Bicycle Mechanic

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous

I've had it with my bicycle shop and I'd like to find an independent mechanic who does great work on racing bikes. Mine is a steel Italian one, and i need a wheel built right now and will need periodic tuning and repairs.
Can anyone recommend a good mechanic or a good shop for me? I live in Brooklyn Heights.
Thanks.

Anonymous's picture
<a href="http://www.OhReallyOreilly.com">Peter O'Reilly</a> (not verified)
most local, independent and dear satisfaction

Can anyone recommend a good mechanic or a good shop for me?

You.

You may not save much money or time in the immediate future but once you learn the ropes, you will do so many times over and with the confidence of knowing that the work was done right. Typically after the 1st or 2nd time, the tools have paid for themselves and at such time you become proficient enough to not bother with bike shops anymore.

Above all else, it's hard to beat the satisfaction and assurance of doing one's own work. That's priceless in my book.

Pick up a bike repair/maintenance book and acquire the tools as needed to to each task. It's an old and tired cliche, but it is really true: working on a bike is not rocket science.

Just concentrate on learning one task at a time - like adjusting your gearing or truing a wheel. If you get stuck, you always have a bike shop to relieve you. A good shop will let you sit in and observe a mechanic's work to see what went wrong and learn from there.

Good luck.

Anonymous's picture
Allen Kraus (not verified)

Peter, Thanks very much for your thoughtful response. Apartment living is a bit hard for this, but you're right about the way to handle this over the long term. Allen

Anonymous's picture
<a href="http://www.OhReallyOreilly.com">Peter O'Reilly</a> (not verified)
Apartment living - no problem

"You really do not need much space for such. For instance, all of my tools, spare cables, chains, small parts and grease and what not are contained in a single shoe box. Add to that one truing stand which folds up compactly (approx 3""x1'x3') and a full size repair stand that also folds up to a compact size of approx 1'x1'x4'.

All done while (originally) living in an apartment so small, the only thing one could lose is their mind. (I'm only 1/2 kidding about this.)"

Anonymous's picture
"Chainwheel" (not verified)
Peter is right

"Knowing how to maintain your own bike is a good thing. It's not rocket science, and many adjustments just take time to get perfect. Working on your own bike, you're more likely to take the necessary time to get it right. And the skills you learn may bail you out if you have a problem on the road.

Routine maintenance such as replacing a chain, cassette, cables, or adjusting derailleurs should certainly not require a trip to the shop.

""Chainwheel"""

Anonymous's picture
Sheila (not verified)
Mechanic

You also might want to try On the Move on 7th Avenue between 12th and 13th Sts. The Mechanic is a former racer and specializes in roadbikes. The shop is small and a bit crowded on weekends. During the week is a good time to go. The mechanics name is Valdimer. He has been working on my bikes forever. His was trained as an engineer and has an understanding beyond the mechanics of a road bike. He is very percise. Vald has built several pairs of wheels for me, the never seem to go out of true. The spoke tension is always perfect.

I agree, Mike is also good

Anonymous's picture
JP (not verified)

nm

Anonymous's picture
Tim Andon (not verified)

Try R & A 5th ave near Baltic bklyn. Not to far from you.

Anonymous's picture
Allen Kraus (not verified)

Thanks, but R&A's the problem.

Anonymous's picture
Gordo (not verified)
Mechanic

"Allen,

I too have had problems with R&A. I'm surprised they have such a following in Brooklyn. I live very close to the shop and try again and again to give them my business, but their prices are ALWAYS 30-40% higher than other shops in the area - computers, gloves, seatposts, everything.

In addition, the price list for tools and accessories seems to vary depending on the mood of the owner. I had to buy chain pins a few times in the last year. The first time I bought 2 for $3. The second time I was quoted $4. It seemed like they were making up the price on the spot.

Plus, if your bike's not worth $3000, they look at you like they have better things to do than adjust your ""piddly little Ultegra derailleur"" for $20.

I've found another shop relatively close by: The Bicycle Station on Vanderbilt and Bergen. The owner/mechanic Mike Rodriguez is nice, knowledgable, and expert. He often stays open late to take in extra walk-in business.

Skip R&A and go a few extra blocks into the 'hood to the Bicycle Station.

Good luck,
- Gordo"

Anonymous's picture
Allen Kraus (not verified)

Gordo, Thanks very much. You're the second person to recommend Mike. I'll try him. Allen

Anonymous's picture
seth (not verified)
Second the Bicycle Station

I'll keep my mouth shut about R&A.

Anonymous's picture
Allen Kraus (not verified)

Thanks very much for the response. I'll go see mike tomorrow.

Anonymous's picture
Eloy Anzola (not verified)
R&A is bad. Park tools are cool.

I too live a few blocks away from R&A. They have some great gear, but they are, however, the single WORST bicycle shop in New York City.

The bicycle station is worth a try. I had great experieces in Manhattan with Sid's and TOGA (west end).

I started last year and do most of my own repairs. You won't need a truing or repair stand to begin, just some tools.

This has almost everything you'll need, except for wire cutters:
http://www.performancebike.com/shop/Profile.cfm?SKU=16017

The park tool website has awesome instrucctions on how to work on the bike..., my keyboard is all greasy because of them:
http://www.parktool.com/repair_help/index.shtml

hope this helps,
good luck,

Eloy

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