April 2009


Cold brewed.

Good morning.

Thanks Cody!

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Cody rode her bike on down to the Goodwill and bought a heap of shirts in assorted styles and sizes and colors and she screen printed our happy looking logo onto them.  I think they turned out great!

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If you agree you can take one home for $12.  I’m going to try and talk her into just letting me take one.  It might work…

Tomorrow will mark our first full week open.  Much has happened in that time and things are going well.  We have lots of ideas to try yet, but one that got up and running already is the Your Change CAN Make A Difference Can.

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Every month we will pick a cause, you throw in your change, we pass the money on to them.  We are starting with the Bike Library, because we love what they do, and we miss helping out down there more directly.

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Just like our shop, humble beginnings.

We are closed for business today, but that does not mean business is not getting done.  Cody is hard at work on our business cards and I just ordered us some bikes from Bianchi.  Yep, we are Bianchi dealers now!  We have increased our used bike stock to three with the addition of a really nice Peugeot.  These bikes are better than new, they’re used!

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We were open over the weekend and had lots of folks stop in to check things out.  We have short Sunday hours so we were able to go down and check out the Criterium.  I love going to bike races and not just for the racing.  There is the heckling, of course, but the best thing is that everyone comes out and it is a great social event.   A couple of notable surprises yesterday, Dr. Bethards was passing through town and he stopped down to talk.

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And did mine eyes deceive me?  Nope, Michael Fatka himself at our humble little race.  And wouldn’t you know it, he inspired Tilford to the win in the Pro/1/2 mens race.  How many times has Steve raced this crit I wonder? Michael, Cody, and I had a nice chat about fixies and Bikes at Work trailers.  I really wanted to talk to him about our new shop because his shop in Ames remains one of the coolest I have ever been in in my whole life but he was watching the racing and so were we.  Another time, great to see you at the races Michael!

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I shot a couple of action shots and got this out of focus gem of our local fasties despite the helpful focusing and lighting advice of Mauro.

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Mauro is a great photogropher, you can check out his photos of the day here.  He is back in town rehabbing his knee so he can continue his interupted long journey, we wish him well on that endeavour but are glad to have him back in town.

After the races we went to the Mill for food and beers with some folks and it capped a great day of bike racing.  Now I can cross update blog from my day off to-do list, time to do a tune up and build a bike or three.

And are now perched on the outside of the shop.  Every day we see our shop grow and change.  This morning we have been drilling into concrete to get those signs up.

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As of yesterday we are able to accept Visa & Mastercard credit cards.  We’re sending our shop phone number out into the ether for anyone who needs to call… (319)248-1288.  Call us!  As for bold constructive criticism, lay it on us.  We can take it!

We have one used bike ready to go:

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It’s the red Trek 220 sitting happily with the MASIs.  These days the previous owner is too tall for 24″ wheels and somehow too mature for the ghost flames that run along the top and down tubes.  Flames aren’t cool anymore??  That cuts deep.

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This Free Spirit Brittany should be ready by the end of the day, depending on how busy we are today.  Free Spirits are in no way high-end bikes, but this one will be low-priced and practical, great for someone who is riding short distances or trying to get back into riding a bicycle after a long absence.

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Steve loaded up the cargo bike for a small haul of gently used tires and wheels.  Perfect for used bike, townie action!  The keen observer will notice Steve’s spanky new Ira Ryan frame nested on top.  It is here!

In other news we’re excited for this weekend’s races.  Saturday is the Iowa City Road Race, and Sunday is the always fun Old Cap Crit.  The criterium loops around the downtown area, and fulfills my personal fantasy of seeing only bicycles and pedestrians out in the streets.  Well, except for the lead car… but that’s the only one!  We’ll be there as much as we can, and we hope to see you!

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Today we are trying out being open.  We don’t have our signs on the building yet (but they look great), and we can’t take a credit card, and we will have to handwrite you a receipt if you want to buy something.  But if you need a flat fixed or a chain shortened or even a whole tune up, we can help.

We also have another article in the paper about our little shop, this time in the Cedar Rapids Gazette.

I.C. bike shop caters to commuters

By Dave DeWitte
The Gazette
Photo

(Brian Ray/The Gazette)
Cody Gieselman of Iowa City cleans up the chain of a bicycle at the Iowa City Community Bike Project in April 2006. Gieselman and Steve Goetzelman will open 30th Century Bicycle, 310 Prentiss St., today to serve the needs of people like themselves who commute by bicycle.

IOWA CITY — Iowa City’s newest bike shop is geared up to answer one question: How far will a bicycle take you as a means of transportation?

Cody Gieselman and Steve Goetzelman are opening 30th Century Bicycle, 310 Prentiss St., today to serve the needs of people like themselves who commute by bike.

Instead of super-light racing bicycles or hefty mountain bikes with fat tires, they plan to sell practical bikes like the Surly Long Haul Trucker, which is designed to ride comfortably when it’s weighted down with gear.

Inventory also will include carrying racks, baskets and cloth luggage bags called panniers.

Bike commuters have different needs than casual cyclists, according to Gieselman, a former paraeducator. They need fenders for riding in the rain, and lights for riding at night.

Commuters also need a bike that’s highly sturdy and able to take some punishment. That rules out some of the new bikes in the below-$500 price range, Gieselman said.

30th Century Bicycle plans to offer used as well as new bikes in order to provide the kind of bikes commuters need at affordable prices. Gieselman said she also likes selling used bikes because they have a smaller carbon footprint than a new bike, which is typically manufactured in China and shipped halfway around the world.

Gieselman and Goetzelman are disciples of bicycle commuting.

“We don’t have a car,” Gieselman said. “We ride our bikes in all weather.”

The couple even used an 8-foot-long bicycle trailer manufactured by a company in Ames to move some of their furnishings into the shop. Fortunately, they didn’t have to move all their supplies by bicycle.

“We’re lucky to have some friends who share a community truck,” said Gieselman, who met Goetzelman, a bike mechanic, when they were both working at World of Bikes.

The couple also volunteered together at The Bike Library in Iowa City, where they discovered how many people didn’t have access to a good bike.

The couple looked at opening the shop in the Sycamore Mall area before finding the location in an area of South Gilbert Street that’s already home to three other bike shops. It’s been jokingly dubbed the “blinkie light district,” due to the number of bicycles in the area with blinking safety lights.

The new shop’s hours initially will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Plywood, and thanks for asking.

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Construction is wrapping up.  The signage is one of the last things for us to make dust with and since we cut them outside Cody figured it was safe to bring the big computer down.

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The cargo bike finally experienced being a thousand dollar dream machine!

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The signs are primed for painting and Cody’s artistic touch.

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A local bike commuting icon stopped in to show off his rig and talk about everything and anything.  I have seen him around plenty but had never met him and it was great to learn more about him and his bike.  Check the kicker, he says the design is the finest ever made.

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We  are so close to being open now, there are still at least 15 things to do (I made a list!) and the next couple days should be action packed.  Hope we don’t forget anything major!

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One of the best things about opening your own bike shop is that you get free stuff, like this little painting from Scott at Lucky Creature.  It will find a place to live for sure.  We have also received a bunch of stickers and a bottle of wine so far.  Thanks, gift-givers!

Today the weather is beautiful, so I am taking advantage and riding around with the big trailer getting some chores done.  First up was recycling cardboard.

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Then, with an empty trailer, I rolled over the local hardware store to get some more pegboard hooks and then down to Houseworks, the local consignment superstore to browse.

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That thar is a grill (for personal food cooking use), pegboard hooks, a deadbolt, cork board and six really nice plywood boxes for parts organization.  Big score on the boxes, just $7.50 for the lot!

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You can also see a MASI bike box there.  It is true, we have our MASIs in.  And a Surly LHT.  We should be building them up this weekend, and getting our signs ready to go up on Monday, too.  But talking of bikes, I had an empty trailer again after dropping all that off, so I picked up a couple of used bikes for us to get ready.  Rough shape, but we can get them rolling again, and they will make fine townies.  How do you spell townie anyway?  Towney?  Does not look right…

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And that is where we are.  Cody’s last day teaching is today, so she can be full-time bike shop owner, and we are opening the doors (softly) for business next Wednesday, April 22nd, at 10 am.  Earth Day never had it so good.

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