Thursday, September 24, 2009

Worksman Industrial Newsboy

Worksman Cycles touts its Newsboy as "the most popular industrial bicycle in North America." It's currently on sale for $339, but that price does not include the baskets and other options. H/T to Tom for bringing Worksman Cycles to our attention.

Worksman declares that "these Bikes are not toys... these are authentic Worksman Industrial Bicycles. Remember, choose Worksman because you want the best industrial bicycles on earth, with components that are more heavy duty than any other bicycles. Also, all Worksman Industrial Bicycles are proudly made in the USA."

The Newsboy is offered in a variety of colors and certain upgrades are available at extra cost. For example, steel rims are standard, but you can upgrade to alloy. A front brake is not standard, but you can add front drum brakes for $70 (a very good idea). The 24" handlebar is standard, but you can choose riser bars. You can get it as a single speed or, for an additional $90, as a 3 speed. The standard fenders are chrome, but for additional cost you can have them painted. Finally, the front baskets and dual rear saddle baskets cost extra. When you put it all together, the bike will cost a good bit more than $339. However, you will have a very useful bike.

Worksman makes an eclectic collection of models including pennyfarthing highwheelers, folding bikes and trikes, and what I can only describe as trikes for the rest of us.

They also make an "urban commuter cruiser" as pictured below.

These come with front drum brakes and thicker than standard chains. Worksman says the frames are built with "heavy gauge steel." It's great to hear a bicycle manufacturer brag about that! They are shipped "mostly assembled." Worksman calls its urban commuter "a bike that will last a lifetime and offer a lifetime of function and pleasure."

And, yes, they are made in the USA.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Paul Frank Vintage Style City Bike

On this blog, we encourage bikes shops to sell “regular bikes to regular people.” And we encourage regular people to buy their bikes from their good ole local bike shop. If you live in or around D.C., you will find a handy list of local bike shops in the metro area in the lower right column. For reasons that David previously discussed here, we believe that local bike shops offer superior quality and service to “big box” stores.

With that cautionary preface, let me introduce you to the Paul Frank City Bike, available at Target and for $510. It is made by Nirve, which puts out a number of models under other brand names, such as Paul Frank and John Deere.

This 3-speed cruiser has the basics of an everyday ride: lightweight fenders, lugged frame, and a rear rack. It would be a good idea to add a front brake for city riding. The Paul Frank City bike is sufficiently attractive that it could cause you to do a double-take when strolling down the aisles of your local Target.


3820 Paul Frank City Bike

Vintage style City Bike, Black

· 19'' Frame - 700C Wheels
· Shimano Nexus 3 Speed with twist shifter
· Coaster brake
· Hand Made Lugged frame
· Upright city handlebars
· Aluminum 3pc crank
· Aluminum wheels
· Leather like double spring saddle
· lightweight fender set
· Welded cartridge Kickstand
· Polished aluminum rear rack

MSRP - $510.00

#3822 Paul Frank City Bike

Vintage style City Bike, Sky Blue
· 17'' Frame - 700C Wheels
· Shimano Nexus 3 Speed with twist shifter
· Hand Made Lugged frame
· Upright city handlebars
· Aluminum 3pc crank
· Aluminum wheels
· Leather like double spring saddle
· lightweight fender set
· Welded cartridge Kickstand
· Polished aluminum rear rack
(May come equipped w/either a foot operated rear coaster brake or hand operated roller brake)

MSRP - $510.00

UPDATE: Nirve is discontinuing these models when the current stock runs out, which is expected to happen by the end of 2009. At that point, Nirve will assist interested customers in contacting any area bike shops that may have the bikes.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Bowery Lane Broncks Black

The Broncks Black from Bowery Lane Bicycles is available through their website for $595.

Bowery Lane Bicycles, founded in 2008, is a family-owned operation in New York City that produces handmade "vintage-inspired" cruisers. According to their website, Bowery "is committed to making affordable bikes that meet the actual day-to-day needs of the urban cyclist. We actively support urban cycle advocacy and the goal of reclaiming city streets for safe sustainable transportation." In the D.C. area, Bowery Lane bicycles "can be seen" at Farinelli's (a clothing store) at 2839 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington, Virginia. H/T to the anonymous commenter who brought Bowery Lane Bicycles to our attention.

The Broncks Black, which Bowery calls the "quintessential city bike," features a chain guard, fenders, kick stand, rear rack, and "a locally hand crafted wooden crate that can easily carry a briefcase, grocery tote (or 2 six-packs of your favorite local brew... ours is Brooklyn Lager)." The crate is definitely a nice touch.

A few specs:

Frame: Steel (grade not specified), 21" size

Wheels: 26" aluminum bolt-on (Bowery touts the bolt-on wheels as "theft-resistant." True, but you'll need to carry a socket wrench with you for changing flat tires).

Brakes: Rear coaster only. (I recommend adding a front hand brake for city riding).

Saddle: Dual springs, leather.

Handlebars: Swept back with long stem. Cork grips.

Weight: 29 lbs.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Trek Belleville

This beautiful blue 3-speed (also offered as a mixte) is a nice surprise from Trek, to be sold for $660. Hat tip to Darin K. for bringing this to our attention.

According to Trek, "the Belleville is the perfect choice for anybody looking for an Eco-smart bike with cargo capacity. Belleville comes completely equipped with front and rear racks, generator lights, and fenders to help you get the job done." Sounds like a BFROU!

The internet buzz is growing:

Cycling News: Commuter specials from Trek

Bike Hugger: Trek's Unexpected Mixte

Bike Hugger youtube video

Eco Velo: Trek Belleville

Here are the specs:

Sizes 46, 51, 55, 59, 64cm
Frame Cro-Moly steel, city design
Fork High tensile steel w/rack mounts

Wheels Shimano Nexus 3-speed rear hub, dyno front hub; alloy 36-hole rims
Tires Bontrager H2 Eco Design, 700x35c

Shifters Shimano Nexus, 3 speed
Crank Alloy 3 piece, steel 44T chain ring
Cassette 19T cog
Pedals Steel city

Saddle Bontrager Nebula Eco Design
Seat Post Steel
Handlebars Steel, city design
Stem Steel, integrated
Headset Aheadset w/semi-cartridge bearings, sealed
Brakeset Tektro alloy caliper

Extras Matched fenders; chainguard; front and rear racks

If you've seen or ridden on one of these in real life, please leave a comment about your impression.