Was it worth coming to this site?

If you plan to buy a piece of cycling gear soon and you found it worthwhile spending time on this site, there’s an easy way to save yourself some money while supporting In The Know Cycling at the same time.  Simply buy your cycling gear through one of the links to the recommended stores shown in red in the reviews or in the right hand sidebar on each of the site’s pages.  These authorized stores offer the best prices and current inventory from the 100 or so international, regional and national stores I track for the products I’ve evaluated and recommended and have strong customer satisfaction records.


Each time you buy something at some of the stores you link to from this site, a small amount comes back to us for referring you.  I say ‘some’ and not ‘all’ stores because we link you to those that have the best prices, inventory, service and satisfaction whether we have an affiliate agreement with them or not.  It doesn’t cost you anything more to do it this way and probably costs you less since the stores and prices are regularly updated to link you to good stores with the lowest current prices.  Think of it as an unbiased, personal cycling gear shopper that reaches far and wide to find the best deals from great stores rather than an automated price comparison tool searching the same half dozen stores for something that sounds like what you are looking for.


You can also support the site by making a contribution here using your credit card or Paypal account. Thank you.


What’s it like buying from an online cycling store?

If you haven’t done it before or recently, ordering from a quality online cycling store is similar to buying products from any specialty online retailer you may have experience with.  It’s a growing and increasingly accepted way for both the cycling enthusiast and major brands to do business.


Online stores get products to you as fast and often faster than many bike shops which nowadays carry less inventory on high performance, low turnover gear and have to order it through a distributor.  As authorized retailers, the biggest online stores do large volumes and have better price and service leverage working directly with cycling companies than do the smaller shops.  The online retailers I recommend have strong customer service records and will handle returns or warranty issues quickly and without a lot of back and forth.  I check them against various consumer rating services.  If they don’t rate extremely well, I don’t list them.


The larger online cycling stores will ship to you wherever you are, usually within the week and often for free on purchases for the amount of most of the gear I review.  Shipments coming out of the UK or Europe into the US don’t charge the taxes you would incur buying products from a physical store.


In addition to the online stores that focus on cycling products, I occasionally post links for recommended products to eBay and Amazon when they have the best prices through highly rated vendors (99.5%+ ratings).  If you are planning to buy from either one of these sources, please go through the links provided on this site the day you plan to buy as they don’t provide a referral fee otherwise.  And when you buy anything at all through this link to Amazon, you also support the site.


You can read my review of the best online stores here.


Thank you and be sure to share any feedback you have below, good or bad, about any of the stores we link to.




  • Peter, Thanks for the feedback. Nice birthday present. Here’s to your health and ability to buy many more such presents!

    Nothing to report about Shimano’s new Di2 groupset or wheels yet. Only the 9070 mechanical groupset has been released. What I’ve heard is that it’s not worth the upgrade. The new Di2 version is supposed to have some added software bells and whistles and lower profile shifters with slightly louder clicks when you change gears but this doesn’t sound like it’s earth shattering change. The new Dura Ace Di2 and wheels are not supposed to be in stores until the spring so I won’t have anything to say probably until the beginning of the summer. This will be Shimano’s first shot at anything beyond the low profile disc wheels they are making now. Those are really clunkers. I’m hoping to be pleasantly surprised but frankly not expecting too much from the C40 discs.

    If you are going all out with a Ti bike and Dura Ace Di2 quality groupset, I’d get a wheelset at the top of the line too. I’m a big fan of the ENVE 3.4 disc brake set. It’s comparable in depth and width with the upcoming DA C40. The review is in the same post as the one that reviewed the Zipp 30 Course


  • What about a pair of handbuilt wheels? In my experience you can get a great wheel, specifically designed around your needs and budget, often much cheaper than stock wheel sets.

    • Pete, Perhaps so; perhaps not. I have no way to evaluate how your experience with custom-built wheels would translate to others or compare that experience to standard-built wheels. And if you can’t compare, you can’t say one is a great wheel while another is a less than great wheel. Most people also don’t know their performance needs in a measurable or comparable enough way to specify the wheels they want (vs. the specs they want). Cheaper vs. more expensive is also hard to determine.

      Note that most carbon and high priced alloy wheels are also built by hand but to a performance, component and manufacturing process set of standards rather than a customer’s specification. I wrote more about beliefs around “hand-built” vs. “factory-built”, which I think is a false dichotomy and largely a out-of-date carryover from an earlier era of wheel building, in this post Steve

  • hi steve. this is an FYI re the Garmin Edge 520 i bought 10 mos ago on a recommendation from your blog. i started having software problems with my unit about 4 wks ago. software version 11.10 (this seemed to be important to Garmin Support). symptoms were ‘speed’ displayed on head unit but not ‘distance’ (just a constant 0); ‘autopause’ stopped working; i could no longer ‘save’ or ‘discard’ completed rides (the ‘progress wheel’ just kept turning and i had to shut the unit down) and i could no longer access any ‘history’; ‘activity profiles’ no longer displayed as set up (certain screens would not display despite being ‘enabled’ in the set-up process). Garmin did send me RMA info after some quick troubleshooting emails and fortunately it looks like i’ll get a new unit, so i have no complaints about their service or support. the problems started gradually from aggravations to completely disrupting my rides and caused confusion trying to figure out what was happening

    just writing to inform you because i know you’re pretty conscientious about passing info to your readers. i also know you get a lot of these messages so pardon if you really can’t use this info.

    dave sanders

  • Wondering if anyone can give me a recommendation. I am thinking of taking advantage of Enve’s buy back offer. I own a 4 year old set of Reynold Assault wheels. I live west of Boston – rolling hills. I average about 17.5. Wish I was faster on the hills. Which Enve wheelset would you recommend? Will I see a noticeable difference? Riding a Stork F3 with Ultegra.

    • Jonathan, Take a look at my post on the ENVE 3.4 here and the 4.5 here. Both are put into context in this review of all-around wheels here.

      I too live west of Boston (between 128 and 495), ride the Harvard hills, ride at about your speed, and have owned the Assault and two ENVE wheels. You will notice a difference. The 3.4s are outstanding in those hills but not as fast on the flats and rollers. The 4.5s are faster on the flats and rollers and good on the hills, just not as noticeably light than the 3.4s. Both will be better on the hills and flats than the Assault. It’s a tough choice but if you plan to spend a lot of time climbing hills and steeper mountain passes in VT, NH and elsewhere, I’d recommend the 3.4s. If it’s just an occasional thing and the hills you ride are more rolling or short than mountainous and miles long, I’d go with the 4.5s. Better training can do a lot more to improve your hill climbing than wheelset choice.

      If you do plan to go forward with the trade-in offer through and want to support the work we do at the site, you can do so through this link to ENVE Upgrade Program. Steve

  • Looking for the group to provide me recommendations on sunglasses that have good optics, UV protection (a must), and have large eye coverage.

    I looked at Oakley’s, POC, Smith, etc. and don’t want to spend that type of money.

    Does anyone have any recommendations for moderately priced sunglasses?

    • Steve, I’ve got a review of sunglasses coming out soon. I’ve found you get what you pay for. But for only $100-$150 more, you get a lot better options, which is hard to say for a lot of cycling gear. Follow the site or check back in a week or so for the review. Steve

  • Hello Steve,
    I am looking to upgrade my road bike to etap gears. although i like the SRAM due to the “double tap”, I am also considering the Shimano Ultegra R8050 Di2. However, i do not know if it will fit on my 2013 Orbea frame. What should i check to make sure that these new components will fit?

    Also, i hate cables. The less, the better. even with disc brake, i still need the cables, correct?
    PS: I wish there is a information support page… rather than posting like this. Thanks

    • Khoi Chu, I don’t know why the Shimano wouldn’t fit. Depending on the model, I recall the Orbea Orca frame and others had external cable routing. If you have internal cable mounting, you may need to run some of it externally but I’d check with a shop technician to be sure. If you go eTap, you should also have no problem. And yes, you will always have at least brake cables whether the groupset is electronic or mechanical, wired or wireless shifting, rim brake or disc brake.

      You can read more about the choices between groupsets and find the best prices on all groupsets in my post here. Steve

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