Lowrider — is it a car, driver, musical genre or movement? It’s all that and a bicycle, too. After all, what do you do if you’re a lowrider without a car? Trick out your bike.
Lowrider Custom Bikes
1. Begin with what being a lowrider is all about: hydraulics. In lowrider cars, hydraulic lift kits make the vehicle height adjustable so that the car can clear bumps and ditches. Lowrider bicyclists accomplish the same feat via battery-powered air pumps. You can buy a kit and do the hook-up, which entails attaching the pump with brackets and adding wiring connect the battery to the pump. Some bike frames cannot take the pressure of hydraulics and need to be extended and reinforced.
2. Consider aesthetics. Now that you have the mechanics handled, the most important aspect of customizing a lowrider bike is aesthetics. Check out images of custom bikes or go to events to get an idea of what you prefer. Some people like custom elements that are purely for looks, such as embellished fenders, while others want features that also have a functional element, such as flashing lights.
3. Do some simple replacements. Trade out those old school handlebars for a chain link steering wheel. Switch out the skinny tires for those with 144 spokes. Reupholster the bicycle seat in plush velvet. Attach some etched mirrors for the ultimate in lowrider swank.
4. Add some metalwork. A custom lowrider bike needs intricate metal designs. You have many options, with budget-oriented choices such as spiky sprockets and bike plaques. On the more expensive side, you can invest in custom face parts.
5. Finish the look with a custom paint job. For lowrider style, dark colors and metallics are excellent. Tattoo-like graphics of roses, knives, blood, flames, the Virgin of Guadalupe, the chupacabra monster and guns are classic lowrider iconography. Don’t forget to include your lowrider nickname in old English lettering.