Broom Wagon Cyclery
Broom Wagon Cyclery has been open for four days when I first walk in. But they sold a bike on their second day, so that's a good start, right? Nestled in the hodgepodge neighbourhood of Danforth and Pape, this new bike shop is directed at the everyday city cyclist.
In short, the focus is on urban bikes and the daily commuter that rides them.
Opened by Marty Vanderhoek, who was the sales manager at Urbane Cyclist, and Theo Tsimbidis, the shop's mechanic, they have high hopes for servicing the cycling needs of Greek Town. Both guys are pretty laid back. Having both just left their long-term bike shop gigs, they exude a mixture of child-like giddiness and restrained uncertainty of having just opened their own shop. That's fair.
Broom Wagon is the nickname for the vehicle that follows riders at the Tour de France and picks up those who just can't continue or who have gotten too far behind the time limit. The people like me. "It [the name] really fit with what we're trying to do here, which is to help people with their cycling needs," says Marty, alluding to tune-ups, accessories or a new ride. "We're here for the neighbourhood."
As you'd expect given the focus, there's a strong city-bike roster with brands like Opus and KHS. Despite the commuter focus, you'll also find racers, mountain bikes, kids bikes, and hybrids here as well.
And in case your ride breaks down, Theo, who has six years of bike mechanic experience, is your man. He does full service, which is really just a fancy way of saying whatever problem you may have; he's got you covered. "From the ground up, I wanted the shop to be full service and to have every tool that was necessary to do every possible thing," says Theo.
Any last advice you may have for Toronto's everyday bike commuter, I ask? Marty doesn't skip a beat: "Always assume the car doesn't see you." Well put.
Who the store caters to: the everyday city cyclist
Bike price range: $400-$1,000 (sweet spot at $600)
Service capabilities: Full service
The tune-up: The "Mini-Tune" is $30 and it covers the basics like brake adjustments, bolt tightening, lubrication, tire inflation. The "Mid-Tune" is all adjustments to all parts, a general clean, inspection, and more. They have a "Mega-Tune" coming soon.
Writing and photography by Ryan Bolton