One Street News
Vol. 7, Issue 2
- The New World of Publishing
- Resources – Freeway Removal Campaigns
- Hot Topics – Bike Shift Lever Latest: Melting Scrap Aluminum
- Supporter Spotlight – New Belgium Brewing Company
By: Sue Knaup, Executive Director
Over the past ten years the publishing industry has fractured as traditional houses became next to impossible to work with and authors set out on their own to publish their words. Others noted this trend and started their own publishing houses free from the stifled policies of the mega houses. Now there are so many of these independent publishers they are holding their own with the big guys. Nobody cares who published a book as long as its contents are valuable.
One Street had to consider all of this as we looked ahead to the books we need to publish to serve leaders working to increase bicycling. Following proven indie publisher models, we set up One Street Press and published Defying Poverty with Bicycles in 2012 as our first title. Next up will be Backyard Aluminum Casting, our how-to manual for producing our Bike Shift Lever and Cures for Ailing Organizations, which will help readers diagnosis and treat the most common issues crippling good organizations.
Last weekend, I attended the Independent Book Publishers Association Publishing University in San Francisco where I met many entrepreneurial heads of small publishing companies. Some were just a few steps ahead of One Street Press and happy to share advice and resources that helped them at our stage. Others had been at it for twenty or thirty years, still proud to offer caring, hands-on assistance to all of their authors. That seems to be a common thread that ties all of us together—commitment to author support to create special books.
While some of the sessions, such as those on e-books and contracts, had me scribbling notes faster than I could read later, I am quite sure my connections with other indie publishers will prove to be the most valuable takeaway from this conference.
By: Sue Knaup, Executive Director
While in San Francisco I managed to steal away a few times to pedal around the city reminiscing about my earlier life as a bike messenger there in the 1980s. One spot that stopped me cold was at the Ferry Building where I crossed the Embarcadero toward Market Street. All I could do was look up at a sky I never would have seen as a messenger because back then that stretch of the city was enshrouded by an overhead freeway. That freeway was removed in 1991 and replaced by a park-like boulevard that now draws crowds of families, entertainers and enjoyers.
As I stared up and back at the Ferry Building, which I couldn’t have seen from that vantage point in the ‘80s, I realized it was time to update One Street’s Freeway Removal section on our Traffic Evaporation web page. To my delight, a quick web search of the latest freeway removal projects brought up another one for San Francisco. This proposal is to remove the 280 freeway that now slices through the diverse neighborhoods south of Market.
I rode the 280 once as a bike messenger figuring it would be the quickest way from downtown to my delivery at Candlestick Park. Quickest way to a heart attack would have been closer to the truth! Transforming that blighting death trap into a human-scale boulevard will reconnect neighborhoods and reopen the sky to areas too long crushed under its shadow.
Are their freeways you think your city could live without? Take a look at the links on that page to find all the inspiration you’ll need to make a proposal for freeway removal.
By: Sue Knaup, Executive Director
Normally this section is reserved for controversial topics. Today I’m taking a more literal approach to describe my triumphant use of our charcoal furnace for melting scrap aluminum for our upcoming Bike Shift Levers. Wow, was it hot!
The easy part was digging the hole, just larger than the flower pot then packing dry sand around the pot for insulation. I had fitted a metal conduit joiner to the bottom of the pot then attached a plastic hose to it for the air supply. I had also welded a crucible from a short piece of 3.5 inch diameter steel pipe, plugging it on one end and adding a rebar handle.
Then my hunt for a hand pump failed. I needed something that would provide enough oxygen to turn the coals red hot and none of the stores in Prescott carried anything of the sort, not even the secondhand stores. So I found a nice double action hand pump for less than $20 online. It arrived yesterday and finally I was ready to melt some cans!
Once the coals were hot, it took about half an hour to melt twenty cans plus some other scraps like an aluminum plate and lids from tennis ball cans. This mix turned into a mesmerizing silver liquid which I poured into a cupcake pan. I can re-melt these ingots when our mold is ready.
This first run taught me several important lessons about proper preparation and pre-heating. Bulk charcoal is my next item to hunt down as yesterday’s test run used more than five pounds. I am capturing all of the details in our how-to manual for anyone interested in giving this a try. This manual will be available for purchase through book vendors all over the world and will be part of the package our license partners receive along with their own permanent molds.
On that note, the mold design, which I featured in our January newsletter, is completed. Aaron did an outstanding job and the drawings he delivered have enabled me to seek out a capable machinist. One in particular stands out and I will hear back from him by early April.
For now, I am focusing on capturing all the details of melting scrap aluminum in the manual so I will be ready for pouring into our first mold. The first shift levers will go out to some of our generous Kickstarter supporters for testing. With their feedback we will refine the mold design in preparation for full production. Lots of hot fun!
The New Belgium Brewing Company stands out as one of One Street’s topmost supporters. Ever since our founding in 2007 they have supported our programs, especially those designed for disadvantaged people and distressed neighborhoods. Their commitment to serving social needs and the value bicycles bring to communities shows through everything they do. From employee innovations that improve the sustainability of their breweries to generous support of socially minded organizations, New Belgium is an extraordinary model of a social business.
Their latest support of One Street’s Social Bike Business program is helping us work with some of our most-likely-to-succeed local partners as well as charge ahead with important projects like our Bike Shift Lever and publications that help all of our program partners. Thank you New Belgium for all your great work and for your continued support of One Street!