Today is my daughter’s 5th birthday and we got her a new bike. TL;DR? We settled on a ByK E-250. Want to know why? Read on…

As always, I did a bunch of research. One article I came across and revisited several times was Why You Should Never Buy a 12″ Bike! (with a few exceptions). Like everyone should be, I was skeptical of such a bold claim. Some might even call it clickbait. But I kept coming back to that article because of some valid points.

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I told Jules that once he learned to ride a bike, I’d buy him whatever bike he wanted. A quick conversation with his cousin led him to start looking for bikes made of gold or diamond 🙄 Then at the beginning of April, Jules dedicated himself to learning to balance with no pedals on. He spent about 2 hours on one day, and a couple of hours the next and had balancing down. On the 3rd day, he asked me to put the pedals on and he took off!

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In 2011 my family and I took a vacation to Three Lakes, Wisconsin (near Rhinelander). While I was there I was able to take my new mountain bike out for a spin at the Anvil Trails.

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Normally I write about these rides before they happen, but this year we went old school. We printed over 1,000 of the flyer above and distributed them through Fridley’s elementary schools. I was excited to see it on the front of the take-home packet when my son brought it home.

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Milk crates were surely one of the first accessories ever strapped to a bicycle. It’s the simplest way to add significant carrying capacity to any bike. One of the first things I did when I got my bike was add a rack and a milk crate – but I wasn’t quite smart about it.

I wanted the crate to be removable, so rather than securing it with zip ties, I recycled some old tire tubes and inter-wove them with the rack and the holes in the crate. It seemed pretty solid, so I thought I’d make a trip to the liquor store. The problem with the tubes is they’re made of rubber, so they stretch. They stretch a little too much for a beer-laden milk crate.

When I got out of the saddle, rocking the bike ever so slightly was enough to stretch the tubes, and send my beers flying. I burst some Surly’s halfway home. Lesson learned.
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