2CB History Bike Clinic Lesson Trailer  Veteran 
May 5, 2021

Last Saturday I participated in an event held by a local church. Their youth group held a "bike clinic" in which people bring their bike for the group to clean, oil, inflate, and then to one of three "experts" for a safety check and any related adjustments needed. The pastor had heard about SeconChancBikes 2 years ago, and donated a bike that had been abandoned in their parking lot. They asked me then if I would be interested in being an "expert" at the next clinic, and I agreed. Well, that one did not happen because of the pandemic. This year they worked out a methodology - people had to make reservations so the crowd was limited; masks and distancing were enforced. They set up a circuit where people moved from station to station getting bike worked on, then on to one of us 3. Here's a shot of their group just as the first couple of customers arrive:

Workgroups of youths in parking lot

and here's my setup.  I had my tools and a thermos of coffee on the tailgate. I used up my business cards a while ago and keep forgetting to order more, so I just told people who asked to take a pic of the sign on my truck.

Pickup truck , tailgate open with tools on it, bike repair stand beside it

Several people donated cash to 2CB - total of  almost $200. Not too bad for 3 hours work. I managed to fix quite a few small problems that people had, making their bike safer and more enjoyable. A couple of them had so little braking ability they really were unsafe. I told a few they needed brake shoes, showed them what that is, how to replace. They can get them at a hardware store, Target, or a bike shop. They literally did not know why bikes stop when you squeeze those handles, so of course did not understand why their bike no longer did. So I must have seemed like some sort of wizard!

Two had loose handlebars which make riding in a specific direction a challenge, to say the least. A simple tightening with a large allen wrench takes care of it in a jiffy, but who has one of those? I told several they needed to replace cables to alleviate the stiffness in shifter. Uh Huh. Not gonna happen. Some day their bike will be donated and I'll do it. I agreed to do additional work for 4 people, pretty clearly folks who would be in my target market with beater bikes that needed cables and such I told them to text me and we'd make an appointment. All in all a very satisfying morning.

Then I rushed off to rent a van and help my Syrian friends move, at long last, to a new home - a very nice end unit townhouse. I made 4 trips with the van as they and their friends who pitched in to help them all loaded and unloaded. Two trips Sat. then two Sunday morning. After the last trip I turned in the van, got my truck, got the four bikes (all from me) from the old garage - one in the bed and 3 on the rack, and delivered to the new home. The youngest boy's bike is way too small for him - its the 2d one I've given him; now he gets a 3d. I told him I'd send photos and he can pick.

Today I got a call from a woman who said she's a friend of one of my bike recipients - he was one of the first, and has sent 6 or 8 people my way for bikes since then. She said she has two bikes that don't work and I can have them if she can get one that does! I love it. I'd have given her a bike on John's sayso but am happy to do a deal. Edit: I fixed her bike; she clearly was fond of it but thought it was hopeless, that I'd just use it for parts.  She was clearly pleased to have "Ols Paint" back in fine fettle!

Business is heating up! Incidentally, I updated the website to once again accept cash donations in addition to in-kind through the wish list. I activated the Bikeguy@secondchancebikes.org email to accept Zelle payments. This replaces the previous Paypal method, which the newe tax law had arranged to tax me on.

Zelle is slick. I got $685 in donations to pay for emergency dental work for a friend in need a few weeks back, from a group of Arab women who do things like that for folks in need. I had found her a Medicaid dentist; that visit determined the need for an oral surgeon (good luck finding one who takes Medicaid!). So I found a surgeon, tapped the charity group for $ and got her issue fixed less than 48 hours from learning of it. She'd been sitting home in excruciating pain not knowing where to start. Two weeks later I gave her and her two kids bikes. Their smiles still light up my life.