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Alt Bike Culture Chopped, dropped, stretched, lifted, and otherwise cut up and put back together. The art and science of choppers, cruisers, lowriders and the vast world of mutant bicycles.

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Old 04-11-07, 12:08 PM   #1
hockeyteeth
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Crazy Bike Ideas. Too absurd?

I want to a lowrider bike, but I don't want to shell out $200. Before my imagination kicked in I thought "I'll just hack the bottom bracket shell of a frame, change the geometry and re-weld it." But then I had an epiphany! How dangerous would it be to MIG weld the links of a beefy chain together to use as a frame? I could just hack off the BB shell and weld the chain into an awesomely curvaceous shape and then weld the BB shell and some dropouts back on. I guess I would also attach a head tube and a portion of a seat tube.

Has anyone tried anything so foolish? Don't worry about impracticality, because I don't let that get in the way.

Also, PVC-framed bike?! Do you think Schedule 40 PVC would be strong enough to support 175 pounds plus the torque of pedaling?

Lastly, a mini chopper. That's a bit out of my realm of capabilities currently. But someday. Someday...


mini chopper.jpg

I think I shall go to the hardware store this weekend and prepare.
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Old 04-11-07, 12:37 PM   #2
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Donno about the chain, probably too weak.

As for PVC, just realize that when it fails, it will be horrible. Doesn't bend like steel, will break like glass and be sharp.
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Old 04-11-07, 01:30 PM   #3
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George Barris did it in the 1960s for the Eddie Munster Bike. There's a thread about it at

Eddie Munster's bike

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Old 04-11-07, 01:46 PM   #4
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Yeah, that's what made me think of it, actually. I just didn't know if that frame was welded chain or if it was forged into that shape. I might still try it, but I'd have to be meticulous with the welds.

In the meantime, I think I might just use EMT conduit. Does anyone know how easily you can bend that pipe after heating it? Maybe I'll just have to butcher a beach cruiser.
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Old 04-11-07, 03:33 PM   #5
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Indian Larry did a chopper made out of welded chain.
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Old 04-11-07, 04:06 PM   #6
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dude, SHELL OUT THE 200 BUCKS!!! then a little at a time replace the stock parts on the bike with customs you created. if you wait to ride a lowrider until you build on of the projects you mentioned, it will take FOREVER fo the "trial and error" process to produce something you could ride. by the time you order the other parts seperately and buy all the product necessary for the "trial and error" process you will spend alot more than anticipated and possibley more than what a stock bike would have costs in the first place. plus...whats your time worth? and all that time will be spent without a lowrdier to ride. this is a lesson ive learend many times over the years!!! fast eddie outty
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Old 04-11-07, 04:29 PM   #7
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Low rider sites always have chainlink frames and bars.
Personally its not my cuppa T.
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Old 04-11-07, 05:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast Eddie
dude, SHELL OUT THE 200 BUCKS!!!
The issue is that I don't enjoy riding bikes I haven't built myself as much as those I have. I am not pining for a lowrider so badly that I will die from anticipation. The 200 dollars for a complete would get me a $15 seat and $15 handlebars from my shop and I could get the wheels for about $100 from online stores. That leaves me with $40 to obtain some sort of frame and a few bucks for metallic flaked spray paint. Disregarding my time and energy, I will probably build one cheaper than I could buy one. Besides, I enjoy the building and learning process more than the final result of most of my projects, so the time and energy thing is a benefit, in my opinion.

Last edited by hockeyteeth; 07-10-07 at 11:43 PM.
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Old 04-12-07, 02:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hockeyteeth
....
In the meantime, I think I might just use EMT conduit. Does anyone know how easily you can bend that pipe after heating it? ...
Hold on a minute, you don't have to heat EMT to bend it.

http://electrical.hardwarestore.com/...er-618692.aspx

I had a hard time finding an emt bender on the web, and this one is sold without a handle (handle sold separately), but you don't have to heat the emt to bend it.
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Old 04-12-07, 03:58 PM   #10
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I've probably bent 1000 miles of emt. you do not need to heat it, but it's not the strongest stuff either; you can bend it by hand
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Old 04-12-07, 05:25 PM   #11
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Glad to hear conduit bends so easily! What do you use to bend EMT, dijos? I was thinking of just using a tree or something large and round so that I don't fold or crease the tube.
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