Coda

furyus

Pro Member
Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
Remember @furyus , this is Rat Rod Bikes; not the CABE So we are a lot more lenient as to how close the bike is to 'original' or even how close it needs to be. :grin: Granted, Class 1 is the category for 'restoration or refreshing' a bike to at least a close facsimile to 'original'. But don't let your originality get lost in the origin of the bike itself.

or·i·gin
/ˈôrəjən/
noun
  1. 1.
    the point or place where something begins, arises, or is derived.
o·rig·i·nal·i·ty
/əˌrijəˈnalədē/
noun
  1. the ability to think independently and creatively.
    "a writer of great originality"
    • the quality of being novel or unusual.
Goodness no, this isn’t the CABE, not that there’s anything wrong with the CABE (dig the place - furyus on there, too). Not trying to be uptight about origin at all. I knew this bike wasn’t 100% original when I purchased it, and my goal here is just to document what is and what isn’t, as best as I can tell. Like I wrote in my first post, this is more of a preservation than a “build,” so I guess the story is about what I’m finding along the way. Plus it makes up for not being able to build much.

I took my best shot at originality a build-off or three ago with deterioRat:

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New title for OddJob! Your Leniency!

furyus
 
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furyus

Pro Member
Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
So I got the seatpost clamp off the ovaled seat tube. Put the tube in a vise, gently, and managed to get the tube relatively round. Bonus points - The seat post slides right into the seat tube, so I didn’t muck that up getting the clamp off. Note all the lovely red primer - more evidence that the frame has never been repainted.

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The clamp and clamp hardware are very corroded. Note the top of the clamp bolt - deep corrosion.

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And the little guy that fell out of the clamp itself. Certainly a cozy little hidy-hole but not a lot of “traffic” going by - poor guy probably starved to death.

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So I took the clamp bolt, and some oil, and a wire brush, and way more valuable time than I should have, and managed to reveal the lettering on the head of the bolt.

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You can just make out the AS on the bolt, and that’s good enough for the flavor of this bike. All that lovely corrosion on the clamp is staying, too, albeit under a coat of oil. Here’s how the clamp bolt is supposed to look if you get uptight about restored and correct and all that stuff.

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To summarize thus far, I’m writing as much as I can about as little as possible, and calling it a build.

furyus
 
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Cool bike! I don't know that I would discount some of the parts as not original based off of the two pictures. Sometimes that schwinn chrome can polish out surprisingly good, especially it seems to on sprockets and some small parts like the bearing cups. The bike I'm working on has been sitting out in the elements for probably the past 40 years and if I wanted to I'm sure the sprocket would look almost new and it looks worse now than your before picture, but there's no real pitting. Also like your bike certain other parts are quite pitted.
 
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furyus

Pro Member
Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
Cool bike! I don't know that I would discount some of the parts as not original based off of the two pictures. Sometimes that schwinn chrome can polish out surprisingly good, especially it seems to on sprockets and some small parts like the bearing cups. The bike I'm working on has been sitting out in the elements for probably the past 40 years and if I wanted to I'm sure the sprocket would look almost new and it looks worse now than your before picture, but there's no real pitting. Also like your bike certain other parts are quite pitted.
You are absolutely correct, kram. Chrome from back in the day is surprisingly resilient. Here’s a pic of the outside of the lower steering head bearing cup:

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I’m leaving the outside of the cup as is, protected by a coat of oil. Here’s the inside of the same cup:

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And the same cup, after maybe ten minutes of cleaning with some penetrating oil and steel wool:

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Not showroom, but easily smooth enough to be serviceable, especially considering this bike might see five or ten miles a year realistically. I’ll be riding her, but I doubt I’ll be doing much touring. The discoloration isn’t rough, but rather chrome loss or stain. Properly greased, a bearing will live happily in here.

The previous owner might have cleaned the few shiny bits or replaced them; I’ll never know. I’m OK with it; all the parts are at least authentic Schwinn bits, and I’m fine just having a cool old bike. Considering I picked this up for the same price as the new Chicom Apple Krate, I got the steal of the century. The rust is a bonus.

furyus
 
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furyus

Pro Member
Jan 31, 2011
555
1,252
Leesburg, VA
Head badge detail. Cool little smudge of aluminum that never broke off from who knows how long ago:

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I wonder what caused these marks on the badge (the marks that look like = signs). Perhaps there was a light or newspaper basket attached to the bike at some point.

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Coda is 54 years old today according to her serial number. Happy birthday, Coda!

furyus
 

furyus

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Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
Hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas.

Couple of small details of interest I found on the frame, depending on if you’re easily amused like me.

Number stamped on the inside of the left dropout (the outside of the dropout has the serial number stamp).

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I’m sure someone somewhere knows the purpose of this number. The serial number indicates a build date of 12/21/1964, so obviously 12/24 would be after that. Is it a Julian calendar date - 122nd day of 1964 - perhaps when the dropout itself was made? Why date a dropout? Maybe an employee number? I flat don’t know, but there it is.

This pic is of the inside of the left chain stay.

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These marks run the length of both chainstays. I’ve never seen them before on any Schwinn I’ve owned, and I’ve owned a bunch. I’ll speculate it has something to do with the process of rolling the steel to create the chainstay. I’ll check my wife’s Slik-Chic, but her factory paint is super nice and super thick - probably won’t be evident.

Just another pic for the record of the chain guard. I’m not sure how long the ghost of the Sting-Ray decal will last. The last remaining drop of paint is the dot over the “I” in sting.

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furyus
 

furyus

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Jan 31, 2011
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Leesburg, VA
I’m preserving what’s left of the paint, and the rust, and the exposed steel, with my go-to lubricant, Gibbs Penetrating Oil. Great stuff. Dry to the touch after a few hours, protects everything from evil oxygen and “ages” metal and corrosion as you apply more over time. I know kram has done a super nice job shellacking his bike, and others have used clear coats on theirs, but I really dig how the Gibbs oil keeps everything looking natural, and only looks better with more applications. I’ve used it on my wife’s bike for six years now, and it gleams. Never have applied a single dollop of wax or polish to her bike.

Here’s where I started with the frame, fork and guard:

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After several sessions covering every square inch with Gibbs:

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She’ll probably get at least another couple of coats before she’s done, and then regular wipe-downs as long as the Lord allows me. It’s subtle in the pics, but she really has a much more vibrant color now.

Now I’ll get to the wheels.

furyus
 

furyus

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Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
Rear wheel that came with the bike. Most likely original. Communist tire for the time being.

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Old Bendix RB2 brake arm would be correct for a ‘65. Love the lettering.

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Rim will clean up, but will never be a museum piece. I’m good with that. This is some of the worst (or best, depending on your perspective) rust.

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Got whacked hard here at some point. No worries.

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Double-knurled and center-stamped, which is what should be on a ‘65. All I can find of the stamping is the S-2, however. Maybe find a trace of the Schwinn Tubular stamp when I clean the rest of it up. The knurling is a little sloppy compared to the crisp knurling I’ve seen on other wheels. Friday afternoon quittin’ time wheel, perhaps?

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Lots of crud on this hub. 28h, which is correct for ‘65. Bench tested good and the brake works, though. I really should completely disassemble and service it but one screw up and I’m afraid I’ll miss the deadline. It will be rideable as is, and I’ll tear it down in the near future. For now, just going to clean it up.

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furyus
 
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furyus

Pro Member
Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
So this....

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used to be this...

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Picture looks a lot better than the actual seat. What looks soft and cushy, albeit battle scarred, was actually brittle and crumbling. While turning the seat over and tipping it this way and that for closer inspection, debris would pour out of its many gashes. Not only that, the cover used to be white, but some genius spray painted it black, and again, the picture looks far better than reality. The inner pan (not the base pan) is rusted to death, as seen in the first pic. The seat is 80 percent destroyed.

This next pic shows the destroyed inner pan and the underside of the cover, evidence that it used to be white (still is actually, just smothered in black spray paint now).

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Debris. Stuff made my nose burn, too. Probably asbestos from 1964.

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And here’s what I’m left with right now. And I’m good with that right now. The rest went in the trash can. We’ll see what happens.

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furyus
 

furyus

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Jan 31, 2011
555
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Leesburg, VA
Pan looks structurally ok?
Very solid. Between lack of time to correctly reupholster and my inclination towards decline I'll probably be running a bare pan, just like I did with DeterioRat. One of my build goals is having no one ever utter the word "pristine" when describing my bike. "Prustine" would be OK, however.

furyus
 
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furyus

Pro Member
Jan 31, 2011
555
1,252
Leesburg, VA
Love a good Sting Ray thread. Guys who redo naner seats call those upper pans like that Corn Flakes. Looks like yours has gone beyond that into powder.

Seat looks like it may have been an original '64 Deluxe Sting Ray seat. Keep up the good work. Been a great thread to watch so far.
Thank you, Chad. I appreciate you swingin' by for a peek. I will definitely find some more deterioration to document for you.

furyus
 

furyus

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Jan 31, 2011
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Leesburg, VA
Significantly less than three weeks to go, better get a move on as my wife likes to say.

Rear wheel really deserves to be totally rebuilt, and maybe someday it will be, but not before February 1st. Hub is grindy, spokes are rusty and bent, and the rim is crusty - a winning combination!

Sprocket-side before...

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and after a little TLC...

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Brake side before...

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and after...

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Didn’t try to make it look new, just clean. Decades of grunge actually helped protect the metal. I’m pretty happy with how it came out considering how difficult it is to clean assembled.

I mentioned earlier that the rear wheel came with a communist tire - I stand corrected. Tire was actually made in Taiwan. The tube is a Carlisle (USA!) and I think it may have a date code of 1970, but I’m not certain.

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Not sure if tire and or tube will be on the bike at the finish line, but they’re both keepers.

furyus