Bike Maintenance Classes that is....
There's an organization in Pittsburgh called "Free Ride." Their Mission statement goes like this: "Free Ride is a collective dedicated to recycling bicycles, offering mechanical education, and promoting bicycling by helping people of all ages and backgrounds obtain, maintain, and repair bicycles."
They have a really cool program where you can volunteer at the shop--cleaning, helping others, repairing bikes for sale, and so on--and earn a bike. You and a volunteer choose a bike, decide on a price, then work enough hours to pay for the bike (each hour is worth $8.) There are a few rules, but they're not hard rules!
One of the other services they offer are bike maintenance classes. I just found out I got into the first 6 week session of the year (sessions are limited to the first 12 folks who register!!!!) The session is $75 (two classes are required if you want to do the Adult Earn a Bike) and covers a lot of really great things:
Week 1 – Tubes, tires and flats
Week 2 – Hubs and bearings
Week 3 – Wheel truing
Week 4 – The Drivetrain (chains, chainrings, cranks, bottom brackets)
Week 5 – Brakes, cables and housings
Week 6 – Derailleurs
I'm taking these classes for a few reasons. I love to tinker, am fairly mechanically inclined, I love my bike, my LBS is an hour+ away, I may want to earn a mountain bike, and I really want to help build/rebuild/repair recycled bikes for folks. Pus, I just love being around like minded individuals.
They have Advance Classes too. I may take the Wheel Building 1 and Wheel Building 2 classes after the Sunday Series Classes are over.
Just wanted to share my excitement!!!