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Give Free Bicycle Safety Tune-Ups, And Get Paid For It!

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One of the ways we can really help people, especially children, is to make sure their bikes are safe. A lot of them aren't, you know. Kids, and adults too, are running around with broken brake cables, wheels which are loose in the dropouts, purses tied to handlebars ready to fall into the spokes, sharp edges sticking out of parts, loose handlebar stems - well, you get the idea. If you can fix just one of these problems, you will very likely be preventing an injury, or maybe even saving a life!

So, I'm proposing that you set up a free bicycle safety tune-up service. Of course you want to get paid for it, you've got to pay your mortgage! Here are my ideas:

Let the local media know your plans and they will publicize it for you. You might also paper the town with brightly colored flyers complete with a big picture of a bicycle on them.

Perhaps on the first and third Saturday of each month, you can be found in a popular park or parking lot, along with your tools and a handful of spare parts.

The people will come to you, and you do the basic things necessary to fix their bikes.

Here are the ways you can get paid:

* If you want to be a bicycle mechanic, you can give your card to everyone, and tell them to remember you when they need ordinary bicycle service, such as regular tune-ups, flat tire repair, and derailleur adjustment.

* Anything which is beyond a safety issue, such as a broken derailleur cable or a worn-out tire, you can advise the people of the cost, and many will gladly pay you to fix the problem.

* You could work with a local bicycle shop. You might represent the shop, who will pay you an hourly wage or by the bike for doing the safety check in their name.

* You could have any sponsor for your safety check service. It might be a local manufacturer of coat hangers. Your sponsor might prefer you to work on his/her premises, and support you with some replacement parts, an airconditioned workroom, etc.


* You could make an arrangement with a local bike shop in which you give out signed copies of their business cards, or special coupons, and tell the people who come by your safety check to do business with that bike shop for a five or ten percent discount if they present the card. The bike shop will then give you five or ten percent of each sale generated from the signed cards or coupons.

* You could have a pile of accessories such as locks, helmets and bicycle lighting for sale at your safety check station.

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