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Liberty Street Cyclery

Posted by Derek Flack / Posted on April 25, 2011

Liberty Street CycleryLiberty Street Cyclery is a small shop that specializes in speedy repairs and custom builds. Opened by Ed Tsui last spring, the space has a casual everyone-knows-your-name type vibe, which its owner fosters by chatting with customers as he does repairs in the open shop area that makes up the heart of the store. In fact, the whole set up looks a lot like a bar, which is a nice change from the often hidden shop areas your bike is carted off to when in need of repair. I always find it a bit easier to trust mechanics who do their work out in the open, so this has always been a subtle plus for me when choosing where to take my bike when its in need of some TLC.

Liberty Street CycleryTsui likes to think of his shop as a "garage" on account how inviting he tries to make it for those in need of a quick repair or who are just passing by. I like the concept, and if my short visit is any indication, it seems to be working. During the thirty minutes I'm at the store, there's a pretty steady stream of customers for a cold and grey Tuesday in April. One person wants to order a crankset for his fixie/track bike, another needs a new helmet, there's a few tune-up requests, and the whole time there's someone flipping through a magazine at the bar.

Liberty Street CycleryThis little snippet actually provides a pretty good overview of what Liberty Street Cyclery is all about. Although the store does stock a small selection of bikes, this isn't the place to go if you're looking to peruse a wide array of floor models. The philosophy is thoroughly service-oriented, so custom orders and builds are the norm rather than the exception. You'll still find some Devinci and Opus bikes on the sales floor, but I suspect these serve almost as a starting point for a longer conversation about building a bike that best suits the prospective customer's needs.

Liberty Street CycleryAccessories are a different story. Being an urban bike shop — and the only one in Liberty Village — there's a good selection of everything that the commuter or utility cyclist could need, including fenders, locks, lights, tubes and tires amongst other things. There's not much clothing here, but that's not really the main focus anyway.

Liberty Street CycleryFar more important to Tsui is the repair end of things. As he puts it, "we're willing to work on anything that'll fit in our shop," which I take to mean that there's no bike snobbery here. That's not to say high end bikes aren't welcome, but that the mechanics are as comfortable working on a Dura Ace derailleur ad they are on a 15-year-old headset. Some folks don't like jack of all trades mechanics, but after watching him work, I get the sense that Tsui is well qualified to take care of pretty much everything when it comes to a dandy horse. And that's a good thing if you live in Liberty Village.


Who the store caters to: Liberty Village residents, urban cyclists

Bike price range: $500-$10,000 (custom build), most bikes range between $600 and $3000.

Service capabilities: Everything, hydraulic specialist

The tune-up: For $60 you get complete external adjustment of the bike (bikes, gears, bolts) and your wheels tensioned and trued, rims resurfaced if necessary, suspension cleaned, and a full on road test by a mechanic. Liberty Street Cyclery quotes a 24hr turnaround time on tune-ups.

Liberty Street Cyclery



Laura / April 25, 2011 at 04:03 pm
Not only to these guys know their stuff but (like Derek said)it's the atmosphere that really makes the shop. It's friendly and welcoming and best of all, you get to watch 'em work on your ride!
Ralph / April 25, 2011 at 05:52 pm
My job recently relocated to Liberty Village. Being an avid cyclist, I was happy to find a bike shop in this urban wasteland (sorry I REALLY hate Liberty). I was even more thrilled that the guys at Liberty Cyclery were friendly and super helpful! They adjusted my bike wheel within minutes, showed me the trick for doing it and didn't want to charge me. Needless to say, I've been back a number of times and have made purchases since. I'd recommend them to anyone in need of service or wanting to purchase a new bike or parts!
Really Hot Girl / April 25, 2011 at 08:14 pm
Not only are these guys the best and most interesting mechanics in the city, but they are the best looking and most charming too! I wonder if Ed is single. Next time I go in for a little check on my cute bicycle I'll make sure I find out, teehee =P
maxwell church / May 13, 2011 at 01:18 am
Ed is a top notch mechanic one of the best i know. I had the pleasure of working with him and he taught me everything i know now (although it might take years for me to reach his level of perfection. Im glad to see his shop is doing so well!
Jun / June 23, 2011 at 08:19 pm
God-sent, is what they are. Best shop, best mechanics!
Garrett / July 13, 2011 at 09:24 am
The guys always have time to stop and talk or take on a last minute emergency. Ed is one of the few guys around that knows hydraulics & suspension like he grew up with it. Cool, relaxed atmosphere and you can pull up to the bar to snack at while the guys work on your bike.
Daniel / July 13, 2011 at 12:26 pm
Ed and his crew are simply the best. Great at what they do, easy to deal with and honest to a fault. I've recommended this little shop to all who will listen and the feedback from the people that visit is universally glowing. Highly highly recommended for everything from a simple tune up to building up a high-end bike!
taliya / July 14, 2011 at 09:56 pm
Ed and Mitch save my life regularly. For real.
Best Bike shop ever.
Polly / March 3, 2012 at 09:48 pm
Pay or else!- approach to customer service.
The service started out friendly and I was assured that they had done my anusual brake repair a few times before and that it wouldn't be an issue. Although I was a little annoyed that I was told a lesser price and wait time on the phone then in shop (a difference of just one hour to 6 hours!!) I felt comfortable that they knew what to do. I also left my number if they needed to reach me.
Although the repair was done in the time stated it was done very poorly. There was a wire cut from the brake that was left pointing out and would catch on things and scrape me every time it's used. Sure the brake now worked, but the repair was done with very little regard to my safety and was still unusable. I asked them if a longer cable could be used so that the end could be tucked away properly so that it would not point out, be safe, and would have a more finished look. He said that he had spent a fair bit of time working on it and if I was not satisfied he could cut the cable (rendering it in worse condition than what I had brought it in as, not to mention that they reused my parts- so what he was suggesting to damage was mine, not his to cut) and I could find another shop to fix it for me. I was floored. Honestly, it wouldn't have taken much to do the job right, clearly they knew how to fix the break but they did a poor job on the finishing touches to do the job right. I was willing to leave my parts with them so that the finishing touches could be done, heck I would have even been willing to pay more if it ment having a satisfactory job done. They were not willing to do this it seemed to me however that all they wanted was the quick buck. They put me in an awkward situation, pay, or have them damage my property. Rediclous and very intimidating. I paid, and then I got the heck out! Now I have to waste another day and more $$ finding a bike shop to correct their shoddy work. I strongly advise you to take your repaires to professionals who take pride in their work and who value your safety.
Seb / March 11, 2012 at 02:29 pm
Had Ed build up a set of wheels for me last spring, and after 2000 plus Km and a winter, they're still as straight and smooth as when I got them! Best wheel builds I've ever had. As for their customer service, these guys are so easy going and honest that they tell you NOT to buy stuff you don't need! Needless to say, I trust these guys, and I'll be coming back a lot. Thanks for everything!
Mary / May 26, 2012 at 01:44 pm
These guys are the most honest mechanics I've ever met - I was given great advice that saved me a bunch of money on my son's new bike. Plus they did an excellent job on my repair. Couldn't be more pleased, really!

As someone who works in customer service, I've experienced the demanding, hard to please types. Some may not understand that the fact that they do quality repairs within 24hrs (even in peak season!!!) is ridiculously impressive - other shops take weeks...AND they only have THREE employees!

Good job guys.
Bobby / October 26, 2012 at 06:46 am
Does anybody know if they sell stunt scooters?
I'm looking for a good stunt scooter dealer
Kelly / April 24, 2013 at 08:27 am
I love these guys! They are quick, do great work, the shop is warm and welcoming. Ive had a string of bad luck with my bike lately, and these guys awesome in helping getting to the bottom of what was going on during my repeated visits. Highly recommended!
Ryan Bay replying to a comment from Polly / April 24, 2013 at 09:38 am
Re: Polly,

I'm just curious what kind of bike you have where A) you sit close enough to the brakes that the wire hanging out can scrape you and B)what kind of brakes you have that are located ANYWHERE near the seated position of a typical bike. On normal bikes, there is a bit of exposed wire to adjust tension. I suspect the real problem is that you are actually an idiot, and no bike shop can fix that. Please post pictures of either A) these mystery brakes or B) your high school diploma, so that you can clear your sullied name.
Anthony / April 24, 2013 at 09:40 am
Good service, they never try to add-on or upgrade your repair request. I drop off my bike when they open and it is ready when I am finished work. I have used them at least 6 times and was very happy with their work each time.
Snakbar / April 24, 2013 at 09:53 pm
Had a blown tire, and a few questions, Ed was super helpful and did a great job! So glad this place is within stone's throw away from my place!
Stanly / June 29, 2013 at 03:15 pm
Called in advance, asked about their selection of men's 26" multi-speed cruisers. They said they've got several to choose from. Went down from Caledon to check it out, not a single model to be seen or found. No catalog available, so not sure what kind of meds the sale person was on, felt like given him a mallot to the head. Waisted my time and gas money goin all the way down only to be faced with a bunch of blank faced degenerates.
Chris P / April 12, 2014 at 07:47 pm
Like others have said, these guys don't rip you off and give you excellent service. I have multiple cycle shops closer around me, but over the years, have leaned towards this shop for all tune ups.
Michel / April 24, 2014 at 07:51 pm
Highly recommend this little bike shop. Great service, friendly and very community minded. They will not over charge you and service with a smile. They always have time to chat and they know their stuff.
GISJoe / May 23, 2014 at 09:23 pm
I started coming here after getting annoyed with the change in philosophy at Urbane (thankfully, a mechanic there recommended Ed's new shop that had just opened, Ed being a former Urban mechanic).

There are some key reasons I like Liberty Cyclery:
1) They know their way around a variety of bikes. I had been back to Urbane a number of times for shifter problems on the new rear cassette: no satisfaction. First time I went to Liberty it was fixed, no problem. It's been like that ever since. I took my velo in (bike and odd), and they fixed it.
2) They don't oversell. They tell me what I need, and advise me to save money and not go to the next level of components, or replace something that will last longer (as in: yes, my chain is stretched, but don't replace your drivetrain until after Paris to Ancaster (P2A), and here's a quicklink in case your chain breaks in the race). Urbane tried to sell me two new wheels when all I needed were new bearings back and front. Another time I went in with what I thought was a pock in my rim, meaning I needed a new one (having been told by another shop I needed one). Mitch recognized it as a scrap of junk picked up on the road, whittled it out and sent me on my way, gratis.
3) Quick service. If it's simple, they'll fix it in one stop. They don't take too long. If they take too long, they swallow the time (like when they fixed my wife's Miele with a brutal and fundamental internal hub shifter problem). They take it personally if they can't find the problem and fix it.
4) They charge honestly, for what they do. I'd rather pay a decent rate for good work, and they make it worthwhile in terms of money and time.
5) They're nice and they have a sense of humour. All of the people who work there. They have a good perspective on bikes, life and the world. Mitch even says hi when he's passing you on the P2A.

YMMV, but my experience with these guys is stellar, without exception.
Edward / June 5, 2014 at 02:32 am
I bought a month ago. These guys know what they are doing.
Simply amazing!
joseph / March 13, 2015 at 09:19 pm
came to this shop with a warranty issue about a bike pump. they said they could help but did not deal with this distributor much and the warranty would take a couple of months to get in. they said they would call me when warranty product in. March 13 ( 3 months after drop off of defective pump) no call still. So i called and elijah said they couldn't fix and they didn't make that pump anymore and would have to get replacement (even though before i did warranty if looked at product website which stated lifetime warranty). He advised me he would call his boss to see which way to go to get pump and he would call me back. No call back, but when I called the next day it was magically fixed. When i went to pick up it was a different pump they tried to say was mine. He said it was a year warranty. Yet l was told when I bought it, it was lifetime and that is what the website says as well. Then he began to try to sell me same pump. Again stating is was out of warranty. What !!

Website says lifetime you say not and here by the way i can sell you again for $30. Am I retarded?

Talk about a con job. If this is how they carry out business I would never deal with them again, which i wont.

3,5 months later and still with same broken pump, thanks. I will find a quality store to do the warranty.
Vicki / May 26, 2015 at 04:26 pm
I am visiting Toronto and my new pre loved bike was checked over for safety and adjustments made by Mitch.
The guys could not have been more pleasant. They are professional & have an obvious love for bikes and fixing them.
My bike was ready the next day and delivered by Mitch to my door – what service!! Thanks 

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