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12/30/2009: "Chip's At It Again...."
Occasional Bicycle Fixation and New Colonist contributor Chip Haynes of Florida sent in a picture of his latest project--latest of hundreds, since he loves to salvage old bikes, make them into viable transportation, and give them away.

Another Happy RiderIn his own words:
Just finished this bike on Christmas Eve morning and was able to hand it over to its new owner before Santa showed up. The lugged frame began life as a Sears Free Spirit three-speed, and it got The Full Chippie: the bike was stripped down to nothing, and the nothing was stripped down to bare metal. The dropouts were re-formed, the cable housing guides were ground off, holes were filled and the whole thing got rebuilt as a sleek satin black fixie. I even taught the new owner to lace the front wheel. (I did the rear wheel.) Needless to say, the new owner is one happy boy with a shiny new bike, and if you are anywhere in central Clearwater, you'll probably see him fly by. And this bike does fly!

I've built and rebuilt dozens--if not hundreds--of bikes over the years and simply given them away. In this a particular case, the new owner bought the old bike on Craig's List and rounded up the needed parts from several different bike shops and online sources. The build took maybe six weeks total--after he found the right frame. (Finding the right frame took some doing.) My goal is what it always is: To show people that bicycling is more fun than driving a car, and even the simplest bicycle (like this fixie) is an absolute joy. The new owner is really putting this bike to good use every day.

By the way, my current workbench project is the rebuild of a classic (mid-70's) Schwinn Sting Ray I found on a trash pile the other day. This one's a keeper, and I will ride it to work--at least once!
I'll take a thousand more Chip Hayneses over any amount of cap-and-trade greenwash any day.

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