Bike Review: Gary Fisher Simple City

Megan and her Gary Fisher Simple City 8-speed

Megan and her Gary Fisher Simple City 8-speed

Last Sunday, at the Women Who Bike brunch, I had the opportunity to see Megan again and get a few pictures of her great city bike – a Gary Fisher Simple City. I remembered her bike from previous brunches and was hoping I’d run into her or another one of our brunch mates who also has a Simple City as I wanted to ask them about their bikes and get some pictures. I really like the look of the bike and the front basket, and it’s got an internal hub with roller brakes on the back and caliper brakes on the front.  It’s an aluminum bike which makes it more lightweight, though i prefer steel bikes myself. Megan has the model with the 8-speed Shimano hub.

Gary Fisher Simple City 8-speed shifter

It also has the stabilizer spring on the front wheel to prevent it from wobbling back and forth when loaded – something I’m glad I have on my Omafiets too.

Gary Fisher Simple City

It also comes with a double kick-stand like I have on my Oma – another handy accessory when you’re hauling cargo around.

Gary Fisher Simple City Double Kickstand

Megan has had her bike for about a year and loves it. She looked at about 30 different bikes she says, and this is one the she landed on. It rides smoothly, and fits her well too. The 8 speeds are enough for a flat city like Chicago.   I have to say I love the basket – and the attached tied down for your lock etc, is a nice touch.

Gary Fisher Simple City lock tie-down

The only downside to this great bike is that the lovely basket is rusting away!  After only a year in Chicago, it’s starting to fall apart. Megan does ride it year-round, and is not afraid of the rain, and it’s been left outside a couple of times. Nonetheless, the basket is starting to rust and deteriorate.

Gary Fisher Simple City - rust on the basket

Lest you think this is a Chicago-only event, Megan sent a tweet out to Gary Fisher himself via Twitter, to see if there was anything he could suggest to slow down the rust on her beautiful bike.  He replied to her post with a picture of his own son’s two-year old Simple City bike, with a basket in much worse shape than her own!

@themeganproject FYI my son rode his Simple City to my place ... on Twitpic

That doesn’t give me much hope for Megan’s basket – but perhaps she can replace it with a wooden or bamboo basket since the bike itself is holding up just fine.  In the meantime though, she did add a new accessory – possibly one of the coolest-looking bike bells ever!
the coolest bike bell ever

“Ding Ding”  let’s ride indeed!!

*UPDATE:  I originally referred to this as a ‘step-through’ bike which it so obviously is not. This bike is available in a step-through model, but Megan’s is not that model. Beware the hazards of writing blogs very late at night.

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  • Sue

    What a great bike! I’m on my second Gary Fisher (for MTB riding). I had seen this bike in the catalog and thought it was a great looking bike.

  • Two Pitties in the City

    Yes, I have the aqua step-through. Mine is the Simple City 3 model, which works well for me. That basket doesn’t typically come with the 3 model, though the store was able to pull some strings and get me one. It’s disappointing that it rusts so much. Mine typically hasn’t been out in the bad weather, so I haven’t noticed it like that. I’m hoping to get back to brunch soon, and the Critical Lass ride.

    • Ms. Ding

      Well Hello there! Glad you stopped by today. 😉 Yep, your aqua step-through is quite nice as I recall. I too hope you can make to a brunch or ride soon. We miss you as well as your bike.

  • Cecily Walker

    I wonder if a yearly coat of rustoleum paint would take care of that basket and give it a bit more longevity?

    • Megan

      Do you think rustoleum spray paint would stick to a powder coated basket? I don’t want it to look worse and I haven’t had good luck with paint.

      • Ms. Ding

        Hmmm.. that’s a good question.

  • Ash L

    haha, I’m just glad I’m not crazy. the woman behind Two Pitties in the City rides the blue one and my friend Cory was just featured on Martha’s blog on hers. These are sweeping the nation!

    You know me though, I wouldn’t know what to do with a bike that weighed less than 45lbs. I’d have to tether some lead weights to the back.

    • Ms. Ding

      HA!! “lead weights”..

  • Ash L

    I’m failing to see why this bike is called a step-through. The top tube has an ever so slight angle but it isn’t even at mixte degree let along step-through.

    • Ms. Ding

      You fail to see why Ash because it is actually not called a step-through! They do make these bikes as a step-through, but this ain’t one of them. That’s what I get for writing blog posts late at night. I’ve corrected the post. Another one of our brunch riders has a teal SImple City step-through – so I must have had step-through on the brain as one look at this bike says it is not a step-through. My apologies everyone! Better proofing before hitting the ‘publish’ button next time!