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Wrenches / Shop Employees, What's Your Biggest Pet Peeve?

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5/1/2016 2:05 PM

responsiblepirate wrote:

I "wrenched" for 6/7 years whilst at uni and honestly the thing that annoys me the most (and this wont be popular), is bike ...more

No arguments here. That drives me crazy too. There are way too many mechanics who have that elitist attitude because they can build a wheel or do a fork overhaul. Guess what - those aren't hard to do. It usually comes with guys who have just enough wrenching experience mixed with a lack of wisdom. Rarely do the older shop mechanics who have nothing to prove display that attitude.

But I suppose if you get enough sales staff coming back stealing your tools or rounding out bolts along with dumb customers you'd probably feel elitist too. lol

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5/1/2016 5:48 PM

1. Engineers - Countless times being told that what your doing is easy, and its "just a bike" or... " i can do that myself"

It always amazed me how all of a sudden, being an engineer makes your a master of all trades ( including bicycle repairs) whilst i understand that engineers are some rather onto it folk and pretty well mechanically minded, but hell man. I do all my own car repairs, but by no means am I a Car mechanic?

2. Non-workshop based staff taking tools and not putting them back, all too often are we searching for that elusive 5mm or pedal wrench.

3. My skills and tools are my Job, if I let you use them and show you how - I'll have no bikes to work on and will be worth nothing to my employer!

4. "it's just a bike" - People believe that bikes are a hassle free way of commuting. However don't stop for a second to think about the damage this incurs to your bike if not maintained and tuned correctly.

5. "Mountain bikers" Just cause your bike has gears does not make you a mountain biker..

6. " oh yeah i ride downhill" - Rides at local Xc trails...

and one of the biggest is....

JRA - JUST RIDING ALONG

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5/1/2016 5:56 PM

ThomDawson wrote:

When people act like customers owe shop hands something more than just the money

I think your missing the point...

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5/1/2016 10:05 PM

my favorite was the guy who pulled his 15 year old bike out from the shed and then complained because it was going to take a day or two.

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5/2/2016 10:33 AM

thom9719 wrote:

my favorite was the guy who pulled his 15 year old bike out from the shed and then complained because it was going to take a ...more

YES! never fails. oh, memorial day weekend is coming up and i havent used my bike in a year? better take it to the bike shop for instant service because nobody else had this thought. having to explain to people that there is a queue for service that spans a week in the "bike season" was always a thorn

two of my favorite home bike mechanic situations ever:

1. the guy who COVERED his drivetrain in the thickest red wax grease i have ever seen. the only thing we could think of was that is was chainsaw wax? we could not get ANY of it off. he was complaining of his bike not being able to shift. good thing it was an XT/XTR build on a full suspension. his repair totaled a few hundred in parts...

2. the genius who threaded a left pedal onto a right crank arm. ALL THE WAY IN. this one blew my mind. it took a while for me to explain why this was bad. and why he needed new cranks (he was getting clipless put on). i think we might have helicoiled for him though.

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5/3/2016 11:02 AM

1. Customers who hand over their bike, then follow you back inside the shop and won't stop talking... I have your bike, I know what your chief complaint is, I made a ticket and probably gave you an estimate on how long it would take... now... GET OUT OF MY SHOP AND GO AWAY... until I call you to say your bike is ready to pick up!

2. Customers who... when you explain how unsafe something is on their bike and what it would take to make it safe to ride, tell you, "I don't want all that done, I just want you to adjust the ______ so I can ride it!"

3. The GMOBs who slink around the racks and cases causing you to have to keep an eye on them and still try to get bikes done, only to catch one pocketing something and denying it while you tell them not only did you SEE them pocket it... but the CAMERA did too! Then they pull it out of their pocket all angry-like, swearing they'll NEVER come in here again to buy anything!

4. All the people who come in with their soccer balls and basketballs asking to use your air hose... or asking YOU to air it up for them.

5. Homebrew eBikes or gas engine converted bikes... and a pretty sketchy bike somewhere beneath all that crap

6. Anyone who has some personal/business dealing with the owner (read: the insurance agent, vendor, neighbor... etc) and buddies up to them, then always expects free and 'head-of-the-line' service! Also when these people come in and ask for the head mechanic because no one else apparently should touch this person's bike!... "Is 'The Dude' here?" "No, he's off today, what can I help you with?" "Naw... I'll wait for 'The Dude' to come back. What's his number? Just want to ask him a question!".

7. The whole tool/bench respect issue!

8. The one-time customer who you treated really nice... then forms some sort of sad attachment to you and drops by almost EVERY DAY just to hangout and chat with you while you work! Usually full of newbie questions or the other guy who reads bike/product reviews as a religion and feels he can update you on all the latest shit in the bikeworld while you try working.

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Halfway into the first decade of the second half of the first century of my life... still riding!

5/3/2016 11:10 AM

Let's not forget the local bottle collector/psychopath and his bike that is so sticky and disgusting you have to wear gloves just to touch it.

Bu he always pays in cash so you grin and bear it.

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5/3/2016 12:39 PM

1. The customer(and family) rolling in late on a Friday to get their bikes tuned for the vacation, and they needs them for tomorrow, or actually they need them right now. Oh, and did I forget to mention the bikes look like they have been sitting under the porch for the last 3+ years and that someone intentionally through salt all over them, just to create the perfect amount of rust.....

2. The customer who is constantly concerned about tire pressure on their Huffy, and on a similar topic the customer who accuses you of "stealing" the valve cap when you put some air in.

3. The customer who says "hey, it's just a bike shop!" as if being covered in grease, while selling some tri-bars, while answering the phone, all while watching a customer disassemble their entire bike in the parking lot (just to change a flat) because you had to ask them not to do it in the shop is the reason you work in a shop, because of how much you love all of that.

4. The engineer, mechanic, what have you that insist they can work on their own bike... actually that may be the best part of working a shop.... fixing their mistakes

But hey, I would rather be still working in a shop.

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5/3/2016 1:29 PM
Edited Date/Time: 5/3/2016 1:35 PM

Too many to list. I started to but then my phone crashed after about 500 words and I can't be arsed to retype it.

I think if I can go through a week without hearing 'I can buy a car for that much' I'll dance a jig.


Edit2: As above, the sad guy you were nice to once and now won't leave you alone as per above. Oh my god, fuck off I have work to do.

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5/3/2016 5:21 PM

Lapierreloosely wrote:

1. Engineers - Countless times being told that what your doing is easy, and its "just a bike" or... " i can do that myself"

...more

So there's another side to #1 that's probably brought on by all of the know-it-all engineers out there. If you screw up something simple as an engineer you'll get laughed at for years to come. I worked part time at a shop on the weekends while I worked full time at my first engineering job. I stripped a bolt one time and heard about it for the rest of the time I worked there. The more pompous you are, the worse it is. Luckily I left the engineering hat at home when I went to the bike shop. Some of the crap the guys gave me after that is pretty funny in hindsight.

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5/4/2016 4:36 AM

ZKPatterson wrote:

So there's another side to #1 that's probably brought on by all of the know-it-all engineers out there. If you screw up ...more

In my final year of university and had already done about 4 years in industry on shopfloor, i was working part time wrenching and a guy returned a brand new bike claiming the front chainring teeth had snapped off- they were the shift teeth, he then claimed "i think id know, im an aerospace engineer", asked him where he got his degree, what company he worked for, why he was in this part of the country as there are no aerospace companies in this area, turns out this guy worked on the shop floor of an aerospace subcontractor making o rings or some shit, pressed a button on a machine and therefore was an engineer...... GTFO. "im an engineer" is a lie, 99% of time, Everytime.

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5/4/2016 10:49 AM

Man, I'm glad i don't go to some of your shops. Don't like people watching you?! Really?

A friend of mine wrenched on a bike that smelled like piss. He said to his buddy, "Greg, your bike smelled like piss", to which Greg replied "yeah, the derailleur was frozen and i couldn't shift so i pissed all over it." Damn, that shop wrench was pissed off at that reply. hahaha

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5/4/2016 12:13 PM

radair wrote:

Man, I'm glad i don't go to some of your shops. Don't like people watching you?! Really?

A friend of mine wrenched on a bike ...more

No way man, youre missing out on that whole "moody wrench who everybody is afraid of talking to" experience. I dont trust any shop wrench who will actually chat with me. the more unpleasant they are they more they know their shit.

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5/4/2016 12:21 PM

Yeh fuck having people watch me do my job. Hated it as a mechanic hated it as a gas engineer.

I don't like people peering over my shoulder to read what I'm reading or typing either.

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5/4/2016 12:26 PM

scarface wrote:

No way man, youre missing out on that whole "moody wrench who everybody is afraid of talking to" experience. I dont trust any ...more

Some truth to that. The biggest prick i know is a very good mechanic.

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5/4/2016 7:00 PM

radair wrote:

Man, I'm glad i don't go to some of your shops. Don't like people watching you?! Really?

A friend of mine wrenched on a bike ...more

scarface wrote:

No way man, youre missing out on that whole "moody wrench who everybody is afraid of talking to" experience. I dont trust any ...more

The salty disgruntled wrench is my favorite character by a long shot.

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I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.