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who here does NOT work on their bike?

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who here does NOT work on their bike?

Old 01-03-13, 12:21 AM
  #1  
dimabear
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who here does NOT work on their bike?

hi all,

just curious who here doesn't work on their own bike. i just like to ride and enjoy it. however if i need a new part (i.e. stem, pedals, cassette, etc), i just pay the shop to install it. anyone else do this? call it what you want, but i'm sure my LBS likes it.

just wanted to see who else does this. my guess is, not many

oh well. enjoy the ride!
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Old 01-03-13, 12:29 AM
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At some point, you'll want to fix something and not wait two days to get it done. I like to support my LBS, but honestly they've taught me how to do a lot of my own wrenching.
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Old 01-03-13, 12:33 AM
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Working on my bikes is part of the fun for me.
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Old 01-03-13, 12:33 AM
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yes, i completely agree. probably the only work i've done is replace my tubes during a flat (too many to count), switch on a trainer wheel, take off the chain to clean it, and adjust the seat height.

kinda afraid of messing up something, and also buying the tools...but i know, if i keep this up, i could have probably already paid for the tools
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Old 01-03-13, 12:37 AM
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how do you choose the parts? you go with whatever your lbs stocks?
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Old 01-03-13, 12:47 AM
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I'd like to think someday I will stroll into my LBS wearing a tweed suit and bowler cap, sporting a waxed mustache and an expensive vest-pocket timepiece, wheel my $10k carbon race bike up to the counter and ask to have them change out the tubes because they're "getting a bit stale I do think". After they inform me that my bike has tubular tires, I will act astonished and have them order me the most expensive carbon clincher wheelset their distributor can source.

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Old 01-03-13, 04:18 AM
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I would not trust any or the LBS's or local mechanics I know of to be as careful as I am when working on my bike.

Plus, as already said, wrenching really is half the fun.
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Old 01-03-13, 04:54 AM
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Not me. I prefer doing it myself to save time and money, and I like everything to run perfectly. With a workstand and the correct tools, most jobs are straightforward. Probably the most time consuming jobs are fitting mudguards and wrapping bar tape, but none of is hard.

In the last week or so I've had to replace the BB (HTII) and rear derailleur on my winter bike due to wear. I also replaced the cables and re-wrapped the bars on both my bikes, serviced a freehub, fixed a slightly buckled wheel, and repaired a cracked mudguard. The difference in shifting quality just from replacing cables is remarkable. I'm debating whether to cut the aluminium steerer on my winter bike because it looks a bit daft with 3cm of spacers above the stem.

I'd probably tackle most jobs aside from anything requiring to install or remove press fit bearings (e.g. headset) or aligning a derailleur hanger because I don't have the tools and they're expensive to buy.
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Old 01-03-13, 05:19 AM
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i love to work on bikes. its gratifying to know that you did the mechanical upkeep on it. if something breaks, then you know who to blame. really, they are not that hard to figure out. i usually learn a new skill as needed but for things like wheel building or even truing, i leave that up to a shop. everything else besides bottom bracket installation and installing a headset is a breeze.
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Old 01-03-13, 05:45 AM
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I used to work on mine a lot. Now I couldn't be bothered, so I wait until the last minute to fix/replace things.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Homebrew01 View Post
I used to work on mine a lot. Now I couldn't be bothered, so I wait until the last minute to fix/replace things.
I worked as a mechanic for years (a long time ago) and know how to do most everything but frankly I don't want to so much anymore.

Ill do things like my bar wrap or tighten a cable and clean my drivetrain but that's about it. I have a great shop about an hour away with great mechanics and I'm happy to have them install or work on the bike.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:27 AM
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I am busy and my time is worth a lot. That is why I do my own wrenching. I don't have time to waste waiting for a LBS to do maintenence and repairs.

This isn't rocket science. Bikes are pretty simple mechanical devices. With a few simple tools and the Park Tool tutorials, you can do 95% of the maintenence and repairs on a bike. You will save time and money. You will also in all liklihood have a better running bike because you will be more proactive.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:40 AM
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Don't take this the wrong way, but the economy must be turning for the better. People paying the LBS (as nice as they may be) to twist an allen wrench, or spending $10,000 on a recreational road bike.

Some truly don't like getting their hands dirty or weren't born with the wrenching gene. Nothing wrong with that, and I am sure the LBS appreciates the opportunity to service your rig(s).

A few years ago I paid my LBS over $100 for a handful of services that I have since learned to do myself. Bottom brackets/cranks, headsets, even lever/shifting and brake adjustments. Once I factor out the cost of the tools, I am still way ahead. Of course, I have the gene.

...and what jrobe said.

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Old 01-03-13, 07:48 AM
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I don't do my own wrenching.

The reason? My bikes are not that old (2007 is the oldest one) and they barely need any maintenance despite regular use. I even bought a bike stand and have yet to really need it.

I do take the bikes in once a year for a more than trivial tuneup at the LBS, but apart from that, I only do allen wrench stuff like bolt tightening, cleaning, and bartape. I know how to do many other things and even have tools for them, but in retrospect I consider them a waste of money/space since I maybe need them once every 2-3 years and even then I'm likely better off taking to the LBS.

It definitely is going against the grain on a bike forum to say this, but I'd say that bike repair for me was one of the least useful skills I needed since my bikes really have only needed minimal tuning. If I'd owned 4-5 bikes, it would probably make more financial sense to do my own work since that gets pricey quick, but with 2 recent-gen bikes, it's honestly a waste of my time to fix more than trivial stuff. The time it took me to remove and replace a derailleur was totally not worth it given that even once I learned it, I promptly forgot the details since I'd do it less than once every 5 years. Same was with removing the bottom bracket and replacing the front brake - took me wayyyy longer than expected to get it right, still wasn't sure it was totally correct, and then forgot all the details since I haven't done either in years.

I do the 'free' LBS tuning stuff which I consider trivial - derailleur adjustment (small ones), chain replacement, brake replacement. I don't do cables even as one of my bikes has internal routing.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:49 AM
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Originally Posted by dimabear View Post
hi all,

just curious who here doesn't work on their own bike. i just like to ride and enjoy it. however if i need a new part (i.e. stem, pedals, cassette, etc), i just pay the shop to install it. anyone else do this? call it what you want, but i'm sure my LBS likes it.

just wanted to see who else does this. my guess is, not many

oh well. enjoy the ride!
Depends on the availability of two key resources, namely time and money. It also depends on how much of both the shop takes to do the work.

If you work long hours for a high income and the shop turns stuff around fast and cheap you're probably better off letting them do the work so your spare time is spent riding rather than wrenching. If you don't work full time and the shop turns stuff around slowly and charges a lot you're probably better off learning to do it yourself so your repairs take up your abundant time rather than your less abundant cash.

For me, I've got time to play with and the inclination to fiddle. It also helped sway my decision when I realised that the bike shop would charge me £34.99 for a new cassette and then another £8 to fit it, and shopping online I could buy the cassette for £15, the chain whip for £11, cassette lockring tool for £5 and a chain extension gauge for £9. So in other words for the price the LBS would charge me to do it once I could do it once myself plus buy all the tools I needed to do it again and again.

And, as it happens, having the tools to remove the cassette have been handy when I wanted to clean a cassette in the kitchen sink when the weather was awful. My wife tolerated that one, I doubt she'd have been so forgiving of a whole back wheel in the drying rack.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:55 AM
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I suspect that most folks who frequent the 41 ("enthusiasts") do their own wrenching. Those that don't are likely subject to ridicule...

However, most "recreational" cyclists probably have everything done at the LBS...even fixing flats etc.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:00 AM
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I’ll do basic maintenance, adjustments and any bolt on/off type things that don’t require exotic tools. However, I don’t enjoy it and would rather ride than wrench.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:12 AM
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I have the mechanical aptitude and ability to do my own work but am really busy. I also would rather ride than do work myself. I'm fortunate to have two really excellent LBSs and they turn work around fast. Besides I've got other bikes to ride if there's something they can't fix in a few minutes while I wait.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:13 AM
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I love building up a frame and performing my own maintenance. There are items I have the LBS perform as I have no interest or the tools are expensive but those are few and far in between.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:27 AM
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What are people doing to their bikes to require so much maintenance btw? I probably ride minimum 80mpw, and peak at 250mpw year-round, and I barely have to fix anything on my bikes. Changing bartape and chains is probably the most complicated repairs I do. The derailleurs stay set if they're set up correctly with minimal adjustment (my Sora only needs barrel adjustment over 4 years) and other than tightening loose bolts and setting seat height, I haven't needed to do much else.

I've even found that cleaning the cassette and chain works better for me ON the bike with a stiff brush, degreaser, and garden hose, than taking the cassette off. So easy.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by hhnngg1 View Post
What are people doing to their bikes to require so much maintenance btw? I probably ride minimum 80mpw, and peak at 250mpw year-round, and I barely have to fix anything on my bikes. Changing bartape and chains is probably the most complicated repairs I do. The derailleurs stay set if they're set up correctly with minimal adjustment (my Sora only needs barrel adjustment over 4 years) and other than tightening loose bolts and setting seat height, I haven't needed to do much else.

I've even found that cleaning the cassette and chain works better for me ON the bike with a stiff brush, degreaser, and garden hose, than taking the cassette off. So easy.
The OP mentioned changing cassettes and pedals - that doesn't sound like much to me. I do that all the time. I leave it to my LBS to take care of stuff like cabling or installing cranks etc. Tools and time are lacking for both of those.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:40 AM
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I used to do about 90% on my own, but now it's more like 30%. I do simple stuff -- tires, tubes, cassettes, chains, brakes. I get the LBS to do the more complicated stuff, and stuff I know how to do but I either don't have time or I don't do it much, so I'm just not as good at it, like wheel tensioning, hub and headset servicing, and cable changes (just went to Nokon, and I wasn't about to try that myself). I also find that since I got a really nice bike, I'm much more exacting on things like a slight scratch on the surface of my bottom bracket. When it's generic $20 stuff, who cares...but when it's a focal point because of the color and it's a Chris King or Campy, that's a different story.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:43 AM
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Indexing adjustments, housing installation, and replacing cables (shifters and brakes) are insanely easy.
I spent quite a bit of time tweaking things while I learned stuff the hard way but nowadays it tends to be a rather quick once a year sort of a deal. However, we have 11 bikes and one being built so it does save the family money doing it ourselves.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:46 AM
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It's quicker and less time consuming for me to do my own work than it is to bring the bike to the shop and pick it up when it's done. And I know it's done right. Even my favorite LBS makes mistakes. But I'm also mechanically inclined- besides bikes I've rebuilt motorcycles and cars. I still change the oil in my cars. I already have a lot of tools and knowledge and I'm always interested in more. I recently started building wheels again.

If you don't want to deal with it, there's nothing wrong with taking your bike to the shop. I think that to be self-sufficient on rides you should know how to fit flats and adjust derailleurs and brakes.
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Old 01-03-13, 09:00 AM
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I have a fair selection of tools since i built a couple of bikes, but without them with me, I have no choice but to get a shop to do it. My cables are due for replacement, which means bar tap will need to be replaced too and since I'm changing cables, I might as well move my handlebars up which I've wanted to do all year but the cables were too short.
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