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Old 04-25-2013, 06:12 PM   #571
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Originally Posted by Conedodger View Post
Walmart will mount anything you bring in. Paid $65 last week for 4 mount and balance with old tire disposal. They even do my stiff side wall Hoosier race tires for the same price.
That's where I wound up.
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:39 PM   #572
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We have gone from funny shit that dealers tell customers to; "who and who doesn't think we are getting ass raped by shop labor rates?"

For you whinaholics......Learn to work on your own shit.....Problem solved!
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Old 04-25-2013, 08:09 PM   #573
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It's all really flat rate time. They just calculate it as shop rate X book hours. They do that because shop rate is different for every shop. Because every shop is in a different area with different cost.

A shop located in a higher class area, will have to pay their techs more, and have higher rent/ shop cost. So the cost of doing business is higher and the prices are higher. But it's that for everyone in the area and the customers expect it.

Now a shop in the ghetto will have cheaper rent, the techs will work for less and the customers will want to pay less.

It's the same oil change, but different rates.


Flat rate is easy on cars. You can look up any one of the number of online resources like All Data and On Demand and they will have a complete service manual and rate times for all the work.
Nothing like that exist for motorcycles/quads. So if you are not a Honda dealer, and a Honda pulls in that needs work, you have to guess at how long it will take.
We had a Chinese quad that needed work pull in a few days ago. No manual on that, so we estimated high side at $420, but the work took less time then we figured, so the total bill was $350. It seemed like the right thing to do.

Unlike most cars, bikes/quads are heavy customized, so a flat rate is just a guide. If the book says it will take 1 hour to do a job, but the customer has added many aftermarket parts that have to be removed before the work can start, then the cost will be higher. It's not fair to the tech that they will be paid for a 1hr job, when it will take them 2 hours to do.

The same can be said about charging a customer 1hr for a 30 minute job. But you can't be sure it will take 30 minutes it may take 2 hours do to rusty bolts. In the end, it evens out. You loose money on some jobs, and make it up on others.

A friend took his truck into the dealer for a new water pump and thermostat. He was charged full book time for the water pump, and full book time for a thermostat replacement. The thermostat is housed inside the water pump. That was very dishonest and I don't do crap like that.
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Old 04-26-2013, 06:09 AM   #574
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A friend took his truck into the dealer for a new water pump and thermostat. He was charged full book time for the water pump, and full book time for a thermostat replacement. The thermostat is housed inside the water pump. That was very dishonest and I don't do crap like that.
Yeah, that's bullshit. I'll bet somebody looked up water pump time, then thermostat time, then added them together instead of looking at the water pump plus thermostat. Also, if the thermostat is in the water pump, there should be no extra labor as tech has to either swap in the existing one or put in a new one. I'd go talk to the service manage about that one, and ask for a refund of half the labor. Your friend can look up the times online and show them to the manager.
A reasonable argument, well backed up, will get either A) a refund, or B) your friend never going back. Most dealers will give up a lot to retain customers, since it's much cheaper than recruiting new ones.
My boss gives us a lot of freedom to make judgement calls on the drive. His criteria is simple: Is the customer happy? Pass. Is the customer mad? Fail.


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Old 04-26-2013, 06:37 AM   #575
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I'm going to disagree. The owner of the store isn't the one that's setting a precedent. The customer is either respectful or isn't. If someone is up a creek and the owner keeps the doors open an extra hour to help out and I hear about it, I give that business as much of my business as I can because I know the owner (and staff) are good people. It doesn't mean though that I expect to come in after hours or late on a Saturday. It probably just means that the customer that was helped that day is going to order parts through them and consider their next bike purchase through them, not that they want to now take advantage of someone that forgot to lock the door. That's the kind of thing that makes customers come back (during normal business hours and look for things to buy).

Good on the owner and staff that was willing to help out a rider that needed a little extra help.
No, not "good on the owenr and the staff." The owner fucked the staff right in the ass. Hey, if the owner wants to pay the staff overtime to get a tire change done after hours, great. If the owner wants to do the tire change himself, great. But forcing the staff to stay an extra hour off the clock (off the clock?! Are you fucking kidding me!) so the owner can make a few bucks and suck up to a customer is a shit thing to do to the staff.
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Old 04-26-2013, 06:43 AM   #576
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No, not "good on the owenr and the staff." The owner fucked the staff right in the ass. Hey, if the owner wants to pay the staff overtime to get a tire change done after hours, great. If the owner wants to do the tire change himself, great. But forcing the staff to stay an extra hour off the clock (off the clock?! Are you fucking kidding me!) so the owner can make a few bucks and suck up to a customer is a shit thing to do to the staff.
I agree to a point. Ill work the occasional half hour to get something important done. I figure it pays off in the end by meaning that I keep my job. But if its a regular occurrence....no thanks. No job is worth working for free.
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Old 04-26-2013, 06:53 AM   #577
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I agree to a point. Ill work the occasional half hour to get something important done. I figure it pays off in the end by meaning that I keep my job. But if its a regular occurrence....no thanks. No job is worth working for free.
In this economy you gotta do what you gotta do. Nothing good about it though.

The techs will even the score though. They always do. The owner will be completely mystified when the occasional set of tires disappears out the back door. "How could they be stealing from me? I treat them so well. Just last week I bought them donuts after I made them work an hour off the clock on a Saturday. Ingrates!"
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:01 AM   #578
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Originally Posted by Jim Moore View Post
No, not "good on the owenr and the staff." The owner fucked the staff right in the ass. Hey, if the owner wants to pay the staff overtime to get a tire change done after hours, great. If the owner wants to do the tire change himself, great. But forcing the staff to stay an extra hour off the clock (off the clock?! Are you fucking kidding me!) so the owner can make a few bucks and suck up to a customer is a shit thing to do to the staff.
I've never known a shop owner that didn't try to make it up to good techs when he asked them to do something extra for a customer. After hour drinks, closing early on a Friday, BBQs, etc. But if you're right and all that's going on is he's fucking them in the ass, well I'd quit right away and look for something with less ass fucking.
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:38 AM   #579
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Originally Posted by acesandeights View Post
I've never known a shop owner that didn't try to make it up to good techs when he asked them to do something extra for a customer. After hour drinks, closing early on a Friday, BBQs, etc. But if you're right and all that's going on is he's fucking them in the ass, well I'd quit right away and look for something with less ass fucking.
Years ago when I was working straight commission (50-50) with a guarantee, the owner would pay me if one of his gimme jobs got involved and took a lot of time. Most were for his buddies, who he would sometimes tell to pay the mechanic what he had coming to him in cash. He was the most honest person I've ever worked for. If the shop wasn't busy, I was allowed to rebuild starters, generators and alternators for shelf stock and got paid for that.
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:43 AM   #580
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Back in the mid '90s I was touring around Europe on a 12 year-old Honda CB250RS that i had picked up for 500 about 3 years before in England. As I rode the 600 km Leper (Belgium) to Baden Baden (Germany) leg in one day on main roads the bike got quite "floaty".

"Rear wheel bearing", I reckoned, and quick investigation suggested the same. Not a major on straights, take it easy through corners..... get it sorted in Baden Baden.

At first I thought of removing the wheel off at the YHA Hostel I was staying at and taking it to the nearest motorcycle place to get fixed, but that was quite a hike away, so I rode there the next morning, and asked if they could help.

"No, no, you need to go to the Honda dealer."

I had seen it on the way in, so I made my way the several km to get there.

"Yes, we can do it," they said at the Honda shop, "but you'll have to wait a week, maybe two for parts for an old bike like that."

I wasn't impressed.... Not a big job, I could have done it myself with the right tools handy, but I just had the Honda issue tool kit. I toddled off and eventually found a proper little engineering workshop.

"No worries; get that wheel of and we'll get it sorted".

I took the wheel off, he punched out the bearings, and his wife took them to an engineering supplier to get a matching set. He popped them in, and i put the bike back together. In not much more than an hour I was on my way. at minimal cost.

The engineer and his wife were on the top of my Xmas gift list, When I got back home to NZ a few months later I sent them a nice greenstone pendant and a book, which they appreciated.
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Old 04-26-2013, 08:05 AM   #581
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Back in the mid '90s I was touring around Europe on a 12 year-old Honda CB250RS that i had picked up for 500 about 3 years before in England. .
Nice story, sorry to hear you paid five hundred quid for a nine year old Honda
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:29 AM   #582
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In this economy you gotta do what you gotta do. Nothing good about it though.

The techs will even the score though. They always do. The owner will be completely mystified when the occasional set of tires disappears out the back door. "How could they be stealing from me? I treat them so well. Just last week I bought them donuts after I made them work an hour off the clock on a Saturday. Ingrates!"
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.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:08 AM   #583
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... but if there's a good reason and the tech is getting paid for the work, why not?
Concur. But in that story the techs were off the clock.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:49 PM   #584
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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.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:11 PM   #585
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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.
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