The Chainlink

I just noticed this weekend that the storefront on Montrose is for rent. From what I can gather online, it sounds like they got fed up with break-ins. I'm very sad as this was only about a block and a half away from me! I know they still have the store in Wicker Park, but I'm not going to haul down there. Anyone have any other info/suggestions for bike shops in this area?

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Cracking me up daily. You are on a roll. 

h' 1.0 said:

What does everyone think of Turin on Damen?

Jon Londres is a really stellar mechanic; they have an interesting selection of bikes. Can't say as I have been in simply as a customer...I usually just stop in to say hi and see if any new stuff is there.

h' 1.0 said:

What does everyone think of Turin on Damen?


I'm unfamiliar with this shop.

Kevin C said:

"5600Bikes" is still registered to Robert Vaughters.

Adam, do you know of this "new" shop?

Pedal To The People said:

We will certainly be there for all your cycling needs!

Hey everyone!  Thought I would chime in here, just found out about this thread tonight.

There was a bunch of stuff going on at the Montrose store, most of which doesn't need be aired out, but moving solely to Wicker Park came down primarily to a few things:

1. Our lease was up on Montrose.  It came to decided to extend the lease or move.

2. In our 4.5 years in Albany Park we suffered through 8 break-ins.  The least painful of which cost us a few thousand dollars, the most painful cost is much, much more.

3. The Wicker Park store was/is doing quite well with it's space and my focus lead me there.

4. I have taken over the reigns at Embrocation Cycling Journal.

Albany Park was an awesome neighborhood to be a part of.  I have spent more waking hours there than anywhere else in the last 5 years and leaving the neighborhood was a tough decision not taken lightly.

We're still here, albeit doing something a littler different.  Iron Cycles morphed from a tiny shop to one much larger, though not because that's exactly what I wanted.  The new Wicker Park store is the type of store that I love.  Smaller, more intimate, focusing on just  a few customers at a time.  We had become a shop much like all of the others: trying to move as many bikes and finish as many tune-ups as possible, which is fine for plenty of other bike shops.  But, I didn't set out to be just another bike shop.

I'm proud of what we did in Albany Park but at the same time very excited for our new chapter in Wicker Park.

We do have a bunch of the stock left from Albany Park, so if you're looking for anything (tires, tubes, chains, cassettes, etc etc) let us know.  I pass through Albany Park nearly every day on my commute and can arrange for delivery if needed.

Thank you all for your support, hopefully you can make it down to see us in Wicker Park, and of course follow along with our new web stuff as well.

As always, feel free to reach out to me directly (brandon at ironcycles dot com) or stop in to see us (1375 N Milwaukee)

And as others have said, there are a few shops not too far away.  I strongly recommend Turin, and I've heard great things about Green Machine Cycles as well.

Thanks for the debriefing, Brandon, and better luck going forward.

ditto from DHB

h' 1.0 said:

Thanks for the debriefing, Brandon, and better luck going forward.

Very nice note to explain things, and very classy of Brandon to recommend other shops in the area.  That is typical of my experience with Iron Cycles, and one of the reasons I'm sorry they are not my neighborhood shop anymore.I might have to make a trip down to Wicker Park when I need tires though. :- )

Unfortunately, I've had two encounters recently that say something different.

The first came after striking up a conversation with a familiar looking guy at the bar. He told me that until recently he had worked at Iron Cycles, and that he, and the rest of the staff, were given 2 days notice prior to the Albany Park store closing and that they would all be loosing their jobs. I live right by there and at the time didn't even know that the store had closed. He was upset, and while he seemed honest, I originally thought it was just an angry exaggeration.

The second encounter came when I saw some people clearing out the Albany Park storefront while walking the dog. I went over and asked them what had happened and found out that one of the guys doing the cleaning was also the landlord. He told me almost the same exact story. He was given 2 days notice that they would be breaking their lease, it was not up, and closing the store. This guy was also upset and it did not seem that Iron Cycles left amicably.

I don't mean this to be hostile with this, I had been to the store and was always treated well, no one brought up the brake-ins and I don't doubt the Wicker Park store is doing great, but I thought it was important to share this.

There are always two sides to every story, but kinda a coincidence that you ran into an ex employee, the landlord, and joined the chainlink just in time to post this......

Running a bike shop is about the best way to get into debt, they are not making millions and small shops struggle to make their monthly "nut" . It is a loss to any neighborhood to lose a bike shop the quality of Iron Cycles. 

Shops like Turin, Get a Grip and Johnny Sprockets are within 2-3 miles, and his other shop is within 5 miles Life goes on

"...but I thought it was important to share this."

Ok, but why does this matter to anyone other than those directly affected by this?  You say YOU were "always treated well".  So really, why does your post really matter?


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