CHEAP aluminum tubing for bike trailers, etc, etc, etc


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10:52 AM
Dec 1, 2006
I was in a local Salvation Army thrift store, recently, looking at their old bikes for parts. They had a large stack of crutches , [ you know , when you break a leg ] . Anyway, I am thinking about ways to use the aluminum tubing for making bike trailers, pannier racks, etc. The price was good enough! They said I could have them ALL for $0.75/pr. The aluminum scrap in them is about worth that.
Just thought I would throw this idea out for suggestions/comments.
Now if I could think of a way to get a bunch of crutches home without looking like I did a raid on the old folks' home....
I have cut up a crutch and found them to be very thin walled. On the one I cut up, you could bend it with your knee and of course it would cave in and kink. Don't mean to sound negative but don't want anyone to get hurt either.
Yes, they are thin-walled, but that's what keeps them so light.Join 2 cut pieces by slipping in a wooden dowel into each piece & clamp, or scrwe together. Used as side railings, etc., for a trailer, or 2 rails at 90° angles for the bottom, would seem to work fine, as long as the hauling weight was kept down. Still will need stronger materials for framework , though.
Still tinkering !
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Your right about that, they are light. I guess you could alumina tig them. I just wouldn't trust them on anything that holds a person directly, unless their walking on them in a vertical position. I have an aluminum childs trailer and the wall thickness is a lot thicker than the crutch material. Maybe I just have a cheap crutch.
Look around for dead lawn furniture thrown out in the hard rubbish collection. Most of the time the bends in the tubing just seem to be in the right place when it comes to building utility type devices for attaching to bicycles.
I picked a Burley kid trailer up off craig's list a while back. It is built with very thin walled Al tubing, but darned if it doesn't take some abuse. It only weighs about 20#, and a huge share of that is in the wheels.

Good tip on the crutches.
Kevbo, what kind of axle does it have or are there just stubs for the two wheels.
Wheel chairs

Only vaguely related and if this is far off topic, forgive me. Very often there are old wheel chairs on craigs list for free. I just picked one up. It is surgical grade, thick walled stainless steel. After a lil "noxon", elbow grease, disassembly and rope forming a "cargo" style net, it is pretty! I still have not figured out how to marry it to the bike. Am thinking a small universal joint near the tensioner. (so far, it is on it's back. So if you were to sit in it in it's original configuration, you would be looking up at the sky with your feet towards the bike)