Riding your bike was like having a license to go anywhere (as long as you were home when the street lights came on.) In the 80s, our bikes were a way to express ourselves and act like we were a little older than we were. If you wanted to sound like a motorcycle, all you had to do was grab a clothespin and a playing card, attach it to your spokes, and you were good to go.
These are some of the other bike memories that kids from the 80s will definitely remember.
1. BMX Bikes
Nothing felt cooler than racing down dirt paths and showing off some sweet freestyle moves! There were many different brands of BMX bikes, but Redline was the one we all wanted.
2. Spokey Dokeys
These were the best. If your bike was decked out in Stokey Dokeys, it was clear you meant business. They not only made your bike look cool, but they also made it sound like a rain stick, and who doesn’t love that? Well I mean, your parents probably hated it…but what kid doesn’t love that?
3. Raleigh Bikes
I remember when my older brother got his Raleigh Burner, he instantly became the coolest kid on the block. From the Chopper to the Burner, or the Bluebird to the Tomahawk, getting a Raleigh bike was the defining moment of your childhood.
4. Kelloggs Bike Reflectors
These were free in cereal boxes, but we would have paid at LEAST 75 cents each (we were kids, we didn’t have a ton of money.) Even though you told your mom you’d be home before dark, this reflectors attached to your spokes and made sure you were visible after the sun went down.
5. Electronic Noise Generators
If you wanted to go one step further than the playing card in your spokes, you grabbed one of these noise generators that would do it for you. You even got to crank the handle like a real motorcycle! ‘R-R-R-Raw Power!’ ‘Za-Zoom!’ ‘VaRoom!’
6. Racer Bikes
If you didn’t want a BMX bike, you were probably more drawn to the racer bikes. A little sleeker, and definitely faster, racer bikes meant you were a SERIOUS biker and had places to be, and needed to be there FAST.
7. Handlebar Ribbons
Girls, if you didn’t have ribbons and streamers on your bike handlebars, you weren’t committing hard enough. Sure, they tickled your wrists as you flew down the streets, but that made it more exciting, because you constantly struggled between keeping yours hands on the bars and wanting to shake the ribbons off.
They were for more than just decoration. You could put your water, your snacks, your school stuff, your friends, etc., in the baskets to make your bike a legitimately useful form of transportation. Just don’t add anything too heavy…it could break right off and hit the front wheel.