Why the ripp-off prices for bicycles and repairs?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Why the ripp-off prices for bicycles and repairs?

    You can buy an enduro, dual sport or motocross motorcycle for less than a top line mountain bike, what is with that? The motorcycles have an engine which is far more complex and requires far more machining and labor to assemble. The excessive cost is not justifiable when you look at a motorcycle simply because there is far less technology, materials and labor in making bicycles, and they sell way more bikes that motorcycles. It is time people began demanding more for their money.

    And I can get the forks on a Honda CR-125 rebuilt for a fraction of the cost of Marzocchi Bomber forks, and the CR-125 are also far more complex.

    It is very apparent that bike shops way overcharge for very simple and easy work, especially when you compare that with the cost of having equivalent motorcycle repairs done. It appears it is simple price gouging as I see no extra value, especially since I just did a set of Marzocchis: they are child's play to rebuild compared to doing motorcycle forks.

    I cannot get over the ridiculous prices and the shameless way that these bearded hipster so-called bike mechanics are taking advantage of their customers. I consider this dishonest because they are overcharging.

    Even motorcycle shops sell bikes practically at cost, but they do not charge the exorbitant repair rates trying to make their rent. It high time we hold the bike shops feet to fire and start asking them to justify why they price gouge.

  2. #2
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    You're the first person to ever ask this question.
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    https://www.bicycleretailer.com/inte...ssion-possible

    In Taiwan, another kind of A-Team has been tackling another seemingly impossible mission: reviving the island nation’s bicycle industry in the face of aggressive price competition from mainland China.

    Taiwan’s top two bicycle manufacturers, Merida and Giant, set aside their competitive instincts and invited 11 top parts and components suppliers to join a new association—the A-Team. Their mission was revitalizing the domestic bicycle industry by swiftly moving up-market and focusing on high-end products instead of chasing volume.

    The A-Team philosophy has paid off big so far. In six years, Taiwan manufacturers have doubled the average value of every bicycle produced even as the total number of bicycles exported has stayed flat.

    In 2007, Taiwan exported more than $1 billion worth of bicycles—the highest value since 1995.
    People advocate to keep this industry alive, afraid of what happens if it crashes... as if nothing better could replace it.

    Organizations that were once great, built off of technocratic merits, renown for fine products that were meticulously designed to the smallest detail by visionary engineers, tend to get handed off to financial and bureaucratic types that bleed it off to fill their pockets, before being abandoned. People who've seen this pattern before genuinely worry when organizations "sell-out"... they pay the asking prices for certain highly engineered stuff to keep this spirit of technocracy alive, but the population in general only has so much discretionary spending money, which gets them to consider the undercutters that have sold out...

    How much are they charging for repairs? A shop near me bases their rates off of a basic labor rate of $15-25/hr, plus extras like fluid change and parts. That's a lot less than other trade skills. If you can do it yourself, then good for you. Not everyone has a good mechanical IQ.
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  4. #4
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    Don't like price of bikes ,don't buy one. Don't like the price of service, do it yourself.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    I cannot get over the ridiculous prices and the shameless way that these bearded hipster so-called bike mechanics
    please stop before you hurt yourself. these are working people trying to make a living just like you. most of them are running small businesses that are being crushed by bigger businesses on one side, taxes on another, and unrealistic expectations from customers like you all at the same time. as someone who used to be one of these bicycle mechanics (a career choice I look seriously and did with pride, despite being poor the whole time), I've looked at the numbers, and most bike shops actually lose money on service.

    if you think their prices are outrageous, learn to do it yourself. if bikes are too expensive, go manufacture parts in your garage. your attitude and reliance on stereotypes kind of make you sound like a jerk. it really set the tone for the kind of stuff you're going to post here, being your first post.

    yeah, bike stuff is expensive. that sucks, we all get it. for the kind of riding discussed on this site, it's almost all for leisure. if you want to play with fancy toys, pay fancy toy prices.

    I am very tempted to copy and paste your first post here: https://www.reddit.com/r/ChoosingBeggars

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    You can buy an enduro, dual sport or motocross motorcycle for less than a top line mountain bike, what is with that? The motorcycles have an engine which is far more complex and requires far more machining and labor to assemble. The excessive cost is not justifiable when you look at a motorcycle simply because there is far less technology, materials and labor in making bicycles, and they sell way more bikes that motorcycles. It is time people began demanding more for their money.

    And I can get the forks on a Honda CR-125 rebuilt for a fraction of the cost of Marzocchi Bomber forks, and the CR-125 are also far more complex.

    It is very apparent that bike shops way overcharge for very simple and easy work, especially when you compare that with the cost of having equivalent motorcycle repairs done. It appears it is simple price gouging as I see no extra value, especially since I just did a set of Marzocchis: they are child's play to rebuild compared to doing motorcycle forks.

    I cannot get over the ridiculous prices and the shameless way that these bearded hipster so-called bike mechanics are taking advantage of their customers. I consider this dishonest because they are overcharging.

    Even motorcycle shops sell bikes practically at cost, but they do not charge the exorbitant repair rates trying to make their rent. It high time we hold the bike shops feet to fire and start asking them to justify why they price gouge.
    You are simply wrong.
    Good luck.

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    It is something called "economies of scale". Despite what the perception may be, very few high end bikes are sold compared to motorcycles. This means the cost of tooling, machinery, marketing etc. is spread out across fewer units. For a more thorough explanation check out the link. Educating yourself on how economics works is always a good thing.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economies_of_scale
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
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    How much are they charging for repairs? A shop near me bases their rates off of a basic labor rate of $15-25/hr, plus extras like fluid change and parts. That's a lot less than other trade skills. If you can do it yourself, then good for you. Not everyone has a good mechanical IQ.
    $15-25/hr, really? At that rate, I probably would do very little of my own work. That must be a one man shop as I don't see how they could pay the mechanic and the shop make enough income to keep the lights on.


    I believe the majority of bikes sold are actually cheap bike-shaped objects that cost well less than a moto. As mentioned, the number of high end bikes is much less. But you don't have to buy a super expensive bike to have a great bike that is fun to ride.
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    IMHO, professional services rates should be at least two times cost for a healthy business. That cost includes labor, but labor is not the only expense. The value proposition contains more than just the skill. You are also buying time when you take your bike to the shop. If you have the skill and the time, the value of labor is lower. Do it yourself in that case.

    For goods, selling at cost is absurd. Depending on the arrangement the shop took on the risk of selling which needs compensation. Holding costs add up. Labor time to sell adds up. All that needs to be accounted for with the final sales price.

    It is a business, and as mentioned above in many cases a VERY small one that is often core to the cycling community. People work there, people who are also trying to live a life and, you know, buy things from other businesses. Without a profit margin all of that is impossible and the shop closes.

    Cycling is a low-volume sales industry with pretty decent-sized competition between manufactures, for frames at least. Prices will be higher than other verticals. 10k bikes dominate the shows and reviews, but those are not the majority of the sales.

    If the cost of entry is too high, don't enter. If a shop overcharges for bad work don't go there. This is what the customer is always right really means. The market will tell the truth eventually regarding price and demand. I think most of us would love lower prices on parts and frames and have found mechanics we trust, or skills we can use at home.

    Cycling is an expensive sport. It is definitely NOT a low-tech one, even for RSS29er wierdos. There are bad businesses and people in any industry. Find a good shop or stick to motorcycles. Broad generalizations don't get you down trail very far at all.

  10. #10
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    $15-$25 an hour?

    Shops here usually have some sort of flat rate for common things like tune ups and brake bleeds but charge $80 an hour for other stuff.

    When I worked in the auto industry we marked up parts 200% and charged $110 an hour.

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    subscribed.

    Waiting for the OP comment within 24 hours or I'm calling it a troll thread and closing it.

  12. #12
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    Why the ripp-off prices for bicycles and repairs?-9ce0dd4b815740fd082f67d641735df7.jpg
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    Pretty sure the vast majority of bike sales are $500 or less. High end bikes are in the extreme minority of sales.

    Also consider show room motocross bikes are basically the cheapest end of the spectrum like the $500 mtb is for us. The $7,000+ wonder bike is more equivelant to a $100,000 factory team motocross bike.

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    You can buy a squirrel, rat meat or roaches for less than a top line wagyu beef, what is with that? The squirrel meat has all the protein we need which is just as complex and requires far more hunting and labor to aqcuire. The excessive cost is not justifiable when you look at squirrel meat simply because there is far less work and labor in cutting squirrel meats. It is time people began demanding more for their money.

    And I can get a pound of squirrel meat for a fraction of the cost of a cut of wagyu forks, and the squirrel is more abundant.

    It is very apparent that butcher shops way overcharge for very simple and easy work, especially when you compare that with the cost of having equivalent squirrel meat prepared. It appears it is simple price gouging as I see no extra value, especially since I just cooked up a couple squirrels: they are child's play to prep and cook compared to doing wagyu.

    I cannot get over the ridiculous prices and the shameless way that these bearded hipster so-called butchers bend over their customers and don't even offer them some Vaseline...it is just wrong and they are taking advantage of their customers. I consider this dishonest because they are overcharging.

    Even hillbilly meat shops sell squirrel meat practically at cost, but they do not charge the exorbitant prep rates trying to make their rent. It high time we hold the butcher shops feet to fire and start asking them to justify why they price gouge.

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    Installing a pressfit bb for a customer takes me approx 10 minutes. You're not only paying for my time and know-how, but also for my tools - $200 MSRP for the Park Tool BBP-1.2 (obviously I get it at a lower cost).

    You can pay the MSRP for the tools, and mangle the bb/frame yourself.

    Why the ripp-off prices for bicycles and repairs?-10575456_738645886172972_3268665054071270584_o.jpg


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    Not a troll here, just an outside view from a motorcycle mechanic who knows how much harder it is to work on motorcycles and can't believe how much more the top end boutique bike shops gouge their customers for. Like I said, you can buy a dual sport for less money and get it repaired and serviced for quite a bit less as well.

    That is why I do my own work on bicycles as the value simply is not there when it comes to taking it to a shop.

    Far more bicycles are sold than motorcycles so it is impossible to justify the huge disparity in the pricing for service and parts.

    Due to that, I am contemplating opening a shop and focusing on service only, and aftermarket parts. The bicycle service business if far more lucrative than motorcycle repair, and you can easily get around $125/ hour or more from what I see they charge for repairs. This would leav me plenty of room to undercut the other shops, make good money, and save customers a bundle when it comes to service.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sickmak90 View Post
    $15-$25 an hour?

    Shops here usually have some sort of flat rate for common things like tune ups and brake bleeds but charge $80 an hour for other stuff.

    When I worked in the auto industry we marked up parts 200% and charged $110 an hour.
    When I worked at shops, it seemed the shop rate was around $60-$80+/hr depending on the location of the shop (more expensive location meant higher shop rate to cover expenses). And yeah, common services were often given flat fees, but those were all based on the shop rate and the expected/avg amount of time to perform those tasks.

    Also, at nearly every shop where I have worked, service is what kept the place open because it was often steadier. Though some places with long winters also see marked drops in service, too, and this is why so many shops that experience that also sell things like ski gear and home fitness stuff to get them through the winter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    Not a troll here, just an outside view from a motorcycle mechanic who knows how much harder it is to work on motorcycles and can't believe how much more the top end boutique bike shops gouge their customers for. Like I said, you can buy a dual sport for less money and get it repaired and serviced for quite a bit less as well.

    That is why I do my own work on bicycles as the value simply is not there when it comes to taking it to a shop.

    Far more bicycles are sold than motorcycles so it is impossible to justify the huge disparity in the pricing for service and parts.

    Due to that, I am contemplating opening a shop and focusing on service only, and aftermarket parts. The bicycle service business if far more lucrative than motorcycle repair, and you can easily get around $125/ hour or more from what I see they charge for repairs. This would leav me plenty of room to undercut the other shops, make good money, and save customers a bundle when it comes to service.
    The two industries are not remotely comparable, except that both bicycles and motorcycles have two wheels.

    Good luck in your endeavors, but you're going to need a better education in the bicycle industry if you expect to be successful.

  19. #19
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    Most people have no idea what is involved in fixing a bike, so I see alot of people getting taken advantage of in the bicycle service industry, nd it is a shame.

    Most of the special tools can be purchased much cheaper from Motion Pro, as they are motorcycle tools but many will work on bicycles too.

    An old fork seal can be used to drive in the new one, no special tool needed.

    Most motorcycle mechanics are certified and have been to factory sponsored and/or certified trade schools, not so for bike shop wrenches in most cases.

    Guys, the value simply is not there when compared to other industries. The professionalism is lacking, or all over the map, and pricing for repairs varies wildly for the same job, depending on who you go to. It is far cheaper just to buy a new bike in many cases due to the price of parts and service for the majority of bicycles out there.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    Due to that, I am contemplating opening a shop and focusing on service only, and aftermarket parts. The bicycle service business if far more lucrative than motorcycle repair, and you can easily get around $125/ hour or more from what I see they charge for repairs. This would leav me plenty of room to undercut the other shops, make good money, and save customers a bundle when it comes to service.
    with the attitude you expressed toward bicycle mechanics earlier, I'm not sure any will want to work for you. best of luck to ya. right now, no one who read your first post will believe that you're serious about this. when you open your shop, be sure to tell us about the experience. I have taken a screenshot of your first post, so I'll be sure to share that with your future employees and customers.

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    you're right about the lack of training and certification among bike mechanics, though. depending on the shop and the region, it's hard to find qualified mechanics and the ones who are really good often find ways to take those skills someplace where they are paid better for their efforts. to the best of my knowledge, mechanics in Europe are expected to have formal training as tradespeople and are paid better as a result. that's a totally different economy, though.

    the industry and the customers are both partly to blame for this. if you want a qualified mechanic, you have to pay for that level of service. customers often view bikes as "toys" that are "easy to work on" but won't do their own work. these are "choosing beggars." a good bike shop has to employ people who can change stroller tires all day, but also know how to diagnose the motor on an electric bike, and pick the right components for a 50 year old road bike. it's a huge range of skills that takes many years to become competent.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    you're right about the lack fo training and certification among bike mechanics, though. depending on the shop and the region, it's hard to find qualified mechanics and the ones who are really good often find ways to take those skills someplace where they are paid better for their efforts.
    Yep. bike shops don't pay enough to mechanics to warrant certifications. A guy I know who owns a shop is looking for a bike mechanic with certs to be his head mechanic and he's been looking for months.

    Anyone who's invested enough in servicing bikes to get certs can find better opportunities that aren't the local bike shop. Because bike shops don't charge enough for service to be able to pay mechanics enough for a high level of professionalism.

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    I'll bite, even though I still think we are all getting trolled.

    As most people alluded to, most shops are not selling high end bikes at the rate you think they are.
    I am constantly asked to find people their first or second mountain bike. Do you know the price range I get? $500 is the most common. I reply that it almost isn't worth it unless you spend $1000 at this point. But most people won't or can't save up $1000 for a bike, so I am stuck finding used beaters for them.

    Solid bike can be had from roughly $2000-3000. I would say the majority of bikes you see on the trails are 5k or less.

    Now I live near Aspen, so that reality gets twisted pretty quick. Saw a kid yesterday no older than 13 on a $6k Revel Rail and my buddy said he saw him the day before on a probably $8k Why Cycles bike.

    Again the 8k+ bikes are the equivalent of a pro superbike that is far more expensive than what you are alluding to.

    As far as what shops charge, that has a lot to do with the fact that shop work is what keeps the LBS open these days. They are selling bikes, but again not a lot of the top of the line models and they have to compete with DTC bikes. So they have to make their money in labor. And they will make it off the people who bought the $500-$1000 bike that is going to be fully of problems from the get go and those people are pretty unlikely to know how or want to work on their bikes.

    I would say maybe 10% of people who ride MTB actually work on their bikes themselves. I think I might even be pretty generous there, but whatever that number is it is probably close to the percentage that work on their own cars. Maybe slightly higher. So LBS makes money off of labor. Kudos to them. They just need to do it right and get off their high horse about it, but that is another topic that has been beaten to death on another day.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    $15-25/hr, really? At that rate, I probably would do very little of my own work. That must be a one man shop as I don't see how they could pay the mechanic and the shop make enough income to keep the lights on.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sickmak90 View Post
    $15-$25 an hour?

    Shops here usually have some sort of flat rate for common things like tune-ups and brake bleeds but charge $80 an hour for other stuff.

    When I worked in the auto industry we marked up parts 200% and charged $110 an hour.
    They had a big menu of upfront pricing for common tasks, but for "general misc labor", they posted an hourly rate. This was in the New England area, like Chain line cycles NH. I think I had very reasonable prices from Retro City Cycles in Orlando too.

    Some of them certainly did go out of business. I miss them. A bunch of Hudson Valley NY ones. I recall one in SoCal, IE Bikes, that did my tire up tubeless for like $10 each wheel, ghetto style split tube. No joke. I couldn't believe it. I once asked if they had a softer coil spring for a rear shock, and they opened up a big drawer and they flicked through a bunch of old springs, and said, nah I don't think I got one in your size. Seemed like they were about to swap it for free. Was just some rattly old '06 Kona Dawg that got locked up outside getting this treatment.

    Another shop offered complete tune-ups for like $80, getting like a royal treatment that made the bike ride like new. It was glorious. The cleaning alone was impressive. I recall explaining disc brake rub, and they asked to see my bike. I brought it in, they took it in the back for 5 minutes. Didn't see what happened, but my bike was wheeled out. I spun the wheel, and I was like woah... no charge. Granted, I visited at least monthly and spent quite a bit with 'em, I think they do this for many of their customers. They're still around, but their prices have increased and I have only been there like 4 times in the past 2 years.

    $80 seems like what I'd pay a trade skill profession and auto mechanic.
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    Dunning-Kruger full Effect in this thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    Not a troll here, just an outside view from a motorcycle mechanic
    Thanks for confirming it wasn't a troll. I don't agree with what your saying but it's good to know your not just doing it for sh!ts'n'giggles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post

    Most of the special tools can be purchased much cheaper from Motion Pro, as they are motorcycle tools but many will work on bicycles too.
    I'm intrigued! Please share what "most" of these tools are (other than common tools such as allen/torx/metric wrenches/screwdrivers etc. which are relatively cheap wherever you buy them).

    I'd love to acquire a "motorcycle" truing stand and save money, or even a heavy duty "motorcycle" repair stand that'll work for bicycles! That motorcycle crown race remover is hella cheap, as well as the derailleur hanger alignment tool.

    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    It is far cheaper just to buy a new bike in many cases due to the price of parts and service for the majority of bicycles out there.
    If by majority, you mean Next/Magna/Huffy?! You complain about the excessive prices of bicycles, but it's cheaper to buy a new bike than repair it? I must be doing it wrong, need to raise my rates!
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    Ikea used to sell bikes too. What Ikea did for furniture... well, the parts that they didn't make themselves (Continental branded Belt drive system, and SRAM Automatix 2-spd rear hub) doomed it.

    Perhaps the OP would be interested in the Sur Ron... it's about close as a MX can get to a mountain bike, without being pedalable like a bicycle, with MX pricing and tech.

    Lowly pedestrian bicycles and their low tech, charging exorbitant prices... reminds me of the people comparing PCs to laptops, tablets, and smart phones, and the associated the repair issues.
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    Cost
    Durability
    Weight

    You only get to choose two of the three. With motorcycles, engine power is ample on even low end bikes and easier developed in the higher performance categories. With bicycles and the relatively fixed engine power, weight gets very high priority. As terrain riding styles increase in severity, the durability factor comes up in priority.

    As far as the labor rate goes, all motorcycle repairs I've ever paid for used a rate at or higher than auto repairs.

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    Top quote the genius of Kieth Bontrager: "Strong, Light, Cheap... Pick two".

    It doesn't just hold true for bikes and bike parts, it's a general engineering principle.

    An d to be transparent: Made a very small edit to the original post (and a reply that quoted it), in no way changed the context of the post.

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    Labor rates for automotive repairs can be all over the place too. I've seen variations of hundreds of dollars for the same job. Suspension installation for a current gen GTI can go as low as $200 and get as high as $900. They use the same method and the same tools.

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    The OP's original post reminds me of a politician's rant against privately owned businesses and their "greedy" efforts to make a profit. A professional politician who has never run a business himself. I hope he figures out how economics works, otherwise he might become a politician.

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    Bike shops go out of business because they charge peanuts. They charge peanuts because people wont pay more.

    You can make a decent amount of money in the absolute tip top of the high end bike industry. Suspension tuning and high end wheel building is profitable... if you're good at it, and more importantly good at business.

    Trying to do tuneups on huffys for $100 a pop is a nightmare, and the reason bike shops fold left and right. Shops dont overcharge, theres just no money in that stuff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DeadGrandpa View Post
    The OP's original post reminds me of a politician's rant against privately owned businesses and their "greedy" efforts to make a profit. A professional politician who has never run a business himself. I hope he figures out how economics works, otherwise he might become a politician.
    There are plenty of greedy businesses making gross amounts of profit at their employees expense... this isnt that, at all. Owning a bike shop means you're probably scraping by for most of the year. At best its enough to pay for a decent place to live. No one is making millions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Bike shops go out of business because they charge peanuts. They charge peanuts because people wont pay more.

    You can make a decent amount of money in the absolute tip top of the high end bike industry. Suspension tuning and high end wheel building is profitable... if you're good at it, and more importantly good at business.

    Trying to do tuneups on huffys for $100 a pop is a nightmare, and the reason bike shops fold left and right. Shops dont overcharge, theres just no money in that stuff.
    No joke...those bikes are the ones that often need the most attention. The poor quality of the frame and components often means they can't be made to work as well as a more expensive bike, and it often takes longer to make them work as well as they can. Doesn't help that 99% of them weren't assembled to a high standard in the first place. And then what's the point when the service (parts plus labor) costs more than another bike of the same quality? Yay for disposable culture.

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    *Insert awesome strap reference here.*
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    ^ and then the customer isn't going to be happy because they just paid a very large percentage of the purchase price for a tune up and the bike still functions poorly. Bike shop may get paid for their time but then they have an unhappy customer. No one wins.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    ^ and then the customer isn't going to be happy because they just paid a very large percentage of the purchase price for a tune up and the bike still functions poorly. Bike shop may get paid for their time but then they have an unhappy customer. No one wins.
    How does tge joke go, How do you make a million bucks running a bike shop? Start with 2 million.
    OP, please by all means open your own service shop!
    As been said, the big majority of bikes sold are less than $500, and bulk of repairs are low end repairs on such.
    Price of bikes? Yeah mine was a lot, but frame and lots of bits are carbon, carbon frame is laid by hand, they dont have machines that do that. Yeah, by Vietnamese hands, but by humans hands nevertheless.
    Price of bike tires do kind of bother me sometimes, they cost as much as low/base end car tires and dont last as long.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post

    Trying to do tuneups on huffys for $100 a pop is a nightmare, and the reason bike shops fold left and right. Shops dont overcharge, theres just no money in that stuff.
    I've worked in shops that have a posted rule for customers to read that "we don't work on those bikes." It's never worth the shop's time or the customer's money. That's kind of a luxury for the shop to be able to turn away work, but it often works in the shop's favor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by driver bob View Post
    Top quote the genius of Kieth Bontrager: "Strong, Light, Cheap... Pick two".

    .
    Rocky Robinson, fastest man ever on two wheels. Speed cost! how fast do you want to go?

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    Whatever the market will bear.

    Welcome to the world of mountain biking where people think their boutique frame is special even though it has shi! tolerances and came out of the same overseas factory as some lame brand. We will pay thousands for glorified plastic wheels that crack. We gizz on ourselves over wider axle standards that do nothing but cause more impacts on our 11 speed, I mean 12 speed over priced derailleurs. We'll pay 100 bucks for bearings in cup that have a good chance of being counterfeit. We'll pay 90 bucks for a tire, and another 90 for a pool noodle to go inside. And don't forget the glorified glitter glue for a buck an ounce. Don't forget to pick a wheel size and be a dic about it. Also clips of flats. You must pick one and be a dic about your choice. If you pick flats, you have to buy 5.10 or you suck. You also must pay 150 or more for your pedals our you and your cheap pedals suck. Happy trails! Enjoy all the wide machine built sanitized trails that used to be single track! You're now officially a mountain biker! You may say bro now if you would like.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    please stop before you hurt yourself.
    lol.....

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    Not trolling, just disgusted with the outrageous prices they get for bikes and service when compared to a small 250cc and under motorcycles.

    Make a whell truing stand by zip tying a coat hanger or piece of wire to your fork, just that simple, no special fixtures required.

    Sections of PVC pipe and sockets work for almost any size seal driver or bearing driver, again, no special tools are required.

    A wire C clip can easily be removed using an awl , pick, small screw driver, or needle nose.

    Motion Pro makes an adjustable spanner that will handle almost all of the steering heads and crank set nuts.

    And as far as threats go (like the one above) they are a crime, so watch your self as I did copy that threat JIC.

    I already have a bunch of people I fix bikes for and have already pulled about a 3rd of the business away from the local Botique bike shop due to our quick, and reasonable service. You can get the parts online without having to wait for the local shop to order them and charge you at least double.

    BTW, we found out most bicycle shops do not rebuild suspension components; they send them out for rebuild, and mark up the price 100%. If you have Fox shocks, just send them to Fox and save yourself enough money to buy a new set of tires, a seat and a new chain.

    I do not buy this starving bicycle shop sob story, as all the shops here have more business than they can handle. Due to that they pick and choose their customers and cater to the high rollers who are willing to throw extra money to get to the front of the line.

    That is one reason why I'm picking up the overflow, and also because I was shocked at the kind of prices they get for relatively easy work. My customers are faithful and use me exclusively as many of them also have me fix their motorcycles and their kids motorcycles as well.

    The complaints I have voiced mostly have come from my customers, or else I would not be re-airing them here.

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    I agree it is absolutely ridiculous

    My solution is that i just don't buy new MTB's
    I just can't justify the cost to myself

    Good thing there is, components on older bikes are cheaper to replace, usually, they are simpler so easier to service yourself

    Don't believe the fanboi's there really is very very little difference between a 10 year old bike and a new one
    The fanboi's will talk about geometry blahhh blahhhhhhhhhh blahhhhhhhhhhh

    I wouldn't call it nonsense, but it's a monumentally vast exaggeration

    If bikes improved as much as the testers and media said they do we'd be riding self hovering rocketships now

    They will tell you this is better, then 3 years later tell you no no this way is better, 5 years down the line they'll have run out of exaggerations so will go back round again

    The best things about bikes is their simplicity, don't fall into the trap of believing all the hype and BS put out by testers and the media

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    The bike market is shhhhadddyyy. MAYBE professional riders can tell the difference between a 66* vs a 67* HT angle but I doubt the average Joe will.

    They also try to sell everyone waaaaay bigger (travel wise) bikes than they actually need.

    How many years before the 26” bike with a 70* HT angle is all the rage again?


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    Bicycles are super useful and just great machines. You should see what jewelers charge for their polished rocks and cast metal that do nothing but sit just to look pretty.

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    I feel the same way as OP regarding 'professional' service but it's not only bikes. Includes my motorcycles and cars. I have two Harley's and dealers are a bunch of buffoons who I don't trust putting air in my tires. I have done my own mntc and repairs for years on just about everything. Got tired long ago dealing with incompetence, waiting for appointments, making arrangements for drop-offs, delays, picking it up only to find they didn't fix a simple problem, and paying way too much for something I could have easily done myself.

    I only go to a bike shop for a super simple standard part because they never have anything beyond the ordinary. My local shop does not even carry Shimano brake fluid so I can bleed my brakes fer chrissakes. They wonder why guys like me buy everything on line.

    We have choices...I choose to do it myself. It's cheaper, faster, better and I'm happy.
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    Just so we're all on the same page, a unior seal driver is $16.

    That's the huge industry ripoff? That's lunch man.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mlx john View Post
    I'm intrigued! Please share what "most" of these tools are (other than common tools such as allen/torx/metric wrenches/screwdrivers etc. which are relatively cheap wherever you buy them).

    I'd love to acquire a "motorcycle" truing stand and save money, or even a heavy duty "motorcycle" repair stand that'll work for bicycles! That motorcycle crown race remover is hella cheap, as well as the derailleur hanger alignment tool.



    If by majority, you mean Next/Magna/Huffy?! You complain about the excessive prices of bicycles, but it's cheaper to buy a new bike than repair it? I must be doing it wrong, need to raise my rates!
    Good hand tools (that is, tools that you can use with confidence on $300+ parts) are not cheap. Screwdrivers from $7-10 each (you'll need ~10 to cover most of your bases), hex AND torx key sets starting at $25, ratchets/sockets of good repute ($75+ for each size of handle/10-15 sockets). You'll want a reasonable set of combination wrenches (~$85) Cable cutters, side cutters, pliers of various types ($25-100 each). Don't forget to include hex/torx sockets for a couple of different ranges of torque wrenches. Hammers/striking tools: Ball peen, engineer, deadblow, and rubber/plastic mallet ($20-75 each). A set of metric taps (metric drill bits, too, though you can skirt by without them)/tap handle. My 'go bag' of tools for standard mechanical work (small ratchet/socket collections, various screwdrivers, combo wrenches, l-keys, pliers, etc) has well over $700 of tools. Very few of those are 'high end'.

    More specialized work--though still not bicycle-specific--might require breaker bars, air/high power electric tools, compressor/large storage tanks. I'll pretend these are optional, though anyone who is a mechanic of any kind already knows they aren't.

    Breaking into suspension work in a bicycle setting at a high level (damper service) requires a high pressure nitrogen fill setup. Fox will helpfully source the parts required for you...prices start around $5,000. Anyone catching you working on forks at this level using sockets to drive seals would be right to skewer your business. At the very least, expect to spend $15-20 each on acetyl co-polymer seal drivers in 28, 30, 32, 34, 35, 36, 38, 40 millimetres. Expect to also find out that you need to spend the time making/buying shaft clamps that won't mar expensive/fairly fragile sliding components. Don't forget that circlip pliers of various configurations (combo circlip pliers often don't fit!) are now also mandatory, since slipping with ad-hoc tools will also carry the risk of damaging the above expensive parts. You'll need to stock several different quantities of 'bicycle specific' lubricants/damper oils to satisfy factory level service (particularly Fox), since that is what you want to be able to offer. To be profitable as a service center, you'll want several preset ratcheting torque wrenches ($300 each).

    Don't forget two different bicycle workstands to cover the variety of frame/bicycle types you'll see--dropout mounting AND clamping. Set aside $150 each for basic models. Add another $80-100 for the odd weird things you'll need to adapt those stands on occasion.

    Once you want to get into doing the type of repair work that people HAVE to come to you for, expect to add some very expensive facing/cutting tools that are specific to bicycles: brake mount facing tools (three different kinds! ~$150 each!), bottom bracket facing/threading tools (full set of taps, ~$1000), headtube facing/reaming tools (also used for PF bottom brackets, another $800ish by the time you are done buying everything). Remember to buy your left-hand 9/16x20 TPI tap for pedals. There are something on the order of 10 different freewheel/cassette lockring/bottom bracket tools in common use, though you'll need more eventually.

    Conspicuously absent from the list are 'press' tools, though you ought to set aside $250-300 for various drifts to use with your threaded rod/nuts. After you use them a bunch and realize how much of a PITA the threaded rod/nuts are, spend another $200ish on handles that make it marginally easier.

    This is without getting into 'exotic' tools like cotter presses/fender punches/spoke nippers/spoke threading(!) machines/adjustable tube benders/coarse alignment tools/etc, etc. Expect each to cost AT LEAST $150. Some, like the cotter press, are no longer available--good luck getting a cotter out that has never been removed in 60 years without a VAR lever-type press. Some tools, like fork/rim benders incur a cost beyondjust money: liability.

    Anyway, I'm sure the OP has thought all this out...

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Trying to do tuneups on huffys for $100 a pop is a nightmare, and the reason bike shops fold left and right. Shops dont overcharge, theres just no money in that stuff.

    If it takes an hour that's $100/hr shop labor charge. Tuning Huffy's be just as profitable as tuning up $5,000 machines ime.
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  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sickmak90 View Post
    The bike market is shhhhadddyyy. MAYBE professional riders can tell the difference between a 66* vs a 67* HT angle but I doubt the average Joe will.

    They also try to sell everyone waaaaay bigger (travel wise) bikes than they actually need.

    How many years before the 26” bike with a 70* HT angle is all the rage again?


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    That's marketing and it is everywhere, not just the bicycle market. And it's all shady and most people don't even realize what's going on.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cbr6fs View Post
    Don't believe the fanboi's there really is very very little difference between a 10 year old bike and a new one
    The fanboi's will talk about geometry blahhh blahhhhhhhhhh blahhhhhhhhhhh

    I wouldn't call it nonsense, but it's a monumentally vast exaggeration

    If bikes improved as much as the testers and media said they do we'd be riding self hovering rocketships now
    A modern long travel 29er is essentially a rocket ship when compared to the long travel bikes from 2010. It might not be more “fun”, but it is going to be faster and more capable.

    I have come across quite a few people who share your mentality, but most of them are all riding bikes from pre 2010 and haven’t even ridden a modern bike. It is just their way of validating their decision to ride an old bike. Nothing wrong with that, but saying a 10 year old bike is just as good is a bold faced lie. Nostalgia also makes everything better.


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    Quote Originally Posted by austink26 View Post
    A modern long travel 29er is essentially a rocket ship when compared to the long travel bikes from 2010. It might not be more “fun”, but it is going to be faster and more capable.

    I have come across quite a few people who share your mentality, but most of them are all riding bikes from pre 2010 and haven’t even ridden a modern bike. It is just their way of validating their decision to ride an old bike. Nothing wrong with that, but saying a 10 year old bike is just as good is a bold faced lie. Nostalgia also makes everything better.


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    No doubt new bikes are better than a bike from even 5 years ago. I just think geo is getting a little to downhillish for average riders.

    I also hear we have a new type of riding? So now down-country is a thing?

    When do we get a new wheel size? I hear 28.25 is the perfect balance between 27.5 and 29.


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  54. #54
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    I still can't believe people are giving this thread the time of day.
    :nono: :thumbsup:

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    I understand where the OP is coming from but it just doesn't seem to work out that way. Tons of companies every single year try to start up a new bike manufacture because ya know current prices are such a rip off. Surely I can do better right? They all sink pretty quickly.

    The only bike shops around here that have stayed in buisness are the ones that the OP would consider price gouging. Everyone else has gone out of business.

    Dual sport motorcycles are cheap as f**k. Suspension is horrifically flexy and I'll equipped (unless it's KTM but that's a $15,000 bike). Everything on them is heavy but yet still have a tendency to break. I've seen multiple broken frames from Kawasaki KLRs to some very expensive BMW GSs. All of the tooling for engines has been long paid off especially in the case of Honda's air cooled XR650 (which is a great bike). Comparing these motorcycles is truely on equal ground to a $500 - $750 mountain bike.

    Coming from a motocross and sportbikes background myself I can personally say bicycles are drastically cheaper long term. That's not to say the bike industry isn't at least a little bit full of itself. Certain brands that have gotten very popular love charging premium prices without backing it up with actual performance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by austink26 View Post
    A modern long travel 29er is essentially a rocket ship when compared to the long travel bikes from 2010. It might not be more “fun”, but it is going to be faster and more capable.

    I have come across quite a few people who share your mentality, but most of them are all riding bikes from pre 2010 and haven’t even ridden a modern bike. It is just their way of validating their decision to ride an old bike. Nothing wrong with that, but saying a 10 year old bike is just as good is a bold faced lie. Nostalgia also makes everything better.


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    What you're talking about is geo, not materials and or technology that would make a bike cost more. Prices have gone up because people are willing to pay, not because bikes now cost more to produce, or have more expensive technology than 10 years ago. I just bought a fox dhx2 that basically has the exact same suspension technology you could buy from canecreek in 06. My current frame uses the same layup process and is made from the same carbon as my first 2011 carbon frame. I could go on but you get the point.

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    What you're talking about is geo, not materials and or technology that would make a bike cost more. Prices have gone up because people are willing to pay, not because bikes now cost more to produce, or have more expensive technology than 10 years ago. I just bought a fox dhx2 that basically has the exact same suspension technology you could buy from canecreek in 06. My current frame uses the same layup process and is made from the same carbon as my first 2011 carbon frame. I could go on but you get the point.
    Nothing in my reply mentioned costs, I was replying to someone who specifically said geo changes are overblown, when that really is not the case.

    With regard to price, everything is more expensive now than it was 10 years ago. That is how inflation works. The bike industry is in no way immune to that.


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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Labor rates for automotive repairs can be all over the place too. I've seen variations of hundreds of dollars for the same job. Suspension installation for a current gen GTI can go as low as $200 and get as high as $900. They use the same method and the same tools.
    Yeah, I've found that bike shops are analogous to car dealership service shops in that they charge very high rates on minor repairs in order to cover a bunch of overhead that doesn't really add any value for the majority of customers the majority of the time.

    Sure, it's nice to have a $800 set of hex keys or some $2000 specialty tool you use once every 18 months in your box, but when those costs get passed on in the form of charging $100 for a simple derailleur adjustment...meh. I've saved local riders countless thousands of dollars doing simple repairs for them in my garage for beer. Bikes are not that complicated to work on, and certainly FAR less complicated than motorcycles.
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    Even worse than comparing to motorbikes is comparing to car maintenance cost. Especially considering cars need expensive lifts to access most things.
    Every 3 years brake bleed (4 brakes) cost $60 at the stealership. How can bleeding 2 bicycle brakes cost more?

    Annual oil change is the only thing needed for the first few years, $35 at the stealership. and that for a machine that has AC, power-everything, airbags etc.

    Car has 4 shocks that last thousands of miles and don't require maintenance. Replace at the end at less cost than just a bicycle fork cost (and that requires expensive maintenance during its life). What, fork maintenance every 100 hours? that would be every month for a car.
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    Quote Originally Posted by austink26 View Post
    Nothing in my reply mentioned costs, I was replying to someone who specifically said geo changes are overblown, when that really is not the case.

    With regard to price, everything is more expensive now than it was 10 years ago. That is how inflation works. The bike industry is in no way immune to that.


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    I shouldn't have quoted you specifically. I just wanted to address the sentiment that so many have these days about pricing reflecting "modern" bikes. Bikes are great these days, but that's because of geo, not because of more expensive tech/materials. T

    For sure inflation is always going to be there, but today's prices are much higher than just inflation. People got used to paying 2k for a frame, then 2.3, 2.6, 3k... Having purchased a handful of boutique and direct to consumer carbon frames starting with a nomad2 in 2011, I can say the highest quality frame I've owned to date was that nomad2. I replaced it with a nomad3 that at best was the same quality made from the same carbon, same factory, same layup process, yet it cost a lot more? That's not inflation from 2011 to 2014. That was just what people were willing to pay for a carbon frame with santa cruz stickers in 2014 vs 2011. Now I have a rocky mountain carbon frame that cost 3.2k and it's in no way higher quality than older carbon frames. It's just more expensive because we've shown a willingness to pay crazy prices.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by HerrKaLeu View Post
    Even worse than comparing to motorbikes is comparing to car maintenance cost. Especially considering cars need expensive lifts to access most things.
    Every 3 years brake bleed (4 brakes) cost $60 at the stealership. How can bleeding 2 bicycle brakes cost more?

    Annual oil change is the only thing needed for the first few years, $35 at the stealership. and that for a machine that has AC, power-everything, airbags etc.

    Car has 4 shocks that last thousands of miles and don't require maintenance. Replace at the end at less cost than just a bicycle fork cost (and that requires expensive maintenance during its life). What, fork maintenance every 100 hours? that would be every month for a car.
    I charge $280 to bleed brakes. Oil change service is $250, or $169 if you get the coupon. Replace a shock? ... in some cases, just buy a new car. I've done them for $11,000. My diagnostic opinion is $210. If it takes 5 minutes, its still $210.

    The go to is usually tires, because schwalbe charges $90 for one, and a used junkyard tire for someones 1984 accord is $30. I've sold tires for $625 each. We kind of comp installation at $99.

    If you compare the most expensive ultra high end bike things to the lowest of the low, discounted stuff from another industry it paints a picture.

    Hardly fair though.

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by austink26 View Post
    A modern long travel 29er is essentially a rocket ship when compared to the long travel bikes from 2010. It might not be more “fun”, but it is going to be faster and more capable.
    Great example of the hyperbole, "rocketship"

    1/ Not all new bikes are great
    2/ Not all 10 year old bikes were great either

    People lump bikes together into categories, the reality is that there are good, bad and average bikes each year

    Even then, someone style and areas they ride in might suit a certain bike better than others

    This is what i mean by exaggeration, hyperbole and people talking like things are black or white

    There are different terrains, different levels of riding skill, different goals (i.e, Strava beaters and racers, all the way through to leisure riders)

    So it stands to reason that blanket statements like
    A modern long travel 29er is essentially a rocket ship when compared to the long travel bikes from 2010
    Are not worth the few kb of dataspace they take up
    Throw a long grinding uphill into that as it seems that $ to $ older bikes are lighter than the new crop of bikes

    Throw some singletrack into the equation and that (using media Hyperbole) "twitchy old geometry" and short chainstay and you start thinking to yourself maybe there isn't one right and everything else is wrong

    You're even agreeing with me
    It might not be more “fun”, but it is going to be faster and more capable.
    While there are thousands out there racing and going for KOM's, i don't think it's a stretch to say most here rider for fun
    So if older bikes are more fun, AND cheaper, surely that's a good thing??

    Quote Originally Posted by austink26 View Post
    I have come across quite a few people who share your mentality, but most of them are all riding bikes from pre 2010 and haven’t even ridden a modern bike. It is just their way of validating their decision to ride an old bike. Nothing wrong with that, but saying a 10 year old bike is just as good is a bold faced lie. Nostalgia also makes everything better.
    I'm lucky in that a fair few mates ride MTB's, many want the newest "best" but few know anything about setup and technical stuff
    So i get to "borrow" nearly all for a while to service and set them up

    I really do understand what the media are saying about stability and geo, i'm just of the opinion that they vastly exaggerate to sell clicks, advertising or magazines though

    I know some testers, if they weren't given new bikes to test, nearly all would be riding their own bikes, most of which are over 5 years old

    If we went out for a ride together, you'd trounce me on the downhills with your long travel bikes (mines 120mm travel), but i'd still enjoy them
    The fittest will likely get uphill quickest, but both of us would be knackered

    So that's why i say Hyperbole
    There is no such thing as best
    Every singletrack section, uphill, downhill is a compromise in bike design NOT technology
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  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Yeah, I've found that bike shops are analogous to car dealership service shops in that they charge very high rates on minor repairs in order to cover a bunch of overhead that doesn't really add any value for the majority of customers the majority of the time.

    Sure, it's nice to have a $800 set of hex keys or some $2000 specialty tool you use once every 18 months in your box, but when those costs get passed on in the form of charging $100 for a simple derailleur adjustment...meh. I've saved local riders countless thousands of dollars doing simple repairs for them in my garage for beer. Bikes are not that complicated to work on, and certainly FAR less complicated than motorcycles.

    True, but even a simple derailleur adjustment takes time and time is money. Unfortunately most shops can't float on beer currency.

    $100? That is nuts. We charge $15 for a derailleur adjustment and some people still think we're gouging them. Most shops I'm familiar charge somewhere between $50-100 shop labor rates which seems reasonable if the person doing the work is competent.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    True, but even a simple derailleur adjustment takes time and time is money.
    This is what it really comes down to. Spend the equivalent amount of time on a $100 bike and a $10,000 bike and the work by the same mechanic is going to cost the same. Because it's the mechanic's time. And the mechanic has bills to pay, mouths to feed, and so on, so there's a floor to how much they can charge. The ceiling is what the customer is willing to pay, and it's clear from the OP that this is often not aligned with what the mechanic charges.

    A lot of customers think that work on a cheap bike should cost less than work on an expensive one. So their ceiling is below the floor that the mechanic can possibly charge given the amount of time that the work takes. The only possible way to bring the cost down for that customer is to do the job faster. A better trained and more skilled mechanic might be able to do that to an extent, but there's only so far you can take that. And as I said before, a lot of the really cheap parts are more fiddly than the expensive stuff, and that adds time to the job.

    Frankly, a lot of bike mechanics would like to be able to charge the same shop rates as motorcycle or auto mechanics because then they'd actually be in better financial shape to support themselves or their families.

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    Holy sh!t. OP, I'd love to see you attempt this. It's very obvious you don't understand much in this world and I hope that you post back in ten years to tell us what you've learned.

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    We charge $15 for a derailleur adjustment and some people still think we're gouging them.
    That's reasonable.

    I 'charge' a 12 pack to swap out and adjust a rear derailleur, throw in a free new cable, then split the beers with my 'customer'. Best deal in town!

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    If it takes an hour that's $100/hr shop labor charge. Tuning Huffy's be just as profitable as tuning up $5,000 machines ime.
    Prob is they have more of a tendancy to become boomerang repairs. They come back and customer insists it be fixed at no cost to them.
    Most shops here have a flat rate chart for most repairs, hourly charges only for more unusual and involved repairs.
    $10 to change a tire sound like gouging? Then do it yourself. $10 barely covers the pay for person, utilities and rent of shop.
    THe market here is small though, can't support higher end stuff. Need to be in a place like Whistler or other destinations. That's why I usually drop off my suspension bits for service when I go on a trip to Whistler.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cbr6fs View Post
    Even then, someone style and areas they ride in might suit a certain bike better than others

    This is what i mean by exaggeration, hyperbole and people talking like things are black or white

    There are different terrains, different levels of riding skill, different goals (i.e, Strava beaters and racers, all the way through to leisure riders)
    The hard part is defining what is “better”. I could have just as much fun riding my gravel bike slowly on single track, but we can agree that my mtb is better at it. Since fun is subjective, that isn’t a good barometer for defining improvements in geo. Stuff like how fast it is are quantifiable so that is why downhill speed/stability are used as metrics. If you can get to the bottom faster, it is a “better” bike.

    Mentioning your bike only being 120mm doesn’t mean what it used to when modern short travel bikes are way more capable than their travel numbers would suggest. My 120mm 2020 tallboy is way more capable downhill than the 150mm 2016 bronson I had. That comes down to the geo changes and improvements in suspension design.

    I agree that used bikes are great and the best way to save money. You could have just as much fun on an old bike as a new one. Advertising makes people want to think they can be faster/go bigger so that is why they say the newer geo is better. The racer crowd definitely appreciates these changes, and it may make the average joe a little faster.


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    Quote Originally Posted by HerrKaLeu View Post

    Car has 4 shocks that last thousands of miles and don't require maintenance. Replace at the end at less cost than just a bicycle fork cost (and that requires expensive maintenance during its life). What, fork maintenance every 100 hours? that would be every month for a car.
    I hate when people compare cars or motorcycles to bikes. Cars and motorcycles can be built more durable because weight is not nearly the same level of concern as with bikes. So it is kind of a moot point.
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    New question here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Taroroot View Post
    Prob is they have more of a tendancy to become boomerang repairs. They come back and customer insists it be fixed at no cost to them.



    I haven't found that to be true, Wally world bikes are so poorly assembled in the first place that it's usually pretty easy to make a big difference in a relatively short period of time and customers are generally very satisfied (IME).

    Conversely high end bike owners expect perfection and contrary to several posts above I find 12-speed eagle more fiddly to adjust than 7-sp SIS.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    I hate when people compare cars or motorcycles to bikes. Cars and motorcycles can be built more durable because weight is not nearly the same level of concern as with bikes. So it is kind of a moot point.
    Weight is definitely a very high priority when it comes to bikes and cars, particularly off-road.

    My son's MX bike is well under 200 lbs, with 12" of travel and 40hp. The 450cc version is only ~40lbs heavier, will do over 120mph and either will handle 100+++ foot jumps with ease. They area also a few magnitudes higher as far as complication and requiring specialized tools go.
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    Uh, work on bikes yourself, it isn't rocket science. If you can dress yourself and brush your teeth you have all the motor skills required. Youtube gives you the how to, internet gives you the tools for cheaper than the service...

    If you can't figure that out, perhaps you should just become a runner. All you have to do is buy shoes & tie em.
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Weight is definitely a very high priority when it comes to bikes and cars, particularly off-road.

    My son's MX bike is well under 200 lbs, with 12" of travel and 40hp. The 450cc version is only ~40lbs heavier, will do over 120mph and either will handle 100+++ foot jumps with ease. They area also a few magnitudes higher as far as complication and requiring specialized tools go.
    I didn't say it wasn't a high priority but the simple fact is when you have 40hp you can afford to make things a little heavier for durability then when you are powering it by your legs.

    Lighter weight in a car or motorcycle is going to allow for better handling, braking, gas mileage and acceleration. I have spent basically my whole adult life playing with cars including build a tubeframe chassis open wheel car. But at the end of the day you can get away with more weight because you have a motor and you want to slightly overbuild stuff because of the speed that you can hit.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I haven't found that to be true, Wally world bikes are so poorly assembled in the first place that it's usually pretty easy to make a big difference in a relatively short period of time and customers are generally very satisfied (IME).

    Conversely high end bike owners expect perfection and contrary to several posts above I find 12-speed eagle more fiddly to adjust than 7-sp SIS.
    I wasn't specifically calling out drivetrains, but just everything in general about bottom of the barrel BSO's. And that is more relevant to cheap pot metal and junk plastics that flex and break if you look at them wrong than anything else.

    Poor assembly is a big part of why those bikes suck, but not all of it. Once they get a little age on them, the assembly isn't really a factor anymore and you start to run into problems with how fast all those pot metal and crap plastic parts wear out or fail.

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    Poor assembly is a big part of why those bikes suck, but not all of it. Once they get a little age on them, the assembly isn't really a factor anymore and you start to run into problems with how fast all those pot metal and crap plastic parts wear out or fail.



    No doubt, I was just pointing out that huffy owners are generally much less demanding and usually expect things to break. They are mostly aware that they bought a turd.

    Also I usually get huffy tunes done a lot faster than
    $7,000 XXX plastic bikes and if anything I probably have less comebacks after servicing them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    No doubt, I was just pointing out that huffy owners are generally much less demanding and usually expect things to break. They are mostly aware that they bought a turd.

    Also I usually get huffy tunes done a lot faster than
    $7,000 XXX plastic bikes and if anything I probably have less comebacks after servicing them.
    IME, the homeless guy on a huffy is a whole different ballgame than the dude on a huffy who can afford something nicer but refuses to pay for it and is deluding himself into thinking that his BSO is just as good as the latest-and-greatest in the showroom window. I've worked with more than a few of both types. The homeless guy is usually grateful for everything. The other guy, well, he can be just as difficult to deal with as the triathlon racer who brought his bike in for major work on Wed when he has to get on a plane for his big race on Fri night because he tried to DIY his stuff and then threw some important parts in the trash, and now his bike doesn't work (yep, saw that one roll into the shop - some proprietary parts for his crank that were going to take awhile just to get, not even counting the install).

  77. #77
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    op wants all bikes shops to be Western Auto and all bike parts to be WALD

    smh
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  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    IME, the homeless guy on a huffy is a whole different ballgame than the dude on a huffy who can afford something nicer but refuses to pay for it and is deluding himself into thinking that his BSO is just as good as the latest-and-greatest in the showroom window.


    Did I mention anything about homeless guys? The other type of huffy owner you describe is pretty rare ime. I've worked in a half dozen shops and (unfortunately) have probably serviced thousands of department store bikes. Take my experiences for what they're worth.
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  79. #79
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    I am not the only person who has nightmares about trying to make these work, right? (Not linear pull brakes, but these specific brakes at that ubiquitous on BSOs.)
    Why the ripp-off prices for bicycles and repairs?-set-2-pairs-front-rear-steel-black-bike-cycle-v-brakes-set-new-cheap-3539-p.jpg
    Last edited by mack_turtle; 08-13-2020 at 06:42 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    I didn't say it wasn't a high priority but the simple fact is when you have 40hp you can afford to make things a little heavier for durability then when you are powering it by your legs.

    Lighter weight in a car or motorcycle is going to allow for better handling, braking, gas mileage and acceleration. I have spent basically my whole adult life playing with cars including build a tubeframe chassis open wheel car. But at the end of the day you can get away with more weight because you have a motor and you want to slightly overbuild stuff because of the speed that you can hit.
    Agreed, more weight is definitely required to handle higher stresses. Same as when comparing road bikes to DH bikes, etc.
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  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    I am not the only person who has nightmares about trying to make these work, right?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    They're pretty simple compared to cantilever brakes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by eshew View Post
    If you can't figure that out, perhaps you should just become a runner. All you have to do is buy shoes & tie em.
    What if someone can't figure out how to tie their shoes? Asking for a friend...
    :nono: :thumbsup:

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    Quote Originally Posted by noapathy View Post
    What if someone can't figure out how to tie their shoes? Asking for a friend...
    I charge a flat rate for that service.


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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    I am not the only person who has nightmares about trying to make these work, right?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Adjust? No problem.

    Work? Replace them with forged aluminum brakes (Tektro or Shimano).

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Did I mention anything about homeless guys? The other type of huffy owner you describe is pretty rare ime. I've worked in a half dozen shops and (unfortunately) have probably serviced thousands of department store bikes. Take my experiences for what they're worth.
    No, you didn't. I'm just expressing the range of folks I've seen. Most fall somewhere between, for sure. Just pointing out that I've dealt with people every bit as picky about their BSO being dialed as people can be with their top end gear. I've seen my fair share of folks who get combative about the cost of what's available at the LBS vs. what's available at their nearest box store vs service costs. Seems to happen more at some shops than it does at others, but I wouldn't call those people rare.

    Part of it seems to be that people with better bikes often bring them in earlier because they're pickier about how they work (with some notable exceptions), so the fix is less involved. Whereas ppl with cheaper stuff like to wait longer until it becomes a cascading effect and the bike is unusable. Lots of those folks just replace it because the mounting costs exceed the value of the bike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    I charge $280 to bleed brakes. Oil change service is $250, or $169 if you get the coupon. Replace a shock? ... in some cases, just buy a new car. I've done them for $11,000. My diagnostic opinion is $210. If it takes 5 minutes, its still $210.

    The go to is usually tires, because schwalbe charges $90 for one, and a used junkyard tire for someones 1984 accord is $30. I've sold tires for $625 each. We kind of comp installation at $99.

    If you compare the most expensive ultra high end bike things to the lowest of the low, discounted stuff from another industry it paints a picture.

    Hardly fair though.
    Do you have a Ferrari dealership, or did you just enter random numbers?

    Servicing an expensive bike shouldn't be much more costly than servicing a $500 hybrid. Quite the contrary since more expensive parts are easier to work on. The only added expense for expensive bike would be suspension service.

    I guess the one advantage a bicyclist has, that an average person could learn to do the common work on a bicycle and most tools are not that expensive. A $100 repair stand is more affordable for the average rider than a car lift for the average driver.


    LBS are pretty much set up for people who either have the money and don't care, or people who are not able to change a tire. I would bet the majority on this forum are not typical LBS consumers. But 99% of the riders are not on this forum.


    One reason I think bicycles appear so expensive is the lack of economies of scale. Too many small manufacturers. Too many models. Yes, choice is good, but costly. There are only a dozen+ actual car manufacturers and each car model is made a few million times world-wide over the life cycle of a model (4-6 years). Also many parts are shared between models on the same platform. There is a reason the plethora of small car manufacturers of the early last century disappeared.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaymen View Post
    I do not buy this starving bicycle shop sob story, as all the shops here have more business than they can handle. Due to that they pick and choose their customers and cater to the high rollers who are willing to throw extra money to get to the front of the line.

    That is one reason why I'm picking up the overflow, and also because I was shocked at the kind of prices they get for relatively easy work. My customers are faithful and use me exclusively as many of them also have me fix their motorcycles and their kids motorcycles as well.

    The complaints I have voiced mostly have come from my customers, or else I would not be re-airing them here.
    There's a good chance that this is a temporary aberration from COVID. Everyone is jumping into biking because there's not much else to do. From buying new bikes, to dusting off the old 26er in the garage and taking it to the LBS to revive it.

    All the local bike shops in my area are beyond slammed for service/repairs and have a huge backlog. This is likely temporary, and things will go back to normal at some point. Or they won't and you'll have built up a thriving bike repair business.

  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    They're pretty simple compared to cantilever brakes.
    I was very careful about my choice of photo. These are the specific garbage brakes made from stamped steel and spring made from ramen noodles that appear on BSOs that never work. The feel great one moment, then turn to crap the next.

    Quote Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
    Adjust? No problem.

    Work? Replace them with forged aluminum brakes (Tektro or Shimano).
    These are the brakes that come one $150 department store bikes. By the time a shop has charged MSRP for some OK Tektro brakes and a reasonable cost to replace them, it is more than 1/2 the value of the bike.

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    I was very careful about my choice of photo. These are the specific garbage brakes made from stamped steel and spring made from ramen noodles that appear on BSOs that never work. The feel great one moment, then turn to crap the next.

    I work on crappy brakes like that pretty much every day (again, unfortunately) and I guarantee I'll have those things locking up both wheels in ~5 minutes. Customer is happy, shop makes a little money.


    Probably 90% of department store bikes I work on are kids bikes, which is pretty sad but understandable considering many parents are low on disposable cash. It might be a pos boat anchor but seeing the smiles on kids faces when they get a working bike back makes the process worthwhile for me.

    Apx. 0% of department store bikes I work on are being used as actual mountain bikes.
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    My dumbass made the mistake of buying my kids specialized bikes from the get go. Now they have a superiority complex but there bikes always work while half the neighborhood kids don’t have brakes.


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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    I charge $280 to bleed brakes. Oil change service is $250, or $169 if you get the coupon. Replace a shock? ... in some cases, just buy a new car. I've done them for $11,000. My diagnostic opinion is $210. If it takes 5 minutes, its still $210.
    That's some insane pricing. You must work on some high end cars. My local place will change my oil for $25 bucks if I bring my own oil and filter. 11k for suspension? I can see it happening at a Mercedes dealer charging full pop replacing the air suspension on an AMG car. High end coilovers for a Nissan GTR is around 7k. Street versions are around 3500.

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    Yup, german high end. 11k included the pneumatics and sensors. That was an ugly job, but not that weird. We billed $45k for a tuned engine a few weeks back. Our bulk 200 gallon container of oil is still 5ish bucks a quart cost!

    Rich people cars are another world. I can hardly defend some pricing there, but the bike shop charging $15 for a tube install isn't comparable to a near $300 brake flush I do daily.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sickmak90 View Post
    I charge a flat rate for that service.
    Cool, as long as you don't try to upsell me on fancy carbon laces...errr...I mean my friend.
    :nono: :thumbsup:

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    It's simply a matter of the laws of supply and command.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TylerVernon View Post
    It's simply a matter of the laws of supply and command.
    Wth is "supply and command"?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    Wth is "supply and command"?
    1:08

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