Turning a Budget-Friendly Bike Into a Custom Ride

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Posted on 07/07/2014

Looking for a new set of wheels, but not ready to part with a large chunk of money? There are plenty of easy ways to make small tweaks to a budget-friendly bicycle so that it looks and feels more like a custom ride.

Huckberry
Checkout the Commuter Shop on the deal site Huckberry.com to find upgraded saddles, handlebars or even a leather six-pack caddy. Hold your favorite brew securely by strapping the caddy to your top tube and seat tube. It's a hands-free way to carry some precious cargo.


Handlebar Tape
Wrapping your handlebars with new tape in your choice of color is an easy and affordable way to change the appearance of a low-cost bike. For a natural style check out the cork handlebar tape, $12 at rivbike.com. There's even a video to help give your wrap a professional look.


New Seat
A super simple way to drastically change the look of a low-end bike is by taking a few seconds to install a new seat. Upgrade to a leather saddle for a high end, vintage aesthetic. You could even reupholster it yourself with the help of instructables.com.


Fun Bell
Every bike needs a bell, but why strap on a boring one? Find a metal bike bell in a playful print or color like this one from Fuuvi Charly, $20 at urbanoutfitters.com. Mint green and purple stripes add a pop of color to an otherwise boring bike.


Bike Basket
Create the perfect place for stashing freshly baked scones and juicy red tomatoes you picked up at the farmer's market by adding a basket to your bike. Peterboro Bicycle Baskets are extremely popular right now, handcrafted from hardwood. Choose from several colors and sizes, available for just $31.46 at cambriabike.com.


Chrome Fenders
Give your bike a retro design while also making it an all-weather machine by adding new fenders. Some fenders can cost big bucks, but there are affordable options. This set of retro steel fenders from mikesbikes.com is just $43.99.


Phone Carrier
Instantly turn your bike into a high tech machine by strapping your Smartphone on to the handlebars. Ride hands free with the help of the Smartphone Bicycle Mount, $35 at missionbicycle.com. It holds most cell phones or GPS and it's padded for phone protection. And it's just another way to make your bike appear far fancier than the low budget ride it once was.


By Alison Storm


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