Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Bike Shop Days - Part 3

Old stuff can be very cool stuffImage from: http://www.technical-illustrations.co.uk/

Another admirable characteristic of Discovery/Big Wheel was their appreciation of older bikes and parts. Few shops these days carry a stock of cotter pins.

Mike had a kick ass Raleigh Gent's bike with a sturmey 3 speed that was twice my age, but rolled like butter.

C has a fleet of vintage BMX cruisers and pre-suspension mountain bikes.

They taught me that newer and more technological is not always better.

I learned to loved the precision, simplicity, and near indestructibility of trusty down tube and thumb shifters. I learned how and why "steel is real". I know which parts were made during the "golden years" of this or that company. Most importantly, I was taught about marketing and engineered obsolescence in the industry.

It was cool getting to see the technological steps and innovations in components/frames that tried and failed along the way.

Even cooler was the amount of bikes we helped recycle and put back on the road. It can happen where a shop will try and talk a customer into simply buying a new bike rather than fixing an old one.

At our shop, we had such a weird and big inventory of new old stock and old used parts, that it was rare that we couldn't fix a bike. This helped people stay on a bike that they may really care about. People get attached to bikes, we tried to keep bikes rolling and out of the dumpster. The different types of brakes, derailleurs, cranks, bottom brackets and shifters Ive dealt with in my years there is awesome.

And now to the music section:

Sundays were fun days. The shop opened at a Saturday night friendly 12pm, and almost half of the day was spent jamming to Jamaican Gold (Koop 91.7 - 12-2pm).

This isn't a Marley show, actually Bob is rarely heard on the program. It is a mix of roots, rock steady, dub and others.

It suffices to say that the dude's record collection is deep and rare.

Some favs:

Ya Mon!!!

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