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Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by ak_diane, Aug 16, 2012.
Nice story, sorry to hear you paid five hundred quid for a nine year old Honda
According to previous posters, the techs will be getting paid for the work, and effectively getting overtime if they can do an hour's work in 30 miutes. Comes down to work ethic I suppose - There are always extenuating circumstances either way but generally, what's good for the business is good for the employees. Now no tech should be expected to miss a family event because of an inconsiderate customer but if there's a good reason and the tech is getting paid for the work, why not? If techs are allowed to clock in late or take a long lunch break sometimes, as long as their work is getting done, then I think it's reasonable to expect them to stay late some times. OTOH, if they are expected to always be there at 08:00 on the dot and take no more than 30 mins (or whatever) for lunch, then at 4:30, they should have their toolbox locked and be out the door, every time.
Concur. But in that story the techs were off the clock.
I pick up my tyres from a guy who races, and imports tyres for street bikes and sells them really cheap.
He said he doesn't open till 6:30pm closes at 1030pm. business on the side one night a week.
I finish work at 4pm and had nothing better to do, so I rode out to the shop, pulled the rim off, gave it a clean and was about to get my books out and study in the sun for the next hour and a half. I had food and a drink and was happy as.
I sat down, the owner walks up and says "I'll get your tyre done now if you like" I asked if he is opening earlier now, he said nope, you are out front, wheel off and look like you are in a hurry. I explained my food, drink and study time I had planned, and how having everything clean and ready would make his life easier
Oh, well, come in and I'll do it now so you can get home and study in comfort.
I gave him $20 extra and have purchased my tyres, brake pads, cleaning products and lube from there since. Great guy that one.
Had another store tell me the tyre I had fitted for $180 couldn't be purchased for less than $260 fitted, plus $5 for disposal of old tyres. I rang them back and told them the price I paid and the guy said "shit, no way we can beat that. Keep going to that guy hey" and laughed.
Here is the secret to wholesale tires. The more you buy, the cheaper they get. It does not matter brand or style. For the big shops/mega malls/online stores who buy tires by the semi-load, the discount they get is huge. So much so, that their retail price is less then the wholesale price a small shop would pay.
So it's not that the small shop is overpriced on tires, they just can't get them for the same wholesale price as the big guys.
The same goes for OEM and aftermarket parts, but not to the same extreme.
£500 was fair value from a small motorcycle shop/dealer at the time. I got them shop to put a new rear tyre on it, and do a couple of other things, so it was ready to use without any further work...... so a good dealer story there.
Bought privately it might have been £350 - 400, and could well have needed a bit of work done on it.
The guy who owned it before me, from new, turned up at the pub where I used to live for part of the year. He had kept up the routine maintenance, but had not bothered with the cosmetics, much the same as me with bikes I have owned. He replaced it with a CB500.
I had the CB250RS for about five years. In addition to a couple of trips to Europe I covered much of Great Britain and Ireland on it. A few months after my last trip to Europe, it was stolen. I got a £300 payout from the insurance company.
As has been pointed out, the times are the averages and typically very accurate, requiring the tech to work pretty efficiently to get the job done in time. It also serves to simplify things for the counter guys, techs, and customers. When someone calls and asks how much for a rear tire change, it could vary from 2-3 times between a rear dirt bike tire and a rear tire on a shaft drive cruiser that has to have the saddle bags and exhaust removed.
Secondly, wouldn't you rather have a guy that is experienced with your model of bike work on it, and has done the same repair several times before, than the guy who just got out of school and might have never touched your unique bike before? It will take the experienced guy 1.5 hours or the newb 3 hours, do you really want to pay by the actual time?
Finally, there are a lot of other tasks that techs have to do that are not paid for. Opening up the shop in the morning, moving bikes out so you have room to work, loading bikes onto the lift, putting tools away, wiping bikes down, test riding them, etc all eat up time where they are not making a dime.
Most good shops want to keep their customers happy for the long term rather than making a few more dollars here and now. Because of this, they will typically adjust book times if they are typically too high, or throw in small additional jobs for free, such as bleeding your rear brake if you come in for fork seals and an oil change.
Most good shops & successful dealerships, this.
The place I always get my tires changed adjust the chain, clean and lube it, inspect brake pads and just the smaller maintenance stuff. I like it... granted they did adjust the chain too much the last time, so much so that with sitting on the bike it had probably 1/4" of slack but when I showed them that they confessed they let the new tech adjust the chain and forgot to double check it.
They fixed it right away though which was nice, minus the ~30 minute wait time on top of the hour I was already there when they knew I needed to head out as soon as possible.
The trouble with that argument though is when you walk in and ask about a part (tire in this case..), they don't have it in stock but offer to order it for you at a much higher cost than you can order it yourself. If their vendors are raping them that bad why don't they switch vendors?
IIRC, Parts Unlimited has the moto market mostly locked down in the US. It's no so much the vendor as the wholesaler.
Maybe someone in the industry can chime in?
Or order from the same place you would plus a 10% handling/convenience fee
Parts Unlimited, Tucker Rocky, and Western Power Sports are the big three.
They are mostly distributors, but some have house brands.
If you want a Perelli tire, you can't order it direct from Perelli. You have to go through a distributor. Perelli does not do retail or wholesale. They only sell in bulk, to distributors.
The same exact thing happens in food service. Meatloaf inc makes a meatloaf, sells it to a distribution company like Cysco, who then sells it to OutBack StakeHouse. The average sit down restaurant has about 400 items in inventory. Even if you had to order from only 20 venders, it would be a daily nightmare without a distribution company handling it.
A 10% markup on the tire would not cover the cost associated with ordering the tire, shipping, inventorying it, and storing it on the shelf. It's loosing money on every tire. A 30% markup is about the minimum needed to cover cost. Some brand tires and items have more of a profit in them then others.
Same goes for food service, only its worse. The drinks are about the only items with a healthy profit in them. Kids meals are often sold at or less then cost in the hope that the parents are ordering something too.
Give up! I've tried this line of reasoning before - Apparently dealers are unable to buy things from the lowest priced source but have to pay through the nose and simply pass the extra cost on to the customer - At least that's my summary of the convoluted explanation given to me.
I've had dealers beat internet prices before.
Wouldn't this be a great reason to mount and balance customer-supplied tires? Seems like win-win.
So have I - but I've also had self-proclaimed dealers or ex-dealers on this forum tell me I didn't know what I was talking about when I suggested that a dealer can buy the same tires as me from the same place (if necessary) for the same price or less.
Many places will match online prices, if they can.
You didn't read my post. A dealer makes no profit, in fact looses money, paying retail prices buying tires from Bike Bandit, then reselling them to you at near the same price.
No, you didn't read my post! People on here have explained the higher price from dealers as being because the dealers basic cost to buy tires is higher - and I, along with many others, have called bullshit on this.
I understand why tires the dealer has held in stock would be quite a bit higher because of the handling, storage and tied up capital they represent, which translates to convenience for me. I also fully understand why, as a customer, I might have to pay a little more for tires I special order from the dealer - but that small ammount of handling and the time on the phone to place the order does not translate to an extra $100 (sometimes more) per tire. Besides, if the dealer is pricing their labour properly, they are also making a profit from fitting tires. If they can't figure out how to make money there either then I guess they are doomed.
Some dealers are proud. They won't mount someone else's tires. They also think if you got such a good deal online instead of coming to their store, you can piss off and try to find a good online deal mounting the tires. They think next time you won't try to find such a great online price since it's a bitch to find someone to mount them that you'll come to their store and buy tires.
Seems to me there is a huge market for dealers that treat customers well. In this thread it seems customers are saying they'll do repeat business with dealers that go the extra mile and then dealers saying they get burned so often they won't go the extra mile anymore. My opinion is if a dealer doesn't differentiate themselves somehow the customer is going to start buying online (more) and just going to the nearest dealer when they need something. If the dealer isn't willing to put up with a little extra from time to time, there is no reason to go to their dealership than the next guy's. Every time I read a post from a dealer that says they won't do something I have to wonder what they will do that the next dealer won't. You don't get business by providing the same or less than the next guy. You get it by providing something people want that the next guy won't provide.