Friday, February 26, 2010

New Sponsor - It's a girl Thing

I want to welcome It's a Girl Thing Cycling Clothing as a new sponsor of Bike Jax.

It's a Girl Thing is Liz and Jennifer a couple of local ladies that were just "Two women, two bicycles, and nothing to wear."

They go on to to say, "that's what we thought when we checked out the market for women's cycling clothing. We women should not have to settle for mediocrity. It's a Girl Thing has done something about it!

No boring fluff. We are attitude, comfort and style. What you wear is a reflection of you. Our clothes are uniquely designed with women cyclists in mind. Our mission is to have every woman cyclist out there Feel Good, Look Great, and Ride Better."

You can find their line of jersey's, shorts and t-shirts at local bike shops or online HERE.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Bike Jax Ringtones

Bike Jax rolled out the the bell ring tone last fall and since then it has been downloaded over 2200 times.

After more emails than I care to count asking for a message tone. I am happy to say it is finally available. It's perfect for your text, IM and email alerts.

You can test it out on the lefthand side of this page. Download it HERE.

If you would like the ringtone you can get it HERE.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Welcome to Our New Sponsors.

I would like to welcome two new sponsors to Bike Jax.

ZenCog Bicycle Company

ZenCog is not only Jacksonville's newest bike shop, it is also the hottest going right now. Located in Riverside in the historic Mary Built Building on Stockton St at the corner of College St.

If you've been dreaming of building up you own dream bike. ZenCog is the place to visit to get your dream ride on the road. While they specialize in single-speed bikes. They are in no way limited to building bikes for the gearless set. You can read more about them HERE.

The Bicycle Clinic

Alot of you by now have an opportunity meet Alex of mobile bicycle repair fame. His was generous enough to donate his time and skills offering free repairs and tuneups at the Bike Valet the last couple of months at the RIverside Arts Market.

I'm happy announce that he will be joining Bike Jaxat the Bike Valet again at RAM this season which opens March 6th.

If you need anything done to your bike from flat repair to a complete restoration give Alex at The Bicycle Clinic a call. Our original article about Alex can found HERE.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

How To Get Your Sweetness On.

Ok guys, it's that one day of the year you had better be on your game. I don't care how many times your gal said, "oh, don't bother doing anything for me on Valentines." I'm going to let you guys in on a secret. It does not matter how much she espouses her distain for day. She's lying. She cares and she cares deeply. And you had better go out of your way to let her know how special she is and how lucky you are to be with her.

If you follow these easy steps you will not only make your gal very happy. You may just end having some fun yourself.

Step One:

Bring on the flowers. All woman love getting flowers. I think it's build into their DNA.

Step Two:

One word, Chocolate. Again, built into DNA.

Step Three:

Make the day all about her. Plan a day around a nice bike ride. See a movie (one of her choice.), plan a picnic if the weather allows. A ride to museum is always a good choice. Unstrap the helmet and let the blood flow to that noggin of yours and put some thought into. There are a ton of things you can do with her that will make her feel like a queen and not break the bank.

If you followed the 3 simple steps above and you let her know how special you think she is. She just may return the favor and make your evening special.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Pass the Mic N' Bike II

If you're tired of sitting around the house and are seeking a reason to get on your bike, hear some great bands and mingle with the masses. The it thing this weekend is Pass the Mic N' Bike II.

Following up from the largely successful October event, we're presenting Pass the Mic n' Bike 2!

New bands, New locations (one old favorite) - same awesome story.

Meet up at Memorial Park at 7:45ish and we'll be biking to one riverside house to hear the St. Augustine's PREMADONNASAURUS, then onto Warehouse 8b (Talleyrand) for a dueling set between STARING DAGGERS and CIVILIZATION and then onto a Springfield manor for DEVIL RUNS THE TRUCKSTOP (mere blocks from Shantytown).

Bring your bike, your booze and your good times.

You can RSVP on Facebook here.

Or if you not up for the group ride thing or are running late here is the map of the route and venue locations.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Bike Jax Face Lift For It's 3rd Anniversary

Bike Jax is 3 years old this week. After 3 years the site was in desperate need of a complete overhaul. So we threw it on the stand and torn it down. Cleaned and completely rebuilt it, keeping the parts that were still good and adding some new parts where it was needed. Let me know what think. Good or bad.

One of the new parts is the Sponsors section on the right. We have a few new local and national sponsors and will let you know more about them once we get them up on the site. If you would like your business to be included as a sponsor contact me at [email protected].

Monday, February 1, 2010

ZenCog - A New Attitude

If you talk with local bike shops (LBS) they will give you all kinds of reasons why their sales are lagging. The number one complaint I hear most from LBS's is that they can't compete with the prices of frames and components on the internet.

I also get the distinct pleasure of hearing the other side of the coin from the patrons of those same bike shops. The ones that walk into those LBS's and walk out empty handed. They also have a number reasons why they don't purchase locally.

Their number one reason: LBS doesn't offer what they are seeking in a bike. And they usually follow with a statement which always includes something about the "attitude" of the shop or sales person.

As of today there is new bike shop in town that thinks it has the answer to this issues. How to be a self-sustaining bike shop while providing the bikes and service the people want, and doing it all without the snobbish attitude.

Enter ZogCog Bicycle Company. Located in the Mary Built building on Stockton St. at the corner of College St. sits a bike shop experience like none other you've had.

The First thing you'll notice when walking in is the wall of flat screens with table chairs and keyboard. This is what makes ZenCog Bicycle Company different and allows them to bridge the gap of what a bike shop offers and what the customer is looking for. This where you'll be taken thru the ZenCog catalogue of frames and components to build up your perfect bike that also keeps you within budget.

I had the chance to meet and talk with ZenCog mastermind Clark Schaffer to find out more about how it all works.

Bike Jax: What is ZenCog Bicycle Company and what sets it apart from other bicycle shops in the Urban Core?

CS: ZenCog Bicycle Company is more than a bike shop, it's a lifestyle. Most other shops try to lock people into a category, whether it be road, mountain, or whatever, then fit the customer to what they have in stock. ZenCog is a custom place where a person says "this is what I like, this is who I am, can you build a bike to fit me?" It all started with the ZenCog. A steel bike I built for myself, which starts with a road frame and track dropouts. I put all high end components on it (the few that were required with a coaster brake). And I ended with a maintenance free ride that is like no other, it coasts silently and has no cables or controls. Find that at another bike shop.

Bike Jax: Who are the guys/gals that makeup ZenCog and what does each add to the ZenCog experience?

CS: Unfortunately no estrogen, just three relatively freaky outcasts. The Garf and Istvan (Steve the Hungarian) are the face of the shop. They have many years in the bicycle business, and have a true love of cycling.

Garf is the front man and will pull out catalogues and take customers on a tour of our distributor web sites to find bikes and parts to fit the project.

Steve is flat out the best mechanic in town. He is not just a kid who wants a part time job in a bike shop, he is a professional. Service is our mainstay. Although we may have the best parts prices in town, we are steadfast that we offer top shelf service, and the customer must pay for the service, its not free to go with overpriced parts. We kind of flip flop the business model.

I am just a business man and do the web part early in the morning. I maintain the website, Facebook, the online catalogue, blog, gallery, and all technology. This is really about Garf and Steve, they do the heavy lifting.

Bike Jax: What brands of bikes will the shop be carrying?

CS: Of course you can get a custom ZenCog, but a single speed coaster road bike is not for everyone. The other brands we carry are Surly, Origin 8, Vilano, Soma frames, and Pake frames. We are searching for a quality commuter bike, (3 and 7 speed) to offer and will announce it on the website when we find the quality brand we want to represent. Garf has frequently talked about Marin, and that may be it. We will mostly be carrying steel frames. Nobody in town really does that anymore, so we see that as our niche.

Bike Jax: Will ZenCog be catering to specific type of rider?

CS: We will cater to all riders, however we will not be for everyone. We specialize in single speed and fixie steel bikes and conversions. However we can build a fully geared road, mountain, touring, or commuter bike.

Due to our low inventory model and off beat presentation we will not appeal to everyone. If someone wants to buy a pre-built carbon fiber or aluminum bike right now - today, we cannot serve them well. There are many fine shops on the Westside that can do that. Close by there is City Cycle, Open Roads, and Lakeshore. All really fine shops with passionate owners. They appeal to many folks, and suspect have a loyal following.

We are there for those that just don't fit in there. We are gambling that there is enough of that market that we will appeal to.

Bike Jax: What is a ZenCog Bike?

CS: We must differentiate here. ZenCog is an attitude. It is about being unique, and not just following. The ZenCog Bicycle Company builds custom steel frame bikes, whether it be a ZenCog original coater road bike, or a Surly, Soma, or Pake. We will even try to add the little known but highly coveted Waterford and Gunner frames. If someone wants a frame built just for them, we will be working with a young and passionate frame builder in Gainesville - Brandon Kelley.

In answer to your question a ZenCog bike is one that makes the rider feel good. If a rider feels good on their custom bike, they will ride it more. If they ride it more, they will be happier, and maybe even live longer. The only way we can gauge our success is with smiles. In the end, we want to sell smiles. How cool is that?

Bike Jax: Does ZenCog also offer service and repairs?

CS: Service and repairs is what feeds us. Upgrades and conversions go along with that. It is Steve, the master mechanic that will drive the success of the shop. You won't be coming in, buying a bike, and getting free lifetime service. We just couldn't charge enough for the bike or components to make that business model work. That is like insurance. You offer it free, but really don't expect 90 percent of the customers to take you up on it.

We sell service, let's be perfectly clear about that. A long time ago, someone asked me what I was worth. I struggled with that and undersold myself. It led to failure, and I learned from that mistake. You must get paid what you are worth. So here is our model. We think retail pricing on parts is excessive. Therefore we will be less expensive than other local shops, and maybe a tad higher than Internet stores. That will be a bargain for our customers. When it comes to service it is like going to any professional, and it will cost. When was the last time you bought a car and got free tuneups for the life of the car?

I don't mean to dwell on this point, but merely to set the expectations of our customers. If you want the best service available, come see us and help keep us in business.

The final thing I will say on service is that we will service every bike out there. Whether you just picked it up at a garage sale for $25, or paid $2,500 for a carbon fiber beauty at another shop. Steve has worked on them all and will treat each with the same courtesy and professional attention you and your bike deserve. We are not judgemental, that is what ZenCog is about. No attitudes.

There you have it. A local bike shop that gets you on the bike you want, with the service you want. All without the judgment that other shops dole out like candy on holloween. Stop by and check them out.

ZenCog is located at:
883 Stockton St. Jacksonville, FL 32204
If you want to give them a call: 904.219.7777
Find them on the net HERE.