Welcome to the City Bikes clearance bin for all the overstock thoughts, rants, news items, and other idea fragments that we need to turn over. Check back often, as stock is refreshed frequently

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Good stuff lately from Bicycle Design blog

First was a nice post on the problem of appealing to non-cyclists, which I have been posting a lot about recently. Unlike me, he was able to pull some stats on the potential size of the markets we are missing from Trek, posted below. My only quibble is that they infer that the answer may lie with folding and Dutch bikes, which are certainly quite in style these days. But I just don't see those bikes resonating with the general public right now, and they are not bringing in those 'blue ocean' people. As much as I love those bicycles personally, I worry that they are indicative of our industry's penchant for only asking ourselves what is cool. No, I don't have any better ideas.
The second post that caught my eye was a little bittersweet. The folks at Trek are pilot testing a kiosk, called the Trek Stop, which features a vending machine that dispenses tubes, patch kits, nutrition bars, and the like. My dad, who serviced and reconditioned vending machines for a few years, mucked around with a couple of old units, in an attempt to create something that we could plunk outside the store for the line of folks with punctures who are lined up every morning. We could never get the units configured quite right, and we were never convinced that they would stand up to the quick and frequent off-hours assaults they would receive outside the Adams Morgan store. So we scotched it. Good to see Trek running with the concept, I do wonder about how sturdy that front glass surface is.
Down in the comments, Aaron of Aaron's Bicycle Repair in Seattle provided the last pic, which he claims is the first tube vending machine, operational since 2005. Sigh. Trek, Aaron, well done to both of you.


Anonymous said...

That is a good point 'what is cool' if we can answer that vis bikes for all folk we'll be bringing biking into a new dawn.

Oh and excellent piece BTW .. thanks

Arleigh said...

I believe BioWheels in Asheville had one of those vending machines set up back in '03/04