Heavyweight Schwinn Chopper Bike to make a fast comeback
Author: Judy Hunt, enews editor
Date: Monday, January 23 2012
Lance Richards has big plans for this newly purchased Chopper Bike.
To the hundreds of earth-friendly folks who visited St. Vinnie’s booth at the Good Earth Show last weekend, it was “wheel good” seeing you!
We enjoyed sharing our multi-faceted selection of human-powered transporters with the possible exception of the one that was no more than a wheel and a rotating frame with foot rests and a hand grip. If you tried it out, forgive us for clinging to your sleeves.
Our first sale came at 5:01 p.m. sharp on Friday when Lance Richards of Eugene pounced on the Schwinn Sting Ray Orange County Chopper Bike. Owner of Lance Richards’ Design & Fabrication, he builds electric dragsters, combat robots “for guys with big budgets and bad attitudes,” and battery-powered bicycles.
He said Schwinn sold millions of Orange County Chopper Bikes between 2002 and 2006.
He described the scenario: “Dad, you gotta buy this for me. Then the kid rode it and found out how heavy it was. So they put it in the garage, and there it sits.
“But for adding motors, it’s perfect.”
St. Vinnie's Chopper Bike, Lance’s second, was in perfect condition. Like his first, Lance will add components from around the world, including a 1000-watt hub motor, a 16-amp/hr. battery with a charger and speed controller on board, and a cycle analyst to track energy usage and alert the rider when the battery is low.
|Lance's first modified Chopper Bike, beloved by its current owner.|
The modified Orange County Chopper Bike will reach speeds of more than 30 mph, but if it goes any faster than 20 mph on a public roadway the rider “had better be pedaling,” Lance said. A helmet is advisable.
Lance’s first Chopper Bike conversion sold in a flash to a guy who loves it and was lamenting the recent storms that kept him off the road. Lance plans to hang onto this project long enough to cruise the Saturday Market and the Fairy Festival. “Eugene is it,” he said. “And I’m too old to get a job, and I’m not ready to retire.”
You can even watch for the modified Chopper Bike in this year's Ride Naked Eugene.