bicycle repair - DIY or get an expert?
August 16, 2009 2:12 PM Subscribe
Should I take my cheap bike in for a professional tune up, or try to do it myself?
posted by sarahj to sports, hobbies, & recreation (11 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I bought a Ross 'Adventurer' road bike on Craigslist in April for $40. I have no idea how old it is, but the guy who sold it to me had found it in his basement and was selling it for some extra money. I steel wool-ed off what rust I could and changed the grip tape and it's been great except a few problems - for example, the seat creaks and wobbles a little bit when riding due to a missing screw, and as of about a week ago the back brake lever won't depress at all (not that it worked all that well before...).
I love this bike though and have been riding around town constantly. I was able to fix the front brake's problems myself but can't figure out what's wrong with the back one. I don't know how much a bike tune-up would cost me, but I'm guessing it would probably cost the same or more than I paid for the bike. I would definitely prefer to fix things myself, but this brake thing seems to be way over my skill level, and an expert would most likely find other problems I can't identify (but which might cost me even more to get fixed?) I'm also not sure because it's getting late in the season (even though I plan on riding it as much as possible into the fall/winter) - and (this is silly) I'm slightly concerned about not having it for a few days (i might have to walk somewhere!) Would it be worth it to take this bike in to a shop for a tune-up? Or should I persevere in attempting to do it myself (and how?)?