Long Shot, The back alley bomber.

I don't know what happened, but a month ago I thought I had missed the deadline for the build off. Realizing today that it is in fact August right now and not last month I'm still in the game!!!

I picked this bike up at the local bike salvage (Bicas) and it was hideous. It was krylon purple with black flames over the original paint. I have no idea what it is and I could use some help identifying it. Someone had really done a number to this bike and I'm not sure if its vintage or a modern repro. Once I was down to bare metal I was able to see that all the joints were brazed, not welded. The V brake mounts ARE welded, (and kinda sloppy) which leads me to believe someone added them to "update" the bike. After stripping most of the bad spray job off I know that the original paint was a reddish color. Also, the bicycle butcher drilled holes through the frame to run the brake cables through. I don't know how strong it is going to be so I'm going to gusset everything. If anyone can help identify this thing I would be very grateful.

90% stripped

Tank Louvers

Bad weld on the V brake cable mount.

V brake peg mount.

If you haven't guessed from the title. This bike is going WWII aircraft style. I have a rivet gun and a drill...... it's going to get messy.
Apr 22, 2008
the tank is a prewar Colson. pretty valuable if I'm not mistaken. don't cut it up you'll regret it later. I'm not an expert on Colson but the bike may be correct for the tank at which point you have a fairly valuable Colson Bike from the '30's. warning though the parts for it aren't gonna be cheap! :shock: I'll ask someone and see if I can get you more info. I just looked through my catalogs and it is between my 1936 catalog and my 1940 catalog, most likely 1938-39.
Nov 28, 2006
No way are those the original dropouts. My two cents would be to take it to a framebuilder to get all that nasty modern stuff removed and old style dropouts added - just to do that beauty justice.
somebody made some serious upgrades to that bike to make a more practical rider. those are not v-brakes, they're center pull brakes, much better than coaster brakes, and a deralleur mount for multi speed, its like someone tried to make an old school/new school hybrid, id build it up that way w/ multi speeds and better brakes. are there any other mods to the frame? brake bosses on the forks? if previous posts are correct then the tank may be collectible but is the frame collectible with all of those mods? i think that bike is awesome, the only thing that keeps me from uisng an old tank bike for any more than cruising is that they are just not practicle for commuting...in my opinion. i apologize now if i offended anyone!
fast eddie outty
Apr 22, 2008
that is the rare tank so the frame it fits cant be an easy find. is it worth fixing?you would have to find a donor frame for the correct dropouts etc. and of course getting rid of the other modern additions. let me check with someone and find out the relative value of this frame compared to other stuff and I'll get back to you guys. I think it may be cheaper and easier to replace the frame than fix it, at which point all you have of the bike is the tank. I'll ask about the value of the tank while I'm at it.
Scott 8)
Cool. I have a little ratfink on my shoulder telling me to cut it and rat it out, tank and all. I may defile an old piece of americana, but the kustom builder inside me will be satisfied. There's no way I'd sit on a tank until I could find the correct frame. It would drive me nuts.
Apr 22, 2008
I just got off the phone with one of the biggest collectors in the hobby, and he said the tank should be worth around $150.00 the frame he felt wasn't worth fixing. he thought he might have one if you want him to look. his advice was make it a rat rod but don't cut the tank so that if you want you can sell it later for enough to get your next project.
Scott 8)
Feb 14, 2008
dude, get it on. man your going to make alot of purist unhappy. lol. your bike, do what ya want. bomber ready for take off. luv the decal. the rivets will be a flyin.lol

Outlaw 8)

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