BikeCommuters.com

Author Archive: RL Policar

As one of the original founders of BikeCommuters.com. He has helped build this site into one of the leading and oldest bicycle commuting blog sites. Filled with passion for everything two wheels, RL Policar covers a multitude of subjects from product reviews, news, articles and technical how to's.

I felt safer on the street than the grocery store parking lot

I was on my way home when I decided to make a detour at the local grocery store to get a few items for the home. As I make my way through the parking lot, I was greeted by aggressive drivers who seemed to be in a rush. There were work trucks, Mad Moms in Minivans, the elderly (nursing home nearby) and a few rogue shopping carts.shopping center
Gosh, I have to say I felt so vulnerable and so much more at risk riding through the parking lot than I did when I was on the street! I had vehicles coming at me from all directions and none of them seem to be paying attention to me since I wasn’t a car. Luckily I made it in the store…but now that I’m done shopping, I gotta try and get home! Wish me luck!

One of my favorite products for bike commuting

First of all, this isn’t some sort of pitch or a sponsored ad, but I simply LOVE Febreze  Here’s a few reasons why. Anytime I would ride, I always kept a bottle of Febreze in my bag. Before changing out of my riding clothes, I spritz my work clothes with it, just to give it that fresh smell.

febreze_hero

In addition, I spray my riding clothes with some Febreze just to ensure that it won’t get all funky as it dries. I also spray my riding shoes too! To me its peace of mind knowing that I won’t be smelly. It’s also a good idea to spray your bags. I usually spray the section of my backpack that touches my sweaty back. I usually keep a small spray bottle in my bag and on my desk, yes I also I have one at home.

Mobile Bicycle Repair Unit-Back in Action!

It’s been a few months since we’ve been out fixing bicycles for the homeless community of Santa Ana. It wasn’t until I received an email from our resident Doctor-Biker, Doc Li asking when the next event would be. After some calendar checking and asking our wives which date would work, we headed out to Civic Center and Ross in Santa Ana, Ca.

The weather was a crazy hot, 95 degrees with about 50% humidity. Needless to say it was we were sweating before we even did anything. I loaded up my mini van with all the tools and parts that we received from our various sponsors such as Two Wheels One Planet of Costa Mesa, Planet Bike and Freedom by WTB. We also had received a cash donation from our favorite Cop, Officer Ben, which allowed us to purchase additional hard goods for the event.

mobile bicycle repair by bikecommuters.com

Locked and loaded with parts, tools and water to pass out to the homeless…it was a hot day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On our way out!

The Moe and RL. These are the two Original Founders of BikeCommuters.com

The Moe and RL. These are the two Original Founders of BikeCommuters.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upon arrival, we immediately got set up. We had our EZ-UP to shield us from the sun, had our two work stands ready, got the tools out. As soon as we were ready, things got busy. Word quickly spreads in the community that we are providing FREE BICYCLE REPAIR SERVICES.Doc Li is our most loyal volunteer. He's ALWAYS available when set up these events. We're really grateful for his help.Doc Li is our most loyal volunteer. He’s ALWAYS available when set up these events. We’re really grateful for his help. The Moe is a major asset in our efforts because he is our translator. 70% of our “customers” speak Spanish, so he makes it easier to communicate with them. There have been times when I didn’t have a translator with me and that proved to be difficult. Giving back to the community. Giving back to the community is always rewarding. Even though our volunteer count was low this time, we did manage to help out at least 20 bicycles. The most common issues we see and this is where Two Wheels One Planet helped us out with are brake pads.They donated a good amount of pads for the cause. Almost ALL of the bicycles we fixed had some sort of braking issue. Some of them didn’t even have any brakes! With that in mind we replaced cables, housing and brake pads. We also made sure that all the bicycles had a well lubed drive train.

As we’re working away there was a gentleman who was just standing watching us. He started asking questions why we were out there, and if we were affiliated with any religious organization. So I briefly gave him our back story that at one point in time, I was coming out there to help feed the homeless with my church, but once I saw there were so many bicycles, I knew this was a greater need that needed to be addressed. With the help of various corporate sponsors and generous individuals, we’ve managed to keep this initiative going strong for a couple of years now. He was pretty impressed on what we were doing and thanked us for providing this service. I told him it’s the least we can do, we’ve been blessed with the ability to fix bicycles, we’re pretty good at it, so we might as well use our talents to serve others.

If you’re interested in taking part of our next event by either volunteering, donating hard goods or funds, feel free to reach out to us: info@bikecommuters.com

Got a new project: Bike Bug Cargo Trike

We’ve partnered up with the folks of BikeBug.net to create a new project build. We’ve got a Breast Cancer Awareness Ride that we plan on debuting this build at. The event is slated for October 17th, so that means we don’t have a lot of time to get it finished. So here is what we received from BikeBug.net, a foldable cargo trike. It comes with everything you see, but we did upgrade the seat to match the white fenders and we threw on a bike bell just for kicks.

Cargo Trike by Bikebug.net

Cargo Trike by Bikebug.net

The cargo trike is equipped with a single speed coaster brake.

The cargo trike is equipped with a single speed coaster brake.

Riding the Cargo Trike is going to take some getting used to. We found that it likes to tip when you take sharp turns. Another upgrade we are considering would be a 3 speed Nexus hub. Pedaling the trike isn’t impossible, but it is tough!

photo 3 (1)

The white fenders POP against the red paint.

photo 2 (2)

There’s going to be some major work involved with this build project, we just hope we can meet the deadline. Hopefully with the help of some talented people, we can get this project rolling.