Junkyard Worksman

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Figured it was time to do a little building tonight after work...

I started here with one of the famous Chuckz Frames:
ace4dc9f-1492-491b-b3ab-6b3a1ef2cb24_zpseb6kguyu.jpg


It's the INB model. (Industrial News Boy for those in the dark, like me..) Been used somewhere in Houston industry, got a wee bit of surface rust but it's straight and solid as can be.. I don't really like the chainguard mounts but I do have a saw and grinder..) Lots of cool decals and patina like crazy...(That's rust and scrapes for those in the dark, like me..lol)
IMG_0431_zpsjz7ic9f9.jpg


I've been sourcing free parts for it her and there out of my stash of junk bike parts I've accumulated this summer.. I was in for a surprise when I went to install may favorite set of mountain bike bars and stem... What's this?? The fork isn't big enough?? OOPS! After a day or two of thinking, I remembered I had bought a set of Schwinn drop bars to get the brake levers from it for my buddy's Trek.. (Never did install them, he ended up with a single speed rat I put together and now the Trek is up for sale..)and it looked like they had the smaller diameter stem on them. I was after a substantial rise, but no luck with the Schwinn stem.. (22.x mmm vs 21.1mm on the diameter, for those who didn't know, like me..)

So.....I thought I'd use a set of BMX style bars to get the same effect... I'll let you guys guess what bike these blue beauties came off...and they actually fit the nice solid although short Schwinn stem.


On to the seat....I figured, just pop in a nice seat from my collection of seats with seatposts already mounted....What's this??? The seat tube isn't big enough?????Darn... Off to RRB to research some more...A few hours later,between RRB and the online Worksman parts list, I figured out that they use a 7/8 seatpost, and I didn't have any. Hmmm.. Do I have a solid piece of 7/8 rod, since it seemed everyone was bending their INB seatposts.. Looked in the scrap pile, looked in my truck box, and after another look down cellar I found a piece of 7/8 od tubing ....err ummm ...actually galvanized water pipe. and it fit!! Even jammed it almost all the way to the bottom bracket and took out a small ding in the seat tube. Next, a post clamp..

I thought maybe I'd have trouble finding the right size clamp for the seatpost, after all I didn't have any 7/8 stuff anywhere. I looked in my pile of leftover junk from DJ's Dilemma, and found this beauty.. Add a little shim behind it, replace the fixed bolt with a quick release and I have a solid seat!! (By the way it is actually the top inch of seatpost tube from a Spiderman bike...)
IMG_0572_zps3bpabbux.jpg


Now to find wheels and tires.. I'd already mocked it up in the attic (only special bikes get to stay in the attic) and decided a whitewall cruiser tire was no good and I wanted knarly tires instead. I also wanted to go for alloy rims and save a little weight, always a good thing if you can do it without sacrificing strength.. For the front, a Schwinn Sidewinder I had parted yielded its QR alloy rim on a nice large hub. It might donate its rear rim as well later, but I did grab the rear tire. I pulled the cruiser tire off the CB rim and discovered this...
38ad4a58-281e-42bf-9ec0-9e74a069517a_zpsytlwhojk.jpg

Now that's rat rod style to an extreme I don't want to use.. so I tossed the rim strip.

While I had the tire off, I mounted the wheel in the Worksman frame and used my half penny truing gauge to get the wheel a little less wobbly.. The wheel had been curbed hard at one point and the rim was a bit ....trashed. After a little adjustable wrench body work to the worst of the damage and a few spokes got tightened..it is within 1/8 inch either way so I left it. It's gonna get replaced in the future anyway. Here's the high dollar paper clip truing gauge in action:
IMG_0570_zpsqkmd1amt.jpg


You can't quite see the rat style brake arm strap (More plumbing stuff) that works for now. Don't look too close at that chain, I didn't...

I wanted a small front sprocket, and a one piece crank would be the easy and cheap way out...but the only one piecers I had were from kids bikes and my Wee Ride trail a bike. The Wee Ride had the longest crank arms but they still are too short. I'll have to search the other storage pile and find a larger one later, but I needed something to pedal so this was it. At least the sprocket wasn't too awful big.

Here's the end result after a couple of hours digging around and assembling:
2485f95b-0594-4590-b308-493e44d34660_zpszoc5sc27.jpg

and a better shot from the side:
IMG_0574_zpsbweokjfo.jpg


About that chain.. I thought I had pulled the chain off the Firestone Super cruiser for this bike... it had the chain with the bright side plates and black rollers and inner plates, right? It was cool that the chain was exactly the right length too, and all I had to do was push in the pin with my chain breaker (Park chain breaker by the way, only way to fly for me.) and it was just the right length and well within adjustment range. I had the bike all together on its back and did the standard spin the pedals thing -- what's this?? The chain doesn't fit?? It makes funny noises and doesn't want to come off the front sprocket on its way to the back???? Dang. it wasn't the Super Cruiser chain after all. Turns out it was off the Sidewinder. You know, a multispeed chain just doesn't work too well on a single speed coaster brake bike. For now it stays, but tomorrow I find the correct width chain.


Well, it's time to pump the tires up harder and go for a test drive in the parking lot... I can already tell the gearing is set up for tremendously high speeds so I'll have to be careful and not go over the wall. I'll report back later, if I survive.
 
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Well, I managed to outrun the cops and made it home in a huge cloud of dust kicked up by the gnarly tires...... (not really, the cops were a figment of my imagination..) and I can now give the bike a grade...

It's a home run! Not as heavy feeling as I had feared a Worksman could be... It felt much lighter to pedal than my Schwinn Mesa Runner which is another tank of a bike. Even with the small crank arms it was pretty easy pedaling on the flat and FAST. I haven't climbed any hills yet and most likely it will be a bit tough until I get the right size crank in there. I had to raise the seat up a bit more (especially since the pedals didn't go as low as I am used to) but it rides and corners pretty nice. Not bad for a pile of junk parts!

If I had to sum it up....It's nothing fancy, just all BIKE. No shifters, no hand brakes, no cables, pure and simple bike. (Although it was weird not to have a front brake on a non-cruiser). Best $70 I have spent on a bike yet.

Thank's Chuck!
 
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I took it out for my usual 8 AM bike ride.. The Mesa Runner has been my main ride but I take any bike I have worked on for a shake down cruise on the same route.. And my impressions after riding in the daylight.


Not as fast as it seemed in the dark. Pedaled surprisingly easy up the big hill I have on my route. Felt really solid jumping off curbs. I had to raise the seat even more, the larger frame may have been a better fit, but this makes for a lower center of gravity and corners sharply well.

It felt lighter than most of my riders...which is strange to say about a Worksman.

I'm lovin' it anyhow!
 
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Did a bit of wrenching Sunday. I decided it was high time for a big boy crankset and sprocket, so I pulled the Cranbrook setup off my old ladies Firestone Cruiser...and put the stock skiptooth stuff back on it , since I had picked up a decent skiptooth wheelset for it at Howes Cave.. A few hiccups with that job but it now is a rolling all period bike and might be for sale soon. It's the only bike I have ever had where you had to knock a bearing cup out to install the crank, and believe me, I tried every way there was and a few more. The center portion of the stocker is too thick to allow it in, the thinner Cranbrook one went right in and out but the Firestone one wouldn't.. It was the same way to pull it , now that I think about it. Here's the Firestone, just need to find the orig seatpost before it gets sold..
IMG_0595_zpsuyks1ibp.jpg



The vintage work out of the way , and my only crankset of an appropriate size freed up, it was time to get cracking on the Worksman. It was a lot simpler to swap out the cranks than the oldie... in a few minutes I was ready to build a chain from the two short one I had... I still ended up with the axle a bit farther out in the dropouts than I like but it worked.

Since I normally wear jeans or sweatpants on my morning rides, I wanted to slap a chainguard on too.. I had a basic chainguard from the Spideybike, and with some ill fitting spare bolts I had it mounted.. I still had time to go to the Niskayuna bike path for my usual Sunday long ride. Its a nice rails to trails path that is mostly flat and paved fairly smoothly with very few hills... a perfect place for a shakedown ride. I kept the wrenches and screwdrivers in my pockets and went off for a ride.

With the larger sprocket, it was a joy to pedal.. I think I could still go a little larger in front or smaller on the rear..The small crank from the wee ride was fast in the parking lot but too slow for bike paths and this setup was at lease acceptable. I went as fast as I could pedal for a while, listening for odd noises, and yes, there were some. I couldn't figure out whether I had a stiff spot in my chain or a rough spot in the Falcon hub.. So the bike showed me.

About a hundred feet before a downhill and back up a short steep grade to cross a highway, the Worksman tossed its chain. WTH?? I stuck it back on and spun the crank, and it tossed it again!
Hmm, must be too loose. Tightened the chain and it seemed fine.. but that back wheel was a bit wiggly. Took it down and up the hills and it kept the chain on. But there was still noise. I looked closer and actually took the time to see how much play there was in the bearings...and I found out why it tossed the chain. Well the chain was staying on, so I gently pedaled the two miles back to the parking area hoping it would stay together long enough, then pulled the rear wheel and readjusted the bearings....I went as tight as I dared, and it sure helped that cog to not wobble all over the place! I'll have to retighten it later and torque the locknuts, no cone wrench in my pocket.

The rest of the ride was uneventful, I found out I couldn't keep up with a modern road bike. but off roading in the grass to avoid unsteady children on the path was easy and pretty smooth.
The coaster axle has been bent for a while now, so I'll need to get an axle kit or just get a new hub and alloy rim at some point so it will be smoother pedaling. But that will have to wait for the klunker build off, for now I'm just gonna enjoy it as is..

IMG_0594_zps1zaawrsc.jpg
 
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