Tuesday, August 13, 2013

To catch a flea...


Upgraded my cycling helmet..

I spent some time in search of a replacement helmet for my Limar 575.
The helmet had served me very well and since I found a hairline fracture on it with later became a gaping crack, time to change.

An offer I couldn't refuse

It took me two trips to Tukang Basikal Fook Sang in Sungai Way to finally convince me to spend on a decent quality helmet.
My choice was Bell Helmet's "Muni" which is meant for commuters. And the price at RM235 was not too bad.
The ultimate goal for me, is to score a Bell Super Helmet which is twice the price. But the wait is another thing.

Accessories: you've got to have it..

The Muni is an interesting product.
You can enhance it by adding a Blackburn Design Flea 2.0 USB rechargeable front light.
There is a slot on the helmet's visor which you can mount the light.
And as a complete package, there's also a special slot for the Flea backlight.

Availability: a perennial pain..

I asked the friendly lady at Fook Sang on whether the Blackburn products are available in Malaysia.
She told me that the agent did not import the product as they need a large sales volume for it.
Way it seems, it just made the people responsible for bringing in the Bell helmets as lazy and would only want to be in the comfort zone.
I was told that its more convenient to score a set of Blackburn Fleas through on-line stores abroad.
In such a case, I support local bike stores. If they cannot supply what I want, I turn my attention to on-line shops and so far, I have some really good experience dealing with them.

The Singapore connection..

I did more research on Blackburn's website and was led to a distributor in Singapore.
They had their phone number wrong as its no longer in service and when I finally got to speak to the person in charge, I was told that they do not sell outside Singapore.
"I cannot sell to Malaysia," he said.
Asked on whether there are any leads across the causeway, his response was: "I don't know.."
I guess this is the attitude of some Singaporeans on doing business with a Malaysian. Its sad.

Blackburn's customer service, well, some Americans can be totally ignorant..

So, there I was, no leads.
I logged into Blackburn's site and contacted them.

Hello Sam,

Thank you for your recent inquiry. Below is the link for a list of our distributors.


Sincerely,

Amber Thomas
Customer Service Representative

735 Pacesetter Drive
Rantoul, IL 61866
Phone: 800-456-2355
It was hardly any help because there were no dealers from Malaysia.
So, I responded: 

Dear Amber, 

Not much help. 

"Malaysia" is not listed on your international distributor's list and your representative in Singapore isn't helpful at all.

Thank you anyway! 

Regards,

Sam 
 And Blackburn's final answer: 

Hello Sam,

If Malaysia is not listed then we don’t have a dealer in that area. I am sorry.

Sincerely,

Amber Thomas
Customer Service Representative

735 Pacesetter Drive
Rantoul, IL 61866
Phone: 800-456-2355

Oh well, Ebay it is!

Well, having gone through so many hassles, I guess my best bet would be a visit to some stores on Ebay.
They are willing to ship to Malaysia. But that said, I might just pack in this order with some other stuff from JensonUSA.com where the lights are also sold.
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