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It's mostly because we get paid bullshit.

Seriously, do you have any idea how annoying it is to get bitched at about the cost of a tune up when you don't make shit?

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There is an issue with the market being glutted with under-skilled people desperate to become mechanics and the fact that people like you place them at the same level as a talented and experienced mechanic is part of the problem.

+1 this is why my $20 tune ups in the past would only ride like new for a week in good weather. I got a  $50 tune up (plus parts) at Turin a month ago and my bike rides better than the day I bought it in this weather.

The magic of the free market system (speaking economically, not politically) is it naturally rewards people for doing the work members of society need most and punishes those who do work members of society need least.

You must be getting an amazing invisible hand job the way you talk this up at any opportune moment. We all get it you love capitalism. And how perfectly it obviously works. Must be why people in Marketing and lawyers make so much. No offense to you marketing professionals and Lawyers out there. But are your jobs really needed more than nurses, EMTs, Teachers …...

 

You're stretching the idea of skilled trades (most specifically the economics of skilled trades) when you try to put bicycle assembly and repair in the same category as skilled carpentry, cabinetry, the blacksmith trade, or actual bicycle design/building (like frame building where one might actually need to sweat pipe). That is not to say bicycle mechanics are in any way less respectable or important than these other trades -- they just deal with a different economic situation (which has been the only think I've commented on in this thread.)

I do agree with you that there is an art to building and truing wheels. A few people (one two) specialize in it.

notoriousDUG said:

All forms of being a mechanic are an art form, or more specifically a craft in my opinion.  

People who have dedicated there lives to being a mechanic are no less a craftsman than a carpenter, a cabinet maker or a blacksmith.  They spend years not only obtaining the knowledge to repair things but also accumulating the, for lack of a better term, 'feel' it takes to become a truly skilled mechanic.  

Yet he's smart enough to push your button and get an insult to pop out every time.

notoriousDUG said:

It amazes me how stupid you are...

  Tom D said-"Artists however always have the opportunity to create something exceptionally new, unique, and/or powerful that might be rewarded greatly. Bicycle mechanics do not have this ability." Jeepers, there definitely are artists building bikes, take a look at the photos from the handmade bicycle show. Frame builders, machinists, painters, and leather workers are fashioning incredible works of art. I'm curious, other than getting really fast at fixing those 75 Walmart bikes for every one fun job, how does one express his "art" in wrenching? Without taking on the responsibilities of running a small business, or gaining the skills to build frames or fabricate components how do you prevent getting stunted in this trade?

  

Lol Zing!

Davo said:

You must be getting an amazing invisible hand job

I completely agree. I was under the impression that we were talking strictly about mechanics (assembly and repair) and not builders here.

Thomas Bruzan said:

Jeepers, there definitely are artists building bikes, take a look at the photos from the handmade bicycle show. Frame builders, machinists, painters, and leather workers are fashioning incredible works of art. I'm curious, other than getting really fast at fixing those 75 Walmart bikes for every one fun job, how does one express his "art" in wrenching? Without taking on the responsibilities of running a small business, or gaining the skills to build frames or fabricate components how do you prevent getting stunted in this trade?

  

Tom, what's special about these two stores that you gave the links for ?


Tom Dworzanski said:

[snip]

I do agree with you that there is an art to building and truing wheels. A few people (one two) specialize in it.

mechanics are not compensated with fair wages because bike shops in general do not make much money. and it's getting worse for various reasons. as much as I like bicycles, I sure as hell would not invest in the bicycle industry. 

Just that they seem to specialize in building high quality wheels. They were the first two links on Google. I don't know anything else about them.

I guess I'm also trying to gently imply that specializing in wheels is one way to earn more money in the cycling industry since it's impossible to automate and requires serious human skill (art).


ilter said:

Tom, what's special about these two stores that linked to?


Tom Dworzanski said:

[snip]

I do agree with you that there is an art to building and truing wheels. A few people (one two) specialize in it.

I;ve always just assumed it was you trying to generate traffic on the site with one of your many profiles.

h' 1.0 said:

Yet he's smart enough to push your button and get an insult to pop out every time.

notoriousDUG said:

It amazes me how stupid you are...

It depends on what the hub needs.  If it just needs to be lubed and greased up I usually charge about $60 for that and that includes packing the outer bearings with marine grease (it's a common issue for the grease to washout of the outer bearing and the race to get damaged when it urns dry ruining the hub shell and marine grease prevents that).  If they need  more than that I need to open it up and see what it needs; more often than not the parts are not available or cost effective to purchase but sometimes they can be fixed.

Diego Rael- 16.0mi said:

I find this really funny because  nobody really needs watches anymore, but since rich people  love to have some of these outrageously expensive status symbols on there wrists and yes some watches can cost over $100,000.00 I'm there to provide a service for these items and I find it more useless than the skills of a bike mechanic which I hold in higher esteem than my job and  something that  I feel betters society as a whole. I thinks prices for bike repairs are ridiculously low compared to auto repair and true you can learn this stuff online but  most people don't have the time  or skill set to accomplish  this stuff on their own. I feel if bike shops united and came to an agreement that this is a much needed service then they could raise the bar and charge more thus paying the mechanics a better wage. Sorry to say it but screw the people with their shitty Walmart bikes complaining about the price of an overhaul. They are not real cyclists and if they don't want to pay for a much needed service that they can't perform on their own so be it.  As a watchmaker I have the tools and skills necessary to service  a majority of the complex timepieces out there, therefore I can charge $700.00 to over $1000.00 for an overhaul on a Rolex or a Panerai. Now I know this is not the same as the bike world but as DUG said bikes are getting more complex and as it stands  if you cant fix it or afford the tools to do it yourself then expect to pay the price. I charge $60.00 to change the battery in a high end Swiss watch and over $100.00 to do it in Patek Philippe and Rolex watches. Why can I charge this? Well, because I have the proper tools and skills and know that someone with a $5000.00 or more watch is not going to take it to the mall kiosk and if they want to well God bless them. DUG, bike shops need to start adjusting their prices because a customer with a really high end bike should pay more for an overhaul than someone with a Walmart bike. They obviously have more money and will pay for  a highly skilled service on their investment and wont complain. By the way I think I need my Shimano Nexus 8 serviced soon and don't want to really do it myself even though i have researched the how to online. What does something like that cost? I'll even tip you a bottle of Bourbon.

Actually many shops here in Chicago can build you high quality wheels if you ever bothered to look into it beyond just asking google...

Tom Dworzanski said:

Just that they seem to specialize in building high quality wheels. They were the first two links on Google. I don't know anything else about them.

I guess I'm also trying to gently imply that specializing in wheels is one way to earn more money in the cycling industry since it's impossible to automate and requires serious human skill (art).


ilter said:

Tom, what's special about these two stores that linked to?


Tom Dworzanski said:

[snip]

I do agree with you that there is an art to building and truing wheels. A few people (one two) specialize in it.

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