What’s in a bicycle name?

We heard on Monday that Xtracycle will start shipping out the new batch of Edgerunners mid-month.  Since we’re just getting the frame, it will likely be at least another week beyond that before our bike is ready, but it should be road-worthy by the end of April.  I have to admit that when they pushed back the date from March to “early to mid-April,” I was hoping for more on the “early” side, but at least this is better than another delay.

My least favorite thing about the Edgerunner (and I say this having never seen one in person, much less ridden one) is the name.  It conjures up images of scooting along on the very far right side of the road, absolutely the last place you ever want to operate a bicycle.

Riding far to the right (i.e., at the edge of the road) makes you invisible and irrelevant to other road users.  It is also the place you encounter many of the dangers that cause the most common kind of bike crash (a solo fall) like debris, grates, pavement imperfections, wet leaves, sand, etc.  This is not how I ride and this is not what I teach.

So I am less than excited about the implications of the model name of this bike, but I’m also not huge on naming bikes.

I oh-so-creatively dubbed my Kona Jake, “Baby Jake.”  BUB (short for Back-Up Bike, my Schwinn Voyager) never really had a name, until I needed a way to distinguish between Baby Jake and BUB when writing here.  Before that, I may have also referred to BUB as “Baby.”

At any rate, I don’t really use the names I give my bicycles.  I don’t wake up in the morning and say, “Hmm, which bike will I ride today?  I think I’ll take BUB.”

I may just end up referring to the Edgerunner as “the longtail,” which easily distinguishes it from any of our other bikes.  I could also rename it “Roadrunner,” which deals with my main objection to the name, although I’m also not sure “runner” is terribly appropriate, as cargo bikes are not really built for speed (maybe it would deserve that name if I had electric assist!).  Another option, in a continuation of my not-so-creative names, would be “Blue.”

We’ll probably wait to settle on a name, if any, until we actually have the bike, so we can get a feel for her (his?) personality, but it’s not too early to start brainstorming.

So, what do you call your bike?  And, any suggestions for a good name for a blue Xtracycle Edgerunner longtail?








  1. Rebecca says:

    Well, you know my bicycles’ names, but for the sake of discussion, I’m adding them here. I like the names both for the identification purposes, and because it infers some personality. I also name my cars, for what it’s worth.

    My ten-speed is The Radish. It’s red, and a mixte with drop handlebars and downtube shifters. I wanted a name that reflected the color but was a bit androgynous.

    My upright bicycle is Fleur, because she’s Dutch (I looked up popular girl names in Dutch culture, and since she’s a simple black bicycle, I liked the flowery name – fleur means flower in French).

    My mountain bike, which needs some TLC, is Julek, which is actually a friend’s nickname for her son, but which I liked because it rhymes with Trek, the bike’s make. I liked that it was both masculine and diminutive. The frame is just 14.5″. I am going to need to see about getting it resized. After the stretch on The Radish and the upright position on Fleur (both closer to 16-17″ frames, I believe), I feel very cramped on the MTB, and face issues with toe-overlap and too-narrow handlebars. Maybe I’ll take Julek in this weekend for a little TLC. Both Fleur and the Radish are good to go, but I’d love to get a double kickstand for Fleur. Her front basket tips her over – even with the kickstand – unless her front wheel is turned hard to the left.

    1. Rebecca | Seven2Seven8 says:

      I’m thinking about names for the Xtracycle. Since it’s the third bike (assuming you’re keeping Baby Jake and Bub), Trey would work, or you could play with the “blue” theme. Azure, Azul, Cielo (Italian for sky), or, since they are (I believe) made in California, you could name it Delmar, which both references a well-known St. Louis City street and means “of the sea”.

      1. Melissa @ HerGreenLife says:

        Azul did cross my mind, but Cielo . . . you might be on to something there 🙂

    1. Melissa @ HerGreenLife says:

      Zhaan is an all-blue female alien in the Sci-Fi series Farscape.

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