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 Post subject: To pay or to DIY
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 1:44 am 
Old School Hero

Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:28 pm
Posts: 173
While I do most of my bike maintenance myself, I don't have any specialist tools apart from a peddle spanner. Any bb, free wheel, bearing etc, related jobs going to the LBS. This hasn't been too bad over the years as I usually changed bikes before serious work was needed. I find I am spending more nowadays though as I am keeping bikes longer.

At what point does it become cost effective to buy specialist tools? For example... I currently need a cassette changing and new front rings fitted I would expect this to be about £20 quid or so at my LBS (+ any other unexpected work that might be needed ?). This might not sound a lot but being currently unemployed means I have more time on my hands than money.How many times would I need to do these jobs to make it worthwhile buying the tools?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 2:01 am 
Moderator /Lincs, E & S Yorks Deputy AEC
Moderator /Lincs, E & S Yorks Deputy AEC
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Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 6:16 pm
Posts: 4144
Location: RetroModding™ since 1988
You can buy a half decent set of bike tools for ~£50, so a couple less visits to the LBS & it's paid for itself & there's the satisfaction of DIY

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... elID=40997


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 2:01 am 
Gold Trader / MacRetro rider
Gold Trader / MacRetro rider
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Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2007 12:23 am
Posts: 15608
I got a perfectly adequate full tool kit from lidl for about £25 a couple of years ago and they seem to sell one every 6mths or so, think aldi do one to, keep your eyes peeled best money I ever spent, plus lots of satisfaction.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 2:46 am 
Old School Hero

Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:28 pm
Posts: 173
Thanks for the quick replies.

At those prices there is no question. I had previously been looking at individual tools at £10 - £20+ each!

I usualy insist on only the best in tools. I do think though with my very infrequent need for major surgery there is room for a little comprimise on quality.

That X-Tool set from chain reaction looks good.

Is the Lidl/Aldi one realy up to the job? Would only need to use it a couple of times to be cost effective I suppose.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 5:16 pm 
Gold Trader / rb Rider / Special
Gold Trader / rb Rider / Special
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Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:26 am
Posts: 16165
Location: Rurally close.
i use ice-toolz x tools etc.
the cheaper ones on ebay, crc etc.
i find them fine to use and have never visited a bike store to do anything for me.
i build and strip bikes often so its good for me to have the tools too
my dad taught me the skill and hence have no real need to go to a bike store, you can read/watch it online.
i buy a tool every now and then when i find im using it more (if i dont have something i need, i borrow it from my dads bike club)
its great that the cheap tools are available!
get the tools i say, just buy what you need when you can and it soon builds up as will your knowledge!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 6:34 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Sat Jun 20, 2009 3:45 pm
Posts: 5261
Location: Birmingham
ice toolz user here also

got this kit

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Icetoolz-Essence- ... 19c08fad4d

all good enough, the pedal spanner didnt last but everything else has stood up fine, the bb remover is not great for stubborn bottom brackets but i do 99.9% with that kit, I dont touch modern suspension or bleed discs though, leave that still to the LBS, oh and dont leave it out in the rain, it rusts like bugger, cleans up fine though mine have a very nice patina. the hex keys are great too :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:09 pm 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider

Joined: Sat May 29, 2010 7:01 pm
Posts: 633
Location: Liverpool
I've stripped and rebuilt two bikes with a Lidl tool kit.

Including removing a bottom bracket from a 16 year old frame.


Crank extractor probably won't last too much longer, but the rest has been fine.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:23 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:07 pm
Posts: 4211
Location: London for my sin's
Get the tools you will use most often first e.g. chain whip and cassette lock ring remover or a chain wear checker. they will apy for themselves within a few months of purchase.

And while cheap tools are great don't scrimp on something that will see lot's of use or heavy welly. My shimano HG lockring remover is some 16 years old and still going strong despite loosing a tooth removing a particulaly tight lockring


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 1:33 am 
Dirt Disciple
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Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2010 4:16 pm
Posts: 98
Location: In the Ghetto Walthamstow
I would say to anyone get your own "half decent" basic tool set and start saving money and time..
I have built numerous bikes over the last ten years all modern stuff and have just recently started restoring more vintage steeds 1960's etc.. That normally means buying the odd tool for this and that but to me I would rather spend 10 quid on a tool and do it (or learn to do it) myself than spend 10 quid at the LBS..

Plus with a decent tool kit and a bit of understanding you can start making a bit of cash/Beers doing services and wheel builds for you mates :wink:, most workshops dont really inspire me to give them my bike for work anyway..

Tools I own range from Park tools,Pedros and Ice toolz I find cycle stuff fairly reasonable when you come from Motorcycle Snap on or Teng tools prices :shock:

Or just build your own 8)

Wheel truing stand

Image

Image

cost about 4p in wood off cuts & saved 40 quid first time I used it on a wheel build :lol: ..

Working with poor tools is a fcuker as more often than not you end up killing the part you wish to remove costing more in the long run, dont bother with all the fancy headset presses and BB taps either get just the tools for removing main components and dont be scared of top name used items either...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 6:54 am 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 2:44 pm
Posts: 2159
Location: Tamaris
Getting my own tools for any job is a requirement, as diy is far cheaper than paying someone else to stuff it up for you, I source off ebay, lidls, aldi and make some of the less sophisticated tools like chain whips and pedal spanners, which usually involves me raiding my mechanics tool box for a tool and grinding it to fit. With a bit of thought, some tools can be adapted from other tools, once got a cassette lockring off by beating a hardwood dowel into the hole and turning it with a screwed on wooden beam. Similarly cranks can be extracted by undoing the holding screw and prying the crank off whilst tapping the ally with a mallet, prying can be done with an open ended spanner around the back of the axle, stubborn cranks get a bit of heat from a blow torch. Now I just have self extracting bolts fitted requiring nothing more than an allen key to remove, much quicker and easier.


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