OK, If I Really Wanted To Do This.......


New Member
Local time
4:43 AM
Jul 24, 2008
.......What would be a good bike to base a build on?

I'm kind of getting a hankering to build a motorized bike, and have in mind using a comfort-cruiser-type bike with a motor mounted in the center of the frame, with chain drive to the left side of the rear wheel. To stay within the legal limits of a "motorized bike" I need to keep the engine under 50cc. I'm thinking along the lines of a 2-stroke "Happy Time" type motor.

I like the old board-track motorcycle style. My goal would be to end up with something similar to this:


Here's my questions:

1. Single speed with coaster brake?
2. Would a derailleur-type rear hub for the pedaling work OK, with rim brakes front and rear?
3. Would an internally-geared hub with coaster brake work best, with an added front rim brake?

Being the cheap b@$t@rd that I am, I can get a brand-new Schwinn single-speed with coaster brake comfort bike, or even a 7-speed rear derailleur bike with front and rear rim brakes for free (+ tax and shipping, of course) through a credit-card reward points system:


Schwinn also makes a bike with a 3-speed internally-geared coaster-brake type hub, but it's a little pricey, at about $320 MSRP, and I'd have to pay real money for that one!


All of the above candidate bikes have alloy rims. The 7-speed jobbie has an alloy frame (which is also off-putting).

I'm thinking a multi-speed bike would be best, because it's fairly hilly where I live, and it might be necessary to assist the motor by pedaling up hills.

I kind of like a coaster brake, with a rim brake on the front actuated by a brake lever on the right handlebar. Clutch , of course, would be on the left bar, motorcycle style. If I end up with rim brakes front and rear, I would have to use one of those parallel-brake levers (and I hear that they can be problematical).

The single-speed coaster-brake bike I'm looking at does not come with a front rim brake, and so I would have to add one.

Whichever way I go, I also would like to add one of those chrome retro-springer forks. Does that fork have provisions for a rim brake?

Will the alloy rims hold up?

Any other pointers anyone can think of?
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