It isn’t just the practical efficiency of this super cool bike repair vending machine that makes me happy; it’s the message it sends. Not only are bikes getting you somewhere, but when something happens to them, you may be able to fix it up yourself, right out in the open, where other people will see! Yep. Bikes are understandable machines.
This reminds me (in a fast-forward evolution sort of way) of the Bike Barn at the University of California, Davis, a student run barn full of bikes and bike parts and students who would a) teach you to fix your bike; or b) fix your bike for you for a small fee. They held bike-riding lessons, bike riding events and bike sales, where the karmically inspired enjoyed scouring the lines of bikes for their once-stolen beaters that taught them to buy locks. The Bike Barn, centrally located on campus, was a common pitstop and meeting place for students. It didn’t hurt that everyone who worked inside combined their bike-smarts with pretty decent looks– rugged or otherwise.
Though it’s unlikely that Wellington is going to get it’s own Bikefixtation anytime soon, (there’s only one, and it’s nestled deep in the bicycle lovefest known as Minneapolis), we do have the Mechanical Tempest. I always think that everyone knows about it but then someone says they don’t, so… if you’re looking to do a little wrenching on your bike but might like a little assistance, look no further. They’re located at 128 Abel Smith Street in Wellington and you’re most likely to find a mechanic on site to help you on weekday evenings.