The Latest From

News, Events, Updates

Winterize Your Bike Workshop TONIGHT!

Written by Boston Biker on Nov 21

Just got this, looks like it could be a good time:



Winter is Coming! Prepare by cleaning off the autumn leaves, pumping those tires, and lubing up that chain so you’re ready for the frost season with a finely tuned machine. We’ll cover the basics of bike cleaning and preventative maintenance, and we’ll cover a wide range of topics; from what tires work best in the snow to the best types of home-made fenders to keep that slush off your back. You really can be an all-season rider with the right tips.

Workshop is FREE and OPEN TO ALL, at the Harvard Ed Portal. 175 N Harvard St in North Allston. from 5:30-7pm.

See you there! Bring your bikes, we’re going to get hands-on!


submit Winterize Your Bike Workshop TONIGHT! to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in Mechanical | No Comments »

Why It Is Important To Change Your Brake Pads Once In A While

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 03

So…I sorta waiting too long to change my brake pads over the winter, and ended up grinding down the sidewall a bit (run out of brake pad and you are grinding metal on metal)…several months ago this happened…

download (1)


Whoops…I had been telling myself for weeks to get it fixed, but instead it just EXPLODED while I was riding. So loud that I was deaf for a moment, and people rushed out of their homes to see what had happened. A giant cloud of powder erupted from the front wheel, and getting to a full stop was an effort in control.

This sort of thing can happen at any time, I was standing in downtown crossing and heard a loud BANG, everyone else immediately began to look around, thoughts of Marathon Monday, I am sure, in their minds. But I had heard that sound before, a couple tire pinches later and I found the culprit. Someone had a worn down side wall and BLAMO it just exploded when the tire heated up in the sun (expanding air + worn down side wall = bang!).

Moral of this story, always change your brake pads when you can no longer see the groves in them (or slightly before).

submit Why It Is Important To Change Your Brake Pads Once In A While to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in bostonbiker, Mechanical | 4 Comments »

Creative Fenders

Written by Boston Biker on Jun 11

From Epic:

How are you staying dry out there?

submit Creative Fenders to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in bostonbiker, crafts, Mechanical | 1 Comment »

Behold! Bikes MAKING Ice Cream!

Written by Boston Biker on Apr 30

I am not sure the world can get much better than this…

Now there’s a Los Angeles-based business that sells only pedal-churned ice cream.

After getting a year-long rolling start with a mobile unit, Peddler’s Creamery has just opened a storefront outlet in downtown L.A., where they’re dishing out frozen goodies that are not only made from organic ingredients, but are also processed entirely by human power.

It might sound impractical at first, but according to owner Edward Belden, it only takes about 3-4 miles of pedaling (aboard an old Schwinn bike mounted on rollers) to freeze a 5-gallon batch of Mexican chocolate ice cream, salted caramel non-dairy vegan dessert, or strawberry-basil sorbet. If you’re going at a decent clip, that’ll take about 15 minutes. Belden says it’s no problem, for now, to keep his freezers stocked.

AMAZING! Read the rest here. Also can we get one of these around here, please please please!

Thanks John for the tip.

submit Behold! Bikes MAKING Ice Cream! to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in fun, Mechanical, news | 2 Comments »

Reflecting All The Things!

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 23

Josh over at Bike Safe Boston made this awesome fully reflective “safety” bike a while ago. I am late to the party but still think it is awesome.

This coating is different from anything available on the market today. When headlights hit it, the whole bike glows bright white, making it next to impossible for drivers to miss. I’m convinced that this sort of high visibility technology can save lives and make biking safer and more appealing for everyone. That’s why I joined the company that makes it—I want to be a part of the next frontier of bike safety.

Check out more about this cool tech here.

submit Reflecting All The Things! to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in advocacy, Commuting, Mechanical | No Comments »

How Its Made: Mass Producing Bicycles

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 28

Obviously not all bikes are made this way, but hypnotic to watch. If you know more, leave the links in the comments.

submit How Its Made: Mass Producing Bicycles to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in fun, Mechanical, video | No Comments »

This Is…Holy Crap This Is Amazing

Written by Boston Biker on Apr 09

This has got to be the craziest, most elegant solution I have ever seen to this problem.

This weekend I finally solved a particularly tough chain tension problem that I’ve been having on my winter commuter/guest bike with the addition of a “ghostring” or “ghost ring” or “ghost chainring” (I’m unsure of what the proper name for it is, if there is one). The idea is simple, but when first presented with it any well-seasoned cyclist will surely look askance at the contraption. I’m here to say: so far, so good!


More here.

submit This Is…Holy Crap This Is Amazing to Add to Reddit.

Tags: ,
Posted in crafts, Mechanical | 1 Comment »

Bikes Not Bombs Mega Roundup

Written by Boston Biker on Mar 12

Lots and lots of BNB events, check em out!


Help Load Bikes for Ghana!!!
Bikes Not Bombs will ship our next container to Ability Bikes Cooperative in Ghana! Please join us on Sunday March 18th for the loading at our warehouse in Dorchester – we will start at 10am and will finish around 5pm. Breakfast, coffee and lunch will be provided. (Equal Exchange coffee is generously donated by City Feed and Supply.) This date is tentative! Please check our website to confirm the date in the coming weeks!

Join us at:
Bikes Not Bombs warehouse
c/o Boston ReStore, Inc.
10 Harvard Street
Dorchester, MA 02124

More info and directions to the warehouse

Ability Bikes Cooperative is a micro-enterprise bike shop based in Koforidua, Ghana, that is cooperatively owned and operated by physically challenged people – people who are mobility-challenged that provide increased mobility to able-bodied people through bicycles. In 2008, Bikes Not Bombs helped establish Ability Bikes, and for the last three years Ability Bikes has operated with full independence, receiving bicycle shipments from Bikes Not Bombs, Re-Cycle and Working Bikes Cooperative. Ability Bikes is continually developing improved systems of administration and accounting, refining their business strategy to increase their net profit and building their skills as mechanics and administrators. In 2012, Ability Bikes is expanding the bike shop into the most commercial market in Koforidua, while simultaneously developing new strategies to advocate for other physically challenged people in Ghana.

Movies online!See two short films (8 min and 10 min) on the new BNB website about this project.

Wanted – PC laptop for Uganda

BNB is seeking a PC laptop donation with Windows operating system!

The laptop will be used for our new project in Northern Uganda that uses bikes to provide rural health care delivery for post-conflict recovery. The laptop will be used directly by the project for drafting documents, record-keeping, managing accounts on spreadsheets and basic internet access. The laptop can be slightly outdated, no problem, but needs to be functional. Contact David Branigan, International Programs Director at [email protected]if you are interested to donate a laptop!

Open House at Bikes Not Bombs!

Please join us for an Open House event at the Bikes Not Bombs Hub on Saturday, March 31. At the event you’ll have an opportunity to meet youth program graduates, watch videos about our work, find out about upcoming events, and learn about ways to help out and get involved. You’ll be able to talk with our staff, members of our Board of Directors, and current Bikes Not Bombs volunteers. Bring your bike for a free safety check and stick around for youth-led Earn-A-Bike style group rides to the sugar bowl at Jamaica Pond, leaving the Hub at 2 and 3pm.

Feel free to drop in anytime between 1 and 4pm at the Bikes Not Bombs Hub at 284 Amory Street, Jamaica Plain, MA. Light refreshments will be served.

We encourage you to invite friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors to come along with you, so please spread the word. We hope you can join us! For more information, contact Allie Hunter, Director of Fundraising & Events at [email protected] or 617-522-0222 x106

Enrolling for Spring 2012 Youth Programs

Spring 2012 Earn-A-Bike: March 26 – May 3, 2012 (M-Th, 3:30 – 6:30p)
Spring 2012 Girls In Action: May 7 – June 14, 2012 (M-Th, 3:30 – 6:30p)

Bikes Not Bombs is currently enrolling applicants for the Spring 2012 sessions of the Earn-A-Bike and Girls in Action programs. Earn-A-Bike is a co-ed program and Girls In Action is for girls only.

Both sessions are Mondays through Thursdays from 3:30pm – 6:30pm. In the program you’ll choose a bike in the beginning and learn the skills to not only build it up, but maintain it as well. At the end of the program, once the bike is built, it is yours to take home! Additionally, we go on bike adventures to explore some of the fascinating places Boston has to offer, and look into various environmental awareness topics.

Applications are available online for Earn-A-Bike and Girls In Action.

If you have any questions please contact Elijah Evans, Youth Programs Director, at 617-522-0222 x101 or email [email protected]. Mail or deliver the application and fee to: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory Street Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

Summer 2012 Earn-A-Bike: Application available online.

In Summer 2012 we will run two Earn-A-Bike sessions. The application will be available by March 1st. For now, you can download a flyer at to keep as a reminder or use to spread the word to potential students and parents.

Session 1: July 4 – July 20, 2012 – Mon – Fri 2-6pm each day
Session 2: July 25 – August 10, 2012 – Mon – Fri, 2-6pm each day

Adult Mechanics Course & New Hours at the Bike Shop

Here at the shop, we’re all dreaming of summer sun, mountain biking, and long road rides in short sleeves! We’ve seen an increase in people getting ready for spring by bringing in their bikes for a tune-up. No worries, though – there’s still plenty of room in our schedule for your bike! If you brought your bike in for a tune-up while we were running our winter special, then keep your ears & eyes out because we’ll be announcing our raffle winners in the coming weeks. We have some great prizes to give away, including some bright 2-watt Planet Bike headlights! There are a few helmets, plus an Ortlieb City-Biker bag on big clearance. We don’t think they’ll last long! (There’s a few more Nutcase helmets than pictured.)

Our new spring-summer hoursare now in effect:

Monday 11 am – 7 pm NEW!
Tuesday 11 am – 7 pm
Wednesday 8 am   – 9 pm NEW!
Thursday 11 am – 7 pm
Friday 11 am – 7 pm
Saturday 10 am – 6 pm NEW!
Sunday 12 pm – 5 pm

We know some of you have been waiting for us to announce this — we’ll soon be offering one of our Basic Mechanics Courses. The class will run for five Tuesdays, March 20th through April 17th from 8-10pm, and covers most of what goes into one of our Basic Tuneups. Work on your own bike and learn in the process! The cost is $150, payment required up-front. You can call the shop and pay over the phone with a credit card, or stop by and sign-up in person. They fill up fast, so be sure to give us a call if you want in!

Bike Drives in Bedford, Southbridge, Newton & More!

A bike drive is an event, often organized by a volunteer, to collect bicycles for Bikes Not Bombs. Large drives will sometime bring in over 200 bikes! These drives help us extend our network of bike collection beyond our two locations in Jamaica Plain. If you have a bike to donate, you can always bring it to Jamaica Plain, but if you live further away, then hopefully you’ll be able to find a bike drive that is closer. Some upcoming drives:

  • Iskwelahang Pilipino School Bike Drive in Bedford, MA on March 25th
  • Southbridge Bike Drive in Southbridge, MA on April 14th
  • Newton Bike Drive in Newton, MA on April 15th

Check out a full list of all upcoming bike drives. Want to help bring Bikes Not Bombs’ bike collection to your town? We’d love to have your help to organize a bike drive!


Wild And Scenic Film Festival with award to Bikes Not Bombs Locavore Tasting and Environmental Film Night
Location: 290 Congress Street, Atlantic Wharf
Date/Time: March 31, 6 PM – 10 PM

This evening fundraiser will feature two films from the national Wild and Scenic Film Festival:

  • The Work of 1000
  • With My Own Two Wheels (with features on Bikes Not Bombs’ partners in Ghana and Guatemala)

“e” inc. will present The Children’s Planet Protector Award to the two featured activists, Marion Stoddart, who led a struggle to regain clean rivers, and David Branigan of Bikes Not Bombs, who used the life-changing value of bicycles to create opportunities in Ghana. After the films, the activists and filmmakers will answer audience questions. “e” inc will also host a locavore tasting supper with delicious local food samples from Boston vendors such as Cabot Creamery, Green Gal Catering, and Channel Café. A silent auction and dessert will round out the evening.

Early bird admission discounts are available. Boston Globe subscribers can also receive a Globe-sponsored discounted admission. The event is a fundraiser for “e” inc. Read more online and see the Facebook event page.

EcoFest, March 31, 11 AM – 4 PM
This is an earlier part of the same program that you can attend. EcoFest is a family and youth-focused afternoon of films and environmental activities. More information about the program and Facebook link are the same as above.

Vote for BNB in the Phoenix Poll

Bikes Not Bombs has been nominated as Boston’s BEST LOCAL CAUSE in the Boston Phoenix’s annual readers’ poll!

Cast your vote for BNB and spread the word! You can vote for us once per day!

submit Bikes Not Bombs Mega Roundup to Add to Reddit.

Tags: , ,
Posted in advocacy, education, jobs, Mechanical | No Comments »

The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Bicycles As Part Of A Business Model September 22, 2014
      TweetOver the summer, I read a series of articles written by a member of bicycle advocacy group in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. I was surprised to see how different Philadelphia was in terms of their approach to incorporating cycling into everyday life, … Continue reading →
    • Commonwealth Ave, Phase 2A: “to, through, or around” September 20, 2014
      TweetA lot of bright people have been discussing the upcoming rebuild of Commonwealth Avenue lately, because the city plans to forge ahead blindly with a bad design.  The fundamental issues are these: The city is refusing to even attempt to … Continue reading →
    • The CX-Files September 19, 2014
      Tweet Scenic Hartford, Connecticut was the center of New England cyclocross last weekend. Silk City (also the CT state championships) had a good deal of firepower in the elite race, with Austin Vincent headlining a robust field of very fit-looking … Continue reading →
    • Vehicle Operators Salmoning By Car September 18, 2014
      TweetThe term “salmoning” has become quite popular for describing the act of bicycling the wrong way down a one-way street. Salmon are known for swimming against the tide. They do this because fresh water is required for them to lay … Continue reading →
    • Brookline Asking For Feedback About Idaho Stops September 17, 2014
      TweetIn case you didn’t know, the Idaho Stop is when cyclists are allowed to treat stop signs like yields, and red lights like stop signs.  Idaho was the first to try it out, and more or less its been pretty … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Active Versus Inactive Transportation September 15, 2014
      TweetUntil I started a bicycling blog, I had never really heard of the term “active transportation.” The first time I heard this term, I thought it was rather odd. I didn’t know whether it referred to the fact that one … Continue reading →
    • More Bikes Than Cars September 12, 2014
      TweetTwice in the last two weeks I have been a part of a lovely thing.  While riding to work I look around and see way…way more bikes than cars.   I think it is a product of the lovely riding weather … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • FREE! Bike Hangers With Security Cable’s FREE! September 12, 2014
      TweetHowdy folks, I have roughly 10 Mini Mum Vertical Bike Hangers with Security Cable.     Free to whoever wants one or all of them.  They don’t have mounting screws, but you can get those at any hardware store.   … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • The Role Of Bicycle Tourism In A Community’s Acceptance Of Bicycling September 11, 2014
      TweetBicycle tourism, although growing in leaps and bounds, is not something we think about when advocating for bicycling or bicycle infrastructure. Bicycling is generally seen as a recreational activity or a mode of transportation. Consequently, arguments for its acceptance are … Continue reading →
    • More Coverage Of Side Guards September 11, 2014
      TweetFrom Boston Magazine: ———- In late July, a Hubway cyclist traveling down Massachusetts Avenue in the South End was hit by a city-contracted trash truck as it went to make a right hand turn onto Columbus Avenue. The cyclist survived the accident, … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker