PIT Shop Visit: Thick Bikes May 16, 2011

IMG_1049.jpg

Thick Bikes is arguably the best bike shop in Pittsburgh. What started out as Chris Beech’s custom BMX shop has grown into one of the largest shops in the Iron City. Every few months, Thick Bikes would take over more and more of their massive, sprawling warehouse. While it’s easy to document the retail side of the shop, I fell in love with the back mechanic’s area, which served its purpose of offering up some gorgeous machinery to document.

Check out more from my Shop Visit to Thick Bikes below!

IMG_1050.jpg

The sign is incredible.

IMG_1067.jpg

But the things behind this sign were even better.

IMG_1065.jpg

But as I said, the mechanic’s area had great fruit to bare.

IMG_1086.jpg

Sure, there were the standard tools used to build up and repair bikes but there’s more back there.

IMG_1072.jpg

While I’m not the hugest graffiti fan, it works well in a bike shop. Especially with neon-painted frames hanging in the foreground.

IMG_1084.jpg

The artist who painted the space even went as far as to paint the Bridgeport and other machines in the shop. I have never, ever seen something like this and it made my day.

IMG_1075.jpg

Seriously, how amazing is that?

IMG_1080.jpg

He even pin-striped the lathe.
IMG_1078.jpg

But that’s not to say that Chris isn’t creative as well. He used his welding abilities that he learned while building custom bikes to make these sprocket screens.

IMG_1077.jpg

As I mentioned, Chris began Thick Bikes as a frame builder. He made BMX bikes and eventually turned the brand into a bike shop.

IMG_1091.jpg

He still builds bikes but they’re mostly more art-driven.

IMG_1114.jpg

Like this insanity! This bike’s hanging above the cash wrap. Crazy huh?

IMG_1102.jpg

Also in the front of the space is this replica Penny Farthing.

IMG_1116.jpg

The quirkiness of Thick Bikes translates over to their jerseys and branding. I picked up a pair of these socks.

IMG_1100.jpg

And they’re still keeping up with the popular bikes, like the Nature Boy.

IMG_1113.jpg

Thick Bikes is a full-service shop.

IMG_1109.jpg

Stocked with everything you’d need, for any kind of bike.

IMG_1123.jpg

And it’s one of the most unique shops I’ve ever been to. So swing by and check them out if you’re in Pittsburgh. If you hang around long enough, you might hear them play Dark Castle. I wanna thank the mechanics for letting me in the back space and for everyone at the shop for being so friendly. Check out more photos at my Flickr!

Thick Bikes
1408 Bingham Street
Pittsburgh PA 15203
(412) 390-3590
Mon-Sat 10am – 6pm

Comments are closed.