By Stephen Haynes
I’ve been tooling around on the Fairdale Flyer for a few months now and I must say, I think I’m in love…
This bike takes me back to the surf and skate days of my southern California childhood, living a block away from the beach and having a beat-up cruiser to get me where I needed to go. Simple and utilitarian; No gears, no fenders, and handlebars big enough to give a friend a lift down the street.
The Flyer builds on the Spartan tradition of the beach cruiser with subtle yet effective touches that are appealing without betraying the bike’s usefulness.
My Flyer came to me in military green but it’s also offered in white. Both colors are accented with simple rainbow-esque lines on the down tube and seat tube. It’s just enough color to make it appear neither masculine or feminine, and visually gives the bike a lighthearted appearance;—like a smiley face emoticon at the end of a sentence.
The split top tube is both sexy and useful as it can hold a U-lock or anything else you might be able to fit in the slot (but mostly it just looks great). The same exact tubing is flipped upside down to create the Flyer’s step-through model as well.
Fairdale Archer bars have a good bit of sweep and 80mm of rise, but I wish they were just a bit wider. For cruising up and down the strand you probably wouldn’t bat an eye, but here in hilly Western Pennsylvania, a little more leverage would go a long way. Still it’s hardly a complaint as the bars are well suited to the bike and look awesome.
In addition to the Flyer, the good people at Fairdale sent one of their skateboard racks for me to check out. A novel and useful design reminiscent of bike/surfboard racks a few of my friends had growing up. No more tying your skate to your handlebars or riding one-handed to get to your favorite spot! Just throw it on and strap it in with the provided custom bungee.
For a good laugh and an intro to the skate rack, check out Fairdale’s founder Taj touting the benefits of the rack in this super funny video.
I’m looking forward to many more excursions on the Flyer in the time I have left with it. Check out my full review in an upcoming issue of Bicycle Times!