Classic & Vintage - Does anyone remember taping blocks of wood to the pedals?
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10-21-07, 12:17 AM
This ought to bring out the fogies:).My first bike was a 1965 Raleigh single speed 20" tires boys bike.It was too big for me(I was 5) so my dad taped cut pieces of 2x4 to the pedals with electric tape.I had to stand on a cinder block to swing my leg over the seat.I pushed off and rode for about an hour(because I didn't know how I was going to stop:))I eventually just drove into the ditch and fell over.I remember it like it was yesterday:):)
I never did it, but I remember seeing it done quite often as a kid in the '50's.
10-21-07, 01:21 AM
My word that brings back memories :) My Dad did it to the pedals on my tricycle when I was a kiddie.
10-21-07, 01:33 AM
I eventually just drove into the ditch and fell over
I can just picture that perfectly :lol:
I think we really need to reconsider this kind of frugal and responsible practice. I'm seeing families today go through 3-4 bikes before the kids a teen and they always buy new. That means there is a colossal number of kids bikes at the dump (and there are).
10-21-07, 06:13 AM
Ouch, Yeah that brings back painful memories. Yes, I had pieces of wood attached to my 26" Baronia. My mom was so frugal, she decided I only needed one bike in my life. So at the age of 8, my folks purchased a full sized bike. My uncle kindly taught me how to ride. But it was a losing proposition. I couldn't stop the bike unless I was near a curb so I could touch the ground. I needed the blocks on the pedals and the seat all the way down. Any attempt to stradle the top tube was severely painful:rolleyes: After several accidents and almost being hit by a car, my dad took the bike away and borrowed a girls 20" bike from my cousin. By the time I was 11, I was back on the 26 incher, without the blocks.
With my kids, each went through several bikes, some new some used. But I refused to let them ride a bike that was too large. It's way too dangerous.
I still get people coming into the shop looking for pedal blocks. You can buy commercially produced pedal blocks. Theyre only $5.00. While it's more frugal to utilize old scraps of wood and duct tape, to-day people would rather spend the money, than be seen with something home-made.
To-day, the average kid goes through a bicycle every 2-3 years. It's not necessarily because they are growing, but because they do not take care of it. When I was young, a new bicycle was a major expenditure for my parents and something to treasured by a kid. We washed, waxed and lubed them regularly. If you went somewhere, it was on your bicycle. The bicycle has lost its meaning and value with to-day's kids. With the proliferation of new entertainment and hobbies, the bicyle has been become something old and unexciting. And urban sprawl means kids are being driven everywhere, rather than relying on the bicycle. In modern society, the bicycle has become trivial.
It's astonishing what some people spend their money on these days. Even the the lower income people are seen buying coffee at Starbucks. When I was a kid, my parents made their own coffee. And I mowed the grass, not some lawn service. These days, image is everything, no matter how hollow it is.
10-21-07, 07:18 AM
My parents started me off on a 20" girls bike that they bought used. After I learned to ride, my sister learned about a week later and laid claim to my bike. So, I started riding my mom's full sized bike by standing to pedal. It wasn't long before my parents bought me a new Huffy Cheetah Slick. I was totally confused, because it wasn't my birthday or Christmas and they weren't getting anything for my sisters.
I bought the blocks for my kids' tricycle, but mainly because they came with a treaded rubber sleeve to hold them on. I didn't spend a lot on their bikes when they were younger, but since they took care of their bikes, we were able to sell them for enough to cover most of the cost of the C&V bikes that replaced them.
10-21-07, 07:22 AM
My sentiments exactly...as far as lawnmowing, that is how I made my spending money to buy bikes and parts. Now it is illegal (at least around here) to hire a neighborhood kid to mow your lawn. And I am sure social services will be more than willing to call it child abuse if a parent were to force a child to perform dangerous labor:rolleyes:
My 2 had multiple bicycles, but they were always handed down to the next one in line and when they outgrew them they went to someone else that could use them.
Never heard of pedal blocks before, I must admit. We used to ride bikes that were too big for our age too, but 'through the frame' (right leg under the top tube) - NOT very comfortable, but hey, the things you did to ride a 'grown up' bike!
10-21-07, 09:09 AM
On Christmas day in 1951 or 52, my 3 Spd Raleigh Sports already had pedal blocks taped on when I first set eyes on it. I rode it by starting out from the bottom step of our front porch or any tall curb would also work. A few years later, when I grew into it & removed the blocks, my little brother rode it using that right leg "through the frame" technique. Looked pretty funny but he got around the neighborhood. One year, we rode all Summer with a broken shift cable (stuck in 3rd) & became fairly strong cyclists by the time it was repaired. Don
10-21-07, 04:50 PM
When I was in Primary School I can remember kids in my class riding huge English ladies roadster bicycles around our quiet rural neighbourhood. The sight of a small child rising and falling with their feet on wide rubber block pedals at the ends of those looooong roadster crank arms while being almost lost in the valley between steering head and the seat tube is a memory that makes me smile even now.
10-21-07, 05:47 PM
You can even buy rubber pedal blocks today. My Dad screwed blocks to my 24" Raleigh 3-speed. Unrelated, Holoman-Moody screwed wooden blocks to Mario Andretti's 1967 Ford Galixie, and Andretti went on to win the Daytona 500 that year.
"Fogies"? Easy there, sonny!:D
That's how I learned to ride a two-wheeler.
And I concur with T-Mar's sentiments as well. Most of my kids bikes have come from the dump. I go over them, adjust and replace what's needed, and get double duty as my older one outgrows a bike and passes it to my younger one. When the younger one outgrows it it gets re-habbed again and donated to some local group that can use it.
On another note, I wouldn't trust my neighbor's kids to cross a street without supervision, much less mow my lawn.
10-21-07, 08:30 PM
I know what you mean about the kids bikes.I've saved 20-30 from the trash.Most of them in perfect condition.I fixed up the ones that needed work and gave them all to single moms and low income families.
These people's kids grow out of their bike and they're too lazy to try and find a new home for it.They just pitch it out.It's because Wally World sells them for $40-$50 and the parents like nice,new,and shiny for their kids even though the kid wouldn't know the difference.They'd be stoked just because they have a bike:)
10-21-07, 10:47 PM
My dad strapped blocks of wood to my pedals until I was big enough to reach them. I suggested the same trick to my Godson's parents, because he can't quite reach the pedals of the tricycle I gave him. :)
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