You are here

Projects Updates for Campus Bike Center

Pages

  1. Weekly Update: bike sales, Quad Fix-it day, Bucket Brigade

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Had some nice warm weather last week. Sold a few more bikes. It’s almost as if there’s some kind of correlation between warmer weather and bike riding?
    Elsewhere: we had two participants for our Friday Ride. We had our first Quad Fix It Day but that was a bust: cool and rainy weather don’t make for a good bike time. We’ll do another one this Thursday but it’s forecasting for rain and cool weather again. Spring is fickle.
    Pending approval from Channing Murray, I’ll do a delivery run for the Bucket Brigade this week and see if it’s viable/feasible as a recurring event that we can promote.

    Our donations are picking up but mostly it’s been scrap-worthy parts, including maybe the worst salt/water damaged frame I’ve ever seen. Fun times!
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 30 (I card only)
    Sales: 1,241.60
    Memberships: 7 for $210
    Bikes (refurb): 5 for $820
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $40

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  2. Weekly Update: Moved bikes, Quad Fix-it Day, Bike Census

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Not much news from last week. We still aren’t busy-busy. I picked up bikes from the warehouse to scrap. I moved six kids bikes to Urbana on the big bike trailer and got lots of surprised looks, quizzical glances, and a couple thumbs up. Considering the amount of attention that trailer gets, we should look into getting some signage for it.

    There’s been some nascent interest in volunteering from a few visitors. That’s been welcome. We also rearranged the workspace, moving the second repair stand next to the first one by the tool wall. They’re still safely separated but not totally annexed to the other side of the shop.
    This week is our Friday Ride—last week was a no-show again—and our Quad Fix It Day on Thursday. I’ll be helping with the Bike Census on Wednesday as well.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 15
    Sales: $627.24
    Memberships: 3 for $90
    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $140

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  3. Bike Census volunteer opportunity (4/28) and TED Talk discussion (4/29)

    Happy Friday! I hope you are having a great Earth Week/Earth Month and have been able to attend a few (of the many!) activities this April. The Bike Census Spring 2021 is next Wednesday, April 28, from 10 – 11 AM. Bike Census is a collaborative, community-wide effort between Facilities & Services (F&S) and Champaign County Bikes that began in 2013 as part of ongoing improvement efforts to support the campus’ Bicycle Friendly University status.

     

    If you are available to volunteer next Wednesday morning, please sign up here. There will be a virtual training session beforehand at 9 AM. Two Illinois coffee mugs will be raffled off for student volunteers. I hope you are able to participate and in the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact Sarthak Prasad (sprasad9@illinois.edu).

     

    On another note, in celebration of Earth Month, the next iSEE TED Talk: Eco-Edition event will focus on environmental activism and individual versus corporate responsibility for climate change. On Thursday, April 29 at 7 PM, participants will view a prerecorded TED Talk presented in July 2020 by Xiye Bastida: "If you adults won't save the world, we will." Afterward, all are invited to participate in a guided discussion hosted by iSEE Communications Intern and ESES student, Maria Maring. Sign up here.

     

    As always, be sure to check out the iSEE Sustainability Calendar for upcoming events and programs and help spread the word. Have a great weekend!

     

  4. Weekly Update: Friday Ride

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Not a whole lot to report from last week. We had our first attendee for a Friday Ride. He was unfamiliar with basic rules of the road so we took him on a very short loop to get him acclimated. At a stop light he asked, “So you can ride in the road?” Something to consider in future route planning/participation. We missed a call/voicemail from someone else asking about the Friday Ride so we’ll have to keep an eye on the phones going forward, as well.

    The forecasted snow on Tuesday probably won’t help business this week. I have the Campus Transportation Advisory Committee to attend on Tuesday but the rest of the week is business as usual. I’ll grab some more salvageable parts from the bike barn for staff-tasks for the week.
    The numbers:

    Visits: 25

    Sales: $339
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Tubes/tires: 10 for $50


    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  5. Weekly Update: Basic Maintenance 101, Friday Ride

    All, Still not steadily busy as the temps started to dip. We’ll see what this week brings.
    We had our Basic Maintenance 101 class on Wednesday night. Sam held the class and we had 5 people signed up but only 1 showed. Friday Ride was a no-show except for a DI reporter who wanted to cover the event.
    This week is business as usual and our Friday Ride again. I’ll scavenge some freewheels and tires/tubes off some of the junk bikes in storage at some point, too. We are desperately low on used freewheels and can’t really get any new ones due to the sustained supply shortages.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 22
    Sales: $664.50

    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $410
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $26

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    WManager, Campus Bike Center

  6. Weekly Update: Interview with Buzz Magazine, Fix-a-Flat, Bike Maintenance 101

    Associated Project(s): 

    All,This week projects to be a busy one as the temps climb into the 70s.
    Last week I had an interview with Buzz Magazine and we had our Fix-a-Flat class on Wednesday evening. It was well-attended with 3 participants. Our first Friday Ride was a no-show as it was still, I guess, a little chilly for most people. Personally, 60 and sunny is delightful weather to ride a bike. Elsewhere, I also worked with Todd to clear out some bikes at the warehouse. One guy came by specifically asking for the Bike@Illinois seat cover. I happily obliged.
    This week we have another after-hours class on Wednesday (Bike Maintenance 101) and another Friday Ride.
    Campus Rec IT came by on Friday and set up our new phone, new number, and email address. I worked with Barry to get this new number hooked into TBP communications. The phone will ring in the lobby, which will be much easier to hear and answer than just having my office line.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 18
    Sales: $677.50
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Bikes (refurb): 2 for $370
    Tire/tubes: 4 for $29

    Thanks!

     

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  7. Weekly Update: Bike sales, Fix-a-Flat, Friday Ride

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Much like the weather, we were up and down this past week. Sold a bike to a gentleman who’s planning to ride a portion of the Katy Trail in Missouri with his young daughter. I’ll take it as a good sign for future generations that I’m seeing young kids in here repeatedly.
    This week we’ve got a couple extra curriculars with our Fix-a-Flat class on Wednesday night and our first Friday Ride. I’ll meet with my staff to iron out the details for those two events.
    I’ll also be attending TBPs monthly meeting tonight.
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 20
    Sales: $691

    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $500
    Membership: 1 for $30
    U-locks: 3 for $63 (yay safety!)

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  8. Weekly Update: Getting busier, fixing bikes

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, We’re definitely getting busier as we creep closer to “Everyone Rides” weather.
    Highlight of the week was a dad and daughter coming in with the daughter’s bike. Bad freewheel so we took it apart and cleaned/re-greased it. That kid was into it! She was eager as all get-out, loved every step of the process, refused dad’s help on multiple occasions, and wanted to know all the names of all the bike parts. A model visitor. Dad loved our education/recycling mission and shared a disheartening story about government-mandated lawnmower obsolescence.

    Elsewhere, I got some IT things sorted out that will help the bike center run more smoothly, picked up some bikes from the warehouse, and hired a new employee to help in advance of the warm/busy times.
    This week I’ll have the aforementioned employee start, host a staff meeting on Wednesday evening, and sit in on the SSC Coffee Hour for Transportation & Infrastructure on Thursday.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 16
    Sales: $511
    Memberships: 5 for $150
    Bikes (refurb): 1 for $180
    Misc: $88

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Manager, Campus Bike Center

  9. Weekly Update: Busy week!

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Monday of last week we were as busy as we’ve been since March 2020—if not longer. Warm and sunny tends to do that. I’m sure our new signage isn’t hurting things! Friday picked up as well. We even had someone waiting in the lobby for an open repair stand. It’ll be nice when we can space the stands a little closer and fit a few more in the workshop.
    Last week I interviewed for a potential new hire and a different new hire started last week. He hit the ground running, which was really great, and needed.
    We got TBP some keys to help handle the scrap parts, so that will keep things cleaner around here. On Friday maintenance guys installed garage hook racks from which to hang wheels. I’ve already hung a bunch of wheels up which both makes the wheels more accessible and keeps the space looking cleaner/safer (no one can trip on wheels if they’re not on the ground)!

    This week we’ve got a couple drop-off repairs to handle, some bikes to grab from the warehouse, and some training to do with staff to prep them for busier times.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 29
    Sales: $311
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $200
    Membership: 1 for $30
    Misc: $46

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  10. Weekly Update: Things picking up, second staffer

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Things picked up a little on Thursday/Friday last week as the weather began to turn. We also had two drop-off repairs come in, a Kids Bike Giveaway donation, a bike sale, and a membership sale. Todd from TBP picked up some scrap, which was super helpful. I’m working on getting him a key so he can stay on top of our scrap pile.

    This week is projecting to be warmer and accordingly, I’ll bring on a second staffer for hours for Mon, Tues, Wed. I’ll make arrangements to grab some bikes from the warehouse, as well, since we’ve worked through our current bikes. Now we just need to sell them so we’ll have space for more.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 17
    Sales: $311
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $200
    Memberships: 1 for $30
    U-lock: 1 for $21
    Tire/tube: 4 for $15
    Misc: $45

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  11. Weekly Update - Fix-a-flat

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Fairly slow week even with the “warmer” weather. Had our first fix-a-flat class for the semester but no takers, unfortunately.

    This week I’ll finish up the Bike Center history piece for marketing and have a training scheduled with a new staffer on Thursday evening. I’ll pick up some more bikes as well since we’ve worked through all the bikes in the shop, already. We’ve exceeded designated capacity for bikes already but the more we build, the more we can sell when it gets warm—hopefully.

    The numbers:
    Visitors: 12
    Sales: $208
    Memberships: 4 for $120
    Misc: $52.50
    Tire/tubes: 3 for $22

     

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  12. Weekly Update: Bad weather slows down business

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Last week’s weather was brutal and thus, very slow for us.

    We made it through the bikes I picked up at the warehouse a week prior. A couple good ones and couple damaged-beyond-repair ones. Par for the course. Denver, a new volunteer, visited one day last week and worked his way through fixing up a bike. We got a couple bikes donated and then fixed up for the KBG (Kids Bike Giveaway)—can’t start too early! Some engineering students came in looking for parts for a class project to make some kind of small wheeled conveyance that moves like an inchworm? Something like that. Next time that happens, I’m giving out my contact info so they can follow up with the finished project—would be cool to have a collection of school projects that we helped out with.
    This week I’ve got some student staff interviews and new hire trainings to arrange, TBP meeting, NIRSA virtual conference, and will pick up more bikes. Saturday is going to break 50 degrees so maybe we’ll sell some bikes. The longer term forecast is trending warmer so we’ll see how that affects visit numbers.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 5
    Sales: $109

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  13. Weekly Update: Bike Maintenance 101, Volunteer request, Cold and snow

    All, Last Wednesday we had our first  class of the semester: Bike Maintenance 101. We had one attendee, despite the bitter cold and snow, which was great. He seemed genuinely appreciative of the BC and our mission. We were able to use his bike as a tutorial of sorts for some of the basic repairs.
    We had a new-to-the-university student come in on Thursday who has a strong bike interest and background. He expressed interest in volunteering and becoming more involved—always a welcomed response!
    On Friday I grabbed 4 bikes from the warehouse and we will work those up this week. The cold and snow will keep things nice and quiet here, I’m sure.

     

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 5
    Sales: $262
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $200
    Membership: 1 for $30
    Misc: $31

    Thanks!

     

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  14. Weekly Update: Bike Maintenance 101

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Slow week, of course. Housekeeping abounded: student staff meeting, an interview, safety checks.

     

    This week we have our Basic Maintenance 101 class on Wednesday evening. Other than that, it’s business as usual. The extreme cold will likely keep people away but this week also marks a relaxing of COVID restrictions, so we’ll see how those two balance each other out.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 10
    Sales: $105
    Misc: $60

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  15. Weekly Update: Prospective student employees

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Things were uncharacteristically busy at the tail end of last week, highlighted by two prospective student employees coming in. They were both really excited by what we do here at the Bike Center. Always good to see enthusiasm and it was a nice glimpse of hopefully where we’ll be post-pandemic: fostering enjoyment, excitement and knowledge about bikes!

    Got a student staff meeting, interview, and bikes to build this week.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 14
    Sales: $371.50

    Memberships: 1 for $30
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $200
    Misc: $18

    Thanks!

     

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  16. Weekly Update: CBC Fix-it staion operational

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Not a whole lot to report: The Bike Center Fix It pump is operational and I’ll be meeting this week about marketing to get the word out. I got an email not 12 hours after visiting the new Flagg Hall covered bike parking asking if it was operational, funnily enough. Parking tagged the bike that was locked up out front of the Bike Center. It was probably a donation but doing our due diligence on that.

    This week student staff will start and we’ll work through some more bike builds.

     

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 6
    Sales: $59
    Memberships: 1 for $30
    Misc: $29

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  17. Weekly Update: Donations, moved from the old place

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Slow week, of course. An uptick in donations of parts/bikes. Got a nice hybrid Giant bike that is already fixed up and ready to sell.

    We are almost totally and completely moved out of our former garage home. It’s actually a lot of square footage in there once you remove all the stuff accumulated over the last 11 years or so!

    This week will be scheduling, semester prep, and more work to get the outdoor bike pump fixed up and operational for the few hearty winter cyclists.  

    The numbers:
    Visitors: 10
    Sales: $196
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $120
    Misc: $16

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  18. Weekly Update - Word of mouth, Bike donations

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Pretty slow around these parts—per usual for this time of year.

    A story: A gentleman comes in on Wednesday looking for bikes. We get to talking and he’s volunteered at Working Bikes (the org we give abandoned bikes to) up in Chicago, he knows his way around a wrench. He buys a nice road bike and that was that. An hour later, he brings a friend back; she signs up for a membership. Two days later, same guy is back with another friend; he buys a membership, too. Says they’ll both be back on Monday to work on a bike. Word of mouth really is the best marketing.

    This week I’ll still be processing the donations from the kids bike event that were not kids bikes. We got a lot of adult-sized bikes that aren’t worth saving, unfortunately.
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 11
    Sales: $254
    Memberships: 2 for $60
    Misc: $4

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  19. Weekly Update: Happy New Year, Kids bike giveaway

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Happy New Year! The final week of the semester—and the two weeks preceding it—were a whirl of kid bike prep for our event, which took place on December 19th.
    Here’s a story CI Living did on the event:  https://www.wcia.com/ciliving-2/the-bike-project-hosts-kids-bike-giveaway/
    We gave away 40+ bikes in less than half an hour and our community really came through in providing those donations on such a short time frame.
    This week will be a lot of cleaning and organizing—kids bike parts are strewn every which way as we hustled to get the bikes finished—and an inventory once-over to see where we stand on parts and bikes.
    Thanks!
    The numbers:

    Visitors: 7
    Sales: $19

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

  20. Weekly Update: WCIA interview, Kids bike giveaway

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Last Monday WCIA came by the Bike Center and interviewed me for our Kids Bike Giveaway event. Made the evening news! We got one call from a woman in Tuscola, a man from Danville, and a woman emailed from Springfield, all referenced the news story.
    Accordingly, we’re in full-on kids bike mode: student staff are fixing them, I’m fielding phone calls and emails, people are dropping them off nearly every day we’re open and sometimes even when we’re not.
    I think we’re at around 20 bikes and we should probably get to 30 by week’s end between both shops.
    This week we’ll continue prepping for the Bike Giveaway event, mostly logistical items like signage, set up, and keep fixing them.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 11

    Sales: $215
    Bike (refurb): 1 for $160
    Tires/tubes: 4 for $39

    Thanks!

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Manager

Pages

Subscribe to