View Full Version : Negotiate w/ LBS?

04-09-2009, 01:56 AM
I'm in the market for a Surly LHT to replace my old, crusty mtn bike commuter. I have a couple of options for proceeding:

Buy frameset from LBS, port current components, slowly upgrade
Buy complete build from LBS, slowly upgrade
Buy complete upgraded build from LBS

Here are the items that I'd want replaced relatively soon from the complete build:

Saddle, replace w/ to-be-purchased Brooks
Tires, replace w/ current tires (a week old Conti Top Contacts)

There are a few factors in play, the primary one is that it will be easier to convince my wife of several smaller purchases spread out over months than $1100 + later upgrades or more for completely upgraded build.

I'm leaning toward option 1, knowing that, along w/ the frameset, I'll probably have to get a new front derailer and, possibly, headset. However, I'm open to getting the complete build if I can get a good deal. I know the LBS won't have much leeway on the bike itself, but I'll be getting accessories (full fenders, reflective tape, BB tool, bottle cage, maybe a Surly Nice Rack or Axiom Streamliner) and the aforementioned saddle.

Is it reasonable to ask the LBS to move on the overall price and/or give credit for unused saddle and tires?

04-09-2009, 08:36 AM
I went through this same decision last spring. I ended up buying the prebuilt bike, using it as is and upgrading things as needed. I would highly recomend this as most of the important components on the bike are really quite good. The only things that I have replaced is the tires (panaracer ribmo), seat (brooks b17) and front brake (tektro wide pull). Plus the addition of racks and fenders. I priced buying a frame and building it myself and it was going to be much more expensive to go that route than buying the full build. anywho, which ever way you go be sure to make the bike yours, don't lean to much on other people's opinions of what parts you should put on your bike. You will like the bike much more if your final decision is what you really want the bike to be. good luck

04-09-2009, 11:43 AM
In shops where I worked, we were always glad to swap out parts when selling a bike. If the buyer wanted to upgrade, say, a saddle, we would credit the buyer the wholesale cost of the saddle on the bike towards the upgrade. However, I never recall simply taking parts off a built bike and reducing the price accordingly. It just wouldn't make business sense. I'd be really surprised if the shops in PDX did any different.

04-09-2009, 12:05 PM
However, I never recall simply taking parts off a built bike and reducing the price accordingly.

I thought it might be a little iffy on the tires and wanted to gauge things first. I definitely do not want to walk in there and be a total dick. I want the shops to make money and pay their people a living wage, but also balance it with financial/marital bliss. :D

04-17-2009, 08:59 AM
I think we are all in this situation from time to time. IME it is better to buy right the first time and be done. You can't go anywhere near the price of the "complete" by building it yourself unless you are *very* eBay savvy or have a lot of other parts you are willing to move over. If you have the LBS do this, you're going to have to pay them for their time, which again probably isn't worth it. Have the LBS trade up for the saddle you want or craigslist the saddle it comes with and buy a Brooks elsewhere.

Don't want to pimp Universalcycles, but they have a coupon vip15 for 15% off if you buy over $300. That's $73, which is tough to beat for that saddle. Of course you'd have to buy the bike through them as well.