Pop quiz hotshot: It's 'round midnight mid you have to make a quick trip to the bodega five blocks away. But when you get on your bicycle you realize a tire is flat. Your local bike shop won't be open until 9 a.m. What do you do?
Baruch Herzfeld, the owner of Traif Bike Gesheft (which is Yiddish for “non-kosher bike shop") , has a solution.
Herzfeld placed a vending machine outside of his shop to help riders repair their bikes.
The vending machine, on South Sixth Street in Williamsburg, sells a range of items including bicycle tire patch kits, pumps, and other items needed for a quick repair.
"We see somebody with a flat, we try to help them. Now we have something that works 24 hours," Herzfeld toldNY Times City Room blog.
But the bicycle vending machine idea is not an original.
Machinery Row Bicycles in Madison, WI., teamed up with bike maker Trek to sell accessories out of a vending machine, and Aaron's Bicycle Repair in Seattle opened its own machine in 2005 and not only sells inner tubes and patch kits but also energy bars and gels.
Traif Bike Gesheft's website states that they did not come up with the idea to make more money. Instead, they are looking to better serve their customers.
Herzfeld said so far only a few people have stopped by to purchase items from his machine since being installed -- but word is just getting rolling.