He's an artist, he's a welder and he's a philanthropist. A Vernon man is making his mark in the bicycling world and beyond with his unique skills at taking whatever is available and creating bicycles out of scraps.
For Hispanic Heritage Month, NBC4's Ted Chen profiles the man called the "scrap father."
The next time you see a bunch of people riding unusual looking bicycles, there' a good chance at least one of them might be the creation of one man.
Art Ramirez creates bicycles but not just any bikes. They're the kind that make your eyes pop. His bicycles go by names like "skeletron," "cobra," "viper," and "chariot."
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They are custom made stretch bikes and they were born when Ramirez watched some California bike riders one day and decided he wanted to do something different.
"All these guys every morning I was going to have to do that but I didn't want to do it that way," Ramirez said.
Ramirez's ways was building from scratch. He built his first bikes from bicycle parts he'd find in scrap yards hence the nickname, "scrap father."
Soon his fame took off among bicycling enthusiasts who came to him with their vision of a dream bike.
Ramirez's bikes win prizes at bike shows across the country and they're very popular at the Burning Man Festival. He now builds as many electric bikes a pedal bikes.
It was something else that the helped build that drew even more attention. When a Hollywood St. vendor's cart got pushed over and damaged five years ago, Ramirez helped make him a new one, complete with LED lights and a longer lasting battery.
Ramirez loves the bike life. He sees it as a family and a community that loves to ride and one where you might find Ramirez's metals.