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Spinlister is a new service that allows mountain bikers to rent their rigs to other riders when they’re not using them. And on the flip side, Spinlister makes it easy to find a bike to borrow when you’re on the road and want to check out the local trails!

Here’s how it works: anyone can list their bike as available to rent and the owner sets the price for hourly, daily, and weekly rentals. The owner fills in details about the bike: the type (sadly there’s no option for fat bikes at the moment), size, and any accessories that are included in the rental (helmet, bell, lights, etc.) There’s also a description area where the owner can describe components plus upload photos of the bike.

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Renters search for bikes by type, size, and location. Contact happens through the website or mobile app and the renter pays for the rental using a credit card entered online. Each bike profile shows previous renters’ reviews of the bike and also lets renters know how quickly the owner usually responds to rental requests.

Spinlister takes a 17.5% cut out of rental fees but it’s free to list your bike(s). The company offers up to $10,000 in insurance coverage for bikes listed on the service, though it sounds like claims could be tricky. (Basically, renters are responsible for loss or damage but Spinlister will step in and cover your bike up to $10K in the event that the renter doesn’t come through. Coverage is not available in all countries.) There’s also a clause in the rental agreement stating that neither Spinlister or the bike owner are liable in the event of injury on the bike.

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I listed one of my 29er mountain bikes on Spinlister for a brief period and though I didn’t receive any inquiries, I see a lot of potential in a service like this, particularly on the bike rental side. While it’s usually pretty easy to find nice mountain bikes to rent in MTB destinations like Park City, try finding a decent MTB for rent in Atlanta or even Albuquerque.

Not only that, mountain bikers can use a service like Spinlister to find bikes to try before buying. Want to throw your leg over a Santa Cruz Bronson for a few days to make sure you love it? Find one in your size nearby and rent it! Not only can you try the bike but you can also find out what the owner thinks of the bike. Fatbikurious? Rent one and see what all the hype is about.

Spinlister could also be a good option for renting bikes for racing and events. Want to try cyclocross this season? Find a bike and give it a go! Rent a road bike for that charity road ride you’ve been meaning to do.

At the moment, the bike selection on Spinlister varies from somewhat limited to non-existent, depending on where you’re searching and the type of bike you need. For example, if you want to rent a bike to ride with Greg in Salida, you’ll come up empty (better to go to Absolute Bikes anyway.) Still, the potential is there–just think about all the bikes that sit idle during the week just in your own garage!

If you’re looking to make a few bucks or need a way to pay your race fees and bike upgrades this year, consider listing your bike on Spinlister. Maybe I’ll end up renting your rig the next time I’m in town.

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# Comments

  • Greg Heil

    I like this idea! Sounds exactly like a VRBO or Air BnB for mountain bikes. My main concern, though, would be wear and tear. Components degrade and wear out so quickly that I think the rental cost would still need to be quite high to cover the impact that your bike would take from all those miles.

    I could really see this if you have a couple of decent back up bikes that you could rent out, while NOT renting your super-nice go-to ride. Maybe people wouldn’t be as stoked on a couple-year-old rig, but I’d be less upset about something going wrong on a cheaper bike.

  • Michael Paul

    I see this is a bonus for places like western Washington where there is virtually nowhere to rent a bike, as long as the rates are reasonable and you get a capable bike for the trails you plan to ride.

    If you rent a bike for a week in Moab for example, expect to replace a pair of tires and brake pads.

    I am curious how you can justify not refunding a deposit based on some significant wear/tear…I guess you better get some good before/after photos in case there is any question.

    FYI: I have been to ABQ several times and there seems to be plenty of places to rent a decent bike (i.e. Sport Systems), but finding one in Birmingham is a different story.

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