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  1. #1
    JOCP Senior Advisor
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    A Plexi glass bike?

    Well lately I've been toying with the idea of making a bike just for the fun of it, nothing serious mind you/

    My cousin has come into possecion of a rather large block of acrlyic(sp) and can get some plexi glass (he works with it a lot)

    Anyone ever try it? Like I said it isn't anything serious, just something to try...

  2. #2
    Senior Member Brian's Avatar
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    Why not just use cardboard?

  3. #3
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    Mill a solid triangle as the frame and reinforce it with metal, it should be good, if not heavy.
    You have life insurance, right?

  4. #4
    Senior Member Brian's Avatar
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    Plexiglass, like regular glass, lacks the qualities necessary to make a functional bike frame. You could seriously do better with laminated cardboard.

  5. #5
    Recumbent Evangelist
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    You could make some nice fairings, though.

  6. #6
    JOCP Senior Advisor
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    Quote Originally Posted by Expatriate
    Why not just use cardboard?

    Because you can see cardboard! Yes I know the idea is crazy, but its just a little project to kill time...odds are I'll never get around to it just wanted to ask if it'd ever been done

  7. #7
    Dog is my co-pilot 2manybikes's Avatar
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    The frame of the future will just be a magnetic field holding the components in place, there will be no frame tubes.

    And wireless computers still won't work.

  8. #8
    Just riding andygates's Avatar
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    I'd start with two thick sheets, milled to a rough frame-shape. Then I'd clamp those sheets around the essential frame bearings - headset, bb, seatpost. The effect would be like that Moulton recumbent that's somewhere online.

  9. #9
    Recumbent Evangelist
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2manybikes
    The frame of the future will just be a magnetic field holding the components in place, there will be no frame tubes.

    And wireless computers still won't work.
    I'd hate to lose power while bombing down a hill at 60 km/h... Ouch!

  10. #10
    Recumbent Evangelist
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    Oh, but as for building a plexiglass frame...

    You will need to build it in layers. Picture the tubes of a regular bike. When you remove all the components, the metal frame can sit nearly flat on its side. This is the shape you'll need to cut from the plexiglass. The "tubes" will need to be wider than the typical metal frame tubes, because plexiglass isn't as strong. You will need several layers of plexiglass, maybe 4 or 5, sandwitched together and glued with epoxy. You cannot use superglue because it will shrink when it sets, and warp your frame. Also, you may need a vacuum chamber for curing the epoxy, to draw out any bubbles that will compromise the integrity of the frame. Some parts of the plexi frame will need to be braced with strips of steel, basically any place you will be attaching a component. You may even want to layer the steel supports in with the plexiglass panels, then run several bolts through the layers. If you do use bolts, use a few of them, and make sure that they are spread out so that they do not create a pressure point on the plexiglass.

    It will take many, many steps and lots of waiting to get this thing right. But if you do it right, and pay attention to where the pressure points will be, I think it could be done.

  11. #11
    Non Tribuo Anus Rodentum and off to the next adventure (RIP) Stacey's Avatar
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    I thought acetone was the bonding agent du jour for plexiglass?

  12. #12
    Senior Member va_cyclist's Avatar
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    By the time you get done with all the cutting and layering and bonding, it probably won't be transparent anymore.

  13. #13
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    Somewhere online there issome plans to build HPVs that use plexy and an old stoce/plywood to heat then a bike pump to blow a a bubble out of the plexy---cool plans.Coudl build a cool Clear tank for a cruzer,maybe lights inside/or ??---sam

  14. #14
    Senior Member Brian's Avatar
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    If you do a Google search for building your own fairings, you will find the site for making them. But they generally use Lexan, as plexi shatters easily.

  15. #15
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    I know ,you could put one of those snowmen inside it so the glitter(snow) would be falling around him as you ride---I got to get some more beer!

  16. #16
    Hacker Maximus
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    Oh about bambo...???





    Here are Some More pictures of the Calfee bambo tandem and road bike


    actually take a look at BCD frames,, Alex makes them using carbon fibre tubes from windsurf mastils and plywood to make the cores for the linkages and swingarms..not the best but for sure a simple and very efficient way


    personally i love his work and how flexible he can be with so few materials at hand..

    here is his site BCD racing and a Few Fotos I collect of his frames

    actually if you can find Policarbonate A.K.A. lexan you will have suffient strengh but the frame will be so heavy that will be pointless, plus I will love to see how you machine it, since is one of the most dificult materials to form and to make it even wrost is almost impossible to "Polish it" to make it "kind of clear...

    I will say sell the acrilic you have On E-bay and get a welder and some tubes and go from there, after you get use to making the the tradicional and easy way, you can try other methods like the one you propose,,for sure acrilic Sucks to make bike frames and almost anything that need to be structural

    is a million ways to make structures and they don't exactlly need your typical big tube frames, take a look at this ones.

    this "Space frame" structures are super rigid and actually not that heavy


    again keep you mind open, you can even use wood for some structures


    here is a Link to the cool Crago Bikes

    I hope this helps to inspire you a little
    Force is never as effective as Leverage.

  17. #17
    Dog is my co-pilot 2manybikes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff-o
    I'd hate to lose power while bombing down a hill at 60 km/h... Ouch!


    Later on they were all recalled due to this huge problem.

    One frame was never found. It was stolen by the invisible man, and he still rides it........sometimes you can hear him right on your back wheel late at night on a quiet road. You can almost feel him on a dark bike path sometimes. No mater what you do you can't drop him. But you try anyway.

  18. #18
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    Actually, I believe it would be Wonder Woman riding the invisible bike, as fuel is too expensive for her invisible airplane.

    You could use polester resin to cast a headset and BB. It may be possible to infuse the resin with chopped fiberglass without reducing the clarity too much.

    Use extruded Lexan tubes for the frame set.

    Of course, include LEDs inside the tubes, so the whole frame glows.

  19. #19
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    This just in: Transparent Aluminum!

    http://www.stormingmedia.us/35/3574/A357481.html

    Scotty must have sold someone the recipe.

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