Escape Bike Shop BLOG

  • Staff Picks - what we are loving right now

    Posted on December 5, 2018.

    Here's a quick run down of what we're lovin' in store right now in the way of all things bike... A Q&A across the categories - here are a few of our favourite things (and some Julie Andrews).


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    Fave kids bike? Got to be the GT race bmxs we have in - looks like fast fun at the pump track (though I'm more likely to end up in A&E).

    Best MTB? Rocky Mountain Instinct BC - great colour!!! Love the look and ride of this bike and it doesn't get a super silly price tag...



    Screen Shot 2018-12-05 at 16.04.31Roadie? Specialized Roubaix does it for me. Who can argue with carbon, suspension and disc brakes...

    Other? Santa Cruz still ooze class and must be the ultimate custom build start point for me.




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    Fave Kids bike? Whyte 403 - Great spec for the money with an air fork and proper disc brakes too! It's for the kids yeah!



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    MTB? The G-170s of course! Because you're worth it. 10 out of 10 in MBR this month and I've got one!

    Road? The specialized Tarmac looks a great deal right now - we've got it reduced down to £1099 in store, so it's a great way to get a high spec carbon road bike and get some miles in.



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    Other? Nitro Circus Scooters are super cool and Paul looks good in the helmet...


    Best kids bike? I love the look of the balance bikes, wish we had them when we were kids, or that they made adults versions too?!

    Fave MTB in store? Loving the Specialized LEVOs right now, great fun for short fast rides, or longer rides in less time. Brilliant when you've lost a bit of fitness and need to get out more or just for a change and to keep it fun.

    Road? The Whyte Wessex is a killer bike - £2250 gets you carbon, Screen Shot 2018-12-05 at 16.11.15Ultegra and hydraulic discs. It even takes full mudguards and some decent sized tyres for dodgy roads.

    Other? Stumpy EVO is a must! Can't wait to ride our demo bike...

    Want to know what we think? Need advice on buying, trying, mending or fixing? Give us a call on 015242 41226 or drop us an email to :)

    OF COURSE WE HAVE ALL THIS AND MORE IN STORE! There's sale bikes, offer clothing and the kettle's always on!

    Here's Julie:

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  • Suspension at Escape

    Posted on November 27, 2018.

    Here at Escape we understand that the days of one or two options for your suspension have well and truly gone! Today there's many brands out there claiming to have the best suspension on the market, but how do you choose the right one? We agree, it's difficult!

    These days you need to know how much travel your bike can take, what size steerer tube you have, what size axle your wheel needs... the list goes on! Then you have the question of what brand do you go for? Do you go for the same Rockshox fork that your mate rides because they say its ace? Fox because you will automatically be as fast as your favourite pro racer (or at least you hope to be)? Sadly in this day and age there's much more to think about rather than just how cool it will look on your bike!

    So to chat all things suspension, different types of dampers, coil fork / shock or an air fork / shock and what would suit your riding the best, then pop in and have a chat over a free brew! We have access to all of the top brands, so the sky is the only limit here. If you want to get a one up on your mate then why not custom tune your new fork to get the most out of it on your bike? We can do that too!

    We have forks and shocks available from Fox, Rockshox, Cane Creak, DVO, Marzocchi, MRP, DT SWISS and other industry leaders!

    The kettle will be on, see you soon...

    fox logorockshox logo



    Posted on November 20, 2018.

    It's not always easy to choose a gift for the cyclist in your life, so why not cheat and get a voucher?!

    We do vouchers from £10 and up that can be used against any purchase in store, so take the pressure off and get your loved one a bunch of these - they'll love you for it :)

    Available online, in store or over the phone. 015242 41226.

    Click here to get to GIFT VOUCHERS


  • Custom Builds at Escape Bike Shop

    Posted on November 7, 2018.

    I thought that I'd write a post about custom builds and what goes in to putting your dream bike together here at Escape Bike Shop, to give a little insight into the process.

    Rather than focus on the fitting of each part individually, I've tried to highlight the little things, the details, things that are often overlooked or taken for granted.

    Demoing multiple bikes, scouring and pouring over specs and nights of deliberation are just the start of the journey...and once you've decided and paid your hard earned cash for a new bike, what happens next?

    Well, once ordered, delivered and checked we begin the build process; in the case of custom builds this is very involved. Here's one we did a while ago...

    This is a Santa Cruz 5010 v2, the lovely CC model in blue. This happens to be an off the peg spec straight from Jungle (Santa Cruz UK) but it gets the same treatment in our workshop as any other high end build.

    Firstly Tom lays out all the parts to ensure we've everything we need to complete the build, along with the frame which is dis-assembled ready for Invisiframe fitting.  As you can see it's just a big pile of stuff right now, but in a few hours it will be transformed into a trail eating, mile munching demon!IMG_1432

    Almost all of our Santa Cruz customers choose to have an Invisframe protection kit fitted. These kits are made from premium quality automotive vinyl and cut to suit a particular brand, model, size and type of paint finish, and will keep your bike looking like new for years!

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    It's a time consuming process, involving attention to detail and patience! Fortunately, Tom's got loads of those and secretly quite enjoys a bit of Invisi fitting!

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    Once the last bubble is out and the kit's been given a chance to dry it's time to get into the build and re-assemble the frame, making sure bearings are greased and frame alignment is spot on.

    Headset and forks first, cut to length but with enough spacers to allow some personal cockpit adjustment. (We'll trim the steerer at a later date if required free of charge). We can also look at riding position, saddle choice, handlebar width and controls, to further tweak your position and comfort on the bike.


    It's important that every component is fitted as the manufacturers intend. We use anti-seize, Loctite, fibre grip and grease where needed to make sure things move or don't move as they should!

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    As the bike is assembled, each bolt is checked for the required torque. We give every new bike a free stage 1 service too, so we can re-check everything once it's been ridden a few times.


    Tubeless is definitely the way to run your tyres. Lighter, more grip, less punctures and increased feel are just some of the reasons to do it! Don't delay - Go tubeless today!

    With the aid of a compressor, a little fairy liquid and some sealant Tom will make light work of setting your chosen wheels up tubeless. Maxxis tyres are some of our favourites and suit the trails round the Yorkshire Dales and South Lakes perfectly.

    Tom will take care to line up hub, rim and tyre decals too! This level of attention to detail is a matter of pride, and something many people will not even notice...but it's the proper way to do things, so that's what we do.

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    All hoses and cables are cut to length during assembly. Brakes always need re-bleeding and If you've got a Reverb that will too. This particular build uses a KS LEV which is cable operated. These are super reliable and a great alternative to a Reverb. It still needs routing through the frame and cable trimming though...

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    Once everything is the correct length and tied in place, theres a little delicate trimming to be done so as to not leave sharp zip tie ends sticking out.

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    Often new chains come excessively covered in packing grease/wax which although being a good lube is very sticky and attracts dust and dirt like nobody's business! We clean that off and apply a suitable chain lube instead.


    Once complete, and everything set up correctly, we'll start from the beginning again and PDI (Pre Delivery Inspection) the bike to make sure nothing has been missed and the set up is perfect. All that remains is a few pictures and to set up the suspension on collection to suit your weight and riding style. We will also run you through all the features on your bike to ensure you know exactly what's what and make any adjustments to your cockpit set up to fine tune the fit.

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    Hey presto, a fully fettled, ready to rock Santa Cruz 5010cc.

    What's your poison? Santa Cruz, Rocky Mountain, Niner? We can custom build on many different frames, don't forget it's not all mountain bikes either! Here's a beautiful Ritchey road bike we've done.


    Want to know more? Fancy a new bike or want to try a demo bike?

    Give us a call on 015242 41226 and book a demo of our Hightower LT, or speak to Paul for a custom build quote or to put together your dream bike!

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    blur highlt


    Posted on October 9, 2018.

    We’re a small close knit team here at Escape Bike Shop, here’s a bit about us, what we ride, love and hate about bikes…


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    Paul runs the shop, and trys to keep Tom out of the biscuit box…his days are spent doing all sorts - everything from staffing to ordering shiny products, custom builds, and fending off advertising calls. In between all that he gets to spend time with you lovely people discussing and advising you on your next purchase.

    Having been around the bike industry since 1999 and riding everything from single speeds, road bikes and big bouncy mountain bikes and with the occasional jaunt cycling round foreign lands for months at a time Paul can certainly give you some quality advice whatever it is you are looking for.

    Currently Rides:  An ancient Kona Unit 29 Singlespeed and the poshest hybrid in the world - a converted Ritchey 650b - 700c bastardised touring bike.

    Loves: Riding a long, long way, until he can't ride anymore- then riding some more... in rain, mud and slop until it really hurts...

    Hates: Finishing a wet, muddy ride and having to deal with all that stuff... brexit, the failure of society and the education system...


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    Tom is our workshop manager and Mechanic, he has a wealth of knowledge garnered from his years fettling bikes. He spends his days building new bikes for the shop, fixing mangled mechs and servicing forks and loves building custom spec bikes.

    Tom can help you with all your biking needs whether it be servicing advice, shopping help or technical queries - just remember, don’t try to out geek the geek!

    Currently Rides: Transition Transam 650b Hardtail MTB, Cube Litening Super HPC Road Bike, Nukeproof Mega

    Loves: Hike a bike action and long days out on the open fell. Biscuits, Cake, sweets, anything left in the kitchen going for free…Bon Jovi look a like competitions, Rambo...

    Hates: Working on dirty bikes - please wash them….


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    Arawn - is from a land of rich cultural heritage and dragons, daffodils, leeks and sheep - which we remind him of pretty much constantly... He updates our website and does a bit of everything - booking in stock and selling stuff... Arawn has been around bike shops a fair while and has had everything from DH bikes to BMX and road bikes so can help you out with anything from clothing and equipment advice to setting up your forks and shocks.

    Currently Rides: Whyte G-170 and a collection of rusty old 70s classics.

    Loves: sheep, cake...

    Hates: Tuesday mornings



    Matthew is one of the owners and helps out in the shop from time to time. He loves bikes and rides fast everywhere. If you ever come across a blinged out Santa Cruz out on the trails it’s probably him, have a chat and talk bikes - just don’t try and beat him downhill…or uphill.

    Currently Rides: Tricked out Santa Cruz Hightower LT with Santa Cruz Reserve wheels, Specialized Turbo Levo, Wilier Zero 7.

  • Retail is detail...

    Posted on November 24, 2017.

    Retail is detail - but maybe these days that is not enough...

    We do our utmost to keep the shop looking fresh, clean, inviting; with well displayed stock, current products and some sale bargains. Experienced staff, trained mechanics and an ingrained love of all things bike are what drive the shop on... Check out our Meet the team blog here. Or what we do each day here.

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    These days though it's often not quite enough to keep customers from the lure of internet pricing and almost instant delivery times.

    I get it, I really do. I know it’s difficult to part with your hard earned cash these day, it's a difficult time, money is tight and you want the best for your money - I do too! But I also want bike shops to continue to exist, I love working in this industry and the characters and great friends that do too.

    So, give us a chance.

    You want that shiny stuff, but XYZ has it cheaper online? Give me a call, pop in to the shop and just ask... If we can we will, if not we'll get as close as we can - just ask - give us a chance to keep it local and keep bike shops open! Hell, we'll even make you a brew - the banter and p*** taking is for free...

    Don't be shy - if we can price match we will - and if we can't we'll be honest and tell you why! It won’t always be yes, but we’ll do our best.

    Our aim is to deliver the best service we possibly can. The most honest advice, educated opinion, best products and a coffee and a laugh too!

    Give us a shout next time you're shopping - Ron makes a pretty good brew.

    Looking forward to seeing you in store soon!

    Thanks for your continued custom and support - Paul



  • "Hello, my name's Paul and I'm an addict"

    Posted on March 24, 2017.

    It's one of those inevitable things, it's going to happen, you just don't know where, you don't know when, but it will happen...

    Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 15.00.53're going along, content in your own world, pottering round your regular bike shop haunts, knowing your fleet is complete and correct: MTB - check, Full-sus Enduro MTB - check, nice road bike (discs of course), winter hack, old school BMX for messing about at the track with the kids, maybe even an occasionally ridden singlespeed lurks in the corner of the garage next to the fatbike? But...then you overhear a snippet of conversation in the bike shop, or glimpse a press release and that's it, it happens.

    You fall off the wagon!

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    Long forgotten promises of "no more bikes", "this is the last one", "I don't need any more" fall by the wayside as you descend the slippery slope once more.

    What follows is an intense need for information, a clamouring for more pictures, technical information, geometry details, release dates etc. You scour the internet, bombard your go-to-guy in the bike shop, spend countless hours on forums (even though you hate them) to piece together every shred of information as you compile the spec or breakdown the model variations to find the one that's next. The forever bike, the holy grail of bikes...

    You hate yourself; disappointed again at your lack of will power as you eye the faces of your loved one's sideways looks and skulk off to the shed clutching research for hours on end.

    It continues, for weeks...

    The need never goes away, it's gnawing at your head and inside you the whole time. Distracted, you battle your way through the working week, with sneaky research when you can to get your fix. Tired, anxious, vague and disjointed you stumble on, muttering head tube angles as you try to carry on with your broken life...

    Finally there's a peak - relief after an intense and desperate session where you've been virtually uncontactable by the people outside of your world for what seems like months.

    The sweats, worrying and sleepless nights can finally stop.

    It's decided. Bought and paid for; been ridden.  It's good, very good, maybe even a forever bike?

    Until the next time...

    Someone please help me!

    Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 15.05.45


    The curse of bike shop staff everywhere - surrounded by shiny all day long, it's hard to stay on the wagon!

    My name's Paul and I'm a bike addict.

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  • How deep is your gurn...?

    Posted on March 8, 2017.

    Faced with my easy 5 mile commute at 7.30 in the morning I'm normally either half asleep and can't be arsed or busy dealing with rain/sleet/ice/builders vans/muddy roads so don't give riding a great deal of thought. This morning was different though...

    I set off feeling lazy and sleepy straight uphill out of the village and something clicked. It wasn't my ageing knees or cyclist's spine (before you say it) it was a switch in my head!

    Boom! It was like a gun going off - I charged up, flat out, full effort, interval style, changing gear only when absolutely necessary before a brief recovery and the next slope or short uphill and pretty much repeating this all the way to work. Why? I have no idea, I just did.

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    Now, having owned singlespeed mountain bikes for years I'm no stranger to gurning my way uphill on or off road. There's something strangely satisfying about beasting yourself up hill and trying to stay on top of the gear, pulling your best gurning face whilst your legs are in lactic acid shock and your heart is trying to burst out of your chest - or is it just me?

    Rhetorical question, I know it's not just me - there are other like minded, weird souls out there, other cyclists, just like you!

    One minute you are bimbling along the prom enjoying the sunshine and the next it's flat out walker/family slalom, racing your mate/partner whilst trying not to case it into a group of geriatric twitchers; or a casual group ride that turns into a flat out sprint between gates for absolutely no reason that ends with a gurning sweaty mess as you push on.

    Even those without a competitive nature will occasionally find the inclination to gurn up a random hill, just to see what happens...

    How deep is your gurn? This is a question you probably haven't asked yourself before (!) and what it means to me is just how far I'll push on, how much further i'll get up that hill or where in the group sprint to the pub I'll come. No-one else cares, it's just for fun and only for my own satisfaction. With full on, flat-out effort, gurn face for good measure:)


    Free Exercise  - that's the ride to work on any day; it comes with a free buzz as you coast into work with fizzing muscles and a smile on your face realising that you've just saved yourself a gym workout.

    Bikes are brilliant aren't they...?

    'til next time...Paul


  • It's just riding bikes...

    Posted on March 3, 2017.

    A ranty blog about random bike related things. The opinions expressed within do not necessarily reflect those of Escape Bike Shop and may or may not cause offence/exasperation/surprise. Read on at your own risk. :)

    It's interesting working in the bike industry, we get to work with products we love and see cool stuff as it develops and comes to market...

    Recently though, it strikes me that much the same as fashion, things seem to come round in cycles (sorry)... The eighties perm hasn't quite made it back yet (fortunately) but the ripped jeans, neon clothing and Ra-ra skirts have all been here before...


    The point of my ramblings is this: A host of press releases over the last few weeks featuring spy shots of suspension forks for road, sorry - gravel bikes - and bikes being made to multi task and be jack-of-all-trades made me think "we've been here before". Doesn't anyone else remember these? Or is it just us old school, bike shop workers?


    The was a whole host of roadie suspension forks before...they are just better now! The Specialized Roubaix is a great example with "Future Shock" suspension that actually does work - and is possibly the most comfortable bike I've ever ridden...

    Then I got to thinking about types of bikes and the irrelevance of it all...

    Do everything bikes? We all had them when we were kids - didn't we?

    Didn't we used to just ride bikes? It didn't matter - and we didn't know what their intended use was, we just rode bikes up and down the street, off road, up the woods and fired ourselves off sketchy home built ramps no matter what wheel size, with drop bars, on choppers, or bmx, or kid's bikes with bar brakes (remember those?) without ever a thought to drop our seatpost or whether our tyres were tubeless or not. I guess that was the benefit of being kid's - it was just pissing about on bikes with your mates - and, it was fun!


    Technology has rampaged on, manufacturing quality has improved and we went and got older - earned some money, then society drove us into a consumer state where we must have the newest, fastest, lightest products...

    Society's failings aside, I do love the tech - the crossover technology from aerospace, motorsports and manufacturing which allows us to ride harder for longer, more comfortably or ride more technical terrain. But maybe we have got a bit too absorbed in it all and perhaps forget sometimes that it is meant to be FUN!

    My remedy is this - get your riding buddies to dust off those 90s rigid mountain bikes in the garage with rim brakes and no suspension, or buy a clunker off fleabay and give it a fettle to make it safe-ish...

    Go ride them, on mass - your whole group - there is nothing quite like the feeling of riding that (inappropriate) bike on your regular MTB trails or in friends field with a sketchy ramp, a bbq and a few beers or a group of mates racing bikes on a home made slalom'll all be on piles of crap with rubbish brakes and ripped saddles as you joust each other off, see who can ride up "that" or down "that" and you'll have a laugh! Probably best not to do this though...

    bmx flames

    Yes, buy in to the tech. (it keeps me employed for a start)

    Yes, get in to new products - there's some amazing developments happening!

    Yes, have a fancy road/Mountain/gravel bike.

    Yes, do get involved in events.

    But most of all have fun - remember - it's just riding bikes!

    I probably could go off on many a tangent for days on end, I'll save the drugs in cycling for next time...

    'til then.





  • What we do...

    Posted on February 23, 2017.

    love bikes

    Live, sleep, work, play, ride, eat - everything bike related - that's what we do!

    It doesn't matter what it is, mountain bike, E-bike, road, hybrid, tandem, trike, ice-cream wagon, kids bike or touring fat-bike with trailer - it's all bikes and bike riding and that's all good!

    It's a lifestyle choice working in the bike business, it's something that seems to choose you rather than you choosing it. One day you're out riding your bike after school/Uni/work and the next thing you know it's 10 (or 20!) years later and 3+ bike shop jobs on and it's like - WOW - how did that happen!?

    The years of tinkering in workshops, making stuff work and coming across weird and wonderful rare parts or bikes only prove to keep it interesting; and builds a knowledge base to equip you for the next 10 years of constantly changing standards, business killing online pricing and retail ups and downs that seem to have no explanation or key drivers or just leave you stumped and excited to find a way...

    That's what we do - find a way to fix your bike, get you that part that no-one else can, keep stock of consumables that other shops don't, get you on that demo bike, get excited about selling a kids bike, love new products, find out how it works and go ride it!

    We love the buzz of cycling events - demo rides, ladies maintenance courses, our new Sportive, supporting the PMBA Enduro series, helping out with local Breeze rides and the Coast to Coast in a day; we're always planning the next event and thinking of ways to get more people involved in cycling and loving bikes as much as we do.

    Here at the shop we work hard to bring you the best brands and variety of stock we can - because it's what we would want as a customer.

    We have Santa Cruz, Wilier, Whyte and Specialized bikes in stock - all brands we would (and do) actually buy and ride ourselves! Want something different? This is not an exhaustive list and we often have access to other desirable brands like NS, Ragley, Kinesis, DMR, Pivot and others - ask!

    If it's no good, it doesn't get room in the shop...We only stock the products we want too, that we think are good value and top performers in their field.

    It's not all bikes - Endura forms the mainstay of our clothing lines and produce excellent performing, great value technical garments that will make your riding more comfortable and enjoyable. Alongside Endura brands like LEATT, Mavic, RaceFace and Santa Cruz give a wide range of choice no matter what your discipline.

    Need parts? We keep a huge selection of brakes, derailleurs, bearings and all manner of other bits and pieces in stock. If we don't have it we can get it - and we'll try our best to find a way to get you back on your bike and be competitive on price too. Don't be shy - if we can price match we will - and if we can't we'll be honest and tell you why!

    So what is it we do on a daily basis?

    Try to be the best bike shop in the local area/world!

    - We want you to walk in the door and say "oh, wow!"

    That 's what drives us, that and delivering the best service we possibly can. The most honest advice, educated opinion, best products and a coffee and a laugh too!

    From tubes to custom carbon mountain bikes or round the world tours we're happy to help you with it all and look forward to welcoming you in to the store soon!

    New to Escape? Pop in for a brew and a wander round. You're always welcome!

    Got feedback? Would like to see something different in store?

    Give Paul a ring on 015242 41226 or email

    Thanks for your continued custom and support - Paul





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