The Hot Rod Higgins - New pics page 4

Dec 22, 2011
1,198
326
Dayton, Ohio
I present to you my RRBO7 entry, the Hot Rod Higgins. Being a RRBO rookie, I have to say it was a great experience. There are so many encouraging and top-notch builders on this site. I learned a lot and I like to think I made a few friends along the way. I am already looking forward to next year.

My build thread can be found here.

viewtopic.php?f=67&t=56395&p=533277#p533277

I had originally planned to use a ’36 CWC frame for the buildoff, but the 24X3 wouldn’t fit without frame modification. I really didn’t want to cut up a cool old frame, so I went with the Higgins. To keep costs down, I spent about 6 months scrounging swap meets, CL and ebay looking for cool parts to buy/sell/trade. I bought a complete ’51 Higgins. I sold the skip tooth, I sold the front fender, I sold the rear rack, I sold the bars, crank, etc until I literally had nothing in the frame. I tried to keep my costs as low as possible.

My idea of a rat bike should be cheap, stylish and most importantly, it should be a good rider. Bikes are meant to be ridden. I can honestly say that this bike is one of the nicest riding cruisers I have ever ridden. The springer seat, springer front end and big fat tires make for a seriously sweet ride. The headlight, taillight, speedo and horn are all fully functional. You could jump on this bike and ride it anywhere, anytime. The overall design was inspired by the hot rod scene from the late 60s/ early 70s. I wanted something that is stripped down with a low profile but tons of flash and style. The name “Grumpy’s Speed Shop” on the tank is a salute to drag racing legend Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins who passed away this past spring. Along with my dad and Evel Knievel, Grumpy Jenkins was one of my childhood heroes.

I really like nice patina on a rat bike. My frame, fork, skirts and tank all came from different bikes, so in an effort to not look like the Partridge Family school bus, I opted to shoot everything with flat black rattlecan primer. The pinstriping was done by Brian Tomlinson. I originally wanted the traditional red/white/silver striping on flat black paint and after talking to Brian, we decided to be a little different and go with sublime green, orange and blue. The chrome was toast on my springer, so to save money I painted the “chrome” with silver paint.

The parts breakdown:



Frame – 1951 Higgins
Fork – Higgins X-53
Tank – Higgins (year unknown)
Fender – Chopped ’51 Higgins
Skirts – Higgins girls bike
Seat – Long Spring from ’36 CWC
Crank/Sprocket – Schwinn
Wheels – Wheelmaster 12ga spokes
Tires – Felt Thickbrick 24X3
Handlebars – Nirve Switchblade
Stem – BMX
Headlight – Chevy fog lamp with AAA LED conversion
Tail Light – Unknown LED light. Rewired using AAA LED
Grips – Black/Aluminum eBay special
Pinstriping – Brian Tomlinson (Dayton, Ohio)

Now, on with the pics…

Before


After





































 
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Reactions: Joe Conde

yoothgeye

I build stuff.
Moderator
Jul 1, 2010
7,991
1,094
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Roanoke Rapids, NC
Re: The Hot Rod Higgins

I'll trade you my bike for it... please! Awesome bike.

About that '36 you almost built, I just realized that last year I built a '76, this year I built a '56, so next year I need to build a '36... :D The year after that will be really hard. :eek:
 
May 14, 2008
1,592
537
63
houston,tex.
Re: The Hot Rod Higgins

the bike really captures the nostalgic hot rod look perfectly! 8) great choice of parts and graphics tie it all together too.love it!
 
Sep 13, 2006
1,232
28
Maine USA
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Re: The Hot Rod Higgins

yoothgeye said:
I'll trade you my bike for it... please! Awesome bike.

About that '36 you almost built, I just realized that last year I built a '76, this year I built a '56, so next year I need to build a '36... :D The year after that will be really hard. :eek:
If you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans for the future.... :lol:
 
Dec 22, 2011
1,198
326
Dayton, Ohio
Re: The Hot Rod Higgins

Thanks guys....I am glad you like it. I couldn't be happier with the build. I took it out for a shakedown run today. I put about 5 miles on it total and it rode well. Rusty513 and I decided to chase down some guys in spandex this afternoon. We got the bikes up to close to 20mph. He was on his cool Huffy and I was on the Higgins. There was a rattle here and there, but nothing major. I brought it home and got it all dialed in and took it out for another test run.

The bike was a blast to build. I had a tougher time deciding what to leave off the bike than what to include. I am always out at swaps and flea markets looking for interesting and cool parts. I had a cool horn, a brass oil tank and a bunch of other things that just didn't "fit" the theme of the bike.

Thanks again for all the nice words on the build. It is crazy when you take a pile of rusty parts and put something together that people actually like.
 
Dec 22, 2011
1,198
326
Dayton, Ohio
Re: The Hot Rod Higgins

yoothgeye said:
I'll trade you my bike for it... please! Awesome bike.

About that '36 you almost built, I just realized that last year I built a '76, this year I built a '56, so next year I need to build a '36... :D The year after that will be really hard. :eek:
I'll dig it out and shoot a pic of it sometime....it is a sweet old frame....