Monday, 5 November 2007

Halfords Bikehut rant.

As you may be aware by now. I have recently taken on a full time job working in my local Halfords Bikehut store as a bike mechanic / sales assistant and to be honest, i'm dissapointed by the way some people view me.

I'm always hearing things relating to how bikehut mechanics are monkeys with no sense of professional competance. Lots of the customer problems i've encountered are relating to poor products rather than poor staff and we just happen to be in the firing line. People simplly don't seem to understand that a £60 bike won't stand up to what the average kid has to offer it. A half decent BMX on the other hand - will (just by keeping it out of the rain and purchasing a bike care plan costing just £30 for three years!) Everyone moans about the Vibe's and Shockwave's but the kids bikes are the worst. Anything under a 20" wheel and the brakes are next-to-usesless and the rubbish that goes on them is unnecessary and pointless. Things like stabalisers just undermine axel security and don't actually allow children to learn as they rely on the stabalisers*; and things like chain guards make cleaning very difficult. In my opinion if a child can't be trusted to keep his fingers away from a moving chainring or attempt to learn balance then they shouldn't be allowed near a bike. But if they can do these things, they shouldn't need such stupid ancillary items. Which is why I tend to point the parents towards the above-'vibe'-quality BMX's. But that leads me to another point...

On a slight tangent, when I become King of the world (and it's going to happen) the first thing I shall do is outlaw semi-horizontal dropouts and gyros. Then I will make it law for all horizontal dropout frames to come with chain-tugs as standard.

Anyways, i'm not sure about my colleagues but whenever I serve a customer I just try and be as helpfull as possible. What more can you ask?! And it really bugs me when people think I don't know how to service a headset, tap a bottom bracket thread or bleed hydraulics. Mainly we are limited only by the lack of tools at our disposal, which is irritating in itself.

However, after just completely slagging-off childrens bikes. I was refeshed to see on the new 'Pingu' bike out there is a lovely 'seal of approval' stamped to the headtube. ... Well it amused me anyways. :) Check it out next time your near halfords.

Anyways, i've now convinced my manager to get me CyTech level 2 trained. So I should be able to rub that in the face of anyone who questions my professionalism once I get it.

* - I never had stabilisers on any of my childrens bikes. Right from 16" wheels at about 4 years old on my first bike.

--- RANT ENDS ---

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