Silver Cycles, 9330 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland is a bicycle store located in a busy strip mall on a main thoroughfare. Silver Cycles sells a competent selection of bicycles and bicycle accessories. It caters to commuters and racers. Last time I was there with my son, he was comparing three models of fold-up bikes. I was surprised to see three models of such an esoteric item, but this is city life, and space-saving, easy-to-carry, fold-up bikes are apparently pretty handy. I have never actually bought a bicycle or accessories from Silver Cycles, though. What brought me to Silver Cycles twice in the past six months is repairs.
Emergency repairs, to be specific. Now a word here about “emergency repairs.” By this, I don’t mean I was stuck somewhere with a disabled bicycle. No, these “emergencies” were a result of my own procrastination. Emergency number one involved my nine year old daughter’s toy store bike. Its brakes weren’t working properly and the handlebar stem needed tightening. My husband had brought it to another quality bike store which snobbishly refused to deal with such low-grade merchandise, surmising that it was unfixable. From there it sat at our house, untouched, until the day before my daughter was scheduled to ride in community bike race. By now, getting it fixed was an “emergency,” and I hauled it into Silver Cycles to see what they could do.
Although Silver Cycles had other repairs in progress, they agreed to take a look at my daughter’s bike. No rude comments about its inferior status. No negative prognostications about its repairability. The mechanic looked it over and began working on it. It took about 20 minutes, but he fixed the brakes and tightened the handlebar stem. All for under $20. My daughter used the bike in the race the following day and both brakes and handlebars performed admirably.
Meanwhile, my son has decided that he is too mature for his own toy store quality bike and has begun riding my 20 year old Trek while he saves for the bike of his dreams. One day shortly after he began riding my bike, the inner tube on the back tire blew out. He told me, and I pretty much ignored it, knowing he could ride his Dad’s bike for awhile. But then came a Saturday when he announced plans to take a long bike ride the following day, and he invited Dad to come along. They couldn’t ride the same bike, so it looked like we needed another “emergency” repair job.
Silver Cycles was crowded that Saturday afternoon, but the mechanic told me that he could take a look at it in about 20 minutes. We spent a few minutes scrutinizing the folding bikes, then headed to the tropical ice cream shop a few doors down and treated ourselves to ice cream. When we returned, the bike was almost ready. After less than a five minute wait, we paid for the repair, again less than $20, and were on our way out the door. Several weeks earlier, my husband had paid $5 more for a similar repair on his bike at the snooty bike store and waited longer for service. So when we need repairs again, we will be heading to Silver Cycles. And next time, I will try not to procrastinate so as not to foist off any more unnecessary “emergencies” on Silver Cycles’ accommodating staff.
9330 Georgia Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20910