One way to help find the bike shops that may have the types of bikes that interest you is to check the various brands that interest you web sites for local dealers.
Swobo is strong on IGH bikes as is Civia. Also a dealer who is into cargo bikes such as Yuba or Xtracycle is likely to also be into practical IGH urban bikes.
A littke up-front resaerch may decrease your level of disappointment with a bike shop. Also remember that if you have a specific model in mind that many IBDs can get makes and models that they are not listed dealers for. My LBS got me both my Swobo and Civia when requested even though they were not listed dealers for either. If possible TALK TO THE OWNER.
Civia, Surly and Salsa are all brands from a major parts distributor and any LBS with an account can get their bikes I have been told unless there is a major dealer locally with an exclusive for one of those makes. Swobo and Xtracycle will wholesale to most licensed dealers too I understand and the same is true of oher distributors. Remember that the distributors purpose is to sell bikes.
As Aaron has noted actual cash with a request for a particular bike talks. Product suggestions to employees rather than to a shop owner or manager without an order are probably not going to have much effect. As the saying goes "Money talks and BS walks"
--- In Geared_hub_bikes@yahoogroups.com, Al <k3eax@...> wrote:
> Well yesterday saw me again visit a Philadelphia bike shop. This one located in Philadelphia's downtown, an area where bikes are plentifully seen in use on the streets and locked along the sidewalks ---- yes, Philadelphia, or at least certainly its center, is becoming a city of bicyclists. Now one would imagine that a bike shop in such a location would offer utility bikes suitable for commuting, but the shop doesn't! When I asked if there were bikes available with internal gears, fenders, racks, and upright handlebars, I was given was one of those "are you kidding" looks. I then proceeded to give one of my mini-lectures on the need to cater to all segments of the cycling population. I was soon walked toward the door.
> Will their current narrow offering of road bikes enable the shop to stay in business? Will market forces cause them to offer a more complete range of bike types? I'll visit this shop from time to time and keep the group posted.
> Mind you now this shop is or was involved with a local university in helping to create a campus more amenable to cyclists and their needs ---go figure!
> Al in Philadelphia