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Shopping & Services

Best Eastside Bike Store on the Westside Los Angeles 2011 

Manny's Low Rider

At cramped, dimly lit Manny's Low Rider bikes, you won't find the best stuff on display hanging up on the walls and ceilings — that's where Manny stores a lot of his extensive and relatively inexpensive bike-parts inventory. Sure, current-model beach cruisers and messenger bikes pack the storefront, but a legendary Schwinn, the 1950 Phantom, isn't even at the shop. A 1948 Whizzer, the only motorized bike Schwinn ever made, is housed discreetly in a back room that feels more storage area than bike museum. And as to the whereabouts of the collector-quality Schwinn nameplates that date to the 1930s, we've been sworn to secrecy. To purchase these trophies, it takes more than money: You'll have to prove that your appreciation of the Schwinn is as great as that of Manny Gonzalez himself. Too poor to afford one as a kid, he learned how to handle-glide test riding repairs at an uncle's bicycle shop. No wonder he's most comfortable repairing bikes in the back of this Venice old-school locals' favorite. 1613 Lincoln Blvd., Venice; (310) 306-3452.

—Tibby Rothman

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