My Innovation Bike Shop experience was awesome
I grew up on the UWS. The bike shop on 96th street was always where I went for bike needs because it's visible. It's on a busy crosstown street and, and it was always crowded. Crowded wasn't ever a plus, it was always mayhem in there, but it's what I knew. I can't say I received great service there, the employees were pretty abrupt if not rude. And I recall getting my bike back after having the tires trued, and having the feeling that nothing had been done to my bike. Well, I haven't ridden my bike in YEARS. 6 at least but more like 10. My bike had collected dust and lost air in my storage room and, later it would be forgotten in the bike room in my building. Well, a bike need arose and I had to fish it out of the bike room. Covered in more dust, with grips that had decomposed, and tires that were lifeless, I decided to roll it to Innovation Bike shop on 106th. The reviews were great. And frankly, the idea of dealing with the 96th street shop didn't appeal to me at all. My Innovation Bike Shop experience was awesome. I walked in, was helped within 3 minutes, left my bike there on a Tuesday for a tune up, with a Friday pick-up. I was told that I'd get a call if something was found during the tune-up that needed fixing. I received a call on Wednesday afternoon ... the bike was ready for pick-up. I almost didn't recognize the bike. There was NO dust on it. Not even on the odometer wires that snaked up the fork. The gears looked new, no dust caked grease anywhere to be found. The rims were shiny. And the grips I had picked out were on the handlebars. I couldn't believe how much care had been put into the tune-up. Innovation Bike shop is my new Bike Shop. And good riddance 96th street :)))))
The problem with most bike shops is "bike shop attitude."
The problem with most bike shops is "bike shop attitude." When my 40+ bulky frame enters, all I get is snickering, 'smart' remarks like "you want a comfort bike," they show me all these seats with 2 inches of foam, joke about if I want a shopping basket, etc. They don't care that I've been riding for 25 years; they are more interested in their jokes. I guess their problem is that although they do have jokes, they won't get my cash, which is what business is all about. So, I was delighted to discover Innovation Bike Shop where there is NO such attitude. Leo and Camie are not only both great guys with serious experience, but they sold me the bike I wanted to have. Sure, they made suggestions about which components to have and which not, but they did it respectfully and their ideas were great. The shop carries a great line of products for urban bikers. No matter if you are doing interval training in Central Park (when the boys in blue are not watching) or simply a street rider, you will be happy here. They truly do INNOVATE and came up with some great solutions. They know the city and what is important for NYC riders. They cannot do anything about the police, but they will tune you up to outrun them! I bought a Cannondale Bad Boy with disk brakes because it allows you to swap out wheel sets (700 X 23 mm for the road and 26 X 2" knobbies for the snow or trail). With all that wheel swapping, the disks required a bit of tweaking. The guys at Innovation Bike Shop were happy to do all that and FAST. I also gave them my 15 year-old GT hard-tail to tune up; that bike has been through thick and thin with me, from taxi collisions to 0-degree spills on the ice by the river in January. So, it has a few twists and curves in it that were not part of the original design. Nonetheless, Julio and Camie got that running so well, I almost wondered why I bought the Cannondale on my ride home. Altogether, this is a great bike shop located close by to Central Park, Columbia University, and Riverside Park. Their prices are fine and the work they do is superb. They rent bikes too, so avoid the lines at the tourist-traffic places further downtown.
Need a flat changes, they did it 20 minutes for $13 and were really cool about it. It's pretty spartan but it's a go-to place on the UWS for me
- R O.
Really great bike shop right near Central Park. Very skilled guys, very reasonable, always helpful. A gem of a store!
- Maryann Q.
I have over the years been to virtually every bike shop on the Upper West Side; Innovations is now my go to place. Full disclosure: they are close to where...
- Scott T.