Here’s a little something about me: I love two wheeled vehicles. Motorcycles, scooters, bicycles, etc. So when a buddy told me about Austin Bike Farm, my ears perked up and I had to check the place out. It was right up my alley.
Leaving Dallas for North Austin
After working in bike shops for 13 years, Owen Weber — with the support of his wife, Christie — opted to start his own bicycle business.
He did, but he added a twist. The cool thing about Bike Farm is that it mixes bike sales, repair and salvage yard. When the Webers moved the business from Dallas to Austin five years ago, they settled on the corner of Brentwood St and Shirley Ave and have no plans to move. (In case you’re wondering where Brentwood is, it’s just north of Threadgill’s North and intersects Lamar Blvd.)
Since planting roots in our bike friendly city, the Webers have added three full time staff members. Mike Gonzalez, Shawn Bonifay and Wes Grumbles are in it for more than a paycheck. They put their money where their mouths are and commute via bicycle. Gonzalez and Bonifay ride to Austin Bike Farm from Riverside and Ben White respectively. That’s a long haul and a testament to their two wheeled commitment.
Austin Bike Farm Is a Grease Monkey’s Playground
I have this affection for jalopy cars and bikes pieced together with spare and junk parts. So when I discovered that Weber and his team have a plethora of used bicycle parts, my imagination took off and my heart danced a jig.
As a test, I asked Shawn Bonifay if he had a 26″ rim with a coaster brake. “Sure,” he replied. “Do you want new or used?” Touché.
There’s something cool about getting your own hands greasy and grimy — cracking open a coaster brake hub and replacing the brake shoes and bearings, swapping out the chain ring and cog for that perfect gear ratio and cutting chain to make it all fit and roll like the Duke boys with Roscoe on their tail.
Austin Bike Farm had me salivating. I have a primer black, rusty beach cruiser needing that coaster brake hub and I have a chrome BMX bike in pieces needing a variety of accoutrements to be road worthy. Based on my experience, anyone looking for parts for a project or repair has a good chance of finding what they need at Bike Farm.
Austin Bike Farm: Full Service and Sales
If you aren’t of my dirty-hands-spare-parts mindset, don’t worry. Bike Farm sells new and used bicycles. They also have a full repair shop.
Actually, Bike Farm is only one of two places in town that sells used parts and refurbished bicycles, and they have some beauties. I saw a 1980’s GT BMX race bike rocking some mag wheels, several commuter style bikes and even an old adult sized tricycle.
Owen Weber, Mike Gonzalez, Shawn Bonifay and Wes Grumbles are happy to help customers with sales, repairs or to just hang out for a while. They even have a pretty cool freestyle ramp in the back that folks are welcome to try out. I took my stepson with me. When Shawn sensed he was bored, he handed him a bicycle and told him to have a good time. He did.
The ramp was built two months ago by James “Shep” Shepherd. Shepherd has been instrumental in the local bicycle scene, helping build the 9th St dirt jumps and cofounding the iconic Austin bicycle company Homeless Bikes in the early 1990’s.
Follow Your Folly
There are plenty of opportunities for customers at Austin Bike Farm. From new and refurbished bicycles, to used and new parts and even repair services, they have a little something for everybody. You know, it’s even a good starting point for a father and son project. Bicycles provide an easy way to teach the next generation about general mechanics and maintenance. I have had fun teaching my stepson how to turn wrenches on our bikes and I look forward to more projects with him.
Austin Bike Farm is open Monday-Saturday from 11 AM-7 PM. Owen, Mike, Wes and Shawn would be happy to help you follow your folly.
@ElDavidThomas wants to know:
What kind of bicycle do you have?