Fifteen years ago I was a BMX pro riding around Austin with a single minded focus on BMX. I’d spend all day on my bike searching the city for the next street riding spot but hardly even notice I was on a bike, thinking more about the potential of the spots I’d find than enjoying the ride there. On one ride I found a rad old 1950’s grandma cruiser hanging out of a dumpster. I dug it out and dragged it home unsure of why I’d done it. I was so completely focused on BMX at this point in my life that I was actually embarrassed to be seen riding a non-BMX bike. A few makeshift repairs later I had it rolling as my grocery getter. On my first cruise I had an epiphany; this was FUN! That old cruiser reduced cycling to it’s most simple element… just rolling. There was no desire to push myself on that bike and there was no point trying to see how fast it could go. It wasn’t a work out, it wasn’t a challenge and it wasn’t a means to any end. It was simply rolling around on a bike and that was all it needed to be.
Not to get too sentimental about everything but at it’s heart even top level BMX riding is built around that “feeling”. Learning to jump, and do tricks and push ourselves is just a next step (and next and next) built on that magic feeling of “just” riding a bike. I imagine it’s the same for pro road cyclists and mountain bikers too. You fall in love with the simplicity and then as your skill level grows you push your bike further and further and pour more of yourself into riding until it is anything but simple. For me hopping on that granny cruiser was the seed that has become Fairdale Bikes. It reminded me that bikes are a great experience on their own. I can certainly appreciate bikes as a “sport” or even as an “art” but that’s not for everyone (and shouldn’t be all the time for any of us). Some people don’t want to jump their bikes off houses or worry about their wattage output. Too often those people who just want to “ride around” are forgotten by the cycling world with it’s competitive driven industry. Racing and performance are great but we wanted to take a step back, to remember why we got into this in the first place.
With Fairdale we wanted to create the vehicles, literally I guess, to help you experience some of the love of cycling we have enjoyed our whole lives. If you are a seasoned cyclist we hope to remind you of the fun that can be found in the simplicity of cycling. If you are a new rider then we hope our simple bikes will do all you need them to do without bogging you down in the complicated things you may or may not grow into. We want them to simply work so that you can enjoy a cruise whenever you want. Ride one of our simple single speed Coasters around and enjoy yourself. If you start riding it hard as a replacement for a car or pushing yourself as a speed machine you may grow out of it. You may even graduate to a carbon fiber race bike that Fairdale doesn’t make. If so, move on with all our support. We’re not trying to make every bike for everyone in every situation, we’re trying to make bikes that will help you fall in love with bikes. -Taj