Did You Know?

While the Chicago region’s population grew by 18 percent since 1980, the traffic increased by 66 percent in the same period.

Active Trans throws a spoke wrench into your Southland holiday plans

I’m an experienced, self-taught home bike mechanic, and have the deep knuckle scars and boxes of stripped & gouged bike parts and tools to prove it. During this season of peace and goodwill, Active Trans is revealing another path to you: Worth Cycles-N-Sports, tucked up against the Tri-State at 6559 W. 111th St. in Worth, Ill., is offering both bike repair classes and gift certificates for classes at a 10% holiday discount for Active Trans members who purchase before December 23. Instructor Jim Saplis has been teaching basic bike repair, less-basic bike repair, and full bike rebuild classes for a decade or more, a couple years now in the Southland, and somehow he and I never met. (Maybe he doesn't drink beer – that might explain it.)

Classes are scheduled as they fill up, which Jim says has been about every two weeks. About the class, Jim also says:

Classes consist of no more than four people and one or two instructors for all classes. You will work on your own bike. It's very hands on and all appropriate questions are addressed and answered. You will be grouped with people of similar skill level.

There are three current class levels being offered:
1. Beginner (approximately 4 hours)
2. Intermediate (approximately 5 hours)
3. Over haul (2 sessions of approximately 5 hours)

Included in the class is a Park Tool School manual (which can be picked up ahead of time to study up and prepare questions), all necessary tools and lube, bike stands and a completion certificate.

Bike mechanics classes are a great resource for the Southland. Contact Jim at (708)361-0440 or e-mail Know of other Southland bike mechanics classes? Send them in, I’ll put them up.