Assembling a mountain bike can take about 25 minutes for a professional. A first time assembly or a beginner can expect to take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour.
Generally speaking, most modern mountain bikes will come partially assembled. You will often have to do nothing more than attach the wheels, handlebars, and the seat.
Although most of the difficult assembly has been done, it will still take a total beginner more time to assemble the bike than somebody that has done it before.
How Much Do Bike Shops Charge to Assemble a Bike?
You can expect most bike shops to charge around $100 for them to assemble the bike.
However, you need to remember that they are doing so much more than just assembling the bike for you. They will also be tuning it up. This means that it will be ready to ride right out of the shop.
If you are buying a mountain bike from a shop, it is unlikely that they will be able to put it together right away for you. Most will take a couple of hours. Some may even take a few days. This isn’t because they are slow at putting together bikes, it is just that they have a lot of them to do!
If you are buying a bike on the more expensive side of things, then it is highly recommended that you pay the extra cash to have it put together properly. This way you can be sure that it is going to be done right.
Can You Build Your Own Mountain Bike?
You absolutely can assemble your own mountain bike!
For the most part, it isn’t that difficult. If you know how to use a screwdriver, then you will probably be capable of putting together a bike. As we said, most of them are going to be partially preassembled, so it is just a case of screwing a few pieces into place, and then you are done.
Is It Hard to Assemble a Mountain Bike?
Assembling a mountain bike yourself is certainly doable with a little bit of reading and elbow grease.
Even the cheapest mountain bikes on the market will come equipped with some decent instructions that will tell you what you need to do.
If you are new to mountain biking, this mountain bike by Roadmaster comes partially assembled. The only assembly work you would have to do is put on the tires, handlebars, seat, reflectors, and peddles. All of the difficult to assemble pieces like the gears and brakes are already put together.
Most modern mountain bikes will even come with all the tools that you need to put together a bike. If they don’t, then you will probably have the tools that you need already. This includes:
- Hex keys
The real difficulty, to be honest with you, isn’t so much putting together the mountain bike. That part is dreadfully easy. It is the tuning up of the mountain bike afterward.
Very rarely will a mountain bike be ready to ride once it has been assembled. You will need to adjust the seat, brakes, and even the pedals. This is often why we suggest that you use an expert to put together that mountain bike. They will be able to adjust it to your needs and, once again, they are going to make sure that it is right.
So, you can put together your own mountain bike. It is dreadfully easy. It is just that if you do not have that much in the way of experience when it comes to assembling mountain bikes, it won’t be that fun to ride. In fact, it can be a chore if you have the seat, brakes, or pedals connected up in the wrong way.
Is It Cheaper to Assemble Your Own Bike?
You will be saving $100-$150 if you assemble your own bike. However, we wouldn’t necessarily say that it is cheaper to assemble your own bike.
This is because incorrectly assembled mountain bikes are prone to falling apart prematurely. Certain parts may not be screwed together properly. As we already said, these bikes are probably going to be a lot less comfortable for you to ride.
Bikes that are falling apart tend not to last as long. This means that if you have your bike professionally put together, then you won’t be forever maintaining it and spending money on spare parts. So, while you may be spending a bit more money in the short term, we reckon that you will be saving a lot more money in the long term.
This applies even if you buy a cheaper mountain bike. It is still worth paying that fee to have it put together by a professional because it does mean that you are going to end up with something that functions a little bit better and lasts a whole lot longer.
How Many People Does It Take to Put Together a Mountain Bike?
You only really need one person to put together a mountain bike. However, we find that the job becomes a lot easier if you have a couple of people working on it. This is because there will be times where the bike will need to be supported. So, rather than just resting it on your body as you screw things into place, it would be handy to have another person supporting it for you. It will make the job go a whole lot quicker!
What Will Need to Be Adjusted Once the Mountain Bike Has Been Fully Assembled?
Putting together the bicycle is only going to have half of the battle. If you just follow the instructions for putting together a mountain bike, then chances are that it isn’t going to end up being suitable for you.
The key to having fun on a mountain bike and actually being able to tackle terrain is to ensure that you have the seat and the handlebars at the right height. If they aren’t, then you will often be putting in too much effort to cycle. This means that you won’t be able to get as far, and you will be spending a whole lot more energy.
If you are finding it difficult to ride your current mountain bike, then chances are it is because the seat or the handlebars are in the wrong place. Even then, it isn’t really something that you can just set up and leave.
You will need to periodically adjust everything because as you go over the bumps on the ground and travel at speed, everything is going to be knocked loose. This is why it is suggested that you bring along a set of bike tools on every trip.
You can follow these instructions to ensure that everything is going to be adjusted properly for you:
Adjusting the Height of the Seat
This will likely be a two person job. It means that somebody will be able to support the bike while somebody has the seat adjusted to their height.
When you are sitting on the bike, the height of the seat should be enough that you can stretch your legs out without a bend. However, it shouldn’t be so high that you will be stretching to the point where you can barely each the pedals.
To adjust the height of the seat while assembling your mountain bike, put everything together like normal. Now, sit on the bike. You will want to pedal backward so your feet are in a 6 o’clock position.
In this position, there should be no bend in the knee for your lower leg. However, it shouldn’t feel like you are stretching to be seated in this position.
You can adjust your seat up or down depending on what your needs are i.e. if your legs are bent, then you will need to adjust the seat up a little bit. If your legs feel like they are stretching too far, then you will need to lower the seat a little bit.
You should try and make small adjustments to begin with. This way you can be sure that you are getting the perfect height as quickly as possible.
Adjusting the Handlebar Height
Once you have the seat correctly adjusted, you will be able to adjust the handlebar height. Once again, this should be something that is dreadfully easy to do. You just have to get it to the perfect height for you.
Sadly, we cannot give you that much advice on handlebar height. This is because it will be dependent on the person. Again, this is why you should be working with a professional to help you to tune the bike.
An ideal handlebar height will allow you to adjust your body to the point where your weight is spread evenly over both wheels. You shouldn’t be overly hunched forward.
It shouldn’t take too long to put together a mountain bike, particularly a modern one. If you know what you are doing and are quite handy with a set of tools, then it should probably take you under 30-minutes.
If you haven’t put together something before, then it should still take under an hour, or you can have it assembled at a bike shop for a marginal fee.
We recommend that you find a professional that can help put the bike together for you if you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself. It will save you a lot of headaches!