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  1. #1
    Gringo
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    Bikes Direct / Motobecane not Offensive

    Someone asked a few weeks ago what people are doing who are waiting for a preordered bike from BD. I didn't reply because I'm mostly a lurker. If I have value to add, MAYBE I'll speak. Sometimes I just like to jump onto the pile, but that's pretty rare, just like my posts.

    What I've been doing is watching Mike and his crusade for BD and his brands. Sometimes I'm a little embarassed, sometimes a little offended, but I'm generally glad he's active and I'm almost always entertained.

    The users of mtbr.com know the good and bad of the BikesDirect.com, it's easy to see. Sometimes Mike contradicts himself (please don't ask me to be specific, I'm not taking the time to research, but I'm certain I've seen it), sometimes cherry picks from other posts, but his party line is pretty consistent.

    What he sells is in black and white, and things like warranty and service concerns have already been called out, the world already knows member X had problems with Y.

    And I know that what he says about the bikes and the industry is true (again, don't ask me to prove it because I'm using this for the sake of debate).

    I appreciate Mike, and my posts shouldn't contradict that up to this point.

    What do the OWNERS here think? Are you offended? Or are you like me and see the value of him being acive in this site and supporting YOUR individual needs?

    Keep it up, Mike, but pace yourself!

    G.

  2. #2
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    Gringo,

    I own two MBs, both were used, so take that into account if needed. I like that Mike/BD participates on the forum. I think it is a two way street; he gets to push his product and see the customer feedback, and customers can voice issues that may get more prompt attention when placed in the public forum.

    I agree with some of the MB haters that he often uses threads to push his product... maybe more than he should. In the end, this is a issue that the moderators should handle. The fact they ignore it indicates to me the are OK with it... and that is fine with me. I can ignore it just the same... He is a sponsor and we assume all sponsors will be treated the same if they choose to support the forum.

    This arrangement does put Mike in a vulnerable position. He has to be very careful that what he does for Bob, he does for Joe. If not, someone will find it and use it against him. That is unfortunately part of it. There are the numerous complaints about bike weight that I wish he would come clean on. We all know there is variation, so weigh several and provide a "not to exceed". We know that manufacturer X only weighs with x,y, and z... so state how you weighed it and let it be. For some, this is an important part of the equation and most manufacturers state a weight. It gets old seeing the avoidance played out in the forum.

    My $0.02

  3. #3
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    I like the fact that Bikes Direct has a presence here. It had an influence when I was deciding which bike to buy. The fact that they are here in the open was probably more important to me than the specifics of what they have to say.

    Feedback from other customers also had a pretty big impact, and I knew what to expect when I put my money down.

    Having a presence on an open forum means that BD understands that every customer interaction they have runs a chance of finding it's way to lots of potential customers. That's some strong incentive to treat people fairly.

    Contrast that with most manufacturers, where there are layers (store employee, store owner, regional brand rep, and so on) between you and the manufacturer. You have to hope and pray that someone steps up to help you somewhere along the way. Each person can blame the one above (or below) them. Someone is paying for all those layers too.

    It's just a different business model. I wouldn't say that the BD model is right for every bike buyer, but I'm glad customers have a choice.

  4. #4
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    I like the fact that Mike posts on here. It is nice to be able to post on here and actually get answers from him. I mean if you were having problems or questions about a Trek it isn't very likely that someone from Trek is going to come on here and post.

    My only problem is that he is misleading about warranty coverage. He makes it sound like Bikesdirect goes way above and beyond what most bike stores and companies do. But that just simply isn't true. Maybe he goes above and beyond their written policies, but most bike stores and companies go to great lengths to satisfy the customer. I have heard of Trek replacing 10 year old frames with brand new top of the line frames no questions asked. Somehow I don't see Bikesdirect doing that. The fact that you have to ship your entire bike to them for inspection in and of itself is ridiculous. For what is costs to ship and insure your bike you are getting close to the price of just buying a new frame in a lot of cases. I understand they have no dealers in most areas that can inspect the frame, but who wants to be without their entire bike for a few months? I love my Moto, but I really hope my frame never breaks. I can fix just about anything except a cracked frame!
    2012 On One Whippet 650b
    2012 Santa Cruz TRc 650b
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    1987 Haro RS1

  5. #5
    Frt Range, CO
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    The more I read Mike's posts, the more I'm loving BD. It's rare the owner will subject himself to some of the boobs that hang out here. Accusations of ghost accounts, paid shills, it never stops.

    I am never offended or embarassed by Mike, instead, I'm proud my country allows guys like Mike use their energy to build a business that I benefit from. I travel to France and Italy on business 3-4 time per year, my Euro buds can't imagine how a guy like Mike can be allowed to circumvent the traditional retail channels. In the EU business is regulated to prevent consumers from being able to buy from businesses like BD. The govenment claims it's for the "good of the people", in reality it's because retail businesses are protected lobbyies. In the end, hard working European citizens pay for their govenment's rackets.

    For what is costs to ship and insure your bike you are getting close to the price of just buying a new frame in a lot of cases. I understand they have no dealers in most areas that can inspect the frame, but who wants to be without their entire bike for a few months? I love my Moto, but I really hope my frame never breaks. I can fix just about anything except a cracked frame!
    Isn't that the point? I can buy the entire frame for $120, who needs to spend an extra 40% for a warrenty that allows me to drop it off at a shop and wait 1-2 weeks? In the unlikely event that a Moto frame breaks, BikeIsland can ship a Moto frame to my house in 5 business days. I can swap the parts over in a few beers err hours, I'm still way ahead

  6. #6
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    Mike is my hero!

    But seriously, I wish he would do to the auto industry what he has done for the bicycle industry. I am very happy with my purchase from Bikesdirect and Mike was there when I had questions.

    Wouldn't it be cool if we could buy an FJ40 direct from Toyota on the web from a retailer like autosdirect.com for $15,000 instead of $30,000?

  7. #7
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    Have the pre-ordered 09s ship yet? I know Mike stated that he was trying to get them out before the stated date of the 15th. I can't wait for my Fly pro even if some folks bash these Moto bikes. For me, I was able to buy two new bikes. One a FS and then the HT Fly. This is going to be fun.

  8. #8
    Gringo
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    My current favorite thread is now closed (Moto... Bad Rap), and the Admin got the last word in by calling out an inacuracy. I suspect it will start again when bikes start shipping.

    I subscribe to other non-related forums that have been completely corrupted by third party companies. With respect to wristwatch forums, the mods are now well paid protectors of corporate interest. At least I don't think I see that here.

    G.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by pursuiter
    I travel to France and Italy on business 3-4 time per year, my Euro buds can't imagine how a guy like Mike can be allowed to circumvent the traditional retail channels. In the EU business is regulated to prevent consumers from being able to buy from businesses like BD. In the EU business is regulated to prevent consumers from being able to buy from businesses like BD. The govenment claims it's for the "good of the people", in reality it's because retail businesses are protected lobbyies. In the end, hard working European citizens pay for their govenment's rackets.
    I'll play. I live in the EU now, came from the EU, and lived in the US most of my life (let's say 98%).

    What you are saying it utter ********. Even in the US, one can go to the local Borders, open one of those expensive UK bike mags, go through the back, and then see one of DOZENS of companies doing this exact same thing. BD is not unique, because other companies around the world are doing this. Hell, I can even go to a bike shop in Germany and find these types of brands as well and the pricing is on par.

    Simply put, your friends don't know where to find these deals. Many find BD in magazines. They should pick up magazines as well from France or the UK or Germany and see how many brands there are like this throughout the EU.

    As far as your assessment of how things work and businesses are regulated in the EU, perhaps you should provide proof, as there again, are many direct to consumer sales. This is a perfect example of why Americans are considered so ignorant and why we have to put up with these types of stereotypes when we travel.

    Again, there are dozens of these types of companies in the EU, exact same idea, pricing is spot on, and that's it.

    My medical insurance costs next to nothing. My food expenses are way lower. Hell, it's a joke that we pay $1.50+ for bottled water in the US, when I can get a 1.5L bottle of mineral water for .19Ä cents. Education is mostly covered. That's a real racket in the US, along with the loan companies and support businesses around higher education in the US.

    The US government talks about decreasing oil reliance, well how about investing in mass transit in areas other than only metropolitan areas?

    The list goes on and on, but I won't bore you with the facts of the situation coming from an American that's spent most of his life in the US, and now is able to objectively compare things between the two. If you're talking bureacracy and corruption, and inefficiency, and lobbying, you're talking the US, not that we're all without our problems here

    The point is, BD is not unique, as you claim it to be. I won't get into the other stuff, but I will set the record straight.

  10. #10
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    Yeah, he does come off as being too much of a salesman and it is a bit embarassing but most salesmen are just that way. He may have other usernames and "assistants" but if enough people from other forums pay attention, he will eventually get snagged. He is fortunate that most here have little interest in Motobecane or Bikes Direct.

  11. #11
    Nightriding rules SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken

    Simply put, your friends don't know where to find these deals. Many find BD in magazines. They should pick up magazines as well from France or the UK or Germany and see how many brands there are like this throughout the EU.
    .
    ditto...there are lots of bike brands here in Germany that use similar business models as BD....

  12. #12
    Gringo
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    OP is about Mike and BD, NOTHING ELSE.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    I'll play. I live in the EU now, came from the EU, and lived in the US most of my life (let's say 98%).... I won't get into the other stuff, but I will set the record straight.
    Ignore this guy's rant and my response, It does not address the OP at all.

    Readers: JC is also 90% wrong by my standards and likely comparing apples to oranges. I live in Germany, my current resident status is German and I live in Munich. I do business in natural resources across the world. Almost everything here costs more, insulted further by the exchange rate, and those 'free' things he mentioned are paid for by oppressive taxes and inefficient bureaucracy. Thatís another debate for another post.

    Readers: There are lots of businesses that follow BD direct to consumer here in the EU, but all I've seen are more expensive by a long shot, though mail-order parts sell closer to after exchange US prices. EBayís is one of the most efficient markets, compare bike sale prices between ebay.de to ebay.com. I'll start another post in a more appropriate forum to explore these ideas in 10 minutes.

    JC, I like many of your posts in mtbr.com, but this diatribe is unsolicited, debatable, and not related to the OP.

    JC, you're thick skinned, don't take offense, but the purchasing power parody is not being questioned here.

    JC: I'm about to change my avatar because I'm almost healed, and I hope we can share a few days of trail riding in the Alps this fall. PM me with where you are and maybe we can get together. I'm flying to Portland on Saturday, but don't know if I'm fit enough to do much over there, but have $$$ of stuff waiting at REI. Let me know if I can bring anything back for you.

    JC: If you insist on a continued debate, let's carry on off-line. Take the last word if you want it. Send me your handy and we can probably trade stories for days. Oktoberfest starts in three weeks, what other excuse does one need?

    G.

  13. #13
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    Gringo, sorry to make you cry.

    Gringo, there are many levels to where and how things cost more or less.

    Gringo, I invite you to live in the US for some time, and at the end of two years, see how much you bring home, and see how much buying power you really have.

    Gringo, I don't care if you like my posts or not. You're obviously upset because persuiter brought it into a direction with a claim that wasn't true.

    Gringo, go off on pursuiter for taking it away from your point.

    Gringo, you won't because he's a Moto fan.

    Gringo, enjoy the Alps.

  14. #14
    Frt Range, CO
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    Gringo, sorry to make you cry.

    Gringo, there are many levels to where and how things cost more or less.

    Gringo, I invite you to live in the US for some time, and at the end of two years, see how much you bring home, and see how much buying power you really have.

    Gringo, I don't care if you like my posts or not. You're obviously upset because persuiter brought it into a direction with a claim that wasn't true.

    Gringo, go off on pursuiter for taking it away from your point.

    Gringo, you won't because he's a Moto fan.

    Gringo, enjoy the Alps.
    you are such an ass, why don't you go crawl back under your rock

  15. #15
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    Shush, I have some important things to do on the other side of the forums.

  16. #16
    Gringo
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    Back to the OP...

    For people who really ride their bikes, not trying too hard to be the World Police of mtbr.com.

    What does everybody else think about Mike and MB's presence on mtbr.com?

    G.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gringo
    Back to the OP...

    For people who really ride their bikes, not trying too hard to be the World Police of mtbr.com.

    What does everybody else think about Mike and MB's presence on mtbr.com?

    G.
    I told him in another thread. I would have considered a Ti for my gf, but he really creeped me out.

  18. #18
    Frt Range, CO
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    We get it, you don't like our bikes, we're chumps and shills, you know everything there is to know. JC, you should learn to make your point and then walk away. Letting other have the last word is a sign of a well mannered person.

  19. #19
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    I did make my point. Hell, that other thread went on ten pages after I bowed out.

    Why does BD need you, sugar?

  20. #20
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    JERK chicken:

    We get it - that you don't like Bikes Direct, and that you think that people who buy from Bikes Direct are stupid.

    You are absolutely, unequivocally, indisputably correct.

    We should all be punished.

    You win!

    You are the best!!

    You reign supreme above all of us!!!

    Now, please, kindly go away, and let us wallow in our pathetic misery.

    * * *

    To the point of thread, as a soon-to-be owner, I'm actually pleased that Mike maintains a presence on these web BB's.

    As mentioned by another poster(s), it actually creates accountability for him.

    Some folks raised the "customer is always right" point that Mike, by refuting some customers' experiences, was failing to be accommodating or honorable, and being even critical of those customers.

    But from the anecdotes I read, sometimes including both sides of the story (especially the ones where the customers clearly ran over their bikes or got run over - that's user negligence), I'd say that Mike was 100% reasonable in his position.

    No one's in business to lose money, and over Two-G's of mine recently went to BD because of my belief that Mike believes this also and operates his business accordingly, which means not that he's out there screwing customers, but that he's doing what's fair and reasonable on a case-by-case business.

    As a matter of fact, the anecdotes about customer dissatisfaction I've read from the point of view of the posters give me the impression that these customers are the ones looking to pull something over the rest of us.
    Last edited by Bends But Doesn't Break; 09-03-2008 at 08:27 PM.

  21. #21
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    Wait, what? I wasn't one of the people in that other thread saying anything about BD's business and flaming customers.. I actually wanted mike to speak and tell us more about the business. It just so happened he said some things there I didn't like, and I pointed it out. I didn't go and attack owners for being stupid.

    Something screwy with your reading comprehension?

  22. #22
    Frt Range, CO
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    Quote Originally Posted by pursuiter
    Letting other have the last word is a sign of a well mannered person.
    JC, could you shut the fock up and go away?

  23. #23
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    WHy is it you can't handle any BD thread?

    You're just going to lead to yet another BD thread getting closed, and this in itself will raise warning flags for potential BD customers.

    How about you show your great manners and let others have the last word. I will only post as long as I am addressed here.

  24. #24
    Frt Range, CO
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    So that's a no, you're going to continue inflicting yourself on us no matter how un-welcome you are?

  25. #25
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    The forum is open to all, and my constructive (which you are acting contrary to) thoughts were posted early in the clusterf*ck, and then I bowed out and watched the cannibalization follow, which you were an active participant in. I didn't like what I saw on your end, the other side, nor BD's side, so I watched. It didn't become a matter of credibility, as shots like you're making here buried the credible and constructive posts and made BD's posts look even more odd and isolated.

    So yes.

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