Monday, June 11, 2007

Used Bike Store?

Yes, it looks like a used bike store around my house. I'm gathering victims for my first bike project, a recumbent "tadpole" style trike. What does that mean? It means the back half of a normal multi-speed bicycle, with two wheels up front with a laid back seat and the pedals out ahead of the front wheels. Once upon a time when I was a kid I wanted to build a bike. I even got a few frames together and got the parts -- my idea was to flip the frame around, swap the derailer (shifter) around and the wheel so the front wheel was the driving wheel. Then I would sit down low between two front wheels in a rear steer type setup. I experimented by fastening a skateboard to a bike the way I mentioned to see if I could make it work, but I never got past that stage. I never lost the itch for building things though. I got into motorcycles, go-karts, and mopeds eventually and my bicycling days went away. Recently though I decided I could use some exercise and biking has been my idea of a fun and cheap outlet for that. Of course when I was young I didn't have all the tools and neat stuff that I do now, so the idea to build a bike popped back in my head. I'm not going to do much trailblazing in new concepts though, I'm going to build something that is a proven design.

While I was carting away used bike parts, I happened upon a jogger frame. Talk about fantastic luck! The wheels are great for building a tadpole style trike, they have nice big bearings that can easily be replaced. (Normal front bike wheels have a very narrow bearing that doesn't like a lot of side loads.) I was very happy about that find. I started cutting up bike frames yesterday with my handy reciprocating saw. I can't wait to start welding things up for my first crack at a trike!

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