I’ve been at Mack’s a few times now, and every time I have an awesome experience. While I love working on bikes, there are still a few tasks that I’m not comfortable doing, or haven’t been necessary frequently enough that I’ve broken down and bought the tool to get it done. For these things, I always try to go to there first because Sam Mack knows bikes in that effortless way that inspires confidence that whatever is wrong, it’s going to get fixed.
Also, it doesn’t hurt that every time I’ve gone in for a service the price has been consistent with what I think it should be. Which makes it easier to not buy that tool, and not get comfortable with that service item.
Highly recommended. If you’re in the Evanston/Skokie/Wilmette/Glenview area, definitely put this one on your short list for good local bike shops.