1980 WORKSMAN KIK SHIFT

Rat Rod

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Bought this interesting Worksman from a friend over the weekend. There was some discussion about the bike on the Worksman Cycles Owners Facebook Group and Wayne Sosin, current President of Worksman said that it was a rare bike that they didn't make many of. An inventor from Louisiana had created the Kik Shift bike transmission in 1980 and Worksman took a chance on using it on a few of their bikes. He said that they even had a radio jingle back then to promote the new gearing system.


Well, unfortunately the nylon gear in my set up was a bit stripped and that kept it from shifting gears when you kicked back so I decided to convert the bike into a single speed for now since I really liked the frame and fork.

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Rat Rod

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Why does this exist?
Engineer invents foot-shift bike

NOV. 22, 1980

NEW ORLEANS -- Fernand Lapeyre had no interest in the bicycle business until he ran into repair problems with his granddaughter's multi-speed bike.

That was seven years ago.

On Monday, the 70-year-old New Orleans native travels to Atlanta to introduce the product of those seven years -- a new foot-shift transmission he says converts bicycles back to the rugged and reliable machines they used to be.

'The bicycle is basically too efficient a machine to let it get bogged down in repair shops,' Lapeyre said.

He said the derailleur shifting system, which became the bike rage of the 1960s, presented a repair challenge for even a graduate engineer like himself. Its delicate controls and cables required frequent adjustment.

'They sentenced bicycles to repair shops by making them so complicated,' he said. 'We used to repair our own. Now a lot of people get so frustrated they just give up on their bikes. That's a pity.'

He said his new Kik-Shift transmission, to be installed as standard equipment on a new line of bikes, will make bicycles safer in the snarl of modern traffic.

'We've put the shifting controls in the foot pedal so that the rider can keep his eyes of the road and both hands on the handlebar while shifting gears,' he said. 'That's where they belong.'

Lapeyre has built his transmission of metal alloy and enclosed it entirely in that material to make it more durable than exposed derailleur systems. And he pronounced his system much easier to maintain than traditional shifting devices: all it takes, he says, is a few drops of oil.

The 1932 Tulane University graduate is a member of an inventive family that holds more than 100 patents.

Lapeyre inventions range from an automatic shrimp peeler that revolutionized the Louisiana seafood industry to Digicourse, a marine magnetic compass system that has been used in America's Cup races.
 
Jan 21, 2009
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I've searched, can't find any other one than yours. 3 speed or 2? I'm also wondering if that rivet is the way it was made. I'll keep looking. This guy made an automatic shrimp peeler too?

The bike looks much better with the knobbies and Worksman heavy wheels.
 
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Is there only 1 spring loaded pin the bottom bracket? Maybe you could rotate the shifter bushing 180 deg and seat the undamaged grooves in the pin and restore action. Also they make Nylube a lubricant that does not attack and damage plastic that may help too.
Judging by the rust pattern on the drive sprocket and in the bottom bracket, that bike must of sat a long time and or gotten pretty wet. Are there any crank bearings in the kick shift or is the nylon the only bearing? Cool bike. :thumbsup:
 

cman

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Now you have 2 rare Worksmans? Fresh find observations over the years by state.

TX- Minty vintage BMX, rare Worksman
IA- Cheaper by the trailer
KS- Rear steer Colson tandems
MA- Spaceliners
 
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Sep 29, 2013
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There were some posts on here in the past about the kick shift. I'm thinking it was Mark sr. I can swear a couple guys had them.
that bike looks great now