Friday, January 31, 2014

We are moving.....

Hold onto your hats, folks, its time we got our own brand new website.

Please update your bookmarks or how you link with us to:

All BikeSurf requests must be done through this new site.

Why have we gone to so much trouble?
  1. to allow other cities to join the network
  2. to develop a better and more efficient booking system
  3. to allow us increased flexibility in web design and fucntionality
  4. to protect your privacy and secure any information you submit
  5. to allow increased interactivity from our users
  6. to implement other suggestions from our users
Please feedback any comments/ suggestions by email - see contact page.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Upcoming BVG and Polizei bicycle auctions - a great way to get your own bike.

Some of you may not have been in Berlin long enough to hear about the bicycle auctions that happen on behalf of Polizei and BVG every two months. Those bikes that are not claimed by their owners after an allotted time are sold off to the highest bidder at these auctions.

Having attended many of these auctions, I recommend the Polizei auctions as they are more organised and have a larger number of bikes on offer.

The benefits of buying a bike in this manner are:
  1. cheap bikes - cheaper than flohmarkts
  2. proof of receipt - means you can sell off bike later more easily
  3. not supporting bicycle theft
  4. it's an exciting atmosphere and gives you a buzz when you're the highest bidder 
It is best if you go there with someone who knows what to look out for in buying a second hand bike, as they are of varying quality and a little bit about how numbers sound in German is a plus.

If you contact us at BSB, we may be attending and be able to help you out in choosing a suitable ride.

The next BVG auction  --> 23/01/14 (viewing starts at 8am, auction from 10am)
  • ~ 40 bikes on offer usually (also other items, sporting equipment, cameras, laptops, phones, etc.)
  • requires you to pay a deposit of 5€  for the bidding slip in order to place a bid (bring your Anmeldung or other proof of your address, passport)
  • a bit chaotic/ unorganised at times
  • pay with EC card or cash only (no credit cards)
  • from 8am (viewing of bikes) and then auction starts at 10am.
  • recommend you bring a picnic with you - eg snacks and tea
Where? Saalburgstr 3/3a, 12099 (nearest UBahn: Ullsteinstrasse)
 BVG auction website - click here


The next Polizei auction --> 28/01/13 (viewing starts at 8am, auction from 10am)
  • ~ 200 bikes on offer usually (also other items, sporting equipment, cameras, laptops, phones, etc.)
  • no bidding slip required - bid using your upraised hand, pay for each item immediately after you have won it
  • well organised
  • cash only - no cards
  • will be taking place from 8am (viewing of bikes) and then auction starts at 10am upstairs
  • recommend you bring a picnic with you - eg snacks and tea
Where? AssetOrb GmbH
Werdauer Weg 23, 10829 Berlin (near S-Bahnhof Schöneberg)
Polizei auction website - click here

The details of all future BVG and Polizei auctions will be on the calendar in "Things to do" at the top of this page.

Happy bidding!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

BikeSurfBerlin information poster

Wonderful information poster, courtesy of Raelina and her US friends.

Feel free to print, distribute or send to all your friends or other interested parties. This will help BSB become even bigger in 2014 and hopefully inspire others to set up similar projects elsewhere.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

How BikeSurf works - The Video!

How BikeSurf works from Sam Muirhead on Vimeo

Many thanks to Judith and Sam for putting in the time, sweat and tears that went in to making this video for us. A warm place awaits you in bicycle heaven :-)

Friday, November 29, 2013

The Council of Europe presents BikeSurfBerlin

My God, it's full of flags!
BikeSurfBerlin was invited to present the project by the Council of Europe in Strasbourg in early November, in a conference (Responding Together) seeking to raise awareness and encourage networking between various sharing projects throughout Europe. We were privileged to be invited and, ever eager to share our idea, we (Elly, Rachel, Olga, Patrick & Graham) took 14 hour's worth of cheap trains to reach Strasbourg. Deciding to CouchSurf with some fantastic hosts there, proved to be a wonderful chance to get an insight into the city from the very off.
That's real-time interpreting - impressive.
Bjorn (the BSB bear)! - You're famous!

All those flags at the Palais de'Europe, rigorous security and real-time international interpreters told us that BSB had gotten European recognition.

We spent two days at the conference, listening to representatives from other sharing initiatives discuss the importance and logistics of setting up their respective projects. We also had the opportunity to take centre stage and present BSB and its progress to date. The BSB scrapbook, containing photos and witty descriptions, was particularly enjoyed by the audience.

Monday, November 18, 2013

BikeSurfer waxes lyrical about BSB

(In response to a request for his opinion of the BSB experience for a newspaper article).

Hello D****,

I am from the world.

To arrive in a city and be the master of your own destiny, to arrive in a city and become better acquainted with the precipices and crevices of all the kiez, riding East to West across a city once home to the 20th century's most infamous garden hedge dispute all while sparing oneself of the cumbersome, extortionate degradation they call public transport; all this is priceless.
That a priceless service is without cost should not be regarded a coincidence. The widely held belief that remuneration is the inspiration for inspiration, that moolah means innovation, to my mind at least, is suspicious and I daresay when BikeSurf is successfuly rolled out around the world, those suspicions would go some way to being confirmed.

My real name is Tanzen Spinoza. Emeka is a stage name. I should like my real name to be attributed to any quotes. Should you want anymore, don't hesitate to get in touch. Good luck with the piece.
Immer mit liebe,
emeka *

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Practical Theorist blog - we are already hooked ;-)

Looking up for some inspiration? Here's one for you:

This blog was launched not so long ago, and presents cool art, books and films, ideas and amazing projects... the latest article is about BikeSurf.

For us it was a pleasure talking to Oliver, the one behind the blog, and we expect to get inspired by more ideas from the blog!

Friday, September 13, 2013

BikeSurf on CNN

BikeSurfBerlin! Berlin? The buzz is global! Today we've been featured on CNN Global!

Triple hurray to Graham for the idea, to the BSB team for implementation and to all our bikesurfers from around the world, who made it possible for the project to get a minute of fame on CNN!!!

Special thanks to BSB faces and voices Olga and Sam. We've also managed to get hold of Graham to get his reaction: "overjoyed!"

4:50 and onward

Click to watch CNN report

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bike Mechanics Wanted

Original image:

We need some mechanical help with our fleet! Since our bikes are seeing active use, some pretty typical repairs are regularly needed. Think you can help? SHOUT OUT! Your usual (and potentially sometimes UNUSUAL) bike repairs are called for: making sure brakes are in order, tightening bolts, fixing tires, keeping the chain in good repair—anything and everything that can happen to a bike can just as well happen to one of ours. Think you can contribute to this effort? We can use any and all repair people: from the relatively familiar to the wizardly talented. Let us know by e-mailing!

You’ll not only be a ROCK STAR for doing so, you’ll also be doing all of the BikeSurf Berlin community a ton of good. After all we’re nothing if we don’t have the bikes which drive our org. Ride on!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Downsizing the BSB bike fleet

Guess the BSB team member competition
We have decided to significantly reduce the bike fleet at BikeSurfBerlin from the end of August.   With more bikes, come more repair and logistical problems, along with more costs.  Because we still are not reaching our fundraising and sustainable participation goals for the current number of bikes, in order to reduce our headaches and improve standards we will now provide approximately 10 bikes for short term BikeSurfing.  BSB's wheels turn only because of  volunteer pedaling and donations, and unfortunately right now maintaining sustainability for the project means fewer wheels.  

Some of the other bikes will still be available from Leila (exchange store in Mitte) and from BSB on longer term loan (>1month) only. 
We also have some bikes to sell, to reduce the need to store the extra bikes and to generate funds. All the money we raise from any source goes into making this project better (there's no profit, just "the project"), so we will be transforming a few bikes into much needed capital in order to improve the quality of the remaining bikes.  

We would dearly love to provide all of the current 24 BSB bikes for surfing, as there is clearly a demand, but we need to be realistic about the path to providing a sustainable service with our current resources.  Right now this means shifting to an emphasis on quality over quantity.

As BSB is a community project, your thoughts on this decision are most welcome.