Photo by Vic Gedris
Just in time for west-end cyclists to gear up for spring, Hoopdriver Bicycles has opened its doors in a new location: 668 Annette Street (between Jane and Runnymede). We asked proprietor Martin Neale to give us the skinny on his new digs.
Tell us about the new location and why you chose it
I’ve often admired the small town feel of Annette. It reminds me of main streets in Ontario towns as they enter or exit the main strip. The street is lined with trees, homes, increasingly interesting businesses and bike lanes in both directions! It has some curves to break the monotony of the usual downtown grid and it’s less hectic feeling than where we were. But the best part is that our new neighbours have been really welcoming.
What does the store offer?
We are a traditional brick-and-mortar shop offering distinctive steel bicycles parts and accessories and the finest custom builds, wheel builds and service. Hoopdriver specializes in steel bicycles for ride quality, durability and beauty. Our customers tend to be urban, touring, randonneuring and sport-road enthusiasts.
Hoopdriver stocks Marinoni, Moulton,Pashley, Surly, Bianchi and Simcoe bicycles. We have a particularly large selection of Brooks and Velo-Orange products, as well as parts and accessories from Carradice, Arkel, Ortlieb, Busch & Muller, Schmidt, Paul, Phil Wood, Chris King, White Industries, Nitto, MKS, Sugino, Soma, Fyxation, Tubus, Compass, Grand Bois and many others.
I enjoy creating what I hope is an inspirational and comfortable space for outfitting oneself with a new bike, parts for a custom project, or simply discussing improvements to an existing ride.
Any tips you might have for us spring cyclists?
Stay out of the gutters! Always, but especially before the streets have been swept after winter.
Take layers with you for cool spring nights. Then you won’t have to cut your rambling short!
If riding hard is what you do but you’ve been off the bike, even if you’ve been staying fit over the winter, ease back into it gradually. Finally, take your bike in for a proper tune-up, so it's ready when you are!
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More photos of the new shop by Vic Gedris below: