Montgomery Ward Open Road Newspaper Bike

L

Large Filipino

Guest
I just scored this less than an hour ago at a local garage sale. Craigslist said "Newspaper Bike 60 dollars" So you KNOW I had to check it out.
Went over there on Cronus and my kiddie trailer and it was way in back of the garage collecting dust. As I was helping the lady probably about my age dig it out back there she was telling me about how her GRANDFATHER used it to deliver the paper route when he was a child. So I'm anticipating heavy spokes and heavy duty but when it uncovered it didn't look as heavy duty as I had hoped. But it has this weird fender guard and it looks like a kind of bike one would use on a paper route.
Frankly it LOOKS like an early 70's bike but it could be earlier.
Maybe that lady said "My kid's grandfather" or her husband's dad. That may make more sense here.
Still though. That front "cage" looks like something that was used long ago.
Can someone help me identify it?
I need to know the year of this bike just for bragging reasons.
I ended up dropping the price down to 40 bucks.
I stopped at the 711 for it's 711 day!
FREE SLURPEES!!
Man did I feel like one of them "Trash People" today.
People still admired my bike,though.
I'm seriously contemplating having that "talk" with MOOP.
MOOP may have seen his last days.
This bike is way more comfortable than MOOP can ever be yes even with MOOP having the suspension fork.
I'm just built for cruisers I think.
This will be named MOOP 2 if I go ahead with the transformation.
And yes,that's a real leather seat with no real tears on it but some wear.
 

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L

Large Filipino

Guest
Here's something interesting.

"REWARD"
For information
leading to the arrest and
(conviction?) of persons taking
papers from this machine for
which they have not paid.
Please contact Rocky Mountain News
893-5370

The language or terminology is old.
No area code meaning Colorado as a whole is still the same everywhere (303)

I'm gonna go to the library come Monday.
The internets show me NOTHING!
I can't even find what years this bike was made,or what year they stopped making Hawthorns.
 

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ocscully

Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2007
Messages
659
Memory Lane Classics

e-mail the side view photo to the folks at Memory Lane Classics http://memorylane-classics.com They will be able to give you some general info about its vintage. But the records for bikes like yours aren't available the way that the info about Schwinns are available. My best guess would be middle 60's.

ocscully
 
L

Large Filipino

Guest
Thanks Dave but RMN didn't seem at all like they wanted to help. You would think someone there would be most interested for this year believe it or not thanks to our wonderful internet they COMPLETELY did away with home delivery and those that want the paper is now sent to them thru the mail.
I can't imagine that.
And oscully,is there an e-mail there? I couldn't find it. They do look quite knowledgeable though. THANKS for that.
My first job was a paper boy job. I did that for 5 seasons from 12 to 16.
I did three routes. 200 homes. Sundays was the WORST. Christmas time was the best for I got major tip action there. And everyone got sad at my last year because I never threw the paper and leave it at the driveway. Oh no. I suggested to everyone to have a newspaper box at the step and every morning it would be right in there away from the rain and up so they wouldn't even need to bend over to pick it up. And those that didn't have a box the paper would be right between the door and the storm door. Some of them gave me cookies,yo. I did this to even the ones the never tipped me. One guy that never tipped me gave me a dime one Christmas. I was always grateful. I never disrespected my elders,yo.
I can't believe that era is gone. I COMPLETELY blame the internets.

So today I greased every single moving part on that bike,and I installed the rear sprocket.Photo0276.jpg(Yes those are machine screws. Yes those are 1/4 inch nuts. I needed to clear the coaster,though. I'll keep a close eye on that daily.I think it would hold though. Nine bolts is more than enough.) I also aired up the tires and switched the back tire with a newer tire and slime tube I have laying around. Amazingly though both tubes still hold air and both rims are PERFECTLY straight.

Took it out for a ride. Okay you hear Montgomery Ward and you're thinking Department store bike,right?
WRONG. This bike is SOLID,man. Pedals real easy,QUIET as can be with no rattles or shakes.
Man. They really DID make bikes far better than today.
It's almost a CRIME to MOOP this bike,man. This bike had to have been made here in America.
I'll go ahead and continue with the MOOP conversion,but I won't drill holes in the frame or anything like that.
I completely STOLE this bike.
It's definitely worth far more.
The seat alone is worth more than 40 bucks.
 

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J

JemmaUK

Guest
you mention that fender guard and the look of the bike in general. I would say its 50's or so because of the very minimalist and simple design of it. it might even be a little older than that...

I think you are right that you got it for a cheap price, but if you think about it it was sitting there doing nothing and you are going to resurrect it and use it again.. so all things considered you are bringing something that was sitting with no purpose back to life...

and it would make a wonderful basis for a retro\oldtimer bike.

good luck with the build and we want to see pictures :)

PS.. correct me if I am wrong, but that bracket thing on the headset looks almost like it could be a mounting for a rod brake..

Jemma xx
 
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KilroyCD

Active Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2007
Messages
1,386
Large, what you have there is a Huffy made for Monkey Wards. I'm not sure when Wards dropped the Hawthorne name, but as Simple Simon said, many Hawthornes were built by Cleveland Welding (Roadmaster) or Monark. I even have a wartime Columbia-built Hawthorne "Litewate" (their spelling) in my collection. One look at the frame and I can tell you it's not a Cleveland Welding frame. Not the same contours. The real giveaway is the chainring (pedal sprocket). It's the same as a mid 1960s Huffy I refurbished for a friend. Another giveaway is the serial number beginning with two letters.
The seat looks like a Mesinger seat or a copy thereof. Mesingers are good seats, and the style is typical of the lighter weight seats they made for middleweight bikes from the late 1950s through 70s. By looking at the shorty rear fender, I'd say that dates your bike from the late 60s through the 70s. The basket around your front wheel is interesting. It resembles a skirt guard, which were usually mounted on girl's bikes and on the rear wheel. The bike is equipped with middleweight tires. If you want a little more tire on it, you might be able to get away with a pair of Kenda balloon tires on those rims. I mounted a pair of Kendas on the one I rebuilt, and they fit without rubbing the fenders. Any other brand probably wouldn't have, as the Kendas are a wee bit narrower.
It's a good solid bike from the days before they moved to overseas production. It was a good find. I'm looking forward to seeing pics of Moop II when it's completed.
 

meatwad

Member
Joined
Jul 12, 2008
Messages
38
Its a middleweight. Monark based that stated being built in the late 50s early 60s. Yours is late 70s to late 80s based on the graphics. Absolutely not older than that.
 
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