One of the most common complaints that we see on reviews for all bike shops around the country is how expensive it is to build an online bike from the box. We will be the first to say that we understand your hesitation. In some extreme cases, riders might find a bike so inexpensive that it is almost the same cost as building it up.
As online blogs and videos suggest, it is physically possible to build up a bike in 15-20 minutes right from the box. We agree with you, anyone who would charge you $60-120 for a hurried job like that is likely ripping you off. We’ll even go further: rushing through a bike build possibly equates to being careless with both your safety and the longevity of your bike.
A bike, both the frame and the components, have a tendency to get beat up in a box. At a bare minimum, we must inspect every inch of the frame and fork. We must take off and reinstall the cranks, straighten the derailleur hanger, inspect and true the wheels, inspect and adjust the headset, install the stem to the correct torque, grease all of the threads and parts that can bond, adjust the brake calipers, pads, and if applicable, straighten the rotors. We fine tune the brakes and shifting just before our last safety check on all the parts. If we find a manufacturing defect in this full process, we call the build off, and don’t charge you a dime.
Sounds extensive? Maybe, but we refuse to take any shortcuts. Our build price is not determined by a “gut feeling” but is factored by the necessary time it takes to properly build a bike. In a decade of mechanic’s work, I have never once seen a bike that was even close to meeting my bare minimum standards right out of the box, no matter if the bike was $100 or $24,000.
Not only is our work guaranteed, but we go even further. Knowing that cables and parts stretch and wear over a several month break in period, any bike that is bought online and built by us gets a free follow up to ensure that everything is fine tuned.