Maybe you’ve had a look at my other articles and noticed that I’m pretty big on the utility side of things when it comes to bicycles. Maybe you’ve even thought that you should look into a bike that will open up the same sort of possibilities for you and your daily needs (by that I mean a bike that’s not marketed to magically transform you into a racing champion). Maybe you’ve even purchased one of these bikes and now you’re sort of overwhelmed by all the possibilities of using it. Well, the first step is usually to get a rack for the back, probably aluminum but hopefully steel, and a set of panniers, which are probably Ortlieb or Arkel since that’s what I see most of the time. If you’ve made it that far, congratulations! You’re way ahead of the game already and your basic commuting/grocery/errand running needs can all be done on a fun form of transportation. The world of loading up your bike is bigger still though, and the next step is front loading.
Local Maker Interview, vol. 1: Swift Industries
Though the big fish of the bicycle industry just seem to be getting bigger, more and more people are taking their own path and building their own place in the world of bicycles and bicycle accessories by designing and making their own products domestically. In answer to this, consumers are welcoming these local makers with enthusiastic appreciation and fueling what amounts to a sea change in the way manufacturing and commerce are done. This is my first installment of a series that will put a spotlight on some of these people, right here in my little local city of Seattle. These people actually design/fabricate/craft actual things themselves, and I’m very glad they do. These people are an extremely important (and growing) part of our national bicycle culture.