SkyWalker is a radical two wheeler that allows the bicycle hacking adrenaline junkie to surf the skies while at the same time amusing or confusing the slack-jawed onlookers below. Sure, tallbikes are nothing new, and have been around since the 1800's, but SkyWalker takes things to new heights by allowing the rider to climb up and down the frame while the bike is in motion. What this means for tallbike pilots is that they no longer have to cling to a telephone pole to mount the bike, and worry about finding another pole when it comes time to dismount. SkyWalker is designed so that the pilot can control the bike from the ground, and all the way up to the top while climbing the built in ladder. Since the handle bars double as ladder handrails, the pilot is under complete control of the tallbike during the entire ascent.
Why would a person want to build and ride a 12 foot two wheeler you ask? To win a Darwin award? Train for the circus? Overcome a fear of heights? Set a world record? Who can say, but for me it has always been the same reason - because it's fun, and it beats sitting on my butt watching the tube!
The SkyWalker idea was originally drawn on a coffee stained napkin, and then later transferred to a 3D concept as shown in Photo1. The 3D model was used to get a better idea if the steering and transmission would actually work, since the frame was somewhat complex and involved a bizarre linked steering system. Normally, I just grab whatever scrap metal I can find and go nuts with the welder when making crazy bikes like this, but for SkyWalker I decided to follow the 3D plan exactly so I knew the final product would actually work as planned.
The photos presented here are somewhat low quality due to the fact that I built SkyWalker outdoors in early spring while the ground was still frozen, and did not actually intend to document it very much. Some of the photos were also taken at night, as I built the entire tallbike in one weekend just for a fun change.
SkyWalker is made of nothing more than a few standard bicycle components salved from the dump and a few lengths of thin walled electrical conduit from the hardware store. Even the curved tubes are nothing more than factory elbows. As for tools, I only used an angle grinder and a basic AC welder, nothing more. In other words, anyone with a pile of scrap bike parts and some tubing can do the same using any welder at all.
More cool projects can be found at: http://www.chopzone.com