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11389Re: MSNBC report on Bike Shop vending machines

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  • Rich
    Apr 2, 2010
      One potential problem I can foresee is vandalism, both for the contents and money, unless placed in very well lighted and patrolled areas.

      I would think also that you would want quite sophisticated vending machines that would accept both cash and credit/debit cards. The latter means an internet connection of some sort is required though this could also signal the need for restocking and service.

      With initial machine cost, plus upkeep and maintenance costs, I have no idea what the profit potential would be for such a machine. I would expect that locations would have to be very carefully chosen to have any chance of such machines showing a profit. An LBS might have one outside for customer relations purposes but I am not sure of the potential in other locations.

      Rich Wood

      --- In rootsradicals@yahoogroups.com, Pete B <nackterman@...> wrote:
      > The Treehugger blog had a story on a bike part vending machine and workstand
      > by Trek back in 2008
      > http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/07/vending-machine-for-bike-parts.php
      > <http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/07/vending-machine-for-bike-parts.php>
      > 'Newspapers are unable, seemingly, to discriminate between a bicycle
      > accident and the collapse of civilization' : George Bernard Shaw
      > On 1 April 2010 01:46, Tone <tone@...> wrote:
      > >
      > >
      > > Bob,
      > >
      > > When I was still living in NYC the rule was a cyclist could bring a bike
      > > on a train during rush hour as long as the last (and possibly the first
      > > as well?) subway car had a sufficient amount of extra room. I never had
      > > any problem bringing my bike on the subway on the few occasions I did
      > > (stolen rear wheel, etc.). Sometimes police officers will walk through
      > > the chain of subway cars as part of their patrol and none of them ever
      > > said anything to me. Of course I am always courteous to fellow passengers
      > > and recognize a bike is not in its element on a subway. It did piss me
      > > off when I saw other ignorant cyclists kind of force their bike on with
      > > them like it was just another person trying to squeeze onÂ… and during
      > > rush hour and not in the last car, etc. That kind of attitude and action
      > > messes things up for all the good cyclists out there.
      > > Actually the hardest part of bringing any bike onto a subway is getting
      > > it down the stairs and especially through the turnstile if there is not a
      > > booth-operator buzz-door. One time when I was already on a somewhat empty
      > > subway car with my bike, the car eventually started to get somewhat
      > > filled. Well before every seat was taken I gave up my seat and sat on the
      > > top tube of the bike while it was leaning against the grabbing pole away
      > > from the doors. When there were no seats I actually told a woman she
      > > could sit down on my Xtracycle. At first she declined as if initially not
      > > wanting to accept something from a stranger, but after a little while she
      > > asked if I was sure it was ok. She ended up sitting on the bike with me
      > > and we talked about it. Other passengers over heard and started asking
      > > questions and said it was cool. I also told other standing passengers
      > > rather than reaching up for the ceiling-cross bar they could support
      > > themselves by holding onto my handlebars, which had plenty of hand
      > > positions and grip.
      > >
      > > By the way, I just e-mailed the owner of the only local bike shop in town
      > > with the bike vending machine MSNBC link. His shop is near the edge of
      > > town, so I suggested he consider setting up a vending machine near the
      > > end of the Heritage Rail Trail, which runs down 41 miles to about 14-16
      > > miles North of Baltimore. The rail trail here ends within blocks of down
      > > town York, PA and it also runs directly alongside the main local bus
      > > company junction hub. Many of their busses have bike racks, so I think it
      > > would be easy to team up with the bus company to set up a bike vending
      > > machine possibly on their bus station property right beside the rail
      > > trail. It would obviously service the recreational cyclists on the trail,
      > > but would also provide snacks and repair kits to cycling bus commuters,
      > > who might be waiting for their second bus after getting a flat on the way
      > > to their first bus. Since his shop is up hill near the edge of town the
      > > location would allow customers to fix their own problems without having
      > > to walk up-hill for quite a distance. Besides the vending machine's ideal
      > > self-promoting location, I would also imagine the bus company could
      > > lightly advertise the machine as an added service to their customers on
      > > their route pamphlets, bus drivers could certainly direct broken down
      > > cyclists to the machine after seeing the sad passenger mount their
      > > flatted bike on the front rack, and I could easily imagine the local TV
      > > stations running a promo report as part of their prime time local news.
      > > I guess I will just have to see if the local bike shop owner wants to try
      > > it out. Heck, if he does not I might even consider it. With an
      > > Xtracycle/Big Dummy it would be easy enough to ride down the rail trail
      > > and restock a few vending machines twice a week or so.
      > >
      > > _TONE_
      > >
      > >
      > >
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