Bike Shop Hub Center:

The business and work culture of Bike Shop Hub in all it's glory.

When we have new products, sales, weird marketing ideas, commentary on the cycling industry, or embarrasing photos of of the staff, this is where you'll find it.

And since we are located in Arizona, we'll talk about the cycling scene in the state.

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Send In Your Cycling Photos

We get to see and touch and test all sorts of great cycling gear here at our world headquarters. But we actually get to meet very few of our customers in person.

We just know you are out there taking pictures of your amazing cycling adventures. We want to see them! The best ones will be shared on the relevant section of this blog: Bike Cargo Trailers, Bike Touring, Bike Technology and Family Cycling.

Monthly Archives: June 2010

Getting Started with Kid’s Bicycle Helmets

little-girl-with-bike-child-helmet-on-trikeWe’ve just started to sell children’s bike helmets at BikeKidShop.com. I’ve been doing some homework on a variety of issues and considerations surrounding kid’s bike helmets.

There are quite a few different ways for children to get involved in cycling and wearing a children’s bike helmet makes all of these much safer. Think about all of the ways kids can be involved with cycling. As passengers on bicycles kids can ride in bike child trailers, trailer-cycles, in bike child seats, on tandem stoker kits and on specialty bikes such as Bakfiets and the Zigo leader with front child passenger areas. When it comes to the different ways kids ride bike, there are starter devices like, balance bikes, tricycles and bicycles with training wheels.

All of these ways for children to be involved in cycling have their own measure of safety concerns. A good quality bike child helmet is a must-have for protecting your child’s head however it is that they ride a bike. Bike child helmets also serve to protect your children in other fast sports like skateboarding and rollerblading.

Free Bell Child Helmets with Chariot Carriers & Croozer Trailers

chariot-cougar-2-orange-chasis-product-cropped+helmet-300pxBikeKidShop.com is the newest of our three websites and we’ve been working hard on expanding our lineup of cycling accessories for kids. Just this week, we got in a shipment of Bell and Giro Children’s Helmets. As a kickoff to offering safety lids for kids, we thought we’d start by offering a free one with the purchase of a Croozer Trailer or Chariot Carrier.

Pedalgogy: Balance Bikes and Training Wheels

A couple of years ago I was at a local bike shop buying a bike for my future stepdaughter who, at the time, was an eight-year-old girl who did not yet know how to ride on two wheels.

We asked about training wheels, and was told by the owner of the shop that it was not possible to put training wheels on a bike with a rear derailleur. Simply not possible, he claimed, because derailleur gets in the way of the struts, or the brackets, or the other thingy. Anyway, I just accepted it as authoritative truth. Then I set my mind on teaching the kid to ride on two wheels from the get go.

In the past week I’ve learned two things.

First, it may have been for the best that we didn’t use training wheels.

Strider Childs Balance Bike

Strider Child's Balance Bike

In fact, I now believe that training wheels are at best a crutch for people who should have learned to ride at a younger age. At worst they are an impediment that keeps young kids from transitioning to full competence on bikes.

Fighting words? Call it the zeal of a convert. Last week I was introduced to balance bikes. I took a close look at a Strider Child Balance Bike, I talked to a sales rep, and I watched a couple of YouTube videos.

That qualifies me as an Internet pseudo-expert. So pity the next person who gives me half a reason to go off half-cocked about how best to teach a child to ride.

I was pretty badass on a tricycle, but I was seven or eight years old when I finally learned to ride a bike. I now have to wonder whether my tricycle and training wheels stunted my progress toward two wheels.

The other thing I learned this week is that, contrary to what was said by Mr. Bike Shop Owner Who Shall Remain Nameless, you absolutely can put training wheels on a bike with a derailleur. I did it.

A derailleur living in haromony with Sunlite Adjustable Training Wheels

A derailleur living in harmony with Sunlite Adjustable Training Wheels

I can see how it could be potentially problematic with the struts, but top training wheel engineers in advanced research labs have solved that problem.

We have two kinds of training wheels here, and both worked on the child’s bike that I used for testing. The Sunlite Adjustable Bike Training Wheels had the most clearance from the derailleur. The Wald Bike Training Wheels worked as well, but might have had difficulty working on another bike with a different derailleur or a different bottom dropout design.

So, fine. If you must. Put training wheels on your kid’s bike, if only to prove a certain bike shop owner wrong. Just don’t be surprised when the kid who learned on a Strider leaves your kid in the dust.


For the testament of another convert, check out Learning to Ride: Balance Bikes by John Coe.
Also take a look at this recent photo of Eden on her Skuut Balance Bike over at PedalPoweredFamily.com

Electric Push Bike Trailer

This Week Bike Shop Hub and the Bike Trailer Blog are focusing on the growing electric bike revolution. Electric Bikes, Future or Fad? is a Bike Shop Hub article exploring the bigger picture of e-bike popularity. Obviously e-bikes have some implications when it comes to bicycle trailers as well. An electric assist bike or or kit could certainly make pulling a trailer easier, or enable a greater carrying capacity, but what about an electric assist bicycle trailer?

We received some photos and a story from Dave in Colorado Springs. Dave is a long-time out door enthusiast loves to ride his bike into the woods for recreational activities, but anyone who has been to Colorado Springs knows that just about everywhere you would want to go, the roads point up. For Dave this meant that hauling a day’s outdoor supplies in a bike cargo trailer was going to be a steep endeavor, so to speak.

Fabian’s Avant Garde Bicycle Trailer

This is one of the nicest looking examples of a DIY bike cargo trailer we’ve seen. Here is what Fabian has to say about his design:

“I just wanted to build an avant garde bicycle trailer that was somewhat unique. I’ve yet to fit a set of fully functional automotive trailer lights (indicator and brake) to complete the look. I’m still scratching my head as to how to mount a set of mechanical trailer brakes, but i’ll get there in the end.

The trailer base is a 2007-2008 Burley Tailwagon, and I’ve built an aluminium reinforced box section that attaches to the base. The photos show a set of gas struts to add a bit of flare.

Electric Bikes: Future or Fad?

Ambrose_E-BikeKit_Testimonial

Well, like it or not electric bikes are growing in popularity and they look like they are here to stay. Many traditionalist have raised a questionable eyebrow at the growing popularity of electric bikes, also known as “e-bikes.” But even the most dedicated fixie hipster can’t deny the growing sales numbers world wide of e-bikes. Holland, a country already well renowned for its use of bikes as a primary transportation method, has seen a dramatic increase in the number of electric bikes on the roads. In 2009 dutch bike shops saw the sales of e-bikes exceeded those of standard bikes. Is it that Holland is ahead of the curve or that e-bikes have just found a useful niche in Hollands transportation system?

E-bike brake down

In order to understand the future of electric bikes it is important to understand the bikes them selves. In general e-bikes come in three different styles, or assists as the industry has come to coin. Throttle assist, pedal assist and throttle only are the most common types of e-bikes offered by the major e-bike manufactures.

Unhitched

ME
I’m Ted, and I’ve never pulled a bike trailer.

YOU
Hello Ted.

I’m a new guy at Bike Shop Hub. You’d reckon I had to have some minimal cycling cred to get in the door.
I do.
This is it:

Ted and Chamba

Wandertec SAX-BOB Cargo Liner Special!

wandertec-sax-&-cargo-net

Now until June 29th the Bike Trailer Shop is offering a free Wandertec SAX Liner with the purchase of any BOB trailer. The SAX BOB liner is the perfect accessory for any BOB trailer. By them selves BOB trailers are some of the best single wheeled bicycle trailers on the market but, their steel mesh floors and open sides can make it tricky to pack smaller or random items securely in the trailer. Well this is were the SAX liner comes in, made of heavy duty ballistics nylon, the SAX twandertec-sax-bob-trailer-cargo-liner-with groceries-croppedurns your otherwise open BOB trailer into a closed sided storage friendly trailer. The SAX is great for those looking to haul groceries or other items that may not require the use of a large dry bag to secure items into the trailer.

Normally a $39.99 value, the SAX is free with the Purchase of a BOB Yak Trailer or a BOB Ibex Trailer. Two of the best single wheeled bike cargo trailers just got better with this great offer. The SAX are handmade in the U.S.A. right here in Flagstaff, AZ. It’s that time of year again to pack up the bike and hit the road or dirt for some great outdoor adventures. Start your adventure off right with the wandertec-sax-on-gravel-in-sun-croppedright equipment. A BOB trailer with the Wandertec SAX and a Wandertec cargo net are the perfect combination for keeping your gear stowed and secure on any bike tour. Check out some customer stories with their SAX in action, Making a BOB Train and Jeff’s Trailer Reviews, Part 1 BOB Trailers.

Greetings from the Burley Trailers Team

Hello, Bike Trailer Blog readers!

Im Eric Hanson, and Im a sales dude at Burley Design in Eugene, OR. Josh and the team at the Bike Trailer Shop offered me the chance to introduce Burley Trailers to their readers and I thought it would be a great chance to show off some of the cool things Burley has been up to lately.

But first, allow me to share a little history. In the beginning, there was a farmers market and a dream. From a humble beginning manufacturing ways to haul arts and crafts, Burley quickly grew into one of the foremost builders of bike trailers for children and cargo. Since 1978, weve built millions of trailers and a whole generation of kids has grown up envious of the other moms and dads in the neighborhood who loved their kids enough to buy a Burley. For 32 years weve stuck to what we know best: cycling and figuring out how to have the most fun and get the most use out of a bike.

Backwards Casey’s Gold Sprint Triumph

Good times were to be had at the close of Flagstaff’s bike-to-work week. The Green Room hosted the event that included gold sprints and a bicycle fashion show in which I had the chance to ride the events mc onto the stage on the back of my Xtracycle Radish (while pulling a Wandertec BONGO bike trailer).

To finish of the gold sprints, Bike Shop Hub’s own backwards Casey was confronted with a backwards challenge by backwards Kyle. The race was slow and lethargic (fast and furious in reverse). It was also the closest of all the races that evening as the riders stayed neck-and-neck throughout. Eric of Absolute Bikes jumped on stage to encourage the racers with some fortune cookies in the face. At the end Casey squeaked out a win. And in backwards tradition, he bought backwards Kyle a beer.