Today a trainee at one of the schools I’m working at at the moment came up and said that she’d got a new bicycle over the weekend. Lucky girl, I said. Let’s go down and check it out before we go out on the road. No need, she said, they checked it down the shop.

Anyway I had a quick look over and found …

– The head set was very loose.
– The steerer was loose, I could turn it very easily.
– Front left break pad was rubbing on the rim.
– The front break lever went all the way to the handle bar and still didn’t stop the bicycle.
– Front and rear tyres not pumped up.
– Front inner tube valve was at an angle.
– Rear suspension was that loose that it was very close to falling apart if I lifted the bicycle up.
– The saddle was loose.
– Rear left break pad was fitted upside down and VERY loose.
– Read left and right break pads rubbing against the rear tyre.

Oh and some good news: the indexing was spot on. When I was fixing all these things I asked my trainee again did this bicycle get checked in the shop. Yes, she said, Toy’s R Us checked it over before we got it. It took all my strength to keep my jaw in place but I think she spotted the shock/horror/anger in my eyes, since she kept asking if this bicycle would be ok to ride after I had worked on it.

Please parents, a toy store ain’t a bicycle shop! Yes, they might be selling bicycles but it is not a bicycle shop, where you will get GREAT service by someone who KNOWS what they are doing in a shop that is DEDICATED to bicycles and is not selling milk and tea etc.