Re: introducing the bairdco prototype cruiser.
Your bike looks great. The tank is perfect and I like that you did the rear fender 'short', eliminating the need to butcher it up for chain clearance. I'm glad to hear you have something else cooking.
I think the rag joint is a problem mostly for when you're new to all this. Once you've done a few you start getting better at it, realizing how critical it is to get things centered and true. I find that it helps me if I mount the rear wheel on the bike turned upside down and slowly tighten up the hardware a little at a time, spinning the wheel to see how things look, tighten it here, spin it, tighten some more. If you're careful and take your time you can do a nice job of it. The adapter and sprocket from Creative engineering makes a tedious job quick, easy and foolproof, but is also another cost to add in to all the others on a build. Sometimes you just can't afford everything you'd like.
Someday when I grow up I will probably lose interest in toys with wheels, but until then...