Posted by Elly Blue (Columnist) on August 27th, 2009 at 9:30 am
The front basket used to be a necessary part of any city bike setup, but it seems to have been forgotten over time with the rise of mountain and road bikes.
But baskets are coming back — and in a wider array than ever, from the fancy to the utilitarian. An environmental blog recently did a comprehensive review of a variety of front-mounting baskets currently available (including two locals, Ahearne Cycles and Cetma Cargo).
It also turns out that it’s far easier to take photos from a bike when you’re sitting upright on it, and a front basket helps this pursuit immensely. Below are some photos of the current iteration of front basket setups on bikes we use here at BikePortland.
(Photo © Elly Blue)
He keeps his camera case in there, secured by a bungie cord — tightly enough so his camera doesn’t fly out when riding over bumps, and loosely enough for a quick draw when needed to capture a homegrown bike lane marking, or a crowd of bicycle mounted police who happen to ride by.
While covering Pedalpalooza back in June, I began to get reacquainted with my old, yellow, 1950s three-speed Schwinn Breeze cruiser.
Around this time a lacy green basket arrived in the mail for review from a company called Stockholm Design House. The Ikea-esque packaging and the claim of being inspired by “Grannie’s crocheted tablecloths and spontaneous picnics” was charming, but I was initially underwhelmed by the 5 kilogram (11 pound) weight limit and the $60 price tag.
I attached it to the Breeze, however, using the solid hardware provided, and after a few weeks of riding it around I have to say I love it. It’s not what you want to use to carry all your things on your commute, but the Breeze isn’t a commuting bike, either. It’s for making short runs wearing skirts and nice shoes to a coffeeshop or lunch cart or a meeting, and that’s what you need this basket for as well — a place to keep your purse in easy reach along with a carton of leftover Thai food, four milkshakes, or your notebook and camera. If a purse isn’t your thing, the whole basket detaches easily to be carried around on its shoulder strap.
A wire basket mounted more simply would serve the same purpose for a tenth of the price, but if you’re looking for something more on the vélocouture end of things, this setup is pretty sweet.