Got rust? California style.

Discussion in 'Photos & Bicycle Builds' started by Saabsonettguy, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. Did a little cleaning in the garage and figured I'd take a shot my "vintage" project. I put the board track bike on the back burner to work on this machine. I'm slowly collecting parts and have been messing with the wood mock up mounts to get the engine where I like it but its starting to take shape. The frame appears to be 1920's or possibly older though many of the other parts have been replaced. The frame still retains some of its original paint and hasn't been sanded to preserve its natural patina. The wheels are quite large 26" 1949 sturmy archer 3 speed, incorrect for this frame but still cool. The engine is a 50cc belt drive with compression release. The cylinder will be machined so the cooling fins are cylindrical in shape and a new head will be cast. I have a model t buzz coil for the which will be wired into the ignition. I think I'll do the fuel tank in brass for a bit of class. This design is based on my favorite motorcycle of all time, the California motor bicycle. Like the California it will have a top speed of around 25mph.


    (edit: I scaled the image down to 600 to keep everyone happy, for a slightly larger image click here. project/rustyride1.jpg

    Update. Stuck the coil on it and it does spark! I smashed a small bicycle wheel flat to see if it could be used for a pulley but its not to my likings. Still need to get a whizzer pulley and build/find a fuel tank then I'll start welding everything up. Found another crack that needs welding, I wish I knew how many miles are on this poor bike. She's been around thats for sure.


    I forgot I could add on to my first post, phpbb is great.

  2. Tom

    Tom Active Member

    That is going to be one sweet looking ride!

    Thanks for scaling the images down!
  3. psuggmog

    psuggmog Guest

    I have an old pre WWI frame(regal brand) that used to look like the one in your picture(rusty). I gave it lots of elbow grease and rubbing compound, but no wirebrushing. You can see the results: I like the patina of time and use to new paint. The trick is to preserve that. I use a few coats of paste wax over the cleaned up finish. This seems to work better than a clearcoat for me. I have newer steel rims on this bike since the wooden rims were unusable.
  4. Wow, that thing is beautiful. Mine doesn't have that much paint left. Mine only has small areas such as the bottom, the rest is rust with blotches of someones attempt at repainting it many years ago. I wish I could find wood rims for mine, the only newish ones available are too large.
  5. srdavo

    srdavo Active Member

    very cool!
  6. CALIFORNIA!! do yay mean like this one? This is my replica I built for the George Wyman centennial. [​IMG]
  7. Your California replica is wonderful. Have you come across any info on the elusive duck motor cycle brake? I found a scan of the 1903 ad but haven't come across any actual close ups to figure out how it is built or how it works. I've also been unable to locate a patent number to look it up.
  8. Oh that damn Duck brake. The only one I know of is on a 1902 California in Michigan. a fellow named Mark Michel. It's a typical lever brake, but with some kind of rollers that rub on the wheel, I had a simular brake in hand and made a bunch of drawings and tracings. but it wasn't a "Duck" brake.
  9. Is this the pic you have? [​IMG]
  10. Yes, thats the only thing I could find on it.
  11. uncle_punk13

    uncle_punk13 Guest

    That's the only thing anyone could find on it. That bloody 'duck' brake has caused more rumors and superstition than anything else in the antique motorcycle world...!
    I too find the California to be one of the finest examples of motorcycle (motor bicycle) ever to be built. It later became the Yale.
    But then again maybe I'm biased...
    I really dig your project, keep us updated on your progress...