Jun 16, 2008
Kansas City, MO
Apparently third time's a charm for me to actually finish a build off, and it's been a blast. Three months sounds like such a long time to build a bike, from parts or from scratch, but it's amazing how quickly the time ticks away. If you’ve followed my original build thread you know that this bike is a tribute to my Dad who passed one year ago last May. This is a man who even in the final throes of cancer came bounding out of the house to see his “newest” 1977 ElCamino less than one week before he died. I’m stoked with how my build turned out; it's exactly how I envisioned it. More than that I’m grateful for the opportunity I had to share my plan and the reasons behind it with my Dad before he was gone.

So without further ado, here is HellCamino.

HellCamino uses parts from Schwinn, Shelby, Columbia, JC Higgins, and Monark, as well as aftermarket parts new and old that I attempted to fit together in a way that looked stock. Everything but the rear fender and rack are original paint. Thrown into the challenge was creating something that I, at 6’2”, could actually ride for more than a block. A comfortable riding position and gearing were a must. I don’t know how many miles I covered during my final photo shoot, but the bike rode comfortably and performed flawlessly.

Here's the breakdown:
1955 Schwinn Hornet straightbar frame
BF Goodrich Schwinn headbadge
Chrome steel triple tree fork, custom fit
Schwinn stem
27" width, 3" rise chrome handlebar
Schwinn chubby grips
Schwinn extra-long seatpost
Troxel long spring saddle
Greenfield kickstand

Shelby front fender with original braces
Schwinn straightbar tank
• Working Delta tank horn​
Schwinn Starlet chainguard
• Original design "HellCamino" vinyl decal
• Repop Schwinn chainguard decal​
Monark rear fender
• Shelby fender brace
• Original tombstone reflector with chrome housing​
JC Higgins Colorflow rack with reflector and bezel

Custom shifter
• HBBC suicide shifter mount
• Shimano Inter8 grip shifter
• PVC cap with threaded rod and stainless steel tubing
• Brodie knob with GMC artwork​
Front Wheel
• Nirve hub
• 26" double-walled aluminum rim
• Custom length axle
• Resist “Nomad” 26x2.25 front tire
• Chrome acorn lug nuts​
Rear Wheel
• Shimano Nexus Inter8 hub
• 24” Double-walled 57mm aluminum rim
• Black DTSwiss straight guage spokes and brass nipples
• Maxxis “Hookworm” 24x2.5 tire
• Chrome acorn lug nuts​
Schwinn crank
Columbia chain ring
Magna Teardrop pedals
• Repop reflectors​
SRAM chain

Working Fako twin headlights with aftermarket light internals and switches
• Delta twin mounting bracket​
Columbia fender mount headlight
"FFTYFV" custom bicycle license plate

Here's a link to the build:

My thanks to everyone for the kind words and encouragement throughout the build. It’s been great to see everyone else’s progress and final results; there are some amazing rides out there. Congrats to all who entered and good luck to all who finished!
Jun 16, 2008
Kansas City, MO
I love that blue, great looking bike!
Thanks, Leghorn! I had a good time finding parts that coordinated with the build, but the crown jewel was the original paint Spitfire blue straightbar frame. I had never even seen one and when it popped up on eBay about a year ago, I thought for sure it was a 24" frame. It's the only bike I've ever arranged shipping for as the seller was doing a local pickup only and was somewhere on the East coast. I know anything can be repainted, but I have a soft spot for original paint, and the Schwinn stuff really stands the test of time.
The cream really rises to the top with this one! Just so well put together....from top to bottom, front to back! Nice work!
Thanks brother! We were definitely on the same page with the handlebars. I like the apes, but had to follow my gut. It rides like a beast!
Can I ride it? Please . . . please . . .
Sure, but you'll have to drag me off of it first! :D
This has been a favorite of mine this year, LOVE it!
That means a lot, Dr. T! Like every year, there are some amazing builders and bikes. I just wanted to have fun and build the bike I wanted. Mission accomplished!
What an awesome bike!
Thanks bro!
SUch an awesome mix of the perfect parts!
Definitely one of my faves this year!
From the master of mixing parts himself! Thanks KF!
I'm in love, Schwinn's are just awesome bike's
I was never a Schwinn guy and now the only balloon tire bikes I have left are two Spitfire's and a Hornet. They really made great bikes!
Super clean build, love this!
Thanks brO-gre!
Love the chunky look of this bike. Looks like a lot of fun to ride too... :thumbsup:
Thanks kingsting! I love me some curves. It's no lightweight, but the 8-speed hub makes it a blast to ride. Fifth gear seems to be the sweetspot so I've still got plenty for climbing and a few for power on the downhills.
Very cool! Great build!
Thanks Luke!
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May 4, 2015
Atlantic Beach, FL
I absolutely love this build for what it represents, blend of new and current components, and craftsmanship. And a little bit of my love for El Camino's (72' LS-6, 77' Sprint). Your Dad would be proud!
Apr 20, 2009
Fairfax, VA
Nice! :113: Coincidently, I used to have a custom 80's El Camino with pretty much the same color scheme as your sweet awesome Schwinn.
Jun 16, 2008
Kansas City, MO
I absolutely love this build for what it represents, blend of new and current components, and craftsmanship. And a little bit of my love for El Camino's (72' LS-6, 77' Sprint). Your Dad would be proud!
Thanks Rickshaw! My Dad was always steadfast in his love for the ElCaminos too. The daul headlights are a subtle nod to most models throughout the years. My dad had two '77s and we had just sold his '86 (to fund the purchase of the second '77). Love the Sprint's too!
A great build,has come together in just the right way...
Thanks Miss Funk! I have a lot of respect for your builds. I don't have much in the way of fabrication skills, but I know what I like. I grew up at car shows with my Dad and have an immense appreciation for the cars and trucks from the '50s. They just flow!
Nice! :113: Coincidently, I used to have a custom 80's El Camino with pretty much the same color scheme as your sweet awesome Schwinn.
Thanks deorman! As mentioned in my thread the blue has a major significance to me. The factory red and white '77 was my Dad's dream car. The '59s are my personal favorite, but keeping his trumps all.
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Apr 14, 2015
Great tribute , and really cool bike looks like it came right out of the box every thing fits like it was meant to be ..

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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