Ever since I got seriously into cycling in my freshman year of college or so, I’ve loved hanging out at bike shops. My friends and I were huge “shop rats” back in the day, and as I record more of these Shop Talk episodes, I’m realizing how much I’ve missed it!
Getting to know and chat with interesting bike people like my guest this week, Tom Martin of TomCat Bikes on SE Milwaukie and Powell, is a big reason why.
So much of what we think of as “local bike culture” exists in and/or comes from bike shops and I believe they’re a vital part of our cycling ecosystem.
Tom Martin embraces that responsibility.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)
Since opening TomCat Bikes in 2018 after 35 years wearing many different hats in the bike industry, his shop has become firmly established in the Brooklyn neighborhood. In this interview you’ll hear how friends helped him survive the Covid boom, learn why he’s become the go-to shop for fans of Burning Man and freak bikes, find out why he thinks major shifts in the bike industry will help his business, find out why he thinks local bike theft chop shops — which he calls “bicycle slaughterhouses” — are tied to organized crime rings, and what it means to give a bike a soul.
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@JM love these podcasts…thanks for doing this.
You’re welcome JJ! I’m glad you appreciate them. Let me know if you have any ideas for shows or guests. I’m hoping to do a more news discussion-type format (like where I’d have a few people on share perspectives on a hot news topic) but it just hasn’t come together yet. Stay tuned!
Thanks for the interview Johnathan!