Grannys Nightmare - Page 1 of 7


Figure 1

You know what really irritates the heck out of me? I drive all the way out to the dump, pay my five bucks to get in, and the only bikes laying around are those goofy granny bikes from the late 1970s. Dog, what's the deal? I need some new parts! OK, enough whining, it's payback time. A real chopper artist can chop any bike, even this crusty old codger cruiser. In fact, the more I looked at the bike, the more I thought it would be a sweet ride. Check out all that chrome, look at that long spindly frame, yeah, I could make this happen.

Normally, I do not even bother with these frames because of their "lugged" construction. Lugged frames are not really welded at the head tube and bottom bracket, they are press fit and brazed. Because of this, you cannot really salvage the head tube or the bottom bracket, and this makes the frame useless for parts normally. Even the rims are those goofy 27inch size, too big for a mountain bike tire. Because I was planning to hack this granny cruiser into something evil, I would be keeping most of the frame in one piece, so the project was still doable.

We found this classic bike at the dump and turned it into a cool contemporary chopper. "Turn down that devil music, you crazy kids!" I could hear the bike talking to me. I thought I'd better rip it all apart before I start wearing a helmet and worrying about brakes! This photo shows the old fashioned bike before hacking. These styles were easy to find at the dump or at yard sales.

Figure 2

Here is the donor bike, taken apart for chopping. Even though this bike is older than time itself, it came apart very easily, and the chrome parts have only slight surface rust - easy to clean with steel wool. I will be using the entire original bike, as the theme for this chop will be Granny's Nightmare!

Figure 3

This chopper will have long forks and a slightly modified frame when completed. I did not want to change the bike so much that it loses its entire original look - the idea is to make it radical yet show its roots. This photo shows the original forks with both legs amputated right at the crown. It should be easy to build a triple tree from these forks as they are made from heavy mild steel. Back in those days, they knew how to build a bike, not like these young "whipper-snappers" today, sonny.

Figure 4

I used the original fork dropouts, so they were cut leaving enough meat to weld to the new fork legs. Save the original fork legs, though. With those nice curves, it should be easy to integrate them back into the frame for a unique and classy look. Both dropouts should be cut as close to the same length as possible in order to insure wheel alignment.

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