Looking for a second career. Seeking advise.- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Looking for a second career. Seeking advise.

    After seventeen years as a doctor of chiropractic, I think I am finally spent on this career. Last year my business took in $171k, but after expenses I only took home about $66k. My income is so low now because I have lost my passion for my profession that I once had and I am more interested in all things bikes. With the squeeze on health care now because of Obamacare, It's like big brother Is always looking over our shoulder and making us see more and more people, for less an less money. And more than that, it's gotten increasingly difficult on my body. The side- posture adjustments are beginning to actually to take a toll on my back now and infringe on my biking. After much deliberation and self reflection, I would like to consider changing careers into something that I enjoy more. I always loved biking, and mountain bikes in particular. I enjoy fixing things. I think I could really get into being a bike mechanic - And one day, maybe even owning my own shop. My wife is really pushing back against this idea. She thinks I should just go teach. But I love biking. I do not have a passion for teaching. I guess I would like advise from bike mechanics. Where did you go to school? how long does it take before one can earn a solid income? How easy is it to find a job as a bike mechanic? I presume there is a high demand, as biking, both road and mountain, but more so road, is so incredibly popular all around the globe, that I would imagine a good bike mechanic, like a good chiropractor, could write his own ticket. Any advise would be much appreciated.

    Thank you-

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    Stepping into a new working area is great risk and I can understand that your wife are against your decision.

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    Lol, you "only" bring home 66k per year. That's 25k more than I gross in a year and I make pretty good $$ compared to a bike shop mechanic. You spend most of your days assembling new bikes and dealing with things people have screwed up on their entry level stuff. Contrary to what is sometimes a popular belief on bike forums, there is nothing to working on a bicycle. Anyone with even a basic mechanical ability and a small amount of simple training can do it, so the bike shop wrench pits are staffed by college kids working their way through.
    I agree with your wife, dropping a good paying career (unless your financially set to the point this is an early retirement thing) to go eat pizza and yuk around with 19-20 year olds, fooling with bicycles, and making $10 per hour, is bordering on a reality challenge issue.
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    Big thing you are talking about. Perhaps you could consider locum work in areas with good riding. Work 1 month , take a week or 2 off. Wife goes or stays each trip as she chooses. Factor in the income versus need for a break. Use your skills, Your colleagues probably feel like you do, so they want a few weeks off too. Chiropractor to a MTB team may be possible, doubtful, but it's something to aim for and a little more encouraging than tightening cables.

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    I live in a city of 350 thousand people and we have 5 bike shops, there were a few more but the business is not there to support more. You would need to see if your city could support another shop, does it need a shop, what would you sell? Just being a wrench monkey will not make ends meet you need a full blown store which will cost a small fortune to start up. You could always start up a side repair shop out of your garage or basement and see how that goes, see if you like dealing with people who dont want to spend that 100 bucks on a tune up and so on. Start small and go from there, get some tools, take a course, can you build wheels? Setting up a derailluer is not hard , building a good wheel is an art. I just started building mine and I tell you it's awesome to build your own wheels.

    Good luck in what ever decision you make, most important thing in life is to love what you do and to be happy, sometimes making the most money dosen't make you happy, lifes not all about money.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinecruncher View Post
    I would imagine a good bike mechanic, like a good chiropractor, could write his own ticket. Any advise would be much appreciated.

    Thank you-




    As long as that ticket includes minimum wage and Top Ramen you'll be golden.

  7. #7
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    Go back to school and become a dentist. My g/f works in a dental office and the owner of the practice makes 7 digits. And this is in a very rural area and trust me...this guy doesn't work too hard.

  8. #8
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    Your wife is right, man. You'd be lucky to make $25k (before taxes) as a bike mechanic. You "only" make 66k now....get ready to sell your house, have your wife divorce you, and live on shrimp flavored ramen.
    All good things in all good time

  9. #9
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    I wish I only made $66k a year. That's twice what I make and I risk my life everytime I go to work.

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    you lost most people at "take home only 66". 66 SALARY is probably significantly more then most people make.

    You must have just missed the article circulating about Bike Mechanics averaging about 22-25k a year (again that is salary/hourly, not what they clear)

    I can see though where spinecruncher might think a statement like that is received differently seeing as how people are constantly talking about 4-8k dollar bikes and shelling out hundreds on parts.

    I'm always curious about how much the average users on here spend on bikes. But of course its all relative. If you are single and have no debt making 35 grand a year its probably pretty easy to drop a few grand on bikes. If you make 50 a year, have two mouths to feed, a mortgage, school loans, etc etc you probably live check to check.

  11. #11
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    Move to Washington or Colorado and sell weed. Not only will you have a good hookup for your back pain, but those guys are making lots of money.

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    Must be location, I know the electricians here made 100k last year with overtime.

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  13. #13
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    This has to be a sock-troll, right?

  14. #14
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    I think he is being serious.
    If I were you I would make sure I have no expenses (downsize if needed) no house, car, credit card, or any other major payments. If you are at that point, find a career that you enjoy doing. Sell your practice, keep your license up to date, maybe work 1-2 days a week at someone elses practice. Then you will have more time to spend with your family, travel, or get another career that you enjoy. Also, don't do anything unless your wife is on board with it.

  15. #15
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    You're double what I make with a 4 year degree, I got a wife and 1 year old to boot. I've got good benefits though and work doesn't require I risk my safety. Nubster, you deserve more.
    I don't know why,... it's just MUSS easier to pedal than the other ones.

  16. #16
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    Not sure if the OP is serious, but if he is, sounds like symptoms of depression to me. Seriously, I have relatives with depression issues, and one particular relative is often talking about walking out on his (relatively) lucrative professional practice because he thinks he'd be happier doing something else. Usually is an indication he's off his meds or something, quite honestly, because it goes away with time.
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  17. #17
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    The cost of living here in the U.S. just keeps going up, up and up. If your pays goes down significantly, your quality of life goes down too. That's a tough thing to adjust to, especially if you're married. I like the dental school idea. I used to ride with a guy that was a dentist. He made serious bank. He once offered me a job as a "dental assistant", with no training, $60k!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnb View Post
    I like the dental school idea. I used to ride with a guy that was a dentist. He made serious bank. He once offered me a job as a "dental assistant", with no training, $60k!
    Sure, sounds great. As long as he can get admitted to a dental program, can afford not to work for at least 4 years, wants to take on a few hundred thousand dollars in student loans, actually wants to be a dentist in the end, and is willing to put in the work to run and maintain a successful practice.

    Or he could just do the same thing with the education he already has. "Good" chiropractors make just as much as good dentists. And there are plenty of both who are running failing business as well.
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  19. #19
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    Chiropractor may not be what moves you right now, but as others have commented, does pay the bills. What if you had office hours 2-3 days/week, or mornings, or like one of the posters said 1 wk on, 1 off, etc? This way, you could compress the chiropractor work into smaller periods of time, and still have time to explore something else? Speaking from experience, unless that monthly nut is covered, its difficult to really explore something new. Given the structure of the work you have at your disposal, you have a neat opportunity and don't have to go cold turkey. For example, if you worked in an office for 40 hours/week and you had to quit - I'd say first restructure your current business so that it suits your needs and then explore from there.

  20. #20
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    Yup, lots of "Ifs". No easy answers. But, what I think most everyone agrees on is, going from being a chiropractor to a bike mechanic doesn't seem like a good idea. Someone here mentioned "depression". Yeah, I think depression would come into play if one went from chiropractor's pay to bike mechanic's pay.

  21. #21
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    Damn you Obamacare! Another affluent, blue collar worker facing the perils of becoming a proletarian bicycle mechanic. Daaammmnn yyoouuu!!

    Anyway, show this to your wife then ask again.
    <iframe src="http://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/30992339" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" style="border:1px solid #CCC; border-width:1px 1px 0; margin-bottom:5px; max-width: 100%;" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="356" scrolling="no" width="427"> </iframe> Bike Mechanic Salaries from Donny Perry

  22. #22
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    I know some guys who left lucrative jobs to work in bike shops and other lower-paying jobs.

    The owner of the shop I work for part-time was a corporate lawyer for a major pharmaceutical firm. He quit that job and opened a bike shop. I know a guy who worked for that same pharmaceutical firm (I don't know what capacity) and left to open a restaurant. One guy I worked with was in industrial equipment sales. When the economy tanked and his sales dropped precipitously as factories tightened up their budgets, he quit that work and became a bike mechanic. He makes a lot less now, but he is happy with his choice.

    It's possible, but you have to be in the position to handle the realities of the new industry you choose. Either by being free & clear of other financial commitments, or having the ability to appropriately downsize, or whatever is necessary. The financial insecurity is going to be the big one. I would bet your wife has a better idea of what that would mean for your lifestyle than you do at this point. And it sounds like she doesn't want to have anything to do with it.

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    66k sounds like a lot but it's all relative to the cost of living and the lifestyle you expect. As a business owner I can tell you it's depressing to watch 60-80% of your gross revenue go out the window to expenses, taxes and the like. And yes there is certainly a big brother is watching aspect to it as well. Being self employed isn't anywhere near the cakewalk everybody thinks it is. You carry ALL of the responsibilities and are never really off the clock. I can totally relate to Spinecruncher. I'm in the flooring business, my body and the money ain't what they used to be. I often fantasize about doing something else, unfortunately that won't pay the bills.

  24. #24
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    Yeah I thought about that too. Maybe the OP isn't after money but happiness. But then I reread the sentence "only brought in 66k last year." If it's put that way it doesn't sound like that person is ready to trade opulence for happiness.I definitely know some people who left cushy jobs to focus their lives on bikes too.

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    First of all I have to echo the comment about $66K being relative. If you live in SoCal it is very difficult to find a house in a lot of areas that will sell for less than $500K and I'm talking about 1500 sq ft and not in Malibu... make that $1.5M. Trying to raise a family, a mortgage, 401, etc. costs coin.

    As for being a "good" mechanic... there are no schools for that. I'm not a mechanic but I have been turning wrenches for 30 years and the difference between a mechanic and a "good" mechanic is what is learned through experience, not a school. There is that tribal knowledge that separates the level of competency.

    This does put you at a disadvantage because if you have not been working on bikes for a long time, you are coming in a the same level as the college kids, maybe even behind some of them.

    If your wife is not buying in to this, you have another issue because you if you have some funds, you can set up a repair service and hire the mechanics you need and learn as you go... but you are really rolling the dice without a good network of riders in the community. Your mechanics rep will have to do that. At the end of the day you will probably end up with less dollars to show for your effort, but you could be happier... at least for a while.

    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by Awshucks View Post
    If it's put that way it doesn't sound like that person is ready to trade opulence for happiness.
    Well, $66k/yr is a long way from 'opulence' in my book. And from the perspective of someone who also owns his own business, all the headaches it brings, uncertainty, and stress, in addition to paying your own health insurance, all of your retirement (no contribution matching or pensions!), all of your own payroll taxes, plus all of those things for your employees, I'm with the OP in that regard -- $66k wouldn't be worth the stress of running a business unless it was a business you absolutely loved.
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  27. #27
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    I'm a little surprised at all the negative reaction to the OP saying that $66,000 is not a lot of money. For somebody well into their career that's not a very high earnings bracket. Of course it's relative and I'm sure there are places where you could stretch that fairly far. But I couldn't imagine buying a house, sending kids to college and saving for retirement on that kind of salary. So I'm going to cut the OP a break on his comments.

    Now that being said, I say keep your job, OP because like others have said, you're not going to make too much money being a bike mechanic. And given that you have some money worries you could end up disappointed with this choice, despite your obvious love of bikes and riding. Perhaps you could weigh other options while you are working. Is there any way you can parlay your experience as a chiropractor into a related but more lucrative field? Don't make any rash decisions and again, I would keep the income coming in.
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    There's an old saying that goes something to the effect of... The quickest way to no longer enjoying a hobby is trying to make money at it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PdlPwr View Post
    There's an old saying that goes something to the effect of... The quickest way to no longer enjoying a hobby is trying to make money at it.



    So stay out of Porn.

  30. #30
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    Working in porn is overrated. It's OK for awhile but it gets old. Long hours.
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  31. #31
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    Re: Looking for a second career. Seeking advise.

    $66k before or after taxes? $66k net income on $171k gross revenue is not a bad margin if you could scale it up somehow and keep the same margin. Have you thought about bringing in a junior partner and expanding the business, adding patients or adding office locations? Also can you get your costs down further? How do those costs break down? Are you marketing effectively and managing the online visibility and reputation of your business?

  32. #32
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    In 2008 I quit working as a tunneling mechanic. I was tired of working 12 plus hours a day, and dealing with some really messed up people. I had been making about 100 to 179K. I don't know the take home numbers as my wife is the tax guru.
    I do structural steel and other construction inspection, schools, hospitals ect.
    Construction is slow, I'm not making it very well in San Diego. If my wife was doing better I'd be fine, but...Good luck, I think I just traded devils is all.

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    Thanks for all your input. I think I was an an emotional swing and not thinking about the affect a job as a bike mechanic would have on my life, unless it was made into something as mentioned, my own bike shop. Maybe it is just fantasy but, in America we are supposed to be able to pursue our dreams, whatever they are. At the same time, that freedom cuts both ways into possibility of defeat. Planning is obviously critical, and not allowing emotions to get in the way too much. Its just that one's regular profession after a a while, can be a rut.
    By the way, my gross receipts are about avgerage. Its the take home that's a killer. At then end of they day, most all of us, the 95%, or whatever, are all living dollar to dollar. And I see some who have came into the profession I am in, in a few years completely spent, go on to selling life insurance, or even carpeting. Others, Somehow, rose to the top and went on to make little empires. That's America for you. Still, its getting harder and harder. For example healthcare, well, its going corporate all the way around. Increasingly tough to make it in a small little one person practice. I think that must be similar to bike shops. I mean, there is REI, Sports Chalet, Trek. These big companies have advantages for consumers that mom and pops cannot match. For example, the return policy. Mom and pops cannot afford to offer the same incentives to purchase the bikes, cannot afford to run on the same profit margin. And don't even get me started on "made in China."

  34. #34
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    Some thoughts....


    There is a club for people who dislike their job. Its called.... "Everyone". We meet at the bar on Friday.

    Work is not suppose to be fun. That's why they call it work. That's the reason you get paid for doing it. For the most part people don't get paid for having fun. "Read it. Know it. Live it."


    On a more positive note, "Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances". Ben Franklin


    This whole thing reminds me of what I 'm going through with my wife... She wants to give up an extremely lucrative career in healthcare to raise goats. I feel _your wife's_ pain.

    First world problems.

    Suck it up and get back to cracking backs.

  35. #35
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    Hmmm not everyone hates their job. I am Not saying some days I feel like its all for nothing but thats just life. I enjoy what I do and working means I can buy bikes , eat and live in a house. Not everyone is happy but when you think your life sucks go help out at a soup kitchen or a homeless shelter, you'll soon see your lifes not so bad.

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  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Danger View Post
    This has to be a sock-troll, right?
    My thought as well. He did pop up later in the thread, though.

    My wife would have me balls if I left my gig and decided to live on meager earnings and party on with the young hipsters.
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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinecruncher View Post
    Where did you go to school? how long does it take before one can earn a solid income? How easy is it to find a job as a bike mechanic?
    I have a degree in Journalism from a public college in Indiana. I used that for 1 1/2 year and then got laid off. I learned everything else I know in bicycle mechanics by working on the job. working on several decades worth of technology from dozens of manufacturers is not something you learn in a week, or even a month. it's more like an apprenticeship. more like . . .

    Quote Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
    As for being a "good" mechanic... there are no schools for that. I'm not a mechanic but I have been turning wrenches for 30 years and the difference between a mechanic and a "good" mechanic is what is learned through experience, not a school. There is that tribal knowledge that separates the level of competency.
    solid income? I nearly fell out of my chain laughing when I read that. if you can work 40 hours a week year-round (which is difficult considering how seasonal cycling is), you might make half of what you are making now. you have to really love something to bust your butt for less than $30K per year. I understand your frustration though. I lost my insurance on January 1 of this year and I was one of the few retail workers who still had insurance at all as it's been going up all these years. I really wanted insurance that covered chiropractic care but I can't afford that, so it's good to hear you have customers at all now!

    if you think your bike hurts now, try being a bicycle mechanic. oh wait, that's the idea. it's also pretty brutal on your bike. and you will still have to pay full-pop to an insurance company for crappy insurance because you bike shop is not going to provide it for you. fortunately, you probably know some chiropractors who will help you with that.

    however, if you are in a position to lower your income, lower your standard of living, and do something that you enjoy, go for it. it's hard to get into a bike shop. I don't know where entry-level mechanics start. I somehow got into a shop a few years ago with my good mechanical aptitude and passion. and a reference on the inside. looking back on it, If I was the hiring manager, I would not have hired me. but they took a chance and gave me a lot of oversight. I have been at it for five years and I am just starting to feel comfortable with it. I wrote extensively about it here: http://forums.mtbr.com/general-discu...es-898792.html

    go read ALL of that thread.

  38. #38
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    why not drop to part time, and start up another job that merges your love of bikes with your profession? what about going health related and using your knowledge in chiropractics and health and becoming a professional bike fitter? we all know cyclists have our own issues related to all the hours spent in the saddle.

  39. #39
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    I can't wait to stop working in my chosen profession, and I know there are many things I could be doing that I would like a lot more, but none of them would pay anything close to what I currently make. At this point, I'm in it for the money, and whenever I feel my focus slipping at work, I remind myself of that fact.

    Frankly, sitting here, I can't think offhand of one person I know or even have ever known that loves their job.

    Imagine going to work every day and reporting to a total jerk. I've had that scenario more than once over the years. If you think you've lost your job passion now, just wait until you have some immature bully trying to push you around and make your life miserable every day. It is a nightmare.

    My suggestion is to either come to terms with your current profession and find a new motivating factor, or look into teaching so long as teaching won't result in a loss of income.

    I totally understand your spouses feelings on this one.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by moefosho View Post
    Also, don't do anything unless your wife is on board with it.
    Best advice given so far.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spinecruncher View Post
    Thanks for all your input. I think I was an an emotional swing and not thinking about the affect a job as a bike mechanic would have on my life, unless it was made into something as mentioned, my own bike shop. Maybe it is just fantasy but, in America we are supposed to be able to pursue our dreams, whatever they are. At the same time, that freedom cuts both ways into possibility of defeat. Planning is obviously critical, and not allowing emotions to get in the way too much. Its just that one's regular profession after a a while, can be a rut.
    By the way, my gross receipts are about avgerage. Its the take home that's a killer. At then end of they day, most all of us, the 95%, or whatever, are all living dollar to dollar. And I see some who have came into the profession I am in, in a few years completely spent, go on to selling life insurance, or even carpeting. Others, Somehow, rose to the top and went on to make little empires. That's America for you. Still, its getting harder and harder. For example healthcare, well, its going corporate all the way around. Increasingly tough to make it in a small little one person practice. I think that must be similar to bike shops. I mean, there is REI, Sports Chalet, Trek. These big companies have advantages for consumers that mom and pops cannot match. For example, the return policy. Mom and pops cannot afford to offer the same incentives to purchase the bikes, cannot afford to run on the same profit margin. And don't even get me started on "made in China."
    Real medicine is going to take a big hit in income in the coming years. I think chiropractic is going to take an even bigger hit. People will be less willing to use your services if they have to pay their own money.

    One of my colleagues is branching out into cosmetic medicine. People who would not dream of paying a couple hundred dollars to an internist to address their diabetes, blood pressure, and kidney failure (and look at it as a personal affront to do so) will willingly drop five hundred for Botox.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flucod View Post
    This cracks me up. As a mechanic I STILL have to pay my own health insurance (none offered) and I have absolutely no retirement plan either.
    Why does this crack you up? I was just pointing out that a self-employed person's income is often subjected to a lot of expenses that 'most' employees (such as my employees, for example) don't have to pay. I'm not crying or complaining, just stating my experience. If you don't get some of these benefits from your employer, I am sorry.
    '19 Ibis Ripmo
    '13 Felt Z4

  43. #43
    Just Joshin' ya!
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    Before you decide to "just go teach," I would caution that unless you have a background in education, excellent training and taught before, it is probably the hardest job you will do. It also takes at least 3-4 years before you become good at it. I poured concrete in college, was a legal clerk, and then decided to get into education. It is easily the most physically and emotionally draining job I have ever had. I moved into human resources for our district this school year and already miss the classroom, but my HR job is cake compared to the level of effort I hd to put into my class.

    So please don't just be one of those people who thinks they can "just go teach." I promise you, you won't make it more than a year and you will just do more harm than good to kids. Additionally, the starting salary of a first year teacher in AZ is 30K, so you are better off as a chiropractor.
    Getting a dropper post is like getting a bidet. I didn't know I needed one until I get one and boy, does my ass thank me.

  44. #44
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    I like my job an awful lot. Sure I would rather work in a shop part time and have hours and hours to ride but that isn't a reality. As others have said Dentistry is a great profession, you make good money (very, very few are making 7 figures as stated above) but 3-400k is quite possible. What a lot of people don't understand is running your own business is very stressful and when you are doing it for 66k after years of school and 17 years of practive I would imagine it just doesn't seem worth it. I wouldn't give up on your profession, maybe get a consultant to try to get more people in the door, give other ideas, etc but unfortunately those so called experts can cost more than they are worth sometimes. Where are you located and how saturated is the area??

  45. #45
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    I have one additional thought that may help or be a really stupid idea. Is it possible to incorporate your practice into a more industrialized setting? Maybe it's the white-coat-elevator-music-medical atmosphere that is really what is killing your attitude towards you job.

    If you combined you practice in the same building/complex/??? with a bike shop/snowboard/motorcycle or some non-medical setting so that even though you were still doing the same job you are kinda in with the folks doing the mechanic stuff. Don't know if that scares off whatever clientele you may have now or opens up the door to those that hate the medical office environment. Give some free cracking to that mechanic whose back is killing him and see where things end up.

    John

  46. #46
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    Looking for a second career. Seeking advise.

    How old are you OP?

  47. #47
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    O.P., we're in a serious economic depression right now(assuming you are American), probably not a good time to change careers or make any major financial changes. In nor-cal mechanics make around $10/hr. Shops are tight due to the economy and increased online sales. Ask yourself, "Do I really want to work on other people's crappy bikes all day." It's not as fun as playing with your own stuff and tinkering in your own garage. I have no formal training and I do 98% of all my own maintenance including suspension, and I'm no mechanical genius. So how valuable would you be even after attending a bike mechanic school?

  48. #48
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    Looking for a second career. Seeking advise.

    ^^ exactly

  49. #49
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinecruncher View Post
    And more than that, it's gotten increasingly difficult on my body. The side- posture adjustments are beginning to actually to take a toll on my back now and infringe on my biking.
    You could try seeing a chiropractor?
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  50. #50
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
    As for being a "good" mechanic... there are no schools for that.
    Sure there is: United Bicycle Institute

    Not going to be cost-efficient, but there is a school, just no demand for the skills when you can train someone as a journey-man for minimum wage.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  51. #51
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    Newsflash…few people like their jobs…even fewer "love" their jobs. I don't know how the obamacare thing will affect your business…so my comments here will be "in general". You are already trained, you have your shop set up, and you can make decent money.

    Rather than throw all of that away and start over, why not take two weeks off, go chill out, then come back and hit it like a savage. Work your ever-lovin ass off, make hay while the sun is shinin, get it while the gettin is good. As I view it, a job is a ticket to freedom. If I work, save, and invest enough then I will eventually free myself from the need to work. I don't have to love it, I just have to do it. Your wife is right…you'd be crazy to quit that gig to become a bike mechanic. Just because you like something doesn't mean you can make a living doing it. It reminds me of the old musician joke "what's the difference between a Drummer and a bucket of KFC?" The answer? A bucket of KFC can feed a family of four.

    Like the Fabulous Thunderbirds once said…you gotta keep pushin if you want it to go. Go chill, then come back, hit it strong, and grow your business. With hard work and some luck you can make enough money to go to Whistler and bike your ass off two weeks a year.

  52. #52
    Log off and go ride!
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    Working in a bike shop part time might be my post-retirement job, not my career choice.

    You can get burned out in any career, even one that seems like a dream at first.
    Do not take anything I post seriously. I don't.

  53. #53
    Log off and go ride!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Sure there is: United Bicycle Institute

    Not going to be cost-efficient, but there is a school, just no demand for the skills when you can train someone as a journey-man for minimum wage.
    I am trying to get the local community college to start a bike school as a voc ed program. A lot cheaper than a commercial institute.
    Do not take anything I post seriously. I don't.

  54. #54
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    There appears to be two questions in play here. First, what do you do about having lost your passion for Chiropractic. Second, what about wrenching on bikes for a living. It's hard to reccomend staying in a career that has become a job. I know a lot of folks in that position and it's not a happy place. It's also hard to reccomend taking a drastic pay cut to chase the dream. It takes a lot of repairs to generate that kind of money in a bike shop.

    Don't know what to tell you but my wife went through this almost three years ago and she walked away from more than 100K (cutting our income by 2/3s). She's been more or less retired ever since (works as a consultant on a volunteer basis for our small town). She's happy and we couldn't buy that with more money. At the same time I went back to school and am getting ready to change careers.

    Don't know what advise to give but I finished my Masters at age 50 for a career change at 53, so it's never too late to do something else.

  55. #55
    turtles make me hot
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    I used to LOVE my job. I had been working in my family's diesel generator repair shop for years. Right out of High School. I liked the job so much, I didn't realize that my brother and father were doing no work and generating zero revenue.
    One day, I realized what was going on and backtracked through our records that it had been going on for years. I was about to open my own shop... Take half the customers, two helpers... Then I was offered a job by a BIG company to be their in house "Critical Systems Engineer". Union position, Kinda monotonous, not my own boss any more...
    Don't love my job any more. BUT, I make more money and I don't break my ass like I did before. I get plenty of time to check out bike stuff on the internet and purchase parts. I got three guys at work riding, so we talk bikes all day.
    My cohort/ partner at work is also my riding buddy. He worked with me at my past place as well. You can probably guess we have fun at work.
    So, it kinda worked out for me. Now... My wife used to be a VP of a bank and made a little more than I did. One day, she kinda freaked out and walked out. Cutting your family income in half sucks red monkey ass. I make six figures and you'd almost never know it. It's very expensive to live on Long Island.
    I started building wheels for a shop that specializes in fat bikes and off beat stuff like cross bikes. I pick up and drop off. I don't really "work" there. Nice thing is, it covers my bike habit. I just completed a new fat bike almost entirely funded by wheels.
    I could never ever afford to live on a bike shop salary, but I found a way to subsidize my income slightly.
    You should speak to my chiropractor. In his office, there are two chiropractors, an acupuncturist and all sorts of physical therapy stuff going on in the back. There's a never ending line of people going in and out of there. They seem to be doing well.
    Here in NY, almost no one makes it on their one job. Doctors also own franchises like ice cream shops, they buy and sell real estate... All sorts of stuff. It used to surprise me. Doesn't any more.
    I like turtles

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