1971 Huffy Twin Stick Mag Wheel

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A new client reached out and wanted his very rare 1971 Huffy Rail Twin Stick Mag Wheel freshened up, take care of some issues, and add some goodies.

Huffy only built this bike for 1 year, and for many collectors this is a Hoky Grail bike. Much rarer than a Schwinn Krate. Not as popular by the masses, but genuinely appreciated by those who understand.
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It looks good in this pic, but the biggest issue you can’t see. A boy that owned it years ago didn’t know how to lift it over curbs, or at least slow down, so both the front and rear rims are bent flat.
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I’m unboxing it… so here we go.
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This wheel gets me excited!
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Here you can see the damage. The rim crushed in and impacted the plastic mag cracking it and chipping away a piece of the edge.
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So let’s see what this wheel is made of. I’ve only heard of these wheels. I’ve never seen or touched one. So let’s figure this out…

This grease is a year older than I am!
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Axle is out. Freewheel is off. Now, how do I get the mag covers off?

I think these six Allen bolts on both ends are a start. Looks like the bolt into the hub.
Now I see these six smooth button head rods that are riveted on the other end!
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Well crap. I’m going to have to drill those out.
But first, the hub.
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So here’s the solved mystery:
They used a solid rim with no spoke holes.
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They have a hub flange cover that’s bolted to the hub flange, and welded to that cover are 6 rods.
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Maybe they are more like fan blades. They are welded to the rim.
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So next I’m going to drill out those rods and see what happens. Stay tuned!
 
There a boat load of youtube videos on plastic welding and repair. I got a cheap plastic welder that uses small steel wires as reinforcement to fix a very expensive bike rack part that is unobtainable. Just the gadget for that big crack in that mag cover. Some methods use soldering irons with the tips replaced with knife blades or cut off nails. No shortage of plastic junk to practice on. I see some of vids use a bit of aluminum foil tape as a backer (not duct tape!) to hold the heat and keep the one side smooth. Looks like those mag covers were painted so a respray can hide the scratches and repairs. There are vids on using super glue with a powdered filler for large holes, again with the foil tape as a backer.

So the rear wheel is supported only by the molded plastic mag? if you can find a better (round) rim with the same profile, perhaps it would match up to the mag and maybe the spoke holes wouldn't show. I'd tell the owner this bike is for show only.
 
Yes, it's painted, so I was thinking an epoxy bond, then filler and smoothing, then paint.

The wheel isn't supported by the plastic mag at all. That is only a cover. Under the mag are 6 metal spokes that are welded to the center hub cover and welded to the rim. I'll show pictures when I get the plastic mag wheel off. My current plan is to replace the rim. It'll have spoke holes, but I may fill them since the rim will be welded, and will need new chrome regardless.

The goal is to make the bike a rider. The owner really wants to ride it at parades and car shows and such. When it gets it's drag fork, that will be a chore. But it's all about the look!
 
I got the plastic covers off. Unfortunately, the they were not built for maintenance. Meaning, once installed, they weren’t designed to come off again.
At each mag spoke there is a hook-clip, and a “loop” next to it. The clip from the opposite cover clicks into the loop. There was no way to reach the clip to pry it out from underneath the loop, so the result is a lot of loops snapped off. With the pressures involved, I don’t think epoxying the loops would do any good because they’d snap off on installation. So I’m going to have to figure out a permanent epoxy answer.

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Next I need to get to my stash and see if I have a replacement rim.
 
This is gonna be an interesting build! My local co-op keeps one of these rim straighteners around, but I'm first to admit it isn't the easiest tool to use.

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That mag makes me miss my Screamer 2 even more.
 
I got the plastic covers off. Unfortunately, the they were not built for maintenance. Meaning, once installed, they weren’t designed to come off again.
At each mag spoke there is a hook-clip, and a “loop” next to it. The clip from the opposite cover clicks into the loop. There was no way to reach the clip to pry it out from underneath the loop, so the result is a lot of loops snapped off. With the pressures involved, I don’t think epoxying the loops would do any good because they’d snap off on installation. So I’m going to have to figure out a permanent epoxy answer.

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Next I need to get to my stash and see if I have a replacement rim.
Speaker cover fasteners. Lots of possibilities.
CLICK HERE and go crazy. lol
 
I found two possible replacement rims
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But one was damaged, so got tossed. The other will work fine. It’s got chrome breakage, but it’s going to get new chrome.
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The freewheel was a mess, and in my excitement I forgot to take a before pic, but it was a dirty mess, and the freewheel body wasn’t spinning well. So I soaked it all in fairy dust and it came out nice, and I worked out the gunk and worked in fresh lube, so the freewheel body is spinning very well.
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We made the plan this morning. I'm going to get the rim dipped to remove the plating, then my guy is going to fill in the spoke holes with weld and we're going to smooth them out to make the rim solid. I'm going to cut/grind the 6-spoke hub out of the damaged rim, then we'll weld it to the new rim. A good amount of work, but it's what it needs.
 
We made the plan this morning. I'm going to get the rim dipped to remove the plating, then my guy is going to fill in the spoke holes with weld and we're going to smooth them out to make the rim solid. I'm going to cut/grind the 6-spoke hub out of the damaged rim, then we'll weld it to the new rim. A good amount of work, but it's what it needs.
That is a fair amount of work but that old rim was pretty crunched. Worth it for this bike for sure.
 

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