Monday, May 20, 2013

YouTube Video: Ban the wheelbender bike rack, they are useless

I just got off the phone with LAB on Friday asking what - if anything - is being done to obsolete Grid, Toaster, Schoolyard, Wheelbender, etc. bike parking systems. The answer is nothing really. The League has, in the past, encouraged manufacturers to refrain from selling this worse than useless design, but suppliers are driven by profits, not what's in the best interest of bicycling.

What's needed is an industry-wide handshake ... an agreement to phase this thing out. It's an advocate's worst nightmare when, finally, bike parking is achieved in a key retail or public location, only to find they went with something that might as well negate the effort. Unfortunately, to really get it right, we have the added responsibility to educate the buyer about what works and what doesn't.

Above and below: Bikes in Newark parked anywhere but in the rack!

All it takes is for your bike to fall over, or someone to knock it over. Since the wheel is trapped between the vertical rods, and is the only thing holding the bike upright, it can be easily damaged or bent beyond repair. It is also difficult to lock a bike properly, through the frame, not just the wheel.

1 comment:

  1. Nice story Frank. I'm cross posting this on WalkBikeJersey. This is what happens when you have people who know nothing about cycling, making decisions for cyclists. That needs to stop!

    That "wheelbender" in the video is VERY popular (unfortunately) here in New Jersey as well. It is very inexpensive and that is what drives the decision to buy them. That that particular rack can be disassembled with regular tools, is very disconcerting.


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