Making or fixing a bike just got easier

MEGAN MILLER
Last updated 05:00 23/07/2013
richard brown
NATASHA MARTIN/ Fairfax NZ

WHEELS MOVING: Timaru is getting its own community cycle space thanks to a collaboration between Aoraki Polytechnic and local bike enthusiasts, including Richard Brown, above.

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Timaru's Moustache Cycle Space has a Facebook page, a following and now a workshop to call home.

The project aims to provide a place for people to come together and learn the skills to build and maintain their own bicycles.

It's a vision of Movember campaigner and bike polo player Richard Brown and is modelled after the Tumeke Cycle Space in Auckland, a non-profit, community-run workshop where tools and training are provided to anyone who wants to learn how to fix a bike.

Mr Brown started a Facebook page for Moustache Cycle Space this year while searching for its bricks-and-mortar home. That's when the project caught the attention of Iain Bamber, head of school for Aoraki Polytechnic's hospitality programme.

Starting on Monday, the cycle space will operate out of a workshop on the polytech campus, for one afternoon each week.

Mr Brown stressed that Moustache Cycle Space is not a commercial venture and won't be competing with Timaru's bike shops.

His preferred approach is to rescue old, unwanted bikes from places like the dump, for just a few dollars, and transform them into customised vintage rides.

"We won't be selling parts or anything like that. We'll simply be supplying tools and advice and can teach you the skills to fix a bike with what's there," he said.

People can bring their own bike projects to work on, or just turn out on the day to see what it's all about. Several bikes have been donated for use in the workshops.

"It's more fun to teach people to do the work themselves than to just do the work for them," Mr Brown said.

The first open workshop will be at Aoraki Polytechnic, corner of Theodosia and North streets, on July 29. For more information go to facebook.com/MustacheCycleSpace.

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- The Timaru Herald

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