Retro Rocket


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Duchess

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Feb 14, 2014
510
897
Beverly, MA
#1
I built this from my late mother's bike. It started as a joke drawing based on a discussion about "sex-changing" girls bikes to boys to make them more valuable and I thought, while we were being tongue-in-cheek insecure, why not a very phallic "sex change". When my mother passed, we were left with her sad bike and I decided to build the goofy rocket bike because she had a great sense of humor, loved my projects, and would have probably found it funny and, I thought, it will be so quick and easy to do (famous last words). There is way more engineering in this stupid thing than the goofy parade-bike looks suggest, but it is functional (not the rocket, but as a good, rideable bike if one can get past the spectacle or isn't too tall for it, like I am). If I replace the corrugated HDPE drain pipe body with fiberglass, I'll change a few measurements (the forward access door is too close to the shifters, which I'd also move back a little farther). Each shifter has a switch on top that activates either the headlight or tail light. Surprisingly, too, with the convoluted cable routing, it shifts pretty well. The headlight is an old Mazda 3 with a 30W H7 LED bulb. It is bright.

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Brake routing—front down the fork, rear into the rocket body.
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The wires for the switches go through these extension springs.
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Front brake routing. small metal bracket off an old handlebar headlight mount on the fork and a flexible noodle. Brake works well!
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Forward access hatch, wiring in plastic harness, brake housing in aluminum tube, batteries under the seat with charging ports shown.
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Last edited:

Kstone

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Jan 6, 2017
525
3,822
26
Pittsburgh
katiestoneceramics.weebly.com
#2
Love it. Always loved it since I first saw it. I'm sure she's giving you a thumbs up. It's humorous and classy. I'd feel like a million bucks going on a spin on that baby. Way to go.
 

1966fastbacks

Finally riding a big boys bike
May 17, 2015
242
212
TUCSON AZ
#5
Normally i would say you are nuts. But that is way too cool. I would ride it everywhere. I am from AZ and want to know what the white stuff is out the window. Cozy.
 

Duchess

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Feb 14, 2014
510
897
Beverly, MA
#6
It wouldn't be the first time I was identified as being nuts, but thanks! I'm surprised at how smooth and quiet it rides and with the bright lights and decent storage for drinks or food, it's not a bad little cruiser. I took it out for a couple miles before it was completed and some dude-bro seemed threatened, which I see as a nice bonus to a (at the time, almost) finished project. At full seat extension, it's still way too small for me, though, so my knees don't like it, but the idea was that it could be a loaner for smaller friends, anyway.
 

Goldenrod

Finally riding a big boys bike
Mar 14, 2016
258
361
73
Schaumburg
#7
You could make the next one a bomb, wear a cowboy hat and watch Dr. Strangelove. Then you could yell like Slim Pickens.
 
Likes: stezell

Duchess

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Feb 14, 2014
510
897
Beverly, MA
#8
The diameter:length proportions would be way off for a nuclear bomb and my mother hated war (even if Dr. Strangelove was an anti-war movie), so I went with a rocket (though, I guess it looks just as much like a missile). The missile HAD to be hot pink, so the other colors were chosen to go with it from a '50s color pallet since she was born then and I went with a Warner Brothers kind of thing because it reminds me of some ridiculous Coyote contraption to catch the Road Runner. Here's the most recent picture where I added the lettering:

upload_2017-3-25_9-31-40.png
 

Shawn Michael

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Oct 3, 2012
517
442
Keizer, OR
#9
You did a great job on that bike. I loved building rockets as a kid. It is a nice repurposed project, I'm sure it will get more love now. -Shawn
 

mike j

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Jun 3, 2013
2,945
5,463
Tuxedo Park, United States
#13
Thanks! It's going to be fun to see peoples' faces riding this thing.
If you got a fake beard, a skull cap & put on a white bathrobe, then took it for a spin down by the airport....
 

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