By B. Simm
CALGARY — Leaving Toronto in 2006 where he worked as a messenger, a bike mechanic and a camera assistant in the film industry, Joe Nunn arrived in Calgary with the intention of working for his brother who owned a painting company. Within a few months he was back in the courier business and started up a mobile repair shop pulling a trailer behind his bike.
“I had done it before on Toronto Island. And I got a permit to set up on the bike path here in 2007. It grew, I sort of had this train going. I had one trailer, then a second with gear piled on top and bikes on top of that. It got kind of crazy,” recalls Nunn.
Initially he thought about getting a “sea can” (shipping container) and permission to have a temporary building on the bike path as his shop, then someone suggested an old delivery truck. “Before all the food trucks showed up it was possible to get one of these Grumann Kurbmasters,” says Nunn of his 1981 mobile unit formerly owned by Canpar Couriers. “The guys I bought it from called it the Titanic. But my mechanic took care of all the noisy problems.”
The Kurbmaster is a big empty aluminum cube that Nunn cut a square hole out of one side so he has easy access to move bikes in and out of the truck. People know he’s open for business and can see him at work. Inside the mobile workshop it’s a full scale operation with bike repair stand, a bench and wall covered with hand tools, a drill press and other specialized equipment like a bearing press and taps to fix bottom bike brackets. “I’ve got a bit of tool fetish,” confesses Nunn. “So if I’m at Canadian Tire and I see something I like, I buy it. I’ve got the space.”
On a Wednesday morning at 11 a.m., Joe’s Garage is parked up on the sidewalk right outside the Husky Energy building on the corner of 7 St. and 8 Ave. SW. There are six bikes leaning up against the Kurbmaster. Nunn’s already fixed two of them. “Depending how extensive the job is, in some cases it can take two hours, in others 15 minutes,” says Nunn for most of his repairs.
For pricing, locations and to contact Joe Nunn directly go Joe’s Garage at http://joesgarage.mobi.AB, Alberta, bike, bike repair, Joe Nunn, Joe's Garage, mobile bike repair