Tune-Up Time

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Bike: 2004 Specialized HardRock Sport Upgrades/Modifications: SRAM PG-850 cassette and SRAM PC-890 chain, both of which have a few hundred miles on them and were installed in Oct. 2008. I've pretty much "had it" with working on my own bike. I don't have the correct tools, facilities, patience, time, etc to learn at the moment. While I have the brakes perfectly adjusted, my drivetrain is still slightly out-of-adjustment. Some gear combinations rub, and I am also getting an occasional skip that has been somewhat cured by adjusting the rear derailleur. Also, I don't know if I adjusted the rear hub correctly when I overhauled it. So, I need a complete tune-up for the bicycle. I think I need the following items done: - True both wheels - Overhaul front and rear hub - Adjust entire drivetrain - Check overall condition of the bicycle and point out additional areas in need of repair. Basically, I am looking at a major tune-up plus the additional cost of overhauling the front and rear hubs. I checked the website of a local bicycle shop and they want about $100 for this work. How much should I be paying? Thanks!
 
$100 sounds about right. That's the going rate at the shops around here. $100 will buy a lot of bike tools. But I can understand your situation, not everyone has the time, space or interest in doing it at home.
 
Originally Posted By: The Critic
Bike: 2004 Specialized HardRock Sport Upgrades/Modifications: SPAM PG-850 cassette and SPAM PC-890 chain, both of which have a few hundred miles on them and were installed in Oct. 2008. I've pretty much "had it" with working on my own bike. I don't have the correct tools, facilities, patience, time, etc to learn at the moment. While I have the brakes perfectly adjusted, my drivetrain is still slightly out-of-adjustment. Some gear combinations rub, and I am also getting an occasional skip that has been somewhat cured by adjusting the rear derailleur. Also, I don't know if I adjusted the rear hub correctly when I overhauled it. So, I need a complete tune-up for the bicycle. I think I need the following items done: - True both wheels - Overhaul front and rear hub - Adjust entire drivetrain - Check overall condition of the bicycle and point out additional areas in need of repair. Basically, I am looking at a major tune-up plus the additional cost of overhauling the front and rear hubs. I checked the website of a local bicycle shop and they want about $100 for this work. How much should I be paying? Thanks!
look what you just posted. I thing you ment SRAM not SPAM!
 
Sounds reasonable. Incidentally, I read a suggestion on bikeforums that I am going to follow and you might want to consider. The poster suggested periodically switching among three new chains after installing a new cassette. He does so to avoid the inevitable chain skipping that occurs when a brand new chain is installed on a somewhat worn cassette. I discovered the merits of his suggestion recently when I replaced my chain, that was not quite 1/16th inch over at 12 inches, with a new PC870 chain. It skipped on the two cogs I use most even though the cassette had only 3k miles. I also replaced it with a PG850 cassette. Using his chain rotation method, he gets three times the life out of his cassettes than I did mine.
 
Originally Posted By: flanso
Sounds reasonable. Incidentally, I read a suggestion on bikeforums that I am going to follow and you might want to consider. The poster suggested periodically switching among three new chains after installing a new cassette. He does so to avoid the inevitable chain skipping that occurs when a brand new chain is installed on a somewhat worn cassette. I discovered the merits of his suggestion recently when I replaced my chain, that was not quite 1/16th inch over at 12 inches, with a new PC870 chain. It skipped on the two cogs I use most even though the cassette had only 3k miles. I also replaced it with a PG850 cassette. Using his chain rotation method, he gets three times the life out of his cassettes than I did mine.
Yep, that's a pretty good maintenance strategy. I switch the chain on my racing bike every 1100-1200 miles. I get about 4000 miles out a cassette and I've got about 12,000 miles on my front chain rings. But this plan involves a little commitment on your part. It's much easier to let everything wear together and replace your whole drive train every 2000-3000 miles (less on a mountain bike usually). If you're taking your bike to a shop to get your maintenance done, changing your chain more frequently could get costly. Not surprisingly, like automobiles or anything else, bike maintenance theory can get pretty involved. Doesn't sound like Critic is real interested in the intricacies of bike mechanics if he's going to an LBS for maintenance. Regards, Mike
 
Yesterday, I dropped the bike off at a local bicycle shop (LBS). I asked for a tune-up and an overhaul of the front and rear hubs. As I pulled into the LBS parking lot, I also got a flat, so they'll be taking care of that one as well. Here's what being done: 1) Tune-Up-- $55 Safety check, adjust shifting, adjust hubs, adjust brakes, true wheels, check overall condition of the bicycle 2) Overhaul front and rear hubs-- $30 ($15/each) Clean hubs, repack with new grease, install new ball bearings and adjust hubs 3) Replace rear derailleur housing and cable-- $10 ($5 labor, $2 for cable and $3 for housing) 4) Replace rear tube-- $6 So, what other work should I be asking the LBS to perform? How often should I have a tune-up performed and the hubs overhauled? Thanks! Answers to things brought up so far: MtnMike-- I don't think I have the skills to perform bicycle maintenance. I'll gladly replace the brakes, struts or radiator on a car, but when it comes to performing fine adjustments, I lack the touch for that. With the help of the campus bike co-op, I tried working on my own bike (and spent lots of $$ on parts in the process), but I've only made things worse. flanso-- Good idea. I'll have to look into it, thanks! Troy_Built-- Oops! duh
 
I'm sorry to hear that. Ever since I was 14 I always enjoyed tweaking my 10-speed to perfection... shifters, brakes, wheel truing, and bearings.
 
Originally Posted By: The Critic
Yesterday, I dropped the bike off at a local bicycle shop (LBS). I asked for a tune-up and an overhaul of the front and rear hubs. As I pulled into the LBS parking lot, I also got a flat, so they'll be taking care of that one as well. Here's what being done: 1) Tune-Up-- $55 Safety check, adjust shifting, adjust hubs, adjust brakes, true wheels, check overall condition of the bicycle 2) Overhaul front and rear hubs-- $30 ($15/each) Clean hubs, repack with new grease, install new ball bearings and adjust hubs 3) Replace rear derailleur housing and cable-- $10 ($5 labor, $2 for cable and $3 for housing) 4) Replace rear tube-- $6 So, what other work should I be asking the LBS to perform? How often should I have a tune-up performed and the hubs overhauled? Thanks! Answers to things brought up so far: MtnMike-- I don't think I have the skills to perform bicycle maintenance. I'll gladly replace the brakes, struts or radiator on a car, but when it comes to performing fine adjustments, I lack the touch for that. With the help of the campus bike co-op, I tried working on my own bike (and spent lots of $$ on parts in the process), but I've only made things worse. flanso-- Good idea. I'll have to look into it, thanks! Troy_Built-- Oops! duh
That all sounds pretty reasonable. Brake pads, brake cables, shifter cables, cable housings, and tubes/tires are the typical wear items on a bike. Don't be surprised if they mention those things. After that, the drivetrain is next most common thing to wear out. As far as how often to get service, that would depend on three things 1)do you store it outside? 2)do you ride in the rain or mud 3)do you ride a lot of miles? The average recreational cyclist usually doesn't need anything more than a once/year service (maybe less). If your happy with it's performance, keep riding without worries! Enjoy :)
 
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The chain and the cassette have already been replaced, so I think they are probably OK. While haven't replaced the chain rings, they also appear to be in decent condition. Most of the cables have been replaced, with the exception of the front brake cable. How often will the derailleurs and bottom bracket need to be replaced? To answer your questions: 1) Always stored inside. 2) Rarely 3) 40-50 a month, less in the winter. Thanks!
 
That really varries. The deralleur should last several years at least. The first thing to go on a deralleur are the cog teeth, which start to look pointy instead of their normal shape. They can sometimes be replaced independently. If the pivot mechanisms are loose, or the whole thing is bent, it's time for a new deralleur. On the more expensive deralleurs, it might be worth it replace individual pivot parts, but in my experience this is the exception to the rule. Signs of a bad deralleur are poor shifting despite adjusting everything else properly. Bottom brackets used to last a long time when they were the "square taper" design. Then 6-8 years ago the companies started using modified spindles. 5 years ago they started using external bearing setups. Both designs save weight and make the bikes stiffer. The tradeoff is that these tend to wear out faster, and less predictably. I guess the tradeoff is worth it, but it can get costly. Signs of a failed BB are looseness in the cranks, creaking or popping when you pedal, or roughness when turning the pedals.
 
So, I picked up the bike from the shop yesterday. Here was the final bill: Tune-up -- $55 labor Overhaul front and rear hubs-- $30 labor, $5 parts Replace rear tube-- $6 parts Replace rear derailleur cable and housing-- $10 labor, $7 parts With a 10% discount on parts, the bill was $112. It rides just like it did when it was new. Now, the brakes no longer drag, the chain no longer skips, shifting is sharper and any "play" that I used to feel is gone. I'll just keep the chain lubricated and bring it back for another $55 tune-up in six to twelve months.
 
The bike had been in storage for a few months, so prior to storage, I had cleaned the chain (with brake cleaner) and lubed it with copious amounts of motor oil. During the tune-up, the mechanic said there was lots of lubricant on the chain. So, he just wiped the chain clean and told me to run it for a while before lubing it again. While I was at the shop, I did purchase a large bottle of Tri-Flow for $9, so I'll be using that.
 
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