Was this bad value for money?

barrybridges
barrybridges Posts: 420
edited May 2013 in Workshop
I've just collected my bike from a full service at a very well-known and reputable LBS in the South-East. I haven't really had much of a chance to look things over yet, but will do so tomorrow.

Maybe I'm being a bit naive, but I think I've been slightly diddled.

The service was £110.

I've been charged an additional £97 for parts as follows:

Replacement cables: £55

Replacement bearings: £22

Replacement bar tape: £20

I'm told I also need replacement headset bearings which they have ordered in at £15 and will fit at a later date (paid for later, but no labour cost).

The bike has Campag Centaur groupset.

Ignoring the service charge, I appear to have been stung for the parts at a price which is almost double what I can purchase them for myself. Their invoice states that parts have been charged at "factory cost".

Have I been taken for a ride? £207 for a service seems steep and especially £55 for cables and £20 for tape.

Or is this just a lesson learnt?

Really a shame as it's left a bit of a sour taste after what was otherwise a good experience.
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Comments

  • jibberjim
    jibberjim Posts: 2,810
    Well you can always try challenging the "factory cost" statement, and go to trading standards if the claim is false, but yes, it's extremely excessive pricing, but then you could've just done it yourself.
    Jibbering Sports Stuff: http://jibbering.com/sports/
  • sungod
    sungod Posts: 16,885
    15 quid for the headset and free labour seems like an admision that they stung you on the rest

    shops have a habit of using list price for parts, which considerably inflates costs

    unless you are seriously incapable, get the tools and diy, it's really not that difficult, there are plenty of online guides, plus you can ask on the forum
    my bike - faster than god's and twice as shiny
  • buckmulligan
    buckmulligan Posts: 1,031
    Yeah, check what they've actually put on, but £55 for standard cables is a complete joke, especially considering they'll be buying them in bulk at a considerable discount; if they've given you something fancy like a set of Gore RideOns (which could well have been a 'like-for-like' replacement) then I'd say fair enough. If the invoice says 'factory cost' then you've got grounds to argue!
  • I've never taken a bike to an lbs for servicing or repairs. Judging by your experience I've probably saved enough over the years to pay for a top of range titanium/carbon super bike. Apart from a few jobs, looking after your own bike is fairly straight forward and satisfying and just requires a few basic tools. Lots of books and info on the net for help and guidance.
  • ride_whenever
    ride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    They've said factory cost then they're talking balls, I can't think of anything this side of aligator i links that might be even close to £50 cost. Bearings possibly, as some distributors charge silly money for them. Bar tape, possibly if brookes.
  • jgsi
    jgsi Posts: 5,062
    Putting this way, a set of Jagwire brake and gear,, well .. under 30 quid I'm afraid.
  • nicklouse
    nicklouse Posts: 50,675
    sounds like retail price for most things.

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... elID=48977
    "Do not follow where the path may lead, Go instead where there is no path, and Leave a Trail."
    Parktools :?:SheldonBrown
  • lawrences
    lawrences Posts: 1,011
    20 pounds for tape and then some for fitting it is a piss take. Doing small jobs like that will save you money especially as you can't mess up bar tape you can just unwrap and try again.
  • Since you've got Campag then they will have fitted Campag cables, and as nicklouise has shown you, thats the retail price for a kit of Campag cables.

    What bar tape did they use? You can get bar tape that costs as little a £5 and tape that costs around £40.

    Sure you can buy the parts cheaper from CRC, etc. but your going to a local bike shop and having a service carried out by trained mechanics and helping to keep the shop going.

    You said yourself they were well known and reputable so why so suspicious? Surely they gave you a quote for the service before going ahead anyway. At which point you would have had the chance to question anything.

    To be honest, I don't think you got stung at all.
  • fast as fupp
    fast as fupp Posts: 2,277
    i've paid less for a car service.


    youve been well had off!
    'dont forget lads, one evertonian is worth twenty kopites'
  • ol9
    ol9 Posts: 50
    Were they wearing masks?!? :o
  • jibberjim
    jibberjim Posts: 2,810
    Since you've got Campag then they will have fitted Campag cables, and as nicklouise has shown you, thats the retail price for a kit of Campag cables.

    But they stated they charged "factory price" - which is certainly not retail price...
    Sure you can buy the parts cheaper from CRC, etc. but your going to a local bike shop and having a service carried out by trained mechanics and helping to keep the shop going.

    The 110 quid fee they charged did that. Claiming to charge parts at one price, and then doing it at a much higher one is rather different.
    Jibbering Sports Stuff: http://jibbering.com/sports/
  • barrybridges
    barrybridges Posts: 420
    edited May 2013
    Thanks for your replies.

    Just a clarification as the prices I quoted originally were slightly muddled.

    They have charged:

    £55 for replacement cables

    £30 for replacement hub bearings

    £10.99 for bar tape (not £20 as stated before)

    plus a small amount for a spacer.

    They've said I need new headset bearings which are £15. Ordinarily they would fit these as part of the full service, but they didn't have them in hence why they're saying I can bring the bike back and they will fit them at no cost, other than parts.

    On that basis, I'm not fussed about the cost of the bar tape; I'm just more taken aback at the cost of the cables and bearings.

    To be specific, the invoice says:

    "All parts quoted will be charged at manufacturers [sic] price at time of repairs" - although I was told 'factory price' by the man in the shop. I suppose my point is that I still can't find any campag cable kit for £55 RRP online, other than the single CRC link someone else posted previously. Most of the time the kits cost £35 RRP:

    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=campa ... 24&bih=636

    I do understand that I could have saved this money if I do it myself, but the key issue is that I just don't have time. I would love for nothing more than a full day to myself where I can disassemble the entire bike, clean. degrease and rebuild it properly, but with kids and family that's a bit of a luxury at the moment.

    I'm happy to write this off as one of life's lessons; but money is really tight at the moment and I was just a bit naive in not realising how much these things would cost. £110 is already on the upper end of what you can pay for a service; I didn't realise there'd be an extra £97 of costs and had I known this I'd have thought about whether to go ahead. I wasn't told anything up-front, but then again I never asked.

    Lesson learnt.
  • barrybridges
    barrybridges Posts: 420
    You said yourself they were well known and reputable so why so suspicious? Surely they gave you a quote for the service before going ahead anyway. At which point you would have had the chance to question anything.

    No, they didn't. But that's as much my fault for not asking as much as their's for not telling!

    I was pretty naive and thought that £110 for a service would be just that - £110. I didn't realise it would need £55 of new cables, or £30 of new hub bearings, or a further £15 of headset bearings.

    Never mind, lesson learnt for next time.
  • paul_mck
    paul_mck Posts: 1,058
    FWIW I just bought a complete set of jagwire cables for £23 off ebay. inners outers fixings the lot. the shop will have cable on reels Id had thought and tubs of ferrules and crimps etc. you got well stroked imo.

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/370774429642? ... 1439.l2648
  • rolf_f
    rolf_f Posts: 16,015
    I do understand that I could have saved this money if I do it myself, but the key issue is that I just don't have time. I would love for nothing more than a full day to myself where I can disassemble the entire bike, clean. degrease and rebuild it properly, but with kids and family that's a bit of a luxury at the moment.

    Time vs money balance can be tricky to get right. The problem with paying for servicing though is that it isn't really a great way to maintain a bike - it's much better to do things when they need doing. If you pay for a service, either your bike is already well past it's best running condition or you are going to pay for things you don't need. Eg take the cable set. My Campag Centaur Ribble has 10,000 miles on the clock. So far, I have replaced the gear cable inners. Brake cables are untouched and all the outers are original. It cost about a fiver for the cables (actually, those are a bit cheaper than the ones I wanted but I couldn't source better inners at the LBS at the time - serves me right for not getting the spares in earlier) and they took a few minutes to fit. OK, I replaced them when they broke which isn't completely intelligent but you can't say I didn't maximise their lifespan!! More sensibly I would check their condition inside the hoods on occasion as that was where the failures were.

    Otherwise, the only other replacement on the frame has been the bottom bracket bearings. Those cost £15 but I also payed about £60 for the hex bit and bearing extractor to do the job myself. I suspect that would have been fairly cost neutral but of course, in future, bearing replacements will only cost me the price of the bearing (and a little time).

    Most bike service tasks individually don't take very long to do - there aren't many individual tasks that would, for example, mean that the bike was ever more than about 15 minutes to being rideable again. Stock up on the service parts in advance and all you'll need is to check a Youtube video or two to work out what the process is and you can do most tasks in less time than it will take to put the bike in the car and drive it to the LBS for the service and then pick it up again a few days later.

    £200? That's 2/3rds of a BTwin Triban :lol:
    Faster than a tent.......
  • jordan_217
    jordan_217 Posts: 2,580
    FYI - My LBS just supplied me with some brake and gear inners and outers from their workshop supply - £8. At £55 I think you've been well and truly done over.

    Did they contact you before they carried out any of the additional work, to get your permission?

    Buy yourself a workstand, one of those generic £40 tool sets, some cable cutters and a manual (Zinn or similar) and DIY. That lot would of cost you around £110 but you would have gained the knowledge and tools to repeat the process for free thereafter.
    “Training is like fighting with a gorilla. You don’t stop when you’re tired. You stop when the gorilla is tired.”
  • barrybridges
    barrybridges Posts: 420
    jordan_217 wrote:
    Did they contact you before they carried out any of the additional work, to get your permission?

    No, they didn't - but should they have?

    They're a very well-recognised and popular shop, but their location and potential client base - coupled with my genuine naivety - does make me wonder whether they tried to make a bit of extra money from me, on the basis that a lot of their customers are MAMILs.

    They're not open now until tomorrow but I was planning to give them a call just say I felt a bit short-changed. I doubt there's anything I can really do - and it's probably not worth bothering - but £207 is a lot of money at a time when I'm up to the limit of my overdraft. I'd budgeted £150 and it's left me nothing until payday (but the bike did need doing).
  • giant_man
    giant_man Posts: 6,878
    Not sure why you're ranting about pricing on this. Learn to do it yourself, then you won't have cause to moan imo. Things costs what they cost, particularly from a 'known' LBS ....
  • paul_mck
    paul_mck Posts: 1,058
    well imo they should have called you once they inspected the bike. you cant just go off and change things willy nilly without getting the customers permission.

    @giant man - big words but not everyone has the confidence or time to do the stuff themselves. And despite saying aye just DIY it setting the gears etc can be tricky. Doesnt mean the OP was right to be ripped off, which at £55 for a set of cables PLUS labour, he well and truly was.
  • barrybridges
    barrybridges Posts: 420
    To be fair, what others are saying about me doing it myself - they're right.

    I really should be able to do this myself. For the amount of riding I do and the number of years I've been riding, I should be able to do these tasks.

    As I've said before, time is precious commodity which limits me. A small baby and family commitments mean I barely have time to train, let alone rebuild a bike. If I tried stripping it down and rebuilding it I'd be off-the-bike for about a week based on the time I have to focus on it.

    Also, I lack confidence. I can take things apart just fine, but I have a habit of things going 'ping' when you don't expect them, with the result that it takes ages to put everything back together. I'm sure that once I'd done it once I could do it again without problem, but I just need the confidence.

    I also don't have the stand or many of the tools, so thought it easier to get a professional to do the job.
  • barrybridges
    barrybridges Posts: 420
    paul_mck wrote:
    you cant just go off and change things willy nilly without getting the customers permission.

    The bit I was saddest about was that they've replaced my lovely white bar tape - which goes really well on my bike - with black tape! Just doesn't look right on this:

    http://stormvision.files.wordpress.com/ ... izoard.jpg
  • rolf_f
    rolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Also, I lack confidence. I can take things apart just fine, but I have a habit of things going 'ping' when you don't expect them, with the result that it takes ages to put everything back together. I'm sure that once I'd done it once I could do it again without problem, but I just need the confidence.

    That's understandable but look at it this way. The worst that can happen if you diy, if you err on the side of caution, follow the guidance on the web and are careful is that something will ping off as you say! At that point, you can surrender honourably and go to the LBS and ask for help. If you don't at least try, you'll never get the skills. As for the tools and stand, they needn't cost much and they aren't dead money like service charges are.

    In the old days, folk serviced their own cars - you couldn't afford to get someone else to do it. Bikes are much simpler and paying someone else to do something easy is a luxury. If you can't afford luxuries, you really shouldn't buy them!

    As for the bar tape - it probably wouldn't have needed replacing if it was black in the first place! :lol:
    Faster than a tent.......
  • jordan_217
    jordan_217 Posts: 2,580
    Ok, these are out of stock but to give you an indication:

    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/w ... olkit.html

    and these:

    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/w ... tters.html

    plus this:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1934030988/r ... wo=&hvqmt=

    A torque wrench is handy but not essential and you might want to get some better allen keys but that should be enough to completely service your bike. For less than you've been charged here you can buy all stuff to DIY and the Zinn book is really easy to follow. It's daunting but just take your time be methodical and you'll be fine. Take pictures of how things look before you remove them if that makes it easier.

    Some disposable gloves are handy as is a little magnetic dish or a jam jar for holding any nuts/bolts/etc you remove. There's no need to buy Park and other expensive brands, workshops need high quality kit as they're used on a daily basis. A DIY mechanic doesn't need the same level of quality as they're not used as frequently.

    I appreciate that you said time is tight. I have a young family and a lengthy commute but now I'm a bit more confident I managed to completely strip, clean, grease, reassemble and service (new chain, cables, pads, tape, the works) my bike in 4 hours after the kids went to bed. There's no reason why you can't break the service down into manageable chunks and once it's done then you should be ok for 6-12 months. You might need to fettle with the indexing after a few weeks of replacing the cables but thats not unusual and will take a few minutes once you've got the hang of it.
    “Training is like fighting with a gorilla. You don’t stop when you’re tired. You stop when the gorilla is tired.”
  • giant_man
    giant_man Posts: 6,878
    paul_mck wrote:
    well imo they should have called you once they inspected the bike. you cant just go off and change things willy nilly without getting the customers permission.

    @giant man - big words but not everyone has the confidence or time to do the stuff themselves. And despite saying aye just DIY it setting the gears etc can be tricky. Doesnt mean the OP was right to be ripped off, which at £55 for a set of cables PLUS labour, he well and truly was.
    Not big words mate just the facts. If you come across as an amateur, then you should be prepared to be ripped off quite honestly. The OP didn't exactly help himself did he. Bike shops come in all shapes and sizes and there are good and bad of course. The OP's one he decided to go to can't be the only one in his area. Perhaps a little more thought and research before he took it to this particular place might have helped his cause, and left more cash in his wallet.
  • paul_mck
    paul_mck Posts: 1,058
    lmao! Really?
  • wheels50
    wheels50 Posts: 8
    I'd say you've been well and truly had! Those prices are astonishingly high. Learn to do it yourself and save getting ripped off next time.
  • buckmulligan
    buckmulligan Posts: 1,031
    I can definitely sympathise with your situation. I was thinking of sticking my bike in for a full service now that the weather is clearing up; I'm perfectly capable of doing everything myself, just don't have the time! When I get a spare couple of hours at the weekend I want to be out on it not cleaning it, but perhaps not if it's going to end up like this. They certainly should have consulted you first, especially with non-essential items like bar tape!
    giant man wrote:
    If you come across as an amateur, then you should be prepared to be ripped off quite honestly.

    What a tw@t.
  • edten
    edten Posts: 228
    Apologies if already asked, I didn't read every post, but did they replace inners and outers for brake and gear? If so £55 is not too far from the price of a new Campag cableset. Bike services are a bit of a con, as the checks are so simple. This is the same for all bike services at all shops, in my experience at least. The rest of the costs seem round about there. You have to remember they are there to make money not just to break even.
  • barrybridges
    barrybridges Posts: 420
    giant man wrote:
    paul_mck wrote:
    well imo they should have called you once they inspected the bike. you cant just go off and change things willy nilly without getting the customers permission.

    @giant man - big words but not everyone has the confidence or time to do the stuff themselves. And despite saying aye just DIY it setting the gears etc can be tricky. Doesnt mean the OP was right to be ripped off, which at £55 for a set of cables PLUS labour, he well and truly was.
    Not big words mate just the facts. If you come across as an amateur, then you should be prepared to be ripped off quite honestly. The OP didn't exactly help himself did he. Bike shops come in all shapes and sizes and there are good and bad of course. The OP's one he decided to go to can't be the only one in his area. Perhaps a little more thought and research before he took it to this particular place might have helped his cause, and left more cash in his wallet.

    Ouch. What a horrible, harsh and - frankly - undeserved thing to say.

    In actual fact, this LBS is one of the best-known ones in the South-East and has been recommended to me countless times for its service, hence why I took it there. It's the only place within 30 minutes' drive that people name when it comes to being a 'proper' bike shop.

    It was also the only place nearby that specialise in Campag servicing; given I was having issues with my right ultrashift there was a very logical reason why I took my bike to them. I didn't want to take it to Joe Bloggs down the road who told me that 'all gears are the same really'.

    I don't think I came across as an amateur to them at all; but even if I did, that's not an excuse at any point for someone to artificially inflate the prices for parts.