NYC Bikers

Life is meant to be lived on the back of a bike. At least the fun parts. This blog is an effort on my part to convert the world into bikers, starting with my friends living here in Fresh Meadows! Even if I have to do it single handedly, I will civilize the bikers of New York!

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Continuing Saga of Bro Bro and His Bicycle

An emergency phone call was placed on Saturday afternoon by Bro Bro to E. He found the perfect bike (rides great, 3 speed, comfortable, full covered chain case, rear fender and rack) for $75 at the local flea market- you couldn't go wrong. Until you realized it had no FRONT fender. I told him to pass but he wanted that bike. I said dude - pass.

The way I see it if that bike doesn't have a front fender that bike is no better then the $25 derailleur equipped 10 speed you can find on Craigslist any day of the week. Sure Bro Bro won't get grease on his pants and sure he can carry a girl or groceries on the back rack, but let us face reality - the first time he goes over a puddle too fast he will rue the day he purchased that bike. Why you ask? Because he will be covered in stagnant city water or mud or worse, DOG POO! And why will Bro Bro be covered in dog poo? Because he choose to ride without a front mud guard.

Thankfully for my blog, this saga continues. I did find what is being advertised as a $100 dollar dutch style bike. Here is a link - http://times-up.org/index.php?page=bike-co-op#TimesUpBikeRecyclingProgram. It is a single speed with a coaster brake but for a $100 it seems perfect as a beater bike. Me and Bro Bro might head out to check this place out on Wednesday. I will try to post some pics and add some links if we actually go.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Hunt for Bro Bro's Bike.

In an effort to move Bro Bro into more civilized transportation methods I have been enlisted to find him a bike. Of course, not just any bike – he wants a fully loaded and functional commuter bike for $150 or under. He wants a fully encased chain, fenders front and back, a carrying rack in the back, and a comfortable riding position.

Considering we live in the US and not in Holland or Belgium, his requests are not going to be easy to make come true. Not many bike shops will sell a commuter bike for under $600 new with most pricing these fine beasts upwards of $1000.

If he were looking for a new bike and money was no object my first recommendation would be the Mercedes of bikes, a Gazelle. Built at the same factory in Holland for over 100 years, their quality is so phenomenal that they have been given the title of "Royal" bike company by the Royals of the Netherlands.

In a close second would be a beautiful Batavus which is also assembled in Holland. If Gazelle's are Mercedes then Batavus is the BMW of Dutch bikes. Much like Americans in this country tend to gravitate around Chevy or Ford (but not both), Dutch kids often group into Gazelle followers and Batavus followers. One could only dream that in New York City people would be so passionate about their bikes that they would form rival groups in competition for "coolest" bike in town.

My third option, were money no object in acquiring Bro Bro's bike, would be a Pashley. I own a Pashley and the bike is a dream - it's fast, relatively light for a roadster, and with all the bells and whistles of the Dutch bikes. In fact, the Dutch bikes copied the English roadsters of yore and then, in typical Dutch fashion, improved upon the idea and made it their own. Unfortunately Pashley's are really, really expensive which makes one sad to ride it in the rain or snow. Well, it makes me sad to ride it in the snow and the rain. That is a sadness I don't want Bro Bro to feel.

Thus we move to our fourth option - Craigslist, eBay, and other assorted second hand bike sellers. One could go crazy jumping from eBay to various geographically local Craigslists or one could could to this great site I found. I'm almost hesitant to give the link because I know it will increase my competition in find that perfect commuter bike but since Mr. E rocks the house...

Here is the link:
http://bike.jaxed.com

This site will allow you to search for hundreds, nay thousands of bikes, in a clean interface. It searches eBay, Craigslist, and various other parts of the cloud for specific key words. You can filter by brand, or as I am doing for Bro Bro, "Three Speed" or "3 Speed" with no manufacturer listed. I'm not getting any Pashelys, Gazelles, or Batavus for $150 and under but I have found some descent deals. Now it's up to Bro Bro to get off his ass and make some phone calls.

Cow Bike!

Cow Bike!
Maes kept getting attacked by the cows whenever she biked through the fields. She decided camouflage would be the only way to survive.
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