This week’s Readers’ Rides comes from Paul de Valera from Atomic Cycles, the organizer of the Coaster Brake Challenge. Paul had an idea for a Cruiser and finally executed it, resulting in a very unique bike. Check out more as Paul walks us through the design and fabrication below.
I have had this idea in my head for a while to make a whole bike made out of square and rectangular tubing. My plan was to make the frame, fork, bars, and seat post in such a fashion. It will be a 26″ bmx cruiser.
When I have an idea, it takes possession of me and the only way to make that feeling go away is to bring it to fruition. Not the wackiest idea I’ve had when it comes to bikes.
The square tube bmx bike just stuck in my brain. I had no choice but to make it happen. I had to figure out how to make a head tube and bottom bracket shell that would be usable. I was able to find tubing that I could sleeve the head tube in and bung weld it so it would be strong and look good for a Bizzaro Wolrd bike.
Now, I’m no master frame builder. I need a lot more time under the ol’ welding hood to get my TIG up to snuff. So far I’ve made about 40 frames or so and I figure they will stop looking like crap when I reach 100, so I have a long way to go for sure! Coming up with projects is a great way for me to get out there and push myself to get better.
Once I tackle the head tube, I had to cut four pieces of plate to make the bb shell so I could sleeve a BMX shell into it. I used my mill to shave all the pieces down. As an aside, getting the mill in my backyard was a beast! I had to employ some serious redneck engineering to get it to pack there. It is a “small” one, oof! So heavy. Anyways, once I got the bb shell figured out I began to get all the tubes in place. I copied a Schwinn “Eletro-Forged” era cruiser for the frame geometry because they ride so nice. As I went on with the build I had to make some tweaks to the design. Took a while to get the seat post in.
Yes, square seat post and seat tube. Head tube square: check. Bottom bracket square: check. The fork made from square tubing too, check. The handlebars were made in a CW style, I welded some ends off some Dysnoid Strawberry Shortcake Hanna Montana cooperate juggernaut matriarchal pink bike of some sort to accommodate the gripage. I sprung for some letters on eVilbay for the downtube logo, got to make it look legit you know?
Everything else was made from stuff I already had laying around so I think if you add the paint cost into the mix I’m into the rig for about 40 dollars. Sounds about right. Rattle can paint job of course and some blue hoops from our Red Menace bike we did a few years back.
The stem is one of our Lord Humungous stems that I did a little ano in a can to make it matchy. Cranks came off a Huffy, the chain was found in a bag of chains in my yard, near new. Some 5 dollar leather saddle for my backside.
Weighs more than a Schwinn Varsity (that is a lot). Rides nice once you get it up to cruising speed. Enjoy!!
We’d like to thank all of you who have submitted Readers Rides builds to be shared over here. The response has been incredible and we have so many to share over the next few months. Feel free to submit your bike, listing details, components, and other information. You can also include a portrait of yourself with your bike and your Instagram account! Please, shoot landscape-orientation photos, not portrait. Thanks!