Seat tube Head tube
New chain wheel
Tires ( 2)
Matching nuts and bolts ( 2)
GRANNY STYLE: The more
I looked at this bike, the
more I thought it could
make a sweet ride. Check
out all that chrome, and
that long, spindly frame.
Donor bike This one is a ladies’
single-speed, Canada Cycle and
Motor Co., circa 1970s.
1"-diameter thin steel conduit ( 8')
cut into 2 equal lengths
Basic AC welder with 6013 rod
Small pieces of scrap metal
Angle grinder with cut-off disc
First take your donor bike completely apart. Even
though my donor was older than time itself, it came
apart easily. The chrome parts had only slight surface
rust, which I cleaned with steel wool.
I didn’t want to change the bike so much that it
lost all of its original look — the idea was to make
it radical, yet show its roots. The main modification
was turning the original fork into a long, chopper-style “triple tree” tubular fork. Since this was the
focus of the conversion, I worked on the fork first
and then made frame adjustments to match.
Fortunately, bikes from the good old days were
made out of heavy, mild steel and were built to last,
which makes them easier to weld to than the
whippersnappers manufactured today from very
thin steel or aluminum.
Using an angle grinder with a cut-off disc,
amputate both legs off the original fork, right at
the crown (Figure A, following page). Then cut off
the dropouts, keeping them even to ensure wheel
alignment, and leave some extra tube above to weld
them to the new fork legs. I saved the original fork
legs; with those nice curves, I knew they would add
some class to the frame later.
For the new fork, start with two 4'-long, 1"-diameter,
thin-walled, steel conduit tubes. The tubes must
be exactly the same length, and 4' is plenty. Much
longer, and the frame would need radical manipulation in order to prevent the “instant wheelie” effect
while riding over bumps.
I used the original fork crown as the base of the
triple tree and welded the 2 pipes onto either side.
To make a strong weld, grind semi-circular indentations into the crown where the tubes will fit in
Once both sides of the crown are ground out,
lay the unit on a flat surface and tack-weld the new
legs into place so that you can realign them later