What can YOU build from a Cranbrook ???

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by TOTAL CARNAGE, Dec 10, 2011.

  1. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    OR...What have you built? I would like to see them. this is also the official start of my Cranbrook build.
    I will start with pics tomorrow and try to keep them updated as I go. As I see it in my head now, it will be an old style, almost a board-track looking bike. twin top tubes, home made springer using the stock forks. Guess we'll see what it becomes.......In the meantime, show us your Cranbrook!
     

  2. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Well, this is my Cranbrook. I guess I should say was.....
    It has been torn down, frame sand blasted, some tubes cut out and new one added. I'm going to smooth it out and get it in primer and I'll take pics then.
     

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  3. I just brought home a Cranbrook. My plans were to use my Staton friction drive kit on it, and right now that is all I have. I also have a Chinese tank ordered, but have not received it yet. So far I have removed the fenders and chain guard. I need to find a way to lower the gearing, either by using a larger rear sprocket or a smaller front sprocket. The single speed is geared way to high for me. my right knee hurt the first time I pushed on the pedal from a dead stop. And even with a motor it will have to be pedaled a few feet to get it going.

    I like those big spokes, but am still not convinced about how strong they are. They are still made out of Chinese metal. I was originally going to get a Phat Sea Breeze, but they were 3 times as much, on sale at my local bike shop.

    I understand from reading a lot of posts that it is difficult to mount a Chinese motor on the Cranbrook, because of the oversized tubing diameter. Yet that is definitely what would look best. I also don't like the rag joint rear sprocket and especially the cheesy chain tensioner that comes with those.
     
  4. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Alright! keep us posted on what your building!
    I have never liked friction drive myself, don't like the look, don't like the weight up high and don't like the premature tire wear. Now, that's only my opinion for my riding style and my area. I'm sure there are many who love them and that's great too!
    I like the look of the new Cranbrook wheels. They look tougher than the old style rims and I think they will hold up fine. As for the rag joint, I have no problem with them. I use them on all my builds and have never had a problem with any. Some were a real pain to get set up right, grinding down the rubber or making thicker ones, grinding out the center to fit the coaster brake wheels...but once I have them where I want they are rock solid.
    As far as mounting a H.T. to one, the front mount was all that I made. I used a drop plate and U bolt. I brazed a strip inside the U bold so it wouldn't dimple the frame when tightened. other than that it was a simple mount up. I rode it for a full summer and I'm sure the collage kids were not easy on it. I haven't seen it since she bought it ( well, her dad bought) but I'm sure if there had been any problem I would have been the first one daddy would have called!!
    And last, the tensioner....All the horror stories...I was worried about them as well. I don't like drilling holes anywhere in a frame but once set and tested I pinned mine so they cannot rotate into the wheel. I figured the cheep looking plastic wheel wouldn't last and have skateboard wheels ready to modify to replace them but I have never had a failure yet and my Spaceliner and Rollfast both have well over 1000 miles on each!
    I think if you take your time, think out each step, do it right and ride it for what it is you will have a "Happy Time!" Remember, motor assisted bicycle, NOT motorcycle. WOW, that was allot of typing......I hate typing...... :thinking:
     
  5. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    Go to my profile and check out the new albums- or tell me what you think of these
    the Old Sgt.:army:
     

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  6. Al.Fisherman

    Al.Fisherman Active Member

  7. knitt31

    knitt31 New Member

    my boardtracker:
     

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  8. skipS

    skipS Member

    Mine is similar to Sgt Howards . Simple but effective
     

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  9. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Some nice looking bikes! This is where I'm stuck with my build.
    I want to get it lower, in fact I had planned on raising the rear dropouts but without any rake in the frame I can't get the front low enough with the stock forks..... :icon_cry:
    Just going to sit back and look at it for a while, I'm sure I'll figure something out :idea:
     

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  10. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Well, there was no getting around it. I had to cut and rake the frame.
    Now I can build my springer with the stock forks.
    Off topic, but check out what I picked up this weekend!
    1940 Western Flyer, skip tooth. Just need the correct chain guard.
     

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  11. Those bikes look sweet, but I'm looking for something I can ride a couple hundred miles in a day without having to worry about mechanical issues. I may paint the black China tank and black Staton friction drive kit something close to the cream color on my blue and cream colored bike to make it less noticeable.

    A rounded cruiser frame looks great with a frame mounted engine, I thought about going with one of those 4G 4 strokes with an automatic clutch, and either a ready made rear wheel, or a disc brake mountain bike wheel to avoid the rag joint sprocket. That only leaves the tensioner.

    I own a '79 Yamaha MX175 dirt bike with a blown engine, and cannot find parts to fix it. The rest of the bike is in good shape. It has a spring loaded chain tensioner bolted to the rear swingarm, which uses a nylon rubbing block instead of a roller. It is fairly large and substantial for a bicycle. If I can find the right (high quality steel) frame, I'm thinking about welding a thick steel plate to the chain stay to mount this thing too. I have also considered welding a 3/16" piece of 1 1/2" wide steel stock between the seat stay and chain stay to mount a rubbing block on. It would have too be something really substantial that couldn't break or bend.
     
  12. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    ACE Hardware "Navaho White" in spray can is the closest you will get to the Cranbrook cream- that's what I used on my "Beach Breeze" (Go to my public profile and check out 'all albums' to look at 'beach breeze'). Mounting a HT motor on a Cranny is not too hard- the newer motor kits have larger mounts. Even with the older kits, there's ways to do it. You will have to open up the big hole in the HT sprocket and I recommend a hub mount over the rag mount. Make sure you use the 415 chain for final drive... some kits have bicycle chain on board. If you wind up getting the 'High performance' carburettor, I can talk you through the process of making it work beautifully. I also recommend soldering the ground wire off the coil of the magneto to the black wire- look in the electrical section, there's some pictures of the process. Yes, I know.... several fussy little things... but you WILL wind up with a RELIABLE machine when you are done! I've got a LOT of miles on mine, and I could do showroom with only a clean and turtlewax. Crannies are not the flimsy things some people are used to- but then, mine never goes off the road and packs no speed gear, I drive with remarkable care and assist the bike by pedaling whenever feasable. I expect many more years out of this thing and I doubt I'll be dissapointed.
    the Old Sgt.:army:
     
  13. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Well, the basic bike is done. I don't even have the engine ordered yet so it will be awhile before I show anymore. While I'm waiting on the kit, I'll finish up the details, body work and get a paint job on it. What do you think, shiny or fresh barn find flat?? I still have to make a seat post, Just put it on like this for the pics :thinking: I also have to figure out how to make wheel discs for it. I want them to look like spun aluminum solid disk wheels.
    Just note: I have used almost all of the original Cranbrook. Most of the work went into the frame. Changed the top tubes, rake and molding. The handlebars are just cut down. The seat was stripped, pan and pad reshaped and recovered with the stock cover. At least it doesn't say Huffy on the back anymore!
    Well, let me know what you think it so far and if there are any custom cranbrooks out there, please, let me see them!

    suitcasejefferson....IF you're looking for something to ride a COUPLE HUNDRED miles a day you might want to consider something a little more stout than a bicycle. I'm NOT saying that our bikes won't do it but..........................................
     

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  14. danmarjon

    danmarjon Member

    nice job! great looking bike, love the seat, but its kinda hard to believe it will hold up and not bend down, I need to offset my seat back but I'm not sure how I want to do it yet
     
  15. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Thank you! I know there is no way the seat will work the way it is. I just mounted it like that to get the pics. I'll make a proper mount for it tomorrow.
     
  16. TOTAL CARNAGE

    TOTAL CARNAGE Member

    Well, I get to work on the bike now and then so this is what I have now.
    My goal for this build was to take a new Cranbrook and build something that
    no one would recognize as one. The only added parts are the spring legs, rockers and mounts. The rest is all Cranbrook! Almost all have been modified.
    Frame had the top tubes changed, raked and molded. Seat post re welded.
    stripped the seat, cut 1/2 to 1 inch off the pan, reshaped the foam and stretched the stock cover back on. Cut the stock bars, modded the kick stand and welded the wheel slots in the fork so the bushings would work. Now, I need your help with the wheels. I want them to look like spun aluminum solid discs. I have seen wheel discs but can't find them for sale anywhere. Found lots of stuff on how to make them but most look .......well, not so good, have a visible seam or are a bear to make! Any ideas??? anyone??
    That's about it for now. I'll post again when I get more done.
     

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  17. Nice. Mine is still basically stock, except for removing the fenders and installing a China gas tank. Not really going for looks, as it is a friction drive. I would like to move my seat back a bit too, but so far have not found any way to do it. I tried it on another bike with an offset BMX stem, but the stem just bent under my 220 pounds. I also bent the seatpost on one of those chopper bikes once, because it was angled too far back. It didn't bend all at once, but over time I started noticing it. One thing I did do on the Cranbrook, and have done on a few other bikes, was to drill a 3/16" hole through the frame and seatpost when I got the seat height exactly where I wanted it, and screwed a 1/4" grade 8 Allen bolt into it. Being slightly larger than the hole, it cut it's own threads, and screwed in tight, locking the seatpost in place. I found that neither a quick release clamp or a bolt would hold the seatpost in place with my weight on it. I have put over 300 miles on it so far, and am surprised I haven't broken any spokes in the rear wheel.
     
  18. toojung2die

    toojung2die Member

    Let me be the first to say you've accomplished your goal. I had to go back to the first post to remind myself what a Cranbrook looks like before you get ahold of one! The original bike was just a source of raw material. You're a sculptor in tubing. :bowdown:
     
  19. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    How much for one of your frames with forks?:army:
     
  20. Commoditism

    Commoditism New Member

    I've got a cranbrook that im trying to board track racer-ize too! I cut off the ends of the stock handle bars to try and pull of the look. I was also thinking about the classic spring forks. How would you go about making one with a stock fork?

    Heres the beaut
     

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