The Pedal Pusher (or, bike shops that don’t suck)

Tuesday night I drove over to the Pedal Pusher to pick up a rear rack for the bike. After talking to a super nice guy named Jim about my needs, bike, etc., we decided on a beefy 40lb rack. After the requisite exchange of currency I brought it home and proceeded to curse the rack, my bike and anything else within earshot. It just didn’t fit – the screws didn’t fit the eyelets, the mounting rails wouldn’t clear the brakes, and I had to remove the reflector bracket just to get the thing level.

Today I took it back. And brought the bike with me. Jim and Jeff concurred that the rack just wasn’t going to work without significant modification. I pulled another rack off the, err, rack and we all eyeballed it on the bike. Apparently, old Schwinn bicycles used a different size mounting eyelet than the rest of the world. We discussed reaming out the mounting holes, how to avoid hitting the brakes, and who was going to get the beer. Then they did everything for me. Those two attacked that rack and had it on the bike within a 30 minutes, including reaming out the holes on the back. No charge for the installation. Even swap on the racks. But this isn’t the first time they’ve treated me this way.

My very first visit to the Pedal Pusher was a quest for a replacement front fork. They had a used one at a very reasonable price, but the crown race seat was a different size. So they ordered me a new head set. I seriously can’t understand how they made any money on the transaction. Subsequent visits have brought me the same sort of bliss. Friendly, knowledgeable, personal attention from some top notch bike guys. They’ll never get rid of me at this rate, no matter how annoying I am.

Customer for life. Or at least as long as I live here. New frame? Ordering it from them. Parts? Them. Tools? You guessed it.

So if you’re in the Harrisburg area and find yourself in need of a bike shop:

The Pedal Pusher

3798 Walnut St
Harrisburg, PA

Phone: (717) 652-7760

They don’t appear to have a web presence or even an email address, so pick up the damn phone or stop by. I’m bringing beer the next time.

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5 Responses to The Pedal Pusher (or, bike shops that don’t suck)

  1. Mark Wilkins says:

    +1 for Pedal Pusher. They’ve helped me out of a couple jams.

    Not long afer I put my fixed-gear together, I stripped the threads on the rear axle (no QR). I ended up at PP and they guy (I’m sure it was Jim) rummaged through a big box of hub parts until he found an axle and nuts that would do the trick. I made it out of there for a couple bucks.

    Then, last Spring, a mishap (read: technical incompetence on my part) caused the chain to break on my Rambouillet. I was in front of Denny’s on Carlisle Pk. when it happened. The chain then snagged the rear der. Since I was still pedaling when it happened, the der. spun around and got caught in the rear spokes. The torque bent the rear der. hanger, tweaked a couple spokes, and crumpled my rear fender. The der. was toast (it snapped in two), but my bigger concern was the hanger.

    I bought a new rear der., but needed to get the hanger aligned. I called around, but nobody seemed to be able to have the time to straighten it (Holmes, Mountainside, World Cup were all too busy, or too expensive). Took it over to PP over lunch one day, and they straightened it out in no time.

    Sorry…a bit wordy…but defintely a good experience with Pedal Pusher.

    p.s. thank goodness the frame/hanger was steel!


  2. admin says:

    Steel for the win!

    Thanks for stopping by, Mark. I’ve had bad experiences with one of the other three shops you mentioned, too. Won’t be going back.

    P.S. I’m still hunting for the fixie. Thanks again for your help with that.

  3. Jon says:

    The Pedal Pusher Bike Shop has a website now, although no e-mail address at this point. You can take a look at it here:

  4. the Sloth says:

    Sweet! Thanks for the update, Jon.

  5. Barry says:

    Pedal Pusher is one of those “old school work ethic, New School product and expertise” kind of shops. They are very patient, very understanding and will truly go out of their way to help you. Thanks to all who work there. I bought my first real mountain bike, a cannondale super V, from them in 2004 and have known them a long time. They also had one of their guys build my wheel set over 10 years ago and it has never needed a spoke tightened or any work done to it!