Freewheel Collective's Blog

"The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man." -Iris Murdoch

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Freewheel in the Statesman

The Stony Brook Statesman has reported on the Liberate-Reuse-Recycle program. Check it out!

The only factual error I saw in the article is that I know Mr. Woodruff as Mark, not Bob. I wish they would not have omitted our web address, shop location, open hours, etc. But I am correcting that by commenting on the article. Maybe they would print a letter to the editor to the same effect.

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More Bikes Liberated!

Today, the Liberate-Reuse-Recycle program took another step forward when SB Facilities & Services and University Police removed 16 tagged bikes from various areas around the Academic Mall and relocated them to Freewheel Collective’s shed. More tags are on the way, and we noticed a lot of taggable bikes on our ride two weeks ago. In total, 33 abandoned bikes have been removed from around campus this semester. The result is more space for cyclists, and the removal of bikes that become obstructions (locked to benches and railings!)

On our end, we’ve overhauled and redistributed parts from about 10 of these bicycles. After we sift through this next batch, the remainder will be moved ahead to University Recycling. A really excellent example of very different groups on campus working together for a purpose with multiple benefits! Thanks to all our collaborators.


Freewheel Coordinator

Update: Just spoke with a reporter at the Stony Brook Statesman, who is writing a story on the program.  We’ll link it here when it comes out.

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Freewheel Bicycle Collective is working with Stony Brook University’s Facilities and Services, the University Police, and University Recycling to remove, recycle, restore, and reuse abandoned bicycles from racks on campus. This program is a win-win-win situation: abandoned bikes are unsightly and hazardous obstructions, they take up space that could be occupied by bicycles that are actively used, and they are often still usable (for parts, at least) for other riders.

The program starts by locating bikes on campus that appear abandoned. Anyone can report an abandoned bike; the best people to notify are the building manager, the University Police, or Freewheel! Here are some tell-tale signs that the bike may be abandoned:

  • the chain or other components are very RUSTY
  • the tire is “TACO” (bent out of shape
  • there are major parts missing (handlebars, wheels, seatposts)
  • the bike is laying on the ground or suspended at a weird angle…

Abandoned bikes are being tagged with conspicuous hot pink tags that inform the owner (if there is still an owner) that their bike must be removed within two weeks from the tagging date, or it will be removed by the University Police/Facilities & Services.

When the bike gets removed, it is transferred to the Freewheel Bicycling Collective. We will hold on to the bike and assess which parts of the bike will be recycled and which may be reused in our shop. Whenever possible, the bikes will be refurbished and granted to members of the campus community (students, faculty, & staff) that are in need of a bike. These bikes are granted on a first come-first serve basis. For more information on any aspect of this program or to report the location of abandoned bikes, contact the Freewheel Coordinator at fwcoord – at- gmail -dot- com

Happy Bicycling!