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Bike shop ripping me off?

Old 06-19-22, 06:23 AM
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ChimeraKC
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Bike shop ripping me off?

This shop is always trying to sell me more than I want and sell me on a new bike. Only game in town. I have 2019 Specialized Allez that needs a new cassette, chain and chainring.
We have waited weeks for a cassette to arrive - I see tons of compatible ones online - and they say they can only get a chainring with the cranks attached. REALLY? I see tons of them for sale without that. They also say the bearings are gone on the rear wheel and I need a new one. I had a Bianchi for ten years and never replaced any wheels. Think these guys are out of it and ripping me off? I am a snowbird and trust my shop in Florida much more but these repairs are needed now. Thanks
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Old 06-19-22, 06:32 AM
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Without taking a look at your bike, and at the local parts availability (not taking that for granted), it's difficult to answer that question - at least for me.
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Old 06-19-22, 06:40 AM
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Obviously, it's not possible to assess the wheel, but the other issues can be resolved easily. Chainrings, cassette and chain, whether your bike is 2X8 - 2X11, are readily available. You might look at Sheldon Brown or YouTube and complete the repairs yourself.
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Old 06-19-22, 07:04 AM
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How many miles on those components
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Old 06-19-22, 07:05 AM
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The shop is incorrect about getting replacement chainrings, so that calls into question all the rest. New shop maybe ?. Or do it yourself.

Last edited by Steve B.; 06-19-22 at 08:04 AM.
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Old 06-19-22, 08:03 AM
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It's always hard for anyone to comment on whether a shop is bad, or not, due to so many unknowns with communications between shop and customer. I always tell people to learn to do some of these things yourself and there is so much info available about how to do anything with YT vids, forums like this one and even many mfrs have info about their products to help with maintenance. Not trying to put shops out of business so even if you still prefer to have them do the work you'll at least be an informed customer and recognize the good from the bad shop. In your case changing out a chain/cassette/chainring are all fairly easy tasks with not a huge investment in tools and asking here can get you tons of help with finding the right parts. Your rear wheel bearings needing replacement may be a little trickier if you have cartridge bearings but if you know what to look for you may find they just need a lube, adjustment or ??? You should ask the shop why they recommend a whole new wheel. I do my own work and haven't had a shop touch my bike in decades but I have listened in to mechanics in shops talking to customers and the advice ranges from scary bad to highly skilled and experienced so much so that they might actually lose a sale on something by telling the customer that something less expensive will be a better choice or even how to fix the problem themselves.

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Old 06-19-22, 08:10 AM
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Just skimming your posts.. this shop sees you as the equivalent of a potted plant. Only game in town... might be how they survive this box store world.

LEARN more... MUCH. They might well stop watering you.

AWFUL nice to have a real bike shop close by...costs MUCH to keep those doors open.
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Old 06-19-22, 08:18 AM
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It is hard to imagine any 2019 Allez that chainrings are not readily available, but they might be Claris 8 speed which was a little weird for 2019, the shop should clearly be explaining this to you.
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Old 06-19-22, 08:22 AM
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I don't think a shop trying to sell you a bike is ripping you off. They are trying to both stay in business and keep you as a customer. The key is how these two motivations overlap and what do their customers think of that. One of the very early lessons I learned about running a business was that there's nearly no way for a shop to make every potential customer happy. There are reasons why a shop takes one path, instead of another, when dealing with their business. Not all these reasons are shared by all, or even acknowledged by some.

I have to admit that I question those who reject options and instead turn them into faults. One might choose to not take the offers up but to claim a crime (stealing, it's what ripping one off means to me) when no harm or loss has happened is stretching things a lot. Andy
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Old 06-19-22, 08:32 AM
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If youre sure that parts are available, source them yourself and take them to the store for fitting.
although you do then assume the responsibility for compatibility.

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Old 06-19-22, 08:56 AM
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As others have said-good idea to learn repair/replace skills. Can be less costly to buy tools (if needed) than to pay someone to do the work. Plus-you will know what/how it was done and because it's YOUR bike, you may take more care than a shop trying to crank out repairs. Luckily I have several good shops nearby if I'm stuck on a repair or need advice. But there still is nothing like the satisfaction of diy. Of course, depending if you like to 'tnker". I do. Many on here with better/more up to date mech. skills than I, who can help if you can supply enough specifics to analyze the problem and offer suggestions.
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Old 06-19-22, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Bike Gremlin View Post
Without taking a look at your bike, and at the local parts availability (not taking that for granted), it's difficult to answer that question - at least for me.
Ok thanks. I just cant imagine having to buy cranks with the chainring. What a ripoff
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Old 06-19-22, 09:57 AM
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it would help to know what components are on the bike, 2019 allez can go from claris to to 105 and looks like as normal a mix of brands shimano, praxis, tectro, sunrace

I don't understand bearing gone on rear wheel, need a new one, unless if ball and cone, the races get destroyed or if cartridge surface got destroyed by not good repleacement technique. any time you don't understand, get the shop to explain in detail

again really hard to diagnose remotely

I like park videos for learning https://www.parktool.com/en-us/blog/repair-help
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Old 06-19-22, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by ChimeraKC View Post
Ok thanks. I just cant imagine having to buy cranks with the chainring. What a ripoff
What brand and model of crank? One or both chainrings? Without knowing this it would be impossible to tell if what the shop is telling you is true. Sometimes if you have to replace both rings a complete crank can actually be cheaper

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Old 06-19-22, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
nearly no way for a shop to make every potential customer happy. Andy
Yes.. and then no. GOOD sales people lay it out to be understood.. the why's. Earns respect,... the BUILDS any business.

Those crank have riveted rings by chance??? Those of course not replaceable. Chain skips under load?
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Old 06-19-22, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Crankycrank View Post
...learn to do some of these things yourself...
Sometimes ya can afford to let others do a certain task for ya, but often ya find ya gotta do it yourself anyway...

Besides that it's Fun, Fun, Fun...
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Old 06-19-22, 10:48 AM
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let's pump the breaks a little bit

#1 - some components / parts are almost impossible to get - many of the large distributors have issues obtaining inventory ( (one example : QBP) and therefore it can be significant challenge for the bike shops to acquire the parts ; many bike shops have resorted to searching and sourcing parts from Amazon and eBay

#2 - individual chainrings can be a challenge to find (depending on model) and can be relatively expensive if they are available - so often it can make more sense to replace the entire (complete) crankset
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Old 06-19-22, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by ChimeraKC View Post
Ok thanks. I just cant imagine having to buy cranks with the chainring. What a ripoff
this is not uncommon - and actually fairly common especially recently
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Old 06-19-22, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by ChimeraKC View Post
Ok thanks. I just cant imagine having to buy cranks with the chainring. What a ripoff
I have never changed chainrings on a crank in 40 years of cycling. I knew they were available, but it was always a very high-end kind of component - like something you'd MAYBE do for a Dura Ace or Super Record crank. When I've changed cranks it was because I broke a crankarm or wanted a different system. If the chainring was worn out, I figured the crank was too... and I've broken enough cranks to not want it to happen again.

Maybe the shop is not being totally square with you, but I don't see that they're ripping you off. It is not a very common task.
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Old 06-19-22, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by ChimeraKC View Post
This shop is always trying to sell me more than I want and sell me on a new bike. Only game in town. I have 2019 Specialized Allez that needs a new cassette, chain and chainring.
We have waited weeks for a cassette to arrive - I see tons of compatible ones online - and they say they can only get a chainring with the cranks attached. REALLY? I see tons of them for sale without that. They also say the bearings are gone on the rear wheel and I need a new one. I had a Bianchi for ten years and never replaced any wheels. Think these guys are out of it and ripping me off? I am a snowbird and trust my shop in Florida much more but these repairs are needed now. Thanks
I am lost on this completely. I could see a chain wearing out after and a cassette, but a chainring? The cranks and chainrings are easily good for 40-25,000 miles. I suppose on could be wore out after 10,000 but I seriously doubt it. How many miles are on this bike since you bought it? Normally cranks come with the chainrings you buy and if for somereason you need a new set of cranks, that is simple. You buy them and install them it is not rocket science. You need tools and have to get educated to what you need. If you ride a lot miles which seems you do given you are wearing out parts, spend some time learning some basic bike mechanic skills. Some things do need a shop or are done so little that the tool is not worth it to buy. However routine work on your bike is within your grasp. Give us the run down on the compenents you have on the bike now and I tell you probably need. A photo of the chain ring would be good. Chains and cassettes are wear items they go bad between different amounts of mileage and conditions.

For the record I usually get 7-10,000 miles on an 11 speed chain before it is stretched too far. This is much more than average but I keep it clean and lubricate it and I don't live in the mountains and tend to spin. I get 20,000 miles on a cassette for the same reasons. I have never worn out a chainring on my bike which has 40,000 miles on it and I bought it in March of 2017. It happens to have the same bottom bracker too never have I touched it and the cranks spin like a top. I mention this because really it is not all the difficult to rigure out with some research. The bike shop is saving you all the research and they are doing everything for you. That is fine and a great service however they will normally only do things a certain way and make it easy on themselves if possible.
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Old 06-19-22, 11:40 AM
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If you need a new chainring, which for a 2019 bike would indicate your doing a lot of distance on it, then which one needs replacing can decide what is the cheaper option, if the inner, normally these are cheap, the outer, then you have to look at the cost vs just replacing the whole crank, as these, esp with newer non-flat designs are are often so close in price to a whole crank, that just replacing the crank is the cheaper option.

Add to this availability, if the LBS is doing a like for like, this may come into play, and like for like can lead to delays in time and increases in cost (you mention compatible parts are available online, 2 question need to be answered by you, did you ask the LBS about these, and/or why didn't you order/fit yourself, as the chainring only need a few tools to replace on a modern bike, hex/torx wrenches and maybe a specific chainring tool, which are is not an expensive tool).

For the bearing in your rear wheel, no mention of what these are, if cartridge, no reason why if your doing the distance to kill a chainring that these won't also need replacing, cartridge bearing are an easily replaceable part, although may not last as long as cup and cone bearing ( the price you pay for super easier serviceability)

With all your issues, you really need to be specific in what bike/parts you have as, as noted by others, the Allez covers many models at different spec points , with different parts.
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Old 06-19-22, 02:38 PM
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I had a new wheel on a new bike that didn't have enough grease and it went bad.
Having caught it relatively early I was able to save the races. The bearings were a couple of pounds for 100 on amazon.
Changing bearings is not complicated or time consuming.

If you have cartridge bearings - I have got loads more life out of a siezed bearing by removing the dust cover, cleaning it thoroughly and regreasing. Zero cost, except time.

Chainrings I have bought from amazon loads if times. I have even set up email alerts through 3rd party sites to keep an eye on the price and get alerted for price drops which amazon do all the time.

The shop has overheads and will be looking out for themselves, just like a car garage.
You can do this work yourself and save a lot of money or let them sell you a bike.

Your call.
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Old 06-19-22, 05:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Aladin View Post
Those crank have riveted rings by chance??? Those of course not replaceable.
I was also thinking that, but it seems unlikely that such a crank would come with a 2019 Specialized Allez, unless the OP got his after it had been scavenged for parts?
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Old 06-19-22, 05:42 PM
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I wore out my inner Ultegra 11 speed chain ring. The cost of replacement was $10. The outer ones tend to be pricier.

It is kind of hard to tell if it needs to be replaced until you put a new chain on. Then you can see gaps when you pull on it, and it will skip under load.
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Old 06-19-22, 05:52 PM
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What a rip-off
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