Category Archives: Bike Co-op

Biking On Campus

Two weeks of the fall semester is underway and I’ve seen tons of students commuting by bike around the Tempe campus. It just warms my heart! Or maybe it’s the fact the temperature is still lingering in the three digit temperatures and probably will be for quite awhile still to come.

But anyways, it’s good to see lots of students on bikes. So many actually- I sometimes can’t find a bike rack with an empty spot on the Tempe campus. Maybe it’s when I’m on campus that is just really busy or possibly more and more people are making the choice to ride a bike for transportation.

One morning last week, I rode around for awhile looking for a spot to park my ride. I finally found an open spot and locked it up with two locks: a thick cable woven through my tires and a Kryptonite U-lock to seal the deal. It’s important to secure your bike with two locks in order to discourage bike thieves from tampering with it. Many other students have a method that works for them, but because I have been a victim of theft in the past, I now take these precautions. I even saw some bikes leaning on their kickstand and locked with a U-lock through a tire to prevent the bike from moving. As this technique can probably work, it does leave many other parts susceptible to be broken off or stolen. I am no expert, but just stating an unintended possibility of locking a bike this way- especially in a town that is known for bike theft.

My bike suffered a minor issue today, as when I unlocked the bike I noticed my chain had popped off. I normally don’t like to get very dirty, but I knew my bike was an important element in getting me from place to place for the remainder of the day. So I manned up and stretched out the greasy chain until I thought it was back in place. Hooray! I actually fixed something! Or so I thought….until I began to ride. The chain was moving alright, but it was making all kinds of clinking sounds that continued even after switching gears back and forth. At least I made it to my next class. I guess I’ll deal with it later.

So as soon as class let out, I unlocked my bike and rode it clink-clinking my way to the other end of campus and paid the guys at the Bike Co-op a visit. They were pretty busy today, so I guess others were having bike issues, also.

Luckily the chain was an easy fix for the bike experts on campus. They saved the day and sent me on my way to my next class. Thanks a bunch!

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Bike maintenance classes by Tempe Co-op

Only five classes remain!

Last Monday started off the first of six bicycle maintenance classes given by a local bike co-op/educational center. The friendly and knowledgeable Bike Saviours volunteers use hands-on teaching to assist us rookies with common bike maintenance.

I didn’t know what to expect from the first class. Lucky for me, there were a variety of people in attendance. Some people scaled on the intermediate level of bicycle mechanics, while the remainder of the class either knew very little or almost nothing about fixing bikes. I happen to fall into the second category, which made me wonder just what I had signed up for!

My initial nervousness faded after we broke into smaller groups to inspect each bike. We were to determine the bike’s condition and if we thought it could be fixed. Because the bikes and parts are all donations, some are beyond repair. We were asked to share our findings in a very casual manner.
“Anyone that wants to speak, we’d like to hear it.”
One man said the bike in front of him looked like it spent the last 15 years outside, but with a little TLC he thought it’d be a fine ride.

Listening to headset instructions

Last weeks topic was headsets. No I didn’t know what they are at first- but I learned!
My group disassembled the headset, which is the bearing assembly that allows the handle bars to swivel. We took out the bearings and cleaned them thoroughly. Then we reassembled the header. As we worked, Bike Saviour volunteers walked around to make sure we understood what we were doing and gave additional tips. Click here to view the handout on headsets.

Common threaded headset

Bike Saviours, not only offers classes, but the shop is also open to the public a few evenings during the week. Tools are free to use and the co-op sells bike parts for a minimal cost. The best part is having bike experts at your side for assistance! From the selection of donated bicycles you can pick out a bike to fix yourself and the shop volunteers are there to teach you how to fix it along the way.
The remaining maintenance classes will be held on Monday evenings at 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. in the rear workshop of the Sunset Clothing building.
  •         601 E. University, Tempe, AZ 85281 – located near the cross roads of University Drive and Roosevelt Street

Bike Saviours Information:

An audio slide show: The ASU Bike Co-op

This slide show opens the doors of ASU’s Bike Co-op while we speak with the director, Mike Marriott. The Bike Co-op service is free to ASU students and faculty members. The Bike Co-op sells any parts that you might need at discounted prices. Payment is accepted by Sun Card only. The Bike Co-op is located on the Tempe campus in the Student Recreation Center building. The hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.