Support Your Local Bike Shop, Kids

…or you might get ripped off.

I will admit: I belong in the geriatrics unit, not in a 28 year old woman’s body. For survival reasons I have adapted to the technological demands  required to succeed  in our society, but I still prefer pen to paper, sending and receiving correspondence through the post, but most pertinently in this case, person to person interactions.

The Thompson website shares this anecdote:

“We discovered a counterfeit Thomson Stem on eBay recently. The seller took the auction down when we pointed the issue out. However, be warned when you buy from eBay or Amazon or anything similar, it is not necessarily a bike shop you are dealing with. The goods may or may not be new, and they may or may not be genuine.

If the seller has no contact information you are left with little in the way of remedy.

The really sad thing about this is that the counterfeit item was as much after shipping as buying a genuine item from a local bike shop.”

The Counterfit, from BikeMonkey.com

BikeMonkey.com provides more insight:

“From Dave (the Stig): A couple of clues. We don’t make a stem that looks like this. The bolts are not genuine. The job number is wrong (only we would know that), the instructions have a lot of mis-spellings. The bag is the wrong weight material, the string is wrong as well. Honestly, the machining and laser marking are not bad. We don’t know what alloy it is and the anodized finish is not good.

Most LBS’s would not have a counterfeit item. Items like this are made in China and only shipped into countries with lax customs. This stem was purchased by the eBay store owner in Taiwan and brought back in luggage. That you can still get away with.

American LBS’s have good inventory. The issue with eBay or Amazon is anonymity. if you don’t know who you are dealing with and you can’t contact them, you have little leverage.

We swapped the guy who bought this for the real thing. We did not have to do that. Would Gucci, Coach, Ralph Lauren or for that matter other bike brands swap and make you whole? I would not bet large amounts of money on that. Just be smart.”

So if not for the jovial smile of Everybody Bikes owner, Mike Penza, stop on in for the legit bike parts…seriously.

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