The old sign.

Roy’s Sheepshead Bicycle Shop (2679 Coney Island Avenue) put up a new sign recently, giving a more modern look to the longtime storefront, which first opened in 1931.

News like this is always mixed in my book. On the one hand, investments like this mean the business owner is looking to stay around a while longer – and with a staple like Roy’s, that’s a great thing. On the other hand, Roy’s old sign was an awesome relic of a bygone era, and had a lot of kitsch value.

Regardless, with bike lanes installed and public attitudes shifting, we stand at the dawn of a new bicycle era, and Roy’s Sheepshead Bicycle Shop – one of the city’s oldest and most respected cycling establishments – is retooling to fit the times. Good for them.

By the way, Robert Fernandez, who took the photo, pointed out that some of the trappings of the old school Roy’s remains. And we hope they keep it that way.

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  • http://www.njluxurymotors.com Arthur Borko

    Do one of those trappings include the front door always being blockaded and needing to enter through the alley as if you’re buying drugs?

    • Anonymous

      i could never understand that… I felt like an idiot trying to open up those gated front doors…. only to find a little sign that said Entrance in back lol

      I turned in to a http://img.tfd.com/wn/35/669F6-sucker.jpg upon trying to get in threw doors. LOL

    • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

      Been that way almost forever. I believe that at one time one could enter through the front door. Then they were doing some renovation in the early seventies and you have to go through the side. And they never opened the front again.

      They don’t like to answer the question as to WHY!

    • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

      Been that way almost forever. I believe that at one time one could enter through the front door. Then they were doing some renovation in the early seventies and you have to go through the side. And they never opened the front again.

      They don’t like to answer the question as to WHY!

    • Cabbie

      i buy all my juicing goods there…shhh!

    • nolastname

      It didn’t stop someone from walking away with a 4 grand bike last month.

  • Anonymous

    This place sucks.

    I was in there a few weeks ago and spent 20 minutes walking around and not one sales person came over to see if I needed help, they just stood around taking to other more “professional” bikers. There was also a kid that was looking for a lock, when he asked how the one that you can set your own combination worked, he was told you have to buy it first before they would explain.

    If you are not a super biker they really do not want to talk to you.

    • Anonymous

      I do a lot of business with them. Once you get hold of a salesperson and let them know what you want, they happen to be pretty good. Yes, there is a back section with all the expensive bikes, but a majority of their business is for the average biker. But I do know what you mean. Two weeks ago I went there with my son who needed a few small items and the place was a madhouse. The person behind the counter who helped him was very abrupt but by the time my son paid for the items, she apologized for her attitude.

      • Anonymous

        I think that woman is just a cashier, not really a salesperson at all. That’s the impression I got from her the many times I’ve shopped there. She leaves all the Q&A for the guys walking around.

    • Anonymous

      It definitely pays to do your research before you shop there. I check ratings & reviews & prices of bike accessories (e.g. Amazon) so I know what I’m looking for. Some of the guys are forthcoming with information but some just want to sell you anything they can get you to buy. The only person I would ask to do a bike adjustment is the dad (I think his name is Alan or something like that) because he gets it right and the others are all trial and error.

      • Anonymous

        For everyday bikes the father (owner) is fine.Alan is the son and he’s knowledgable about everything in the store.For high end stuff, see Ilya.
        Last time i was in there there were at least 5 new sales people.
        Roy’s is riding high on the renewed interest in cycling.

        • nolastname

          Yeah, now if he could get his customers to NOT test ride on the sidewalk.
          Someday someone will get clipped by one of his customers and they will own the business after a law suit. People have been complaining about this practice for years. Maybe that’s why he does not use the front door. Aside from being over priced I like to see some competition for them. Anyone try the place on Ave U and Bedford?

  • http://twitter.com/nicktherat Nick the Rat

    i gotto pick up a bike soon. went a few rounds around marine park on a friends bike and enjoyed it :)

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

    The sign they just replace is far from the original. I remember two earlier signs.

    • Anonymous

      and i bet you have pictures : )

      • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

        I did, but I can’t find them. I lost hundreds of pictures I took in the late seventies and early eighties. So many of the places I photographed are gone now.

        • Anonymous

          ouch

    • Cabbie

      they had a fire there a bunch of years ago and the sign melted – it was still readable and looked really cool – they should have kept it up.

      • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

        I remember the fire, and the melted sign. They closed for “repairs’, and promised that the place would be even better when they reopened. Looked almost the same to me afterward, but that was when I first started feeling bad vibes from some of the people who worked there.

        • Cabbie

          put a “chain tattoo” from your greasy chain on your calf before you go in – that’s the secret for good service. don’t tell anyone else!

          • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

            There was definitely the beginnings of elite mentality. They were starting to look down on people who didn’t live and breathe bicycles as a lifestyle.

          • Cabbie

            next time, try what I told you, and let me know how it works.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

    The sign they just replace is far from the original. I remember two earlier signs.