I thought I would post on here, (and possibly bikeradar where Dave also gets quite a slating though that thread is quite old now), to share my experience and views reagrding the shop, because as I have read somewhere ealier on one of these forums, you never really hear from the people that have a positive experience, so hear goes.
I'm a mountain biker and I give my bike a fair amount of abuse, I still can't believe after all the drops onto rocks and crashes that my wheels aren't buckled, but no they both spin true and buckle free, I guess thats a testament to a high quality hand built wheels. (Dave Hinde didn't build my wheel originally)
I have recently changed my front forks and required the hub changing from a standard QR to a 15mm through axle hub. I have always been keen to relace and ultimately true my own wheels, but before shelling out for all the equipment I wanted to see just how hard it is to first lace the wheel up correctly.
Knowing I would still need the wheel truing and the spokes properly tensioned I sat down on the internet and started my search for wheel builders as I didn't really fancy the town bike shop to have a crack at it, I know thats maybe a stupid comment but if you don't feel comfortable with something...!!!
I've just moved back from abroad and didn't know of anywhere i'd feel happy to get my wheel done a part from driving all the way down to Cannock Chase. I live in Northwich and was more than surprised when I found Dave Hinde on the web advertising hand built wheels. I drove over to the shop and spoke to the lads, (three of them), in the shop, told them exactly what I wanted, that I wanted to have a go at changing out the hub and relacing the wheel but for them to true and tension it properly and would that be a problem, they were happy with me to have a go and even offered advice. It was later when talking to my mate, who pointed out all the bad reviews, that I got slightly worried. But my gut feeling was good and I decided to give them the benefit of the doubt.
I changed out the hub and relaced my wheel and started to put tension on the wheel and took it back to the shop, where I was greeted by a different bloke.
I can imagine this fella might get some peoples back up! I must stress he wasn't rude at all but when I explained that I'd changed the hub and relaced my wheel he didn't say too much, the look on his face said enough. lol
He took the wheel off me had a look at both sides and commented that at least I had laced it correctly! He then spun the wheel in his hands and said that actually it was pretty good, one of the better ones they get.
He answered all my questions concisely and offered advice, exactly what you want from someone!!! I just don't think he suffers fools or the ignorant and I guess that upsets some people.
I have just picked my wheel up, done by next day, and it seems spot on! I guess I will only find out just how good it is once I hit the trails, but if I don't post on here again then take it that it's as good as my original wheel or better.
I can't comment on anyone else experiences with the shop, but as far as I am concerned they did exactly what they say on the tin, were friendly, prompt service and great valve for money, I highly recommend them!