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Balfe's Bikes - Kennington Rd

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Friday 15 July 2011 4.11pm
Having complained elsewhere on this forum about my local bike shops I thought I should mention a new one. Some details and pics here: (this is not my blog)

I went in today, and had a wheel trued while I waited. Service was extremely capable and friendly, and inexpensive. Several other happy customers were served while I was there. They have only just opened, and their first couple of hundred customers will get a badge which entitles them to a longterm 15% discount. (And I think all customers will get the same discount for the first month or so, while they build up a customer-base). They are so new that they do not yet seem to have a website, and they cannot yet accept credit cards, but I'm sure both will be sorted-out in due course.

338 Kennington Rd, SE11 4LD
020 7820 0028

I have no connection ... etc., and will certainly be back here if I have anything bad to say about them in future!
Friday 15 July 2011 6.04pm
This is run by a friend of mine and I know I'm biased but the owner is lovely and he loves bikes so much he gave up a well paid job to run a bike shop.

He's one of those people who can't do things in half measures and I'd trust my Beloved Brompton to him as he's someone I'd trust to do a good job. I really hope it all goes well for him.
Friday 15 July 2011 6.20pm
As a follow-up to Zoe's message: Richard clearly knows plenty about Bromptons (it was a Brompton that I took in today) and he said that his partner/mechanic Brian (who was on his day-off today) is even more experienced with them. So if you're a Brompton owner within a few miles of the Kennington Rd, you might want to check them out. (Especially if you do not want to endure Evans, and their unnecessary two-week waiting-time for Brompton parts).
Tuesday 16 August 2011 11.34am
Some friends of mine are cycling from London to South Africa for charity and were really grateful for the help they got from Balfe's Bikes:
Sunday 15 January 2012 6.03pm
I really have to disagree with the above posters, and I do it with real sadness as I really want to support a local bike shop, but I took my bike here for a service because I was having trouble with the freewheel clutch slipping. After a service, new cassette, chain and rings the problem was still there. I took it back and complained that it was still happening, and that I now don't even have the full range of gears that I had before, and while the service was friendly, I was told I was riding too hard and should 'change gear more often'!
A different bike shop later I find the clutch in the wheel is just worn and needs replacing, and they cant believe it wasn't picked up on, especially considering it was my initial complaint?
Seem like nice guys, but there's no way I'm going back there.
Monday 16 January 2012 12.15pm
I have bought a service via Groupon last week. Only 19 for a full service, so very good value if they do it right.

I'll be booking it in over the next few weeks so will put some feedback on here.
Monday 16 January 2012 3.15pm
Tried Balfe's to relace a spoke and no complaints.

If you want a really good local bike shop I can recommend South Bank Cycles on Wandsworth Road just up from Vauxhall so a bit out from SE1 but it is very good. It's run by two Persian (that's what they call themselves not Iranian) brothers who are very friendly but more importantly do great repairs and not at rip off prices. One of the brother represented Iran at the Seoul Olympics so knows his bikes and they like a chat about cycling.
Tuesday 6 March 2012 3.27pm
HI CityRider and all other users. I am the owner of Balfe's Bikes, and have only just seen the negative post. I just want to say that we would never replace a drive-train unless it shows significant wear. Often through winter free hub bodies can seize (referred to as clutch above) and may have not had anything to do with the original slipping gears. We do check these things and are quite capable but sometimes when you strip back one layer of problems another is exposed. It's not ideal nor what we want but sometimes it happens. Our prices are low and we try our best to offer a great service. Apologies to CityRider for their experience.

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