FAQ: (Frequently Asked Questions)General Bicycle Quarterly
Bicycle Quarterly is about quality bikes in the widest sense. We examine the history of cycling and present amazing old bikes, but we also test the latest bikes from the best builders. Technical articles in Bicycle Quarterly present issues such as frame geometry or tire performance that are of interest to all cyclists.
How do I submit a letter to the editor to Bicycle Quarterly?
Letters must be no longer than 500 words. They must include name and address of the writer. Submit your letters to the address here. Please note that we cannot respond individually to letters and comments.
I would like to write an article for Bicycle Quarterly.
Please contact us with a proposal. We always look for submissions, especially for the columns My Favorite Bike, Projects and Builders Speak. We cannot return contributions unless prior written arrangements are made.
Most bike magazines like everything their advertisers sell. How about you?
Most bicycle magazines are financed through advertising. Contrasting this, more than 90% of Bicycle Quarterly revenues come from readers' subscriptions. So we can afford to tell you what we think, even if it offends our advertisers. In fact, advertisers who make good products appreciate our honest reviews: If we like something, it really is very good.
Your sister company Compass Bicycles sells tires, handlebars and other parts. Doesn't that constitute a conflict of interest when you test these and other components for Bicycle Quarterly?
That is a real concern, and we are very aware of it. Our rule is simple: If a product is extraordinary, we sell it. So we usually first test components, and then decide whether to sell them. If we find new extraordinary products, we sell them as well. That way, we have no incentive to criticize components that compete with the ones we offer - we just offer them all.
In many cases, the components we sell would not be available in North America otherwise, because the profit margins are too small. We feel that our readers are better served by having these components available, than if we told you about these fabulous parts that you cannot get. We disclose all potential conflicts of interest with each article. Our readers then can make up their own minds.
With everything we test, we try hard to be objective. If anything, we are more critical of the products we sell. In our test of the Grand Bois "Ourson" tires, we said they weren't worth the extra money over Panaracer tires, because unlike other Grand Bois tires, they use an older tire mold with a less-than-optimal tread pattern.
Conflicts of interest are unavoidable, because the cycling world is small. Most makers of "real-world" bicycles know each other, and many are good friends of ours. This close collaboration improves the quality of the bicycles they offer, so it is a good thing. But it means that conflicts of interest are unavoidable. It's actually a lot easier to criticize a component that we sell than one sold by a friend!
Is Bicycle Quarterly related to Vintage Bicycle Quarterly ?
Yes. In 2006, Vintage Bicycle Quarterly changed its name to Bicycle Quarterly to reflect its focus on the all aspects of cycling.
Is my subscription still current?
Your last issue is mailed in a special envelope stating "Your Last Issue." Also, on your address label is a number behind your name, which indicates the last issue you will receive. If we have your e-mail address on file, we will also send you a reminder when your subscription expires. If you are still in doubt about the status of your subscription, please contact us.
Has the latest issue been sent out? Why have I not received mine?
The postal service can take up to 5 weeks to deliver periodical mail. If your issue is overdue (i.e., it has not arrived by these dates: Winter: Jan. 1; Spring: May 1; Summer: Aug. 1; Autumn: Nov. 1), please contact us.
Are back issues available?
Yes, all issues are available. For more information see our Back Issues page.
Is your book on René Herse available in bookstores? How about Amazon.com?
Our books are available in many quality bookstores and bicycle shops listed on our Shops page. We like to support these stores. However, the books published by Bicycle Quarterly Press are not available at discount internet sites. The price Amazon.com would pay for our books is less than the production cost! Most publishers get around this problem increasing their mark-up, but we wanted our book to be affordable for all customers. So in effect, everybody gets a discounted price.
How is the "Limited Edition" of the René Herse book different from your standard edition?
The Limited Edition is signed and numbered. It comes with a specially made slip case. It includes four unpublished 8x10" ready-to-frame prints of historic photographs, made by a professional photo lab. There will be only 150 copies of the Limited Edition. The book itself is the same for both editions. All our books are made to the highest standards, with sewn hardcover binding and archival paper.
I have a bike from a French constructeur like René Herse, Alex Singer, Jo Routens, Reyhand, Charrel or similar. Can you help me identify it?
Please contact our editor. Use the "letters to the editor" address. We may be able to help you with information.
I have an old bike. Can you tell me its value?
As a matter of policy, Bicycle Quarterly does not comment on bicycle values. These values fluctuate with time and other factors. In the end, each bicycle is worth as much as somebody is willing to pay for it.
I have an old bike. I could not find any information on it on your site. Where might I find help?
A good source of information is the Classic Rendezvous web-site (classicrendezvous.com), which also includes an e-mail list where you can ask questions (or search the archives).
I have a technical question. Can you help me with this?
Due to the volume of mail we receive, we cannot answer individual technical questions. A good resource is the Internet-Bob list Internet-Bob list, where you will find a group of avid riders who may be able to help you.
What is the relationship between Compass Bicycles Ltd. and Bicycle Quarterly?
Compass Bicycles Ltd. is a sister company to Bicycle Quarterly Press. For years, we were frustrated about great components that either were no longer available or were not sold in North America. We finally decided to take things into our own hands and offer these components through Compass Bicycles. Also read our blog entry on this subject.