BuildYourBicycle have released a DVD aimed at the growing number of people who choose to specify and build their own bicycle, rather than entrust the job to a bike shop. With 70-minutes of detailed instructions and diagrams, the DVD promises to talk you through the whole process, from choosing the components and buying the right tools, to carrying out the build.Each task in the process is given an “allen key” rating, much like the Parks manuals for cars, so that you know what you’re biting off before you start. The video format offers a big advantage over traditional books and pictures in that you can actually see the job being done before you attempt it yourself.
The DVD can be bought from the company website and will be delivered to the UK, Europe or the US in the correct format and without import taxes.
There is some ongoingÂ debate about this DVD, see more below…
Understandably the DVD causes some concerns to bike shops and there is already some lively discussion on the company’s facebook page. Comments from the owner, Alun Evans, such as “For every one ‘good’ bike shop, there are ten ‘bad’ ones”, and “many of the bad ones try to pull the wool over the customer’s eyes insisting on outrageous labour charges for simple tasks” are probably going to serve to increase the debate on this topic.
For people who decide to watch the DVD and build their own bike, there are a few hurdles you will have to overcome. The best way to do any job is with the right tools and a work stand, these are an expensive, although worthwhile, addition to your home workshop. Most bike shops will also make sure that your frame is properly faced and prepared before building it, something that requires specialised tools to do properly.Â Additionally things like how tight to do up each bolt and the best cable routing take a bit of practice to get right and can be expensive if done wrong.
Some bike shops will build your bike for free, and offer a decent discount on frame and parts if you buy from them. Other perks, like a discount for future purchases, free servicing and free demo bikes may be offered by some shops. It is customer service like that which will ultimately keep customers going to the bike shops to get their work done.
The other side of the coin is that, ultimately knowing how to do most jobs on your bicycle yourself is going to be a good thing. It gives you a better chance of being able to carry out a repair out on the trails and some jobs are so quick it is hardly worth visiting your bike shop for. Whether building an entire bicycle is the best way to start is up for discussion but if any BikeRumor viewers decide to give this a go then please drop us a line and let us know how you got on!