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Published: Wednesday April 18, 2012 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Sunday May 26, 2013 MYT 1:48:48 AM

Giant bicycle brings fame and fortune to shop owner

KUALA TERENGGANU: A giant replica bicycle, which was built as a landmark for customers to locate Tarmizi Awang's bicycle shop, is a hit among cycling enthusiasts in Terengganu.

The two-metre high and three-metre wide “masterpiece” is about four times the size of a regular bicycle.

Tarmizi, 37, said customers and friends had difficulty locating his shop in Kampung Kepong here since it opened about five years ago.

“No matter how many times they come, the customers will always call to ask for directions.

“Some even got lost numerous times as my shop is not on the main road,” he told The Star yesterday.

Frustrated with the calls as they disrupted his work, Tarmizi built his “masterpiece” using recycled materials ranging from old bicycle chains, pedals as well as metal.

“I only had to buy some items such as rubber for the tyres and steel for the bicycle's frame.

“In the end, I spent some RM1,400 on materials but it could have cost more if I had not used the recycled items,” he said.

Tarmizi said the giant replica, which took a month to build before it was unveiled three years ago, had brought him good fortune.

Not only can customers find his shop easily, bicycle clubs in the state have also rented his giant bicycle for display during exhibitions and the launching of cycling events.

“The bicycle is not only giant in size but also in reputation. It has become so famous that people recognise the bicycle more than me,” he quipped.

The replica's growing popularity has boosted Tarmizi's business with the sale of bicycles having doubled.

“Even passers-by would enter my shop because of the bicycle. Backpackers from Australia, Sweden and England have come just to take a picture with my masterpiece,” he said.

The father of three daughters Liana Syafikah, seven, and Daimiah, two, and five-year-old son Aiman said that the giant bicycle had also inspired his children to be more active in cycling.

“It took a little of my influence but most of their healthy lifestyle is inspired by the giant bicycle,” he said.

For his next project, Tarmizi plans to build an even bigger replica motorcycle.

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