Reader Rob from Melbourne, Australia sent along some awesome pictures of a cargo bike created before longtail bikes began to be manufactured by bike companies. All text and pictures are credited to Rob. If you have pictures of bike hacks from days long ago, feel free to send them along!
When I was young and fit, before either the internet or longtail bikes existed, in 1986 I built this shopping bike and used it regularly for the weekly shopping. The front wheel is 28" on an old steel frame, the rear wheel is 20" on a BMX frame.
Photo 1 shows the two frames clamped together with the BMX frame upside down to get the angles right and the front half of the BMX head stem cut off to fit against the seat tube of the front frame.
Photo 2 shows the completed frame with a wire basket on the square tube rear platform. The bike features a 3-speed internal hub and derailleur jockey wheels as a chain tensioner. It is very low geared.
Photos 3 and 4 show the basket replaced with a lightweight lockable box made from plywood and aluminium angle. The lid hinges at the front so that the lid can lean against the seat when fully open. The box easily holds the contents of a full supermarket trolley.