Results 1 to 24 of 24
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    9

    Bikesdirect bike assembly difficulty?

    So after stopping biking for roughly 10 years, I am ready to jump back into the sport for leisure. Been lurking the forums a lot for the pass few weeks and have decided to purchase a Motobecane Fantom 29er Elite and have couple of questions if I may please get some assistance.

    1) How difficult is the assembly for someone who hasn't build many things? I have absolutely no problem assembling furnitures and computers etc but never anything with moving parts.

    2) Would you recommend me paying a bike service center $150+ to assemble a bike?

    3) Does a brand new bike require tuning etc? If I do decide to assemble myself, would I still have to drop it off at a LBS for tuning?


    ** I would post the link to the bike but I'm not allow to post links.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    198
    With all the information at your finger tips from the net, It really is not that difficult.

    Me personally I would actually enjoy it!!! It will give you a better knowledge of how your bike works. And you will no longer have to pay people to maintain it.

    Todd

  3. #3
    Bro Mountainbiker
    Reputation: Sheepo5669's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    3,501
    I work as a mechanic. Most people who "assemble" their bikes and bring them to a LBS for tuning usually do it poorly. I typically charge about the same for a customer assembled "tune" as I do for a boxed assembly. The mechanic will probably do most of what you did over again. No offense, but we want the bike sent out the door in proper working order.
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  4. #4
    'Tis but a scratch
    Reputation: huffster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1,868
    From the BD website it appears that what you have to do is put on the front wheel, install pedals, install handlebar and install seat. Seems pretty straight forward and typical for the level of disassembly needed to ship a bike.
    Last edited by huffster; 12-13-2012 at 12:33 PM.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    198
    In the motorcycle industry, the dealer is the last person I trust when my safety is involved. I have personally seen several huge mistakes by the dealer mechanics that could have been fatal.

    For instance:

    Hand tightening the rear axle nut after a tire change.
    Both front calipers coming off while riding down the road at 70+
    Leaving the other set of bolts out of the rider pegs.

    This is why I never let a dealer ever touch my bike.

    Assembling the bike is not rocket science, it takes a little patience and the ability to read.
    I am sure like any good mechanic they all have their tricks. Is it the only way of course not.

    I rebuilt my track bike motor. Had to drop the engine and split the cases. I had never done anything like this before. I said to myself I can read and understand what I am reading. And I know I am as smart as the person making $5 a day to assemble this. Well not only was it a success, but I even figured out some things to make it easier. Even came up with my own ring compressors for $.88. And the proof it was right was hauling butt down the track over 150 mph.

    YOU CAN DO IT!!! YOU JUST HAVE TO TRY

    Todd

  6. #6
    My Brain Hurts!
    Reputation: ProfGumby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    697
    Quote Originally Posted by huffster View Post
    From the BD website it appears that what you have to do is put on the front wheel, install pedals, install handlebar and install seat. Seems pretty straight forward and typical for the level of disassembly needed to ship a bike.
    It is probably not a stupid idea to have the wheels tensioned and trued by a competent shop. Also expect some tweaking to the derailleurs and brakes as part of the setup process. I have had to do this with Just about every mountain bike I have ever owned.

    Things flex, seat, wear in, stretch and need adjustment on a new bike, that is just fact, no matter where it came from or how good the LBS was.
    Remember when we were kids and our Mom's said we could not play in the mud? I'm making up for it now!!

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    9
    I just put one of their cheaper mountain bikes together last week and had to adjust front and rear brake caliper locations (disk brakes) and both derailleurs were wayyy out. It's probably not as good as a competent and experienced bike mechanic could do, but it shifts good now and the brakes work well. I figure (like others said) everything wears in, especially at first, so will try to find a shop to bring it to for an "official" tune-up after some miles get put on it.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    9
    I got a Ti Fly 29er with the Sram XO stuff a few months back. It took me about 3 hours to get it up and running. I went through the major components. The bottom bracket external cups needed to be tightened. The derailler hanger screws were loose. The headset needed a little more grease. The controls needed to be repositioned. I raised the front derailler a mm or two. The rear derailler was in good adjustment. The wheels were true. The only problem I had was a very slow leak in the rear tube. I needed on a T25 Torx and various metric hex wrenches for assembly. The hardest part was getting the rear derailler attached to the hanger. So, I didn't find the job hard and I was pretty confident everything was in good working order.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    197

  10. #10
    My Brain Hurts!
    Reputation: ProfGumby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    697
    Quote Originally Posted by eickmewg View Post
    I got a Ti Fly 29er with the Sram XO stuff a few months back. It took me about 3 hours to get it up and running. I went through the major components. The bottom bracket external cups needed to be tightened. The derailler hanger screws were loose. The headset needed a little more grease. The controls needed to be repositioned. I raised the front derailler a mm or two. The rear derailler was in good adjustment. The wheels were true. The only problem I had was a very slow leak in the rear tube. I needed on a T25 Torx and various metric hex wrenches for assembly. The hardest part was getting the rear derailler attached to the hanger. So, I didn't find the job hard and I was pretty confident everything was in good working order.
    Ya eickmewg, as you say it's not really a difficult task and even the XO stuff needs set up and fitting. I like farting around with my own bikes too and go to my LBS when I fail or get in over my head. Oh and to others reading along, go and ask any competent bike shop...they have to do all of this with many brands they sell.

    I needed to adjust the brakes on my mountain bike, go back in a month or two and get the wheels re trued, and the brakes and shifters adjusted due to cables settling in (stretching). Hell, even the bottom bracket on my road bike had to be tightened. but then that is one of the things you pay for by purchasing a bike from the LBS. They (bike shop) go through the whole bike and set it up as they assemble them. They deal with missing parts or damaged items. John Q customer comes in buys a bike, gets a basic fitting and about a month later a tune up the the bike shop bike....

    With BD, ya gotta kinda do it yourself....
    Remember when we were kids and our Mom's said we could not play in the mud? I'm making up for it now!!

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Piratefly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    91
    I've put together a couple bikes from BD. For the most part, it's quite easy and I haven't had any major issues at all. It comes 80% assembled. BD emails you and gives a few links about building the bike. Anything you need in more detail or what those links don't cover you can find on youtube.

    The first bike was a SS. I was taking it for it's maiden voyage within the hour. The second bike was the Fantom CX. Being a 2x9 it took a little longer to put together. Now dialing it all in took some time. I'm a bike mechanic newbie but confident in my ability. Both front and rear derailleurs took some time to adjust. Now, I've never had a bike with drop bars before so the learning curve of the function of those was the time consuming part. The left hand thumb lever was solid and took a lot of force to click. I had to figure out how to adjust that.

    IMO try putting it together yourself first. And take your time. If it works, great! If it needs to visit the bike doc, hopefully you learned a little in the process.
    Just because you can't hear them scream doesn't mean they don't. Save a plant, eat meat.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Piratefly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    91
    double post
    Just because you can't hear them scream doesn't mean they don't. Save a plant, eat meat.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: paboxcall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    23
    I bought the 600HT last winter on clearance; I wanted a bike for spring gobbler hunting that would handle the logging roads and gas roads and the 600HT fit the bill from a price point and equipment perspective. After shopping the two local shops finding I couldn't come close in price to what I get on the 600HT, I bought online.

    I have limited mechanical ability. So I researched here, youtube, Park Tool and other similar sites. When the box arrived, I panicked a little and lost confidence, calling one of the bike shops for help. When I informed the owner I would pay to have his help, he sighed out loud, then informed me of my unfortunate purchase mistake, and said $80, and maybe in a couple of weeks if he got time. That boosted my confidence again.

    With my laptop set up and connected to the internet, I proceeded to do final assembly using this site, youtube help and Park. It took about 2 hours, and an extra hour when I went to adjust the front derailler cable and straighten it on the tube, I forgot to retighten the tension bolt and the derailler twisted and pulled up the tube when I shifted to test my change (D'Oh!). Resetting that from scratch took about 45 minutes of tinkering and a quick video tutorial but I got it done.

    I bought the Alien multi-tool and a few other things from Park, so I have the tools I need to do maintenance on the trail too. The bike performed flawlessly all spring and summer. One issue was the chain jumping off the front ring when shifting, but a little tightening of the cable fixed that. Since I adjusted the rear brake pads, and adjusted all the shifter cables after their initial break in period.

    Look, if I can do this anyone can. Proceed and have fun.

  14. #14
    My Brain Hurts!
    Reputation: ProfGumby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    697
    "...calling one of the bike shops for help. When I informed the owner I would pay to have his help, he sighed out loud, then informed me of my unfortunate purchase mistake, and said $80, and maybe in a couple of weeks if he got time."

    I know some bike shops can react this way paboxcall. After all he knows he lost a bike sale...but I still think it is poor customer service. I hope for his sake it would be a couple of weeks as he was really, really busy.

    I never expect anyone to drop everything for me when I show up with an issue or call to schedule a repair. But guess what, several shops that sell competing brand lines have dropped everything or scheduled timely repairs and got me going!

    And consider the following with your scenario. All labor, no parts should equal pure profit and a happy customer that needs accessories, gear, tools and future repairs. And maybe your next or upgrade bike too!

    What is he gonna do when you need a new tire, take a dump in your cheerios again and say it might take him 3 or 4 hours to see if he has a tire?

    Again, shop owners, it is your shop and you have the right to do what you want. But an attitude like this one will send guys like me down the road and even more to the internet instead of bothering you...
    Remember when we were kids and our Mom's said we could not play in the mud? I'm making up for it now!!

  15. #15
    Bro Mountainbiker
    Reputation: Sheepo5669's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    3,501
    Quote Originally Posted by eickmewg View Post
    I got a Ti Fly 29er with the Sram XO stuff a few months back. It took me about 3 hours to get it up and running. I went through the major components. The bottom bracket external cups needed to be tightened. The derailler hanger screws were loose. The headset needed a little more grease. The controls needed to be repositioned. I raised the front derailler a mm or two. The rear derailler was in good adjustment. The wheels were true. The only problem I had was a very slow leak in the rear tube. I needed on a T25 Torx and various metric hex wrenches for assembly. The hardest part was getting the rear derailler attached to the hanger. So, I didn't find the job hard and I was pretty confident everything was in good working order.
    I hope you greased the bottom bracket. I have never seen a Bikes Direct bike that came with grease on the threads
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  16. #16
    Bro Mountainbiker
    Reputation: Sheepo5669's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    3,501
    Quote Originally Posted by ProfGumby View Post
    "...calling one of the bike shops for help. When I informed the owner I would pay to have his help, he sighed out loud, then informed me of my unfortunate purchase mistake, and said $80, and maybe in a couple of weeks if he got time."

    I know some bike shops can react this way paboxcall. After all he knows he lost a bike sale...but I still think it is poor customer service. I hope for his sake it would be a couple of weeks as he was really, really busy.

    I never expect anyone to drop everything for me when I show up with an issue or call to schedule a repair. But guess what, several shops that sell competing brand lines have dropped everything or scheduled timely repairs and got me going!

    And consider the following with your scenario. All labor, no parts should equal pure profit and a happy customer that needs accessories, gear, tools and future repairs. And maybe your next or upgrade bike too!

    What is he gonna do when you need a new tire, take a dump in your cheerios again and say it might take him 3 or 4 hours to see if he has a tire?

    Again, shop owners, it is your shop and you have the right to do what you want. But an attitude like this one will send guys like me down the road and even more to the internet instead of bothering you...
    Christmas is the busiest time of year for shops. You very well may have gotten a totally different response if you contacted him in a different month.
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    9
    Well Sheepo5669, I decided to check on those bottom braket threads, and I find you were correct. Previously I had just checked the torque. When I took the BB cups off there was no grease on the threads and they had what looked little just a very small dab of some kind of locktight. So add 15 minutes to my assembly estimate. Also, more to learn the procedure than anything else, I bled the Avid Elixir 9 brakes just to be on the safe side. That was another 30 minutes or so. So far I have been very pleased with my BD Ti 29er and I think I really did save a lot of cash.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Piratefly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    91
    Quote Originally Posted by Sheepo5669 View Post
    I hope you greased the bottom bracket. I have never seen a Bikes Direct bike that came with grease on the threads
    Thanks for the heads up. I'm going to have to check mine now too.
    Just because you can't hear them scream doesn't mean they don't. Save a plant, eat meat.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation: paboxcall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Sheepo5669 View Post
    Christmas is the busiest time of year for shops. You very well may have gotten a totally different response if you contacted him in a different month.
    It was last February when I called. Bike sat in the garage for eight weeks before I was ready to put it together. Wintertime in PA, waiting for the worst to be over.

    Agreed, though, timing is everything. I may have caught that guy at a bad moment, struggling with something or someone in the shop. Regardless, I did the final assembly, made a mistake or two, and learned all about my brakes and fine tuning.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    8
    How common is it for an initial build to have to bleed the brakes?

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    9
    I only have a sample size of one, so others will have to weigh in. I suppose I chose to bleed the brakes out of an abundance of caution and the desire to learn the procedure. I wasn't having any real problems, aside from some brake noise, but decided to do it anyway. As a side note, I did a very wet/muddy ride and the Elixir 9 brakes were very noisy. I replaced the stock pads which I believe were sintered metallic with some Trucker Elixir semi-metallic alloy pads. I took the time to get them properly bedded and the brakes have been silent since. I hope that continues. These replacement pads were very inexpensive.

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    62
    i bought my 400ht from BD less than a year ago. I hadnt had any experience putting together a bike, but im a huge DIY'er. I like to learn things and do things myself. So I read a few online postings a quiet a few videos on you tube. You can find videos filmed by long time bike shop tuners. It wont make up for years of experience but it worked for me. First ride out felt a little weird and I stopped to adjust 5 or 6 times and have had no issues since. If your like me, go for it, learn something new. If your going to be worried and dont trust yourself? pay someone.

    great bike though. just needs a new front shock:P

  23. #23
    WI. Big Boy MTBer
    Reputation: fattybikejones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    643
    Having a few years wrenching under my belt assembly and set up is cake. For the novice, it can be daunting. The main thing to remember is take your time and dont rush things. When in doubt, take it to a pro.

    Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 2
    TREK X CALIBER 6, MOTOBECANE USA MIRAGE SLX

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation: paboxcall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    23
    Today we had an unusual warm spell here in PA, so I put together the Moto 500HT I bought for my wife for Christmas.

    What I found was this 500HT was slightly more assembled than my 600HT was last year. The front rotor was mounted, the brake caliper was mounted, whereas my 600HT I had to mount the front brake and rotor, and cut the cable to length. All of which was no big deal.

    Her 500HT went together smoothly, in about 90 minutes as she wanted to learn how everything went together, so we took our time with her wrenching a little. Took our pair of Motos for a spin around our neighborhood this afternoon and found her chain jumping off the front. Booted up a video on youtube and had it dialed in.

    I'm looking forward to riding with her this year. Nothing technical, lots of rails to trails and I will take the 600HT on my spring turkey hunts.

    Its good all around.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •