I bought my bike from a small bike shop nearby. They were busy, yet everyone was friendly. I did feel like they didn’t take me completely seriously though. There was nothing bad about the service, just nothing great either. I didn’t really get a bad feeling about them until later.
I returned once for a tire repair, derailleur adjustment, and some accessories. I wanted fenders, but their only response was “We don’t have any in stock to fit”. They didn’t offer to order any, or offer any solution whatsoever.
I tried another bike shop. A local chain of four or five stores. They have some really high-end bikes there, so I didn’t expect to get treated as a first-class customer, but I figured I’d at least have a chance at getting some fenders.
As it turns out, the bike mechanic at this shop is big into “utility bikes” such as mine, rather than having the road-racer attitude. We talked for quite a while. They didn’t have fenders in stock to fit, but ordered some.
Today, I brought my bike in to have them installed. I also had them look at the front derailleur that I was having some minor problems with. The first bike shop had apparently damaged my derailleur cable. Also, I managed to damage the rear axle (jumping a curb), which caused a slight loosening of the bearings. This happened before the visit to the first bike shop, and they didn’t bother to look at it.
The damaged axle doesn’t need to be replaced at this time, just needed the bearings tightened. The mechanic was extremely friendly, helpful, and tried to show me everything he did, so I can learn more about repairing my bike on my own.
I’m extremely impressed with the level of service and attention I got at this shop. I’ll be going there from now on.