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Calvin's Corner

Bike Festivals

Bike festivals are always fun.   People come to them in a good mood and are ready to talk about what they like best....bikes.   The University of Minnesota recently hosted the "Bike-In at the Bell," held at the University's Bell Museum.    It was an evening of outdoor activities, with booths from various organizations, live bands, an outdoor movie afer dark, and, obviously, bikes, bikes, bikes. My role there was to teach bike repair, and enjoy the festivities. Here are my observations from the evening.

"Goldie Gopher," the U. of Minnesota mascot, was there in construction mode building the expo venue. I was sure Goldie would rather be swinging a HW-2 then a carpenter's hammer.



The Bike-In the Bell catered to a different demographic then the racing circuit. I did not see a single full suspension MTB, a carbon road frame, or a Campagnolo group.   However, older Raleighs, Peugeots, Schwinns, and of course, single speeds were everywhere. (photo credit- Shanai Matteson)



A fellow exhibitor inflates his animal doll display using the PFP-2, and some bleed tubing, while a student learns how to adjust the rear derailleur.


The sign on the tent declares, "Learn Bike Repair Here."   It wasn't difficult to get people under the tent. A simple statement, "Let's have you fix that bike problem that's always bothered you," always got a response and a bike.


There were lots of greasy hands that night, but the MG-1's were available for those who wanted them. (photo credit- Shanai Matteson)



The Park Tool Workstation featured two repair stands and the BKT-1 with tool kilt.   I really enjoy the tool kilt system, it allows you to have easily available the common things needed. The bucket allows for easy transport. Taking a brake apart? Put your parts in the bucket and you wont lose them.



The learning and the work went on as long as the night would allow. This cassette replacement was done mostly by feel, not by sight.   If you plan on being out this late, bring a head light.   The small " spelunking lights" are readily available, and provide an adequate work light.