Profile # 4: Cycle Salvation
In the final piece of our Partner Series, the Right Bike team would like to introduce the partner we all couldn’t do without – Cycle Salvation. Bike mechanics at Cycle Salvation have been diligently working behind the scenes to facilitate the Right Bike program since its inception. In fact, most of the fleet came from the bike shop through individual and partner donations over the course of the last year. With some help from our friends at Habitat for Humanity ReStores, who collect bikes on our behalf at their two locations (Enterprise Ave and Walkley Rd), we were able to collect 4O donated bikes that were suitable to be transformed into Right bikes.
Cycle Salvation has been operating as a member of the Causeway Group of Social Businesses since 2008. It operates with the partnership of the Causeway Work Centre, Re-Cycles, local bike shops and the Ottawa Community. With over 1000 bikes refurbished and 1500 diverted from the landfill and recycled in the past 4 years, we think that they are doing a great job.
Cycle Salvation employs 6 bike mechanics at any given time and offers an environment of support and training for anyone looking to gain new skills. Some don’t stay for long, moving on to different employment opportunities, while others have stayed for some time and have now become experts in the field. A few of the mechanics that have built up our fleet of Right bikes are pictured above.
Not all of the bikes came in tiptop shape, and some needed a bit of extra elbow grease. With great knowledge and proficiency the mechanics at Cycle Salvation were able to give new life to these classic bikes. The grinder even made an appearance once or twice. Check out the videos and watch out for sparks! Man, those boys can fix just about anything.
“I love my job – it turns my crank, so to speak,” says Paul Wylie, Head Mechanic at Cycle Salvation. “It gives me a lot of satisfaction”.
You may be wondering what else the mechanics have been up to these past few months. Cycle Salvation spends winters refurbishing its many donated bikes for sale in the spring. Right now, the shop is full of bikes ready to ride. The back room is outfitted with 3-tiered shelves – which are full to the rafters – and even the basement is full of roadworthy rides.
“Some days in March and April we just sell bikes all day long,” says Paul. “Good road bikes usually sell out first.” With most of the bikes sold in early spring, your best bet for a good selection of different bikes is to plan for early in the season.
The Cycle Salvation team has almost completed assembling the fleet of Right bikes, and we can’t wait to take them out for a great spring ride. To celebrate our inaugural year of operation and the fruition of a community project that has gathered many partners from diverse parts of our community, Right Bike will participate in spring events around Wellington West and Westboro. Stay tuned to our website for all the dates and info. We hope that you will ride with us, too.
See you around the neighbourhood!
-The Right Bike Team