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  1. #1
    Agent of tang
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    Buying/installing rear derailleur, LBS or ???

    I know that there are shop owners and employees on here, as well as plenty of other knowledgeable folk, so this seems like a good place to ask. I am sure this general topic has been beaten to death somewhere on these boards. And before anyone says it, I don't have the skills, tools, or the time to do the work myself.

    I think need to replace the rear derailleur on my 575, it's an XTR shadow, I think, but I'm fine with XT; it may be repairable but I don't think so. My questions are:

    It seems like MSRP, which many LBS charge, is of course quite a bit more expensive than what it could be purchased for online. Does the LBS charge to install it too or is that covered (or discounted) if I buy there? Is it the same install price as it would if I brought a derailleur to them? If so, is there a reason (other than the altruistic "support the LBS") to buy the part there, rather than buy it wherever I can find it cheapest and then have the LBS install it?

    I want to support the LBS, and I'd love to have the money to not care, but money is really tight right now, and I'm wondering if I'm being a fool if I just walk in to the LBS and buy off the shelf.

    Flame away.

  2. #2
    bacon! bacon! bacon!
    Reputation: SkaredShtles's Avatar
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    Poor lawyers.

    I'd recommend contacting Kaj directly at Full Cycles. He's good people and I'd guess would at least be able to answer your question honestly...

    Have you considered selling the 575 and getting a Giant Reign? Lots of money left over for beer.

  3. #3
    Agent of tang
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    This lawyer doesn't make much more than many teachers. And pays a mortgage in Boulder.

  4. #4
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    Do you have a LBS? If you do why not ask them? They are more than aware of online retailers so it's no biggie if you ask them. They want your business and might be willing to wiggle a bit on their price and might offer free installation.

    Sometimes those online deals are not so great after they hit you with ridiculous shipping fees and if you have to pay someone to put it on the savings might not be worth it.

    I am guessing if you bought it from the shop they would put in on right away while you wait but if you dropped off your bike with a new in the box derailleur from an online vendor you might have to wait a while to get your bike back which means time off the bike and another trip and gas money back to the LBS.

    I am sure i will get flamed by some for this but creating a relationship with your LBS can be a great thing!

    There have been times where my weekend would have been shot but the mechanics saved the weekend by taking the time or even staying late to get my bike rolling. You can NEVER put a dollar amount on something like that.

    I know i pay a little more at my LBS compared to online retailers but i can honestly say they have my back when i can't figure stuff out and that happens more than i would like to admit and my bike does not have gears or a rear shock.

  5. #5
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    Are you a PD? If not and you're a lawyer, and you're not pulling bank:
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
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  6. #6
    Agent of tang
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    Pau11y, the general public perception of lawyers and the reality of lawyers' jobs and salaries are separated by a huge gap. It bugs the crap out of me that people assume we all make oodles of bucks. No, I'm not a PD, but there are far more lawyers out there not pulling bank than you realize. I'm not saying I'm destitute, and I made all my life choices with my eyes open so I don't want to sound like I'm complaining (I'm not, just explaining), but I sure ain't making close to 6 figures, and there's that pesky Boulder mortgage to pay.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bagwhan View Post
    Pau11y, the general public perception of lawyers and the reality of lawyers' jobs and salaries are separated by a huge gap. It bugs the crap out of me that people assume we all make oodles of bucks. No, I'm not a PD, but there are far more lawyers out there not pulling bank than you realize. I'm not saying I'm destitute, and I made all my life choices with my eyes open so I don't want to sound like I'm complaining (I'm not, just explaining), but I sure ain't making close to 6 figures, and there's that pesky Boulder mortgage to pay.
    Doooode! Go commando for a day! Those panties are REALLY crawling up there! I was joking for the love of all things...Boulder! I was going to say 'funny' but then remember the result of the last thread you can I posted in
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
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  8. #8
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    Call me what you will, but I'm actually a tiny bit irked when a shop doesn't take even a "little" off MSRP. I'm talking about $50 on a $1200 bike, or $1 on a $25 part/item. I mean I know the margin is there. It's not even the money, it's about the warm fuzzy feeling that you get when you got a deal. Nobody likes to feel like they got ripped off or "could have done better." It's like paying sticker price for a new car, then hearing someone you know got the same car for $5k less because they were better at negotiating. I've seen some shops even sell for above MSRP.

    As for buying parts through bike shops, I'll pay a little more for it if they have it in stock and I can pick it up right now. That's convenience/impatience you pay for. I'll even buy stuff and pay a bit more from local guys if they have great service and can get me close to what I can get online. Being that I do my own maintenance and install my own parts, I don't mind shopping online. I'd love to buy local all the time. Problem is most shops can't afford to keep large inventories. If you're going to tell me that you'll order it for me, yet charge me a ton more, I might as well just order online. I can't justify paying more for the same product and the same service. I'll get it at the same time, for much cheaper, and I'll install it myself. There's certain things I can get insane deals on, like 50% off MSRP or more. I know the local shops can't match that and I wouldn't expect them to.

    We all have to balance our desire to support local businesses with our wallets. How many bike shop employees would be riding around on $5k+ bikes if they didn't get discounts on them? I don't think it's always an either or thing. You just have to balance the service you're getting, how well the people treat you and take care of you, and what they're charging, versus how much money you can save. Only you can put a value on the intangibles.

    Even if you can't always support a bike shop with your wallet, you can certainly support them with your voice. I've had some bad experiences at certain shops, so whenever I get great service from friendly people, I always recommend that shop to every biker I know. Being that I'm a ride organizer for a large meetup group of bikers of all skill levels, that's pretty good advertising.
    Last edited by BaeckerX1; 06-23-2011 at 09:53 AM.
    Gotta get up to get down.
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  9. #9
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    You think you need a new rear derailleur...maybe you just have a bent hanger - or a kink in the cable. Your LBS wil be able to look at it and tell you what you need. Maybe you'll go in, they'll take a look, straighten your hanger, shake your hand and thank you for stopping by? If you buy a RD online before talking to someone who knows, you may end up buying a derailleur and they'll tell you that you still need new cables, housing, and a hanger.

  10. #10
    Agent of tang
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    Doooode! Go commando for a day! Those panties are REALLY crawling up there!

    Sorry about that, I'm just a little stressed about money right now. So some dude telling me I should be earning more than I do doesn't help!

  11. #11
    ride
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    What jsj3831 said. First thing is to determine if you really need a new rear der or not, then go from there. I probably operate a little different than most shops, but I msrp accessories, etc, but sell ders and other high end stuff for about going online rate. If you were to bring me a der that you got online, you'd have to pay full pop for labor to install. If you bought it from me, I'd give you a deal on the install, maybe a couple bucks or a 6 pack. But first bring it to a reputable shop to see if they can ascertain whether you need to spend the bucks on a der in the first place.
    Redstone Cyclery
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  12. #12
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    Here ya go you humorless old geezer:
    Sram: X9 - http://www.blueskycycling.com/produc...eur_9Speed.htm
    X7 - http://www.blueskycycling.com/produc...lleur_2010.htm
    Shimano: too expensive, f'getaboutit.

    I missed you were running *****mano, so you'll need shifters too: http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/128...COMBO-2010.htm

    Edit: here's a *****mano: http://denver.craigslist.org/bik/2456427604.html
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    Here ya go you humorless old geezer:
    Sram: X9 - http://www.blueskycycling.com/produc...eur_9Speed.htm
    X7 - http://www.blueskycycling.com/produc...lleur_2010.htm
    Shimano: too expensive, f'getaboutit.
    But then he has to change his shifters too which is more expense.
    Gotta get up to get down.
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  14. #14
    bacon! bacon! bacon!
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    Quote Originally Posted by bagwhan View Post
    this lawyer doesn't make much more than many teachers. And pays a mortgage in boulder.
    All I can say is SIUP.

  15. #15
    Beer Me!
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    I do most of my own work on my bikes, but still "regular" local shops for little odds and ends (cables, brake fluid, gu, lube, etc...) I bring in the occasional 6 pack of ok beer and whammo, instant deals when you are in a bind. For example, blew out my Fox 36, didn't want to send it in for a rebuild, didn't want to screw it up myself, got it done for pennies on the dollar at my local shop. Spent maybe 30bucks over several years on beer for the mechanics, probably got 100s off of labor and parts. I buy a ton of crap online, but still try to keep a solid relationship with the local guys, send them customers, build up there rep etc...

    Edit: that doesn't help you right now, but might in the future.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ignazjr View Post
    What jsj3831 said. First thing is to determine if you really need a new rear der or not, then go from there. I probably operate a little different than most shops, but I msrp accessories, etc, but sell ders and other high end stuff for about going online rate. If you were to bring me a der that you got online, you'd have to pay full pop for labor to install. If you bought it from me, I'd give you a deal on the install, maybe a couple bucks or a 6 pack. But first bring it to a reputable shop to see if they can ascertain whether you need to spend the bucks on a der in the first place.
    Speaking of... I really like the way Dave does business. He's a great guy with quality service. His prices are good as well and you'll always get great knowledge without the attitude. I'd definitely recommend giving him a call. If his bike shop was closer to me, he'd probably get sick of seeing me. Truth.

    Being in Boulder, you're not that far from his shop up in Lyons.
    Gotta get up to get down.
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  17. #17
    Beer Me!
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    if you watch chainlove.com they have been posting the occasional RD and Shifters for about 70% off.

  18. #18
    killin clear creek
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    As a broke bastard myself I can honestly say that having a relationship with the LBS WILL pay off if you're not inclined to work on your bike yourself (I'll do stuff here & there, but prefer to have someone like Nick or Mike at Mojo actually do things RIGHT instead of me cobbling it!)

    If you talk to them, they'll likely help you out a bit, just don't be afraid to speak up. Like was said above, you never know, you might not even need one!

    As someone who pays for sled & diesel repairs pretty regularly, I'm AMAZED by how reasonable bike shops are on a consistent basis. Even walking into a shop here in Breck that I'd never been in before, I walked out paying 1/3 what I expected to... give them a chance, you can always just head home to order it online later!

    Or... just get the thing & post a thread offering a 12'er for whoever puts it on for you... you'll likely find help quick that way too
    Quote Originally Posted by thump View Post
    How about we take the "let it burn approach" with the rotting cesspool of the Denver metro?

  19. #19
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    Allow me to solve all your problems in one simple post.

    1. Visit your local shop. Introduce yourself and ask if you need a new derailleur.

    2. If you do, buy it, along with a how-to book and the required tools from the shop. (supports the shop)

    3. Ask if they'll show you how to install a new derailleur and dial it in. Share a 6-pack with the mechanic an pay attention. This helps you develop a nice relationship with your LBS and soak up some mechanical knowledge.

    4. Next time you break a derailleur, buy it where you want. Be a man, and replace it at home.

    By following these steps, you fix your bike, get to know your LBS, acquire some tools, learn some skills, and free up future time to spend with your family and complain about having an expensive Boulder mortgage to a bunch of guys who can't even afford to live near Boulder...

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bagwhan View Post

    Sorry about that, I'm just a little stressed about money right now. So some dude telling me I should be earning more than I do doesn't help!
    Lawyerman, a rear mech should be only 10 mins, and that's w/o cracking a chain...unless your cable is frayed. If so, then 15 minutes. BUT, while you have the rear mech off, you should check to see how well aligned the hanger is...this is where, if you don't have the tool, a shop is going to hook you up. Beer bribe works well here.
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
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  21. #21
    Beer Me!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    you should check to see how well aligned the hanger is...this is where, if you don't have the tool, a shop is going to hook you up.
    Seconded, if your RD is toast, so is your hangar. Your hangar is probably screwed regardless if your RD is broken.

  22. #22
    Digital Toast
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    I'd also recommend going and seeing Dave. You can tell a honest wrench by what he works for. Dave works for beer.(If ya buy the parts from him) Plus he's a no-BS guy. He won't up sell you trying to make a buck. He'll let you know if it's broke or not and what it's gonna cost to fix if it is. He's always busy, but somehow he always makes time to be personable and shoot the $hit with me and my son's when were lucky enough to make it up that way. So run to Redstone Cycles and let him have a look.

  23. #23
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    I don't think the hanger is toast, because the derailleur didn't take a hit that I am aware of. It seems as if an internal spring failed, whatever it is that tensions the derailleur. Here's a shot:


  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wiggs View Post
    2. If you do, buy it, along with a how-to book and the required tools from the shop. (supports the shop)

    ...acquire some tools...
    I'd only recommend going this route if you have a fleet of bikes to work on...at least more than 2.
    Because this:

    ...costs 50% of a XT rear mech and you'll only use it once in a blue moon and isn't worth it (unless you crash a lot). It's a pretty important tool if you want your shifting to be 100%.
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
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  25. #25
    Beer Me!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bagwhan View Post
    I don't think the hanger is toast, because the derailleur didn't take a hit that I am aware of. It seems as if an internal spring failed, whatever it is that tensions the derailleur. ]
    That guy might be able to be fixed. Heck the LBS might even have a dead RD, to canibalize parts off of to fix it, if they know your super tight on cash. I say (like most everyone else) take it in, see what they say.

    Agreed with the hanger, probably still good.

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