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  1. #1
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    Santa Cruz LBS has no bikes to try?

    My LBS in the UK is a Santa Cruz dealer but has no bikes in stock to try. They just order them in once you have paid a deposit on your bike. I'm thinking, how can I spend £2000 ($4000) without at least being able to sit on one to try the fit? When I look at the height chart for the Heckler I'm between sizes. The guy in the shop is really helpful and recommends a size but this doesn't mean much to me without a real world fit. I'd really like a Heckler but will probably have to pass this up as I am reluctant to buy a bike without trying it for size. Looking at the Heckler geometry, it seems a smallish fit in the cockpit.

    Going to this dealer is like doing mail order. A big disappointment after gearing up for a 07 Heckler!

    Should dealers not at least have some demo models?

  2. #2
    No e-drama please!!
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    Go with a medium Heckler for jumping & DH.I'm 6'2" & it worked great for me..Probably would go for a large next time though for better XC mobility ! ..
    DEMO8
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  3. #3
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    Where do you live? I know Leisure Lakes used to have a couple of bikes on demo as I test rode my Nomad there before buying.

    I wouldn't worry about the disappointment, you're in for a loooooong wait if you order an 07 Heckler now. (Unless you luck out and they have one in stock, unlikely though, most people are still being quote 6 week delivery).

  4. #4
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    I demoed the Heckler at Llandegla. At 5"7 the medium was great for me but it wasn't the new 07 frame (which I'm in the queue for one since April

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by andymach23
    Should dealers not at least have some demo models?
    This is not a SC problem this is your dealers issue. Sounds like they are a SC "seller" and not so much a dealer.

  6. #6
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead!

    That's interesting about the 'seller' rather than 'dealer' comment. It seems to contradict the fact that this is a premium product that you have to nearly guess that the bike will be a correct fit. How difficult is it to have 1 medium in stock. This would cover 2 sizes as if medium is too big, get small, or if too small get large. A bit vague, but way better than having no bikes and the sales guy telling you that you are definitely for a small size, even though the SC size chart puts me also within the lower band for a medium.

    In all the posts I read on MTBR about bike selection, people say get the bike that feels right for you after a test ride which even includes riding different sizes on the trail. In this months MBUK magazine the Chameleon is tested and it is mentioned that you will need to go up a size for trail riding, which shows further that choosing a bike size has more to it than a sales guy looking at you in the shop and saying yes you are definitely a size.

    I would like to order a new Heckler but fell really uncomfortable ordering an expensive bike based on basically a hunch that it will fit me. It's just like doing a mail order!

  7. #7
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    Just ask for a demo.

    Jungle do have demo bikes avallible in the uk ask your lbs to find out which one's they have and when they will be able to get it for you, i know they had a blur 4x a nomad and othere blurs for trial it should only cost you the carridge cost and most lbs will refund that if you purchase a bike from them the only problem will be the waiting time for a tri out good luck with this bat .

  8. #8
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    Unfortunetly, I work at a shop where we are more of a santa cruz 'seller' than 'dealer' and have only 3 models on the floor. No, you wouldnt be able to test ride one. Maybe telling you the reasons we might be seen more as a 'seller' will help -

    1. We live in an area where people try to barter down 310 dollar bikes, even though we offer lifetime tuneups on them (Hell, i had one guy that said he transfered exactly 390$ into his account to buy a trek hardtail, and he thought the price tag included tax... He was an idiot, so he tried to have us knock off the tax and stalled for 15 minutes after realizing we wouldn't go down, he bought it...). Point? People are cheap.

    2. We live in an area where you have to drive AT LEAST 40 minutes to hit some good singletrack (moderate trails). What does that produce? Not too many racers (not epics, blur xc's, superlights) or freeriders (enduros, nomads, vpfree/10s), so we're stuck with the trail riders. Being that we carry Specialized, guess what model we stock/sell the most?! STUMPY!!!! Point? Stumpy line sells for our demographics, not the nomad or heckler.

    3. Santa Cruz's are just more expensive. Flat out, period. I was comparing at retail the stumpy expert to a blt spx am kit, and the sc cost about 700 more, for equiv parts... I know, I know, its the frame where the money is, right? Well, honestly, the craftsmanship is all made in Taiwan for that bike anyway, and those bearings go out within 2 years. Cant say the FRAME is much better, but the sus. design might be. Point? People are cheap, again. Maybe not worth much more $$ than it just saying Santa Cruz?

    4. Our lead salesman is stoked on Specialized. Why? Because he believes in their product, and is confident in it. And you notice you only buy from someone with confidence in the product. You wont buy a subaru if the salesperson doesnt know much or tell you why a boxxer engine is better than a straight 4, deisel, or v6. Point? Confidence sells. In our case, it sells Specialized...

    5. Finally, we have noticed that we have only sold 1 Santa Cruz on the floor. All the others, ordered. Why? because people who buy a Santa Cruz WANT A SANTA CRUZ. They want it because its Santa Cruz, and they know exactly what they want. They researched it, know what build kit, and why they want one. Ive never sold a Santa Cruz to a customer without them coming in and saying "Hey, I want a large Blur LT in the Ano Black with the x9 AM kit and talas rlc, please..." other than one.

    Hope this helps, this is just what i see on a day to day basis as your local bike shop employee... Btw, we carry Santa Cruz

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the replies guys. Contacting Jungle about a test is an option. I am not really even that concerned about getting a bike to take for a test ride. All I want to do is sit on one in the shop to make sure that it fits ok.

    Stumpy_Steve... you make some good points here. If I really do my home work on the frame geometry, compared to my own bike, I could have a fair idea about what size to get.

    Another thing I am thinking of doing is to get a medium size used Heckler off ebay, ride it for a while to get the feel of the size then sell it if necessary, or even keep it if I really like it. This would be like an extended comprehensive test ride. It seems like medium Hecklers sell really well on ebay in the UK so it would be easy enough to sell it on. I nearly bought one a few months back. I was outbid in the last seconds of an auction. Before I bid, I posted here about a medium fitting my size (5' 6") and got some useful info back from the same size riders with mediums.

    The quest continues....

    Cheers!

  10. #10
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    Andy, I'm almost 100% sure a medium is what you are after. I'm 5' 7" and a big bloke at 14 stone. I tried the 2006 model at llandegla and just had to move the bars back a bit as it had a long stem on it, but bear in mind that the 2007 medium is also 1 inch shorter.

    One of the chaps that rides with us is a bit shorter than me, probably 5' 5" and unlike unfit me, he has a pretty small build, and also rides a medium. In no way does it look large for him.

    It would obviously be ideal if you can track one down to sit on, even better to try on the trail, but they are like gold dust at the moment. I'm on my 6th week waiting for my frame to arrive, looking at 8 weeks now at the end of May.

    Rather than look at the ebay route, have a word with the LBS about it and mention that you want to be sure about sizing, when the bike arrives, I'm pretty sure they would be willing to order a different frame size for you, as a medium Heckler frame will sell quickly anyhow.

    I was in the same position as before I changed my mind for the Heckler, I was considering a Spesh Enduro SL, and I was also between sizes acoording to the Spesh guides for the SL. The LBS was suggesting a small would suit me better, and gave me some re-assurance that if I wasn't happy with it, that I could opt for a medium instead as they were more abundant.

  11. #11
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    I asked in the shop what would happen if the bike came in and after trying it (ie sitting on it in the shop) I thought it was all wrong. The guy said that I was basically stuck with it as the bike would be effectively used. No offer was made to change the frame. I also asked if I could come in and sit on one that came in for another customer. That suggestion went no where also. He insisted that a small was the frame for me, without ever asking what height I was. That would be fair enough if I didn't overlap on the sizing chart. I was also looking at a standard build also, a so called 'off the peg' bike which could arguably be even easier to shift.

    I take your point about a medium being a better starting pont from the LBS perspective to sell on and thanks also for the heads up on your own Heckler sizing.

  12. #12
    Kiwi
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    No good hmmmm

    might be time to consider taking your business elsewhere...

    I bought a medium Blur, from a shop in another city, because the locals weren't very helpful.
    When it arrived, it seemed a bit small. I rang the shop owner, said I had just ridden it up and down the driveway, and was concerned about sizing. His reponse was "how can you possibly tell by riding on your driveway, get it out on some real (dry) trails. If it still feels wrong, I'll change it."

    So I did, and he did. I now ride a large Blur :-)

  13. #13
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    The answer...

    The answer lies in how hard a shop is willing to then go and resell a bike that came in for someone else. We do it all the time with a standard build, or anything that might be marketable, its one reason we have 9 Santa Cruz bikes at the shop now. A bike comes in, someone wants a different size, or different color, we add it to "stock". Some shops can't do that, and I completely understand, as its difficult to see $20-$40,000 sitting on the floor when the high end business slows down. But again, thats when its time to get creative and see how you can move those bikes.

    Now, if it were someone we didn't know, came in with some really crazy, expensive, requests for upgrades to a bike, that might be difficult to market, well, thats the time for a little talk... "Ok dude, we'll order this stuff, but its expensive and there's a tiny market for it, so when it comes in, you ARE going to like it, right???" 9 times out of 10, someone with expensive and unique tastes knows that they are buying custom items that are hard to sell, and they are fine with it. Its kind of like buying a monogrammed bright pink helmet...you'd better know that when it comes in, its yours, even if the size is wrong. But, for standard items, for items that even though they are pricey, they sell really well, we won't make someone take something they don't like.

  14. #14
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    i understand where your coming from, but you obviously are in an area where people are willing to drop 5 gs for a mountain bike. im sure you have cheap people, too, no doubt. but in our, and im sure others, the situation is different when the average bike we sell is about 500$. Demographics, my friend. We all can't be strictly high end... Just playing the devils advocate here

  15. #15
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    Yes...

    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpy_Steve
    i understand where your coming from, but you obviously are in an area where people are willing to drop 5 gs for a mountain bike. im sure you have cheap people, too, no doubt. but in our, and im sure others, the situation is different when the average bike we sell is about 500$. Demographics, my friend. We all can't be strictly high end... Just playing the devils advocate here
    I completely agree, and trust me, we unfortunately do a lot of work on Wal-Mart bikes, and live in a not so economically advantaged area. So, that makes it tough, and its one reason we specifically decided not to carry non-boutique (whatever that term means), brands in an effort to concentrate on the higher end. Do we lose a lot of business to Joe Jones and the others down the street? Hel1 ya we do, but we made the decision to concentrate on what we liked as riders and if we lost the $500 bike sale, so be it, if they like the sport as much as we think they will, they'll be back...wanting the next level up...then the next level, etc. If they buy the $500.00 K2 from Joe Jones, I'm not going to knock the bike, we'll fix it for them when it breaks, and let them play around with the bikes in the shop, hopefully they'll get bit with the addictive biking bug and we'll see them down the road. If not, and that K2 simply sits in the garage, well, our shop probably wasn't for them anyway.

    We have a surprising amount of dedicated riders, and its ever growing, who are willing to ride a bike nicer than their car. I love that... What we have had to do without, when concentrating on the high end, is frills. The shop isn't terribly littered with a ton of swag, jerseys, helmets, etc., although we have the basics, it was a simple matter of cutting overhead to allow us to serve the high end in sales. Its an old school shop with new technology is the only way to put it. Nothing pretty, except the bikes...

  16. #16
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    Leisure Lakes

    I checked Leisure Lakes web site in the UK and they are doing the lowest spec 'off the peg' 2007 Heckler for £1799. That's £200 cheaper than my LBS. I spoke to LL about a 2006 Cannondale Prophet 800 recently, and they were more than happy for me to post it back for a refund, if a medium ( the only size left!) didn't fit. I think I would rather spend my hard earned with them, even though its means mail order. As I said previously, my LBS is basically doing mail order in the shop if you want a Santa Cruz. I think that it is interesting that LL are giving a discount on the Heckler. On top of it all, my LBS wouldn't give me anything off or throw in any gear, as this is a 'premium brand'.

    Ok..I'll buy this 'premium brand' from another shop hundreds of miles away, mail order, that gives a bit of flexability and isn't 'doing me a favour' by letting me buy a Santa Cruz.


    Thanks to everyone who contributed...

  17. #17
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    Andy interesting. I just noticed the Santa Cruz PDF quotes the "off the peg" Heckler at £1799 and the Santa Cruz web page with prices quotes it at £1999 so although I'm not defending your dealer, there is a certain amount of confusion.. Have a look yourself:

    http://www.santacruzbikes.co.uk/bicy...07_pricing.pdf
    http://www.santacruzbikes.co.uk/bicy...g/heckler.html

    Build specifications are here by the way:
    http://www.santacruzbikes.co.uk/bicy...2007_specs.pdf


    May be worth an email to SC to confirm and asking Leisure Lakes to confirm the price based on the above links.

    In any case my order is also with Leisure Lakes and the guys in Wolverhampton are incredibly helpful.

    PS: come join us on the "I want my Heckler" thread
    PPS: if you get your bike before me you are in trouble

  18. #18
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    Leisure Lakes contd...

    Ajyoung,

    Thanks for that info. I phoned Leisure Lakes in Wolverhampton and spoke to David who went out of his way to help me. He phoned Jungle to check availability and ask for advice on sizing. I also asked about sending the bike back if it didn't fit. That was ok also but obviously I would have another wait for the new one.

    Jungle said that if I was into jumping etc, small would be best. For general trail riding a medium would be better. Thats pretty much what I figured, but still appreciate the re-assurance of being able to change the bike.

    Leisure Lakes rock. No comparison with my Local Joke Shop.

    Ummmm....small or medium?

    I wonder if anyone have any pictures of a 07 Heckler in small?

    I feel another thread comming on!

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