[TheThinkTank] selling bikes

Kyle McKinley cariadkyle at hotmail.com
Thu Oct 18 18:04:18 PDT 2007

I actually can't remember if I've answered this question before...
Here goes:
At the Bike Church in Santa Cruz, bikes are sold either 'as is' (no 
wrenching done, although it is important to remember that we all spend a lot 
of time and intellectual labor GETTING the bike onto a hook in the shop) or 
as a mechanic's pet project. 'As is' bikes are typically priced between 
$15-$75 depending on all of the concerns that everyone else is posting to 
the list, and how much work needs to be done to make it safe and efficient. 
Desireability also plays a role in pricing. Bikes that mechanics (core/staff 
members) work over are priced by deducting the WHOLESALE price of new parts 
put on the bike, and then splitting the remainder between the mechanic and 
the shop. Thus, if a bike sells for $150, and there are $50 of new parts on 
it, the mechanic would take $50 and the shop would take $50. The mechanic 
sets the asking price based on the amount of labor put in and the 
desirability factors mentioned above. True, such systems do result in some 
cherrypicking, so a bike has to be kicking around 'as is' for a month before 
a mechanic can take it on, and, honestly, NOONE is ever gonna get rich 
fixing up busted bikes in the middle of the night, no matter how sweet the 
frame is.

At BICAS, where I am about to rush off to a collective meeting for, things 
are slightly different. the 'as-is' bikes are called 'pergatory; bikes in 
waiting' (which I just love) and though the factors for pricing are pretty 
similar the prices tend to be a bit lower here than in Santa Cruz (the 
bikes, overall, are a bit more toward the huffy side though; in Santa Cruz 
we turn those back at the gate, no room, no desire to haul other peoples 
metal recycling, whereas BICAS has a lot more room and need for all types 
of, uh, 'bikes'). At BICAS the 'floor bikes' (those that a mechanic has gone 
over) include in the price the RETAIL value of new parts, the 'as-is' value 
of the bike, and a designation for labor. The labor part is a little unclear 
policy-wise, as the mechanic approximates the amount of labor that went into 
the bike, but is paid as an an employee (each staff member is allocated 4hrs 
of paid work/week to wrench on floor bikes, and if it is slow in the shop 
staff can work on them then too). This is the main difference from the Bike 
Church, where all of the core mechanics are independent contractors 
(convenient for income taxes as well as being the actual truth of how tasks 
are accomplished).
Sorry that was kinda lenghty; I hope it is helpful.
ride prone but ride proud,

>From: "Liza Mattana" <pedals2people at gmail.com>
>Reply-To: The Think Tank <thethinktank at lists.bikecollectives.org>
>To: "The Think Tank" <thethinktank at lists.bikecollectives.org>
>Subject: [TheThinkTank] selling bikes
>Date: Thu, 18 Oct 2007 07:43:13 -0700
>if this has been answered before, can you link me to the archive thread?
>    my questions is how does your org price used bikes? we've come across
>    some nice older bikes (bridgestone CB-0 and an old stumpjumper), and
>    we're trying to figure out a way to price them, kind of a way to
>    standardize the process.
>    we'll be turning them into commuter bikes with fenders and racks and
>    making them safe and rideable, but we're not doing complete overhauls. 
>    know this is a tricky question, but any advice you have will be
>    helpful!
>    thanks,
>    liza
>Liza Mattana
>Spokane, WA
>Thethinktank mailing list
>Thethinktank at lists.bikecollectives.org

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