Friday, 14 December 2012

Top Tips For Bike Spares

At Petra Cycles, we sell a lot of small spare parts and they are as you can imagine these are frustrating at times, either to identify or get hold of. 

Whilst we have a reputation around the world for these parts, they are not particularly profitable and certainly not something we consider a bread winner for us.  This leads to a number of problems and we are very open about how we work, let's look at a few issues and tips so you can get what you need and know what to expect.

First we will look at the common questions.

Why do you charge shipping on small Shimano Spares?
  • We have to pay someone to pack it, card fees, packaging, postage, etc  there is not enough money in the spare parts to even ship the order. Sometimes just a few pence, hence why most shops wont sell them.

Can you find ....?
  • Basically  if you can't find it on our site we can't find it either, new product releases mean we have update every few months, so you might be lucky with a new bike spare but not older ones. As a rule of thumb 5 years is the average stock life for spares and 7 years is the absolute max.

Will X work with Y?
  • This is a hard one, sometimes with Shimano Spares there is a crossover and these are listed on the Tech Doc page. That is the certain way, however on occasion you will find some parts can be used on other like, brake lever covers and derailleur parts. The difference may only be colour or branding.   You can't be sure before you buy, it is trial and error at times.  But the Tech Docs again will give you an image and size where applicable and you can then work out from there if it is going to work.  We don't make any  guarantees when we offer advice like this...

Why does it take a few days to source?
  • We are not a big company so we hold only popular bikes spares in stock. Other parts have to be ordered in and for this we depend on supply. Sometimes they are out of stock too and stock cycles average from 1 month to a maximum of 6 months. Sorry we just can't get them any faster. 

How do I find the part I need and can I install it myself. 

Can you help me sort out all the parts I need? 
  • This is a hard one for us, we are just a Local Bike Shop, we don't have a lot of resources and to be frank we just can't afford too. The time involved in solving problems is high and we get a lot of requests. We just ask that people use there Bike Technical Help section of the website, where we have resource of info for self help. We have just 3 people at Petra Cycles and they are very stretched and operate in a very tough market. Ultimately it is not cost effective for us to help everyone. But if you get really stuck we will do our best!
After all is said and done. if you can't find the spare part or you can only find some bits, or it is all a bit too much to deal with, it is often simpler and easier to upgrade the whole component especially with the more entry level bike components. 

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