Starting a New Shop?
Here's a brief overview of what to consider when planning for a new bike shop, as well as a downloadable PDF with a checklist of typical tools for a professional bicycle service center.
Things to Consider
Tools in the bicycle service department serve many purposes. Primarily, tools are obviously used to assemble new bikes and to service used bikes. A tool that saves time and effort is making you money. Tools and tool layout also can make an impression on potential customers, even if they are only purchasing a water bottle or some other accessory. When setting up a service area, take the time to consider how the customer would view the service area. Strive to make the service area be a part of the store that you and your employees are proud of showing off to the customer.
There are certain tools you may want to select simply to be known
as the best service department around. Some tools may be used only once
or twice a year. However, if a customer comes in for that particular
repair, and your shop has the right tool and can fix their problem, you
have a very satisfied customer. You purchased goodwill when you
purchased the tool.
There is not necessarily a fixed set of “essential” tools for a bicycle shop. Each store will need to address the needs of the customer by selecting the appropriate combinations of tools. Keep in mind that servicing the customer is the goal. It is not necessary to have every tool listed for the opening day of a store. It will take time learn who your customers are, and what types of service they want.
No tool can be expected to last forever. Expect some tools to fully depreciate within one year. Tools will wear out with time and use. The design of the component part often limits tool service. For example, a cone on a hub has a very narrow surface for a wrench. The torque’s and loads placed on cones by some mechanics and/or manufacturers is so high that a wrench may begin to wear. Assign tool inspection to one person in your store. Heavily-used tools such as spoke wrenches, hex wrenches, and cone wrenches should be inspected the first of each month. Replace worn tools.
Recommended Tool List
This list is written for a “full service” bicycle retailer, who will offer service to any potential customer, including complete overhauls of bicycle brands they do not carry. Typically, there will be someone employed in the role of service manager. The assumption is that the store has also made a commitment to stocking a full line of replacement parts.
It is likely that a professional bike shop will have several benches, but not every bench requires every possible tool. The list shows recommendations for a primary or “master” bench, as well as “secondary” benches, which are typically used for assembly work and some typical repairs and adjustments.
One option for a new store or location is the Park Tool Master Tool Kit. This tool kit contains all our shop level tools, including cutting tools, or is available as the Base Master Kit without cutting tools. See all of our kit options in the Tool Kits section. Otherwise, follow the link below for a full checklist of tools you may want to consider acquiring.
New Shop Recommended Tool List (PDF)
Park Tool products are sold to bicycle retailers through wholesale distributors. These distributors set their own policies regarding pricing and setting up retailer accounts. Additionally, some distributors carry a more complete line of our products than others do. These distributors will be able to provide you with pricing information.