As an cycle mechanic apprentice you will help construct, repair, and service many types of bicycles. You’d talk to your customers about bike problems, discover the defects, and assess the required repairs.
Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:
- build a new bike to a customer’s specification
- identify problems with a bike
- estimate the cost of repairs and give quotes
- carry out a bike service and safety check
- carry out repairs, maintenance tasks and replace parts
- order bike parts and keep a log of stock
- take bookings for repairs and process paperwork
- liaise with suppliers and dealers
- attend cycling events to provide repairs and technical support.
- Starting salaries for an apprentice is £20,000 per year.
- Experienced cycle mechanics can earn up to £30,000 per year.
You will work 42 to 44 hours each week. Depending on your employer, you may be contracted to work Saturdays, Sundays, and possibly late hours. In addition, some companies may require you to work overtime.
In most cases, you will be working within a workshop. For example, if you work for a large bike store or retail chain, you will be part of a mechanical team. You could also work for an online bike business, working alone in a workshop, making new bikes for customers. The work is physically demanding, and you will be on your feet a lot. You must be aware of your health and safety since you will use various equipment and chemicals in this job, such as cleaning products and lubricants. Protective clothing, including overalls and eye protection, is usually provided.
Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice cycle mechanic include:
- Level 2 Bicycle Mechanic – Entry requirements for this level includesome GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship. This qualification will take 18 months to complete.
On a cycle mechanic apprenticeship, you’ll learn:
- the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- analytical thinking skills
- customer service skills
- the ability to sell products and services
- knowledge of engineering science and technology
- problem-solving skills
- the ability to work well with your hands
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device.
Career path and progression
With expertise, you may work for a large organisation such as British Cycling, which hires specialised mechanics for the British racing team.
You might move to the position of head mechanic after 3 to 5 years of experience.
You might even go into business for yourself and establish a mobile bike repair service or your own shop.
Cycling Experts has further information about running a bike business.
You may also educate other mechanics as an experienced and certified bike technician.