#mechanicmonday honors Dave McInnis
After a quick break for Memorial Day in the US, we are back with a new (and international!) Mechanic Monday feature! This week’s honoree is Dave McInnis of North Vancouver, BC, Canada!
For those of you who are unfamiliar with PBMA’s Mechanic Monday series, this is where we feature one mechanic each week who is chosen randomly from the pool of nominations that we receive. Mechanic Monday is all about mechanics supporting fellow mechanics, and we are proud to partner with Abbey Bike Tools, Cycling Industry News, and People for Bikes to share these great features with you.
Dave McInnis is a veteran cyclist and mechanic, who moved to the North Vancouver area 10+ years ago in search of a better mountain biking scene. As it turned out, he found all that and more! Dave worked as a race mechanic for some of BC’s top pros and spent time as an instructor at The Bike Room, before opening his own shop, BicycleHub. He was the Sole Owner/Operator of BicycleHub for five years, before hiring his first mechanic last summer. Since moving to the area, and even after opening his own shop, Dave has made it a priority to “give back” by donating countless hours of his time to the Scouts and other community groups, to share his love of cycling and the outdoors with today’s youth.
With all of the outstanding and impactful work that Dave does for his community, we were honored to catch-up with him to learn more about his endeavors in the world of cycling. Here is some of what he had to say, in his own words!
PBMA: Do you have a favorite moment or story from your time in the cycling industry?
DM: This one is super tough!!!! I have been so blessed to have so many incredible stories and adventures because of riding and wrenching! There a few layers to this question. Getting to race, and ride as much as I have with friends and athletes I love and respect is the most amazing thing for me. I guess my shop’s opening party would be up there – an incredibly fun night with some fantastic riders and friends and the culmination of a dream for me. I do what I do because I love helping people enjoy their bikes. I've had some really incredible moments when I first saw pros [racing] on bikes I built for them, riding rampage, doing film shoots, etc. The feeling of being trusted with that is pretty incredible. But the same goes for when I see pictures of my customers on social media enjoying a riding adventure that I helped get them ready for, or when folks email me to tell me how much they've loved their bike. The first time [I saw] one of my BicycleHub stickers on a car I didn't recognize will always be up there for me as well – that feeling of "wow, someone who isn't family or friends loves what I do enough to put my sticker on their car!!!!"
PBMA: What motivation or advice would you give to an aspiring professional bicycle mechanic?
DM: I would simply tell them to believe in themselves and take the time to learn how to do things the correct way. Once you have the basics dialed, you then have the freedom to problem-solve and be the best mechanic you can be – sometimes in unconventional ways. As a small business owner, as well as a rider and mechanic, I would say the biggest hurdle for me was giving myself permission to find my own path to success – to find my own balance between all the myriad tasks that make up running a small business with the need to be outside and recreating, and to push myself as a rider even when people will tell you to take it easy. "What if you get hurt, don't you have a business to run?" is a common refrain, and it’s a valid question But if I'm not pushing myself, I'm not happy anyway, so I needed to learn that.
You will make mistakes, you'll disappoint people, and you'll feel horrible at your job. That part is inevitable. The rewards are worth it. To own my own mistakes and hiccups along the way was a hugely valuable process and one that I learned a ton from, both professionally and personally.
PBMA: What is your favorite tool?
DM: Favorite tool is another tough one! I believe that good tools are so worth the cost, so my box is filled with lots of Snap-On and other good stuff. Solid Allen keys are always a must, good sockets and ratchets…
But if I had to pick just one, I would probably pick my Kowa Spoke Cutter. I love building wheels, and the ability to just carry blanks and cut spokes to whatever length needed ensures that I can always build wheels to the highest standards. But for smaller tools, I would say my Knipex Adjustable Wrenches take the cake!
That’s all for this week! Thank you for following along with our series and sharing our support for our fellow mechanics. We’ll be back next week with a new feature. In the meantime, we are still in need of nominations!! You don’t need to be a PBMA Member to nominate or be featured! (All that we ask is for no self-nominations, please.) Click here to learn more about our 2018 Mechanic Monday series, and here to learn more about how to nominate your favorite mechanic!
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