Getting to know: Forrest Scott, Mechanic
Since August 2008, Forrest has been wrenching on bikes for customers and program participants at the bike shop. Whether he has a rusty three-speed cruiser or a high-end mountain bike in the stand, Forrest can solve any mechanical challenge. He’s managed to develop a reputation for his mechanical abilities, patience and approachability; our shop customers request him specifically on a regular basis. He’s also an urban farmer and is responsible for the mini garden behind the bike shop.
What brought you to the Community Cycling Center?
I was freshly moved to Portland and the Community Cycling Center was close to where I lived. After coming in and talking with staff members and finding that the Community Cycling Center was more than just a bike shop I was hooked. Also I liked the idea of building and refurbishing bikes rather than assembling the same pre-built new models.
Why do you work here?
‘Cause it’s fun – I like my co-workers a bunch and our customers are great. And we have a rad mission.
What is your job title? What do you do?
I am a mechanic. I mostly work on peoples’ bikes. This can range from a simple flat fix or estimate up at the front stand, or big jobs like tune-ups and overhauls. I also spend a lot of time helping people find the right parts and accessories for their projects.
What aspect of our work do you find most exciting right now?
This time of year is all about building Create a Commuter bikes. I enjoy working on Bike Club and Create a Commuter bikes because it gives me a connection to our community programs.
What is your dream bike?
With the new United Bicycle Institute campus in town I’d love to take the frame building course and build my own bike. I’ve been obsessed with old cruisers recently and want something modern with the old cruiser aesthetic. I like the work of Curtis Inglis and his Retrotec line of bikes, Todd Ingermanson’s Black Cat bikes are hot-dogs, and Wess Williams’ Willits brand builds bikes I like too. And Jonesâ€¦ Too many inspiring frame builders to pick any one.
What do you do when you’re not here?
I like riding bikes, but I like running and hiking too. Haven’t been to school since I graduated in 2008 but I just went to a lecture by David Korten, co-founder of Yes! Magazine. He has experience with international development and economics. As a result he has lots of ideas about how to restructure our economy and society around equity and real wealth in order to provide a better quality of life for everyone and do nice things for our planet at the same time. Inspiring.
Tell us your favorite Community Cycling Center story.
I taught Bike Club a couple springs ago, it was fun. But the best part for me was seeing one of the students from my club walk into the shop almost a year later, with the bike she’d earned, and demand that I be the one to fix it. I see lots of Bike Club bikes and riders around our neighborhood almost daily and it makes me smile.
Photo by Josh Tillinghast