July 18, 2005--Posted at 9:30 a.m. CDT
PARAGOULD, AR-- Chuck Gratzle calls himself Mr. Fix It, a mechanical wizard, and this wizard has cast his spell on a motorcycle.
However this motorcyle, built entirely from scratch, is silent. Gratzle's easy rider is an all electric bike, built on a Honda chasis and a 48 volt electric fork lift motor. Gratzle's bike uses 4, deep cycle batteries and will run for a little more than hours, before needing a recharge.
There's no transmission, just a direct, chain, drive. You twist the throttle and off it goes.
Gratzle says his "hawg" without the howl, will go 80 mph, but has a cruising speed of 55 and will travel 50 miles before needing an outlet. He built the bike for his commute from Paragould to the ASU campus in Jonesboro, where he's a junior in mechanical engineering.
Gratzle says his silent bike took him about 6 months to build, during his spare time, and cost about $500.