to start over by closing all the stores but the one he had at
the popular Irvine Spectrum mall in Orange County, which
was still making a little money. This was at the time when the
economy headed into the recession.
To make ends meet, Sam sold his house to pay off the
debts. Go-Ped sales were dropping off, but he had one ace
up his sleeve. The Irvine store had been known for all the
extreme toys, which was where the name “Myron’s Extreme
Machines” came from. They had crazy stuff, like a blender
that ran off a Weedeater motor, with Harley-esque ape-hang-er handlebars, and NOS-powered Go-Peds and a jet-pow-ered street luge.
WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS,
ENTER THE E-BIKE
About this time they started selling electric bikes, but they
were the original stuff—heavy bikes with lead-acid batteries.
They weren’t selling a lot at this point. By 2008 mall management had moved them to a bad location and sales tanked.
They moved the store to Fullerton.
Lithium-ion-powered bikes were just starting to come in,
but they were much more expensive. Sam went to Interbike
and saw that the bikes were becoming popular. He started
carrying more bikes— 18 different brands and 50–60 floor
models, actually. His philosophy is that you have to have it
in stock to demo it and sell it. He even has a trike that he’s
about to add an electric-assist kit to. Since it’s for a trike, this
kit even comes with a reverse gear!
He and his wife, Kannika, are so committed to knowing
every bike from every brand they carry that they recently
parked their motorhome 20 miles away from the shop and
rode a different one there and back every night from the shop
just to have real experience on them.
Sam’s customer service is so good and his customers are
so loyal that when he moved the store into a different part
of the center, they were the ones who came in to help paint
the new shop. Being in the shop and seeing him interact
with them, you’d understand why. He knows his customers
by name, and often they buy more than one bike from him.
As the largest and oldest electric bike and scooter shop in
Southern California, the Electric Bicycle Center in Fullerton is
a great place to look at a wide variety of brands and types of
electric bicycles. ■
Electric Bicycle Center
400 E Commonwealth Avenue
Fullerton, CA 92832