Highlander Chopper - Page 1 of 7


Figure 1

As shown here, there are five basic measurements. Measurement 'A' will always be the same, and 'B', 'C', and 'D' are a product of 'A' and 'E'. Confused? Sounds like we are going to build a space shuttle for NASA here, doesn't it? Well, have no fear; this is a lot simpler than it sounds.

Basically, length 'A' is the same because it puts the rider a certain distance from the handlebars. If you are 6 feet tall or 4 feet tall, this length will be just fine, since the handlebars are easily adjusted forward or backwards. It has also been calculated so the frame can take a 26-inch rear wheel with a fat tire.

Measurement 'E' is, of course, fork length (the very essence of a chopper). This is something you will decide on, although I will make a few suggestions for practical riding purposes.

Ok, now that we know the length of 'A' (always the same), and the length of 'E', (the forks), we can than calculate 'B', 'C', and 'D' so that the rider can reach the pedals and the pedals do not scrape on the ground. That's all there is to it.

Figure 2

As always, before you start, it's a good idea to source out all the raw materials for the project. Since the biggest part of building this chopper is your own hard work, the list of materials and cost is very small, and most of the parts like those shown in this photo can be salvaged from scrap bikes. Here's what you need:

About 20 feet of one-inch, thin- walled steel electrical conduit (also called EMT).

Two sets of forks from a 26-inch mountain bike (these do not have to be exactly the same, just as long as they are for a 26-inch wheel).

One head tube and fork set salvaged from another bike frame (any size fork will do as long as the head tube and forks fit together).

One bottom bracket and crank set salvaged from another bike frame.

One gooseneck and set of ape hanger handlebars.

A sheet of 24-gauge or similar thickness steel for the fender (about 4 feet square).

Two nuts and bolts for the forks (nuts need to be about 1-inch in diameter to fit inside the electrical conduit as you will soon see).

One big seat with springs (these can be found on many exercise bikes).

One 26-inch rear wheel with coaster brake and one 20-inch front wheel.

A few chains of equal size to join together (these must fit on your crank set).

Once you understand how all the parts go together feel free to modify the design to suit your needs or style. You may want a 24-inch front wheel, or 20-inch on the front and rear, or even 36 speeds with front and rear shifters and disc brakes.

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You can build it yourself from our easy to follow DIY plans!