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Lowrider Magazine Article

Lowrider Bicycle History

photo-krate (5K) Lowrider bicycles were a result of the lowrider movement during the 1960's. The "custom" king George Barris first began this movement by lowering automobiles. Because of the expense of lowrider cars, kids could not afford to be a part of the lowrider car movement. Instead they began fixing up their own bicycles. Then Schwinn came out with a revolutionary new cruiser, the 1963 Sting-Ray. It was built to resemble a dragster, one of the top motor trends of the era. It took cycling from transportation to being fun to ride. In 1964 George Barris caught a glimpse of the new Schwinn and was inspired to create a museum quality custom. These were created specifically for The Munsters, "Monster Koach" and "Dragula". Joining these was Eddie Munster's wildly modified '64 Sting-Ray.Every self-respecting kid in America wanted a Schwinn Sting-Ray like Eddie Munster's.

photo-boys (12K) For a group of young East Los Angeles Chicanos, however this was not enough The first modifications was filling in the frame, adding streamers and mirrors, and pretty soon started lowering them. Bending the fork was the most common way of lowering them. The Schwinn bikes seemed to fit the Latin spirit because they had a lot of chrome and so were similar to lowrider cars. It never really reached beyond East Los Angeles in this early phase. These groups were not considered very serious at the time. Soon BMX bikes came in and lowrider bicycles took a siesta.

photo-girls (13K) During the 1970's lowrider bicycles began making a come back. This was partly to do with the Mexican-American movement. In the 60's it was considered a bad thing to be Mexican. Then with the Chicano movement of the 70's, it became a good thing to have Mexican heritage, which was good for everyone. All of a sudden Mexican-Americans were making gains in this society. That's when lowrider bikes came back on the streets.

Lowrider's as bikes are a different concept of bike riding. The options are endless in designing your own fashion statement style for the streets. The hole lowrider bike movement started from the 1960's. and the "custom" king George Barris,and in 1964 the Schwinn Sting-Ray was born. With the help of Eddie Munstor ever kid in the USA wanted one. Find out more and out the history have a look at the links below

Lowrider history links

Lowrider magazine Lowrider history
The birth of the original sting-ray


Washington Post Article

Rise and fall of Schwinn Bicycle illustrates shifting world economy
By Griff Witte / The Washington Post