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Why don't you build your own bikes?

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Why don't you build your own bikes?

Old 05-23-09, 08:30 PM
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Hamish200sx
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Why don't you build your own bikes?

Every time I see on a post on here by someone after they built their latest $5,000 dollar bike I am baffled by the fact that it seems none of them do their own work? What's the deal? How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?
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Old 05-23-09, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
Every time I see on a post on here by someone after they built their latest $5,000 dollar bike I am baffled by the fact that it seems none of them do their own work? What's the deal? How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?
Who says we don't know enough about our bicycles to assemble and adjust them??
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Old 05-23-09, 08:34 PM
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It's kind of like speedboats and porches I suppose. Few who own those work on them either. I do most maintenance on my bike, but when i dropped 3k on components for the new ride, I just felt better having a real pro assemble it for an extra hundred even though I probably could have done fine myself.
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Old 05-23-09, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?
Do you own a car? Could you have built it yourself?
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Old 05-23-09, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
Every time I see on a post on here by someone after they built their latest $5,000 dollar bike I am baffled by the fact that it seems none of them do their own work? What's the deal? How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?


We are consumers...remember? Buy...buy more...be happy.
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Old 05-23-09, 08:45 PM
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Build and maintain my own.
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Old 05-23-09, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by gwchem View Post
Do you own a car? Could you have built it yourself?
I assume most of you guys have a passion for cycling and that is why you spend time on this site. I would also assume that most of you see your vehicles as simply a tool that gets you around and thus do not care as much about what is going in on under the hood. Those that ride $5000 bikes definitely have more money than I do.Maybe its just a financial issue. I can't afford to have a shop do all my work, I do it myself.
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Old 05-23-09, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?
To whom does one have to justify it? You? What is your poor argument supporting the claim that you can own a $5K bike only if you build and "adjust" it yourself?
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Old 05-23-09, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by thirdin77 View Post
To whom does one have to justify it? You? What is your poor argument supporting the claim that you can own a $5K bike only if you build and "adjust" it yourself?
I just don't understand why you wouldn't want to. Is actually riding the bike the only part about cycling that you enjoy?
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Old 05-23-09, 08:56 PM
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I do some of the work, and have others do some of the work. Depends on what needs doing...
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Old 05-23-09, 08:58 PM
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i have one bike that i had built. i have 3 that i've built.
build your own. if you spend a lot of time on your bike there's no excuse not to.
you owe it to yourself.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:01 PM
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I simply haven't had a modern road bike. My last real wrenching experience ended in about 1980. That said, as I learn to maintain this new beast, I'll get more and more comfortable and eventually build the toolset and skillset to build my own from the ground up.

I'd gladly trade computer building lessons for bike building lessons
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Old 05-23-09, 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
Those that ride $5000 bikes definitely have more money than I do.Maybe its just a financial issue. I can't afford to have a shop do all my work, I do it myself.

Ah, I see where this question is coming from.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:09 PM
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I do.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:10 PM
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I built my last one. My long delayed cx bike project will be my second bike. I should be able to start acquiring parts in the near future. I be poor.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
Every time I see on a post on here by someone after they built their latest $5,000 dollar bike I am baffled by the fact that it seems none of them do their own work? What's the deal? How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?
Hello Hamish200sx,

I think you've made a rather harsh judgment about people who purchase high-end bicycles.

First, you have to be fairly mechanically inclined to build any bike. Also, building a high-end bike properly requires a fairly healthy investment in tools. You've made a pretty big assumption on both parts in your criticism.

Also, have you built a bike from a box full of parts or are you just maintaining your bike? Maintaining a bike is much simpler than building one.

BTW, I build and maintain all of my road and track bikes but I don't expect others to do the same. There is absolutely nothing wrong with just riding them.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:15 PM
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@ Hamish (who isn't being that, exactly, is he )

You're probably also assuming that it's less expensive to build your own, vs. have someone else do it or buy it finished. The money spent on tools, and the time spent on learning to do the work is not unsubstantial. Plus, you can often get the bike cheaper if it's prebuilt than putting it together in bits and pieces. Sometimes that's not true, and good deals can be had if you know where (and when) to look.

The real benefit to doing it yourself is that you get exactly what you want, without having to replace somebody elses choice of components.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:20 PM
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Depends on what you want. If you find a bike that is a combination of the frameset, wheels, and gruppo you want, then its usually cheaper to buy them all together than buying the parts and assembling it yourself.
But if there is anything substantial on a new bike you want to upgrade it probably makes more sense to build one up. Truth is though, building a bike is hard..putting it together is easy but really getting everything tuned up and dialed in is hard, so if you dont really enjoy working on bikes it can be more of a hassle than its worth.
I build my bikes, but mostly because I have a lot of spare parts laying around and can use a lot of them. When I break a frame or taco a wheel beyond repair, I cannabalize all usable parts off it before trashing it, so I have alot of extra stuff laying around and it doesnt make sense to buy new stuff attached to a new frame.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:26 PM
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Not everyone enjoys working on their bike. Also, for some people money is not as valuable as their time in which case it is cheaper to just pay an expert to do the work for them.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:36 PM
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Originally Posted by I_Like_Bike View Post
Not everyone enjoys working on their bike. Also, for some people money is not as valuable as their time in which case it is cheaper to just pay an expert to do the work for them.
Yeah you guys make some good points. I have built all 3 of my bikes, none of them are that high-end and I have definitely learned a lot from doing things wrong.
If I am really honest with myself its probably that I am jealous you guys get to ride that stuff and I don't.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:47 PM
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i've also never understood why some people prefer to take their bikes to a LBS for adjustments or assembly... doesn't it seem more time consuming to do that rather than to just invest in a few relatively cheap tools and learn to do it yourself? maybe some people are intimidated by wrenching on their own bikes, but i got to say, its fairly simple. everything is easily reachable and plug and play for the most part... a bike is not a mechanically complex machine. the only service i ever use from a LBS is to press head set cups (tool is too expensive and if its a carbon bike, i'd rather not take a chance with the DIY methods) and to cut a carbon steerer.

i guess there's nothing wrong with owning a 5k bike and having it assembled or adjusted by a bike mechanic, but i think you lose street cred and the right to say "my build or i built..." besides, most likely, you'll be that guy that owns a pinarello or colnago and can't ride worth a lick... not that there's anything wrong with that either.
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Old 05-23-09, 09:59 PM
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Most of the time it works out cheaper to buy a complete bike rather than buying all the components individually and then there's the many $$ worth of tools you need to assemble a bike properly (I don't want something coming loose/falling off when I'm flying down a hill at 80km/h). Price for tools can run into several hundred $$, maybe over $1000 depending on brands and type of tools. Then there is the expertise of a good mechanic.

Luckily I can afford this, if you can't then I guess you have to make do with what tools and skill you have and hope it works out.
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Old 05-23-09, 10:04 PM
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First thing I do to a bike is strip it down and build it back up. Maybe it just never comes up often because it's not that big of a deal.
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Old 05-23-09, 10:31 PM
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Economy of scale.
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Old 05-23-09, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamish200sx View Post
Every time I see on a post on here by someone after they built their latest $5,000 dollar bike I am baffled by the fact that it seems none of them do their own work? What's the deal? How do you justify spending thousands of dollars on a bike when you don't know enough about it to assemble and adjust it?
Not sure how you are arriving at that conclusion.
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