Memphis Greenline

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Memphis Greenline

Interested in riding the Greenline, but don't know where to start?

Here's a map of all the places you can jump on the Greenline and enjoy one of the best things about living in Memphis. 

memphis greenline map

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Santa Cross

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Santa Cross

Photo by Averell Mondie

Photo by Averell Mondie

Thanks to everyone (people and dogs) who came out to Santa Cross. Santa can't wait to ride it again next year. 

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Choose 901 Video

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Choose 901 Video

Take a peek inside the shop and out on the pump track. We're so stoked that our bike shop is a part of Memphis's rad bike scene. 

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Cranksgiving

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Cranksgiving

Photo courtesy of Nathan W. Berry

Photo courtesy of Nathan W. Berry

Thank you to everyone who came out for the cyclocross race, mountain bike race, kids ride, or after party! All proceeds went to UBFM and the food and love they share.  

Photos courtesy of Daniel Scruggs

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We're Hiring

We're Hiring A Part-time Retail Sales Specialist

retail sales position

We're looking for someone who loves Memphis, high fives, and making sure people have the raddest rides. The position is part-time and will include weekend hours. Previous retail and restaurant experience is a plus. Women and minorities are highly encouraged to apply. 

Send your resume to bikesmithtruck@gmail.com

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Bike Nerd Podcast

Listen To Us Talk Bikes in Episode 13 Of The Bike Nerds Podcast

 

My wife and I sat down with Kyle and Sara to talk bikes, Legos, and falling in love while building bikes. It was awesome. Check it out. 

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Pump Track Party

We're Opening The Pump Track!

Join us on May 14 as we open the pump track. Bring your bike and let's ride!

StickEm food truck will be here and so will Wiseacre with a tent out back serving draft beer. There'll be door prizes and lots of high fives.

And for for you guys new to pump tracks: Pump tracks are fun for every age and every skill level. A pump track is a continuous loop of dirt berms and “rollers” (smooth dirt mounds) that you ride without pedaling. The name “pump track” comes from the pumping motion used by the rider’s upper and lower body as they ride around the track. The idea of a pump track is to use this pumping motion to maintain your speed around the track without pedaling.

RSVP on facebook. 

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Broad Avenue Art Walk

Join us for the Broad Venue Art Walk. 

Join us and the rest of the Broad Avenue Arts District for live music, art, and beer. Most of the shops are staying up past their bedtimes to host exhibits and to have fun. Plus, there'll be live performances at the Water Pavilion and food trucks.

But what we're most stoked about is that we'll be hosting some of Christopher Reyes' projection art pieces. 

Check out the facebook event for more info and updates. 

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Win A Bike

BE THE TOP FUNDRAISER FOR CYCLE THE GREENWAY AND WIN THIS PUBLIC V7

You love the Greenway, so why not win a new bike to ride on it!

The Wolf River Conservancy is holding it's annual Cycle the Greenway ride on June 4th. You can ride 27 miles or 55 miles or just fundraise. Or you can ride and fundraise! And the top fundraiser wins this rad bike we donated, because we love the Greenway, too. 

Want more information on the ride and registration? Check out the Wolf River Conservancy.

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Yoga Class

yoga for bikers and runners

Join us on Wednesdays at 6:30 pm for a yoga class tailored especially for cyclists and runners. The cost is $15 per person. Bring your yoga mat. 

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Memphis Bike Love

Memphis's Inspirational Bike Riders

Every 2 weeks over on the Make Memphis Blog I'm interviewing awesome Memphis bike riders in a series called Gears & Cheers. This town has a lot and I'm excited about the chance to celebrate them. Check out the first installment:  an interview with Frank Rouse of UBFM. An awesome guy who feeds the homeless and spreads Memphis bike love. 

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Is your bike the love of your life?

Presents you can give your bike for Valentine's Day

Your bike is special. Here is a short list of things that you can do for your bike this Valentine's Day.

  • A new gold chain: a new chain can go a long way in extending the life of your entire drive train, saving you from having to replace your cassette or chainrings before their time.
  • A new pair of shoes: replacing worn tires can save you from punctures and make your bike ride safer and more fun. See more info about tire wear
  • A day at the spa: giving your bike a good wash, degreasing your drive train, and lubing up everything after cleaning will not only have your bike looking better, but it will perform better.
  • A night on the town: the best way to show your bike how special it is to you is to spend some quality time with it. Get on and go for a ride!

Happy Valentine's Day!

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Mobile Bike Repair Business

So You Want To Start A Mobile Bike Repair Business: Get A Good Truck

mobile bike repair.jpg

I started running a mobile bike repair shop 2 years ago and after this nice profile, I've received a lot of messages asking me for tips and advice. Since, I'm often asked the same questions, I decided to start writing out what I've learned, starting with the truck. I also started this google+ community as a forum for more questions or discussions. 

I'm a small-local-business type of guy. And my notes speak to that. There are, at least, a couple of mobile bike repair franchises that you can google and become part of, if that is more of what you are looking for. But if you are interested in starting your own mobile bike repair business from the ground up, these notes may help. 

My 18-foot truck

My 18-foot truck

Truck

This might seem obvious, but get a good truck. I've seen a few mobile businesses in town completely de-railed, because they skimped on the truck. If your truck is in your driveway or at your mechanic's, then you can't make any money. It doesn't matter how pretty the paint job or how many tools you have, if you can't get to your appointments or events. Spend a little extra money to purchase a good, working truck rather than a fixer-upper. It'll save you money in the long run.

If you don't already know a lot about box trucks (or whatever type of truck you intend to buy), get a friend or trusted mechanic that does. My father was a Chief Engineer at FedEx and has been an invaluable resource. He helped me figure out what I wanted and needed, as well as drove with me to Kentucky to make sure the truck I was buying wasn't a lemon. 

Budget

There are a few factors in figuring how much you will need to spend on your truck. There is the cost of the truck, of course, the cost of the inside-set up/build-out, the cost of branding design work, and the wrap (or paint job). The branding I'll talk about in another post. It's important and shouldn't be overlooked. And branding and marketing is just one of the many costs you will need to build into your business plan, but for right now I'm just talking about the truck. 

Based on my start-up budget, I bought a used truck. And it's served me well. If you have a large start-up budget, go ahead and buy a new truck (and I'll be jealous of your stereo system),  but in my case I didn't have the budget and didn't need to. As a completely unscientific rule of thumb, I wouldn't recommend buying a truck under $10,000. You may find a truck that rides like a dream for $600 and needs no new parts. But I think that is the exception not the rule.    

Truck Criteria

When you know how much you can spend, you can make a list of your criteria. Below are some things to think about and decide for yourself. 

Do you want diesel or gas? How much driving and what kind of driving do you intend to do?
What size do you want? Would you rather get a large van?
How many repair stands do you intend to fit in it?
Do you want a roll-up door or "barn" doors in the back?
Do you want a window in the side of the truck for customers?
Do you want the whole truck temperature-controlled?
Do you want the roof to be tranlucient for light to come in? If not, what is going to be your light source?
Are you going to need or run a generator?
Do you want an automatic or manual transmission?
What year truck do you want?
How many miles can it  have on it?
How far can you travel to buy it?

You should prioritize this list of criteria, because you might have to sacrifice something lower on your list. So know ahead of time what you can live without.

A word to the wise: I'd avoid buying a truck from a place like U-haul or UPS, since they probably only sell their trucks when all the good truck juice is squeezed out. 

How to Find Your Truck

There are probably as many ways to find your truck as there are trucks. My wife found my truck on the internet, simply by searching the parameters of my criteria. It took her a month, but she found just what I needed. She found it on a site specific to used box trucks, but you can find trucks on ebay and craigslist, and a lot of other places.

A friend with a fashion truck used a family connection to find a truck right outside of town. I was very jealous, since the first time I drove my truck was a 6-hour drive in the snow back from where I bought it.   

And you can buy locally, put the word out, and go see local dealers. Talk to some food truck truck owners, because they tend to know the scoop in town. Again, I would either learn a lot about trucks or bring a friend who does with you to check out a truck to buy.

Allow yourself a lot of time to find the right truck. You need to get a good truck, so this is not a decision you want to make in just a few minutes. Not only is the truck going to be your new workspace, but it is also a giant billboard advertising your new business.

Here is the google+ community to join and keep the conversation going. 

 

 

 

 

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