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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Day After...

Ever see one of those Post-apocalyptic, filmed in the California waste, B-Movie, Now cliche' Sci-Fi films.  Where it's meant to portray the desolation of Armageddon, where some poor schlep has survived the devastation only to be shambling aimlessly down some long stretch of sun-parched highway.  A blank, haunted stare on his face.  Wondering why he alone was spared death.  Desperately seeking someone, anyone to share his isolation?
YEP!  It's been one of THOSE days!
OK, maybe not that bad....
but it makes for a GREAT prologue!
Had it not been for the occasional pop-in, I would have begun to wonder if I was starring in a re-make of "Mad Max"!
ANYWAY!
I had a little helper today in the form of my 8 year old, Logan.  He's the easy one.  Plop him in front of a computer (the REAL reason he comes up here) and he'll keep himself occupied.  At least he still talks to me from time to time, so I guess I'm not TOTALLY obsolete!
Also had a visit from Adam.  he came in a hung out for a little while, pretending to sort parts.  When that became to boring he excuse himself, as he was going home early to "change his sleep patterns" so that he'll be able to get in on time tomorrow.
 *cough* *cough* Bull%&$t *cough*cough*
Also had a few Lookie Loo's, but as most are looking for our "Daily bangers" and we are in short supply they shall return!
We also had a visit from a very pleasant and giddy young lady, very excited about the Schwinn Traveler that I have been working on (for far to long) and after a few phone calls came in to grace us with the pleasure of her company, to check up on it's progress.  Well, P K's Schwinn is ready, and waiting so give us a shout in the A of M, it's waiting for you!  And to make every one else drool with jealousy, check out the pic below!  She's a BEAUT!
All right, I have overstayed my welcome here (takes awhile to get the boy pried off the keypad)
I'm History..no I'm Mythology, Oh i don't know what i am...But I'm Outta' HERE!
FULL RE-FURB, RE-PAINT, RE-STORE, SCHWINN TRAVELER!

Hacker in training, and all around good egg, Logan!!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Life in Four Color

It's easy to break it down.
In life their are two types of people.  Audiophiles and Videophiles. 
Simple.  Those who would rather listen to music or those who require video stimulation.  Quite frankly and not to insult either an Audiophile are "leftlobes".  Born of creativity, their minds only require minor stimuli to get the creative juices flowing, whereas the videophile, the "rightlobe" requires more direct input.  In our house things are split rather unevenly.  My wife and elder son are audiophiles, whereas the rest of us would rather plant our hineys and let the idiot box do it for us.  Now that's not to say that we don't do other things to motivate our creativity, oh no!  Logan can be just as happy with a pen and paper creating his own intricate worlds of fantasy, Kaleb will zone out to "music" (if the latest remake of some HORRIFIC be-bop, rapish want-to be could be called "music"), Put some Lego's or a hammer in Owen's hands and he'll keep himself occupied for ours, whilst Rozy follows suit.  Izy just needs a paper towel tube and what ever else she gets her hands on in her travels. And i have been known to crack open a book now and then (try to do it more regularly in OUR house...HA!)
So it may come as a surprise to most of you that as of late, we have no cable in the house.  After years of doing without, when we moved into our new home everyone convinced me to put in cable.  Well that lasted for about three months, until they were finally convinced that with very few exceptions...there's nothing on!  We have NO like for the myriad of trash TV, "real life" shows, and perpetual re-runs of "The nanny"!  Trust me, other than that list there is little more to choose from!
That's when we discovered two entities.  Hulu and Zune.  With a tip of the "Hat of Discovery" to Elijah for the former and Ahmed for the later!  ON-line Directories of almost every movie and TV episode at your finger tips. 
And it is with that, that I talk of 3 shows that represent some of the FINEST story telling I have EVER seen!
USA Network:  White Collar.  A new generations re-make of the classic "To Catch A Thief" (with a little "Mod Squad" thrown in) it's the story of a VERY clever con man, Neil Cafferty who is doggedly pursued and caught (twice) by the equally clever G-man, Peter Burke.  And intertwining back stories and sub-plots, leads Neil to convince Peter to take him into FBI custody and out of the clink, to serve as an "Advisor".  Even though the standard detective fare is there, unbelievably "on-the-target" interpretation of scant info leading to big time arrests, within the confines of 1-episode, it is the sub-plots that keep you enthralled and the undeniable chemistry between the two leads, who clearly care for, and have each others back, at the same time wouldn't trust them as far as they could throw them, makes for some riveting TV!
The Next show is a whole new take on the "Crime-drama" genre.  That is "The Killing" on AMC.  Now at the end of it's first season of 13 episodes, it centers around two cops looking for the murderer of a young girl.  With SO many plot twists, mis-directions, second guesses, and surprises it's daring in it;s attempt to make what appears to be an entire multi-seasonal series on ONE investigation!  In a television landscape where most crimes are solved in one 43 minute episode, this one has taken the risk to flesh out a very talented cast of characters, all with their little peccadilloes, and dark secrets that keeps you guessing!  Any show that can keep you talking and theorizing hours after it's ending, is GOOD TV!!!
Third, and newly discovered by Angela and I, is also an AMC network show, Breaking Bad.  this one is not for the light of heart.  Although DARKLY comical, considering it's premise.  The story centers around Walter White (Bryan Cranston, the father from "Malcolm in the Middle) a recently turned 50, high school science teacher who is diagnosed with an aggressive form of lung cancer.  And through a curious turn of fate, ends up utilizing his knowledge of chemicals to form a partnership with a high-school drop out turned drug pusher to cook Crystal meth.  And not just any meth, the BEST that both dealers and the DEA have ever seen!  Oh, and did I mention that Walters Brother in Law heads up the DEA's task force?  In the first few episode chronicling the duo's first foray into the drug-world is LESS then stellar, and sends Walter spiraling into a world that does not suit his mild manner exterior.  It's so compelling, as to be like a horrendous car wreck, that good taste mandates you respect the victims but can't help but keep taking a peek! Again and again.  I have no like for the drug world, but the characters metamorphosis is SO engaging that Angela and I sat through all of season 1 in one sitting last night (OY, were we tired this morning!)
So definitely call up Zune on your google, and give 'em all a Looksie!
On to the day!

Monday, June 27, 2011

"It's a Small World After All...."

As that annoying tune rings in my head inspired by the influx of exchange students to our fair state.  And GOD LOVE 'EM!!!  Heaven knows we do!  Yes folks, I'm not so worldly as to be able to tell you what countries they hail from, but they have been keeping us runnin'!  YAY!!  Seems the word got out that we not only sell bikes CHEAP, but that when they are done with them and head back home, they can sell them back to us, regardless of condition at 50%!!  Yep!  They know a good thing!  For what you would have to pay to rent one "elsewhere" for a DAY (there words, not ours) they can keep 'em as long as they need 'em!  Had five more pop in today.   So the guys pulled together and banged two out for them, and we are working on more~!  keep 'em coming!
We include the pic's below, cause hey, they worked hard to get 'em done.  Also finished up a nice full re-build on a hybrid Schwinn, but sorry, before you start drooling...it's sold as well!  We do however have our "easy-on" masculine make-over, in the form of a gorgeous 5speed touring bike!  What's a "Masculine Make-over you might ask?  Well I'll tell ya!  We figured out a long time ago that as we are the retiree capital of the world there are many gents out there, in the Autumn of their lives with still some "Spring" in their step!  And they still want to ride!  More power to 'em!  But as even I can attest, you may be young at heart some parts of us don't work as well as they once did, and it's easier for some of us if our bike has a low step over, IE: no top bar!  What would have been considered a "girls" bike!  Well to eliminate the stigma associated with a man riding a girls bike, we take some of the old ladies touring bikes and re-furb and re-paint them in masculine colors!  VIOLA!  Instant comfort and safety!  So check it out!
So with that, I'd best get my toucahs in gear!
NIGHT!
DAILY BANGER SPECIAL
SOLD

CLASSIC STYLE TOURING
$120.00

DAILY BANGER SPECIAL
SOLD

SUPERB SCHWINN HYBRID
SOLD

Mike Brady's Law

Let the buyer beware.
Last Friday had a gent visit us after a series of phone calls, as he was looking for an inexpensive bike as transportation.  Hey!  That's what we're all about.  However we didn't have anything in the price range he was looking for.  Hey, it happens!  Often times the cheaper "Daily banger Specials" are the first to go, and at the time of his visit the cheapest we had was $70.00.  So after much negotiation, and our inability to cut the price of our bikes in half, he called on another add from Craigslist.  He traveled to pinellas Park and picked up the bike that was $10.00 cheaper then the one he looked at here.  OK.  That's cool.  If it had worked out to his advantage.  Sadly, it did not.  He came back this morning.  Here's where I have to step in and let his mistake be a lesson to all.  If you're not quite sure about the mechanics of a bicycle, I will give you some pointers, a check list that we use when buying bikes.  First check crank;  grab crank arms and give them a wiggle.  Any play?  if their is, it's potentially bearing issues (NOT GOOD!)  check front and back wheels, wiggle left and right.  Any play?  if so, same problem (NOT GOOD!) Also, spin wheels and check the true, any left to right movement, MAY be able to true, but if it has a flat spot (in the WHEEL, not the tire, plan on replacing it (EXPENSIVE!) Now lets check the drive system, easiest way, take it for a drive.  Shift gears up and down (One click at a time, Mr Pricellie!) any hesitation, do you have to double click to get it to move?  Could be a minor adjustment, could also be a bent cage on your  derailleur!  If the later...NOT GOOD!  Brakes;  Any squealing?  check the rubber on the shoe, dried and crack?  Minor re-pair, think about $6.00 a set. Then check frame.  Look at the points of weld, any cracks?  If so, in most case consider it totalled, the bike is now scrap for parts.  Some bikes can be re-welded, but that's an expense best left for higher-end vintage bikes.
Well unfortunately our young friend did not heed this advice, and it has cost him.  After spending a day of traipsing about to save $10 bucks, he rode the bike for 15 minutes, only to have the tire blow out.  Visiting another bike shop it cost him $55.00 to replace the rear tube and tire.  Once again on his way he got about 2 miles when his rear hub gave way.  Haven't seen one go THAT bad in quite some time.  Needless to say, these were not the only problems this bike had.  Bent rear, derailleur, chain to small, rusted cables, rear brake arm bent...and we are still rebuilding it.  OY!   My wife always says, I like to say "I told you so" but in cases like this, I feel compelled to save as many folks from a similar (and all to common) fate.
Allright!  Enough salt in the wound!  This weekend was not as busy as one would hope.  Did not do anywhere NEAR as much buying as we usually do, although we did get a MARVELOUS truck load of misc parts, and a couple of frames.  Chief amongst them a NICE Old School Schwinn "Traveller" that will be going in my bin ASAP!  Also got a nice Mongoose rebel BMX in a trade-up, and that one didn't hardly last an hour before she was gone!
Now Sunday's are the "Fundays" around here!  Why?  Because Angela's here and not me.  I swear at times I can hear them prancing about serving up their rendition of  "The Wicked Witch Is Dead!".  So needless to say, a little more goofiness prevails!  This Sunday was NO exception!  As Angie and our (still at home) eldest were running the show.  Chip came into retrieve "Underdog" when Elijah commented that he had not gotten a chance to try it out.  Chip being the ever-gracious individual said "SURE! try it out" (I'm paraphrasing) Which he did.  Well....APPARENTLY The police officer cruising through the parking lot didn't see him....
Yep.  Thankfully it was not a MAJOR collision, more like a grazing.  The first officer apparently was incensed, however the SECOND officer on the scene, calmed him down and thought that the Prone was "cool"!  CRISIS AVERTED!!! 
ANywho...
I suppose I should motivate myself to function. 
Y'all have a great day and come on down and pay us a visit!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

And comin' 'round the back stretch....!

Friday was like the Kentucky Derby's long shot.  Started out slow,  but finished strong!  Many re-pairs came in within the last two hours of the day, and thankfully we were able to get 'em out before close.  All except one.  The folks were waiting on a cab for their dinner reservations and will pick up today.  Thought we had it in the bag until we tried to true the rear wheel which WOULD NOT cooperate.  so had to clean and re-place the rear single speed!  Se' la vie!
Had a very nice lady come in for an estimate on a bike she had just picked up from a pawn shop down the road (AHHHHHHHHHHHH! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!) Seems it was a little "wobbly".  Well that was due to the fact that the crank bearing's and wheel bearings were shot, the brake and gear cables were rusted solid, the left gear shifter was cracked, the seat was broken and the tires were dry rotted.  Hmm?  Well upon informing her of the cost to repair it all, she (wisely) decided to return the bike for her money back, and buy the Murray that we had here when she got back.  So a little while after leaving here I sent Adam out on the Murray to test her out and make sure everything was AOK!  As fate would have it she was walking back up to the shop as he rode out and came in quickly afraid we had sold it!  So cute!
The enthusiastic young couple who had bought the Fuji came in and picked up the Bottecchi, as it was FINALLY done.  I do so HATE waiting on parts!  But they are very happy and ready to ride together!
We did some buying yesterday and are in the process of prepping the last of them, and as the whining call of the grinder informs me it is time to get my keister to work!'
Peace!


LADIES 7-SPEED COMFORT CRUISER
ONLY $75.00!!!


Thursday, June 23, 2011

I am Blessed With Work!!!

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!!  to all the wonderful folks that kept me hopping today!  I say me, as somehow all my erstwhile compatriots decided to once again not show up!  Ah well, there loss is my gain!!  Teaches them to sleep in! 
Seriously though, it was great fun keeping me on my toes and busy!  Bless you!  Also Thanks to Cindy for coming in to visit and pick up the Schwinn we put out last night.  And for bringing us two NEATO trades!  A Dahon, old school folding bike and FINALLY a Unicycle (the other one we have is thrashed!)  I know, specialty item, but it's cool to have at least one!  And hiddey ho to Ebony and her crew, and we hope you enjoy the Roadmaster!  And Ron a VERY astute gentleman, who upon seeing the Trek 820 KNEW it was a great deal for an Even greater bike, and even though he couldn't get his son off the computer long enough to come see it...he bought it anyway!   Appreciate your father young man!
I did manage to get two built amidst the flurry, I do include both below but sorry, the road bike sold even before finished, but she's so pretty I HAD to include her!  ALSO, the Diamondback?  O....M....G!!!!  I road tested this thing...LORD!  I was half way down the parking lot, in high gear and I must a been doing 40!  EFFORTLESSLY!!!  I don't do it often, but if this one doesn't sell by Sunday...shes coming home with me!
Frickin' SAH-WEET!!!!
All right I DO have to get moving as today (I can't believe the time went by SO fast) is Izabella's FIRST birthday!  WOW!  And even though the party is Sunday, we do cupcakes after dinner, and I'm holding it up!
2007 Diamondback edgewood
ONLY $180.00!!
ISN'T SHE THE CUTEST LITTLE THING!
ONLY $60.00!!!

IS SHE SWEET OR WHAT?

 NIGHT!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Well look at YOU!

Anthony was in rare form today!  Squirrled away in his own little corner, grinding and sanding away, he put out a GORGEOUS full re-paint, re-furb on a vintage Murray Cruiser in Fire Engine Red!  What a ROD!  He also banged out a 24" Diamondback, real slick looking.  I managed another hybrid and as is custom i will be posting a pic of it, but sadly it has allready sold (this one didn't make it off the rack before it was gone!) also put out a very nice ladies bike.  If this bike was a blind dat she would be touted as having "A GREAT personality"  A little nick here and there, but otherwise "solid Stock"  (as I like to refer to my lovely wife)  JUST KIDDING"  Please save the men bashing hate mail! 
ANYWAY! 
Thanks to all the visitors today!  And loved answering all your questions.  And as always we are Blushing with all the kudos!  And to the folks who (finally) came in to pick up repairs, THANKS!  We were about out of room to exhale!  Also Sold the Schwinn OC, to a lovely lady who KNEW what she wanted!  And other then that we  slaved away in the sweat shop makeing some nice goodies!  Check 'em out below!
Good night y'all!

FULL RE-FURB HYBRID
SOLD

SUPER HOT SEXY VINTAGE MURRAY CRUISER!
ONLY $165.00

RUGGID LITTLE GUY!
ONLY $70.00!!


THE "AIRES K" OF SCHWINN BIKES!
SOLID AND ONLY
$65.00!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

just once more

LADIES CRUISER
ONLY $60.00

2005 TREK 820
ONLY $175.00!!!
Thanks to all the folks for their positive reaction from the signage!  I'll be quick as i'm runnin' late!  Here's the goodies out today!

The Terrible Tues!

All right, so it's not THAT bad!  Tuesday's just have a history of being real busy for the first couple of ours then PLOP....nothing!  Not that we don't have PLENTY to keep us busy...OH YES!  Still have all the other goodies to work on PLUS picked up a ladies  Ocean Pacific cruiser, AND a SAH-WEET Trek 820, the newer one!  That one will be out today!  Also, TA DUM DUM DAHHH!  We have SIGNAGE!!!  Yes folks that's right now, no one will be able to say "we must have drove right by you!"  Oh No!  John, of "John For Signs" is as we speak creating some very awesome window art!  THIS is the type of guy we LOVE dealing with.  A local artisan, working out of the back of his pick-up, one man working hard to make a living without gouging the bajeebuzz out of the "other" little guy's!  Trust me, we looked around.  Got quotes from some of those "Other" big sign makers dotting the landscape, and no disrespect to them, mind you, as I'm sure at one time they were the little guy, but they got busy, and pricier and must have forgotten where they came from.  As example, john is charging us a third of what these other place charge for for a 2'X3' sign, and he's HAND PAINTING the whole window!  Need work done?  Call (813) 244-0598, let 'im know we sent ya!
All right, I guess I better get my fanny in gear and get some more work done!  Lunch break is over!
DON'T WE LOOK ALL PROFESSIONAL LIKE!
YOU'D THINKS WE WAS ALL RESPEKTIBLE LIKE!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Henry Ford, Eat your heart out!

(Even though Henry Ford DID NOT invent the assembly line, he's who everyone THINKS did it)
But that's beside the point!  Today was a fantabulous flurry of productivity and the pic's below are the proof!  We also got in some more goodies, and will have them out and ready tomorrow!  Also, Special Thanks to all the great folks coming in to drop off their re-pairs, and even to the lady who called, as she was confused as to where her husband had brought her bike for re-pairs, thinking it was us, then couldn't figure out why he brought it somewhere else!  Thanks for the compliment!  Angela was in briefly today as  had to hit the suppliers and sold the Schwinn Ranger to a VERY excited young man who couldn't believe it was ONLY $95.00!!  See, told you!  Also the wonderful lady who bought the Fuji ladies bike yesterday came back in with her son, and he grabbed up the Diamondback we put out as well.  Thank you very much mam!!  We love filling up families garages!  I am looking forward to the day when garages are filled with bikes and the CARS are in the back yard gathering weeds and rust!
Heh Heh!
And yes Angie and I did go to the Green Lantern, I decked out in Elijah's Fathers day gift, a bright emerald green "Lantern" T-shirt!  AND WOW!  Talk about eye candy!  That Ryan Reynolds is easy on the eyes!  (whoop, did I say that out loud!) Seriously, the movie was gorgeous!  My only complaint would have to be, that DC movies, seem to build up fast then have the slow points that seem to stall the film, then they go back to the action, but other then that, I am still impressed.  And there are DEFINITE Spielbergian moments that make you shout out and Cheer!  And Remember, I can't stress it enough you MUST stick around for the credits, as they are DEFINITELY setting up a sequel!
OK, Now I gotta 'git~!

Peugeot origin
only $115.00

MENS 26" "DAILY BANGER SPECIAL!"
ONLY $65.00

ONLY THE STRONG OF HEART NEED TRY!
ONLY $40.00

GORGEOUS SCHWINN!!
MENS MTB
ONLY $95.00!!

24" SCHWINN bANGER!
ONLY $45.00!!

CLASSIC MURRAY MENS MTB
ONLY $70.00!!

YES!  iT CAN BE RIDDEN! FAST AND FUN!  bUT NOT BUILT FOR MY TALL FAT ASS!

the Morning After The day that was tommorow, yesterday

And I'm my own Grandpa!
Cryptic?
Only because I spent yesterday, Fathers day with my feet up reading ALOT of Alan Moore!  I refer you to my latest infatuation with the Amazon book dept!
ANYWAY!
Had our Monday Morning visit from Chip, who has been gracious enough to leave us Underdog for a few days to show off!  He did in fact remove the toe clips and i took it for a spin around the parking lot.  As it was built for his diminutive stature it is somewhat cramped for me, but still rideable.  the biggest challenge is definitely keeping your feet on the pedals.  As you are "prone" to ride with the center of your feet, you cannot on this bad boy, gotta use your toes!  Also, Chip who is always pimping us and our web site has given us some feed back.  Seems some folks are put off, or "scared" of us do to our "Family Photo".  Kind of Manson Family meets Brady Bunch.  We are not THAT weird.  True the family dynamic is a tad bit, unconventional, we are not mass murderers or anything (and any evidence to the contrary is totally circumstantial, and without merit and could not hold up in court...The luminol found NOTHING!  (hydrochloric acid and an old cast iron tub))  When that photo was taken it was part of a four hour photo shoot.  the Photographer directed us to NOT SMILE!  He was apparently going for the old school, turn of the century portrait.  You know, when it was "undignified" to smile.  And no, my wife doesn't always scowl like that, usually only when she deals with me, oddly enough. Go figure!  So have no fear, when dealing with our happy little, care free group!  Where every day, is a Holiday!
Yep...Pullin' up the waders!
SO.
As you are all well aware yesterday was Fathers Day, and as usual, Angela broke with custom, and gave me gifts of the store bought nature. Got a cool DVD collection of DC flicks!  As well as a new ring.  She wanted it to replace my wedding band (as when we originally got married all we could afford were simple silver bands, and even though I have since upgraded hers, I refuse to remove my original) but instead it now adorns the other ring finger.  They are very cool, mind you, but I prefer the home made kind.  The kids did a very creative job with their cards, and Owen made me a cool hand crafted action figure.  Hard to describe, kind of a super Teddy Bear, with spoons for arms, and the caps for visine bottles as boots, with a dried baby wipe for a cape!  Very Creative!   
Well, today look like we may have all hands on deck (surprisingly) we might be able to get some new goodies out! 
TTFN!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Before we go...

Green Lantern AWAITS!!  But before I take your leave for the day I leave you with the two Didi's we put out today, and a special thanks to Dieu Tran who promptly responded to my plea for help in regards to our AC on Craigslist, and drove 45 minutes to help us out!  We are starting to be able to breath again!
y'all have a GREAT night!!

FULL RE-FURB SCHWINN RANGER 2.6
ONLY $95.00!!!

FULL RE-FURB/PAINT 3-WHEELER
ONLY $165.00!!

Its a wonderful day in the neighborhood....

Would you my,
 could you be my,
 won't you be...my neighbor!
Allrighty-roo!  What a FANTABULOUS day.  Granted, we are STILL having AC issues, but I'm persevering.  I say I, as apparently my erstwhile compatriots have not seen fit to arrive (if at all) yet.  They have been rather flaky of late, and my lovely wife is tending the home fires, whilst attempting to "encourage" the children to clean their ever growing messes.  I refer you to the inevitability of disastrous consequence met by the languishing doldrums of the summer vacation!
IE;  Kids get bored.  Kids find things to destroy.
Remember summers when WE were kids?  I don't know about anyone else, but growing up in the 70's, The "Brady Bunch" not withstanding, my parents didn't take two months off in THEIR busy schedules to ensure that I and my sister were entertained.  Oh sure the occasional Sunday we'd go to Kingston Lake to canoe, with a side trip to Bolton's for a Burger and the BEST FREAKIN' onion rings...EVER! I think once or twice we went to Canoby (sp?) Lake Park (where swimming out to the boulder was forbidden...but attempted!)  And the occasional tryst to downtown Boston (where my enduring LOVE for that city began and perseveres to this day!) But other then that each day we were left to our vices, as were all the other (few) neighborhood kids.  You got up, had your breakfast gave a quick goodbye to mom, and then promptly disappeared!  Not to bee seen again until the twilight hours approached, and you knew that you were do back home.  Even in the densely wooded, rural neighborhood of Brentwood, NH (now so GROSSLY overdeveloped with stately overpriced homes) you knew you were late when the relative silence was broken by the drifting calls of "Dinnertime!" alighting from various kitchen doors.  We did everything from bikes, to rock skipping at the rivers edge, suicide run from the sandpits rim (DO NOT try and turn your handlebars going down THAT hill) tree climbing...Speaking of tree climbing!  Here's a fun game to try next time you're up North!  Can't do it down here, as you don't have Birch trees.  Very abundant in New England!  Did this all the time as kids.  It;s called "Deadmans Swing".
First find a young birch tree, not to big around  and maybe 15 or so feet high (Oh you need a few people to play this game. 
Grab a rope or cord, has to be strong then climb up the tree and tie the rope (GOOD) a few feet from the top.
Throw rope down to your compatriots and hug the tree REAL GOOD from just below where you tied off the rope, and have them pull the tree as far down to the ground as they can (RE:  HOLD....ON.....TIGHT!)
At the count of three....they simultaneously let go of the rope!
Did I mention, HOLD ON TIGHT!  See how many times you can ride the tree back and forth without getting thrown off!!
2 pointers.
Don't have them pull tree ALL the way down, as I said, tree's can be VERY springy, and with your added weight SOME will spring all the way to the other side to the same level.  Imagine a HUGE fly swatter....and you're the fly (trust me...It'll knock the wind outta ya, and make you walk funny for a week!)
Also.  Be sure the direction the tree is pointing in is relatively clear, and provides the possibility (if necessary) of a soft landing.  We usually did it during the winter, and aimed a snow drift!
This is also a fun game to play with the annoying neighborhood kid.  You know, the one who knows everything and won't stop bugging everyone.  The secret is have him go first, and tell him to aim for the snowbank.  Also rename the game "Catapult"  Not that I ever did such a rotten thing...*snicker*
ANYWAY! 
Yesterday was a fun (albeit HOT) day! Put out only 1 new goodie though.  But it's a PEACH!  Also met MANY new and wonderful folks!  Special shout out to Victor, and his lovely friend who came in here after being re-fered to us by "another" bike shop.  Seems they brought in the bike (pic below...the aforementioned PEACH) to them seeking re-pairs, and upon realizing they would have to pay the price for a NEW bike to get that one fixed, or take out a small loan to BUY a new bike there, asked if they new of anyone selling used bikes.  Which blessedly brought them here.  Upon seeing the Dawes, they fell in love and traded the Diamondback to boot!  Thanks for all the kind words and swell (after CONSIDERABLE re-build ) new addition to our showroom!  Mario and Ron, a couple of "Old School" blokes came in, and after a comedy of errors (and some agitation by yours truly) in re-gards to the Iron Horse we had out that CLEARLY shouldn't have been considered "done" , they settled upon (or rather made the better choice) for the Schwinn Cruiser we had.  Thanks SO MUCH gentleman for your patience and understanding!
As the day wained on (and my ankle throbbed) I had to temporarily abandoned the next project I had in my bay to limp home, shower and rest.  Unfortunately I missed meeting Jim from Tampa.  A very enthusiastic young man, who had called me three times over the last week, VERY interested in the Vintage Western Flyer and as he could not get away from work until yesterday, wanted to make sure we still had it.  I am glad he was able to get it, as I know it has gone to a good home to someone who appreciates its significance and uniqueness!  And as a bonus we got a really nice Bottecchia Road Bike in trade!  Which he'll be happy to know has already been sold (pre-rebuild) to a young couple who came in first thing this morning, as well as buying the Fuji Ace, with thanks to Chip!  Chip happened to be in here to visit, and do some horse trading, just after opening, and as I HAD to go next door to get my morning infusion of caffeine, manned the shop for me.  Seems they came into look, and being Chip educated them on the bikes.
Had a pleasant visit and FINALLY got to meet Underdog, and more importantly RIDE IT!  No where near as difficult as I had anticipated, however, the toe clips he fabricated for it, although an understandable addition, quickly proved a hindrance as I could not get them over my shoes.  BUT, he will be removing them and I hope to try it again soon!
All right, I have blathered enough, and aside from mentioning that tonight....Green Lantern!!!  I bid you a fond farewell!
Fully Re-furbed Diamondback Outlook
ONLY $150.00!!!

UNDERDOG!!
TO THE LEFT, THE DESIGNER AND CREATOR OF SAID BIKE, CHIP!!!  NOTICE THE WISE ALMOST SAGE-LIKE VISAGE.  YOU CAN SEE THE WISDOM, AND WORLDLY EXPERIENCE IN HIS EYES, YET WITH A GLINT OF CHILDLIKE ABANDON!  and TO THE RIGHT, READ THE WHIMSY AND JOY IN MY SMILING EYES AS I LOOK UPON THIS MASTERFUL CREATION!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Im melting....MELTING!!!

AC conked out...AGAIN.  Bloody temperamental antique!  And sadly, as it's warm in the Dungeon, we didn't even notice until Angela brought it to our attention.  By then it was 96 degrees up front.  So now, fixed AGAIN, we have to wait for it to drop down.  Needless to say I got a bit...cranky.  Me and heat...not a good combo!
Anyway!
Got two done and out today.  The Robin Hood, looking dashing, as if ready to bring the Vicca' to market!  I was very happy when we were able to save the seat!  David and Dee should be happy with the life breathed back into her!
Also, picked up a SAH-WEET 50cm Fuji Ace, that we stripped down, and re-furbed!  This one looks MEAN!
Sold the Roadmaster Daily Banger to one of our regulars that picked up a BMX last week, on their way to fitting out the whole family!  Have fun, y'all.  And The Mongoose XR-75 Tony put out yesterday didn't last the morning!
Thanks to the fine Gent who brought us the truck load of kids bikes, and entertained us with tales of the 60's and 70's, as apparently shops like us dotted the landscape of this area!  Even one right smack dab in the now defunct downtown Clearwater area!  Thanks for the wonderful compliments sir!  We love the recognition that we are reinventing the wheel...as it were.!
And as further proof that I am a true slave driver, check out the pic's below of my erstwhile, willing to please employees below hard at work!
Have a good night y'all!
PERFECT FOR RIDING THE ROLLING HILLS OF FLORIDA
ONLY $115.00

FASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSST
fUJI ACE
ONLY $145.00!!


Its Summer Time (or; "Why am I being woken up at 6.30 am by yelling?")

Ah, summer time.  A blissful time of wistful walks on grassy knolls while delightfully happy children prance merrily about the flowers.  Blanketed picnics, accompanied with wine, and delicate cheeses as gentle tones wisp upon the breeze of pleasant conversation.
ah...yea! (insert sarcastic tone)
Who invented summer vacation anyway.  Seems somewhat unnecessary nowadays.  (of course when my generation attended school, it was much harder, more work, we deserved a break *snicker*) I say, make 'em go all year round, until there 16 and then emancipate them before they get REALLY annoying!
Seriously.
(OK, not so much)
It is true, however that having them around, whilst a pleasant experience for my wife (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA) it gives me pause to feel like a heel.  During the school year, for the most part my wife and eldest son have the thankless task of getting the little ones up, dressed and to school by the ungodly hour of 8 am.  Quite frankly, I was under the impression that the Universe did not  materialize until roughly 9.30am, when I awoke.  I was grossly misinformed!  During the school year, once I have awoken, the remainder of the house has gone back to bed and i am allowed the luxury of a quite morning of coffee and reflection, a pause to plan the course of my day.  As it should be, being the man of the house and all.
NOW, as I stumble over the vast chasm between the bedroom and coffee pot, I have several bright eyed and bushy tailed youngsters DYING to talk to me.  As any sane adult knows, you cannot carry on any coherent conversation with someone PRIOR to them having imbibed sufficient levels of caffeine.  Children (an un-abating source of continual jubilant energy) have yet to discover this reality.
So as I said i feel like a heel, as I half heartily responded to the inquiries, drawings, plans, relevance of future events, there theories considering the importance of Butter in peanuts? ETC. ET all, ad naseum!
They quickly come to realize that "Daddy's not really listening" resulting in various results, all verging on disappointed.  Hence that parental feeling of "I really don't want to dis' my kids, but I have to get motivated and to work"  with the inevitable, reoccurring thought of "I'll make it up to them!"
(this is where you insert the tune "Cat's in the cradle")
YUP!  Feel like a heel.
On the upside though, at least Mom's there and as much as they all kid around they know they are loved, even the obnoxious, teenagers who revel in the fact that they are both now bigger then mom and dad.
I have climbed atop the "Tower of Babel"!
ANYWAY!  Thanks to Chip for his weekly stop by, and confab.  The "Underdog" is a triumphant success and he has promised to bring it by so I can kill myself, I mean RIDE it, soon!  I also enjoyed hearing the inside scoop on his latest novel, I WON'T give away any spoilers, save to say it would seem a very clever use of recently outdated technology for the back drop of an interesting mystery!
Cryptic?
I think successfully so!
Also it was interesting in hearing the fascinating path that "Clearwaters oldest Schwinn Shop" took. I think THAT story would make an interesting novel as well!
Well yesterday seemed to go rather well, although i was not here.  No in fact there were no broken bones, although I think the term "hemotoma" sounds worse then fracture!  But it's not.  And, for all you sick little monkeys who expressed curiosity as "How Bad Is IT?"  Check out the pic below.  CAUTION, not for the faint of heart!
Today promises to be a humdinger, as Angi and the crew picked up a plethora of goodies yesterday, and I have so far today snagged a SWEET Fuji road bike!  So enough yakkin' off to the salt mines!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Babies day out!

Classic movie.
However, we're talking about me now!  Got a hair across my craw yesterday, as I have become tired of tripping over projects (and bodies) in the Dungeon to convert the paint booth (which in fact has been used as storage for nigh on a hundred years now) into a work bay.  Well first things first.  As it was litterly piled with sh....tuff, we had to do a house cleaning.  Some back to the garage but most scraped out.  And after bringing them to the garage, we found alot there that could just be scrapped out as well.  when all was said and done, Jose's truck was QUITE full.  And i got to take my first trip to the scrap yard.  OK, maybe not my first trip, but defiantly my longest!  As we had both dirty metal and aluminum, we had to wait for the ferrous metal scales to be ready, as the state just HAPPENED to be there testing the scales.  It did, however afford me the opportunity to witness a microcosm of activity quite fascinating.  Almost symphonic in there movements, with a touch of whimsical nostalgia, I watch them work.  As every aspect of humanity seem to frequent this small outcropping of dirt, sitting within a grove of trees, marking what lays past the dead end street, amongst the apparent order of stations, sat the HUGE pile of dirty metal.  As one lone crane swayed back and forth, hungrily grasping its mead, to then regurgitate it into the awaiting trailer.  As this continued unabated, everything from a Mercedes with an old washer jutting from the trunk, to be unloaded by a shirt and tie with sleeves rolled up, to a grizzled sun bleached old man, towing a makeshift cart behind a well worn bicycle deposited their (or others) refuse onto the ever increasing pile.  I was reminded of my days as a young teenager, working in my landlords junkyard, driving the "cutting" cars, as I watched a father and son, with what appeared to be the rear 2/3 of some car strapped to the back of a small pickup attempting to deposit it by doing the Redneck Slide.  To the uninitiated, this is where you remove the straps and back up towards the pile real fast and hit the brakes, and let inertia do the rest.  it took three tries, until the attendants assisted.  Made me wonder how they got the bloody thing on in the first place.
It was a very enlightening brake from my norm.
ANYWAY!
yesterday was quite productive otherwise.  After picking up some more goodies, we all got on them real quick.  Heaven knows we needed them!  And put out 3 more peaches.  The Old School Robin Hood I had promised to have out is all but done, save the seat.  Worked late on it until last last night at which point I realized I had none that would do it credit, so I'm in the process of trying to repair the old one. 
BUT, as fate would have it, my little "accident" of last Saturday, may not have been as benign as I had first thought, and I am now preparing to ONCE AGAIN visit the ER, to make sure I in fact did not brake something.
Se' la vie.
BUT, everyone else is here, so COME ON DOWN
"DAILY BANGER SPECIAL"
$65.00

"DAILY BANGER SPECIAL"
$55.00

LADIES 26" FUJI MTB
ONLY $110.00!!

AND IMAGINE THIS, TO THE TUNE OF MY NAME, BEING REPEATED BY MY ANNOYING EMPLOYEES AND YOU HAVE AN IMAGE OF MY DAY!
video

Monday, June 13, 2011

Please file under "to stupid to live"

That will probably Adorne my headstone. 
Bright side:  Had a wonderful series of excited phone calls from a wonderful lady from Tampa today.  She has been looking for a road bike that will fit her demure size, and has been searching high and low, in and around her area.  As with so many of us today she is working within a budget.  And until today, everything she has located so far was well OUT of that budget.  Until she discovered us.  As it turns out, Adam was in the process of restoring an older Fuji ladies road bike we got from one of our more proliferate scrappers last week, and it was the perfect size, as well as being lightweight cro-moly with aluminum components. Well the excitement didn't stop there.  As Adam was hitting a couple of walls getting it done, I stepped into assist and we double teamed it to get it done in time.  She arrived about a half hour to early, but was very pleasant in her repose, and her and her daughter hung around the plaza to "get into trouble" as we worked. She was quite charming as she expressed her joy in our being here, and to use her own words "this is the coolest store, EVER!" 
WOW.  We are honored! 
She further expressed bewilderment as to why there are not more shops like this around.  Well we have our theories as to why that is, derived from the info we gather from various other dealers and bike groupies.  Seems you can't do what we do.
????
And you can't make money at it.
?????
Well, where it's true we will never get rich, at least we can pay our bills.  And nowadays that IS something to be VERY thankful for!
But, as to the "Stupid" part.  Working on the bikes requires one to on occasion (or more often then not) squat.
Apparently I had forgotten my injury.  But upon standing back upright, I WAS reminded!
OY!
Apparently my dim wittiness has seep into my nerve endings and ceased all communication with the receptors in my brain.
Either that, or I have been sniffing to much paint fumes!
ANYWAY!
Another fantastic day has blessed us.  The lonely Huffy "Daily Banger" that has been sitting here FAR to long finally found a home with a weary traveler, recently suffering from (or benefiting from.  depends how you look at it) from catastrophic vehicle failure.  Dressed in what seemed a very uncomfortably warm shirt and tie, he needed to make it to work on time, and was none to happy at the prospect of walking the distance, so we cut him a deal and sent him off happy.
Gentleman came in looking for a brake for his BMX, and realized that we had one similar to what he had, and the whole bike was cheaper then ordering a new brake set.  So he rode off with it and can use the other one for spare parts!  And just as we opened a young man being rewarded for finishing Job training picked out the Old School Mongoose we had out!  Way to go, man!
And to all the re-pairs we serviced today, thanks to all, as usual for your trust!
And we got some Humdingers of sweet buys today.  The tippest toppest being the swEET Dawes Hybrid you see below!  Well worth the scratch I laid out!
Well, i am back to work as I want to help Anthony finish up HIS Fuji before I leave!
NIGHT!
SUPER-SWEET, SUPER-CLEAN,
LIKE NEW
DAWES, HYBRID
ONLY $230.00!!!

Big Tree 1: Rider 0

History Shows,
again and again,
How nature points out,
the folly of man.

Truer words have never been sung.  Thank you B.O.C, for the inspiration.
Well, ever trying to grasp my youth, in a euphorically "out-of-charcture" way, Saturday night I spontaneously decided to ride the clown bike home from work.  Mind you I was quite sure of myself, as I built the bloody thing and have only fallen off once, in the almost four years I have had it.  So the impending disaster was not even a brief forethought.
Setting the scene;  Our shop sits at the top of a minor hill, at the crossroads of Sunset, and North Highland.  Traveling North on Highland away from the shop you are going downhill, into a basin which then goes back up.  Our house sits on the WEST side of the street, now. Just above the bottom of the basin.  our OLD house, the one I am more accustomed to going to (even still) sits on the EAST side. I had originally pruned the overhang to avoid colliding with it when riding the nearly 9 foot tall (at the top of the handle bars) bike.  Needless to say as I have not ridden the bike in some time, I have yet to have pruned the rather LARGE tree that sits in our front yard, overhanging the sidewalk.  This would not have been a major issue had I been PAYING ATTENTION as I rapidly approached it on the down sloped sidewalk, but as fate would have it at the crucial moment a passerby honked in appreciation of the mammoth ride and I turned to wave...
Lets just say the grace of my landing was less then a 9.9.  Rather, it probably would have disqualified me from any Olympic competition, sending me home in disgrace.
My right ankle collapsed folding my foot in, and rather painfully bruised the heel on my left, leaving a rather large patch of road rash (rather, driveway rash) on my calf.  There was a brief moment of self deprecating profanity, at which point Angela came to my aid.  As well as my son Elijah, startled from inside the house to the clamorous noise, carried me back inside. (much to his giddy revelry)  Thankfully nothing broken I spent yesterday with my feet up. in ice.
My future career in the "X-Game's" is now deeply in doubt.
Thankfully none of this effected the Sundays crew in doing a great job yesterday.  Not only was the shop well cleaned and organized when I came in this morning, but they moved a lot more bikes out to new homes!  The Ladies cruiser I finished up the night before sold first thing.  As did the cute beginner BMX.  And the last re-maining scrap truck "Daily Banger" left as well!
Thanks to all the folks coming in with their re-pairs and for trusting us to do our usual "Bang-up" job (maybe I shouldn't use that term..."Bang-up").  Today has already begun in earnest, and I will be shortly be finishing the sweet, vintage Robin Hood we picked up Saturday!
Hope to see you all real soon!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Kevin Bacon in Seven Steps

No, not really.  Just was a cool sounding title.  What a DAY!  We was all busy little bees to boot!  Thanks to all the wonderful familial coming in to visit today!  And the re-pairs!  Had a neat competition going with all the mechs to see who could finish the fastest (and still get it done right!) I think Adam won.  But in my defense I was doing customer relations, meet and greets, and sales until Momma showed up.  We do thank you all for once again trusting us with your repairs, and it was real swell to see some returning faces! 
And talk about empty!  Thanks to the two visiting gentleman whom walked all the way from Clearwater Beach to see us! WOW!  they pass by, like 5 other bike shops on the way here!  (Not TO subtle of an ego stroke there) and they left out of here with the Black MTB, and one of the Pacific "Daily bangers"  Hope your stay here is a fun one!
And to the Gent and his wonderful mom, whom i had the pleasure of talking to via the phone.  Caught us on the Blog and came in to check us out, and left a happy camper with the Trek 720.  And we are SO glad that that self same ride is now his SOLE mode of transportation!
And to the WONDERFUL Mom and Dad, who traveled from Tampa to see what was up.  They came in to check out a ride that was no longer here, but that was OK as the Schwinn "Big Boy" cruiser was EXACTLY what they wanted, or rather what their son would want.  Listen, Kiddo give your Mom and Dad a BIG HUG.  Tell them you love them and appreciate what they do for you! K?
Now at this point in the day, I sunk into the Dungeon, as Angi came in to take over the front.
Sold the other Pacific banger to a gentleman getting back into ridding after a long hiatus as a beginner bike!  LOVE TO HEAR IT!  And once you graduate, we'll be here to hook you up with your upgrade!
The Schwinn commuter went to a gent who had come in for the "Bug Boy" cruiser sadly, a tad bit to late.  but as it will be HIS Tampa street cruiser, I thinks he's better off with the commuter anyway!
The Rhino, we put out last night went to a friend who's joining Angi's Sunday ride, with some of our other neighbors.  Happy trails, man!
On to what's new.  Anthony was a mad man today!  He put out 4!  and started on a 5th in conjunction with me.  It's a real sweet early 60's Robin Hood single speed.  Doing a full mechanical resto, but keeping the original stove pipe black paint!  Should be done tomorrow!  He finished the Schwinn cruiser and three BMX's!  Speaking o Anthony, check out his pic below, and unique eating instrument.  No kidding folks, this was not staged!  He at the whole thing using it!  Gosh, I hope he cleaned it first!
Me?  well after a flood of re-pairs i was only able to finish 2.  One of which, sorry to say i was unable to get a pic of, as it sold as i was wheeling it out to photo!  OH well!
Again, Thanks to all the great peoples who swamped us today! LOVED IT!!!



YES...THAT'S A WRENCH.  No, i DON'T KNOW WHY.  I MEAN IT'S CHINESE FOOD.  THAT REQUIRES NEEDLE NOSE PLIERS!

GORGEOUS LADIES CRUISER
$75.00
See y'all tomorrow!

so far...

Will speak more later but here's the new goodies...
7 SPEED COMFORT CRUISER
$95.00
BEGINNER BMX
$40.00
 
OLD SCHOOL MONGOOSE
$70.00

Friday, June 10, 2011

Call Me an Amazonian!!

OK, yes as most who know me will attest, i am somewhat BEHIND on the times when it comes o technology.  So it hall com as no surprise to any of you that I have just recently discovered the joys of Amazon.com!  WOW!  All the books and goodies at the tip of my fingers (or tip of my debit card)  Have been receiving packages all week long.  And it helps me to win brownie points with the misses as I have found a BEVY of Twilight material.  She has the "Bella Bracelet" and the "Bella engagement ring".  And to top it off the have a huge library dedicated to my newest addiction, Gnosticism.
Recently, while RE watching "the Divinci Code" I reminded myself that I wanted to find out about the Gnostic sect of Christianity.
WOW!  No wonder the Catholic Church work so hard to destroy them, and all their literature!  Being a history buff, it's a real flight of fancy to imagine how different the world would be today, had our ancestors (if the writings they unearthed were in fact true) followed the TRUE teachings of Jesus Christ.
OK, I AM sorry if I am stepping on any dogmatic toes here, But considering what little I have read so far, if you read excerpts from the "Gospel of Philip" "the Gospel of Mary", "The Gospel of Thomas" or "the Gospel of Truth" (that one should be REAL interesting as it is written from the perspective of the serpent in the Garden of Eden!!) You'll find that (once separating the mysticism from the man) Jesus SPECIFICALLY told his disciples to "not follow one hero, nor subscribe to any religious law, or doctrine"
whoa.
I can't wait to read more!
OK, enough philosophy.
Today was a busy production day!  Put out three more beauties!  Check out the old Western Flyer.  A complete mechanical re-furb, new tires, but left the original paint.  WHAT CHARACTER!!
OK, I need to hit it, as the horde is waiting on me for dinner!
RUGGED RHINO!!
ONLY $85.00

SCHWINN COMMUTER
$135.00!!!


VINTAGE WESTERN FLYER
$135.00!!!