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Great SoCal on Cannondale !!!(10 posts)

Great SoCal on Cannondale !!!Crash
May 31, 2001 10:26 PM
Sale starting this Monday (06/04/2001) at Helen's in Santa Monica:

$1350 2001 R1000 (CAAD 4, double or triple, Ultegra/105 mix)
$2199 2001 R2001si (CAAD 5, doublr or triple, Ultegra,
Mavik 'K' wheels)

Best non-employee deals I found, ask for Chad, GREAT GUY !!!
Helens' Santa Monicamike mcmahon
Jun 3, 2001 7:56 PM
I think Helen's SM is a fine shop, if a bit overpriced. I like Helen's Marina del Rey better. However, I've got to tell you that in close to 20 years of cycling, I recently ran into the dumbest bike shop employee in history at the SM shop. I was looking for a quill stem adaptor. He tracked one down in the shop, without a price tag. When I asked how much, he said: "I don't know. 30 bucks?" Like I was supposed to OK the price. It only got worse from there. He couldn't figure out how to use what appeared to be a relatively simple price book. I wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt and believe that he had been hitting the bong hehind the shop. However, I think he really was just dumber than a box of rocks. The really bad part is that this guy has been working there for quite a long time. BTW, his name wasn't Chad.
Helens' Santa MonicaCrash
Jun 3, 2001 11:08 PM
I've been there a bunch of times, and even bought a full suspension mountain bike from them, and this is the first I've heard of the bong behind the back (and I thought they liked me !). I've only been going to Helen's for the last six months or so, and I've heard other stories that they can be pricey. All I know is they saved me close to $500 on my Santa Cruz, and these are by far the best prices I had seen on these Cannondales.
Also, it's a little out of the way for me to get down there from my office, and when I took my SC in for it's first tune-up they did it for me at lunch time WHILE I WAITED ! They weren't that busy, and they probably don't do this all of the time, but I was still very impressed.
I haven't met anyone that fits your description, but don't most shops have a token Jeff Spicoli ???
Truemike mcmahon
Jun 3, 2001 11:41 PM
Like I said, Helen's SM will generally treat you right. I just couldn't believe that a reputable shop would permit this nit-wit to stick around as long as he had apparently been there. Who knows, maybe he was recovering from the flu and I should give him the benefit of the doubt. However, do yourself a favor. If you're looking for road gear, head south a few miles and talk to the boys at Helen's in Marina del Rey. The manager, Scott, is a great guy who knows and loves to talk bikes. MDR is a bit smaller and specializes in high-end road bikes. Despite the fact that all Helen's shops (I think there are at least five of them now) are a bit pricy, it's still possible to find bargains. I bought my Torellis EL-OS at MDR five years ago and got a good deal on it. They remembered my purchase and would discount subsequent buys, move my bike up in the service queue, or otherwise treat me right.
Well, it's better than my experience at a different shop.Biff
Jun 9, 2001 12:51 PM
If I have to choose between a stoned LBS employee and a slick used-car salesman type, I'll take the stoned one. At least he's honest. I had an experience at a different SoCal shop (it will remain unnamed) a few years ago. I took my Salsa A La Carte mountain bike in to have it converted to a threadless headset and to have a new suspension fork mounted. I had some very nice Avid V-brakes already on the bike, which worked perfectly and had nothing to do with the headset service I was getting. When I picked my bike up, the guy told me that Avids were not worthy of a Salsa frame and immediately tried to sell me some marked-up XTR brakes.

That was the last time I ever went to that shop.
I'll bet I know the shopmike mcmahon
Jun 10, 2001 11:04 PM
I'll try to keep a long story as short as possible, but it's a long story. A big shop in L.A. sold me a Griffen mountain bike. About a two months later, the frame broke in two. I took it back to the shop and the shop manager said he would return it to Griffen in S.D. County to check on warranty. A few days later, I talked to Griffen and they said they couldn't do anything about the frame because the serial number on the bike had been obliterated (the salesperson couldn't find it when I bought the bike, so we didn't sweat it at the time). When I assured the Griffen guy that I didn't scratch off the serial number, he told me that the bike was probably some type of promotional give-away item that never should have been on sale in a shop as "new." Griffen told me to to deal with the shop.

I called the manager back, and his attitude was appalling. He told me that I would have to deal with Griffen, as it was their frame that broke. When I told him that everything seemed to indicate that his shop sold me a used bike, he became somewhat indignant and said: "We don't sell used bikes." After the phone call, I did a bit of research and found a California statute that makes it illegal for a shop to sell a bicycle without a serial number. I sent a lengthy letter to manager notifying him of the shop's violation of this statute and the fact that the serial number was not only scratched off but covered with black tape (same as frame color). The manager didn't call me and wouldn't accept any more calls from me. Certainly, Griffen wouldn't send out a bike without a serial number, and no reputable shop would accept a "new" bike without one. I pinned the problem squarely on the shop and was pissed that it would do nothing.

After realizing that the shop was going to do nothing, the guys at Griffen stepped up and agreed to replace the frame. Not only did they give me a new frame, they tore all the components off the broken frame and built up the new one, free of charge. I have nothing but terrific things to say about the guys at Griffen. The shop is another matter and I haven't returned to this shop since. My gut tells me that we're discussing the same shop. Although I am confident that my summary of this transaction is completely accurate and probably even leaves out a few nasty details about the transaction with the shop, I'd rather not name the shop here. By doing so, I would run the risk that the shop sues for defamation. Although I'm confident I'd win the case, I'm also confident that I would first have to spend a lot of money defending myself.

As you can probably determine from my previous messages, the shop is not Helen's. Like you I'd rather deal with a shops with the occasional nit-wit than the type of shop that would pull a stunt like this. If you're interested drop me an e-mail and we can figure out whether we're talking about the same shop.

Helens' westwood -jonathanniklas
Jun 13, 2001 7:44 AM
Helens SM is great, as is also Helens in westwood. A bit small, but nice service. At least Jonathan did a great job tracking cyclocross bikes for me last summer. Thanks for that. My bike has been great!
Jun 19, 2001 11:51 AM
Well, all I have to say about Helens in the Marina is they suck. Some time ago after shopping and deciding, I went there ready to pluck down $2000~ on some Cannondale. After standing very very patiently and waiting probably 20 mins while some guy picked out his tire irons pedal cages and finally bought them, the sales clerk who $#cking knew I was next because I was sure to make it obvious, turns to help some little good looking lady who rolled in just two minutes before.

Now, I'm something of a vicious guy too, but heck, leave it to the off work hours you dumb clerk. That kinda commission don't come every day you $5/hour slave boy! Well, the manager got a phone call from me after I went to I. Martin and put down $3000+ instead on a Klein Quantum Pro. The manager had the same burned out dumb F*$K over paid sales clerk wish I had a better job attitude.

I'll never return, but to give them a hard time. (Go in and make the attendant help me for an hour and a half thinking he's going to get a $4000 sale, but just to bail out with a smile on my face.)

I've heard good things about Helens SM.

You want a real good small road store? Velo Pasadena. Superstore? I. Martin. Imports? Bike Adrenaline in Simi.
That'll teach 'emmike mcmahon
Jun 19, 2001 9:36 PM
So you're going to waste 90 minutes of your time wasting a "$5/hour slave boy's" time to prove what point? Is this passive-aggressive act going to convince Helen's to hire better salespeople? Is it just going to make you feel better? If so, 90 minutes of your time must not be worth much.

FWIW, I lived within walking distance of I. Martin for four years and walking distance from Helen's MDR for two years. I have been in each shop dozens of times easily. After more than one bad experience at I. Martin, I will never buy anything there again. Like I said in a previous message, I never received anything but first-class treatment from the people at Helen's MDR.
That'll teach 'emLardog
Jun 20, 2001 9:55 AM
Thanks for your reply.

Nope, never wasted 90 minutes in Helen's. Just might one day though, just to make me feel better.

FWIW I lived in Playa/Manhattan/Hermosa for a combined 10 years. Not walking distance to Helen's, of course, but been there plenty.

I guess you, as a guy like me, never were waiting for service when a good looking girl walked in..... lucky.....