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  1. #1
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    Build it up myself, or take it to the shop ?

    Well as a few of you know, awhile ago I bought a Lemond Frame and Fork, with the hopes to build it up with some Ultegra goodies, once I had the money.. I should have it very soon now.. and started looking around both online, and at my LBS's for the best deals...

    My next question is... Should I build it myself, or take it to the LBS and have them build it up.... I have most of the basic tools, and a fair knowledge of how to put it all together... and a book, just in case... on the other hand, if I took it to an LBS, I wouldn;t have to worry that I did something wrong... so i'm kinda at a crossroads... Also.. does anyone know roughly what an LBS would charge to build it up ? Basically installing the Drivetrain, running cables, cranks, bottom bracket. and then possibly fitting the bike afterwards ?

    Lemme know what ya think

    Jeff
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  2. #2
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    I say do it yourself if you can! You'll end up learning a lot more about bikes in the process. When you finish building it, you could always bring it in to the LBS and have them check it to see if you did it right and do some tweaking on it.

    Check with your Park Tools representative in the area- the one in Chicago has a shop where you're free to bring your bike in once you've taken the classes and you can do any work you like on your bike- you've paid for the classes, but the subsequent work you do with your bike is free, and they have all the equipment you need there, plus he's there to help out too, and there are other bike enthusiasts in the shop. Or you may want to see if there are co-ops or volunteer shops in the area where you can just bring your bike in and use their tools to do the work and they can help you out if you get stuck somewhere.

  3. #3
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    Sounds like a good idea Koffee... Would I be able to find out about classes from their web site, ya think ? I'm pretty sure I can do the work myself, but never having actually done it, leaves me wondering if i could :-)

    Jeff
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  4. #4
    suitcase of courage VegasCyclist's Avatar
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    I agree with Koffee, build it up by yourself, and then when done take it to a shop and ask them to check it and give it a tune up if needed.

    here are some links to get you started

    http://www.parktool.com/repair_help/FAQindex.shtml

    http://sheldonbrown.com/repair/index.html

    http://www.kenkifer.com/bikepages/skills/repair.htm
    -VegasCyclist
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  5. #5
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    Yeah. The Park Tools site has all the representatives in the area, and when you call the representative, they'll let you know where and when the classes will be.

    For the classes in Chicago, the 6 week program is $200. I think it's money well spent, and when the classes open up (they are often crowded), I'll be in there taking them.

  6. #6
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    Sweet.. I just checked out Park's site.. there is a LBS about 6.5 miles from me that offers it... maybe i'll take a ride over there this weekend and check it out.... just have to try and convince my wife/financial advisor that $200 is a sound investment :-)

    Jeff
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  7. #7
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    Think of how much money you will save in the long run doing your own repairs vs. paying the LBS! There's your reasoning for the $200 investment.

  8. #8
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    True that Sista !!

    Jeff
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  9. #9
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    I think you'll a lot more pride in your bike if you build it yourself. At least you'd know how every part was installed and that it was done right (by you). Besides, you have all of us here to help you out..........go for it!

  10. #10
    I ride a REAL Schwinn!
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    I say go for it. Think of how much you'll learn in the process. Every little tweak and adjustment you have to make as things set in and get used will be review for you. The initial setup of components, etc. often involves adjusting eavery part. This forces you to learn the ins and outs of a product. Building up your own bike is one of the best ways to learn the workings of every part of your bike. Even if it takes you a long time, it's worth it.

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  11. #11
    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    Are you crazy, take it to the LBS, you're gonna ruin it!

    NOT!

    From a long time shop mechanic, do it yourself. You'll gain an understanding of how it all goes together and a deeper appreciation for your bike knowing it was put together by your own hands.

    $200 is pennies compared to what you'll spend over the next 10 years. Heck, if someone brought me a frame and fork and a box of parts, I'd probably charge at least $100 more like $150 to assemble it for them.

    So, $200 to learn how to do it yourself is almost a wash!

    L8R
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  12. #12
    The Red Lantern Rev.Chuck's Avatar
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    You might have the shop do the facing of the frame and press in the cups and screw in the BB. Those are the two things most likely to get messed up on install and it is allways nice to have someone else to lay it on.
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  13. #13
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    Originally posted by a2psyklnut I'd probably charge at least $100 more like $150 to assemble it for them.

    L8R [/B]
    $150 for an hour's worth of labor?!!!.......Heck, I'm quitting my job tomorrow!
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  14. #14
    Senior Member danr's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Koffee Brown
    the one in Chicago has a shop where you're free to bring your bike in once you've taken the classes and you can do any work you like on your bike- you've paid for the classes, but the subsequent work you do with your bike is free, and they have all the equipment you need there, plus he's there to help out too, and there are other bike enthusiasts in the shop.
    That is too cool.
    Does the perfect bike really exist?

  15. #15
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    If you have a shop where you know the mechanic, and know that s/he will take the time to do things right, take it to the shop. S/he does it for a living and has already forgotten more than you will probably ever know. You just won't be able to do as good a job.

    Failing that, take your time, read Barnett's on the topics that apply, buy the tools you need, and do it yourself.

  16. #16
    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    If you can completely assemble a bike, frame a bare frame and fork, including running all new cables, adjusting all derailleur stops and wrapping bar tape, in a hour, then I bow down to you. This in addition to regular interruptions with other customers is a project I schedule for about 3 hours, or better yet, the whole afternoon. That also includes reaming and facing the headtube and bottom bracket.

    $150 is probably not enough!
    "Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW, What a Ride!" - unknown
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  17. #17
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    Thanks ya'll.. I feel i have the confidence to do it now...

    Rev. Chuck what do you mean by pressing in the cups ?

    Now I just need a few hundy more for the parts, and i am good to go ;-)

    Jeff
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  18. #18
    suitcase of courage VegasCyclist's Avatar
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    Originally posted by SipperPhoto
    Rev. Chuck what do you mean by pressing in the cups ?
    he is refering to the headset, where you have two cups which are pressed into the head tube (where the fork goes through) these cups hold the bearings... it can be a bit frustrating the first time you try to put them in.
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  19. #19
    Carfree Retro Grouch hayneda's Avatar
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    I don't let anyone else work on my bikes. It's very satisfying to do all of you own wrenching. Plus, since I've long since learned what I'm doing, I always know that the job is done right.

    Dave
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  20. #20
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    If you genuinely enjoy working on mechanical things and have the necessary time, aptitude and common sense, do it yourself, but please buy a decent set of tools for the job. (I am rebuilding the Capo from the frame up, as soon as CyclArt finishes the paint job.) If assembling a bike seems like a chore, contract it out to a reputable mechanic. Another option is to compromise by doing the tasks with which you are comfortable, while hiring someone to take care of the rest, such as the headset or bottom bracket facing and installation.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
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  21. #21
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    I wonder if there's any money to be had in a "Great Frame-Up" (picture framing shop) type of shop but for bicycles. That is to say that you purchase material and prep from the shop and they assist you in building up your bike there with the proper tools on-hand. I used to work at a Great Frame-Up.
    1999 K2 OzM 2001 Aegis Aro Svelte OCP Club Member
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  22. #22
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    Originally posted by VegasCyclist
    he is refering to the headset, where you have two cups which are pressed into the head tube (where the fork goes through) these cups hold the bearings... it can be a bit frustrating the first time you try to put them in.
    Ok.. this is what I thought... I luck out there.. the frame and fork I got came with a Chris King Headset :-)

    Jeff
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  23. #23
    The Red Lantern Rev.Chuck's Avatar
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    It came with a King? That was a nice bonus. That, pressing in the headset cups, is what I am talking about.
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  24. #24
    The Cycling Photographer SipperPhoto's Avatar
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    Yeah I was stoked when I opened the box.. got the frame from Ebay.. so it;s a crap shoot anyways... and other than a couple tiny scratches which they described in the ad... it was in great shape :-) I didn;t realize it had a King headset until I got it... it is gonna be a sweet ride when I get it runnin'

    Thanks everyone for your help, and words of encouragement !

    Jeff
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  25. #25
    On Your Right ZackJones's Avatar
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    Jeff,

    I just finished building up a Fuji Ace bike for my stepdaughter to ride. It came with the headset and bottom bracket already installed. All I did was install the rest of the stuff. It took me a while to get the derailleurs adjusted but after spending a bit of time reading about them in Zinn's book on bike maintenance I was able to get them adjusted properly.

    I'm planning to build up my Nevada City with a double tiagra group sometime in the near future.

    Go for it!

    Zack
    "You never fail, you simply produce results. Learn from these" - Anonymous

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