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Bike repair dispute and advice

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Bike repair dispute and advice

13 May 2017 12:29

My sister purchased a secondhand hybrid and D lock for £155 from a bike recycling centre and workshop on 19th November 2016. The bikes are fully serviced and have a 3 month guarantee. She used it for commuting, so it would cover about 10 miles per day on average. Bike seemed in good condition when it was purchased. Bike was stored in a shed at home and a bike shed at work so was kept dry and stored properly.

She left the country on 21st February 2017, so the bike was in proper use for about 3 months. After this, I used it occasionally on weekends for short journeys.

Fast forward to Tuesday 2nd May 2017, when I started to us it for commuting. The first day was fine, but on the journey home on Wednesday 3rd May, I noticed some grinding/scraping noises from the back wheel. I used it on the Thursday and Friday and then took it to Go Outdoors to see if they could fix it.

They called me to say it wasn't economically viable to fix it as the back tyre and brake pads needed replacing. The bearings in the hub were pitted and he said it was completely dry so the rear wheel needed replacing. He also said the chain was stretched and worn, which was affecting the cassette.

I took it back to where the bike was purchased on 12th May 2017. He kept insisting it was out of guarantee so they had no obligation to do anything. I stated that less than 6 months had elapsed since the bike was purchased and that it had only really been used for just over 3 months. I questioned if it was reasonable for a back tyre to only last for such a short period of time. He stated although the bikes are serviced, the hub of the back tyre may not have been inspected. Anyway, he said he would have a look at it, but would make no promises.

He called me later that day to say that there was considerable wear on the brake pads and that the chain was worn. He stated this was evidence the bike was used considerably. I queried what the definition of 'considerable usage' was as I knew it wasn't used that much. They offered to replace the back tyre and waive the labour costs. Therefore I would have to pay £32 for the replacement tyre. I said I would get back to him, so they have the bike at the moment.

Should I just pay the £32 and be done with them? Is there anything I can do and is there any recourse regarding the guarantee? Based on what I've said about the usage, should I expect the rear tyre to last longer?
leeboy105
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13 May 2017 15:32

Regardless of the tyre, you've still got the problem of bad/worn bearings, the chain, and possibly the cassette.
If you know of someone who does their own bike repairs, I'd ask them for help.
Look at the teeth on the cassette - if they look worn like 'sharks teeth' then the cassette will probably need to be replaced - using a new chain on a worn cassette doesn't usually work well.

You should also ask the bike repair shop about the cost of them doing it - and for the bearings ask about just replacing and lubricating the bearings without installing a new hub/wheel.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA
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Re:

13 May 2017 19:26

JayKosta wrote:If you know of someone who does their own bike repairs, I'd ask them for help.
Definitely this.

It sounds like you're in a bit of a pickle, leeboy105, seeing as the warranty has expired (not sure you can do anything about that), and since the place you bought the bike at doesn't seem to be willing to work with you. (Other than getting another £32 out of you... couldn't you get the tire somewhere else and just replace it yourself, or have a buddy do it for free? Changing a tire really doesn't require all that much labor...)

From your description it sounds like the rear wheel may actually need quite a bit of repair and/or part replacing, if you think the bike is worth it I would get it done. But I would do it elsewhere than the place where you had purchased the bike at, and I would do no further business with them. I mean, if they're accusing you of putting more miles on the bike than you actually have, that is a red flag for me.
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13 May 2017 22:49

Thanks for the replies.

I'm sorry about the confusion but the tyres are okay (I changed these myself to more puncture resistant ones).

My dispute really is how long the back wheel should last. The hub and bearings have worn out in less than 6 months, with what I deem to be limited usage. Is it reasonable to expect the back wheel to last longer?
leeboy105
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Re:

14 May 2017 00:19

leeboy105 wrote:Thanks for the replies.

I'm sorry about the confusion but the tyres are okay (I changed these myself to more puncture resistant ones).

My dispute really is how long the back wheel should last. The hub and bearings have worn out in less than 6 months, with what I deem to be limited usage. Is it reasonable to expect the back wheel to last longer?
If you're hearing/feeling some grind-like noises in your back hub I would think you shouldn't expect much more life out of that rear hub.

I will, respectfully, defer my opinion to Jay Kosta's, however.
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Re: Re:

14 May 2017 00:37

Tricycle Rider wrote:
leeboy105 wrote:Thanks for the replies.

I'm sorry about the confusion but the tyres are okay (I changed these myself to more puncture resistant ones).

My dispute really is how long the back wheel should last. The hub and bearings have worn out in less than 6 months, with what I deem to be limited usage. Is it reasonable to expect the back wheel to last longer?
If you're hearing/feeling some grind-like noises in your back hub I would think you shouldn't expect much more life out of that rear hub.

I will, respectfully, defer my opinion to Jay Kosta's, however.


I think my message may have been misinterpreted slightly. My questions boils down to: if you were to buy a secondhand bike that was serviced from a bike workshop, would you expect the rear wheel to need replacing within less than 6 months with only mild usage?

I'm not completely intransigent about this, I'm posting as I want to know if my views needs changing and if my idea of a serviced bike is wrong.
leeboy105
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Re: Bike repair dispute and advice

14 May 2017 13:11

leeboy105 wrote:...
on Wednesday 3rd May, I noticed some grinding/scraping noises from the back wheel. I used it on the Thursday and Friday and then took it to Go Outdoors to see if they could fix it.
...

-----------------
A properly lubricated chain / wheel / bearings / cassette should last for a fairly long time.
And it does seem that the bearings were not adequately lubed at the time the bike was purchased.
But it also seems that you ignored the initial noise and continued to use the bike for 2 days - that probably made the damage much worse.

What is the condition of the wheel now - is it fully assembled? Did the bike shop make any attempt to replace or grease the bearings?
Does the wheel spin properly on the axle, does the wheel 'wobble' on the axle?

You should be able to find books about bicycle repair at a library, some special tools might be needed, and DIY is greasy and messy, but it's not 'rocket science'.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA
JayKosta
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Re: Bike repair dispute and advice

14 May 2017 14:16

JayKosta wrote:
leeboy105 wrote:...
on Wednesday 3rd May, I noticed some grinding/scraping noises from the back wheel. I used it on the Thursday and Friday and then took it to Go Outdoors to see if they could fix it.
...

-----------------
A properly lubricated chain / wheel / bearings / cassette should last for a fairly long time.
And it does seem that the bearings were not adequately lubed at the time the bike was purchased.
But it also seems that you ignored the initial noise and continued to use the bike for 2 days - that probably made the damage much worse.

What is the condition of the wheel now - is it fully assembled? Did the bike shop make any attempt to replace or grease the bearings?
Does the wheel spin properly on the axle, does the wheel 'wobble' on the axle?

You should be able to find books about bicycle repair at a library, some special tools might be needed, and DIY is greasy and messy, but it's not 'rocket science'.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA


The wheel is still on the bike. It still works, but makes a scraping noise. They just said the rear wheel needs to be replaced. It still spins, but stops fairly quickly in comparison with the front wheel. When spinning the wheel, if you place your hand on the frame you can feel the vibrations.
leeboy105
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14 May 2017 15:17

Sounds like it simply needs the bearings replaced. Unless they have really damaged the inside of the hub it should be fine after that. You will still have the drivechain problems though. £155 is not much, even for a secondhand bike. If they were to replace bearings, chain, cassette and chainrings before selling it you're lookin at adding 100 quid to the price and it's probably not economically viable for them.
Vincenzo Nibali:
"I know how to ride a bike"

Reduce your carbon footprint, ride steel.
User avatar King Boonen
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Re: Bike repair dispute and advice

14 May 2017 16:16

leeboy105 wrote:...
The wheel is still on the bike. It still works, but makes a scraping noise. They just said the rear wheel needs to be replaced. It still spins, but stops fairly quickly in comparison with the front wheel. When spinning the wheel, if you place your hand on the frame you can feel the vibrations.

-----------------------------
It might be as simple as the rear wheel needing a basic bearing 'clean and lube', but you can't tell until it is taken apart and inspected.
That's not really complicated, but it might be more than where you bought it want to do if they aren't bike 'mechanics'.

You need to find someone who has some experince and mechanical skills to look at it. There are many variations of the bearings and I can't give detailed info without actually seeing and handling it.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA
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Re: Re:

15 May 2017 20:47

leeboy105 wrote:
I think my message may have been misinterpreted slightly. My questions boils down to: if you were to buy a secondhand bike that was serviced from a bike workshop, would you expect the rear wheel to need replacing within less than 6 months with only mild usage?

I'm not completely intransigent about this, I'm posting as I want to know if my views needs changing and if my idea of a serviced bike is wrong.
It's really hard to say seeing as I don't know what kind of state the bike was in when you had first purchased it. If it was merely under a 3-month warranty, though, I can only let my imagination wander. (I guess you got your money's worth when the parts started breaking down?)

The bike and bike part recycling shop I do my business with have a policy of "no returns, no exchanges - all sales are final". So in a situation like that it's a bit of a treasure hunt, and you really have to know what you're looking for.
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Re:

15 May 2017 21:49

King Boonen wrote:Sounds like it simply needs the bearings replaced. Unless they have really damaged the inside of the hub it should be fine after that. You will still have the drivechain problems though. £155 is not much, even for a secondhand bike. If they were to replace bearings, chain, cassette and chainrings before selling it you're lookin at adding 100 quid to the price and it's probably not economically viable for them.
Does the 100 quid include just parts, or are you including labor cost as well, KB? And how fancy do you want to get with the parts?

It may still be a perfectly good bike otherwise, but it sounds like it may need a little bit of work. (And money.)


I'd love to take a look at your bike, leeboy, but unfortunately I live on the other side of the pond. :(
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15 May 2017 22:46

leeboy105
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Re: Re:

16 May 2017 08:27

Tricycle Rider wrote:
King Boonen wrote:Sounds like it simply needs the bearings replaced. Unless they have really damaged the inside of the hub it should be fine after that. You will still have the drivechain problems though. £155 is not much, even for a secondhand bike. If they were to replace bearings, chain, cassette and chainrings before selling it you're lookin at adding 100 quid to the price and it's probably not economically viable for them.
Does the 100 quid include just parts, or are you including labor cost as well, KB? And how fancy do you want to get with the parts?

It may still be a perfectly good bike otherwise, but it sounds like it may need a little bit of work. (And money.)


I'd love to take a look at your bike, leeboy, but unfortunately I live on the other side of the pond. :(


That would be the addition value added to the bike if a shop were going to do the work before selling it on, assuming fairly low-rent parts are used. It may be worth it to a customer depending on what the bike is used for and hoew good a condition the rest of the bike is in, but to a shop trying to turn a profit that probably takes it over a value where they can make a reasonable margin. When you hit the £250-300 mark you start to get into cheap, basic, new hybrid territory (and some cheap road bikes and MTBs).
Vincenzo Nibali:
"I know how to ride a bike"

Reduce your carbon footprint, ride steel.
User avatar King Boonen
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Re:

16 May 2017 08:39

leeboy105 wrote:https://twitter.com/cardiffwheels/status/796820024866574336

That's the bike if you're curious.


Ok, they say cassette but that looks like a 6-7 speed freewheel to me, although it's hard to tell from the picture. We'd need to know if we were going to recommend a replacement wheel but they can be picked up pretty cheap new.

It says they replaced the chain and cassette. If there is significant wear on the cassette after 6 months of fairly light use then that would suggest the chainrings should have been changed too. Not sure how easy it is to get hold of those old 4-arm symmetrical rings I'm afraid. I would be worried that if you only replaced the chain and cassette/freewheel then you'd get the same problem down the line. Have any problems with the chain jumping or not shifting gears been noted?

Without actually having the bike in hand it's difficult to really tell what's needed. It could just be a hub service and new bearings which should cost around £20-30. It could be a new wheel, cassette/freewheel, chain and chainrings which could easily go up over £100.



To answer this "My questions boils down to: if you were to buy a secondhand bike that was serviced from a bike workshop, would you expect the rear wheel to need replacing within less than 6 months with only mild usage?"

I'm afraid it's one of the pitfalls of buying used. In all honesty I'm not hugely surprised the wheel needs work (I'm guessing it's not been serviced in those 6 months?). Needing to replace the whole wheel is slightly surprising. I would have thought just changing the bearings would be fine, but I can't know without having it in hand.
Vincenzo Nibali:
"I know how to ride a bike"

Reduce your carbon footprint, ride steel.
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16 May 2017 13:12

You can also look for a local 'bike club' in your area to see if one of their members who is familiar with bike repair could at least take a look and explain to you what problems they see.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA
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Re:

17 May 2017 14:49

leeboy105 wrote:https://twitter.com/cardiffwheels/status/796820024866574336

That's the bike if you're curious.
Ooooh, purrrdy. Love vintage bikes!

I take it the frame is still okay? As in no rust, no cracks and such?

Who has the bike now... is it still at the shop where you bought it?
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17 May 2017 18:02

Still at the bike shop. 2 places have assessed it and have said the back wheel needs replacing as the hub is shot. They said they'd change it for £32 and waive the labour costs. They also offered a good price for the brake pads, so they'll replace them as well and also waive the labour costs for that. The frame is completely fine. Main thing now is to try and maintain it. Might take a course of just use a combination of youtube and different websies.
leeboy105
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Re:

17 May 2017 20:58

leeboy105 wrote:Still at the bike shop. 2 places have assessed it and have said the back wheel needs replacing as the hub is shot. They said they'd change it for £32 and waive the labour costs. They also offered a good price for the brake pads, so they'll replace them as well and also waive the labour costs for that. The frame is completely fine. Main thing now is to try and maintain it. Might take a course of just use a combination of youtube and different websies.
I'm a bit confused - is it just the tire or the whole rear wheel they are offering to replace for £32?

Apologies if I'm misunderstanding you, I'm a bit slow sometimes.
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Re: Re:

17 May 2017 21:33

Tricycle Rider wrote:
leeboy105 wrote:Still at the bike shop. 2 places have assessed it and have said the back wheel needs replacing as the hub is shot. They said they'd change it for £32 and waive the labour costs. They also offered a good price for the brake pads, so they'll replace them as well and also waive the labour costs for that. The frame is completely fine. Main thing now is to try and maintain it. Might take a course of just use a combination of youtube and different websies.
I'm a bit confused - is it just the tire or the whole rear wheel they are offering to replace for £32?

Apologies if I'm misunderstanding you, I'm a bit slow sometimes.


The tyres are fine, I changed those myself. Disregard any mentions of tyres from before. It's £32 to replace the rear wheel, which they've said is new as they had to order it in.
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