread. I know nothing of bikesdirect.com.

what I do find interesting is looking up their website name in the whois ICANN lookup tool. Highlight the first selection under "NameServer" right click and open link. cPanel web hosting.

That's interesting. *runs away.
Originally Posted by Privolous View Post
try wikipedia, cPanel. It's crazier than it reads.
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