Where to get a bike
Centennial Park Cycles
Cycling has generally been seen as a sport or leisure activity, rather than transport. Many shops were started by former racing cyclists and so shops are good at stocking and selling road bikes, and maybe mountain bikes. As cycling evolves, a larger range of more practical bikes needs to be available. With mudguards for when it rains. Cargo bikes, for taking young kids (and shopping). And electric bikes for the hillier areas or longer distances. In the future, successful shops will be those that can cater to the full range of customers' needs.
Support your local bike shops in preference to buying online, because if you do, they'll be there when you need them. Search for a local one that meets your needs and has good customer service. There are a few shops around Sydney that sell cargo bikes and electric bikes.
Buying second hand has risks. Ask questions about its provenance and try and make sure it's not a stolen bike (especially from Gumtree). Double check the stolen bike listing on Bike Vault (formerly Stolen Bikes Australia). Also, you may not be able to tell if the frame is damaged. Make sure the drive train (chain and chainrings) are not worn - it will cost you a couple of hundred to replace these if they are.
Here is some advice from GlowWorm about buying second hand and cheap bikes in Sydney.
Community Bike Workshops and Recycled Bicycles
- Western Sydney Cycling Network recycles bikes back into the community, in Fairfield
- Bicycle Garden based at Sydney Park
- Bike Shed Newtown
- Cycle Recycle Club in Waterloo
Bicycle Repair or Service
Your dependable local bike shop (who you've been supporting all this time) will be there for you for repairs and servicing. There are also mobile bike mechanics who can come to your home or office to service your bike. Google: mobile bike mechanic.
Holding on to your bike
Lock it well (use a D-lock). Bikes in underground parking areas are a particular target of thieves. It's worth registering your bike (for free) with Bike Vault