Monday, August 9, 2010

NoMi Needs a Bike Shop!

Post and bottom two photos by the Hawthorne Hawkman. Top photo by the Irving Inquisition.

I've advocated for a bike shop in NoMi before, and I'm repeating that call now. With the exception of books, movies, and music, I make most of my purchases within the confines of NoMi. But when I picked up a bike, I got it off of craigslist. This bike has become something of a microcosm of money I COULD HAVE spent right here, if I had the choice.

First off, it cost about $70 used, but a new bike of this brand would likely run $250-$350. I may be a rare breed, but if I had the choice, I would have spent the extra $200 or so if it meant supporting a local business. Even so, I still needed to find some bells and whistles for it. For instance, what you see below was initially the mechanism for keeping the bicycle secure:

This tiny lock keeps the seat attached to the body of the bike. I've added an extra layer of protection by forgetting the combination. Even the most aggressive interrogation techniques couldn't get it from me. However, that led to the necessity of picking up an actual lock, which I had to do at the Midtown Greenway bike shop.

While there, I also bought an attachment for a water bottle, a sport drink, and some snacks. The grand total there was $50. We're now approaching $400 I could have spent in NoMi if we had a bike shop.

My bike also has another unique feature - a customized headlight.

It bears pointing out that the previous owner lives in Loring Park, and put this attachment on because people kept on stealing his actual light. His solution was to make this look as junky as possible in the hope that no one would bother anymore, and clearly it worked. But outside of the theft-ridden Loring Park neighborhood, perhaps it's time to make my bike look a little nicer.

Last but not least, my chain fell off several weeks ago and ever since then there has not been much of a correlation between the numbers on my gearshift and the actual gear my bike seems to be in. I probably did a poor job of reattaching it and the bike needs a tune-up. I know a few people who can do this for me, but IF WE HAD A BIKE SHOP IN NOMI I would just go straight there and pay for the service.

I'm not even much of an avid biker, and already this is $500 in one year that I would have spent in my neighborhood if I had the chance. I'm sure NoMi is full of people like me who would do the same.


  1. Maybe you should open a bike shop.

  2. Thanks for writing about this again.

    We will make it happen!

  3. If I had the business experience necessary to make it successful (and the up-front capital), I would in a heartbeat. We even have a location that would be PERFECT. But I want such a venture to actually make money and be successful, which means I need to try and attract other businesses here.

  4. Right now the closest to supporting a Northside bike shop would be to support Behind Bars in NE the owner Chuck is a northside resident. 208 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN, 55413

  5. I would be a semi-annual supporter of a NoMi bike shop - annual tune up and annual "oops, I fell down again and need a repair." And, of course, a cute new biking shirt every year. That's important! -Chriss

  6. It makes sense to have a bike shop. With all these civil bikeway projects we have on the burner like the 26th avenue bikeway, having a bike shop makes perfect sense.

  7. I am starting to think that we might actually have TWO in the hopper... stay tuned...


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