Thursday, February 19, 2009

Saving Green

This past weekend the Cambridge Antique Market had their annual Open House/Dealer Days Sale. We were there all three days (in our basement "shop") and much to our delight we were very busy, especially for a February weekend.

Monday a visitor came in and was wearing a bright green safety vest. On the back was some print Walk/Ride Days. Of course we “chatted” him up about the vest. And he introduced us to the Green Streets Initiative and told us a bit about this program. How it started with a small group of parents that decided they wanted to make the streets of Cambridge safer for their children to walk and bike to school. In March, 2006 Walk/Ride Days began in four Cambridge Schools. And it has spread to several other cities.

Visit their web site and check out this program. It’s a good deal that hopefully will continue to become a part of the big picture that helps push bikes a bit further into our commuting/living options.
We have decided to join this growing list of sponsors that will give you a reward for "Going Green". Come in during the last Friday of the Month, wearing green and/or let us know you are taking part in Walk/Ride Days and you get 10% off your purchase. It is not all about bicycle shops, mark your calendar for the last Friday of the month. Check their list of sponsors for what suits your needs for the day and get a reward for Going Green!

What a deal, you get to say Bike Me and Save!
Frugality with an attitude? Maybe…a little.

Ride more and save more green!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Bicycle Film Festival & Ride of the Week

One of the many great parts of living here in the Boston/Cambridge is there is more talented people per square inch than most every where else in the world. With all the incredible universities and colleges that attract and hold on to all those people that not only attend but then run, maintain etc. these places. Then there is all business that is ancillary to all of that… ok I could go on but you already got the point.

So it is my hope that some of you with that great talent will enter into the
Bicycle Film Festival. From their site;
“The Bicycle Film Festival celebrates the bicycle. We are into all styles of bikes and biking. If you can name it-Tall Bike Jousting, Track Bikes, BMX, Alleycats, Critical Mass, Bike Polo, Cycling to Recumbents- we've probably either ridden or screened it. What better way to celebrate these lifestyles than through art, film, music and performance? We bring together all aspects of bicycling together to advocate its ability to transport us in many ways. Ultimately the Fest is about having a good time.
We have been fortunate enough to include works of established artists such as Jorgen Leth, Mike Mills, Jonas Mekas, Blonde Redhead,
Swoon and Michel Gondry among others as part of our programming. Many of the artists who have participated in the Bike Film Fest such as the Neistat Brothers and Lucas Brunelle are gaining more and more re-cognition for their work. Sign up for the email list or just come out and enjoy our 8th Annual Bicycle Film Festival.”

Brendt Barbur Director
P.S. bikes rule

So get on it, you only have until March 7, 2009, good luck!
What better way, than on film, to say Bike Me!
PS: The Ride of Week is a 1970's Phillips 5 speed.
We will be @ our "shop" all weekend long w/10% off all bikes. Come on by and get your "new old" ride.

Monday, February 2, 2009


Bicycles are certainly green as a method of transportation, something we can all agree upon. Our Shop provides the Boston/Cambridge area with used and vintage bicycles, pretty green too you might say. Something that is even GREENER, perhaps as green as it gets, are bicycles built from a highly renewable resource BAMBOO!

Bamboo, it is better that steel for tensile strength and better than concrete for compression. Bamboo has a tensile strength superior to mild steel, plus a weight-to-strength ratio surpassing that of graphite. Bamboo is the strongest growing woody plant on earth with one of the widest ranging habitats of more than 1500 species thriving in diverse terrain from sea level to 12,000 feet on every continent but the poles. And what makes it so renewable is it also grows the fastest: clocked shooting skyward at 2 inches an hour. Some species can grow one and a half meters a day. Not bad for what was thought to be, when I was a kid, something that was used to build cheap outdoor furniture from.

In the recent past bamboo has shown up in hardwood flooring systems, great looking hardwood appeal from a renewable source. And over the last several years bamboo has showed up as a source to build bicycles from. Of course in Asia bamboo has been used for so much more for centuries. History tells us that apparently Bamboo Bicycles are nothing new, the first bamboo bicycles were shown at the London Stanley Show of 1894 and caused a sensation (See English patent No 8274 on April 26, 1894).

When bamboo is used for building bicycles and when builders like Craig Calfee are building with it, I find that exciting. Why, besides my interest in such a bicycle, I am truly worried that my children’s generation (Gen Y'ers) could very well be screwed, in an ecological, economic, and or you name it manner. Will bamboo bicycles save the world; well maybe not…but it is the collective of such ideas that just might. It is great when some people just stay out of "the box" and think, that is what will save the world.

I Googled Bamboo Bicycle Builder in Boston…and got nothing local. So if anyone knows about someone building with bamboo in these parts, please leave a comment. From what I read those who have ridden on bamboo give glowing reviews.

Not unlike the auto industry so much comes form those elite worlds of endurance or racing, we could be witness to new world “Woodies” (Woodie was a term used for wood body cars and truck back in the day). I sure do hope that a local bike builder in ther Boston/Cambridge area starts bamboo building in the near future. And it would be very cool is if someone started to “mass-produce” bicycles of bamboo. Not to mention it would be interesting to see how such a frame would stand up to our lovely New England winters.

Several articles are linked below, Google bamboo bicycles or YouTube Bamboo Bicycles
building bamboo bicycles, or bamboo for construction material, just to name a few and you can go on for hours.

What is old is new again! Yet again it is the ancient and old world that shows us we need to pay more attention to what we have here and now.

Plant more and ride more!

More Bamboo
Time Magazine-Green to the Extreme
Newsweek Magazine-Stronger Than Steel