P38 Quality, Price, and Service?

Discussion in 'Recumbent bicycles' started by Stratrider, Apr 25, 2003.

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  1. Freewheeling

    Freewheeling Guest

    Tom:

    "For what it is worth, Le Quan happens to be Tim Brummer's wife."

    Well, she'd have to be wouldn't she? I mean, how else would she get the job?

    --
    --Scott [email protected] Cut the "tail" to send email.

    "Tom Sherman" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >
    > Michael Devenis wrote:
    > >
    > > Cletus, you "forgot" to mention the amazingly rude woman who handles the phones and who refuses
    > > to answer customer questions as they are " a waste of our time". I own a P-38 and love it, but
    > > honesty compells me to bring up the unhappy fact of this Le Quan person's unpleasent and frankly
    > > anti-customer attitudes. After all, she is the one who will answer the phone when the poor
    > > customer calls for advice or assistance.
    >
    > For what it is worth, Le Quan happens to be Tim Brummer's wife.
    >
    > Tom Sherman - Various HPV's Quad Cities USA (Illinois side)
     


  2. Jeff Wills

    Jeff Wills Guest

    "Freewheeling" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Cletus:
    >
    > I've been hearing about this woman for as long as I've been using ARBR. It's not as though they
    > don't have a responsibility to place someone reasonable, with decent people skills, in customer
    > relations. And it's not as though there aren't other good bikes around. Once you've *bought* the
    > bike, you pretty much *have* to put up with her. But since you don't really *have* to put your tit
    > in that ringer...
    >

    Scott, do you have any idea how big Lightning really is? It's 4 people, maybe 5 if things are really
    busy. I'd bet that LeQuan is "customer relations" by default- there's no money to hire someone for
    even minimum wage.

    Perhaps your experiences with LeQuan have been negative, but in my 12 years of Lightning ownership,
    I haven't been let down hard enough to give up the bike totally. There's been annoyances (Moulton
    tires, wear on the chain pulleys, a jammed shock fork) and outright failures (I broke the frame
    after about 15,000 miles), but in its time, the Lightning was *the* high performance recumbent.
    There may be equivalent bikes *now*, but there was no equal when I bought mine.

    The frame break was interesting: Tim warned me that it might occur. I ride an XL frame (I'm
    6-foot-4, 210+ pounds) and mine was an earlier version, with no reinforcing between the two top
    tubes. As I said, it had endured many thousands of hard riding (commuting, touring, even off-road),
    with few complaints. On the way home work one day, it started making a scratching noise under
    pedaling pressure. I looked down to see that the right top tube had seperated from the headtube. It
    was still ridable, and I made it home without incident.

    I stripped the bike, shipped it to Lightning, and got it back a couple weeks later with a new top
    tube, a gusset between the top tubes, and a new paint job. I've still got it and ride it
    occasionally- it's no longer my primary bike (I'm wearing out- the bike's fine.)

    In it's own way, Lightning is like Rivendell Bicycles in the upright world. They do things their
    way, for their reasons, to fulfill their vision. This is apt to cause friction with people who don't
    agree with them. There's many choices in recumbent bikes nowadays- if you don't like a Lightning,
    get something else.

    Jeff Wills

    P.S. In the interests of full disclosure: I bought my Lightnings direct from the company (I used to
    live 40 miles from the shop), my wife and I appear in the Lightning promotional video, Tim
    Brummer came to our wedding, and we now ride Tour Easys for reasons not related to Lightning's
    qualities as a company. So there. Nyahh...
     
  3. Dj Blag

    Dj Blag Guest

    You just need to make the u-turns at a higher rate of speed, maybe on a banked track?? ;-{)) Chas
     
  4. Freewheeling

    Freewheeling Guest

    Well, they never have seemed to seek volume. I like the bike, and almost bought one, but the Rex
    was less money and it just felt easier to ride in town. I need to get out this season some time.
    Maybe tomorrow.

    --
    --Scott [email protected] Cut the "tail" to send email.

    "Jeff Wills" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "Freewheeling" <email_at[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > > Cletus:
    > >
    > > I've been hearing about this woman for as long as I've been using ARBR. It's not as though they
    > > don't have a responsibility to place someone reasonable, with decent people skills, in customer
    > > relations. And it's
    not
    > > as though there aren't other good bikes around. Once you've *bought*
    the
    > > bike, you pretty much *have* to put up with her. But since you don't
    really
    > > *have* to put your tit in that ringer...
    > >
    >
    > Scott, do you have any idea how big Lightning really is? It's 4 people, maybe 5 if things are
    > really busy. I'd bet that LeQuan is "customer relations" by default- there's no money to hire
    > someone for even minimum wage.
    >
    > Perhaps your experiences with LeQuan have been negative, but in my 12 years of Lightning
    > ownership, I haven't been let down hard enough to give up the bike totally. There's been
    > annoyances (Moulton tires, wear on the chain pulleys, a jammed shock fork) and outright
    > failures (I broke the frame after about 15,000 miles), but in its time, the Lightning was *the*
    > high performance recumbent. There may be equivalent bikes *now*, but there was no equal when I
    > bought mine.
    >
    > The frame break was interesting: Tim warned me that it might occur. I ride an XL frame (I'm
    > 6-foot-4, 210+ pounds) and mine was an earlier version, with no reinforcing between the two top
    > tubes. As I said, it had endured many thousands of hard riding (commuting, touring, even
    > off-road), with few complaints. On the way home work one day, it started making a scratching noise
    > under pedaling pressure. I looked down to see that the right top tube had seperated from the
    > headtube. It was still ridable, and I made it home without incident.
    >
    > I stripped the bike, shipped it to Lightning, and got it back a couple weeks later with a new top
    > tube, a gusset between the top tubes, and a new paint job. I've still got it and ride it
    > occasionally- it's no longer my primary bike (I'm wearing out- the bike's fine.)
    >
    > In it's own way, Lightning is like Rivendell Bicycles in the upright world. They do things their
    > way, for their reasons, to fulfill their vision. This is apt to cause friction with people who
    > don't agree with them. There's many choices in recumbent bikes nowadays- if you don't like a
    > Lightning, get something else.
    >
    > Jeff Wills
    >
    > P.S. In the interests of full disclosure: I bought my Lightnings direct from the company (I used
    > to live 40 miles from the shop), my wife and I appear in the Lightning promotional video, Tim
    > Brummer came to our wedding, and we now ride Tour Easys for reasons not related to
    > Lightning's qualities as a company. So there. Nyahh...
     
  5. > I have never found LeQuan to be rude. I don't think English is LeQuan's first language and you may
    > be confusing an abruptness and directness that comes from that fact as being rude.
    >
    > I say, cut her some slack. How well could you communicate if you were dumped into a foreign
    > country? I've been there. it is not easy.

    I too, have been an expatriate i.e long term resident. (Saudi Arabia, Thailand, India and Marshall
    Islands). And am no xenophobe, however I know disrespect when I hear it. And being told that
    answering customer questions is "a waste of our time" and that since I had originally bought the
    bike through my LBS "we do not have your money, he does, ask him" and thus were under no obligation
    to help me is hard to misinterpert. Also since the employee in question has been here long enough
    to speak pretty good English, I don't think that language skills were the issue. Perhaps there were
    other cultural issues at work, but if so, they would have a direct bearing upon a prospective
    customers experience with this Company.
     
  6. Jeff Wills

    Jeff Wills Guest

    "Freewheeling" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Well, they never have seemed to seek volume. I like the bike, and almost bought one, but the Rex
    > was less money and it just felt easier to ride in town. I need to get out this season some time.
    > Maybe tomorrow.
    >
    > --
    > --Scott

    Build a Ferrari in volume and you get a Fiat. :cool:

    Jeff
     
  7. John Riley

    John Riley Guest

    Is this the missing thread? Is it still missing?

    JR
     
  8. Edward Dolan

    Edward Dolan Guest

    "Freewheeling" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Well, they never have seemed to seek volume. I like the bike, and almost bought one, but the Rex
    > was less money and it just felt easier to ride in town. I need to get out this season some time.
    > Maybe tomorrow.
    >
    > --
    > --Scott

    I once gave them a check for a thousand dollars for a P-38 (as you can tell from the amount quoted
    this was quite a few years ago) based on a recent flyer that I had from them and was told that the
    price had gone up by several hundred dollars. I told them that they had my check and they could
    either ship me the bike or return the check. They returned the check. Like you said, they are not
    into volume. I spent my thousand dollars elsewhere and have never regretted it based on the bad
    things I have been told about the company (customer relations) and most specifically about "her".
    She is commonly referred to as the Tiger Lady.

    Ed Dolan - Minnesota
     
  9. Bob

    Bob Guest

    Since every one likes to pounce on Lightning, I thought I would throw in my 2 cents worth. I have
    talked to LeQuan on the phone. She does seem to be blunt but she has always answered my questions
    and mailed out anything part wise that I have needed. I have an older P38 with the Moulton wheel on
    the front. Lightning is the only place that I have been able to buy a tire and they have always been
    prompt in sending it out with no hassle. I will probably buy a new fork soon so I can go to a
    standard 20" wheel. My frame is one of the older frames, so last January, I sent it in to get the
    braces welded in and have it repainted. From the time I mailed it out to the time I got it back was
    2 weeks. The frame got here in great shape and has given me the same incredible ride it did before.
    I know the design is a little dated and there are other bikes out there as fast or faster but the
    P38 is the best climbing bent I have ever owned and since I live in the mountains, it will stay in
    my stable. Lightning's service has always been great for me and Tim always answers my emails
    promptly. As a side note, I ride a Rotator pursuit as my commuter. It also is a great bike. So for
    those checking out bikes, make sure you give them a try as well. I rode their Big wheel pursuit the
    other day (700c wheels) and it was incredible....Bob
     
  10. Jeff Wills

    Jeff Wills Guest

    [email protected] (Bob) wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Since every one likes to pounce on Lightning, I thought I would throw in my 2 cents worth. I have
    > talked to LeQuan on the phone. She does seem to be blunt but she has always answered my questions
    > and mailed out anything part wise that I have needed. I have an older P38 with the Moulton wheel
    > on the front. Lightning is the only place that I have been able to buy a tire and they have always
    > been prompt in sending it out with no hassle. I will probably buy a new fork soon so I can go to a
    > standard 20" wheel.

    FWIW: Angle Lake Cyclery stocks the Moulton tires: http://anglelake.com/ . Now that Wolber has
    handed off production to Continental and Bridgestone, there's now a choice! I have one of the
    Bridgestones on the front of my "retro" Lightning:
    http://home.pacifier.com/~jwills/Gallery/photos/photo_3.html .

    I recommend the 20" wheel swap. Get the fork built with a lot of clearance for a 1.3" or wider tire
    and convert to "V"-brakes- I found that the SRAM brakes were easily modified for a reversed-noodle
    arrangement.

    Jeff
     
  11. Zenin

    Zenin Guest

    (I'm way late on replying, but hey)

    Frank Calloway <[email protected]@earthlink.net> wrote:
    :> I love the downturned handlebars, after the geting used to it phase, I find them the most
    :> comfortable of any of my bikes I've owned. While it is a closed cockpit, I rarely bump anything,
    :> where you properly fited?
    :
    : I don't see how fitting had anything to do with it. When making *sharp* turns, such as a U-turn on
    : a two-lane road, I had to swing my knee out and around the handlebar to keep from hitting it. I
    : don't think it's physically possible to do otherwise. I guess I must make more U-turns than
    : average. :)

    Personally, I love my P-38 (and the turned down handles), but I will quickly admit this bike
    has "issues" with slow speed and slow, tight turns. Under about 5 mph the bike always is a
    split second from falling over, and yes this tends to mean sharp U-turns (which pretty much
    have to be at slow speed) are difficult (maybe even dangerous).

    That said, at speed the P-38 rides like it's on rails, which far more then makes up for
    having to do "walk" U-turns and such (I put my feet on the ground). I've had my P-38
    over 65mph with a 60lbs BoB on the back (overloaded, so what?:) downhill and it's solid
    as a rock. Without the trailer the bike feels far more like a track motorcycle then a
    bicycle at speed.

    The P-38 isn't a slow bike and actually will put up a huge fuss if you try to go slow on it.
    Yah, if you're doing enough U-turns that you'd even notice a problem the P-38 probably isn't
    the best bike for you. :)

    --
    -Zenin ([email protected]) Lightning P-38 w/B.O.B Coz Automobile=/dev/null Got 'Bent?
     
  12. Frank, are you riding another P-38? I've never been totally happy that I sold the P38-XT, as
    I suspect you suspected. ;-)) ( Sorry but I missed the start of this thread and can no
    longer find it.)

    --
    Gator Bob Siegel EasyRacers Ti Rush "Zenin" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > (I'm way late on replying, but hey)
    >
    > Frank Calloway <[email protected]@earthlink.net> wrote:
    > :> I love the downturned handlebars, after the geting used to it phase, I find them the most
    > :> comfortable of any of my bikes I've owned. While it
    is
    > :> a closed cockpit, I rarely bump anything, where you properly fited?
    > :
    > : I don't see how fitting had anything to do with it. When making *sharp* turns, such as a U-turn
    > : on a two-lane road, I had to swing my knee out
    and
    > : around the handlebar to keep from hitting it. I don't think it's physically possible to do
    > : otherwise. I guess I must make more U-turns
    than
    > : average. :)
    >
    > Personally, I love my P-38 (and the turned down handles), but I will quickly admit this bike has
    > "issues" with slow speed and slow, tight turns. Under about 5 mph the bike always is a split
    > second from falling over, and yes this tends to mean sharp U-turns (which pretty much have to be
    > at slow speed) are difficult (maybe even dangerous).
    >
    > That said, at speed the P-38 rides like it's on rails, which far more then makes up for having to
    > do "walk" U-turns and such (I put my feet on the ground). I've had my P-38 over 65mph with a 60lbs
    > BoB on the back (overloaded, so what?:) downhill and it's solid as a rock. Without the trailer
    > the bike feels far more like a track motorcycle then a bicycle at speed.
    >
    > The P-38 isn't a slow bike and actually will put up a huge fuss if you try to go slow on it. Yah,
    > if you're doing enough U-turns that you'd even notice a problem the P-38 probably isn't the best
    > bike for you. :)
    >
    > --
    > -Zenin ([email protected]) Lightning P-38 w/B.O.B Coz Automobile=/dev/null Got 'Bent?
     
  13. Mike S

    Mike S Guest

    No disrespect intended to anyone who posted previously as any poster who honestly relates their
    experience, whether or not shared by others, helps me. I have read these discussions before about
    Lightning and LeQuan. When I called Lightning I had Tim Brummer pick up and he spent about twenty
    minutes with me answering questions etc. He couldn't have been nicer. I haven't spoken with LeQuan.
    I have also ridden most of Lightning products and find them to be unique, with their own special
    characteristics (both good and bad). In many respects they remind me of companies like Rotator,
    Barcroft or Longbikes, small businesses run by people who believe that their particular design needs
    little enhancement and they produce a particular style of bikes they believe in. More power to them.
    But on the issue of business relations, what steered me away from the company (in addition to
    finding the bike(s) that fit my needs) were the comments of a number of dealers who do not carry the
    product now because they too had problems dealing with the company. Recently, at an unnamed store,
    who I knew used to carry Lightnings, we talked about the products and I mentioned what I had read on
    this newsgroup about people having problems with the company attitude. The response was "you don't
    see them here do you?" I hope the Tim Brummers of the world (and the Steve Delaires, Bill Cooks,
    Gardner Martins, Rolf Garthaus's and Greg Peeks) succeed for their products fill a niche for some of
    us and offer real variety as opposed to the humdrum upright world. But I agree with the other
    posters that a company has to earn my business, not expect it, and to the extent that a company
    doesn't want to work with me then I can find a company who does. There are enough options out there
    that I can pursue one where I feel my business is appreciated. While I can't verify if all of what
    was related previously is true, the number of similar comments suggest this is not the lament of one
    unhappy customer. Hopefully, Lightning can deal with these issues and prosper. Viva recumbency.

    Mike S. St. Louis, Mo.
     
  14. There always has been a lot of smoke about alleged bad-personality problems with Tim and LeQuan
    Brummer. My experience with Tim was fine. But where's smoke may be fire.
    --
    Gator Bob Siegel EasyRacers Ti Rush "mike s" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > No disrespect intended to anyone who posted previously as any poster who honestly relates their
    > experience, whether or not shared by others, helps me. I have read these discussions before about
    > Lightning and LeQuan.
     
  15. Joeg

    Joeg Guest

    FWIW, I have never had any issues at all with Tim or LeQuan when speaking to them on the phone with
    gratuitous questions, etc., they have been very patient and helpful.

    "Robert Siegel" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > There always has been a lot of smoke about alleged bad-personality
    problems
    > with Tim and LeQuan Brummer. My experience with Tim was fine. But where's smoke may be fire.
    > --
    > Gator Bob Siegel EasyRacers Ti Rush "mike s" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    > > No disrespect intended to anyone who posted previously as any poster who honestly relates their
    > > experience, whether or not shared by others, helps me. I have read these discussions before
    > > about Lightning and LeQuan.
     
  16. "Robert Siegel" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Frank, are you riding another P-38? I've never been totally happy that I sold the P38-XT, as I
    > suspect you suspected. ;-)) ( Sorry but I missed the start of this thread and can no longer
    > find it.)

    Nope, I'd never buy another P-38. I'm still happily riding a 2000 RANS V-Rex custom built by
    Angletech.

    Frank
     
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