FAQs

Common Questions, Common and Uncommon Answers-

What are your hours?


Wednesday evening 4-7
Friday
late-afternoon 3-6
Saturday
mid-day 10-2


Mon-Sat: by appointment or call ahead

Winter Hours (Nov.1-Jan.31):
Saturday: 11am-2pm

closed February


Why are you hours so weird?

We have this idea that if we can concentrate at-the-shop interactions, it will allow for more interruption-free working time.  Not that you're an unwelcome distraction, but you know what I mean.  Outside of these hours we do appointments too, or call/email ahead.

I stopped by but it looked like no one was there, what's the deal?

In the summer, we often keep the outer garage door closed to keep the pavement heat out in the parking lot.  Likewise on cold days the door is often closed.  Usually we keep a bike or two outside when we are at the shop, but not always.  Give a good knock on the garage door or open it.

Do you sell bikes?

No.  We may get into consignment or used sales in the future, but not yet.
We are not a scooter or motorcycle dealer, we just fix 'em and we fix 'em good.

Do you want to buy my bike?

No.  We aren't in the buying and selling business yet.

How long have you been in business?

Since 2010.  This is our 4th season.

Where are you?

We are in the Lorraine Mill complex on Mineral Spring Avenue in Pawtucket, RI, just North of Providence.  The Mill complex is large and is on both sides of Mineral Spring Ave; we are on the South side.  Lorraine Fabrics is in the same Mill complex, across the street on the North side.  The street address is 560 Mineral Spring Avenue, which is about midway on Mineral Spring Ave between the Dunkin' Donuts at the Smithfield Ave (Rt. 126) intersection and the McDonald's and Hess gas station at the Lonsdale (Rt. 122) intersection.

Once you get to the Mill complex, the easiest way to find the shop is to go to the East side of the Mill complex (away from Lorraine Fabrics, they're on the West side), where there is a large downhill-sloping parking lot just before a set of train tracks.  If you pass the Save-A-Lot you've gone too far.  (If you're coming from the other direction, the parking lot will be to the left just after the Save-A-Lot and the train tracks.)  Turn into that parking lot, you'll be going downhill.  Keep going, towards the jungle of large steel outdoor sculptures, which is hard to miss at the end of the parking lot.  Loop around the steel sculptures and down the backside of the Mill, there will be another parking lot ahead, that's our lot, once you get there look for the garage doors to the right.  Hooray!  You made it!

Please see also the detail map on the Contact and Locate page.  Check your GPS or Google Maps for route info from the nearby I-95 exits.

Can you give me an estimate?

Sight unseen, we can only give you a general idea most of the time, if even that.  If you want anything more specific we need to see the bike.  If your bike does not run, we cannot give you an estimate. 

Do you have XYZ part?  How much is XYZ part?

Please don't call us about random parts, especially if you don't even know what bike you have or what the part is specifically.  Stop by during open shop hours with the original- we will need to match it up and make sure what we have in stock is what you need.  If we do not have it in stock, we will order it for you and we will need you to pay up front for the part prior to ordering it.
 
How much for an oil change?

Roughly $65 for a motorcycle, roughly $55 for scooters with oil filters and $45 for scooters without oil filters.  Roughly.

I have new tires, will you put them on my bike?

We will install supplied tires.  $40/tire for Mount & Balance, plus any Labor ($78/hr) required to get the wheel on & off the bike.  (If you let us supply the tires, it is only $30/tire and Labor is only $65/hr.)

I have a brand new scooter, how much is first service and what does it include?

First service involves a comprehensive exam to make sure everything is put together and functioning properly.  We provide you with a detailed write-up for your records and warranty.  Change of engine and gear oils, check the spark plug and air filter, check your cooling system (as applicable), braking systems, lights, locks, battery, charging system, check the torque on some things and give it a test ride to see if anything jumps out as noticeably 'off.'  Approximately $100-$130 for 1-1.5hrs labor and oils and filter.  2-stroke scooters are a little cheaper, usually under $100.

I am looking to buy my first scooter, do you have any advice?

Why yes, yes we do.  50cc scooters are the ones you can ride without getting a motorcycle drivers license.  If you've gotten your license, then you have lots more options for larger displacement and faster bikes.

For new scooter buyers, our most helpful information is: don't buy Chinese-origin scooters (the Keeway brand may be an exception), buy one of reasonable and safe quality.  Lots of people think they're getting a good deal because the scooter is cheap, but in the case of these scooters, cheap is Cheap.  They are most commonly identifiable by the quality of the plastics and a model name something along the lines of LBQ50-T.  If you can't google the brand and find reputable dealers, stay away.  Why?  They break.  The quality is too low.  They are often unsafe.  You will spend more fixing them then you will buying them.  There is no parts supply chain, no in-depth service information, no company standing behind the brand.

Next helpful pointer: 2T vs. 4T (i.e., 2-stroke vs. 4-stroke) engine.  2-stroke engines are a little less environmentally friendly but give you some considerable more spunk and power than a 4-stroke.  You have to put 2T oil in a tank beside the gas tank, the scooter does the work of mixing them together (if you're buying a used bike, sometimes 2-strokes require premixing of oil and gas into one tank).  4-strokes are quieter, ultimately longer lasting, more eco-friendly, but you do get a little less pep.  Larger than 50cc displacement scooters are almost all 4-strokes.

Brands to consider: Vespa, Honda, Yamaha, Genuine, Kymco, Sym, Aprilia, Piaggio, Suzuki, possibly Keeway.  There's a range of prices and quality between the brands, but generally speaking, you can't go wrong with any of them.  Local dealers are Razee's in N.Kingston, Dexter Auto in Warwick, Vespa Newport, Scooter Centrale in Hartford, CT, plus places in Boston.  If you're going used, hit the craigslist, and if you want to forward us a link or two, we can let you know if we see any red flags or not on the listing.  Since we're missing out on the opportunity to sell you your bike, I hope you will come to us for its service.  You will get the best of care.

Uh-oh, I have a Chinese-origin scooter and I just read your response to the FAQ above.  What do I do?


If you know what you have and what you are dealing with, some people do fine with owning these scooters.  But if you have any expectations about the bike being good, it would be best to reconsider.  If you are looking for a short-term transportation solution or for a toy, you may do alright with one of these scooters (ignoring safety issues).  But if you are looking for a reliable vehicle or for a vehicle worth investing in, sell it and get something else.  We have a fairly high success rate with keeping these scooters operational, but the real costs for repair sometimes just don't make sense and can too easily exceed the value of the vehicle.

Is my bike ready yet?

We contact you when your bike is ready to go.  Our preference is for email, we will send you a pdf of your repair order so you can see the work done and the total cost before stopping by the shop to pickup your bike or receive it delivered.  If you're not into email, then we call you.  Calling us to ask if your bike is done does not help it get done any faster. 

Do you do State Inspections?

No.  This is something we will be working on for next season.  For the time being we are able to help connect you with a nearby Inspection Station.

You guys are busy, is it just the two of you?

No.  We are building a small army of awesome mechanics.

What is turnaround time like?

We work continually to improve turnaround time and provide the fastest service as we are able.  As a small shop it can take a few days to order in specialized and OEM parts, but standard service items are regularly kept in stock and most general services we are able to turn around within a day or twoWe do our best to keep on top of the many complicated and unique projects we have going at any given time.  Stop by the shop sometime, you'll see what we're talking about, it's not all quick oil- and tire-changes, that's for sure.  A general rule of thumb is one week in the shop for every year a bike has been sitting unused.



More FAQs are in the works.  If you have a question not listed, email us!