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  1. #1
    Senior Member jawnn's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Utility bikes project

    I want to start a movement. I want at least one person in every town to build cargo bikes that will handle a 14 by 24” box, out of used, recycled bikes.

    Yes, I know Americans are just too rich and lazy to actually use them much yet. But maybe they could be sent to the third world.

    So if anyone has too much time on their hands like me, they should do this as a hobby for now.

    It would be good to start a real kick starter business in Seattle, involving teen agers. But I do not live close enough.
    https://www.facebook.com/utilitybikeproject

    If you know of some project like this, tell me about it here.





    long bike plans.jpg
    Last edited by jawnn; 12-21-13 at 12:44 PM.
    https://www.facebook.com/utilitybikeproject

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    I have given a lot of bikes that I find to a local organization, Bikes not Bombs, which sends a lot of used bikes to the third world. The people in the receiving countries do a good job of modifying these bikes to fit local transport needs, and for other purposes we haven't thought of. But this is a charity dependent on donations and volunteer work, and I don't see how it could be much of a profitable business. .I think there are similar organizations in other US cities.

    There are some people who will ship old, and possibly stolen bikes, to some carribean countries, but I don't know muchmore than that.

  3. #3
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Here is one that has been running, long before the crowd funding,
    so the Grant Apps, as usual for Non-Profits, got written.

    Center for Appropriate Transport, in Eugene http://www.catoregon.org/
    Last edited by fietsbob; 12-31-13 at 01:01 PM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member rdlange's Avatar
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    don't like your attitude about Americans; sound like another elitist snob. have been in lots of third world nations, seen/ridden lots of bikes. as for your load forward design, typical euro=city=pavement. longtails are vastly superior for unpaved roads, paths, trails. research origin of xtracycle. bye.

  5. #5
    Senior Member SmallFront's Avatar
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    Long johns are the bomb. Easily outdoing designs like the Xtracycle with its comparably high centre of gravity, and it has the weight in between the wheels, rather than around the rear wheel.

    No, I don't have any welding skills to make one myself.

  6. #6
    Senior Member jawnn's Avatar
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    sorry but you sound like your living in denial. I am an american that lives with out a car, and I hate the shinny cars that threaten my life every day.

    I really wish people would wake up to the impending energy crisis, coming much sooner than anyone seems to know.



    quote from rdlange : "don't like your attitude about Americans; sound like another elitist snob. have been in lots of third world nations, seen/ridden lots of bikes. as for your load forward design, typical euro=city=pavement. longtails are vastly superior for unpaved roads, paths, trails. research origin of xtracycle. bye."
    Last edited by jawnn; 04-28-14 at 12:51 PM.
    https://www.facebook.com/utilitybikeproject

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    You are preaching to the choir. The challenge is to convince the grat mass of our fellow humans to change their ways.

  8. #8
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    don't like your attitude about Americans
    wow .. Texans are touchy ?

    realistically as the oil is harder to get it will be gotten to , just cost more ,
    now that it's $100 a barrel its affordable to use extraordinary measures

    just wont get the status quo to stop influencing the politicians ..
    Since they are dependent on each other.

    change and the future dont have the power of the purse
    like the wealth gathered by the old system, that wants Growth at All costs.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 12-24-13 at 07:55 PM.

  9. #9
    Senior Member rdlange's Avatar
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    So I guess it's agreed that everyone else here except 'jawnn', who doesn't seem to want us to know where he's from, is lazy and greedy? Checked out his blog and it seems very techy. Like to see him convince some Afghan villager to try a long john on a local trail. Or a Pinoy on the road in Sorsogon.

    No car either. Poverty suck don't it? Oh wait... it's called 'voluntary simplicity'! Yeah... tell that to some of my coworkers from over in the projects. The attitude has me wondering if he's one of those who runs lights because 'cyclists' should be 'allowed' to break the rules, or curses pedestrians in crosswalks. Maybe like the one that hit my old neighbor lady pulling her grocery cart home?

    But, applause to 'Smallfront' who likes longjohns. Easy to understand. He's in Copenhagen where they invented them. I could be persuaded to have one if I lived there, where all the roads seem paved and flat. Yeah... live on an old zeeschouw in Svanemolle harbour maybe, and work the Nordhavnen docks. A little far from the ARKEN museum for an afternoon pedal but still... Only got ashore there once, being so lazy working double shift unloading cargo thru the night. No, I think I'd still chop up two bikes and make a long tail in case I got the urge to pedal over to Roskilde to see the Longships.

    Guess I am rich though. I can afford to fix the neighbor's bikes for free, and help that homeless vet with his, though he won't accept it unless I can find something for him to do in return. No work, not pay seems kinda strange, him being a lazy American, and so rich he can afford black duct tape on his seat instead of silver.

    Yeah, I am fortunate to live in suburban America where I work 10-11 hrs a day so I can be lazy and rich enough to buy my clothes at good will and my bikes off craigslist. Grateful that no one's shot at me lately, and the power stayed on all day today.

    Happy holidays, whatever your persuasion.

  10. #10
    Senior Member SmallFront's Avatar
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    Actually, with gears I can do most hills. The only thing stopping me is that I can only go so slow on such a long bike. Specifically, I live north of copenhagen (Holte) where we have a lot forest and plenty of hills, albeit not ones that goes for miles. And you don't actually think that having the weight on the rear like an xtracycle makes any difference whatsoever over hills, do you? In fact, I'd say that at best, an Xtracycle will be more difficult to control if steep enough, and the higher centre of gravity will make it more difficult to stand up those hills you think we're missing. The Long John is good for those reasons, and not because it was invented here. I don't much like the Copenhagen Wheel, just because it was named after the city I lived in for many years.


    You should come visit the area I live in. There are plenty of unpaved roads if you so wish to take an xtracycle there. But I guess from unloading at a dock you know all there is to know about the good and bad things about long johns and the bicycling in the area.

    Edit:
    Quote Originally Posted by rdlange View Post
    But, applause to 'Smallfront' who likes longjohns. Easy to understand. He's in Copenhagen where they invented them. I could be persuaded to have one if I lived there, where all the roads seem paved and flat. Yeah... live on an old zeeschouw in Svanemolle harbour maybe, and work the Nordhavnen docks. A little far from the ARKEN museum for an afternoon pedal but still... Only got ashore there once, being so lazy working double shift unloading cargo thru the night. No, I think I'd still chop up two bikes and make a long tail in case I got the urge to pedal over to Roskilde to see the Longships.
    I guess all that shows is that you are able to Google, since you only got ashore once by your own admission. In other words: Name dropping cultural places you Googled doesn't mean you know much about a particular bike, nor the bicycling the area offers.
    Last edited by SmallFront; 12-25-13 at 11:39 PM.

  11. #11
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    FWIW Jan at CAT started making his own Long Johns in the 80's.. the long haul.

    in 90 we built my Touring bike using some of the frame components from his cargo bikes.
    and some from the Burly Tandem shop.

  12. #12
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    My home built extrabike has been serving me well for more than 5 years... it would carry a 14 by 24 box like it was nothing and it's balance and handling are exceptional.

    This is it's 6th winter.


  13. #13
    Senior Member SmallFront's Avatar
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    I'm not saying an Xtracycle isn't a good bike, but it's rather ignorant to proclaim that a (modern) long john is only good for flat areas. My long john (a Bullitt) is geared, pretty stiff, has an aggressive position if you want, and - compared to a "normal" bicycle, has a very low center of gravity (especially when both are loaded with the same weight/box/bags)- which the Xtracycle is just a longer version of. If I need to stand, I'd rather have the CoG low and tied down, than up over a big wheel or in huge bags on the top side of the rear wheel. That is just basic physics. Of course, the advantage of that diminishes the more of a spinner you are.

    I know you weren't making that claim, SF, so it was more to rdlange - apart from the first half sentence.

    Edit: Btw, I notice that Xtracycle now offer a version with a 20" rear wheel to get the CoG down low. It's lower, but still not as low if the rack/cargo platform was in between the wheels. So even they recognise that it is better for handling and balance to have the weight down low.
    Last edited by SmallFront; 12-26-13 at 01:18 AM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member jawnn's Avatar
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    This is the main thing that bugs me:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2THe...KdtwJRmjDzb3dh

    I cannot take the time to reply to antagonistic posts, I just do not live on the internet, and get only a few minutes a week.
    https://www.facebook.com/utilitybikeproject

  15. #15
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    made out of scrap bikes. i never tried that particular sized box, but i believe it could do it.



    one i keep meaning to finish. i believe it could do it too.

  16. #16
    Senior Member jawnn's Avatar
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    I like that long tail bike... build more!
    Last edited by jawnn; 12-27-13 at 11:38 AM.
    https://www.facebook.com/utilitybikeproject

  17. #17
    Senior Member jawnn's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Lectures on the crisis of reality.

    https://www.facebook.com/utilitybikeproject

  18. #18
    Senior Member SmallFront's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jawnn View Post
    Am I the only who thinks that if you can't be bothered to do more than posting a couple of links to videos, rather than actually write, then why should we be bothered watching those videos?

    Or, let me put it this way: Since you "don't live on the internet" and therefore can't find the time to write a response, why should we find the time to watch your videos?

    Also, since you use the excuse that you "don't live on the internet" to refrain from responding to people, and instead opt to link to various videos as a proxy for your opinion, I wonder why you aren't just posting on youtube - either as video responses, or in their comment sections?

  19. #19
    Has opinion, will express
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    My home built extrabike has been serving me well for more than 5 years... it would carry a 14 by 24 box like it was nothing and it's balance and handling are exceptional.

    This is it's 6th winter.

    I do say that I have admired your bike from afar for the time it has been "alive". There is something about the dimensions and the way the bags have been set up that are really, really appealing. And it seems to be the complete "semi" rig with the trailer on the back.

    I have several MTB frames with similar frame configurations in storage in another state at present, and am currently looking for suitable donor bikes for the rear section for when the bikes arrive at our new place. We could end up with several of these types of bikes because I am looking to build one for me and Machka dedicated to riding along the long beaches we have here, and I figure the longer wheelbase will even out the weight between the tyres and prevent too much digging in.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  20. #20
    Senior Member tpolley's Avatar
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    what do you guys look for in a bike that you're going to modify into a cargo bike? do you look for steel bikes? I can weld steel, I haven't learned how to weld aluminum yet.

  21. #21
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    I do say that I have admired your bike from afar for the time it has been "alive". There is something about the dimensions and the way the bags have been set up that are really, really appealing. And it seems to be the complete "semi" rig with the trailer on the back.

    I have several MTB frames with similar frame configurations in storage in another state at present, and am currently looking for suitable donor bikes for the rear section for when the bikes arrive at our new place. We could end up with several of these types of bikes because I am looking to build one for me and Machka dedicated to riding along the long beaches we have here, and I figure the longer wheelbase will even out the weight between the tyres and prevent too much digging in.
    Thanks !

    Stretch has never gone beachcombing and think the only thing for that is a fat tyred bike or trike although the long wheelbase and centred weight distribution would probably get in a little farther before I got stuck.

    The bike does handle snow like a boss... having less weight over the back wheel makes it easier to keep spinning and digging when the going gets tough and the acceleration on the flats is much better than one would think.

    It tows very well as the long wheelbase keeps it from wagging it's tail and any motion from the rear is also damped by that 64 inch wheelbase which adds to it's stability when the rods get ugly.

    I have pondered building a long wheelbase fatbike...

  22. #22
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    And put a Snowboard on the back ..

  23. #23
    Senior Member long john's Avatar
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    I want to start a movement. So just start i did you just start building. Bikes of all kinds can be used!
    Find a nonprofit and get help and make it a share program. My program has been in use four years now. Fixing and building keeps me busy during my lunch break.

  24. #24
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    I could be mistaken but this seems more like a P&R thread hidden under the guise of long johns...

    but SmallFront I am curious as to how a modern one overcomes the front heavy limitations of most bicycles and could be considered viable for non flat and imperfect pavement if even pavement for the road surface?(And yes I read your low center of gravity schtick)
    “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


    ― Ralph Waldo Emerson, Emerson in His Journals

  25. #25
    Senior Member SmallFront's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    I could be mistaken but this seems more like a P&R thread hidden under the guise of long johns...

    but SmallFront I am curious as to how a modern one overcomes the front heavy limitations of most bicycles and could be considered viable for non flat and imperfect pavement if even pavement for the road surface?(And yes I read your low center of gravity schtick)
    It is not a "schtick". It is physics and therefore reality.

    Instead of having things above and around the rear wheel, the lower center of gravity and the fact that the weight is placed in-between the wheels and not above, on-the-side, and to the rear of the rear wheel will help - especially if you have to stand up and dance.

    Is it front heavy? Not really, as the weight is in between the wheels. I'd say that having weight around the rear axle, and on top of the rear wheel will make it very light on the front, and depending on the grade, it will allow you to stand up and pummel the pedals to a higher degree than something where the weight is not only above the rear axle, but also both in front and at the back of the rear axle.

    You mention the "front heavy limitations of most bicycles"? What do you actually mean? How is having weight on the front a bad thing? Are we to have more weight behind the rear axle to make it so light at the front that it will wheely if we are not weighing it down? A unicycle with a front wheel five inches ahead of the rear wheel, and for looks only?

    Hell, it even falls slowly when on a leaf-littered trail with road tyres due to its length, and I take the bike into forests at least twice a week with no problems, other than the semi-slick tyres not being the best for this (I have Schwalbe Marathon Supremes on it).

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