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The EAB program is currenty using our old volunteer management system

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Earn-A-Bike - Boulder, Colorado


Earn-A-Bike Boulder Colorado

Earn-A-Bike (EAB) gives old bikes new life by using them as teaching tools to empower participants with the basic maintenance and commuting skills and the resources to build themselves a dependable bike to use as safe, practical transportation to get to and from work, errands and recreation.

Who is eligible?
Anyone 16 or older is welcome to Earn-A-Bike at Community Cycles. You may only earn one bike.

How does it work?

Earn a bike (EAB) is a new way to get a bicycle. You learn bike mechanics by building up your own bicycle with instruction from our staff of experienced instructors and volunteers. The cost is nominal, based on a sliding scale from free for qualified low income people, up to $250. You'll finish the program with a dependable bike and the knowledge, skills, and resources to maintain it.

How long does it take?

It takes most participants 6-7 sessions to build up their bike.  In order to complete the program in a timely manner, you must be prepared to do at least one shift per week. If your schedule will not allow you to work that often on your bicycle, it may be better to simply purchase a bike, along with the membership to Community Cycles. We have limited resources for storage of bikes. If your bike is not ride ready after 7 sessions or your schedule does not accommodate the timely completion of your bike, our instructors can oversee its completion and our staff mechanics will make the necessary final adjustments for you. We will help you, but we cannot guarantee your bike to be ready by a specific date, so make sure you allow enough time if you want your bike ready for a specific date or event.

The EAB handbook is online here.In it you will find an outline of the process of restoring the bicycle you have picked. You must read through each session's plan before coming to class, so that you'll know what yours expected to be doing, and will have some idea of what's going on. Don't worry, no one expects you to be an expert at bike maintenance simply by reading some webpages. Our instructors will be there to show you each process in detail.

How do I sign up?
There are two ways to sign up for Earn-A-Bike.

Online. We prefer you sign up by filling out the application on our website.

We use an online scheduling system that will allow you to track your hours, schedule/cancel shifts, learn about upcoming volunteer opportunities and more.

In Person application. Stop by the shop. We're at 2805 Wilderness Pl Suite 1000. Use our computer to sign up.

If you're already enrolled in the EAB program you can log in and manage your schedule.

You can remove yourself from a scheduled shift by logging into the Volunteer Information Center, clicking on the "My Schedule" tab, and clicking on the "Remove Me" button next to the shift that you would like to cancel. If you need help, you can call the shop for help at 720-565-6019 during our regular hours.

Attendance Policy
We have a high demand for EAB, but a limited number of spaces available in the program. It is not uncommon for EAB class shifts to be booked out for a week or two, and sometimes even longer during peak season. Consequently, we have a strict policy against habitual tardiness or absences.

  • It is your responsibility to get directions beforehand and arrive on time.
  • Please give 24 hours notice if you need to miss or reschedule a shift. Exceptions are made for illness.
  • You will not be allowed to restart the program for one year if:
    • You miss more than two shifts without rescheduling online or calling in.
    • You call in or miss shifts more than 3 times without giving 24 hours notice.
  • If you are more than five minutes late for a shift, you lose that shift and must reschedule.
  • You must request an extension if you will be inactive for 30 days or more.
  • You will loose your hours and your bike after 90 days of inactivity.

Get on the wait-list
If you would like to get on the wait-list show up for one of the class times at the beginning of the session. If there is a no show or call in, you can get that seat. First come first served!

EAB Closed Shop Class

  • Mondays: 1- 2 PM, 5-7 PM
  • Tuesday: 6:30- 8:30 PM
  • Wednesdays: 9- 11, 1- 3 PM
  • Thursdays: 9- 11
  • Fridays:  9-11, 6:30- 8:30 PM
  • Saturday: 6:30-8:30 PM
  • Sunday: 9-11

Tracking your hours
You must check in and out with the greeter at the main desk to log your hours. It is ALWAYS your responsibility to keep track of your own hours by signing in and out, every time you come in, on our daily schedule.

We will delete your account, even if you have selected your bike, after 90 days of inactivity on our schedule. If this happens, you may restart the program, but your bike, if you've already chosen it, gets recirculated into our inventory.

Your first shift - EAB Class

You must arrive on time for your shifts; late students will be turned away.

  • You must arrive on time for your shifts; late students will be turned away.
  • Sign in at the front desk and put on an Earn-A-Bike button.
  • An instructor will give you a brief shop tour and orientation to the program.
  • Closed toe shoes are required.
  • You will get dirty. Wear clothing that you don't mind getting dirty in.

Picking a bike
We have a large selection of around-town, commuter, and mountain bikes from which you can choose. Ultimately, the perfect bike for you is the one you enjoy riding, but our goal is to provide you with a bike that's appropriate for commuting by bike in Boulder. Our inventory changes often and we have many high-quality, brand name bikes available.

We do not offer full-suspension, BMX or cruiser-style bikes as they are not practical for commuting nor do we provide low-quality, department store bikes such as Huffys and Magnas.  Road bikes are generally not available. We will help you select a bike, from our inventory, that can best fit your needs.

  • In instructor will help you pick the bike
  • Pick any bike with a pink inventory tag only.
  • Ask a staff person or program instructor to approve your choice by checking thatPicking a bike that's right for you
    • Your bike fits you appropriately.
    • Your bike is free of structural flaws that make it unsuitable or unusable.

After your choice is approved,

  • Get a laminated yellow tag from the greeter.
  • Have an instructor fill out the yellow tag
  • Give your tag to a staff member to enter it in Volgistics
  • Store your tagged bike in the south  loft.

You are responsible for the correct storage of your bike until it is ready to go home with you.
If you are unsure about tagging and storing your bike, ask the greeter for assistance.
Incorrectly stored or tagged bikes may inadvertently get recirculated into the inventory.

Working on your bike (WOOB)Working towards your bike
Once you pick your bike, we will help you tune it and outfit it.

  • You have 30 days to complete your bike after picking it.
  • You may only work on your bike at the main shop during designated hours.
  • You may not work on your bike on Thursdays, during open hours.
  • Your bike must pass a safety check from a high-level or core volunteer before you can ride it home.
  • When you have completed your bike, please check out at the front desk.

Completing the program
Once you have finished working on your bike, you will need to do the following:

  • Get a safety check on your bike by a staff shop mechanic or instructor.
  • Fill out an Earn-A-Bike Graduate form at the front desk.Earn-A-Bike Graduate
  • Get your picture taken with your bike.
  • Receive your lock.
  • Consider making a donation and/or purchasing amembership to our shop.
  • We encourage you to continue volunteering and become a high-level volunteer such as an instructor or shop hand.

How much does it cost? Is it FREE?
We appreciate donations of any amount. Give what you're comfortable with and able to donate.

It costs Community Cycles about $250 per participant. With 200-300 people going through the program every year, the costs quickly add up. Any financial contribution offsets our costs and enables us to offer this unique program to as many people as possible.

If you would like to make or encourage someone to make a financial contribution to the EAB program, you can do so at the main shop or using the secure form on our website.

Sign Up For EAB here!