Mechanic Classes FAQ
Below are the most common pre-class questions students have asked about our mechanics classes. If you have any additional questions, please contact us at any time.
1. Are there prerequisites for any of the mechanics classes?
- The Introduction to Bicycle Maintenance and Professional Repair and Shop Operation classes do not have any prerequisites. Students enrolling in the Advanced Certification Seminar Week must have successfully completed a professional-level bicycle mechanics course, or have worked as a bicycle mechanic in a shop for a minimum of one year.
2. Should I take Introduction to Bicycle Maintenance before enrolling in the Professional Repair and Shop Operation class?
- We don’t require that students take the Introduction class before the Professional Repair class. However, we find that students do better in the Professional Repair class if they already have at least some basic experience as home mechanics. If you don't have some basic bicycle mechanics skills, or if you're not confident in your skills, you will definitely benefit from taking the Introduction class first.
3. What about class size and student/teacher ratio?
- UBI has experienced mechanics instructional staff and one of the best student/teacher ratios in the industry. We limit the class size to 16 students in the Introduction and Professional classes, and 14 in the Advanced Certification Seminar week. Our student/teacher ratio in the Introduction and Professional classes is typically 5/1, and in the Advanced Seminars is 4/1.
4. What is a typical class day?
- The school opens at 7:45 am and class meets from 8 am to 5 pm Monday through Friday. There will be several short breaks during the morning and afternoon. The lunch break is one hour long, give or take a few minutes, and begins between noon and 12:30 pm. On the final day of class we try to conclude by 4:00 pm to accommodate travel schedules. Tuesdays and Thursdays the classroom shop facility is open until 7 pm for an open work session.
5. Do I need to bring any books or other materials to class?
- We provide all manuals and study materials for our mechanics classes, and the cost is included with your tuition, so there are no additional materials you need to purchase before attending UBI, and no hidden costs. We suggest that bring anything that helps you with note-taking such as sticky notes or highlighter pens. You are welcome to audio record lectures, provided the recording device does not interfere with the orderly conduct of class.
6. How should I dress for class?
- You will be working in a shop environment, so dress in comfortable work or casual clothes, and wear sensible shoes. No open-toed shoes are allowed in the classroom. UBI will provide shop aprons, gloves and protective eyewear when needed.
7. When can I work on my own bike?
- If you are enrolled in our Introduction to Bicycle Maintenance course, we encourage you to bring your own bike, and you may work on it during class hands-on sessions in addition to our evening sessions.
- Students in our Professional Repair and Shop Operation and Advanced Mechanics courses are not permitted to work on their own bikes during class. You must work on bikes and sub-assemblies provided by UBI. No personal bikes are permitted in the classroom during class hours in the Professional Repair and Advanced Mechanics courses.
- Students in all mechanics classes may work on their own bikes in the UBI shop during our optional evening sessions, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 pm to 7 pm. There is no additional charge for these evening sessions, and a UBI instructor will be on hand to assist.
8. Can I ship my bike to UBI?
- Most students find it more cost-effective to ship their bikes to UBI via UPS or FedEx ground or using a service like BikeFlights rather than checking it on their flights. Send it to yourself c/o UBI at our street address, 401 Williamson Way, Ashland, OR 97520. If your bike arrives before you do, we’ll keep it safely locked up until your arrival. UBI is closed on weekends, so if your bike has arrived before you have, it will not be accessible until the first Monday of class.
9. What type of bicycle should I bring?
- Ashland has superb mountain and road biking, so it's difficult to decide. In general, the single track trails above Ashland get some snow by mid-December, although there are several lower-elevation trails that are open even in cold weather. Ashland has great road riding year-round, however.
10. Tell me about the tool discount.
- For every class you complete at UBI, you are entitled to one order at near wholesale prices from United Bicycle Supply. Your purchase may be made anytime before one year from the last day of class. Some restrictions apply. You will be given a complete Tool Discount Sales Policy handout before you complete your class.
11. Do I receive a certificate upon completion of the class?
- Yes. All students who successfully complete any of our classes receive a Certificate of Completion. Students enrolled in the Professional Repair and Shop Operation and Advanced Certification courses will receive additional technical certifications if they pass the required tests in those courses.
12. Can I get a job after completing this training?
- Many graduates have gone on to become successful shop and race mechanics, or have acquired jobs with large bike companies. For example, UBI graduates are now working at Trek, Specialized, Mavic, Felt, FSA, Moots, Seven Cycles, Shimano, Fuji, Bike Friday, Raleigh USA, Quality Bicycle Products, Industry Nine, Chris King, Sea Otter, and many other companies. We regularly receive requests from shops, distributors, and manufacturers looking for our graduates and we maintain an extensive job listing page on our website.