Throwing it open to the readers: what are the better bike shops and why in Boston?
I just got a small gig that involves categorizing, detailing and reviewing Boston bike shops. Certainly, I’ve got some opinions, but hell, I’ve only got to two bikes, so I’m I could use a crib sheet of public opinion on the shops in (or close to) town.
Is Harris the best bet overall and worth the trip? How do you get back if you leave your bike out there?
ATA: Is this the best place to drop $8000 on a bike?
Boston Bicycle: If you need a fixie they seem to have them, but I’d hardly trust Cambridge, their sister shop, to deal with my bike lately. Others seem to like them…
Back Bay still in a basement for a reason?
Wheelworks: I’ve had nothing but rudeness here, anyone got anything positive to say about these guys?
It looked like you might get a decent low-rider at Adi’s in West Roxbury…is this true, where else do you get a trick bike?
Is there really a Campy shop in town?
Who has the hottest repair person, the best selection, the worst attitude?
Feeback is helpful. My deadline is next week and there’s no way I’m going to revisit every shop in town this week.
ATA: I bought my Fondriest there, but I don’t think I’d go back. They were pretty good during the sale, but they don’t stand behind their product or work. They stock the non-mass market brands (Fondriest, Willier, Colnago, &c). Definitely a racer’s shop. Others have had a different experience, so YMMV. They also have the highest prices in the world for parts and accessories.
Back Bay: Really, really pushy. Aggressive in the extreme. They used to be on Newbury, but got priced out on the rent and moved to Comm Ave a couple years ago. Typically mark stuff 150-200% over MSRP. (I mean, $2.00 for a cable stop!?!?!)
Wheelworks: Aloof at best. Hard to get waited on.
Cambridge Bicycle: Only been there once, but got waited on easily and he was helpful. Cute too.
Community Bicycle Supply: by far my favorite shop. Family owned and run since the 70s. Very, very friendly. Good prices. The only real down side is their selection of bikes isn’t all that great. Primarily Specialized, with a few others like Bianchis and the like.
My second favorite is Broadway Bike School. Very, very helpful and friendly. The don’t really have a lot of bikes, it’s mostly a repair shop, but they do have ANT Bikes and some others, plus used bikes.
You read my experience with Revolution
Harris is good, and they can find *anything* you need, but it is far away. There is no way back. There might be a bus during rush hour or something. Good BBQ next door!
International: You just can’t trust them. Keep your hand on your wallet while you’re there, and sign nothing.
REI: Great, but they only sell their own Novara brand of bikes and don’t do much in the way of repair. Great place for clothes and parts, though. Very helpful and stand behind their stuff.
I’ve had some experience with some other shops that have been working on rides and things, but havne’t been to their stores.