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Picture of Custom Snapdeck for Xtracycle cargo bike
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My Xtracycle needed a new "snap deck", which is the flat carrying area above the rear tire.  I wanted something a little more distinctive than the stock deck, and also wanted to try a longer deck. 

I started by doing some "CAD" - Cardboard Assisted Design, that is. I made a few sample decks using some cardboard, and trimmed them until I found a size and shape I liked. 

I considered cutting the deck out on the bandsaw or with a hand-held jigsaw, but decided I wasn't steady enough to pull that off. Besides, I have access to TechShop's Shopbot, and it's way more steady than I am. 

Step 1: Sketch design on cardboard

Picture of Sketch design on cardboard
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I sketched the desgn in cardboard, and test fitted a few ideas. 

Once I settled on a design, I translated it into the computer version of CAD, and then created the shopbot file from that.

Shown here is the test piece made from scrap plywood. 
 
BillBiker2 years ago
One other thing I suggest is that if you added wheels in the right places it could double as a skate board ;) .
I've seen that actually. There's a guy in SJ that has a longboard as his deck. When he's running errands, he can park the bike in a central location, pop off the board and use that to get from spot to spot.
Wow that's actually a cool idea for a delivery type person! By the way to the author I really was serious about the wheels idea.
BradMartinson (author)  BillBiker2 years ago
I've seen photos of a couple who have longboards as their snapdecks. The Cherry I used for this one is way too stiff for a skateboard, but it can work like this:
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This looks SLICK! I always test fit items with cut paper bags, but cardboard I imagine works even better! Thanks for another great post.