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  1. #1
    Senior Member Smoked's Avatar
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    Would you haggle this on a new bike purchase?

    Hey gang

    I was able to find a 2009 Trek at a LBS. The bike has a triple crank on it and I was wanting the compact crank. The Shop said that they would swap it out even, but they would charge me labor in doing it. Should I haggle the labor cost as well, or just go with it? This is my first purchase where I am doing something like this and I am not sure of the etiquette. I was thinking since I am paying over 2 grand for a bike, then perhaps they should work with me some...


    Thoughts?

  2. #2
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    How friggin' much labor cost can there be in a crank swap?

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    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    Seems your other option requires a crash <koff> course in bike-mechanics and buying around $75 of tools. Take your pick.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cateye View Post
    Only panthers007 is stupid enough to believe that this is a good idea.

  4. #4
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    Find out what the labor will be IN ADVANCE and then make your decision. I would expect it to be around $30 or so depending on what is involved.

    A proper swap might also require changing the bottom bracket and front derailleur too as well as adjusting chain length. Ask about them. Personally where I live, and at my age, I would prefer the triple.
    Gear Hubs Owned: Rohloff disc brake, SRAM iM9 disc brake, SRAM P5 freewheel, Sachs Torpedo 3 speed freewheel, NuVinci CVT, Shimano Alfine SG S-501, Sturmey Archer S5-2 Alloy. Other: 83 Colnago Super Record, Univega Via De Oro

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  5. #5
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    If the shop don't want to sell a bike- Find another that will.

    It takes 5 minutes to change a crank- 10 if you want to do it properly. The length if time it will take them to stop argueing with me on why they won't do it for free.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  6. #6
    Senior Member Smoked's Avatar
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    they are being pretty cool about it, the shop attendant was making it out to be no big deal to do. I am going in on Saturday to finalize the deal and just wanted some simple input...I will see what the cost is and go from there...


    Thanks for the response guys, it is appreciated.

  7. #7
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    don't know what the usual practice is for this type of thing but I notice that you're a firefighter.....they should do it for free in appreciation of what you do.....my 2

  8. #8
    Senior Member Smoked's Avatar
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    Thanks homebody.... I do not like to use what I do for a living to get perks, and will often argue against it. Its a job that pays the bills... I am just lucky enough to have the job that I always wanted and get paid for it as well...


    Like I mentioned, I have never bought a bike where I wanted to change out components. Hell this is my second bike purchase from a LBS altogether. I did not know what the practice usually is. I see no reason for owning a triple crank in Texas and just wanted input before I close the deal out on Saturday...


    Thanks for the reply.

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    I'd try to get it for free - it isn't much work and they get a big purchase out of you and probably some repeat business.

  10. #10
    Senior Member meanwhile's Avatar
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    I'd phone half a dozen shops and ask for their best price on the combination, and possibly email some Internet suppliers. I'd also ask the LBS whether they expected me to take the showroom model - in which case why aren't I getting a discount? Or whether they are building up a fresh bike for me, in which case why am I getting charged for work?

  11. #11
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    Sorry but I think they are giving you a good deal. I can't imagine them charging you more than $30 labor, and you are asking them to modify a bike that they paid for stock as is. Not only that they are giving you a new in the box part for trade for an OEM out of the box part that they can't just put back on the shelf and sell for full price.
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  12. #12
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    I had the 53/39 rings on my SuperSix swapped for 50/34's when I bought it. Shop gave me an even swap on the rings and charged $20 for the labor. No big deal. They're putting extra effort into modifying a stock bike to make it the way you want it.

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  13. #13
    Old fart JohnDThompson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DX-MAN View Post
    How friggin' much labor cost can there be in a crank swap?
    Going from a standard triple to a compact double would mean more than a simple crank swap. The BB would have to be changed as well (shorter spindle), the chain length adjusted, front derailleur lowered, and the derailleurs adjusted.

  14. #14
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    Perhaps a dumb question, but can you use the triple brifters with a double compact without any problems? Can you lock out the extra shift to the granny ring?

    As for the cost, I paid $40 to swap a crank to change crank arm lengths. I did not buy the bike or the new crank from the LBS that swapped it. Too much? Maybe, but they turned it around quickly and did it right the first time. I'm more concerned about losing access to my bike for 2 or 3 days than I am about haggling over $10 or $20.

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    Keep the triple. There are no disadvantages, and someday you'll be glad you have that granny.
    As for your original question, if you're spending $2000 for a bike, you can afford to pay the guy for his time and labor. Even if he doesn't have to change the bottom bracket, he'll need to do some fiddling, possibly change the chain length, adjust the front derailleur, stuff like that. It's not hard, but he deserves to be paid.

  16. #16
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    If they agree not to charge you for the labor, I would certainly drop a 10 spot in the mechanic's hand. Or a 6 pack of beer, which is sometimes even better.

  17. #17
    Senior Member miamijim's Avatar
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    They should have charged you for the crank with free labor. Talk about 'doing it wrong'.
    WWW.CYCLESPEUGEOT.COM 2005 Pinarello Dogma; 1991 Paramount PDG 70 Mtb; 1976? AD Vent Noir; 1989 LeMond Maillot Juane F&F; 1993? Basso GAP F&F; 1989 Terry Symmetry; 2003 Trek 4700 Mtb; 1983 Vitus 979

  18. #18
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Walk into the bike shop like you own it and make eye contact with your salesman. Pull out your cradit card but don't give it to him yet, keep it in your hand. Ask: "Are you going to be able to cover the labor on the crank swap or am I going to have to think about this a little longer?"

    Nobody wants to lose a $2,000 sale on the last detail. If they do say "No" you've left the window open to call them back tomorrow or even later today. Either way you can rest assured that you got their bottom price for that bike.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Smoked's Avatar
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    Wow, thanks for all the great responses guys.

    The shop hinted that it would not be much, the guy that was working with me at the time was not there, and they did not want to get much into the transaction and the swap without him there (not sure if he is the owner or not). I will talk with them about it this weekend. From what I gathered its not just a simple crank swap, it would be all that has been mentioned. Honestly if its less than 50-75 dollars in labor, than its not that big of a deal, the shop owner does have to pay their bike mechanics, and irregardless, I was going to bring them a 12 pack of beer just to thank them for setting the bike up after its all said and done, crank swap or not. I want them to know me when I come in and maybe treat my baby with just a little extra touch of tlc.

    I am still debating if I want the swap or not, I dont see a need for it, then again, whats it going to hurt If I have it?

    Once again, thanks for the information and input..

  20. #20
    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    You might as well learn bike-mechanics. Sounds to me like this debate is unending - and just keeping it as an option, or doing it and paying the labor charge, should be a painless decision. Now look at the mess!
    Quote Originally Posted by Cateye View Post
    Only panthers007 is stupid enough to believe that this is a good idea.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smoked View Post
    Hey gang

    I was able to find a 2009 Trek at a LBS. The bike has a triple crank on it and I was wanting the compact crank. The Shop said that they would swap it out even, but they would charge me labor in doing it. Should I haggle the labor cost as well, or just go with it? This is my first purchase where I am doing something like this and I am not sure of the etiquette. I was thinking since I am paying over 2 grand for a bike, then perhaps they should work with me some...


    Thoughts?
    My LBS gives 3 years of free labour with every bike purchase, along with 2 free tuneups in each of those 3 years. Maybe I just have an outstanding LBS, but I would expect roughly the same deal if I ever bought a new bike at any store. In this case, I would take my $2000 of business elsewhere.

  22. #22
    Pwnerer Wordbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by homebody146 View Post
    don't know what the usual practice is for this type of thing but I notice that you're a firefighter.....they should do it for free in appreciation of what you do.....my 2
    I'm a carpenter. Everyone lives in a wooden house, right? I deserve some compensation.
    Quote Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
    Ski, bike and wish I was gay.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
    Going from a standard triple to a compact double would mean more than a simple crank swap. The BB would have to be changed as well (shorter spindle), the chain length adjusted, front derailleur lowered, and the derailleurs adjusted.
    This I know, JDT, as I've done it more than a dozen times myself; I'm making a point about throwing down $2K for a bike, then haggling about $20-30 worth of 'custom' work.

    Don't read more than I write, OK?

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    Wow, more than a dozen.

    The best part of the whole deal is the shop is trading you a crank they could sell for one they will sit on for five years. It is a poor cash move for them. They are going to eat the cost of the crank set(and if you have your way, the labor) to move the bike. They will not get full return on the sale of the bike until they sell the crank they took off the bike(Which, in the case of a triple road crank, can be a long freaking time) and they will never get the cost of the time spent to set it up with the compact back.

    And while I am ranting, what is the big deal about being a fireman or policeman? It is just a job. Sometimes there is calculated risk in that job, like lots of other jobs. I never had any one shaking my hand when I commercial logged(Nor did I expect it) and it was riskier on a daily basis then being a fireman(No three on two off, that was six days a week, 12 hours a day), The guy that works third shift at the Quicky Mart, making sure you can get that late night soda, is at greater risk than a cop or fireman and no one wants to give him the keys to the city.
    I do all my own work = I have very low standards

  25. #25
    Senior Member JonathanGennick's Avatar
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    Here's an alternate option to think about. Pay the labor cost. But ask if you can watch and get a quick lesson while they do the work. Then it's a win all the way around.

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