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Club Policies

Honor code announcement

All users of the Caltech Bike Lab are subject to the Caltech honor code: "No member of the Caltech community shall take unfair advantage of any other member of the Caltech community." We encourage members to be honest in all their dealings (not just at the Bike Lab), and so ask them not to leave a mess for others, ensure tools remain in the shop, pay fairly for all parts used, keep current on dues, and treat all equipment with respect.


Key access to the Bike Lab is subject to an annual fee of $10/year, though the fee may be waived by donation of a tool or volunteer efforts (defined in the Volunteering section). New dues are collected at the beginning of the Fall term. Members who join in the Spring or Summer terms are covered for the next year.

Key access to the Caltech Bike Lab is limited to current members of Caltech and JPL. Friends and family of Caltech/JPL members are welcome to use the shop, provided their sponsor (the current Caltech/JPL member) is present with them. The responsibility of sponsored guests lies with their sponsor.

All members will be automatically enrolled on the Bike Lab mailing list (

Other access

Office hours and repair classes are open to current Caltech/JPL members, their friends and family, and alumni. We will not turn away other attendees, but preference for space and time is given to those listed above. Our bike rides are open to everyone, but non-Caltech/JPL members may be expected to help pay for any food or drinks involved in the rides.

We reserve the right to kick anyone out of an office hour, class, or ride for being overly disruptive, harassing others, or endangering the safety of themselves or others.


The primary (and secondary, if available) manager of the Bike Lab must be a current undergraduate or graduate student. If there is need for further managers, they can be any other members of the Caltech community. Any call for new managers will be made open on the cyclists and bikeshoplist mailing lists. If the decision of a new manager cannot be resolved among the current managers and volunteers, the selection of a new manager will be put to vote amongst Bike Lab members.

Managerial duties include

  • Taking inventory of the shop and ensuring all tools are in working order.
  • Purchasing new tools.
  • Organizing classes, rides, and office hours.
  • Ensuring rags get put through rag service and any toxic chemicals are properly disposed of.

Managerial privileges include

  • Unlimited time to stash their bike at the Bike Lab, if needed.
  • Ability to freely take tools out of the shop.
  • Love and adulation.
  • The occasional free beer (or drink of preference).


Volunteers are asked to lead classes, hold office hours, or lead or support Bike Lab rides. Anyone is welcome to volunteer. A volunteer is expected to contribute at least two hours of work a month for at least one term for their fees to be waived. Alternately, they can help out with a managerial duty for the year.

Office hours for the week must be told to the shop manager by Thursday of the previous week so they can get them published in Caltech Today. Hours will be put on Caltech Today's weekly announcements and on the Bike Lab Google calendar ( Volunteers are asked to keep office hours consistent from week-to-week over a term to minimize confusion.


The Bike Lab will lead at least one introductory bike repair class per term. Additional classes are at the discretion of the shop manager and other volunteers, but are a good thing.


Shop users must sign in every time they use the shop.

Shop users are expected to clean up after themselves and are encouraged to leave the shop in better shape than they found it.

Shop users must inform the shop manager if any tool breaks or they find broken equipment, and are asked to inform the manager about any other shop-related issues. Visitors and Members must NOT take tools outside of the front door of the shop without the expressed permission of a volunteer or manager.

Members are welcome to leave their bikes at the shop for a short period of time. To ensure their bikes are left untouched, members are encouraged to put a label with their name on their bikes. Bikes are left at the shop at their owners own risk. We ask that overnight time is kept within reason, and if they leave their bike untouched for over a month without prior consultation of the managers, their bikes are considered abandoned and may be cannibalized for parts. Managers may decide to clean out the shop and reclaim any bikes around, but will give fair warning via the mailing list.

Statement on office hours and classes

The managers and volunteers for the Bike Lab are not professionals, and their advice should not be treated as coming from such. We will help visitors to the best of our knowledge but we may be wrong at times or miss important issues. Take our advice at your own risk, and if you are concerned about anything we say there are a number of books and resources on-line for repair advice. A healthy dose of skepticism is not just important for science, it's important for life.