Fun Bikes that you can make yourself!
Converted Bike to Compact Bike
Frame Materials: 23" frame steel 10 speed road bike
Weight as pictured: 27 lbs
What was I thinking?:
How to make a regular bike into a compact bike with a small front wheel. The purpose is a simple alternative to complex folding bikes. The design reminds me of the American Eagle reverse penny Farthing bikes of the late 1800s.
How Does it ride?:
It is stable and well behaved from 2-20 mph. It has less than 1" of trail. It has lots of tiller (12 inches) and narrow bars. I think that makes it hard to ride standing up. A normal bike has 3-5 inches of forward tiller. The yellow bike has way too much tiller and feels funny to steer.
What Changed before the photos?:
I first built it with a straight seat post but I felt too compressed. I changed to the extended seatpost to move the set backward 4".
What may change later on this bike?:
I may rebuild the stem for less tiller and less height. I may reinstall the rear derailleur for 5 speed gearing.
What would I do differently on another attempt?:
I might se a 16 inch front wheel. I might use a 20" back wheel. I might try to build adult ergonomics into a 20" kid bike. (Long cranks, tall post and tall stem)
What lessons were learned?:
It worked well.
Bike design and execution are actually very forgiving if your expectations are low enough. It was an easy conversion. It is easy to transport.
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