Missoula Registry Brings Bike Repair to Helena Alleys | Local
Hartman bought and outfitted a van with everything a bicycle mechanic needs. His wife helped him set up a website to take reservations.
Anyone from competition-level bikers to grocery shopping grannies can schedule a time and place for Hartman to do everything from minor repairs to full-fledged tune-ups.
“Some people don’t even see me. Most of the communication is done online,” he said.
A recent customer had eight bikes that needed tune-up. Hartman arrived at the client’s house in the morning. The client got to work and by the time he returned Hartman was gone.
Hartman bills by the hour, but said tune-ups generally start at around $ 45.
He said the mobile model has proven to be extremely convenient for him and his clients.
Hartman intended to open a physical repair shop, but the real estate market proved prohibitive.
“It’s a totally different model than what I expected to create, but there are a lot of things that I would like to continue doing,” he said, adding that he intended to eventually move towards a more hybrid company with warehouse space for storage.
Lifetime Bike Mechanic may not be available for next month. Hartman was invited to work as the chief mechanic for the Olympic Academy of the US cycling team. He will be heading to the East Coast at various times this fall for various races.