Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Recyclery.

The Recyclery, as I've written before, is a non-profit bike coop located on the south side of Evanston. Volunteers collect used and trashed bicycles, fix them, and then give them back to the community.

The back of the shop is filled with dusty bikes just waiting for some love.

Since the beginning of the quarter, I've been visiting the Recycling every Sunday afternoon to overhaul my own commuter bike. With the help of two instructors, Sharlyn and John (shown here), I reassembled and adjusted one part of my bike each week - derailleurs, bottom bracket, headset, shifters, wheel hubs, brakes, etc.

There were only four students, so I received a lot of feedback on my progress, and even had my own workstation with a full array of tools.

Here I am at the last class, putting a few final adjustments on my brake tension, accompanied by the shop dog.

There are few things more satisfying to me than getting my hands greasy and understanding the intricate ways in which each part works together. The bicycle is a precision instrument, and that is reflected in the attention to detail required for it to run as it should. There is no way of understanding these details until you take it apart and see it happen.

I rode my bike home today, and I could really feel all the improvements that I had made on it. These are skills I'll keep for a long time.


第三只眼 said...

I wish you were in Changsha so that you could fix my rusty bike.

cecil said...

the recyclery looks like my back yard and shed, literally.

the commuter bike i use is an old peugeot and its really heavy. there is a hill near by house that is unavoidable when youre biking and taking the peugeot up it is really fucking hard.

Jacob said...

Faye, because I know that sometimes you wonder what I think about you, I think it would help you to know that the nyu students in this video are people I imagine are close friends of yours that you speak to and see face to face daily.

If you get bored during the middle, the last minute of the video when he does an inventory of everyone's shit is really funny also.

cecil said...


oh jacob. fuck.