Scroll down for more info about Winter 2018 classes!
What is Grease Rag?
Grease Rag is a Twin Cities collective that works to encourage and empower FTW (Femme, Trans, Women, Non-Binary, Two-Spirit) bicyclists in a collaborative and fun learning environment through rides, discussions, shop nights, and skill shares in a safe(r) space. Grease Rag is entirely powered by community volunteers who are dedicated to working together for a space that is anti-sexist/transphobic/racist/ableist/classist, etc.
Grease Rag makes bicycling in the Twin Cities more inclusive for FTW cyclists, especially focusing on including and building confidence in people new to biking and bike mechanics. In the past years, a lot of new cyclists have been encouraged and supported to bike through Grease Rag and are excited to bike around the Twin Cities.
What does FTW mean?
Grease Rag initially used “WTF” as an acronym that was adopted from San Francisco’s Bike Kitchen, and it stood for “Women, Transgender, Femme.” We think it is a cheeky acronym that covers our target demographic–people that do not benefit from cis-male privilege. (“Cis-male” refers to people who were “assigned ‘male’ at birth” and present and identify as male.) We have since changed this acronym (in 2017) to “FTW.” We include Femme, Trans, Women, Non-Binary, Two-spirit people in this acronym. It aims to include everyone who does not benefit from cis-male privilege. This decision was made to de-center our mission from serving cis-women, and to bring the other identities we serve to the front.
Grease Rag and Cycles for Change partnership:
Cycles for Change recognizes that many aspects of mainstream bicycle culture–including bike shops and bike mechanics–can be unwelcoming, intimidating, dangerous, and unsafe for FTW-identified people. Cycles for Change strives to be a welcoming, accessible, and safe(r) space. We value our partnership with Grease Rag for hosting a FTW-only Open Shop night each week at both our Minneapolis and St. Paul locations. During these nights, facilitators are in the space to promote inclusive policies and to make sure that FTWs are prioritized. Some of the ways we attempt to make safe(r) spaces are through facilitation, sharing and respecting personal pronouns, not policing bodies, and by creating an atmosphere of respect and inclusivity. We encourage participants to approach facilitators with any concerns in person, through email, or the Grease Rag website.
Both Cycles for Change Minneapolis and Saint Paul shops have single stall, all-gender bathrooms.
Check the right hand sidebar for an updated schedule of Grease Rag nights.
Winter 2018 Classes – St. Paul
Cycles for Change-St. Paul will be offering special help with various components this winter. We will still have some stands available for folks who just want to work on their bike. These classes will be lead by youth apprentices Cheng and Pa Kou and adult mechanic Leah.
Tuesday, January 30, 2018 – 5-8pm
Mid-Winter Bike Maintenance/Mid-Season Inspection
This session will discuss:
- Cleaning and maintaining good working parts, including lubricating (We’ll have lots of rags, degreaser, simple green, brushes, and more)
- Checking your brakes and shifters
- Accessories and lights
- What to look for when buying a used winter bike
- Modifying the bike you have
Tuesday, February 6, 2018 – 5-8pm
Wheel Truing and Hub Overhaul
In this session, participants will:
- Learn how a wheel functions
- Learn how to fix and maintain wheels
- Build confidence in truing wheels
- Be able to overhaul a hub and fix a flat
Tuesday, February 20, 2018 – 5-8pm
This session will discuss:
- Brake and shifter cable and housing
- How to clean and replace cables after those tough winter riding days
- How to get ready for spring
Winter 2018 Classes – Minneapolis
Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Bike Cleaning Party
Did you resolve that this season you were going to do some maintenance on your winter bike? Let us help you out! Join us at Cycles for Change-Minneapolis for a mid-winter bike cleaning party! We’ll have lots of rags, degreaser, simple green, brushes, and more.