Well, this was a complete surprise to me, but it looks like I'm going to enter my first Muscle Bike Build Off this year too! I just got this 1979 Schwinn Fair Lady and the 2 mountain/road/track/idk bikes sitting behind it for FREE off of Facebook Marketplace earlier this afternoon! I can't say I really needed another bike to work on, but it's hard to turn down anything free.
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I got the idea of using most of the parts from The Trashliner Trike I bought earlier this month to put this bike together, but I'm still not sure if I'm going to use the trike rear for this build. I'll know more once I get the trike patched up tomorrow. What I do know is that I want to use the springer fork, ape hangers, and maybe the pedals.
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Here are some quick sketches I drew to get some idea of what direction I want to go with this bike. The 3 at the top were with the trike rear, but I just wasn't feeling it. I drew the middle and bottom sketches as if I was keeping this a 2-wheeler. I took some inspiration from @The Renaissance Man's Drag King bike, specifically the extended dropouts and the tank, and came up with an idea to stick a 26" balloon tire in the back, add a custom wood tank, and stick the springer fork and ape hangers from Trashliner up front. I think I might stick with this look, but I'm still open to seeing how this thing would look as a trike first.
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Okay, not much happened today, but I'm excited for what did happen.

First, I got The Trashliner Trike back from the weld shop this morning and took it for a short spin around the neighborhood. Now that the wheels don't rub, I can really enjoy the 1st gen Chevy Corvair lean! I want to get some footage of this trike in action before I part it out so you all can get an idea of just how wild this thing really is.

Next, I got a better idea of where I want to take this build, and how to make use of the trike axle from Trashliner. Since the trike I'm parting out to build this one is technically my first green bike/trike, and a "metallic" green at that, I think it's only fitting to make this trike metallic green as well. My dad told me about this special green powder he has for his powder coating job, and how it's basically Candy Apple Green. Candy Apple, for a Fair Lady? Hmm... Why did that sound funny to me? Oh yeah!



So, I hereby name this trike-in-progress: Poison Apple!

I want to take "the fairest bike of all" and transform it into "the baddest trike of all!"
(Although @Psychographic's Cyrus the Virus probably deserves that title, based on the trikes I've seen so far...)

As for the modifications, the trike axle doesn't need any changes, just the bolt-on basket frame/outer drop outs. If I can find someone to fabricate a new basket frame/outer drop out, I can stick some 26" fat bike tires on the rear, and make this trike look extra cartoony! I just need to reach out to some potential contacts, and I need to see if I can find a front/rear pair of 26" fat bike tires/wheels with a coaster brake (preferably cheap, but I've seen what these go for...) I'd also like to place some fenders over the basket frame to flesh out the trike a little more, and make the outer drop outs look more like fender braces. One last thing I'd like to do, though I don't know if it'll happen, is to lower the seat pole and seat stays to about the top of the top bar so I could possibly sit between the rear wheels. I'll try coming up with some concept sketches tomorrow, and I'll hopefully begin mocking up parts by this weekend.

Oh, and I also measured the width of my trike rear end and the dropouts of my Fair Lady. Everything should fit!
 
Ok, yesterday and today saw a good deal of progress! I'm now in the "stacking parts" stage of my build, which is easily one of my favorite parts! I took The Trashliner Trike apart yesterday to make use of the handlebars, springer fork and trike rear. While most everything came apart easily, I had to let a bolt on the trike axle soak in some PB Blaster overnight. I need to do some more work to TTT's handlebars to clean them up, so I just stuck an identical (and cleaner) set of ape hangers on the Fair Lady for now. I got to say, just adding a springer fork and a set of Sting-Ray handlebars to an otherwise mellow girl's bike makes a world of difference! Even if I don't stick with the trike axle, this Fair Lady still has a world of potential!

As an added bonus, One of my neighbors (who builds sprint cars, or midget sprint cars; I don't know the difference) told me he might be on board for helping me put this trike together!
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...And then he came down with something today before he could look at the project to be. Praying he didn't catch covid-19, and that he gets well soon.

I went ahead and mocked up the trike rear end earlier today. Fortunately, it fits the frame with no issues! In fact, I could even use the stock mounting holes on the brace and just make a custom bracket to hold everything in place... but that's not the path I'm taking, at least not right now. As mentioned before, I want to put some fat bike tires in the rear, lower the seat tube, seat stays and trike frame/brace (seriously, what do you call that hunk of 1/2" steel tubing?) to allow me to sit over the rear axle and ride this like a recumbent bike, and maybe even add a custom tank and bodywork. The only things stopping that from happening are finding someone with metal fab skills who can bring my crazy ideas to life... and my slow and unsteady source of income. But for now... this ain't half bad.
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Small problem I detected yesterday: The chain kept skipping and popping off the sprockets while I was riding The Trashliner Trike before I parted it out. This is why: The shroud that covers the rear sprocket and axle is bent inward, forcing the chain off the rear sprocket. It should be fairly easy to fix for the right guy, but I'm not that guy. Luckily, I know people who could fix it, when their schedule frees up.
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Because I just can't seem to stop imagining how to make this trike really stand out, I had the idea to place an old steel drum between the rear wheels. I've been thinking of adding some bodywork to the rear of the trike, both to function as part of the seat, and for style. This drum has almost the same diameter as the 24" tires that are currently on the trike, and I like the idea of having something between the seat and the wheels. I don't know if this idea will stick, but it's something I want to explore. I'm just not sure it says "muscle trike" as much as it says "32 Ford trunk on a Schwinn." What do you guys think?
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Captain Awesome

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Not sure the drum screams muscle to me. I do however love the idea of laying that seating position in the weeds and tucking between the rear wheels! :thumbsup:

Everything looks like it's laying out really well proportionally
 
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Not sure the drum screams muscle to me. I do however love the idea of laying that seating position in the weeds and tucking between the rear wheels! :thumbsup:

Everything looks like it's laying out really well proportionally
Yeah, putting a cylinder between the wheels is definitely an idea I want to explore, but it might not be the right shape for this build. The seating position, however, is one I want to stick with. I even sat down on the axle frame to see if I could pedal and steer comfortably from there, and it turns out I can, if I cut the brace off.
 
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That looks like a great start. I’ve wanted to do one with a wheelbarrow out back or as built as the seat like a T bucket. Rear seat would be a hoot too!
I have thought about using part of a wheelbarrow as part of the seat, but I'm not sure my back would want to lean back that far. When you're talking about a T Bucket seat, are you talking about the C cab style body, or the roadster style where the back of the cab ends at the top of the seat? I've seen similar C cab bodies on trikes before, but I'm going for more of a roadster feel. You did just give me an idea, though!
 
Thought I'd copy/paste some of the inspiration and ideas I have in mind for my trike build from the inspiration pics thread.

First off, pretend that it's not made out of golf clubs, kitchen utensils, baseballs, pool tubes, a lawn chair, and a toaster, and just focus on the shape, the silhouette. This is kind of the flavor I want to shoot for: Short frame, big fat tires in the rear, small skinny tire up front, long fork, ape hangers, seat between the wheels, and maybe even a tank.

Next, these 2 trikes that Ian Roussel from Full Custom Garage built serve as a major inspiration for both my Poison Apple trike build, and another Spaceliner/Flightliner bike I also want to turn into a trike. Actually, a lot of Ian Roussel's builds serve as inspiration for my custom bike projects, especially with how he's always looking for "shapes" and how he likes to utilize scrap pieces and whatever else he has laying around.

This first trike is where I got the idea for the seating position, the BIG tires in the rear, the extended fork, and even that rear bodywork idea I have in mind with that metal drum I mocked up yesterday.

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This other trike is more of an inspiration for the Spaceliner trike I want to build, but it's still a solid reference point for the trike I'm currently working on.
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And most recently, I just came across this trike while looking for more ideas, and I might have just found a solution for making some rear bodywork that still looks muscular! This guy used a combo of '36 Olds and '39 Chevy fenders, but I think I could do something similar with either some leftover '40 Ford fenders from one of my dad's projects, or maybe a pair of VW Beetle fenders, if one of my contacts has a pair I can buy. My main concern is having room to pedal, and that means the fenders can't stick out too far and inward. Plus, my trike's more short and stubby than it is long and low. I want it to look proportionally correct.
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Sep 2, 2020
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I have thought about using part of a wheelbarrow as part of the seat, but I'm not sure my back would want to lean back that far. When you're talking about a T Bucket seat, are you talking about the C cab style body, or the roadster style where the back of the cab ends at the top of the seat? I've seen similar C cab bodies on trikes before, but I'm going for more of a roadster feel. You did just give me an idea, though!
I have long been obsessing over the idea of the Big Daddy Roth Outlaw but as a bike or quad or a long phaeton style. A wheelbarrow that is like truck bed which dumps is something I’ve also been thinking about for some time. My best friend‘s dad had a Super Cycle trike in the 90’s similar to that VW trike...both are derived from Ed Roth designs. :rockout:
 
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Well, yet another cheap fat tire cruiser bike I was looking at for the rear wheels and tires sold, and this one really irritated me. Long story short, the guy just sold the bike because he said, and I quote,"Someone else wanted it, and you were not sure that you did." I was interested, I just wanted to know what wheel/tire size the bike had, since he didn't include that in his ad, and I wanted to know the rear sprocket size because I wanted to make sure the sprocket was small enough to sit next to the axle sprocket on my trike rear end! If those 2 things checked out, I would have gladly purchased his bike!

*sigh....* Some sellers...

So now, all I can do is wait for this one last person on FB Marketplace to get back to me about their ad for bike wheels and tires. If that one turns out to be a dead end too, I don't know what I'm going to do about this trike. Sure, I could just stack the parts I've got, hit everything with a new coat of paint and call it good enough, but "good enough" sometimes just isn't good enough.

Between the missed opportunity with that last sale, my neighbor who could help me with the metal fab getting sick, and an honest lack of funds to really build this trike the way I want, I don't know if now's the best time for me to participate in this year's Muscle Bike Build Off.
 
Jul 16, 2019
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I think the covid boom made shenanigans like that more common, if you ask for details, it's too much trouble, someone else will be along shortly who isn't concerned about little details like the wheel size. I missed out on a grail bike (Humu...sigh) because I wanted to know the frame size. Madness, but you gotta be ready to pull the trigger immediately!
 
I think the covid boom made shenanigans like that more common, if you ask for details, it's too much trouble, someone else will be along shortly who isn't concerned about little details like the wheel size. I missed out on a grail bike (Humu...sigh) because I wanted to know the frame size. Madness, but you gotta be ready to pull the trigger immediately!
Yeah, that sounds about right.
 
Okay, I still don't know if I'll be making any progress on Poison Apple anytime soon, but here are some ideas I had for how this trike might look with some body mods.

The first sketch on the top left was loosely inspired by a comment @Dominicus posted earlier, with a wheel barrow T Bucket body, but the rest are based more on that one trike I posted a picture of earlier. My main concern is keeping the rear of this trike from just looking like a car trunk stuck on a bike... something these sketches veer a little too close to for my liking.
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