About Our Test Rides

Everything You Need to Know

We offer many wonderful types and brands of bicycles. One of the best ways to select the right one is to test ride a few bikes to feel how they differ from each other and from your current ride. Many people feel that this is the best part of shopping for new bikes! However, for your safety (and the care of our bikes), please review the following information as you plan your new bike exploration.

What To Wear & Bring For Your Test Ride

While you're welcome to test ride our bicycles in street clothes, we recommend wearing athletic or rubber-soled shoes so that you'll be able to pedal and get on and off each bicycle comfortably.

For test riding sport bikes such as road and off-road models for training, racing or long-distance riding, feel free to wear your full-on riding gear, shorts, jersey and shoes (you can suit up in our dressing room). This is the best way to compare new machines because it's what you're used to when you're riding your current bike.

Similarly, if you use a certain pedal/shoe system, you can bring your pedals, too, and we'll install them on the bike so you'll be able to ride what you're used to.

If you have a helmet, please bring it. We have test-ride loaner lids, yet yours has been fit to your head so it will feel more comfortable and secure.

Conclusion: You'll focus more on the differences between each test bike if you have fewer distractions caused by other unfamiliar equipment.

As a suggestion, if you're considering a new bike to replace Old Faithful, bring it in and ride it first so you can feel the difference between the old and new bikes. This back-to-back test is a great way to judge the improvement new technology makes.

Our Test Ride Requirements

In order to test ride a bicycle, you must be at least 18 years of age or come into the store with your legal parent or guardian.

We require a valid photo ID in order to test ride. We'll put this in a safe place and return it when you finish riding.

If you don't have identification with you, please don't ask about leaving other "valuables," such as your car keys, Rolex watch or Gucci loafers. We're sorry, but we can't take responsibility for personal items like this (and believe us, we've had some interesting offers over the years, such as the woman who offered her husband as collateral).

Also, for your safety, test rides aren't possible after dark or in poor weather conditions.

How We Prep Our Bikes

Once you've selected a model to test ride, we'll give it a quick once-over to ensure it's ride ready. This includes topping off the tire pressure and checking the brakes and gears. We may also need to adjust the seat to fine-tune the fit. If you're using a special pedal/shoe system and you brought your pedals, we'll install them for you.

Please tell us if you're unfamiliar with shifting and braking so we can demonstrate. Modern bicycles have improved considerably. It'll only take a few minutes for us to show you how the test-ride bicycle's shifters and brakes work. This little lesson guarantees you'll enjoy the test ride while also helping you fully appreciate the bike should you decide to buy it.

The Test Ride

There are several ideal places near our store for putting a new bike through its paces, which we'll explain before sending you on the ride. Feel free to ride far enough to brake, shift, stand and climb a hill, carve some corners and really feel how the bike handles. Test rides are generally between 10-20 minutes.

We don't allow testing new bicycles off road because this dirties them and wears the tires, which means the bike isn't really "new" anymore. Please be nice to our bicycles to keep them in new condition, too. Even seemingly indestructible mountain bikes can be damaged when handled carelessly or used improperly.

If you'd like to try a model off road, ask us about demo days. A few times each year the bike companies send out a truck or two full of their current models for people to test out on local trails. This will give you a great feel for the way a particular bike rides or feels. And it gives you a chance to really try out the full-suspension designs you're interested in.

Thanks for reviewing our test-ride procedures and policies. If you have any questions at all about this or anything cycling, please ask. We look forward to showing you a great new bike sometime soon!