The Mission

The goal is not to replicate a perfect BTR that is a side-by-side knockoff of any particular model. That was done to perfection by Paul Brodie here: http://flashbackfab.com/pages/excel00.html His fabrication of the Excelsior BTR is second to none. Nor is my goal to functionally duplicate the tried and true Whizzer or any number of motorbikes created during and after WWII - they have their own following. Whizzers were even produced under license again in 1999 or so. My goal is for a bike much more realistic for a BTR - a "scooter" of sorts, that can funcion as a bicycle, albeit a very heavy one, and as a motorbike. These terms, "scooter" and "motorbike", are common in the motorbike conversion crowd where the goal is to meet state regulations that would allow inexpensive and non-restrictive registration of these things as "powered bicycles" - essentially plated as mopeds. Among most state's regulations are one, that the vehicle must be operable as a bicycle and two, that the engine must not exceed 3HP. I'm sure this would be much easier with a standard cruiser frame and perhaps this is why it has been seen so much. Technically, I should be able to qualify within these guidelines(with no HP numbers on the motor) but I imagine I will meet neither goal entirely. I do plan to keep the cranks and drivetrain of the bicycle - it works and it just looks right. Just like the cafe racers we like, by the time you make it look right, the state thinks it no longer "looks" street legal. One of my favorite BTRs is the 1914 Cyclone. There are only about 10 Cyclones in existence of which 3 or 4 are are street versions. Apparently, the street versions are so rare, one owner actually converted a known BTR into a street version! I have seen many BTR replicas but honestly most just fall short IMO. There are a few that look really nice but they are few and far between. Here is a nice one from a member of usa2strokers.com in Mexico: Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting He used a prefab frame and used a Whizzer 150cc motor. IMO, most others I see are just out of proportion or attempt to stay with a true cruiser bicycle frame with too short of a wheelbase. It's a pain to fab a frame but I think it's necessary to get the correct look. Depending on my satisfaction with this first attempt, I might add a front drum brake - perhaps with an internal dynamo for added lighting - and then experiment with vintage types of suspension. I like the Crossbow "Monark" fork http://www.crossbowcycles.com/forks.html but, just like the early HD springers, J and JD, I think the forks appear to bend back. I'm guessing this was to lessen trail with the rockers involved but who knows. Next, I'll show you what I have so far.


Andy said...

Hey there...I found your website, not sure if you are still monitoring it or not. Anyhow, I am very interested in your build and would like to know where it stands now?

Also, you mention the person from usa2strokers.com used a prefab frame and a whizzer motor. I have a motor, but am looking for a frame to put it in. Do you know where he may have bought it from?

Thank you!

dmar836 said...

I think the frame he used was a custom one from Firebikes.

Anonymous said...

yes it is a www.firebikes.com frame