Compare & Contrast: PUBLIC V1 and PUBLIC D8i

June 4th, 2014

We make a variety of bikes to suit a variety of riders and wallets, and the question we get asked frequently is what differentiates our bikes from one another? Here’s a comparison-contrast of two popular models with the same diamond frame style: our most affordable single speed PUBLIC V1, and our best commuter bike the… Read more »

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We make a variety of bikes to suit a variety of riders and wallets, and the question we get asked frequently is what differentiates our bikes from one another? Here’s a comparison-contrast of two popular models with the same diamond frame style: our most affordable single speed PUBLIC V1, and our best commuter bike the eight-speed internally geared PUBLIC D8i. Both bikes ride like butter and have lifetime warranties on their frames, but there are noticeable differences.

The PUBLIC V1 is the bike built for the minimalist. It has a classic steel frame and a single, carefully selected gear that’s calibrated for comfortable flat cruising and modest hills. You’ll use this bike for about town jaunts, smooth rolls to work and coasting through the park on a Sunday. It has color matching fenders and cream tires, along with contrasting red cable housing on the royal blue model and black cable housing on the red model. Its stem has an elegant rise for a more comfortable, upright riding position. We just introduced this bike with a special introductory price of $299 (regularly $449) and at that price it even makes a great gift. Father’s Day, perhaps? Or maybe that special graduate?


Our PUBLIC D8i is a workhorse set of wheels, built with the everyday, power commuter in mind. Its lightweight 100% chromoly steel tube set is strong and durable enough for everyday use and its eight gears are ready to power you up any hill. The new polished silver Shimano Alfine internal hub makes shifting silky smooth and the encased gears reduce the chance of bike grease marring your pants. Polished silver alloy fenders contrast smartly with the black tires and black cable housing and gives it a more serious and masculine personality than our brightly colored bikes with cream tires. The lower rise handlebar stem imparts a more powerful riding position. This bike is new this season with special introductory price of $899 (regularly $1249).

They Don’t Come Back

May 27th, 2014

I was in New York earlier this month and rode from my Chelsea hotel through downtown and over the Brooklyn Bridge to visit our dealer, Joe Nocella who runs 718 Cyclery in Brooklyn. Riding in New York keeps getting better and better with excellent signage, more riders and respectful taxi drivers. Well, at least two of… Read more »

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Image courtesy of wellandgoodnyc.com

I was in New York earlier this month and rode from my Chelsea hotel through downtown and over the Brooklyn Bridge to visit our dealer, Joe Nocella who runs 718 Cyclery in Brooklyn. Riding in New York keeps getting better and better with excellent signage, more riders and respectful taxi drivers. Well, at least two of those three statements are true. Honestly now, riding in New York is a pleasure compared to most other cities. And riding over the Brooklyn Bridge is epic, even more so than our Golden Gate Bridge because of its history.

Joe’s bike shop, 718 Cyclery is cool – really cool. Joe calls it the “inverted” bike shop, meaning that they turned the concept of the traditional bike store upside down. His innovations range from teaching bike classes, working on bikes with customers, and creating an atmosphere that is super customer friendly, the way your neighborhood café is.

718 Cyclery Inside View

718 Cyclery does high-end custom bikes, everyday city bikes, and everything in between. Joe has been selling a lot of our bikes for years. When I asked him why, he said, “They don’t come back”. Basically, the quality is such that customers don’t return with the quality problems that plague other city bikes. We love getting these compliments, and we love having bike professional like Joe getting our bikes out on the streets where they belong.

We select our bike dealers the way we design our bikes – with great attention to detail. While out bikes rarely “come back” for quality problems, they need servicing and tune ups, and all of us need our local bike shop. For a list of other great dealers click here.

Header image courtesy of wellandgoodnyc.com.

How Does Your Bike Locking Grade?

May 12th, 2014

Locking up your bike appears a task as obvious as brushing your teeth. Open lock. Thread lock through bike to something solid. Done. But, like teeth brushing, there’s a right way and a wrong way. This freshly cut vimeo highlighted last week in The Atlantic Citiesis the fourth video installment on bike locking from the brutally-honest New York… Read more »

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Lock Up Your Wheels The Right Way

Locking up your bike appears a task as obvious as brushing your teeth. Open lock. Thread lock through bike to something solid. Done. But, like teeth brushing, there’s a right way and a wrong way. This freshly cut vimeo highlighted last week in The Atlantic Citiesis the fourth video installment on bike locking from the brutally-honest New York bike mechanic, Hal Ruzal. In this installment Ruzal walks around New York grading people’s bike locking skills from A (well locked) to F (poorly locked).

This video was released in honor of National Bike Month and it’s a good reminder for places like San Francisco where an average of 11 bikes are stolen per day. As we’ve written before, this is a global problem and even bike-focused cites like Denmark see over 100,000 bikes per year stolen. The truth is many of the thefts are related to user error and are avoidable.

In short, Ruzal’s tips boil down to the basics: 1) Get the best quality U-lock you can. We recently released the latest Kryptonite Series 5 Mini U-Lock and highly recommend it; 2) Lock your frame (not just your wheels) to a solid pole or a bike lock—wooden posts and chain link fences don’t count; 3) For quick release wheels either remove the front wheel and lock with your back wheel and frame, carry a cable or extra lock to secure them or purchase a set of locking axle nuts like these so your wheels can’t be quickly removed; and 4) Permanently lock/attached your seat to your bike.

For more resources on bike locking check out the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition’s thorough page on Theft & Locking. And if you live in a city where you can register your wheels (San Franciscans, head here) make sure you do this.

Commute in Style With Our New Rickshaw Bags

May 6th, 2014

May is national bike month and this Thursday San Francisco celebrates the 20th anniversary of Bike to Work Day. Thousands of people will be rolling to work that day and to help all bikers out in their commutes we’re excited to announce the pre-order of our new Rickshaw Duo Pannier, perfect for everyday commuting and handmade right here in San… Read more »

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Rickshaw Duo Pannier Bags

May is national bike month and this Thursday San Francisco celebrates the 20th anniversary of Bike to Work Day. Thousands of people will be rolling to work that day and to help all bikers out in their commutes we’re excited to announce the pre-order of our new Rickshaw Duo Pannier, perfect for everyday commuting and handmade right here in San Francisco.

This new duo pannier is the most stylish and functional you’ll find on the market and is designed by Rickshaw Bagworks, a local San Francisco company who has been producing superb quality, handmade messenger bags and more for over six years. Customize the flap of this duo pannier in five snappy houndstooth fabrics crafted in the USA from recycled bottles in colors specifically chosen to compliment PUBLIC’s new 2014 color lineup. And if you’re into matching, snag a color-coordinating houndstooth Metro Tote (or two) designed specifically to be used with the duo pannier.

Little details are what set the Rickshaw Duo Pannier apart from the rest:

  • Simple and sturdy velcro tabs make for easy attachment and removal of the pannier from the back rack.
  • A removable shoulder strap is included for carrying the bag into the office or around the farmers market.
  • Load this pannier with up to two bags of full groceries and cinch them in tight with a drawstring closure underneath the top flap.
  • Smartly located snaps allow for pannier straps to be snapped into place so they don’t fly around.
  • Empty panniers can be neatly folded and snapped closed.
  • Interior is supported by a heavy-duty plastic frame, so bag does not slouch and can support a heavy load.
  • Webbing loops are provided for attachment of rear safety flashers on both sides.

Pre-order our new Rickshaw Duo Pannier today for $249.

New Rickshaw Metro Tote

Keep the interior of your pannier extra-organized with our matching Rickshaw Metro Tote. This tote comes in the same unique houndstooth fabrics as the flap of the pannier and was designed specifically for use inside the duo pannier.

Our Upgraded Premium PUBLIC D8i

April 22nd, 2014

Our PUBLIC D8i has undergone a spec and design overhaul and today we’re proud to announce the release of our revamped PUBLIC D8i that’s lighter, stronger and (feel free to quote us here) better looking then ever. Working from the inside out, we upgraded to the premium Shimano Alfine 8-speed internal hub. Expect effortless shifting… Read more »

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Our PUBLIC D8i has undergone a spec and design overhaul and today we’re proud to announce the release of our revamped PUBLIC D8i that’s lighter, stronger and (feel free to quote us here) better looking then ever.

Working from the inside out, we upgraded to the premium Shimano Alfine 8-speed internal hub. Expect effortless shifting when moving or stopped and never worry about your derailleur getting bent out of shape.

On the outside, our PUBLIC D8i now boasts a 100% full chromoly frame, one-piece forged seat post and upgraded bottom bracket making it one of our lightest bikes. We gave the bike a more aggressive stem and adjusted the handlebars for a more refined, swept-back style.

We didn’t just upgrade the specs, we upgraded them stylishly. Our PUBLIC D8I now has all-black grips, tires and double-walled rims that contrast smartly with the high-polished alloy fenders. We recommend adding our slim back rack in matching polished silver or black and topping with one of our new panniers to solve all your load carrying needs. Upgrading to our premium Brooks saddle in black, aged brown or honey will take your ride to the next level of comfort and style.

Ride away on these sleek wheels today at the special introductory price of $899, list price is $1,249.

Be Seen (and Heard!) With Our Flashy New Bells

April 22nd, 2014

The simple bicycle bell is one of our favorite bike essentials. An often-overlooked accessory, a bell adds personality and safety to your ride. Easier than hollering and whistling to announce your presence, bells are a simple way of alerting bikers, pedestrians and cars of your approach. We have a new selection of bells for all styles of… Read more »

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Woodpecker Bell New Bells Incredibell Original Bell
New Bells Disco Bell New Bells
Public Bell New Bells Federico Red Brass Bell

The simple bicycle bell is one of our favorite bike essentials. An often-overlooked accessory, a bell adds personality and safety to your ride. Easier than hollering and whistling to announce your presence, bells are a simple way of alerting bikers, pedestrians and cars of your approach. We have a new selection of bells for all styles of riders, from unique bells crafted of cherry wood to bells equipped with flashing disco LED lights. Visit our website to see (and hear!) our fun new bell collection.

Hot New Single-Speeds – $299

November 20th, 2013

For the past few years, we’ve had many customers ask us to design and offer an affordable single-speed PUBLIC bike that doesn’t compromise on quality and design. Voilà: The new PUBLIC C1 and PUBLIC V1. Single-speed bikes have a great tradition going back 120 years, when all bikes had only one gear, and you’ll see… Read more »

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For the past few years, we’ve had many customers ask us to design and offer an affordable single-speed PUBLIC bike that doesn’t compromise on quality and design. Voilà: The new PUBLIC C1 and PUBLIC V1.

Single-speed bikes have a great tradition going back 120 years, when all bikes had only one gear, and you’ll see them in classic films like The Bicycle Thief. They continue to be ridden today both for track racing and as city bikes around the world. Our new PUBLIC single-speeds come out of this tradition, foregoing multiple gears in favor of an economic and efficient drivetrain. (But unlike track racing bikes or fixies, on our single-speeds you can stop pedaling and coast whenever you like.) They are simple, lightweight, stylish, affordable, and fun.

PUBLIC V1 Single-Speed Bikes in Gold and Royal BlueThe PUBLIC C1 comes in Yellow and Turquoise and the PUBLIC V1 comes in Gold and Royal Blue. Ideally suited for trips around town, casual riding with friends and weekend jaunts through the park – these bikes are intended for a flat or moderately hilly terrain. We have carefully selected the ideal gearing for rolling hills as well as flatter routes.

We challenge you to find a better single-speed city bike at this price point that features strong dual pivot caliper brakes on both front and rear tires, durable steel frame, kickstand, matching painted inside rims, fenders, and chainguard.

Limited Supply at Introductory Price of $299 (Retail $449, Save $150)

Our new PUBLIC C1 and PUBLIC V1 bikes are now available for pre-order purchase for a special introductory price of only $299. We will have them ready to ship to your door, or to be picked up at one of our Bay Area stores in early December, right in time for the holidays. We think our new single-speed bikes are an ideal gift for yourself or for a special someone who wants an entry-level bike or a seasoned rider who wants a simple, around town ride.

We only produced a few hundred of these single-speed bikes for the holidays so pre-order now because we anticipate selling out very quickly.

New Lower Priced Bike Shipping

PUBLIC Bikes $55 Flat Rate Bike ShippingAlong with our new line of even more affordable bikes, we’re announcing a new lower-priced bike shipping option for online orders. We’re calling it Find Your Own Mechanic shipping. For a flat $55 anywhere in the continental US, you can now choose to ship your bike in a smaller factory box without pre-assembly. Instead of our Ready to Ride shipping option, where our mechanics build and tune your bike in our Bay Area warehouse before shipping to your door, you can now choose to find your own local bike shop to assemble your new PUBLIC bike after it’s delivered to you. Learn more about all of our bike delivery options here.

Top 10 Reasons to E-Bike

October 16th, 2013

Hi, I’m Rob, founder of PUBLIC and a daily e-bike rider. I’ve put together my top ten reasons for buying an e-bike, as an experienced rider and advocate. They are a thrill. You will ride more often. They make hills a non-issue. I like climbing hills on my road bike, and when we ride for… Read more »

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Hi, I’m Rob, founder of PUBLIC and a daily e-bike rider. I’ve put together my top ten reasons for buying an e-bike, as an experienced rider and advocate.

PUBLIC M8 Electric Mixte Electric Bike in San Francisco
PUBLIC D8 Electric BionX Bike in San Francisco
PUBLIC M8 Electric BionX e-bike in San Francisco
PUBLIC M8 BionX Electric Mixte electric bike in San Francisco
  1. They are a thrill.
  2. You will ride more often.
  3. They make hills a non-issue. I like climbing hills on my road bike, and when we ride for exercise we typically look for steep hills. It feels good to sweat and hammer up a hill, and you always get the rewarding descent. But to me there is no pleasure in riding hills in the city when dressed in work clothes. With an e-bike, I can ride up even the steepest hills without puffing, with about as much effort as walking.
  4. They are friend-friendly. If you have a partner or friend who does not ride as vigorously as you, on an e-bike they can keep up with you (or stay ahead of you).
  5. Park anywhere for free.
  6. Ride in bike lanes to avoid traffic.
  7. Saves money (no license, insurance, or parking meters).
  8. Speed. If you want to zip past the other cyclists you can, some will chuckle, others will glare.
  9. Effortless function. You can carry twenty extra pounds of anything and not even know it.
  10. Now equipped with disc brakes our new e-bikes are safer than ever.

Announcing new electric bikes from PUBLIC

October 4th, 2013

Listen up. We are introducing several electric bikes this month at PUBLIC. I want to strongly encourage any and all bicycle lovers to take a close look at these and, if possible, take one out for a test ride. If you’re in the Bay Area or Seattle, we’ve got several models we can loan you… Read more »

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Listen up. We are introducing several electric bikes this month at PUBLIC. I want to strongly encourage any and all bicycle lovers to take a close look at these and, if possible, take one out for a test ride. If you’re in the Bay Area or Seattle, we’ve got several models we can loan you for a quick test ride.

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PUBLIC D8 Electric in Black

I don’t often make product endorsements this strong. But I have been checking out e-bikes for five years, watching them explode in popularity all over Europe. I’ve also been riding these e-bikes every day for several months, and I have become an addict, an evangelist, and a proselytizer. I think these bikes are game changers, commute changers, and even life changers for some of us. The electrical assist function is perhaps the biggest technology change in bikes since the invention of the derailleur to change your gears. They will not replace our basic bikes for beauty and simplicity. And why should they? But e-bikes offer some terrific benefits that will encourage many of us to ride more often. Find out more about the advantages of electric bikes on our website.

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PUBLIC M8 Electric in Navy

I am fortunate to have several different bikes and a Vespa in my garage. Depending on my mood and what my day demands, I always have to decide which is the best vehicle to ride. Now that I have an electric bike I find myself choosing it way more often than the others because it gives me the most flexibility, speed, and fun. My daily commute involves two stretches that are no fun: a mile stretch of flat grey asphalt, headwinds off the Golden Gate Bridge, and a steep half-mile uphill to my apartment. The e-bike solves the grind at the end of my day.

If I only had the space and budget for one two-wheeled vehicle in my life in San Francisco, it would be an e-bike. For any of us that have three to twenty-mile commutes or a hilly commute and are fortunate to live some place with a garage or elevator, an e-bike is a compelling option.

A Taste of Guatemala

September 13th, 2013

We’ve been serving coffee in our South Park neighborhood since July, and customers have been lining up for the special Saint Frank coffee drinks. Saint Frank offers a special roast from very special Guatemalan beans and this creates a taste experience that is as unique as it is rich, aromatic, and flavorful. I’ve been grinding… Read more »

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Coffee-Grid-v4_blog

We’ve been serving coffee in our South Park neighborhood since July, and customers have been lining up for the special Saint Frank coffee drinks. Saint Frank offers a special roast from very special Guatemalan beans and this creates a taste experience that is as unique as it is rich, aromatic, and flavorful. I’ve been grinding my own beans and making my own espresso drinks for over thirty years, and I can attest to the fact that the Saint Frank coffee is exceptional. The youth driven coffee culture is taking coffee to entirely new level in sophistication.

We’re now making Saint Frank’s freshly roasted beans available to all of our customers by shipping directly to your door.

St Frank Coffee
“Frankly” speaking, we should not sell this special product at a discount. But we think that once you’ve brewed this in your own kitchen you’ll be back for more. The single origin coffee is that special. The farm where it is raised is called Retiro (which means “retreat”). The coffee is comprised of the traditional heirloom varieties of Bourbon and Typica and grows under the shade of tall Grevillea trees. The result is a great representation of a classic Antigua coffee from Guatemala: elegant, well balanced with a rich aroma and a very sweet taste.*

Juan Luis Barrios Ortega produces these unique coffee beans. The Ortega Family has been growing coffee for 100 years near Chimaltenango in Guatemala, and the farm has been in Juan’s family since 1832. They are one of the most environmentally progressive estates in Guatemala and use innovative sustainable practices for coffee production, forest preservation and management.

Here’s how our program works:

Your Beans Roasted Tuesday and Shipped Thursday Every Week

Get your order to us by Monday, 12:00pm PST for a Tuesday roast and we will ship to you on Thursday. You will receive freshly roasted coffee beans. You’ll need to grind them yourself, and if you do not have a coffee grinder – it’s about time you did! The aromatics and flavor imparted by freshly roasted ground coffee makes for coffee drinks that are astoundingly sumptuous.

*The package that the coffee arrives in is equally as elegant as the coffee itself. The graphic design is the work of Paula Scher of Pentagram. Scher was awarded the 2013 Communication Design award from the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, and has been distinguishing herself for decades as an artist and designer. The PUBLIC logo evolved from her poster for PUBLIC Works.