i like the look the reversed fork tube,incase anyone missed itAny old bike that is saved from scrap that isn't anywhere near original but can be fixed up to ride is fine. I don't ever endorse cutting up a good original, but many classic bare frames can easily be made into a decent rat. Most of the old stuff I got is free, so it's pretty bad off, seldomly with original paint worth saving. My 53 Schwinn, the bike I first ratted out in 1978 was so badly pitted from rust on the chain stay that I filled it in with bondo, still has many miles in it, but not as a restored Meteor. Not worth a complete restoration, but still beats anything made in China. It's had different versions over the years and the frame waits in a shed for another rebuild back in Florida.
To drive my point home a little better when it comes to ridiculous things some people do with rat rods, I'll expound a little on the "pipe wrench" thought. "Hey, I found this rusty 18 inch pipe wrench laying in the road. I'm gonna weld it somewhere on the bumper of my rad rod. It won't serve any purpose or look good, but they ARE both rusty. I'll probably put it next to that worn out lawn mower blade I welded on there yesterday".My thoughts on the "broad" rat movement is - Most of the rat bicycles I've seen are pretty cool. I'm not a fan of destroying or changing a nice original bicycle/motorcycle/car/truck just for the sake of making it look rusty and weather beaten. I think bicycles escape some of the negative accessorizing because they are human powered. Rat fans will attach all sorts of unnecessary crap to motorized vehicles because they're not concerned with extra weight. "Hey, I found this rusty 18 inch pipe wrench laying in the road. I'm gonna weld it somewhere on the bumper of my rad rod. It won't serve any purpose or look good, but they ARE both rusty." Some artistically inclined builders can get away with it and it be tasteful. 90% of the rest of us cannot. From what I've seen, I have liked about 85% of the rat bicycles, probably 50% of the ratrod cars/trucks and about 20% or less of rat bike motorcycles. Now, I'd much rather see an old bicycle frame put together with mismatched parts and someone enjoy it, than to see it forgotten in the corner of a storage building forever. If the old bicycle is mostly complete, it would be nice to see it put back original. A lot of times finances (and patience) prevents original restoration. To me, rats should be built for practical reasons or as a step toward original restoration OR a restomod, depending on your preference. BTW If what I've said doesn't come across clearly, just know it made perfect sense in my brain as I was typing! LOL