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Location: 3961 East Bayshore Road, Palo Alto, CA MAP

Volunteer days are back, in a new format! They're the second and fourth Saturdays, on a smaller scale. See our Eventbrite site at bikex.eventbrite.com for details and to RSVP. Grab your spot and join in on the wrenching for good! See the event calendar for more events and volunteer days.

Donate bicycles and parts by appointment. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and details of what you have. We have specific drop-off times on Wednesday and Friday and other times by special arrangement. We'll let you know if we have a need for your items and get you drop-off details.

The Silicon Valley Bicycle Exchange is a Section 501c(3) non-profit organization.

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This month we're pleased to introduce our featured volunteer, Chris Jasper.

Chris is a local boy from the suburbs of San Jose. As a kid, He found love for a bike at a young age, as it provided fun and transportation to school, sports, and hanging out with friends.


Chris Jasper, our featured volunteer, and homework bike mechanic extraordinaire!
Chris Jasper, our featured volunteer, and homework bike mechanic extraordinaire!

Chris studied Biology in college but is a professional in computer systems administration. In his spare time, he's become one of our most active homework bike volunteers, and has taken home and refurbished approximately 100 bikes over the last two years. 

He's played a big role in our bike donations. Get to know Chris via the interview below.  

How did you get involved with SVBE?

I was introduced to SVBE by a Googleserve volunteer event.

What keeps you coming back?

So many things! I enjoy tinkering on bicycles. I love that I can do that and help out SVBE and the recipients of the bikes. I enjoy the camaraderie I have found with other folks at SVBE. All of this helps me feel both part of, and a contributor to my community. 

You’ve worked on many different bikes. Which bike stands out as the most memorable, or your favorite?

I recently worked on a Ritchey P-22. This was a bike that I remember seeing in magazine articles in my teenage years being ridden by the professionals at the time. I felt as though I was working on a piece of history.

What’s your favorite bike tool?

Although I don't use it very often, and it is more the name of the tool that tickles my fancy, a chain whip. Kinda medieval! 

What is your background in cycling? And on wrenching on bikes?

As a product of the 70s and 80s in the suburbs of the Bay Area, I rode a ton. I have memories from around age 10 of "fixing" my Schwinn Stingray by pouring motor oil out of a can into the bottom bracket and using that same oil to lubricate my chain. Since I was hard on my bike, I had to learn the basics of how to fix flats and straighten the handlebars/stem when I hit a tree.

Like most kids I knew, as soon as I turned 16, the bike got dusty while I started driving. It was not until I went away to college that I started riding again both for fun and for transportation. After college, I did a bicycle tour across the U.S. and have done some other smaller tours since. I still try to do 2-3 15-mile rides/per week. My wrenching started in earnest when I started volunteering for SVBE and every time I visit the shop, I learn something new.

What can you share about your personal or family bike collection? 

Way too many bikes! I have my Bruce Gordon touring bike, a steel early 2000s Jamis mountain bike, a Diamondback gravel bike, a Diamondback endurance road bike, and a Raleigh single-speed for local grocery runs. 

What have you learned since volunteering with SVBE? 

Beyond all the mechanical skills picked up, and tricks of the trade, I have learned how important it is to be part of and serve the community.

Chris Jasper inspecting one of his many homework bikes for parts needs.
Chris Jasper inspecting one of his many homework bikes for parts needs.

Or most interesting problem to deal with?

I still feel that truing a wheel is a bit of science and still quite a bit of magic. I would love to one day feel as though I don't need someone to check my work.

What’s your favorite bike ride (local or not)?

Not a particular ride but on a tour, where the day ends with a beer in my hands, watching the fireflies come out at sundown.

You're busy with a full-time job and as a parent, but spend most of your many hours of volunteer time working on BikeX bikes at home, as homework bikes. What advice do you have for prospective homework bike volunteers?

I often work on homework bikes instead of watching tv or catching up on social media feeds. It has been an exercise in self-discipline to try to recognize high-value activities in my life and spend my time on those.I do admit that sometimes, I find a lull in my work meeting schedule and sneak out and do some homework bike work then as well. I usually try to give myself 30min to 1hr chunks of time to work on a bike. 

When you aren't around BikeX mentors and get stumped by a project at home, what is your process?

I will search the internet and YouTube, especially the Park Tool videos for help. Sometimes, I just lack the knowledge or tools to take care of a particular issue. This often provides me with an excuse to come to the shop to get help and catch up with the BikeX community a bit.