For the first time ever, for a variety of very good reasons, we have the good fortune to need to say: we need bikes!
So we are holding our first-ever Bike Dive: if you have a bike that could use a new rider, please consider donating it now, during the "off season" while we have time to get it fixed for a couple Spring projects we are working on.
We accept bikes anytime we are open, and most other days between 10am and 6pm (just give a call first to be sure we are in). We accept any bikes, in any condition, but right now we are especially interested in collecting bikes with specific features needed for the Cleveland Refugee Bike Project and a special school project that will both use the most common and durable type available, which are described below.
Other types of bikes, including children’s bikes, will be refurbished by OCBC students, volunteers and staff, and sold to support this and other educational programs. OCBC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, so all donations are tax-deductible.
Bikes for the refugee bike project are the same type used for OCBC’s youth Earn A Bike program, for the same reasons: they are plentiful, very basic, and easily serviceable with no special tools. They are commonly available at department stores (but with proper repair and upgrading they’ll be much more efficient and reliable than when they were bought new!).
Refugee project bikes will be identifiable by these characteristics:
“Mountain” style bikes (26" wheels) -- any size frames, men’s or women’s.
Commonly brands like Huffy, Roadmaster, Murray and Pacific.
They should NOT have shock absorbers on the front fork (often with rubber “accordion” boots) or suspension for the rear wheel (a spring mechanism in the frame).
We are often asked what we do with all our time, since we have so few
open hours. The answer is still, "helping people use bikes," but in big groups, rather than one-by-one.
We also know many folks can't volunteer or use the shop due to conflicts during our limited hours. This season, though, we'll have more capacity -- and more bikes to sell -- so we are planning to expand our open hours, which are currently:
Tues. noon - 6p
Wed. 5 - 9pm
Sat. noon - 4p
We'll be adding at least a few hours to that schedule but we still need enough closed time to take care of non-retail program work, so please take this survey to choose your preference from potential additional open shop times!
OCBC has been designing and building cargo trailers intermittently for some time, as a way to re-use bike parts and provide low-cost carrying capacity for cyclists. In 2012 Barton Hiatt got this project solidly underway (see his work journal at bikecart.org), with prototypes in use and production methods documented. We have been using the last of his prototypes since then, for things like keg rides and trips to the sledding hill, but have been intending to make a bigger version.
We now have an excuse to start building that, with the hopes that it will be usable by citizen tree stewards to water street trees planted under the Reforest Our City project -- we have promised them a working model to demonstrate on Arbor Day, April 24th 2017, with a 10 ft. hose and 55 gal. drum (enough to water 11 trees semi-weekly, weighing 440 lbs). If it works for them we may need to scale up to produce several, but even if not we'll find it useful to have around, and reproducible for anyone who wants a robust DIY alternative to re-purposed kid-trailers.
Any volunteers are welcome to help in this effort, to practice some back-porch engineering and/or learn some useful metal-working skills -- and earn volunteer credits while helping develop another earned income source for OCBC.