Brakes – find out how to adjust squeaky brakes and swap pads!
Women and Gender Variant (WaG) is a dedicated space for women and gender-variant people to fix their own bikes, with mechanics on hand for help and advice. Every 2nd and 4th Monday night we run a free workshop for women and gender-variant people. We cover maintenance topics like adjusting brakes and how to fix a puncture, or riding topics like assertive cycling and fitting your bike to your body. Sometimes we show films, other times we just have a chat over tea or beer.
Why ‘women and gender-variant’ only?
Growing up, women aren’t generally encouraged to fix bikes or given access to knowledge about mechanics in general. As a result, women can feel like they can’t fix stuff themselves, or think it’s a man’s domain. All this can also be true for people with gender-variant identities. When most mechanics are men, there is a kind of hierarchy of knowledge, whereby the men fix the bikes and teach the women, and the women watch the men fix the bikes (and learn little), or are taught by the men. We want to do away with all this and create a space where you are empowered to learn about your bike, share what you know (or just get on with it yourself!), all without the pressure and machismo that sometimes exists in male populated spaces. We offer a stand and tools, and some help and advice when you get stuck.
The London Bike Kitchen is an open DIY workshop where you can work on your own bike instead of giving it to someone else. Consider it a Do-It-Together education space.