Friday, October 5, 2007

Brakes and a Chain

I've taken on another project: Bike Rehab.

I'm incredibly tired of my old cruiser. She's served me well, but let's admit it, she's kind of "baby's first bike," and I'm ready to move onto something a bit more sophisticated. While I was away on the east coast, a friend "found" me an old bike (read: took it because it looked abandoned). Here he is:

He's in really good shape, all he needs is brakes and a chain. And perhaps some new paint and tape for the handle bars. And new tubes. But honestly, that's not very much and it shouldn't take more than a few weeks and a lot of help before he's up and running.

Here's where I will be doing my rehabbing: The Bike Church. The idea is "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." It's located on campus and it's totally volunteer and non-profit.

It's completely un-affiliated with any religion, but they've truly embraced the theme. When the bike church is open, there are "ministers" available to help you work on your bike. But they don't take bikes and fix them for you. You have to do all the labor yourself, and there are literally piles of bikes and parts lying around that are available to use. You can borrow tools and get advice and parts, and there are suggested donations for all of these services.

Spare parts area:

I hope to learn a lot about bikes while I do this, and I'm already feeling far less intimidated by my bike than I was previously. Minister Simion helped me put some front brakes on my bike on Wednesday, and now I know how the brakes work on my bike! Amazing how that happens. Learn by doing. Wish me luck!


akatsuki said...

Hey E. I really love your blog. Not just because it has great photos and is well written, but because the content is so different from anything that exists in Japan. I love the contrast. Good luck with the bike!

Nicole said...

Uh, oh, that bike looks very similar to my bike shape-- it's a racin' bike, hah hah. No upright handles there. That is very ambitious to learn how to fix up your bike. I've been meaning to do that myself.