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Parts suppliers?
#1
First off, let me start by saying I am new to this forum, so hello Smile I have been a bicycle mechanic for around 5 years now, and recently moved to a new city. I met a guy who currently sells 1 brand of bicycles consisting of two different models. He is looking to expand and bring in more models, and full scale repair service. I have been hired to essentially set up the entire service and repair part of the business, including finding good suppliers.

My question is this, what are some good wholesale parts suppliers (USA, or ships here anyway) to get me started with the basics? Any good info or other websites will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
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#2
First off where are you from? And where are the parts going to be ship to?
And last what kind of bicycle are you talking about. As far as parts try going with QBP
they can help you setup an account. Hope this helps and good luck to you.
My dad always told me a Sledge a matic can fix any thing.
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#3
(02-26-2010, 07:11 PM)Surly LHT Wrote:  First off where are you from? And where are the parts going to be ship to?
And last what kind of bicycle are you talking about.As far as parts try going with QBP
they can help you setup an account.Hope this helps and good luck to you.

I'm from Ohio. I was looking at QBP and J & B. Right now it looks like our main line is going to be Jamis, with perhaps some others. But since we will be fixing random brands people bring in, I need a good general parts supplier.
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#4
hi Dharma_Punk check this to websites they have good deals .
http://www.jensonusa.com .
http://www.pricepoint.com
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#5
You should also look into the Surly LHT bicycle they do sell good around here.
QBP would be your best bet for good parts.
My dad always told me a Sledge a matic can fix any thing.
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#6
Jesnonusa and pricepoint are not wholesalers, they're retailers, supplied by wholesalers.

QBP is a good place to start, but they have been very picky in who they give accounts out to recently, since so many people started selling on the interweb. They want to protect the independent bike dealer. Bravo, I say.

Seattle Bike Supply is easier, but they also support the independent dealers.

Security Bicycle mainly supplies custom frame builders, or shops that make custom frames.

All of these wholesalers will require a picture of the (working) service department, a street sign, copy of a printed ad (or paid advertisement), a dedicated phone number, and proof of liability insurance.
I *think* those are QBP's requirements.
Good luck.

P.S. - There are MANY other wholesalers out there, but those are a few to get you started.
By the way, most of the time, if you want to sell someone's product, you call them directly, and ask for a list of wholesalers in your area, and since wholesalers have more than one company's products, this is a great way to find out wholesalers.
Dedicated scholar of bicycles
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#7
Norco also has a large wholesale catalog and distributes to bike shops. They carry the following brands: http://www.norco.com/company/distributed-brands/
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#8
' Wrote:All of these wholesalers will require a picture of the (working) service department, a street sign, copy of a printed ad (or paid advertisement), a dedicated phone number, and proof of liability insurance.

Providing this will not be an issue at all. I have browsed their website as well as others, and know most reputable places require this. Has anyone dealt with QBP or J & B? I was thinking of getting an account going with both of them just to keep options open, but am very interested in other places anyone might know.

And yes, I know of JensonUSA and PricePoint, but they are retail, I need wholesale, as of course we need to turn a profit aswell.

Oh, and Jr14, I say bravo aswell, lets keep the LBS's open, that is the only reason I took this job besides a total love of bikes, helping people, and a love for riding.
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#9
Well good for you. Seems like you're on the right track. QBP is a good company. Once you have an account, they treat you well. I am not familiar with J&B. Lemme look them up... (3 minutes later)... Holy Crap... How in the hell didn't I know about J&B Importers? Wait, I DID know! J&B was listed as the sole distributer for Kore products now. Why didn't I follow up on that?

Anywho, I have no experience with them, but they carry a lot of stuff, and Norco, which I forgot. They aren't exactly clear on how easy it is to get an account with them.

By the way, when you talk these people, make sure you know certain things. Wholesalers do NOT want to talk to people that don't know the business. Have your business ID number (or whatever your state calls it), your FEIN (Federal Employer Identification Number), contact info, and if you slip up and don't know what Net 15 or Net 30 ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Net_30 )are, you run the risk of getting hung up on. (Basically how long you have to pay (15 or 30 days) after the goods are delivered to you.) If you've taken a loan to expand the business, you might not have to take net terms, and can pay up front. Telling them that will a: Put them at ease, because no matter what, they get their money, and b: Tells them you are in it for a while, since you have capital. Just make sure to phrase it something like "Oh, I don't need Net terms, we're going to buy the stock up front with cash. Can we talk net terms later?"

They love that kinda stuff.Smile
Dedicated scholar of bicycles
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#10
J&B is cheaper, but slower to ship, less consistent on having things in stock, etc. But they and QBP are the two big guys that have everything.

Seattle Bike Supply and Velo-Orange are two smaller guys with a little more "specialty" type stuff. Beyond the basics, it's going to depend on what type of shop you are putting together.

Check out the Torker line of bikes. Good prices on well outfitted bikes.
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#11
All very excellent advice so far. Right now, we are just looking to start small and see where things go. Do you know anywhere I could get a good list of parts to keep in stock? I know the basics, tubes, tires, cables, etc. but a list of what I should be having on hand would help a lot. As I said, I am used to being a mechanic, but have never had to deal with keeping parts in stock before, I just reached for a rack, haha. I'm really excited about this opportunity I have been offered and want to do it right.
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#12
Well, you already said the small stuff, so lots of the stuff that breaks all the time. You were a mechanic, so think of what most of the repairs were.

Brake arms (v-brake), lots of brake pads, brake rotors, disc brake pads, a couple of each level of components (2 xtr, 2 xt, 2 slx derailleurs, shifters, etc.), chains. Basically have a good assortment of drivetrain stuff in stock. People know exactly what they want when it comes to the expensive parts on the bike. You can be more lax on the small stuff like grips, handlebars, stems, etc. I'm not saying people don't know what they want in a handlebar, but they are a little more flexible than drivetrain stuff. Unless you're talking to a serious biker, and in that case, if they support the LBS idea, they'll gladly wait for a special order of what they want. Of course, its always good to have used parts to loan in this case. I always have spares on hand for folks that are waiting for handlebars, seats, stems, seatposts, etc.
Dedicated scholar of bicycles
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#13
I have a different view. I would keep only in stock the parts for the line of bikes I sell. As customers come in and need certain things I would profile their bike(s) and order the things that would wear out fast. Now for the major sellers like tires, tubes, patch kits, etc. I would stock about 5pr. of every size tire/tube, 10 patch kits, couple of cantilever pads, few pair of v-brake pads, and some of the old style u brake pads. My way is much different then others because it is how I am going to start out fresh. Your case is pretty easy. Look at how many customers you are getting now, how many the shop has had through the past, any local Blah-mart for competition, your location like near a park with trails or metropolitan area, and your budget of what you can spend. Ok I huffed and puffed enough lol. Sounds like a big job, and all it is is just dedication and smart planning. Wink . What neck of Ohio you around, if ya don't mind me asking? Just a major city?
Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
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#14
(03-01-2010, 03:23 AM)Bill Wrote:  What neck of Ohio you around, if ya don't mind me asking? Just a major city?
Downtown Columbus, so most of our customers are gunna be city riding folk, no hills here, so everyone is riding fixed gears, which I guess makes my life easy, but I still want to be prepared.
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#15
(03-01-2010, 07:05 AM)Dharma_Punk Wrote:  so everyone is riding fixed gears

My personal hell.Big Grin
Dedicated scholar of bicycles
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#16
(03-01-2010, 07:05 AM)Dharma_Punk Wrote:  
(03-01-2010, 03:23 AM)Bill Wrote:  What neck of Ohio you around, if ya don't mind me asking? Just a major city?
Downtown Columbus, so most of our customers are gunna be city riding folk, no hills here, so everyone is riding fixed gears, which I guess makes my life easy, but I still want to be prepared.

Columbus downtown, wow, good area to have a business. Originally I'm from the NE part Ohio, where there are fewer places without hills lol. You should do very well with all the advice from everyone Smile .
Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
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