Southern Indiana dad hopes his bike invention will 'pop' with ki - News, Weather & Sports

Southern Indiana dad hopes his bike invention will 'pop' with kids

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The Wheel Popper The Wheel Popper
Joe Clevinger Joe Clevinger

JEFFERSONVILLE, IN (WAVE) - It seems like the best ideas are the ones that are the most simple. Think about all of the things that have caught on and become wildly popular but seem so basic. A Jeffersonville man hopes he has the next big thing on his hands, an idea that came to him by simply trying to make his children's bike ride better.

Some old plastic bottles, a couple of pieces of aluminum and a girl's bike become a treasure when in the hands of Joe Clevinger. His daughters were fascinated by bikes with a bit of a bigger bang. 

"There were a couple of Harleys coming down the road and they heard that loud rumble coming through there and they were trying to figure out how to do it on their bike," said Clevinger.

So dad thought back to, "when I was a boy growing up. I tried everything in the world to put a card on there. We had fenders on our bikes where you could hook a clothespin."

Then he got creative, inventing the wheel popper. Now the bikes of Brianna, Jasmine and Joanna attract attention wherever they go and the buzz is spreading.

"When all the other kids in the area were coming up and saying, 'Where did you get that at,' 'Where did you get that,' 'Where can I get one of those?' ... I thought, 'Well if they're interested in them, then it might be worth something to pursue,'" Clevinger said.

Clevinger has given the wheel popper to a few lucky kids in the neighborhood, but his thoughts now are more global, entering contests to put the wheel popper in position to pop up on store shelves.

"I'm hoping for the best," said Clevinger. "You know, basically I'm doing it for the girls and trying to teach them something to show that with a little bit of imagination, you can put something together and come up with an idea."

Clevinger doesn't know if this is his million-dollar idea or one that will earn any money at all, but he says he's already gotten the best reward.

"It won't create world peace and it won't end world hunger, but it sure does put a smile on the kids' faces," Clevinger said.

This is not Clevinger's first foray into invention. He actually designed a modified pick axe to cut into the ground help make it easier to remove stumps from the yard. The Earth Axe is sold now at some area hardware stores. Clevinger believes the wheel popper has the potential to be much bigger than that.

We'd like to thank our partners at the News and Tribune for giving us a heads up on this story.

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