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Vintage bike ID


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#1 Lone Wolf

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 10:50 AM

Just picked this relic up today.

 

How friggin' cool is this.   :good:

 

DSC00946.JPG

 

Can anyone ID this frame? I think it's rare. The head badge is missing.

 

Thanks.


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Joe Lupo





#2 Booger

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 01:35 PM

That looks like something a company called Workman would have made, highly modified of course.

 

They are makers of industrial bicycles,made in New York,since the 1890s... I think they are still around.


Gary "Booger" Baker

#3 Samiam

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 01:37 PM

It's a '60s B&S motor.


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Sam Levitch
 
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#4 Lone Wolf

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 02:35 PM

Sam, the motor is a 6BS, presumably made between 1955 and 1958. Still has the oil bath air cleaner  :)

 

Gary, the guy I got it from claimed the frame was rare but he said he forgot the name. Who knows? The frame is not modified except for the motor plate.


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#5 bluecars

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 02:36 PM

I'd bet on totally homemade.


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Robert "Red" Valantine :diablo: 


#6 Pablo

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 06:51 PM

Whatever it is, I love it :D  Kind of looks like a speedway dirt bike.


Paul Wolcott

#7 Joe Mig

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 09:09 PM

It looks Frankenstein to me.
I love these creations.
Yes Works bicycles is still around located in Ozone Park, NY.


Joseph Migliaccio. Karma it's a wonderful thing.

"Drive it like you're in it!!!"

"If everything feels under control... you are not going fast enough!"

Some people are like Slinkies... they're really good for nothing... but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down a flight of stairs.

#8 Ramcatlarry

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 11:42 PM

Call Mark Mattei of Cycle Smithy in Chicago - he is the two-wheel historian...


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Larry D. Kelley, MA
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#9 slotcarone

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 12:45 AM

I think the frame may be a Columbia. :) 


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Mike Katz

Scratchbuilts forever!!


#10 Lone Wolf

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 07:01 AM

Thanks, guys. Mike, you are correct. I have it on Craigslist and some guy said it was a Columbia Firebolt which seems to be correct. 

 

Yes, Joe, you are correct, too.

 

The Firebolt was a 26 incher to which someone mated a 20" fork to for that awesome rake.

 

Thanks for the  :good: Pablo

I was looking up 20" bikes, that's why I couldn't ID it.   :dash2:

 

How about that 60-year old Briggs. Runs amazing, like a  Swiss watch. You can turn the idle down to about 12 RPM.   :laugh2:

 

Come on over, I'll bet anyone a C-note it starts on the first pull.

 

God, I miss the America of my "Yoot."


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Joe Lupo


#11 Mark Mattei

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 12:04 PM

Best as I can tell 1961 Columbia Firebolt. The big white button on top of the tank is for a ding dong bell, not an electric horn.

 

Cheater, thanks for the message requesting some input.

 

Mark

 

IMG_7779.JPG

 

IMG_7780.JPG

 

IMG_7781.JPG


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#12 Dave Crevie

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 02:05 PM

Yup. Those were the days. Go-Karts and Mini-Bikes running all over the neighborhood. 


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#13 Pablo

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 03:07 PM

Joe, does the stick shifter actually work, or it is a one-speed with centrifugal clutch and the shifter just looks good?
 
Dave, back in the day I wanted a Rupp, a Taco, or a Steens. What I got was a Go-Devil scooter that folded into a suitcase. :dash2:
 
Later, I wanted a Yamaha 125. What I got was a 65cc Harley Davidson/Aermacchi Leggero. :dash2:
 
The 1988 new off the showroom floor Honda CR500 I bought made up for all those years of suffering. :laugh2: :dance3:
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Paul Wolcott

#14 Lone Wolf

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Posted 10 April 2017 - 04:05 PM

Thanks, Mark, wish it came with the tank.
 
Pablo, what you are mistaking for a shifter is a '50s lawnmower throttle.  :)
 
I think this was the owner's answer to the original throttle breaking. The right side handgrip actually is for a Schwinn three-speed hub. A cable come out of this to control the gears and I think he may have had it set up as a throttle. A little strange though as it has three detents and would be kind of a crude cruise control.
 
No clutch, just standard washing machine pulley fare.  :)
 
Just push and go. As far as brakes, those were shoes, not brake shoes but the rider's shoes/  :laugh2:
 
I feel your pain. Rich kid across the street had a Rupp Black Widow that we removed the governor on and installed an unbreakable connecting rod. Milled the head on a piece of 1/4" plate glass with sandpaper. His old man was a plumber so we made an exhaust out of some chrome pipe we threaded and gave it a balony tip.
 
Thing kicked-*** but was no match for my Stella with a Mac 101. Took a lot of balls to ride that one. Once it got in the power band, hold on.
 
Friggin' motor is worth more than my car today.
 
I was the EJ Potter of E. Jefferson Ave.   :)

Joe Lupo


#15 Dave Crevie

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Posted 11 April 2017 - 03:34 PM

Commercially made mini-bikes came long after we had built ours. And the fun was as much in the building as
in the riding. Learned a lot of engineering principals by trial and error.

My friends and I built our first powered bike in 1961, using a junk 26 inch frame, and mounting a Mac chain saw engine from a saw that fell out of a  tree (with the operator) and broke all the cutter bar mounts. The clutch had also been broken, so we did not use one. Just bump and go. We didn't believe in brakes either.

This thing could really get going, especially on our street with a slight downhill grade. We crashed this thing probably a dozen times, but nobody ever got seriously hurt.

We followed it up with a Cushman Eagle frame with an eight horse Kohler lawn tractor motor. This had a clutch, but still no working brakes. The motor had tons of torque, and we kept gearing it up until you could hardly hold on coming from dead stop. It would top out at about forty.

A series of go-karts followed, culminating in an FKE Hawk with a Yamaha twin.

#16 Samiam

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Posted 11 April 2017 - 07:06 PM

Were helmets anywhere in this parade of internal combustion, smoke and madness?


Sam Levitch
 
"If you have integrity, nothing else matters, and if you do not have integrity, nothing else matters."
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#17 slotcarone

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 01:03 AM

I remember building an electric bike using a surplus aircraft starter with a 2 inch chuck direct drive on the rear wheel. Had a long narrow 12 volt car battery mounted next to the rear wheel. Just off and on so it was real hairy!!


Mike Katz

Scratchbuilts forever!!


#18 Lone Wolf

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 06:59 AM

Mike, that just reminded me of something long forgotten.

 

My friend who had the Rupp across the street had a older brother that made an electric skateboard.

 

I had forgotten all about it until now.

 

He used a 12 volt car battery and a starter motor. A real contraption that looked wild but performance was lacking. 

 

Seemed he charged the battery more than anything else.

 

They were crazy Mopar guys.

 

The whole neighborhood gathered around one time as they started a mostly stock 392 Hemi in the driveway on a wooden homemade stand. Just the motor. 

 

As I mentioned the old man was a plumber so they soldered up a fuel can made from a coffee can with a petcock and everything. 

 

Then they used some galvanized pipe to extend the exhaust a little.

 

Then just started that sucker up all alone in the middle of the driveway.

 

Cool **** when you are 14  :D

 

Ted was my best friend growing up and never got the two wheel thing out of his blood.

 

Doing R&D at S&S.

 

 

Also, check out his 96" Sportster.

 

https://www.facebook...154526755148452

 

 

Sometimes when I tell these stories and read them they almost seem made up. 

 

I can assure you with 100% honesty they are all true.

 

I'm sure others of our age have many cool stories to tell.

 

Oh, and Sam, what's a helmet?  :laugh2:  :laugh2:  :laugh2:  :laugh2:


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#19 Dave Crevie

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 02:11 PM

Right. We didn't use helmets.

 

At the end of my block the street ended. The city had built a barricade out of railroad ties to prevent cars from driving past the end of the paved street and out into the field. I hit that thing on our cobbled-up bike at close to full speed. I went over the barricade head first, and the bike followed, going over me and ending up quite a little ways past where I landed. I had a big bruise on my right thigh, but

otherwise was unhurt.

 

Every kid in my neighborhood hit that barricade with a bike, mini-bike or go-cart at some time or another. No deaths, and no hospital stays that I can remember. Several years ago we had a kid nearly killed when he slammed his big-wheel into a parked car. So what is different? 



#20 Brian Cochrane

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 04:01 PM

Very cool to see this! I used to build motorbikes for the cool guys in my area back in the mid 60's.The three speed twist grip had a ball bearing in it that would click it into each speed ,if you take the ball bearing out it will twist without the click.The rear pulley is from a washing machine.You cut the hub out of it and drill some holes in the face to put bolts through to hold it against the spokes .The bigger the pulley the more pick up from a dead stop.The smaller the pulley the more top end.I would use a piece of angle iron to mount the base of the motor to the frame.At the top of the motor I would use a peice of strap around the frame and connect it to the engine through a head bolt.We would go to the lawn mower shop and buy a centrifical clutch for a couple of bucks.Then you go to the local gas station and start pulling down a ton of fan belts till you find one that fits.I loved making these back then,I would put sissy bars on them and lower the seat down.


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#21 Samiam

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 04:57 PM

 I used to build motorbikes for the cool guys in my area back in the mid 60's.

 

You never built me one. :unknw:  :(


Sam Levitch
 
"If you have integrity, nothing else matters, and if you do not have integrity, nothing else matters."
     Robert Mueller, special counsel (2013)

#22 tjsguns

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Posted 25 September 2017 - 01:47 AM

Mini bikes were really cool back then!!!

 

And Rupp was king of the road.

 

We made our own from threaded steel pipe and a steel plate to mount the motor on.
Chain driven, centrifical clutch ($8 at the lawn mower shop).
The most expensive parts were the wheels and tires, which we stole the from the lawnmower shop which covered more than the price of the clutch (and cables, nuts, and bolts we needed to complete the project).

 

These we could get up to about 50 MPH going downhill, with the wind.

 

I proceeded from those to every motorbike and cycle you could ever name and a lot you can't but I paid for all of those (almost)
I've now graduated to a 2003 Harley Softail Custom that looks as awesome as it rides. However, I must sell the bike now as I have contracted terminal pancreatic and liver cancer.

7,000 miles, $6,000 worth of custom parts including matching trunk with quickchange clips, $2,700 custom Mustang seat with built-in backrest. Pics available, just reply to this post.

 

$9,000 OBO.


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#23 Cheater

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Posted 25 September 2017 - 07:57 AM

Send me the Harley pics, Tom. I'll post 'em here for you.


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#24 Dave Crevie

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Posted 25 September 2017 - 02:12 PM

Very sorry to hear about your health, Tom. It hurts to hear about someone in that situation, but even more when it is a rider. I lost too many friends when I rode. Dangerous bikes (choppers) and dangerous driving habits. 







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