Lots of us come from what you might call "mixed" families. He rides a bike; she doesn't want to brave the mean streets. Or Mom and Dad are fanatics who met on TOSRV 25 years ago, and the kids just want to get as far away from that as they can. Or--just as likely--the kids are car-free bikers, and Mom and Dad just don't understand.
We mention all that because the holidays are upon us, and gift-giving to cyclists can be especially difficult--especially if you're not up on the gear. So Great Lakes Courier asked local bike shops to help us out, and three of them--Century Cycles, with its shops in Rocky River, Peninsula, and [Medina]; Spin Bikes of Lakewood; And HubBub Custom Bicycles, of Chesterland, graciously obliged with a musette bag full of ideas.
Performance-oriented accessory: Garmin [Edge] 500 Price: $250 What makes this so great? "If you're looking for a way to track your performance, the 500 is compatible with all ANT+ HR [heart rate] monitors, and power meters. It works well with strava, and will save all your workouts in the unit so you can go back and track your performance. Plus, being GPS based, it's easily transferred between multiple bikes." --Spin Bike Shop "Everyone want to share these days, and nothing makes it easier to share and track your rides than a Garmin GPS. Compatible with the most popular fitness web sites, such as Strava, MapMyRide, and Endomondo, plus Garmin's own Connect. Moves from bike to bike without any re-calibration needed." --Century Cycles
Safety-Oriented Accessories: Cygolight Expilion 600 Price: $120 What makes this so great? "As the days get shorter, most people want to continue to ride if possible. For the most part, though, people have inadequate lighting systems. Not only are blinkies not as good as they could be to be seen by cars, they do not illuminate the road surface at all, making potential road hazards invisible until you hit them. Plus, a light such as this allows off-road riding to continue safely as well!" --Spin Bike Shop
HubBub Helmet Mirror Price: Two for $58 What makes this so great? The HubBub Helmet mirror is a great stocking stuffer and an important safety item for every cyclist. The mirror fits most helmets and is guaranteed for 5 years. Our holiday special is 2 mirrors for $58 with free shipping through December 23, 2012. The mirror is available in either gray or white.
NiteRider Solas Taillight Price: $44.99 What makes this so great? "At 2 watts, it's the brightest taillight out there. Like most taillights, it's got mounts for your seatpost, frame, or pocket/bag clip. Charge it by plugging it into the USB port of your PC or Mac--no batteries to use up and throw away, so it's environmentally friendly." --Century Cycles
Winter weather clothing item: Specialized Defrosters Price: $180 What makes this so great? Ask any serious winter rider what gets cold first, and they'll likely tell you their feet. Sure, sure covers work to a degree, but they aren't water-proof, and simply not as warm, either. The defrosters combine serious water proofing, and heavy insulation to keep your toes warm and dry long after your neoprene shoe covers fail you." --Spin Bike Shop
Showers Pass Double Century EX Rain Jacket Price: $159.99 What makes this so great? "2.5-layer waterproof breathable fabric keeps you warm and dry inside no matter what it's doing outside, and it packs down small enough to stuff into a jersey pocket or handlebar bag when the sun comes out." --Century Cycles
Service: Century Cycles Tune-Up Service Package #2 Price: $99.99 What makes this so great? A tune-up is recommended every year, and this package also gives you the option of replacing your brake and shifter cables (which is recommended every couple of years, or more often if you ride in bad weather) OR a complete cleaning of your bicycle's drivetrain. Either option will make your bike work like new (or even better!), and this is a great deal for your annual tune-up. Don't want to choose and prefer to have both options done? Then choose Century Cycles Tune-Up Service Package #3 for $134.99.
Something to help you look forward to Spring: Michelin Pro4 Tires Price: $75 ea. What makes this so great? "After a whole winter on heavy, stiff, slow, flat resistant tires...not much feels better than some fresh, new, supple rubber. The Pro4 line from Michelin continues to be at the forefront of bike tire tech, offering better grip, lower rolling resistance, and nicer feel than almost anything on the market." --Spin Bike Shop
Century Cycles Gift Card Price: any What makes this so great? "Nobody does the choosing for you! Century Cycles asked Northeast Ohio bicyclists which cycling gift they like best and gift card was the #1 vote-getter.