A small Pink 'Sweetie' Bicycle complete with pink fluffy sadle cover, soft purple handle bar grips and shiny break cables.
Where and how is it used?
ride outside for fun
What did you or someone else pay for it?
£20 from Ride On - Exeter
Why do you want to add it to the museum?
Ride On is a Charity which gives access to affordable bikes and cycle training in the local community to get more people riding more bikes more often. The Ride On team take pre-loved bikes and recycle them, with a full service by a qualifiesd mechanic and ensure they are at a good roadworthy standard for many local projects run by volunteers. Ride On also offer bike Maintenance Classes.
How was it made?
Is made in a factory
Is produced by local cottage industry
Is made to particular specifications
Is craft / hand-made
Is a service
Materials & Making
Who made or produced your commodity?
recycled by Ride On
Who was paid to make it?
volunteers re conditioned it
What skills does it take to make it?
Where was it made?
it was re conditioned at Ride On in Exeter
What does it cost to make it?
origional price unknown
What is it made from?
Buying & Owning
Who decides how much it costs?
Who or what assesses its quality?
Ride On Mechanics
Where is it sold?
Who or what sells it?
How did this thing arrive from where it was made to where you got it?
Ride On Donated it to MoCC
Where is it used?
Where is it kept?
at Ride On
How and by whom is it cared for?
Ride On until it is bought
How long will it last?
this will depend on how well it is looked after
Where will it go when it's finished with?
back to a project like Ride On perhaps?
What is it worth?
it costs £20 but it offers hours of fun
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Questions and answers
Answer questions that the commodity contributor has asked. Help to reveal unknown quantities, properties and uses.
Hello, my name is Gabrielle and I'll be your commodity consultant for today. Thanks for such a great and challenging question!
First, I found out a bit of background information about budgie's and bikes which was quite interesting and sets the scene nicely!...
Using budgies to ride bikes in circuses is becoming increasingly less common due to lots of ethical regulations. But, they can be trained to do so through using clicker training (clicking and giving a reward at the point at which an animal performs a ‘good’ behaviour- https://www.quora.com/I-went-to-the-circus-yesterday-and-saw-a-group-of-budgies-performing-some-quite-amazing-tricks-For-example-they-jumped-through-hoops-and-pulled-a-toy-car-How-do-people-train-budgies-to-do-those-sorts-of-things). So, when it comes to riding a bike, the bird is rewarded when it gets onto the bike, and for making certain movements that moves the bike forward. This video shows you how they’re trained- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34t2p5i1kLw and the bikes that are used.
There’s nowhere that I can find through my researching that says specifically where the bikes used in the circuses are from, however the above youtube video shows the birds riding miniature dolls-house and toy bikes, like these ones here…
Both of these bikes are fully functional miniature replicas, light enough for the bird to ride and balance on. If these are the kinds of bikes that the budgies ride, they’re made from aluminium alloy and PVC plastic. These bikes are made by ‘Toymaster’, whose production facilities are in China, although they do not specify what region or where, lacking ethical transparency. Their ethical score reflects this lacking transparency, receiving the worst environmental reporting score simply because no information is available or visible. Check out this website to find out more or research your own familiar product companies… http://www.ethicalconsumer.org/scoredetails.aspx?ProductId=1346974. So, who made them… Well according to the ‘shop ethical’ website, ¾ of the world’s toys are made in China in sweatshop style environments, according to ‘Shop Ethical’. Whilst working conditions might have improved, in peak seasons it states that local workers who likely make Toymasters bikes are still subject to poor conditions and up to 80 hour weeks. China, they consider to be a country at very high risk of human rights violations. So combining this with Toymaster’s lacking transparency, we can presume that their potential budgie bikes are made by these workers in such conditions.
What also kept popping up in my researching was the Raleigh bike from the 70’s/80’s called a ‘Budgie’. So, if you wanted to practice a different kind of Budgie Bike with some prolonged handle-bars and a working front break, check this out!!... http://www.re-buy-cycle.co.uk/details.php?id=28
Thanks for a great question and sorry for not being able to give you a specific answer to who exactly made the bike. I’ve sent toymaster an email and if I find anything else out, I’ll let you know!
Question: is it wise for an adult to ride a child's bicycle? what health implications does it pose? one of our invigilators tried it and it and potential issues were noted.
Hello, my name is Gabrielle and I’m your commodity consultant for today. I can affirm from my own experience that riding a child’s bike certainly isn’t easy! I’ve been doing some research and have found the following…
Whilst there isn’t a hard and fast rule for fitting a bike to size, there’s some guidelines which suggest that it’s not wise to ride a child’s bike (even though it might be easier to mount). Firstly, adult bikes are measured by their frame-size, whereas children’s bikes are sold on their wheel size (have a look on here for specific measurements http://www.whycycle.co.uk/buying-a-bike/bike-sizing-advice/). This means that the frame on a child’s bike does not match adult height guidelines- if you’re standing, you should be able to put your foot on the floor pedal and your leg should be flat. If the bike frame is not measured by height and is focused on wheel size like a child’s bike, you’re not likely to be able to do this.
It’s quite interesting, because it turns out that bikes used to be measured from the bottom bracket to the top tube centre line, today it’s determined by the measurement of the seat tube because that’s what determines how the rider actually sits on the bike (see http://www.sheldonbrown.com/frame-sizing.html for a picture to explain this).
Measuring and having the correct frame, rather than a bike that’s too small (like a child’s bike) is particularly important because your weight should mostly be held using your strong thigh muscles pushing onto the pedals. If you can’t put your leg flat when your foot’s on the bottom pedal, you end up leaning forward too much, putting the weight on your spine and arms which do not have the same muscular strength. This ‘Bike Forum’ discussion suggests that you particularly end up putting too much stress on your hands, leading to blisters, pain and even carpel tunnel syndrome in some extreme and prolonged cases (http://www.bikeforums.net/general-cycling-discussion/611894-ramifications-riding-bike-too-small.html). But leaning forward too much due to a poorly fitting bike seat also means, potentially more seriously, that you’re excessively bending your torso and hunching over. If you imagine your spine, it’s made up of disks of spongy tissue between the vertebrae. These disks rely on good blood supply which circulates best when you’re moving. If you’re sitting too far forward or bending, your spine has to hold up more weight, putting pressure on the disks (risking rupture) and also depriving them of nutrients (according to Dr Hisey at http://www.webmd.com/back-pain/features/how-to-wreck-your-back?page=2 ).
There’s a really good experiment that you can do at home to show this back pressure which I used to do at work when we had manual handling training. Blow up a balloon to about the size of a cricket ball and have two cans of fizzy drink. Get one can (with the ring side on the table) and place the balloon on top into the indented side. Do the same with the other (the indented side again against the balloon and the ring side facing up). If you push the cans together, you’ll see the balloon disperse evenly around and it’s incredibly hard to pop. But if you put one can at a 45 degree angle, you’ll see the balloon excessively push out of one side and find it much easier to pop. The cans act as your vertebrae and the balloon the disk of spongy tissue inside it. When the cans are in the ‘straight-up’ position, is when you’re sitting properly putting little strain on your back, but when the cans are at an angle and the balloon is herniating is when you’re sitting too far forward or hunched over, like riding a poorly sitting child’s bike! This hunching over also reduces your lung capacity by up to 30%- which if you’re on a long cycle can have a potentially huge impact (http://www.breathing.com/articles/posture.htm).
If your seat is too low you’re also risking knee damage as your knees are forced outwards and have to take the pressure and weight of riding on the joint itself rather than allowing the strong leg muscles to help (http://www.trishop.com/five-signs-your-bike-doesnt-fit).
So, in short, whilst you can ride a child’s bike, it’s not likely to be the wisest idea, both in terms of comfort, back strain and knee problems! There’s also some evidence that children’s bikes are heavier and harder to manoeuvre on serious cycles.
If you wanted some more information on the perfect bike sizes, this video is great…https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9XWsz5-VYFU. This website also has some great measurements and picture measurements http://guides.wiggle.co.uk/wiggle-bike-size-guide.
Thanks so much for your question- it’s definitely taught me lots about bikes!
Hello. My name is Gabrielle and I'm your commodity consultant for today. I have just been doing some research and I have found the following links which may be of use...
The first one here, exactly like the one in your picture, is for a child's bike. However it claims to fit "most bike seats" due to the flexible cord allowing the cover to stretch and retract. This may mean that it would be suitable for your bike, but check out this website for sizing guidelines- http://www.raleigh.co.uk/Support/BikeSizeGuide/B00H0M3XW8
This one is also a slightly more sophisticated alternative, made of imitation sheep-skin specifically for adult bikes. The reviews suggest that it is a good fit for bike seats up to 10 inches and it even has foam padding to enable a more comfortable cycle.
Finally, though it's not fluffy, this also caught my eye if you were looking for a bike cover to match the pink fun-ness of the one in the picture- http://www.ebay.ie/itm/Donkey-Products-Seat-Cushion-Flying-Bike-Waterproof-Cover-Saddle-Protector-Pink-/111821788946?hash=item1a09191712:g:segAAOSw2GlXJ767. It's waterproof and the wings on the side are even reflective, meaning an added safety when cycling in the winter months!
Thanks for your great question- your bike seat search has certainly intrigued me!