Rivendell Bicycle Works to the Rescue.
What a relief to find a bike company that revels in customer service. And the fact that I’ve never been a customer didn’t seem to matter. They were quick to help me with a seemingly obscure part I really needed. I have heard of them before, but now it was time to find out more.
I know a few people who ride Rivendell bikes, but never paid them much attention. Steel lugged frames with nice appointments seem to be the name of their game. That and some really cool pieces that could make any bike better. They appear to do things the old-fashioned way and I like that.
So as this story goes, I was out riding my 50’s Raynal three-speed having a great time. Without a care, I pedaled and smiled. A few days later I happened to glance at my saddle bag, a Nigel Smythe country classic that fits my bike so nicely and noticed a small latch hardware piece was missing. It must have been loose already and quietly fell to the pavement.
My first thought was to retrace my ride and find it where it fell. But it is so small and I rode so far I realized it was long gone. Some minor stress followed and then some time on the net to see if I could find one there. That didn’t take me to any immediate answers so I considered the expense of having a new piece made by a local machinist. I knew that would probably be out of the question. What to do?
Getting back on the computer a few days later took me to the Rivendell website. My bag seems to be no longer offered, but they have Nigel Smythe bags that are more modern. That made me want my bag back in perfect shape all the more. It is a beautiful piece that matches the look of my old bike just right. So, on a Saturday afternoon I dialed up the crew at Rivendell Bicycle Works.
Joe was great on the phone and was sure they could help. The day was ending, but he told me he would mention my needs to Vince and for me to call back or email on Monday. True to his word, my name and needs were on the list of things to do as the week started. They have supply of the latch pins on the shelf and one would be shipped immediately.
As I brought up payment, it was dismissed along with the shipping fee. The part I really need and sent free of charge, when was the last time that happened to you? You know I was totally stoked and singing a silent song of praise for this great bike company. I don’t ride a Rivendell, but I feel like a part of them is riding along with me on every push of the pedals.
I have spent more than a few sessions on their website since then and I am impressed with their products and offerings You can be sure next time I see one I will be looking closer and prodding the owner to tell me all about it. And even though I don’t need another bike, if I find a cool used Rivendell that suits my needs and size, I will be thinking about making it mine.
Also, I will see if my friends who ride them already might offer up a test ride or two. It will be great to learn about and feel the classic ride they promise. Plus the looks of lugged perfection can be a biking thrill. The selections they list on their site are exciting. I am a new fan of this company and the way they do business. Have a look for yourself and see what you think.
There is still one thing I am considering not worrying about. The replacement latch pin has a smaller head than the original. It works fine, but it would be nice to have the exact replacement. Either way, you can be sure I used a little thread locker on the holding screw so it will never come loose again.
Thanks Joe, thanks Vince, you have made me a happier biker, Turbo Bob.
Here is link to the Rivendell Bicycle Works website that is filled with custom made bikes and accessories.