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Tom's Bike Shop So-Cal

1973-74 with my Friend and sometime hack pilot John Derosier

With Tome Derosier Sr (RIP) a good man and one of the early guys who helped change the dinosaur bikes into sleek lightweight racers

Not sure of the year but it was before Trasher became an actual "magazine"

I ended up working and running the BMX team there

I'll never forget the words "You $#%^ hang around here so much, I might as well give you a job" smile.gif

I have that issue, that's Cab on the cover. It was probably late 81 or early 82. It was an actual magazine, all 30 pages of it. huh.gif
Jon Rotten
I still hang out at my old bike shop. about 60 hrs a week!!!. Andersons in Manteca. est 1975.
Randy comes by sometimes! I think he got his est score there!
Is that where you've been Jon? I was wondering...

I love hanging out at the bike shop, sometimes Jon has to escort me out...

BITD we had San Jose BMX of course. We were right on Capital Expressway and Vistapark - right by Baskin Robbins. After the races we would go to the pizza parlor next to the shop - the Toot and Totem II and they would let us watch race videos on the big screen, then we'd play asteroids and pac man, then head out the parking lot for a big game of 'foot down'.

Great shop, all BMX and awesome hangout.

no pics unfortunately - just memories.

What's est?
The Village peddler in Crystal lake, IL was my local bike shop. No pics of it, but it's still there with the same owner Jeff. We would ride there daily BITD to check out the cool stuff and maybe buy a sticker. When I would visit my dad in Rockford my favorite shop was Kegels. I used to go to the Haro shows there every summer.
Burbank Schwinn, 79th and Cicero just outside Chicago. I got just about everything there. Then we eventually got cars and we'd go to a few other shops too, but I'd always go there first.

Here's a shot of a Haro show out in the parking lot. It was on the other end of that strip of stores there.

Here's the other end of the lot. If it were a little more to the right the shop's back there. I know I have pix of it, just not uploaded.

Still have these from there. I picked out every part for it and ordered it there.

That bike as it looked a year or so later, re-painted and some swapped out parts.

I sold that Trick Star to get this one:

Then that got stolen, which totally sucked, but I got some insurance money and was able to get a Team Sport.

As a younger kid I used to go to a shop called Tri-County Pedal Power, it was pretty small and went out of business though before I was really old enough to go there on my own.

My LBS that I raced for was Action Bikes in San Antonio that was started and owned by Jim Sanders. It was later sold and relocated where it is still open today.
Interesting. I thought there would be a few more responses.

Maybe it was different for me but I will always remember people like Tom Derosier, Steve Rink, Jim Melton, Ralph Mundia and many others who went out of their way to help out a young BMXer who went into their respective shops.
QUOTE (BMX2112 @ Jul 17 2008, 05:49 AM) *
My LBS that I raced for was Action Bikes in San Antonio that was started and owned by Jim Sanders. It was later sold and relocated where it is still open today.

Ha that's the shop i used to go to. I would love going grocery shopping with my mom on Saturday, stoked to go to Albertson's so i could run to the bike shop. Fun times. Jim Sanders ruled. I must have drove that guy crazy.
What about

Either West coast or Midwest?

Reilley, it is great you started this thread, as I was going to have to do it in a week or so for my article in the September BMXer on Bike Shop Sponsorships.

Nice one! I'm sure it's a "Hot Topic" in the making.


QUOTE (gts340 @ Jul 17 2008, 03:31 AM) *
The Village peddler in Crystal lake, IL was my local bike shop. No pics of it, but it's still there with the same owner Jeff. We would ride there daily BITD to check out the cool stuff and maybe buy a sticker. When I would visit my dad in Rockford my favorite shop was Kegels. I used to go to the Haro shows there every summer.

Well gts Im happy to report to you that Kegels is still here and going strong. Im origanlly from Loves Park so my shop was Bobs, still there but Bob sold it years ago, its now on its third owner. Bob actually relocated to Capron IL. opened a shop called Side by Side, he passed away a few years ago, but his wife has kept the doors open since.
My favorite shop was All In One Bicycles in West Jordan Utah. A great place, where the owner didn't mind me hanging out there every day. The owner closed the shop and died in a car crash not too long after.
The big boy in our area was Bicycle World. They were still around until a few years ago. I think they finally fell victim to the cheap bike phenomenon at Wal Mart.
Though the later, Midwest, Beavers was my hometown shop, the two shops that always got me bouncing off the walls were (in order of bounciness) Advanced Trickery in Glenview, IL and Sundance Cycle in Bloomingdale, IL.

AT was, what we might call today, more "soulful" (it was a small shop, one aisle wide. on each wall were two rows of peg boards, one row screwed to the wall, one row on the floor propped against the top row...situated this way so all of it could be pulled off the walls, loaded into the team bus and transported to races). But on those boards were zip-tied some of the newest, most trick stuff possible, at prices the other dealers could not even buy for (dealer/distributor politics aside, this was pretty amazing for a 12 year old). It was on these walls that the first flight cranks in Chicagoland hung, the first graphites, the first of pretty much ever hot part you'd want. No complete bikes on display (not even sure if they carried completes). And on the only counter in the place (where the register was) was a stack (not a nice display, a STACK) of the new BMXA--usually as other shops were just getting the previous month's up on their wall. By the end of Saturday, that stack would be all-but gone. Of course, Advanced Trickery had a dominant national team, with something like 8 out of 10 riders running national plates of one stripe or another. The shop met a terrible demise in a fire which, to this day, is shrouded in controversy and mystery.

Whereas Sundance would be better described as a BMX Country was in the squeaky clean suburbs, nestled in a nice strip mall which had a pretty decent hot dog joint. They had every complete bike and frameset known to man or beast (bought my 79 quad and OM there), as well as every part, color, variation and size ever put into a UPS box. They had air conditioning. They had HoTT Powder Puffs in residence, who were nice, nice looking, and in the lead all the time at the near-by Itasca BMX Track. Being a former AT loyalist and "honorary support team member" (yes, my racing was THAT bad), going to Sundance was kind of like going into the other team's locker room. But after AT burned, it was the only game in town with 180 and 185 flights, in stock... Right now.

So I got me some Vera's leathers and donned the Orange Black and White (for one season). The team was dominant on the local and regional scene (my participation notwithstanding), and had more than a few national-caliber guys as well, some of whom graduated up to the factory ranks. Jim McMahon, the founder/owner was a nice guy, and was always there to help if you needed it. Sundance was 20+ miles from my house, so there was no taking a casual ride up there. Mom stepped and did the driving, and was very understanding about cooling her heels for three or four hours while the business of BMX was conducted and her money was spent on an upgraded stem, or paid of those "killer new Comp IIIs."

It was mom doin the driving, so it was mom's soundtrack (at least until the Walkman came out). The song "Sailing" by Christopher Cross still calls an indelible memory of the day I got my first Quad. Everything was possible. Of course, the following week, those blue Tuff Is just had to go.


Freewheeler Bike shop in Grand Rapids, MI I still get up to GR once a year and I always drop in to see how Gordie is doing.
I must also add my Northern California connection. The original Wes' BMX in Felton CA. Small shop but years ahead of most of the shops I hade seen. I remember riding my bike past the Redwoods and up highway 9 from Santa Cruz.

Wes' was the first place I saw some of the exotics (to me)

The bike had a few of what we now consider holy grails. It was only 10 miles from Santa Cruz to Felton but you had to climb a few hills. Never forget bombing down the highway into Santa Cruz and hopping over the railroad tracks. A couple of roadies saw us doing this and were actually clapping as we sped past
Ramon a.k.a Beaner
I grew up in un-incorporated Los Angeles 90022 between East Los Angeles, Montebello, Monterey Park, and City of Commerce, my bike Shops were Tony's Schwinn on Atlantic and Olympic close to the Weber's Bread (Hey Joe!), Dennison's Schwinn on Whittier (Hey Bill Blake!), Rudy's Schwinn Shop on Beverly, and Dynamics in Pico Rivera (Hey John Vargas!) Spent many a day hour etc. at those awesome shops which are now only a shadow of what they used to be...

Kind of makes me sad.
This is a great thread.
In Rhode Island my favorite was Northeast BMX. Absolutely awesome shop. Also DJ handelbars was a cool shop too. Man, I miss Northeast BMX.
Gary Mason WWR
The first race bike I got as a kid came from schwinn cyclery in Newark De. It was a sx 100 mag scrambler . Replaced it with a Rampar r-9 . Then walked into Wooden Wheels bike shop & started building a Torker Mx . I recall a bike that used to hang in the big oak tree in front of the store . In the front window Reid had a custom Thruster Judge with blue durace cranks . I wish Reid would come on vintage he would have a ton of photo's . I started racing for wwr after the worlds that year & never left . The shop has moved down the road a little but has tons of space for bikes . If bmx takes off again I'm sure Tom will bring back a team .
In the Sacramento, CA area in the mid-70's the shops to go to for BMX stuff were Deno's, Uncle Wiggley's, Light's Cyclery and best of all Larry's BMX in Rancho Cordova. Larry's was BMX only BITD. I bought both my Webco and Redline squareback at Larry's. The first straight tube BMX frame I ever saw was hanging on the wall at Uncle Wiggley's. It was an A&A hardtail and they wanted $39 for it!
Woody's Hot Rods
Como Bike Shop on High Street in Columbus, Ohio. I still remember that brown PK Ripper(among others) hanging on the wall. Later on Hilliard Schwinn was the spot. Should've bought that Chrome JMC DY they had on the wall when i saw it. I went back to get it a few weeks later and it was gone. The shop I go to now in Hilliard, Action Cycle Worx, is pretty cool. The guy has a bunch of old school bikes hanging around. Torker, Roger Decoster, Redline, Kuwahara E.T., etc. He's got a Hutch in the back and a Matthews Moxie and a Free Agent. The owner Kevin is a cool cat.
Surprised none of the San Diego guys piped in with the legendary "Wheels n' Things" ran by Sandy Finkleman (RIP)

Another amazing shop that had EVERYTHING bmx..
Richard Vogt - bmxmountainbiker
My first BMX bike came from Fred's Bikes and Hobbies in Woodland Hills, California.

But the shop that did the most for me was Russell Rheaume's Wheel House in Long Beach, Mississippi. From 1978 on, if my brother and I mentioned that it was hot, Russell got it for us. Torkers, PK Rippers, Pattersons, Redline and Profile cranks, Phil Wood and Bullseye hubs... Bill Walters leathers made our custom Wheel House racing uniforms...

When we started a little local track, Russell donated the trophies... when my brother and I started a trick team that went to schools to do demos, Russell got us frame co-sponsors, and I got the local Mountain Dew bottler on board... I partnered with Russell to sell Mongoose Californians in the classified ads of Boys Life magazine until Mongoose decided all bikes had to be sold assembled (preferably by a professional bike shop blink.gif )... we started a little mail order catalog and distributed them wherever we raced in the southeast...

I haven't seen Russell in 15 years... but I talked to him on the phone recently... I hope he had as much fun with BMX as we had racing, riding, and working with him at The Wheel House... smile.gif

Richard Vogt
Flint area rippers lived at Grand Blanc Schwinn it was called the Wooden Horse before that,then Gary Chennett changed it. He did sooooomuch for Bmx in Eastern Michigan.Fat Eddys was the other shop we would hit up after Gary told us we were taking up space. They were both special places to pick on the groms or givem wedgeeeees.Those guys put up with so much crap.
My first bmx bike, a Rampar R10, came from Vienna Cycles in Vienna, VA. I used to go in there & drool over the Supergoose they had in the front window. I can't remember the name of the other cool shop down in Fairfax across from the Starlit track. They were a full on Schwinn dealer & had a couple sweet Stings in there.

Our "local" bmx-only shop was the infamous Rockville BMX in Rockville, MD. It was the coolest place to go hang out. Jay, Scooby, Spike, & the crew were great people. They did so much for the east coast bmx scene & brought in all the cool trick teams during the summer. Always had the newest, raddest stuff in stock & had a back room full of Vans in every color combo imagineable.
Maurice Meyer
We had a few good shops in the city but for me it was all about Aji's. My older brother is in this photo from 1977:

We had some adventures riding across town to go there when we were kids. Got chased a few times but never had to give up the G-ride. Never raced on a track but I never lost in the streets! Ha.

Aji was cool and co sponsored me when the freestyle stuff started going. Long before I got any coverage or anything. He took all those kids in the picture to the local track on the weekends. Great guy.

I still have a jersey and a some of these prism stickers.


I raced for the Wheeler Dealer bike shop team in Florida. I think all you had to do was buy a jersey and you were on "the team".
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