Ride Away Bikes is taking off
With a giant window wall, it’s surprising that Ride Away Bikes isn’t sweltering under the hot July sun. The lights are off, which I like since it’s bright enough without them and it saves energy.
A few customers are picking up bikes and I have a look around. One wall is full of bike supplies and through the back, behind the counter, I can see oodles of bike parts and evidence of a repair shop.
Bikes & Repairs
An entire wall is full of mounted bikes. They are so clean, new and sexy and I want to ride one away.
I find out from Steve, a helpful proprietor, that their flagship brands are Raleigh and Fairdale. Given the size of the shop, Steve says they can’t carry a lot of stock at one time. He explains that they mainly cater to commuters and city cyclists.
They also engage in what he calls bicycle recycling, in which they refurbish discarded bikes and sell them, “at a very reasonable price.” Interestingly, they’ve established relationships with property owners, who bring them bikes (donations) that have been abandoned at their buildings.
My Chain Reactions
I think the bike recycling model sounds great – giving new life to two-wheelers that were collecting dust and rust. Apparently, this is a practice that also takes place at their Vancouver location, the website of which outlines their Recycling Policy.
One of the guys picking up a repair tells me, “This is one of the only honest bike shops in the city. I only take my bike here and I tell others to do so too.”
Ride Away Bikes was featured in a recent BlogTO post: The Best Used Bike Shops in Toronto.
Location: 778 Dundas Street West (west of Bathurst)
Seasons: Open year-round
Known for: Refurbishing bikes that “haven’t been treated well”, city bikes for commuters, Raleigh and Fairdale brands
Most common repair: Bikes that need a lot of TLC
How to find them: rideawaybikes.ca, rideawaybikes.wordpress.com