WICHITA — The Bike Cave, which Michael James started a few years back in his College Hill basement and garage, is going mainstream with its own place.
“It’s always been the long-term goal to get to where we’re in a retail space,” James says.
The shop opens Wednesday in part of the Notes and Noises record shop on Pattie just south of Douglas Avenue.
The Bike Cave is a nonprofit organization that exists to promote biking and help more people do it through economical repairs.
Bike owners can pay $5 to rent bench space and specialized tools to fix their own bikes, or they can hire someone at the shop.
“We’re not trying to steal business from any of the retail shops,” James says.
He says a lot of shop owners are supportive of the Bike Cave.
“We’re really trying to exist for people who aren’t riding but maybe could be,” James says.
Board member Christy Oeur says if someone pays $50 for a bike, they’re not likely to spend $50 to get it fixed.
“It’s a little defeating in a way,” she says. “If something costs more than you bought it for, you kind of don’t want to even bother. … The moment they got a flat or something it would be in the garage, and it would stay there forever.”