Bike Friday is actually a brand of folding bicycle made by Green Gear Cycling. All the bikes are designed to be packed and stowed in a standard sized towable suitcase and, more importantly, to “ride like your best bike”.
- address: 3364 West 11th Ave.Eugene, OR 97402
- telephone: 1-800-777-0258 (US & Canada) 1-541-687-0487 (International)
- fax: 541-687-0403
- website: http://www.bikefriday.com/
- e-mail: [email protected]
Bike Friday models have more of an emphasis on ridability than their folding characteristics. Their sales pitch is that it “rides like your best bike”. Therefore it is not the most convenient or easiest folder and still rather bulky, but a very good high performance bicycle. This emphasis on ridability probably comes from the co-founders racing background as they did not have the engineering background of other pioneering bike manufacturers.
Bike Friday is co-owned by brothers Alan and Hanz Scholz who initially started working together when Alan was 17 and Hanz just seven. Alan started the Great Plains Bike Club in North Dakota, and opened a ski and bike shop in his parent’s garage. Little Hanz would help work on the bikes. Alan later left home with wife Beverley for Eugene, Oregon but continued in the cycling trade making clothing, touring bags and the Burley Child Trailer to transport his two children. The Burley Design Co-operative became a respected brand at this time.
At about the same time, younger brother Hanz rode around Europe on an inexpensive folding bike and returned “with a sore butt”. He was determined to invent a quality travel bicycle, and when Alan separated with his wife, the two brothers began working together again. They made tandem frame sets for Burley, and were the largest tandem builder in the USA. But they were keen to build performance travel bikes of their own and began Green Gear Cycling in a small garage.
In 1991 Hanz took the first Bike Friday travel bicycle to Australia’s desert regions. It was a diamond frame New World Tourist and because it folded to suitcase size bus drivers let him on for free. Despite almost hitting a wild horse at night, it rode well over serious distances and saved on baggage fees – their ideal invention!
They have since built a stable customer base the world over, thanks largely to a philosophy of starting the design process at the customer. They are not interested in mass production but “getting it right”. This rather uncommon approach to product design and development has created products unique to the industry. The Traveler Q is one such model, a tandem that converts to a single bike. They also designed the Family Tandem, which enables parents to take their children out cycling with them.
The brothers are keen to keep their service personal, and will design and build a bike based on your measurements and specific bicycling needs. They also own Tikit Bike which emphasizes the convenience and ease of the fold bikes rather than high performance.
Today, Bike Friday models include tandems, triplets, road, mountain and touring models and a recumbent. They are also committed to green transport alternatives and encourage their workers to ride, walk or bus to work taking a Bike Friday where possible.
There are clubs for Bike Friday owners all over the world. Some high profile owners include famous cycling broadcaster Phil Liggett, Race Across America champ Lon Haldeman and long distance German cyclist Heinz Stücke. So, while their factory is in the US, you should be able to receive help from local cyclists near you.
Hours of work
Monday – Friday
9am to 5pm (PT)
- Standard Frames: No
- Custom Frames: Yes
- Retrofitting old bikes: No
- Year Established: 1987
- Products Made In: Eugene, Oregon
- Availability: Direct shippers or dealers
- Types of Bicycles: A range of folding bikes that include tandems, triplets, road, mountain, touring and recumbent
- Construction Methods: TIG welded
- Frame Materials: Raw cromoly steel tubing