1951 CWC Roadmaster

Discussion in 'BUILDS' started by Starnger, Jan 15, 2020.

  1. Starnger

    Starnger

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    Hello everyone!
    I have long waited for it and it happened!
    Just bought this 51 CWC frame from ebay, happy to finally join the club! It is going to be a fun project!

    IMG_4763.jpg

    As much as i wish to restore it to original condition, i'd have to compromise often because of parts availability. I live in Europe, and paying 50 bucks delivery and another 25 customs for each original nut and screw would neither be possible nor rational. But i am trying to keep it close to original look, using original or reproduction parts when possible.

    I have already ordered persons saddle, original roadmaster chain guard and head badge, and hopefully can also get the tank. Bought 2008 Schwinn Debutante for reproduction blade forks, truss rods and dog leg cranks, also ordered Electra twister sprocket, a similar shape to original one but 44 teeth. I'm pretty excited about it, so i already have made few mock-ups for the paint scheme and stuff.
    I will keep you guys updated on that one!
     
  2. us56456712

    us56456712

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    It might be older than 1951 as the drops are fitted for chain tugs. Most American bicycle manufactures dropped this type of drop after WWII. I'm no expert put have owned several CWC bicycle, some with the tugs and some without but I don't know the age. The one I currently have has tugs and originally had a skip tooth drive, which I converted to half inch pitch. I also rebuilt a 1938 girls CWC for my daughter using a cheap Walmart bicycle as a parts donor. 0-1.jpeg 0-2.jpeg
     
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  3. Starnger

    Starnger

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    From what i learned online, my frame number starts with H and ends with ACw, and that makes it summer 1951. It is not clear on the picture, i still need to brush the dirt, rust and paint off.
    IMG_4766.JPG

    As far as i am aware, those frames kept chain tugs in the drop outs throughout whole production, unlike kickstand mounts. The roadmasters changed the dropout shape in 1953/1954, few years after being bought by AMF.
    Here is a pic of 1953 and 1954 bikes.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Seems that they have changed the seat post diameter at the same time.
     
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  4. us56456712

    us56456712

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    Gosh, I didn't know that. I assumed that the girls bike I rebuilt for my Daughter was a 1938 because the number on the bottom bracket ended in 38. Looks like it is more complicated than I assumed.
     
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  5. Starnger

    Starnger

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    My guess your girls bike is roughly same period as mine. No kickstand holes on dropouts make it post-war, flat seat post clamp makes it late 40's early 50's.
    Here is the donor i bought:
    [​IMG]
    Whats cool about it: dog leg crank, nice 40's style hearts Schwinn sprocket, blade fork, truss rods (wide ones, not Electra style reproduction everyone has :D). As a bonus i have a nice stem and 4 speed nexus wheel set for my other builds.
    Whats uncool about it: crank is 165mm (shortest i can ride without pain in my knees, but still too short), the sprocket is 46 teeth (not 52 like older bikes), and the awesome lamp on the front is actually made of plastic! I was looking forward for this lamp so much, it is so different from repop torpedo lamps we got here. And such a bummer, it sounds cheap when you hit it :) From the distance it looks nice, apart from the ring around the lens, where yellowish plastic is visible under the chrome-ish coating.
    Then what was surprising for me is that fork is 1-1/8 inch! Did not expect the frame to be made of aluminium, i should have known that most modern alu cruisers use 1-1/8. But in the end it is actually a good thing, since the head tube on CWC is 32,5mm, so it takes EC33 head sets, that are very difficult to find in Europe (easiest way to get one is to buy an old BMX just for the headset). Instead i can perform the trick with cutting 1-1/8 inch bearing cups on lathe, from 34mm down to 32,5, so then i won't ever have to worry about spare parts for the head set. Yes, it won't look original then, but it is the easiest and still quite elegant solution i have found.
     
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  6. us56456712

    us56456712

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    Is there enough meat on the cups to turn them down? If so, it's a good idea. Bearing cups are hardened and I usually have to grind them down with a hand held grinder as they are so hard. I have an old 1930s total rat that I just tack welded loose fitting bearing cups into the head tube, let the next guy curse the idiot that did this. The BB was also weird so I also tack welded slightly smaller ones in there. Works great. A grinder and hack saw will remove all the jury-rigged fixes. these old bikes always take way more work than they should to to get the going again. It should be ar real nice bike when it's done.
     
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  7. Starnger

    Starnger

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    There is. Saw this online once, done that before, works great. Actually, already prepared the cups for this bike today too :)

    Also i have removed some paint, appears to be black originally, then painted bright green really a while ago, and then the color faded to what we see on the surface. My guess is that it means, originally it was Roadmaster Luxury Liner. That's the only black one from 1951 i could find online.
    IMG_4775.JPG

    The frame number became visible and readable under the layers of dirt, paint and rust. My bike is H46869 ACw.
    IMG_4774.JPG
     
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  8. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Starnger nailed it...tugs up to ~'53...AMF changed the drop out.
     
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  9. horsefarmer

    horsefarmer

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    [​IMG]
    Ya gotta do what ya gotta do. :grin:
     
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  10. Starnger

    Starnger

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    The paint is almost cleaned up. I think the bike would still need gentle media-blasting before painting, but still i wanted to brush it first to make sure it has no rusty or otherwise bad spots. It is actually in a great shape for its age, and i found no serious flaws.
    IMG_4777.jpg
    Then i have straitened the bent on the fender mounting plate. It is still not ideal, but almost, so works for me :D
    IMG_4778.JPG

    Here are the headset cups after being cut next to original ones i took off the frame. You can see by the color one of them got pretty hot while turning. Hardened steel is not easy to work with on the lathe we have at school.
    IMG_4779.jpg
    Another cool thing is i won the tank on ebay today, so makes my parts wish list almost complete!
    s-l1600.jpg
    Now i only want to get a rear reflector or a cool rear lamp, original delta light for the front if possible, but i actually have a smaller torpedo style delta on the way, so it is not ultimately necessary. Maybe some fenders, but considering the prices for original ones it is unlikely i would have them :D It is around 80 bucks only for delivery!

    What i absolutely do need to make or get are the tensioning bolts and the seat post. I am thinking of making a post myself out of 16mm stainless steel rod, so i won't have to worry about it getting rusty. I'd only need to cut it down to 15,8mm. Same goes for the bolts, i was thinking to find normal stainless bolts and cut them to look like originals. But then i understood, the bolts used in CWC are most likely not our normal M6 bolts sold on every corner here, i guess they might have some weird imperial thread size. Do you guys know?
     
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  11. Dr. Tankenstein

    Dr. Tankenstein

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    I made some out of brass screws for my Huffman.
    By using brass, they won’t rust and considering they are structural, I felt OK using them.
    The ones on my CWC were frozen, sonI let them in there! Hahahahaha!




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  12. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    I think they are #12 - 24tpi...I'm trying to think where my most accessible CWC is to verify...and I'm not sure :giggle:.

    I can probably did something up tomorrow to verify if needed.
     
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  13. Starnger

    Starnger

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    Found ones on ebay, says it is 1/4 x 20tpi.
    If this size is correct, then i can quite possibly acquire them locally.
     
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  14. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    I ran out of time this morning...but, I grabbed a 1/4"-20 cap screw from work and I have an equivalent era CWC frame at home. As a quick way to rule out a #12 -24...take a 5mm drill (or dowel pin, gage pin, etc) and see if you can slide it into the hole. If it slides in, it isn't a #12-24...if it does slide in, it's probably a 1/4"-20 (or 24, or 28, or ??? :grin:)...the sloppier the fit, the more threads.
     
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  15. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Confirmed on an equivalent era CWC frame...1/4” - 20 :thumbsup:.
     
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  16. us56456712

    us56456712

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    Any 1/4 x 20tip that you buy and turn down the ends will just bend as they are not hardened. When we were kids we used 1/4 inch thumb bolts. We took the axle washer on the rear hub and sawed it flat so it was sort of like a "D". The 1/4 x 20tpi bolt tightened against the flat part of the "D" and moved the axle back. Because it was a full thickness bolt it didn't bend, but then we were 70 pound kids. You would probably need a robust washer and it might work for adults.
     
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  17. Starnger

    Starnger

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    I have ordered stainless steel bolts in that size, i guess it should be somewhat harder then normal steel. But let's see what results i can get. Thanks for sharing your experience, would be valuable!
     
  18. us56456712

    us56456712

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    I thought of using stainless but could not find any bolts in size 12. I tried to find grade 5 or 8 bolts but could not find any in the appropriate size. I even tried hardening steel bolts with heat. I would be interested to see how the stainless works. Some of my real tug bolts on my old bikes were bent when I got the bikes.
     
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  19. RustyGold

    RustyGold

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    Stainless are rated at the equivalent of grade 5 bolt/screw...grade 8 are about 20% stronger.
     
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  20. Starnger

    Starnger

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    Got some parts delivered!
    First a cool Persons saddle. It would need some cleanup, but condition is good! It is the first time i am having one in my hands, old American saddles are not quite popular here, but i love the way it is designed! How service friendly it is on a contrary to modern saddles built to be thrown away after a while.
    IMG_4781.jpg
    IMG_4782.JPG

    Then another saddle, maker unknown. This one is more beaten up, but has original 5/8 clamp and springs here feel softer then ones on Persons. I don't yet know what am i going to do with them, but cleanup comes first for sure.
    IMG_4786.jpg
    IMG_4787.jpg

    And here is original Delta light! Very cool one! And still works! Would use cleanup and new paint job to refresh the chipping away chrome.
    IMG_4784.jpg
    IMG_4785.JPG
     

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