Wyoming Cruiser Bike — Fully Licensed and Not Insured


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | September 1, 2008      

Our latest grocery getter. We had this old 1980s Huffy in use as a super beater that rode more like a broken wheelbarrow than a bicycle. I finally got bothered enough to do a restomod, on the cheap.

Bicycles.
I’ve always wanted to weld on a bicycle. So I stuck this Wyoming plate on the rear basket rack as a fender — no more stripe of wet road grime up the back. And does this make us have the hippest bike on the planet? Carl?

Bicycles.
The backcountry skiing mountain town lifestyle requires a quiver of bicycles. As part of such, the village beater is essential, “beater” being defined as something you spend little to no money on, can be left in the rain, and probably won’t be stolen unless you leave it in front of a salon at closing time.

A neighbor gave us this old Huffy about fifteen years ago. These things are considered something like the Ford Gremlin of the bike world — definitely a beater. They weigh a ton, rattle and bang as you peddle, and just plain look shoddy. But we left it in the yard with no shelter for fifteen years and rode it nearly every day around town. In that whole time I think I put a tire on it, fixed one flat, replaced the seat after the sun rotted the vinyl to oblivion, and probably lubed the chain once or twice. Try that with your Colnago.

Bicycles.
Mr. Huffy started out as a 5 speed. Nothing like a dérailleur to destroy town beater bike cred, so I converted to a one-speed by taking the gear cluster apart, making spacers out of the unused cogs, then shortening the chain. The chain jumped off during our first test ride. Alignment looked good, but something funny was going on. Turned out the rear axle was bent. Probably those neighbor kids trying to jump old Mr. Huff on a plywood ramp they set up in the street back in the day. Salvaged an axle from another old wheel I had laying around, problem solved, now runs smooth as yep, a Colnago.

Bicycles.
This is a small frame — I couldn’t even get the seat high enough for Lisa. Farmer engineering to the rescue. Turns out a chunk of 1/2 inch plumbing pipe press fits almost perfectly inside the stock seatpost (secured with a plug weld as shown in photo), and also fits perfectly in the seat mounting socket. Like I said, time to weld on a bicycle. And talk about beater pride, every time I’m astride this nag I think to myself “I’m riding something made from plumbing pipe!”

Other parts of the resto included the usual repacking and adjusting of all bearings, new tires and tubes from Wally World budget bicycle supply, adding a handlebar bell for effect, swapping in an unbent front wheel obtained for free from a neighbor’s yardsale leftovers, and wiping the whole thing down with a Scotchbrite.

Bicycles.
As for plumbing pipe, it’s said that Huffys might have been made from the stuff by intent, for the ultimate in low cost construction. When you feel the weight of this thing you think that just might be true. Yet according to the Huffy badge we have something constructed of “Duralite High Strength Steel.” Oh boy.

But this bicycle works. After some TLC it should give us another fifteen years, and I could even ride the worthy steed to Wyoming and look like a local.

Comments

6 Responses to “Wyoming Cruiser Bike — Fully Licensed and Not Insured”

  1. carl September 1st, 2008 3:15 pm

    Pretty hip Lou. Nice mods. I love the fact that it’s a 15 year old Huffy (my first bike was a Huffy…hey, maybe that’s mine). It makes me cringe when I see all these shiny, hipster townie bikes that cost more than my ski boots. One of the beauties of the cruiser is parking the thing at the store and not worrying about (1) locking it up (2) it being gone when you get back. Another joy is the idea of simplicity and functionality. Finally, comfort….a cushy seat and sitting upright rather than biking bent over is pure joy.

    Lou you and your bike are welcome up here anytime any (despite a designer logo). Happy cruising!

  2. Sky September 1st, 2008 3:18 pm

    What are you doing at the salon at closing time, Lou?

  3. Dave September 1st, 2008 4:17 pm

    I’m going to defend myself here and say that most “hipster townie bikes” are not as Carl described 🙂

    1 – few cost more than your ski boots unless you are getting the rear entry special at sniagrab.

    2 – they are comfy, cheap bikes to ride when you need a break from riding your pricey mtn bike (and don’t want it stolen). And sometimes there are not a lot of junkers to be found when you need them. It took me over 3 years to find one that was big enough for me to ride.

    3 – Hipsters ride fixie’s, not cruisers. You’re thinking of tourists and second home-owners I think.

    Next time I’m in Jackson, I’ll make sure and bring my cringe worthy cruiser with me to make a few laps around your neighborhood in my new authentic western outfit! Yee-hah.

  4. Jordan September 1st, 2008 7:50 pm

    Lou I’m pretty sure I saw you riding that down the streets of Carbondale the other day, doing circles in the middle of 3rd street. I meant to ask you about that wyo plate

  5. pete anzalone September 1st, 2008 8:25 pm

    Lou,
    If you wish, I can get you a sticker for that sweet ride that says “My other bike is a P.O.S. too.” Let me know, I have a line on them (refer to http://www.wildsnow.com/?p=1142).

    Also, heavy bikes build muscles and chicks dig muscles, especially those part-taking in last call at the saloon.

    Happy cruisin’.
    -PA

  6. Lou September 2nd, 2008 7:02 am

    Yep, it all looks good at closing time, especially the Huffys!

Got something to say? Please do so.





Anti-Spam Quiz:

You can subscribe to comment notification by checking the box to left, but you must leave a brief comment to do so, which records your email and requires you to use our anti-spam challange. If you don't like leaving substantive comments that's fine, just leave a simple comment that says something like "thanks, subscribed" with a made-up name. Check the comment subscription checkbox BEFORE you submit.
If you need an emoticon for a comment just copy/paste off the following list, or use text code you might be familiar with.

:D    :-)    :(    :lol:    :x    :P    :oops:    :cry:    :evil:    :twisted:    :roll:    :wink:    :!:    :?:    :idea:    :arrow:   
  
Due to comment spam we moderate most comments. Please do not submit your comment twice -- it will appear shortly after approval. Comments with one or more links in the text may be held in moderation, for spam prevention. If you'd like to publish a photo in a comment, contact us. Guidelines: Be civil, no personal attacks, avoid vulgarity and profanity.

  Your Comments

  • Aaron: Wookie, there are days I dream of the euro support network that would allow...
  • John: Lou/Louie have you guys heard of any breakage issues in relation to the pla...
  • Quasimoto: Ever skied out east, Lou? Wind like that Scotland vid is pretty common, es...
  • Kate Brown: Is there any real difference between the 2015 boot (purple) and the new 20...
  • Truax: Lou, thanks for the response. You are correct on the apples front. I just w...
  • See: Good tips. Thanks. Lately I’m trying to reduce “unsprung” weight-- skis, bo...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Truax, my feelings and opinions change over time, along with changes in tec...
  • Wookie197: Its enlightening (enheavining ?) to see what everybody is packing....I use ...
  • Mike: Hi Lou, I've decided to buy one of the new LiPo airbag backpacks. However,...
  • Bryan: Lou, Yeah, I did get replacement heels, which G3 was very good about rep...
  • Truax: "Me, I found Dahla to be fun both on the piste and in soft but forgiving co...
  • MikeW: Also I'm going to miss my hipbelt pocket and gear loop, off to the sewing m...
  • MikeW: Thinking light is right, I packed my Ultralight 3.0 with the following for ...
  • See: To expand a bit on earlier comments: I wish more boots had easily adjustabl...
  • John Baldwin: MT - check skimo.com...
  • MT Big Blue: Apologies for thread hijacking. My question is at least binding related. Lo...
  • Lou Dawson 2: John, indeed, the boot fitter race technicians will tell you that binding r...
  • John Baldwin: Thanks for discussing this confusing topic Lou. Its the most confusing part...
  • Sfotex: Do not try to outsmart danger. - My take is don't overestimate your ability...
  • Kristian: Yes of course. I treasure and still carry the classic (made by Stubai?) li...
  • Adam Osuchowski: I recently introduced my pup to the backcountry, and she loves it! But it a...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Jay, I see the problem of "visually seductive trees" occurring all the time...
  • See: Sure, there are plenty of ways to change the effective forward lean, but (i...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Kristian, if you're really chopping you're looking for a body. Avy shovels ...
  • nate porter: Hi Louie, Have you seen much wear on the darker grey plastic piece that ho...
  • Kristian: Based on what I have seen and read, Avalanches have tremendous kinetic ener...
  • Paddy: I particularly like the "play not to lose" rule. It will get you out of do...
  • Aaron: Thanks, I will try that progression focusing on reducing stack height first...
  • Joseph: Jeez, it's not like you can't test this stuff out before putting it in your...
  • Lou Dawson 2: My advice would be to first try the 6 mm toe riser as those Verticals have ...

  Recent Posts


Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free ski touring news and information here.

All material on this website is copyrighted, the name WildSnow is trademarked, permission required for reproduction (electronic or otherwise) and display on other websites. PLEASE SEE OUR COPYRIGHT and TRADEMARK INFORMATION.

Backcountry skiing is dangerous. You may be killed or severely injured if you do any form of ski mountaineering, skimo randonnee and randonnée skiing. The information and news on this website is intended only as general information. While the authors and editors of the information on this website make every effort to present useful information about ski mountaineering, due to human error the information, text and images contained within this website may be inaccurate, false, or out-of-date. By using, reading or viewing the information provided on this website, you agree to absolve the owners of Wild Snow as well as content contributors of any liability for injuries or losses incurred while using such information. Furthermore, you agree to use any of this website's information, maps, photos, or binding mounting instructions templates at your own risk, and waive Wild Snow owners and contributors of liability for use of said items for ski touring or any other use.

Switch To Mobile Version