Questions for you stretch beach cruiser guys

tylden

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Jul 2, 2008
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I really like the looks of these stretch beach cruisers but none of the bike shops in my area have them. Would any of these frames properly fit someone about 5'8" or are they pretty much built for taller people ? Have any of you tried to load one on a car's bike rack to travel with ?? Are they comfortable after riding around town all day ? And finally, can you pedal them with the motor off if you need to ? It seems to me the long wheel base would really make for a stable smooth ride. Sorry for so many questions in one thread.
 

NunyaBidness

Active Member
Jun 29, 2008
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memphis tn
I don't think it was anything you said, it's just that answers aren't always very fast in coming on some subjects. The folks most familiar with your questions may not come to the site very often, I know if I had some of the setups I've seen those guys ride, I wouldn't be here posting, I'd be out riding ;)
 

bamabikeguy

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Jun 28, 2008
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Holly Pond, AL
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I rode Jack Shields California Stretch Cruiser Monday morning, and I'm the same height.

He has a GEBE (kit only) with an e-bay purchased pocket rocket engine, claims they've clocked him at 52 mph...but his grandson's both broke belts when they gunned it like a smaller 33cc engine.

Anyway, with the speedometer reading 28-30, I was helping it along, not wanting to really race it....took a bit of adjusting to the coaster brakes.

I'd say it would be more for the Sunday cruising the strip mall type showing off, 10-20 mile round trips. He uses a different bike for longer trips, just kind of pokes around on the cruiser.

It would be a good "second bike", imho.
 

Venice Motor Bikes

Custom Builder / Dealer/Los Angeles
Mar 20, 2008
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Los Angeles, CA.
The stretch cruisers do look VERY COOL!
but I can tell from looking at the pics of them that they require custom made motor mounts for these engines, & they also require very long drive chains!
Just from looking at the pics, I've always wondered about how bad the chain must "slap around" at higher speeds?
I've built many of these motorbikes, & this is just my guess because I've never riden a stretch, but I'm thinking a bike with a more "traditional" wheel base would be a better choice for long rides.
 

tylden

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Jul 2, 2008
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Thanks for the input guys. I've been debating whether or not I should convert my Raleigh RetroGlide 7 or keep it as it is for peddling around the neighborhood (good exercise that I've come to enjoy). I've also been considering the Schwinn Deluxe 7 cruiser if I can find one, but I'm not sure if it's safe to add front brakes to a springer fork or not. The kit I have ordered is from Staton Inc., the Honda 49cc 4 stroke, rack mount gear box and Nuvinci hub. I just thought the stretch cruisers might ride a bit smoother and be a bit more stable. Whatever route I go, the bike will be used for my local in town transportation and grocery hauler (with a trailer) so I can leave my gas guzzling SUV parked as much as possible. I thought I might as well do it in style though since it doesn't look like I'll ever have that '59 Cadillac lol.
 

bamabikeguy

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Jun 28, 2008
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Holly Pond, AL
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When I started looking for aluminum cruisers, I found the Sun brands were about $50-100 less than the equivalent aluminum Schwinns, and my "Cadillac", Sun Comfort Rover 21 speeds are identical (except for the decals) to the Diamondback, for nearly $150 less.

J & B catalogs at a bike shop will show the range of Sun Cruisers, (because the Sun Website sux).

You can use those savings for decking them out with gizmos and gadgets.
 

RedB66

Active Member
Dec 28, 2007
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Sunshine State
I have built two stretch cruisers (identical...but two). I am 5' 9" 200lbs and I love the ride of these bikes. I have built about six bikes so far and the stretch has to be the most comfortable. On my second stretch I did reduce the sprocket size (regular sprocket , not the motor) from a standard 44T to a 36T. Having to manually pedal these bikes is not the best time you can have. These are heavy bikes (compared to my other builds). For me these stretch frames are the best ride, I have a springer front end and a springer seat combined with the long wheel base (88" tire to tire).
And I think they just look cool!!! Riding the bike around town the questions and compliments I get on the bike are second to none. People just love the bike itself, the fact that it is motorized is the icing on the cake.
If you are considering building one I say "Do it" you'll like it. Reduce the sprocket though..the 36T makes all the difference.
 

Ima Schwinner

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Jul 21, 2008
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E. Oregon
I'm bumping this thread back up for more comments.

Does the stretch cruiser start to fatigue your lower back or even force your stomach into doing a continual "crunch." I've been riding a Mtn Bike for so long that I've forgotten what a standard cruiser feels like, so I can only guess how a stretched cruiser rides. I'm 6'03" which usually means a tall frame (23/24") with the seat post run up pretty high. With my rear in the air, it puts more weight on my upper body, which starts to ache before my legs are tired of peddling.

In theory, the stretched cruisers would let me sit lower, almost like a recumbent. I can tell that peddling would be less efficient, and feel weird at least at first, but for motor-assisted biking (and with a 36T crank), maybe it'd be the ticket. My only fear is that I might be forced to lean back, while also leaning forward to reach the bars, and I'm not sure that a motorcyle backrest would look good on a stretched bicycle.

While I'm narrowing down my final decisions on engine size for a GEBE kit, I'm also trying to decide which bike I want to buy. At this point, the choices are a Felt 1903, a Worksman Industrial, or a GT/Schwinn stretched cruiser. The first two are premium bikes, and already have 12 and 11g spokes, so you DO get what you pay for with the higher end cruisers. The larger Worksman frame is only 20" though, so I've almost eliminated it, as much as I hate to. I haven't researched the Felt sizes yet. Maybe a custom frame with Worksman wheels (w/ drum brakes) would be the way to go.

Has anyone out there cracked to code to long distance comfort----------especially us vertically burdened guys?
 

nogoodnic

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Jan 29, 2008
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I'm a cruiser guy, I have many for both pedaling and motoring. The standard cruisers will ride similar to what your used to on a mtn bike without the skinny rock hard seat and the steering is a bit less twitchy, great for riding long distances if you have the time. I also have a Sun streatch that rides like a dream, very comfortable riding position, geometry makes it great on curvy roads and would make a great motobike. Downfall to a streatch is pedaling up hills, the leverage is wrong, also your ride height is much lower than a regular bike and you are less visable to cars. Now I have found a happy medium that are styled like a standard cruiser and has a 4" streatch that makes the bike more comfortable to ride and the extra length enhances handling at 30mph. The two that I've used in the past are the GT/Dyno Kustom Kruiser frames and the Sun Custom Cruisers both very similar frames, there may be others also. Hope this helps...Kelly
 

Ima Schwinner

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Jul 21, 2008
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E. Oregon
Thanks for the feedback. What model Sun do you own? I checked the website and didn't see a stretch. What are your feelings about the quality of the GT-Dyno? They're discontinued, but I don't know if they're worth hunting for. How tall are you, and would running the seat up change "the ride?" Thanks.
 

tylden

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Jul 2, 2008
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For what it's worth, I decided against the stretch cruiser because of the hills where I live....very long steep hills, and the lack of versatility. So, the 49cc Honda and the Staton rack mount kit is going on the Raleigh Retro Glide 7, a standard cruiser, for longer journeys and "joyriding". As for a stretched bike, I ordered a Yuba Mundo utility bike which is designed to haul cargo and heavy things. It will be powered by an 400W/48v eZee electric front hub motor and will be used for local errand running and haulling groceries. Also, I have two sons that will also be using the bike. One is 6'3" tall (I'm 5'8) and the Mundo can easily adjust for him to ride as well. I'm not real crazy about going electric on a utility bike, but I think the slower speeds, lack of engine noise, and the discreet look will certainly help keep my boys out of trouble with the police and nosy neighbors. It seems to make sense for my situation anyway. Those stretch beach cruisers sure are lookers though....if I lived in an area with flat terrain, I'd have to have one.
 

nogoodnic

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Jan 29, 2008
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Shelby MI
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Thanks for the feedback. What model Sun do you own? I checked the website and didn't see a stretch. What are your feelings about the quality of the GT-Dyno? They're discontinued, but I don't know if they're worth hunting for. How tall are you, and would running the seat up change "the ride?" Thanks.
My Sun is not badged with a style name, I think in the J&B catalog it was called the Sun Streatch. I don't see it in their catalog this year, it may be discontinued. The quality of the GT/Dyno/Kustom Kruisers, I think is great. My motobike is a Kuston Kruiser Duece that I have had no problems outside of upgrading fender brackets. I have ridden their Roadster and Slick Daddy models and they are both great bikes. BTW the Sun frame is aluminium compared to the KK frames that are steel....Kelly

I don't have a pic of the Streatch by itself, this is a shot that I took for another site just after aquiring the Electra Jeremy.
 

Ima Schwinner

New Member
Jul 21, 2008
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E. Oregon
Thanks for the info Kelly. That's a VERY nice collection you've got there. I always appreciate seeing bikes photographed in their "natural environment," vs. the typical mfg's website shots. I get a much better idea of what the bike actually looks like. There's not one in your collection I wouldn't enjoy riding.
Ima
 

justinc

New Member
Dec 11, 2012
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estero,florida
I too am thinking of building a stretched cruiser and am chrious on the extras that have to be do to compensate for the longer chain and what would be the right spoke count for this build. As i have just finished a onyx genesis 29er and want a longer meaner cruiser
 

donb4103

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Oct 7, 2011
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Chickasha,Oklahoma
I have built a few of the Micargi Mustangs. I really do like riding them. I am 5`10 and weigh about 210. These bikes fit me real well. There is almost no chain slap if the motor is mounted up to the seat post and add a new post for the front of the engine. That keeps the engine back as far as it can go. Makes for a lot shorter chain. The only downside to these bikes is having to pedal it without the motor running. Other then that, it is best riding bike out of the 26 or so different bikes that I have built. The latest stretch I built is posted right here on this forum. You can see where the engine sits on it for getting some ideas about mounting.
 

thegnu

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Sep 15, 2011
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freedom pa
I love a stretch long wheel base = smoother ride altho mounting the motors can be a challenge . need any ideas or questions just ask .
Gary