A klunker bike, also known as a clunker bike, is a type of bicycle that originated in the 1970s in Marin County, California, USA. It was created by a group of young mountain bikers who wanted to ride down the steep hills and rugged terrain of Mount Tamalpais. The klunker bike was essentially a modified cruiser bike, with features such as heavy-duty frames, balloon tires, and motorcycle-style handlebars.
These modifications made the klunker bike more suitable for off-road riding and allowed the riders to tackle rough terrain with greater ease. The term “klunker” refers to the sound made by the bike’s heavy metal frame as it bounced over rocks and roots on the trail.
The klunker bike played a significant role in the early development of mountain biking, and it remains an important part of the sport’s history and culture. Today, many riders still enjoy building and riding klunker bikes as a way to connect with the roots of mountain biking and to appreciate the simplicity and durability of these early off-road machines.