Wicker Bike

15 07 2011

Last weekend, I spent a rainy Sunday helping some brave folks learn more about bike repair, commuting, and cycling in general at Edmonton’s first SkillShare Fair. It was a pretty slow day, as the rain discouraged a lot of people from attending the outdoor event, but near the end of the day I met Sara and her beautiful bicycle.

Sara and her wicker bike.

A classic steel loop frame bike with a back drum brake is the skeleton for an amazing custom job, with almost every square inch of the frame and accessories wrapped in wicker.

Apparently wicker isn't just for baskets.

There was so much attention to detail on this bike that one could just gaze at it for hours, and the workmanship was incredible. I particularly found the carved wooden fenders and chainguard mind blowing.

Wooden fenders and chain guard and a bamboo mixte-loop line? No way!

This bike is somewhat of a mystery, though. She bought it second hand, and wasn’t able to get too much information about it, like who had created this gorgeous cellulose beast.

Sara departing on the wicker bike. I was so entranced with it that I forgot to offer to raise her saddle.

The level of workmanship on this bicycle suggests that it wasn’t just a one-off, and a quick internet search has confirmed that there are similar bikes out there. Does anyone out there have any idea where this bike came from?

Let’s Be Friends!

12 07 2011

Last month, a little gold folding bike from the ’70’s was donated to EBC. The CCM Traveler was in rough shape, but the shiny gold paint under all the dirt and car stickers looked promising, so I decided to clean it up and give it a makeover to create a quirky sweet bike like my own Porta-Bike.

Porta-Bike meets Goldy Foldy. I think they want to be friends.

The wheels needed replacing, so I salvaged a set of purple rims and white tires that were too sexy for the kids’ bike they were on. Add some white pedals, a white saddle and overhaul most of the bearings, and an uber-cool one-of-a-kind bike was born.

The 20 inch white tire club.

It didn’t take long for Goldy Foldy to sell, and it’s been at its new home for a while now, but, hopefully, Porta-Bike will get a chance to go for a ride with the Goldy Foldy again.

I Have Never Wanted to Catch up with a Car So Badly…

8 07 2011

A couple of days ago, I was on my way to a hot summer day at the sweatshop, riding down a busy four lane artery. I was in low gear and riding with one hand, because in the other hand was an extra-large squishee. A car passed pretty close to me (not unusual), but before they passed, out the passenger’s window appeared an arm, trying to grab at my ass! WTF! For a split second I hesitated, questioning whether I should sacrifice my chilly treat, then sprinted off (in low gear, which is still pretty fast on le Mercier, but I couldn’t switch it up it because of the riding-one-handed-in-traffic-with-downtube-shifters thing). It was only a couple blocks to the highway, and they made it to the off ramp before I could catch up and deliver my icy message to the lap of a dude who tried to grab a stranger’s ass.