Is this a Specialized thing or a dealer thing?
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  1. #1
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    Question Is this a Specialized thing or a dealer thing?

    Helping the gf shop for a new bike, we went to go test ride a Specialized Roubaix and a Trek Domane (both with a 105/Tiagra mix of components in the same price range).

    The Trek dealer said the price of the bike includes a "full" fitting and swapping out a proper sized stem, handlebars, and seat, if need be. (In fact, as he was sizing her up, he was already commenting on the things they would need to change for her.)

    The Specialized dealer on the other hand, said the bars, stem, and seat are all fixed (based on the size of the frame) with the sale of the bike. They too offered a ("basic") fitting with the sale, but said if a different size seat/stem/bars were needed, they would need to be purchased at an additional cost.

    (For the record, both places couldn’t have been nicer and more helpful, and have great reviews on Yelp.)

    In the end, my gf preferred the Roubaix. (Yeah!)

    My question is: should I try to find a Specialized dealer that will include a properly sized seat/stem/bars in with the sale, or is this just something that Specialized as whole doesn’t do?


  2. #2
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    This is a dealer thing. It might be negotiable.
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  3. #3
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    Have you tried finding a more standard-sized gf?

    Just ask the Specialized dealer if they are willing to match the deal the trek dealer is offering. If not, maybe look for another bike shop. However, in the end, having a good relationship with the shop is probably more important than saving a few dollars.

  4. #4
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    Specialized dealer sounds like a crap shop... that, or a misunderstanding. I find it unusual that a shop wouldn't be willing to replace a basic fit item such as a stem for an identical one of another length. Any shop worth its salt would do this for a customer making a purchase. A really good shop will even swap out stems before you go for a test ride.

    I think a handlebar swap is less likely and less common, but still something that should be a net balance of $0 to swap out assuming an equal part of different size is available as an aftermarket purchase. I mean really, that should be one of the advantages of buying a Specialized in the first place, the ready availability of various sizes of their own parts. So, I wouldn't hold it against a shop for not offering this but I'd definitely give them kudos for offering it and a silver star if they do it upon request.

    Saddle might be starting to push it a bit, at that point I'd expect the customer to pay any difference.

  5. #5
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    I agree with all of the above... Sounds like a dealer being crappy. I'd find a different dealer.

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    Just got a Roubaix 6 weeks ago. When doing the fit, the fitter swapped out the stem and saddle at no cost to me. Sounds like either a misunderstanding or that you need to find a different shop.

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    I wonder if the OP just got a salesman that didn't know wtf he's talking about... if you go back there, and it wasn't miscommunication, ask to talk to a manager before you leave. I suppose that is why you are here asking if it's common practice to begin with.

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    I could imagine that a bike a shop wouldn't want to swap around all the parts on a used bike. However, on new bikes, service should be key. Isn't that what sets a small shop apart from an internet website, or Walmart? One would think they would get a stock of "New Pulls" that could be swapped around a bit with new bikes for only the cost of maintaining the inventory.

    Upgrades, of course, would have to be paid for, or perhaps a difference in value.

    I suppose the dealer could also size the bike, then essentially build it up from scratch, leaving the demos on the showroom floor.

    What is the dealer markup on a $2000 or $3000 bike?

  9. #9
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    I think it's a shop thing. The shop I bought my Felt at swapped out the stem at no cost. Another shop I was test riding (non Felt) bikes at indicated that they would swap out a stem to correctly fit me on the bike but it would cost me. I went with the first shop...
    2013 Felt Z4 56cm
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  10. #10
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    I would agree that a $20-30 stem swap (if needed) should be included. I can't think of a reason to swap bars on a new bike for basic fit purposes. Maybe the Trek dealer has a bin full of removed saddles that they would allow you to choose from? That's not quite the same thing as letting you choose from any new saddle they have in stock regardless of price. In any event, the shop should give you a significant discount on equipment purchased with a new $2k bike.

    BTW, you do realize that Specialized make's a women's specific version of the Roubaix called the Ruby right?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
    I could imagine that a bike a shop wouldn't want to swap around all the parts on a used bike. However, on new bikes, service should be key. Isn't that what sets a small shop apart from an internet website, or Walmart? One would think they would get a stock of "New Pulls" that could be swapped around a bit with new bikes for only the cost of maintaining the inventory.

    Upgrades, of course, would have to be paid for, or perhaps a difference in value.

    I suppose the dealer could also size the bike, then essentially build it up from scratch, leaving the demos on the showroom floor.

    What is the dealer markup on a $2000 or $3000 bike?
    Most retail margins are 40-45% of the MSRP.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SundayNiagara View Post
    Most retail margins are 40-45% of the MSRP.
    Which means the markup on a $2000 bike is as high as $800 or $900 (including labor and overhead). But, the shop is willing to miss out on a big sale just because they don't want to spend ˝ hour making the customer happy. And, of course, there are also return customers for parts, service, and the next bike.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by SundayNiagara View Post
    Most retail margins are 40-45% of the MSRP.
    Not on a $2000-$3000 bike, they aren't. More like 35-40%.
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    There was a long thread on new bike margin on BF a while back. I think the gross margin on a $2k bike is around $500. Such discussions open a can of worms. You have LBS loyalists who will claim they never ask for a discount vs. those who shop strictly based on price. It's your money so don't let anyone tell you how/where to spend it.

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    Thanks guys, sounds like I won't sweat the bars and the seat, but will try to push for a stem, if need be.

    Guess the Trek dealer is just one of those "above and beyond" type of shops. It's a shame he doesn't sell Specializeds.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PlatyPius View Post
    Not on a $2000-$3000 bike, they aren't. More like 35-40%.
    I was in a Bikes America store and while the sales guy was looking up the Cannondale Synapse 6 Tiagra, I happened to see dealer cost, which was $754. vs $1249. MSRP. That makes it a hair under 40 points.

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    Just dropped $8K on an S-Works Roubaix at a large Specialized/Trek dealer in the Denver metro area whose initials are WRC. While shopping, the salesman assured me it would be no problem to change out the stem and seatpost as needed. When I picked it up, they didn't even offer to set it up with my measurements (which I brought with me). Took it home to set it up like my other bikes and found I needed a longer stem and a non-CGR seatpost.

    When I went back to the shop, not only did they not even HAVE alternate stems/seatposts but they most definitely wouldn't be swapped for free. They DID try to sell me a bike fit though since, obviously, the position I've been riding for years and 1000's of miles was wrong since I wanted a different stem.

    I'm actually of the opinion that it's a Specialized thing as Spesh doesn't even MAKE the stock S-Works stem for aftermarket purchase (in the all-black "colorway").

    Safe bet that'll be that last bike (or anything else if I can avoid it) that I buy from *that* shop.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldChipper View Post
    Just dropped $8K on an S-Works Roubaix at a large Specialized/Trek dealer in the Denver metro area whose initials are WRC. While shopping, the salesman assured me it would be no problem to change out the stem and seatpost as needed. When I picked it up, they didn't even offer to set it up with my measurements (which I brought with me). Took it home to set it up like my other bikes and found I needed a longer stem and a non-CGR seatpost.

    When I went back to the shop, not only did they not even HAVE alternate stems/seatposts but they most definitely wouldn't be swapped for free. They DID try to sell me a bike fit though since, obviously, the position I've been riding for years and 1000's of miles was wrong since I wanted a different stem.

    I'm actually of the opinion that it's a Specialized thing as Spesh doesn't even MAKE the stock S-Works stem for aftermarket purchase (in the all-black "colorway").

    Safe bet that'll be that last bike (or anything else if I can avoid it) that I buy from *that* shop.
    Nah...believe its more of a shop and not Specialized thing. This is just business sense and apparently the shop you dealt with doesn't have any. $8K on a Roubaix? Hope is was a S-works with Di2 and carbon wheels.

    Too bad you just didn't buy the parts and if you can't build a bike, find the best mechanic in town and build it for $100.

    If you want to improve the bike, don't install a replacement Specialized stem. Determine the length and rise +/- you need and get a Ritchie WCS 4-axis stem in the color you prefer...much better and lighter. Specialized stems aren't very good FWIW and heavy in particular. Also, purchase a better seat post like a FSA K-force Light which are popular in the pro peloton...what I ride...they have them Di2 specific for an internal battery if interested as well.

    To me, their inability to court you after you spent that kind of money is pretty unforgivable and reflects badly on them. It wouldn't take much effort on their part to satisfy you.

    Btw, you will love the bike once you get it sorted. To me a high end Roubaix is the best bike on the market for the average rider.
    Good luck.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by roadworthy View Post
    To me, their inability to court you after you spent that kind of money is pretty unforgivable and reflects badly on them. It wouldn't take much effort on their part to satisfy you.
    Agreed, $8k bike and they couldn't swap out an S-Works CG-R post and stem for something else? Those parts would fetch good money at a shop. At least those parts are easy to swap out yourself.

    OldChipper, if you're interested in selling the CG-R post I may be interested in buying it as a spare.

  20. #20
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    Is this a Specialized thing or a dealer thing?

    Carbon wheels yes; Di2, that's the $10K S-Works Roubaix!

    Might be in touch about the CG-R post. Turns out getting the non-carbon rail saddle clamp hardware (that they did give me for free after I complained) fixes the setback problem (with a non-carbon rail saddle of course) and I haven't made a final decision yet about the CG-R vs a standard post. On the week-long tour I just did, I really would have appreciated the CG-R along one section of road (had me wishing for some Tramadol! )
    Well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion man. - The Dude

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldChipper View Post
    Just dropped $8K on an S-Works Roubaix at a large Specialized/Trek dealer in the Denver metro area whose initials are WRC. While shopping, the salesman assured me it would be no problem to change out the stem and seatpost as needed. When I picked it up, they didn't even offer to set it up with my measurements (which I brought with me). Took it home to set it up like my other bikes and found I needed a longer stem and a non-CGR seatpost.

    When I went back to the shop, not only did they not even HAVE alternate stems/seatposts but they most definitely wouldn't be swapped for free. They DID try to sell me a bike fit though since, obviously, the position I've been riding for years and 1000's of miles was wrong since I wanted a different stem.

    I'm actually of the opinion that it's a Specialized thing as Spesh doesn't even MAKE the stock S-Works stem for aftermarket purchase (in the all-black "colorway").

    Safe bet that'll be that last bike (or anything else if I can avoid it) that I buy from *that* shop.
    This goes along with my hunch. Thanks for posting your experience.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tranzition View Post
    This goes along with my hunch. Thanks for posting your experience.
    Just curious..since you responded, what is your hunch?

  23. #23
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    It's not a Specialized thing. It is done everywhere. Houses, cars, etc. Everything should be written on the sales receipt. If it is not written down, it ain't happening.

    I do not know how old you are, but this has been going on for many many years. One thing for certain, they got your money. To help others, you could mention the shops name.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by roadworthy View Post
    Too bad you just didn't buy the parts and if you can't build a bike, find the best mechanic in town and build it for $100.
    Please fill me in on this mystery mechanic that will build up a full bike for $100.

    Last time I got a bike rebuilt, it was for a Spesh warranty frame and the shop 'gave me a deal' and charged me $300 for the full build instead of $450 for their 'pro build'.

  25. #25
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    Agree, dealer thing
    I just bought a Cannondale CAAD from a LBS, I knew I would need a shorter stem and a few other tweaks. Arranged to drop my existing bike at the shop 8.00am, they set up the CAAD using measurements from old bike, fitted a shorter stem with a bit of a rise, few other things I wanted. I went back after work and spent 35 mins on the turbo trainer while the guy tweaked the seat height and reach etc., spot on and not a mention of any extra costs, even fitted new cleats during the trainer fitting and threw in a couple of spare tubes. Now my favourite of the 3 shops in town

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