The Chainlink

I always encourage everyone to hop on a bicycle but what i don't encourage is going to bike shops that have attitude and over charge. I am a supporter of revitalizing the life of used bicycles. If you aren't interested or motivated to build or have one built for you, I completely understand. New bikes might be best for you. However there is no reason for any bike shops to be bike elitist snobs. In my experience, places like Kozy's embrace this image.
I love bikes but i know not everyone else who wants to ride is as enthusiastic as i am, and that is fine. We in the bike community need to be more welcoming and understanding to new comers. Every time i walk into a Kozy's there is an aura of snobbery. If you are new to biking and feel overwhelmed by bike jerks, just ride on.

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So, i picked up a flyer for this website in the 219. erie kozy's shop on sunday. i find it also interesting that the first post i encounter concerns my employer and their status as a northernly breeze. i work with bryan and his dog on occasions, as well as many other dogs which frequent the kozy shops - we've got some ankle biters too. Bryan is an enthusiastic proponent for the outdoors and the utilitarian uses of the bicycle. the dog, whose name escapes me, is a forever puppy; six years old and doesn't look a year, yet will follow you like everything is a whole new world.
I do feel that with all shops it is about the person and their mood. everyone can have a good or bad day, as with any profession. arrogance is usually a defense for unconfidence.
we are thinking about bikes, our bikes, other customers bikes, racks, gloves, locks, what my manager is harking at me about, and now trying to find a screw that fits a 1997 schwinn frontier. things can get overwhelming and it could take just one more straw. todays consumer is more educated and expects a lot more from the retailer while paying less. we are all guilty of wanting a lot, while knowing that when we are on the other end, it's not always so much fun trying to squeeze out every drop for the client. it's hard to maintain a Mayberry aesthetic these days.
as someone on the inside, our stores see a lot of people, and customers are more than often pleased. but there are a lot of things to understand. first, bad news travels faster. and a lot of times people don't take the effort to share a good experience, but by the nature of this thread, people are more empowered by distaste than delight.
second, the man behind kozy's has created a business based on statistics. we are in an urban commuter market, so that is what he is supplied to handle. and don't even think about instant customization. we can order anything for you. i know we don't have those cool new velocity rims that look like wood, but that is because they are mostly cool new velocity rims that look like wood and not necessarily rims that are going to go out the front door. but if you want them, we are more than happy to call our friends down under and get those rims asap for you. third, the majority of kozy employees are enthusiastic about bikes. we all have an abundance of knowledge, but we may not be as versed in the things you specifically want to know about. we are always learning and with an endless supply of new products, we are often learning with our customers. if you know what you are looking for when you go into a shop, let us know, and maybe we can tell you which guy knows most about the carbon road bike, or about packing for Ragbrai, or about the newest innovation in full suspension. we all have our favorite bikes and without a doubt we will know more about those than any bike on the floor.
those guys at 219 are all about the winter riding. you can see oliver cruising his fixie all over town. an amazing mechanic turning wrenches at all the kozy locations. willie the other "young mech" just finsihed building his own titanium trials frame, try and give this guy a problem, there is nothing he cannot fix. these guys have it rough sometimes. but all the kozy's stores have dedicated staff and some that ride to work everyday. there are even days these guys will ride to work and the mailman won't even show up.
I don't mean for this to be an ad for kozy, believe me... there are many other great shops out there some better, some worse. but no matter what shop you go to, instead of just spreading bad experiences, lets spread the good. let others know when a shop did something great for you, or who has a cool new product. in the end, the bike industry and community is held together by a lot more than a bunch of brand names, and that is a passion for two wheels and the ride.
so if you need anything, stop into your LBS and say hi, we'll keep you riding.
-see you in the bike lane.



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