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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well I spent a good deal of time in the "sand box" and got permission from the lovely "Mrs. The Spyder" to go ahead and buy a new bike. The local bike shops were just a let down so I decided to buy a nice Merckyx AXM from Competitive cyclist. Spoke to these guys twice about what I wanted on the bike. Got an e-mail after I purchased the bike to only find out that the Record setup I wanted was not complete (they had seveal chorus parts in there). Called em again and reiterated to them what I wanted and specifically told them not to forget the ergobrain computer, chris king head set (red color) and Continental GP 4000 red tires.
Bike comes and what does it not have, no ergobrain computer, no chris king headset and Michelin red tires (BTW I despise michelin). So I called em again, and they said that the ergobrain was their fault and they would sent out the complete set up and would even pay for installation. The AXM does not allow for the Chris King head set, and I asked him why I wasn't told this before, and a long period of silence ensues. The michelin tires are not their goof so I am told that I have to live with this.
3 days after this phone call a package arrives from them and I think well this should be the computer, wire harness and mounting bracket. NOPE, just the freakin computer......
So I call em again, and wonder is anyone awake overthere and do they pay attention to their customers????? So now I get to talk to the head honcho on Monday, and I have every intention on sending this bike back. I see no reason in rewarding incompetence, especially after the money I have spent with them. So beware of these guys and avoid their web site at your peril. I certainly will never buy anything from them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:(
 

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Hmmmm... That's a shame. Granted their prices are on the high side but I've never recieved anything less than excellent service on the occassions I've done purchases with them.

That's a sweet frame but I have to say I find it kind of surprising that someone who would buy such a high performance top $$$$$ ride wouldn't know that a Chris King hs doesn't work with that frame or any Merckx frame that they sell. It's matter of fact the only frames that Competitive Cyclist sells which can use a CK hs are those by Colnago and Pegoretti.

Well anyway, good luck.
 

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That's a sweet frame but I have to say I find it kind of surprising that someone who would buy such a high performance top $$$$$ ride wouldn't know that a Chris King hs doesn't work with that frame or any Merckx frame that they sell.
I have to agree, in part. While it sucks that they got things wrong on the computer and tires, if you want someone to help you out with the component spec, buying online is probably the wrong way to go. If I were especially particular about things and wasn't 100% sure what was/wasn't compatible, I'd go with my LBS. Since so many bikes have integrated headsets nowadays, if I were absolutely in love with the Chris King headset, I'd really do my homework to make sure I got a compatible frame.

It sort of reminds me of NewEgg's slogan, "When you know, you NewEgg." They're not going to help you with jack-squat, but if you know exactly what you want and need zero customer service, they'll give you a good price. Sorry you had a bad experience, though -- no one likes that -- but I think your expectations for an online retailer were a bit off.

Cheers,
Ari
 

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ari said:
I have to agree, in part. While it sucks that they got things wrong on the computer and tires, if you want someone to help you out with the component spec, buying online is probably the wrong way to go. If I were especially particular about things and wasn't 100% sure what was/wasn't compatible, I'd go with my LBS. Since so many bikes have integrated headsets nowadays, if I were absolutely in love with the Chris King headset, I'd really do my homework to make sure I got a compatible frame.

It sort of reminds me of NewEgg's slogan, "When you know, you NewEgg." They're not going to help you with jack-squat, but if you know exactly what you want and need zero customer service, they'll give you a good price. Sorry you had a bad experience, though -- no one likes that -- but I think your expectations for an online retailer were a bit off.

Cheers,
Ari
I've had quite the opposite experience with Wrench Science. They walk you through every component and I would rest assured that If a frame had an integrated headset, they would say as much. I know that Brandon at Competitive has some very flowery and informative writing, but the guys at Wrench Science actually RIDE bikes (as witnessed on Wednesday eve rides from their shop) Tim isactually pretty fast and Marco used to be a pro in Europe... Freddy Rodriguez even shows up on occassion in the off season.
They know their bikes and are not snotty about it.


Hey The Spider:

Didn't Competitive send a confirmation email after you ordered/ before you received your bike with the parts spec?
 

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I'm not sure this really qualifies as bad service. I've bought from Brendan at Competitive Cyclist twice now. I am not sure how you managed to spec. a King headset because the web site usually doesn't allow you to spec. incompatable parts and it probably says that the frame uses an integrated headset in the description. Okay, they screwed up on the computer but it sounds like they are doing everything to make it right.
You are the one who screwed up on the tires, so your bad on that one. I hate to sound like a dick but they are even paying to have a computer installed, perhaps if your skill level is at the point where you need to have a computer installed then perhaps buying a bike on-line was not the wisest idea.
 

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idris icabod said:
I'm not sure this really qualifies as bad service. I've bought from Brendan at Competitive Cyclist twice now. I am not sure how you managed to spec. a King headset because the web site usually doesn't allow you to spec. incompatable parts and it probably says that the frame uses an integrated headset in the description. Okay, they screwed up on the computer but it sounds like they are doing everything to make it right.
You are the one who screwed up on the tires, so your bad on that one. I hate to sound like a dick but they are even paying to have a computer installed, perhaps if your skill level is at the point where you need to have a computer installed then perhaps buying a bike on-line was not the wisest idea.
So, I just had to check it out... You're correct, the online bike builder did not allow me to choose a king headset for the 3XM. It did however, allow me to choose an FSA bottom Bracket with a Record crank and a Dura Ace cassette. Compatible? I think not. Perhaps he placed the order over the phone with someone who didn't know what they were doing.

I'm not sure how you came to the conclusion that The Spyder screwed up the tires. He asked for red Conti GP 4000 tires... In what part of that did he mention Michelin? GP4K's come in red, don't they? Furthermore, if someone purchases a bike and adds a computer as an accessory, which bike shop is not going to install the computer for the customer? Judging by your comment, you have never installed or attempted to install an ErgoBrain. It's no walk in the park. I'd pay to have a pro install it any day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
retort to some comments

I did specify to them what I wanted both on line and by phone. I actually had a list in front of me what I wanted and did receive a confirmational email from CC. It was after the first confirmational email that we started running into problems. I also understand that I could have a deficit in knowledge base, BUT when you pay as much for a bike as I just did, CC CAN MAKE THE EFFORT TO GET IT RIGHt. This ladies and gentlemen is just plain old customer service. The problem here is a lack of attention to detail. While the person on the phone may not be packing the order, someone should be checking it before it goes out to ensure it's correct!!!!!!
If you walked into a LBS and ordered a Pinarello dogma in color green and wanted HED wheels, and the LBS presented u with a brown cannondale, with mavic wheels, you would be upset. So after spending the money and time that I did, believe me, they screwed up plan and simple!
 

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ari said:
It sort of reminds me of NewEgg's slogan, "When you know, you NewEgg." They're not going to help you with jack-squat, but if you know exactly what you want and need zero customer service, they'll give you a good price. Sorry you had a bad experience, though -- no one likes that -- but I think your expectations for an online retailer were a bit off.

Cheers,
Ari
the thing is, Competitive Cyclist charges practically retail, kind of like Wrench Science. they should provide a lot more service than a discount online bike store. and, normally they do. sounds like CC goofed here, though.

OP, you haven't explained why the tires are their fault. btw, I prefer Michelins to Contis, but from what you say, you asked for Contis and got Michelins, and were told that it wasn't their fault. there's no compatibility issues with tires - a 700c tire is a 700c tire. from what we have, it sounds pretty clear that the tires too were their fault.
 

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Stop your whining. If you can afford that bike, you can afford new tires. No one would return an $8000 bike because the $50 tires were the wrong brand. It doesn't add up.
 

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marimba_artist said:
Stop your whining. If you can afford that bike, you can afford new tires. No one would return an $8000 bike because the $50 tires were the wrong brand. It doesn't add up.
I think you missed the point there buddy.

I've got $5 says he rides the bike, loves it, and doesn't return it.
 

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the spyder said:
I did specify to them what I wanted both on line and by phone. I actually had a list in front of me what I wanted and did receive a confirmational email from CC. It was after the first confirmational email that we started running into problems. I also understand that I could have a deficit in knowledge base, BUT when you pay as much for a bike as I just did, CC CAN MAKE THE EFFORT TO GET IT RIGHt. This ladies and gentlemen is just plain old customer service. The problem here is a lack of attention to detail. While the person on the phone may not be packing the order, someone should be checking it before it goes out to ensure it's correct!!!!!!
If you walked into a LBS and ordered a Pinarello dogma in color green and wanted HED wheels, and the LBS presented u with a brown cannondale, with mavic wheels, you would be upset. So after spending the money and time that I did, believe me, they screwed up plan and simple!
Doesn't really matter what you know or don't know... It matters that the person selling you the bike knows what will work and tell you what won't work plain and simple.

I'm done.... let us know how it all works out.
 

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velocipede said:
I think you missed the point there buddy.

I've got $5 says he rides the bike, loves it, and doesn't return it.
Well, he actually says

"So now I get to talk to the head honcho on Monday, and I have every intention on sending this bike back"

Like I said, no one would return this bike because the tires are the wrong brand. Buyer's remorse anyone??
 

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Omg.....

marimba_artist said:
Well, he actually says

"So now I get to talk to the head honcho on Monday, and I have every intention on sending this bike back"

Like I said, no one would return this bike because the tires are the wrong brand. Buyer's remorse anyone??
Read the post again. there was more than a tire problem. And also I would send the bike back because of their customer service. OP, let us know how you resolve this issue.
 

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Competitive Cyclist tactics (ery long)v

I bought my Fondriest in-person at their store in Little Rock,AR (known locally as Bikeseller.com and when they used to carry Fondriest). I dealt with Brendan and the rest of the guys and I personally have not had a problem in dealing with them. They are nice guys but I have seen this pattern of service with them. They will often "overlook" somethings, which in their view is "minor". For instance, my buddy bought a "blemished" DeRosa Merak from them just a few weeks after I bought my bike. He was told that it was a very minor scrape under the BB. When the bike arrived into the shop, they built it up and had it ready for him to take. Of course they guaranteed his satisfation and said that if he wasn't happy with the blemish, he could opt for a different bike at the regular price. After it was all built up, they called him and said his bike was ready. My buddy went in and checked out the blemish and it turned out that it was more than what they said it would be "a scrape". The blemsih was a one inch scrape with a pretty fair sized dimple where the aluminum was creased. He was not too happy about it but felt that since the bike was already built up, and it wasn't a structural issue, he would just take the bike. After all it was still a "new" bike. The fair and best customer service tact would have been to call my buddy in as soon as the frame arrived and have him inspect it to see if he was satisfied with the severity of the blemish but they didn't.

Another example I have read about here happened to a guy (Elviento) that bought a Colnago Mix from CompCyclist. I believe he ordered a black color option and was told it was a 2005 frame. When it arrived it was the wrong color and it turned out to be a new 2004 frame. CC "acknowledged" that it was their mistake and that he could send it back for a refund. OBTW, they don't have the color that they promised him in stock but if he still wanted to keep the bike, they would knock off $100. What CC counts on their customers to do is accept the $$ break that they offer for these "minor" mistakes. More often than not, the unsatisfied customer doesn't return the item.

I have read a couple other stories like these but can't recall the specifics so I won't go on about them. Besides, this post is already a long-winded one anyways. Like I've said, Brendan and the others are nice guys but as more instances like these occur, it makes me a bit suspicious about their tactics and if I were to ever buy something from them, I would make damn sure that I spoke specifically with Brendan to get the order right. I would talk to them about a dozen times on it! Ride ON!!!
 

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I have not seen internet prices on any items at CC. If you want to know the normal mark-up
price for anything, just check their site. They have said more than once to me, they offer
value in their opinions and service. I realize they are just a me-too place to shop.
I have found better deals elsewhere. They do have a good web site and offer a visual close-up
inspection of alot of items.
My bike (un-assembled) came from them with a Campy Record crank that came packaged.
Upon visual inspect I could tell the crank was previously installed on another bike's BB spindle. I will never order another big ticket item from them again.

In general, just do all the study/prep work you can to minimze errors and disappointment. I am not judging the original poster, they (CC) are not perfect.
 

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Nice bike

If the bike came in perfect condition, (ie, well packed, no blemishes) I wouldn't send it back because of tires or the fact that I had to make 2 calls to get the computer right.

Dam that's a HOT BIKE.
 

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Had one transaction with Competitive, Carnac shoes, Assos bibs, and a Pear coat. Order came fast and in perfect shape. Was very pleased.. sorry to see you had problems Spyder.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
While I thought I would share my experience with the folks here, and hope in return to see if this is a consistent pattern with competitive cyclist. Some of the posters obviously did not completely read my post. I have sent merchandise back to a store after buying when it was not right, and I will continue to do that policy. Consumers do have rights, and when we pay for merchandise we have the right for the order to be correct. If it isn't correct then it needs to be brought to the retailers attention. This is certainly one way to do it, but it is not the only way. I do not have "buyers remorse" about the bike, it rides beautifully. But if it is not right, then again it needs to be brought to the attention of the retailer. Do not read any more into what I have written, that what was posted. I firmly beleive that if Miramba Artist spent this money on a ride and it was not right, that poster would do what they thought was necessary to make it right. But if he or she is willing to settle for whatever the retailer is going to give them unquestioningly, then some introspection needs to be done IMHO.
Your friendly neighborhood spyderman
 

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the spyder said:
While I thought I would share my experience with the folks here, and hope in return to see if this is a consistent pattern with competitive cyclist. Some of the posters obviously did not completely read my post. I have sent merchandise back to a store after buying when it was not right, and I will continue to do that policy. Consumers do have rights, and when we pay for merchandise we have the right for the order to be correct. If it isn't correct then it needs to be brought to the retailers attention. This is certainly one way to do it, but it is not the only way. I do not have "buyers remorse" about the bike, it rides beautifully. But if it is not right, then again it needs to be brought to the attention of the retailer. Do not read any more into what I have written, that what was posted. I firmly beleive that if Miramba Artist spent this money on a ride and it was not right, that poster would do what they thought was necessary to make it right. But if he or she is willing to settle for whatever the retailer is going to give them unquestioningly, then some introspection needs to be done IMHO.
Your friendly neighborhood spyderman
Tires are a temperary thing, a few months you're onto the next pair - if you are lucky to get a few months out of them. I go through 3 to 4 sets per season. The headset issue seems sort of silly, as I would choose the frame for the frame's sake and not because of it's ability to take a Chris King headset. Maybe the guy who sold it to him wasn't thinking it through, and the guy building the bike didn't think that there was a need to call the customer (he wouldn't know it was a specificied build request - that wasn't possible) so he built it the way it NEEDED to be built.
The computer they screwed up on, but are planning to fix it.
I don't see the need to have a hard line policy on this one. But that's just me.
 
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