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So how did my bike build get to $119?

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So how did my bike build get to $119?

Old 06-25-18, 05:37 PM
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So how did my bike build get to $119?

Bike Gallery in Portland gave me an initial quote of $65 to build my bike. Somehow that got to $119. Mechanic claims he had to replace a rear spoke, a rear straddle cable for the brakes, true the front wheel and do a basic tune up.

I did notice the straddle cable and really should have replaced it before it left. A bit frayed but it really wasn't that bad IMHO. Never noticed a broken spoke. I guess it could have happened during shipping or maybe while packing but I don't see how in either case since the wheel stayed on the bike. Front wheel true seemed OK for me. I did notice the rear wheel being a bit out on my test ride right before shipping. Maybe the spoke was broken and I just wasn't seeing it. Lesson learned go over your spokes regularly.

Still not sure how that bill got to $119. I would think a basic tune up would be included with a build?
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Old 06-25-18, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
Bike Gallery in Portland gave me an initial quote of $65 to build my bike. Somehow that got to $119. Mechanic claims he had to replace a rear spoke, a rear straddle cable for the brakes, true the front wheel and do a basic tune up.

I did notice the straddle cable and really should have replaced it before it left. A bit frayed but it really wasn't that bad IMHO. Never noticed a broken spoke. I guess it could have happened during shipping or maybe while packing but I don't see how in either case since the wheel stayed on the bike. Front wheel true seemed OK for me. I did notice the rear wheel being a bit out on my test ride right before shipping. Maybe the spoke was broken and I just wasn't seeing it. Lesson learned go over your spokes regularly.

Still not sure how that bill got to $119. I would think a basic tune up would be included with a build?
Build out of a box? If so, then cost is not bad overall. We charge $85 to build out of a box, and $34 to replace spoke and true wheel. And straddle cable replacement wouldn't fall under basic tuneup. That would be $17 additional.
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Old 06-25-18, 06:08 PM
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Yeah out a box. Prices sure have gone up.
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Old 06-25-18, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
Bike Gallery in Portland gave me an initial quote of $65 to build my bike. Somehow that got to $119. Mechanic claims he had to replace a rear spoke, a rear straddle cable for the brakes, true the front wheel and do a basic tune up.

I did notice the straddle cable and really should have replaced it before it left. A bit frayed but it really wasn't that bad IMHO. Never noticed a broken spoke. I guess it could have happened during shipping or maybe while packing but I don't see how in either case since the wheel stayed on the bike. Front wheel true seemed OK for me. I did notice the rear wheel being a bit out on my test ride right before shipping. Maybe the spoke was broken and I just wasn't seeing it. Lesson learned go over your spokes regularly.

Still not sure how that bill got to $119. I would think a basic tune up would be included with a build?
That sounds about right to me. While the parts are fairly cheap the labour is bound to cost far more. You have replacing a cable, truing a wheel, tune up and replacing a spoke for an additional $54 parts and labour. I would not expect any of those when putting a shipped bike together from a box for a tour.

Just consider what you would do if you were putting the bike together yourself at the airport or train station. Put the wheels on, pedals on, handle bars on pump up the tires and go.

Last edited by Happy Feet; 06-25-18 at 06:42 PM.
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Old 06-25-18, 09:05 PM
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Labor and parts cost sounds reasonable. What I question is whether you consented or not to unknown parts and labor beyond the basics?

I'd personally be annoyed if they did that without my go ahead. I'd want a call with the details and options before they performed the work.
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Old 06-25-18, 10:25 PM
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A cable that's a "bit frayed"?. Any ethical LBS would replace it. Repair shops have to act like the bike owners know nothing about bikes and maintenance.
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Old 06-25-18, 10:43 PM
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Originally Posted by MarcusT View Post
....Repair shops have to act like the bike owners know nothing about bikes and maintenance.
....but know everything about lawsuits.
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Old 06-26-18, 04:55 AM
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Originally Posted by lesterofpuppets View Post
build out of a box? If so, then cost is not bad overall. We charge $85 to build out of a box, and $34 to replace spoke and true wheel. And straddle cable replacement wouldn't fall under basic tuneup. That would be $17 additional.
+1.
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Old 06-26-18, 04:58 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
I'd personally be annoyed if they did that without my go ahead. I'd want a call with the details and options before they performed the work.
+1. I shipped my bike to the Missoula REI a few years ago for the start of a tour. They called to tell me I needed a new chain, which I sorta thought I did before I shipped it. I considered the call a professional courtesy.
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Old 06-26-18, 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
Bike Gallery in Portland gave me an initial quote of $65 to build my bike.
Build or reassemble? I am a little confused. The word build to me implies putting it together for the first time usually from parts. You say build, but the description sounds more like you had a complete used bike that needed to be reassembled out of the box and tuned up a bit.

Not trying to nitpick, just trying to understand.
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Old 06-26-18, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Labor and parts cost sounds reasonable. What I question is whether you consented or not to unknown parts and labor beyond the basics?

I'd personally be annoyed if they did that without my go ahead. I'd want a call with the details and options before they performed the work.

They did and that is what annoys me a bit. At least give me a call ya know?
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Old 06-26-18, 06:46 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Build or reassemble? I am a little confused. The word build to me implies putting it together for the first time usually from parts. You say build, but the description sounds more like you had a complete used bike that needed to be reassembled out of the box and tuned up a bit.

Not trying to nitpick, just trying to understand.
Reassemble I guess. Front wheel on, handlebar, saddle, pedals.
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Old 06-26-18, 07:30 AM
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As a bike store owner for over twelve years, I can tell you that A) the store bilked you. And B) should have called you to talk to you about the broken spoke and brake cable before proceeding, just plain unethical.
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Old 06-26-18, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
Still not sure how that bill got to $119. I would think a basic tune up would be included with a build?
You should get an itemized receipt.

$119-$65=$54. $54 for what was done over and above doesn't seem out of line in a major market. Bike reassembly and tuning after shipping in Philly can run as much as $100.
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Old 06-26-18, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
Reassemble I guess. Front wheel on, handlebar, saddle, pedals.
I don't know what bike shop prices in America are like these days but $65 for that seems excessive. That's barely ten minutes of work.
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Old 06-26-18, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
They did and that is what annoys me a bit. At least give me a call ya know?
No arguments here. I think it is slightly unprofessional to do such work without authorization, and could end up costing the shop if that is their standard practice. I had a shirt shop do that to me when I was buying my custom wedding shirt, just send it to manufacturing without getting my OK on a price, ended up getting a 20% discount because I would have never agreed to the cost and they already had a shirt custom made for me that they couldn't really sell elsewhere.

Originally Posted by DanBell View Post
I don't know what bike shop prices in America are like these days but $65 for that seems excessive. That's barely ten minutes of work.
Pretty much the going rate, at least around me. And maybe ten minutes of work if it is coming from a reputable bike manufacturer that knows how to pack and had the bike mostly tuned and ready to go, not so if it is coming from random people may not have any mechanical inclination or packing skills. Even then, I doubt it is only ten minutes total. I probably spent close to ten minutes unpacking my bike and disposing of packaging last time I put a bike out of the box together.
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Old 06-26-18, 10:50 AM
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Portland , as a city, is the higher cost of living, but more economic,
investment, part of the state. building cranes... abound,

Entertainment, Higher Education , Hipsters, breweries .. Pot stores,

But you had no sales taxes charged.

Reassembling a tourist's bike from a carton is not a 10 minute job ,
just removing the padding put over everything, for shipping,
takes that much time and more..







...

Last edited by fietsbob; 06-26-18 at 11:02 AM.
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Old 06-26-18, 11:28 AM
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I have not hired a bike shop to do any work other than re-threading a bottom bracket shell (frame manufacturer defect) and installing headsets since I lack those tools.

But from this discussion here it is pretty clear to me that if I hired a bike shop to assemble a bike that I had shipped to them, I would specify that if any additional work was required, to contact me first.

It is unclear to me if it is a disc brake bike or rim brakes. Every time I have had a broken spoke I think it caused brake rub, something I would notice. But my memory on that is hazy because I think my last broken spoke was a couple decades ago. But if you have disc brakes I suppose a broken spoke could go unnoticed.
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Old 06-26-18, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
You should get an itemized receipt.

$119-$65=$54. $54 for what was done over and above doesn't seem out of line in a major market. Bike reassembly and tuning after shipping in Philly can run as much as $100.
Oh for certain. I was just figuring out how to broach this with the manager. My thinking is to wait till I get there and talk to him/her when I get in. Of course being calm and polite. I dont's want any animosity building up with the mechanic before I get there. I am still going to need their place so I can gear up and get dressed.
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Old 06-26-18, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
I have not hired a bike shop to do any work other than re-threading a bottom bracket shell (frame manufacturer defect) and installing headsets since I lack those tools.

But from this discussion here it is pretty clear to me that if I hired a bike shop to assemble a bike that I had shipped to them, I would specify that if any additional work was required, to contact me first.

It is unclear to me if it is a disc brake bike or rim brakes. Every time I have had a broken spoke I think it caused brake rub, something I would notice. But my memory on that is hazy because I think my last broken spoke was a couple decades ago. But if you have disc brakes I suppose a broken spoke could go unnoticed.
I did. I had a note right at the top of the box. My fault for not reminding them when they called to tell me the bike was there.
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Old 06-26-18, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Reassembling a tourist's bike from a carton is not a 10 minute job ,
just removing the padding put over everything, for shipping,
takes that much time and more..
...
True. You should see the amount of packing stuff my LBS in Philly uses to pack my bike for shipping. It's a wonder there is any room for the bike.
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Old 06-26-18, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I confused why people pay all that money for something so easy to do yourself.

I am confused why people don't understand that time is money. Vacations cost X dollars per minute. You can waste that time by building a bike or other pursuits that save money but waste valuable vacation time or you can just pay and enjoy your action the way you want.
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Old 06-26-18, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I confused why people pay all that money for something so easy to do yourself.
Because quite frankly, putting together a bike in a random corner of an airport without the use of a stand or access to real shop tools is kinda a PITA.

If I ever do a tour in the US that involves shipping a bike, I'll gladly send it to a shop and pick it up ready to go when I get there. Heck, its probably cheaper to BikeFlight it to a shop and have them assemble than to pay domestic airline bike fees anyhow.
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Old 06-26-18, 12:56 PM
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<Sigh> So this guy ships a bike in a box to be put together by the shop. We charge $75 because that's the price of a tune up. Sure, you can bolt the parts on, BUT THEN IT DOESN"T WORK CORRECTLY. So the charge for a build is for the cost of a tune up. There's a busted spoke and a busted cable. We're in the busiest part of the year and I have bikes out the yin yang and your voice mailbox is full, or you don't return my voicemail or answer the phone. To expedite the process, I do the work otherwise my schedule is screwed and my 12 hour day will turn into a 14r, because you're gonna tell me to do it anyway.

Yes, it's crappy the shop did the tack on, they should've gotten in touch. Generally when I take in a job I'll say, "Hey, if I find something else and it's less than $20, I'm not going to chase you down for approval, I'll just do it. If it's more than that, I'll call. I'll leave a message, give you time to respond, but if I don't hear from you, the bike WILL NOT BE DONE WHEN PROMISED." Then detail the call history on the work order. But sometimes, I will just do the work. It's on the stand and I just want it in the done pile. We're booked out 3 weeks for service now. Your mechanic, who is barely making a living wage, does not have time to hold your hand while you decide whether or not to spend $50 extra because your bike was banged up coming out of the box. If it bugs you, learn how to do it yourself. BTW, Bike Gallery in Portland does good work.

I'll apologize in advance for the rant.
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Old 06-26-18, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Because quite frankly, putting together a bike in a random corner of an airport without the use of a stand or access to real shop tools is kinda a PITA.

If I ever do a tour in the US that involves shipping a bike, I'll gladly send it to a shop and pick it up ready to go when I get there. Heck, its probably cheaper to BikeFlight it to a shop and have them assemble than to pay domestic airline bike fees anyhow.
Cheaper and easier. Even if you have a cart it is still A PITA to drag a bike through the airport. Not to mention you don't know if it is going to get there. I ship ahead with plenty of time. If there is a screw up or (gulp ) major disaster there is time to straiten it out.
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