Showing posts from 2010

Top 10 Cycling Stories in YYC

In the spirit of this time of year, and the inevitable Top 10 lists of everything under the sun, we have decided to compile our own list of Calgary bicycle related stories - according to us and in no particular order.

Did we miss something or do you disagree? Let us know in the comments.

1. More People Riding - I don't know about you, but I think I saw more people riding bikes this year.  I know, I know, you're all going to say "Sure you saw more riders, you just opened a bike shop"! And perhaps you might be right except that many of my friends have also made the same comment, so I think I might be onto something.  More people riding to work, more people on bikes in general.  The reasons for people choosing to ride more are probably as diverse as the people themselves - saving money, better health, frustrated with traffic or transit - all very hard to pin down for me.  I hope there is someone in Calgary asking these questions because the answers could be very intere…

Tough Stuff

Winter unofficially arrived a few weeks back with those nasty temperatures and corresponding dump of snow, shocking many of us into the realization that we may be in for a long cold winter, especially considering winter wasn't to officially arrive for at least another month.  Officially or not, winter cycling was now in full effect.

For many people in Calgary the bike of choice (rightly or wrongly) for winter commuting is a mountain bike of some kind with some slight modifications like fenders and perhaps studded tires.  And while a mountain bike might be considered nice for the extra frame clearance for wide tires and extra wide gear range they require an awful lot of maintenance of the drivetrain precisely because of that cluster of cogs in the back, rear derailleur, and skinny chain.  On top of that, with a derailleur system, there is no possibility of protecting the drivetrain with a chaincase like you can with a Internally Geared Hub (IGH).

To be clear, I know lots of people h…

Every Journey Starts With One Step

September 17, 2008 - little did I know that this day would change the way I live my life and start me on the path that led to creating BikeBike Inc.

A brief history - before creating BikeBike I was working from home as a sales rep in the bike/sporting goods business for the better part of 12 years.  I drove on average between 40,000-50,000 kms per year all over the prairie provinces of Canada alone in my minivan and flew across North American 3-4 times per year.  I loved the job but there was one thing that kept on nagging at me - like a splinter you cannot get out -
I hated the fact that I spent so much time in my vehicle and felt guilty for driving alone most of the time.

I was spending a lot of time reading about the ecological consequences of our society's driving habits and peak oil theory had just popped onto my radar - remember when oil had hit $147/barrel that year?  I wanted to find away to alleviate my guilt, and perhaps, reduce my own personal impact on the enviroment…

Holiday Season Gift Guide

With the holiday gift giving season just around the corner we thought we would whet your whistle with a few products that we think would be great to receive and equally fun to give.

We have broken down the gifts into a few categories based on price, so, find your comfortable price level and come on in for a visit.

Under $25

Items in this range are great for your bike riding friends or as stocking stuffers.  Here are a couple of our favorites -

DringDring Bells - Handpainted in beautiful Montreal, these bells come in many whimsical flavours and, as the name implies, have that classic "dringdring" sound when rung. $25
Crane Bells - quite simply, some of the most classic looking bells around and our #1 selling bell.  There are 4 models to choose from, all with slightly different tones.  $18
NiteRider Lightning Bug and Stinger Lights - available in 6 colours with easy on/off removal these little lights pack a punch.  The 1/2 watt Stinger taillight is visable up to 1km away.  $17-$25…

Winter Cycling Thoughts and Strategies

First off, let me confess that I have come to love the “frigid season”.  Cycling in winter is fun with all that slipping and sliding, you generally keep really warm due to the extra effort required to pedal in snow and ice, you have the pathways almost to yourself as fair weather cyclists are hiding till spring, and motorists are going much slower (generally) than summer due to the road conditions and often leave more space between themselves and you.

The keys to a successful season of winter cycling are"

1- Preparation of your bicycle
2 - Planning of your clothing choices
3 - Route planning around the city

Your Bike

If you already have a bike you use for commuting or running errands, you can do a few things to that bike to get it ready for winter:

1 - The most important accessory is a set of full fenders, if you don't already have them. Full fenders will keep you dry and keep the nasty road salt off your bike too. There are sizes to fit most, but not all bikes, and this s…


Alright folks, now is the time to get in on some ridiculously good deals on remaining 2010 bikes.  The sale will run until these bikes are all gone to happy new owners.  Here is the breakdown...

Brodie Ocho regular $1150 now $950! - 53cm and 56cm only
Brodie Romax regular $1899 now $1499! - 57cm only
KHS Urban Soul regular $419 now $359
KHS Green regular $379 now $289!
Batavus BuB regular $649 now $549!
Dahon Ciao P8 regular $1199 - now $899!
Pashley Sonnet regular $999 - now $749! - 22" only
Batavus CS Spirit regular $1250 - now $799! - 57cm only

Also ongoing is our 50% off table!  There are all sorts of items on the table - everything from baskets to fenders, grips to cablesets - hurry down!  

Finally - we found about a dozen pairs of Diadora cycling shoes in the basement, various sizes, all brand new but around 7 years old.  ALL SHOES $30/pair!

Alberta's Only "Brooks England - Dealer of Excellence!"

Brooks England is world-renowned for its incredible leather saddles, quality, style, and longevity.  They have been creating these masterpieces since 1878 and have amassed an army of devoted fans who appreciate the quality, comfort, and old-world charm that wafts from every Brooks product.

We are very proud to be selected as Alberta's first "Dealer of Excellence".

What wewill have in stock - 8 different saddle models including the B17, Colt, Imperial's, Aged, and Classic models.  We are also the only bike shop in Alberta that will have their incredibley beautiful and tough backpacks, sachels, and holdalls.  Plus, we have the full line of saddle bags and accessories - including toestraps, grips, bartape, mudflaps, Proofide - and wait for it - the Oxford Rain Cape!

With the holiday season just around the corner, consider the gift of style and durability for that special bike-person in your life - or perhaps yourself!  Brooks products are the perfect upgrade to your cur…

Hawksley Workman Loves Bicycles!

Not only is he an amazing songwriter and musician - he loves bikes!

Airdrie's InterCityExpress (ICE) Allows Bikes on Board

Airdrie Transit launched their new service this month for commuters looking for an option to leave their car at home, and by all accounts, this new service was welcomed by many people in both Airdrie and Calgary.  Of particular note for cyclists is that AT will have bike racks on these buses once spring arrives - however, in the meantime, they are allowing people to board this service WITH THEIR BIKES.  Here is a Twitter conversation between me and Airdrie's Transit Coordinator -

@ Any idea if the ICE service will have bike racks on buses? Some customers have asked.

@ Transit Coordinator for Transit here...we've removed the bike racks for the season. Back in the spring

@ - Wow! Awsome! Will be sure to promote that service. Bike commuters thank you!

@ Yes, our fleet to will have bike racks back in the spring. In the meantime riders are permitted to board with their bikes


On the other hand, Calgary T…

2011 New Bike Brands!

We are very excited and pleased to be Calgary's exclusive dealer for two cool bike brands - one is very new, one is very old.  Say hello to LINUS and Raleigh!

First, lets talk about LINUS.  Based in Venice Beach, California, LINUS arrived on the scene just last year and in that short time, has received a ton of positive press about both their designs and ride quality.  I think you'll agree, LINUS bikes are very classic looking, chic, perhaps even fashionable - with a ride quality that is both comfortable and nimble.

The 2011 lineup includes the Roadster's and Dutchi's in singleseed, 3-speed, and 8-speed options as well as two "retro" styled bikes - the Gaston and Dover - with 5-speed internal gearing with downtube shifter.  The Mixte model is available in 3-speed and a new 8-speed version too.

Delivery of these fine bicycles is still a little ways off - perhaps March 2011- but we are so pleased to add them to our lineup we just had to tell you now!

Since we o…

Glenmore Tr & 37 St SW

View Larger Map

Much has been said and written about this notorious intersection here in Calgary - mostly because it is a choke point for traffic and has been, until recently, the last stoplight on Glenmore Trail causing massive traffic headaches. From a cyclist point of view, this area was pretty scary and needed help. It is a very popular route for getting south towards the Weaselhead area (and even further south towards Fish Creek) and is also the northern route for cyclists heading towards Edworthy Park, the Bow River Pathway, and downtown. Bike route signage was spotty at best, useless at worst.

There was much specualtion that the Ring Road would eventually go through this area but the Tsu Tina Nation, the Province, and the City could not come to an agreement on the SW section of the Ring Road, leaving this intersection as a huge traffic problem that needed some improvements fast. The City has since changed the whole intersection - removing the traffic lights, installing roun…

Movie Night at BikeBike!

We are very excited to announce some bikefun happening over the winter months - Movie Night at BikeBike!

What is Movie Night at BikeBike?

Basically, we will clear out the shop and setup as a mini-theatre complete with popcorn.  All you need to do is show up with a chair or pillow and a donation to the Calgary Food Bank.  Cash and non-perishable food items will be accepted, so please give generously to Calgary's less fortunate families.

We have 6 dates lined up from October to March, with 6 different bike-themed films to keep your fire for bikes burning throughout the wintertime.  Here is the tenative line-up...

October 15 - Triplettes Of Belleville
November 12  - Quicksilver
December 10 - B.I.K.E.
January 21 - The Bicycle Thief
February 18 - Pee-Wee's Big Adventure
March 18 - Breaking Away

Please help us help our fellow Calgarians, and stoke your bikelove at the same time!

Brilliant Batavus Commercial

Bicycle companies have historically been terrible at creating television advertisements that appeal to the average Joe/Jane- if creating them at all!  The only bicycle ads I have ever seen on TV usually coincide with the yearly doper circus we know as The Tour de France, and those ads, 99.99999% of the time show some superfit, emaciated, pro rider scaling some mountain or winning a bunch sprint on a $10,000 carbonfibre-whiz-bang-speed machine - hardly average Joe/Jane activities or products. 

Thankfully the Dutch have come to the rescue with their reknowed sensibility and dry humor.  The commercial is in Dutch, but is translated as follows -

The first guy says "Hey neighbour, ESP, ABS, fog lamps, 16 inch rims and 6 gears."
The second guy says "28 inch rims, 8 gears, high power lights and computer integrated in the steering. My wife and daughter have the same."

Great stuff!

3-1-1 and You

I am not sure how things work in other cities, but here in Calgary, when you notice a problem with city infrastructure - like a broken water main or brutal non-detour like we see here, you are encouraged to call 3-1-1 and report it.

This service is something that Calgary cyclists should be using as often as possible, for a few reasons:

- All reports are logged by the city for future (and sometimes) immediate consideration of where upgrades and repairs are needed.
- Transportation Solutions logs all of the bicycle and pedestrian focused reports and reviews them when looking at ped/bike upgrades.  In fact, I have been told by a staffer inside TS that this is the best way to log concerns and complaints with the city specifically regarding bike routes and paths.
- It works!  I have proof!  Check out the image at left with the asphalt ramp.  I took a photo of this area, complaining that there were no ramps here, making it difficult for people to get through here safely and efficiently.  I s…

Copenhagen Cargo Bike Culture

Great video showing all sorts of people who ride cargo bikes, why they ride them, and some of the styles that are available on the market.

(pssst - we can sell you one too!)

Copenhagen Cargo Bikes from Streetfilms on Vimeo.

For Fun - Videos Featuring Bikes

Here are a few of our favorite videos that feature bikes - enjoy!

Queen - Bicycle Race
(warning - a wee bit of skin)

30 Seconds To Mars - Kings and Queens

Mark Ronson - The Bike Song

The Bike Song
Uploaded by rockohoward. - See the latest featured music videos.

BFF 2008 Tokyo BMX Jam

Bicycle Film Festival TOKYO '08 PART 1 from Eli Tokyo Jitensha-Jin on Vimeo.

Bike Commute to BikeBike Photo Essay by Andreas

My son Andreas wanted to take some photos on the way to work this morning - so, I present to you, Bike Commute in 13 Images by Andreas Carter.