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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My GIANT Night Out

Last night I had to pick up some replacement cleats for my Crank Brothers pedals. I love how the pedals function. They are easy to clip in and out of and I can clip-in from two directions. The mechanism doesn't get clogged with dirt. They're great... except for the cleat mounts.

The aluminum bolts are just too soft and mine started to strip the first week I owned them. The mounts would come loose and I would torque them down pretty hard and strip them out even more.

I finally found my "spot" and they haven't moved, but they've certainly worn down from me walking around on them and it was time to change them out. That is... if I could get them unseated from my shoes. The hex holes were too stripped to take a wrench and no amount of hammering could do it, so I headed around the corner to the Giant shop to see if they had more tools in their arsenal to deploy against my cleat. I think I may have made it more difficult by forgetting to lube a bolt or two when replacing them in a hurry. ALWAYS LUBE THE MOUNTS!

The Giant guys kindly took a hacksaw to the cleat and it was off in about 30 min. During my time in the store I stood there with a bemused look on my face as I watched the sales staff sell bikes.

A tall young woman nervously walked in an grabbed a big mountain bike with full shocks and disc brakes. She rode in a few circles around the store and then picked up a micro-bike with flat-bar and 20" wheels. She did a loop on that. By then a sales rep went over to assist and mainly stood there talking to the woman about the "feel" of the bike. The customer was riding bikes with seats that were 4-5cm too short and then being asked how it felt. At no time was the customer ever asked what purpose she intended for her bike; leisure, exercise, commuting, errands, group rides...etc. She was never sized. The sales staff just let the woman randomly guess what might be a good bike. After that they took her over to look at mountain bike helmets and biking jackets. Lots of people really don't know what options are available to them and what characteristics they should be looking for in a bike. A knowledgeable sales staff can guide a customer to make better choices. The bottom line is that only the rider knows what they want... but the sales staff can help the customer focus on what might better suit their needs and at least size them for a proper fit.

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