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Train Wreck


Cunstable Willy Shonka


My first freak bike — building mid week meant few rats around to ask build advice, or bounce ideas off.  It was supposed to be a pretty standard tall, but I err….. may not have aligned the top and bottom steer tubes, so when I’d finished, the steering didn’t move! This was because I was trying to be tricky and put the top bike much further forward, so as to avoid the dreaded front wheel lift that many talls have.  Not wanting to start again, I devised a cunning plan (as I went, and lubricated by beer) to remedy the situation.


The cunning plan resulted in a new, and very unique, steering system which utilises a series of triangles and braces extending from the lower headset all the way up to the top as one free-standing unit.  Being a different angle to the top bike steer-tube means this ‘wreck’ of metal bits tracks a very different angle — sweeping progressively further away from the frame as the turn tightens, leaving a very satisfying gap which looks completely wrong and freaks out any riders used to the standard ‘thru-steering’ tall construction.  We all like gap.  This front end is very strong — despite ‘experts’ assuring me it is a catastrophe waiting to happen.


It’s obvious why this was christened Train Wreck.  I have since added numerous upgrades including cast-iron spoon and fork, car horn, halogen light mounted in a shower head (complete with tap) and a paint job that could make you nauseous.


Sydney to ‘Gong Ride, overtaking lycra-clad safety bikers up the hills.  Though it would be a hard choose against my naming Treasure Hunt Ride.

Good attention to detail (but not structural integrity).

It defies gravity.

Sometimes it obeys the will of gravity, but not always that of the pilot.

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