29'er Electra build.

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Hellow fellow RRB'ers, how it's been?
I missed you guys not taking part in the big BO this summer, so even though i don't have a solid plan for a build i've decided to jump on to a WBO train.
I didn't know what to build until ar some point i've seen this bike on my facebook feed. Let this be an inspiration to what i am going to build.
s-l16010.jpg


So a new school klunker inspired bike with an OPC it is.
I want to use as much of the stuff i already have and not spend too much money on the build :) I have this old ladies Electra frame lying around that i was planning to cut u for a custom frame at some point.
IMG_7369.JPG


As you see it is already partially deconstructed, so it'd be a bit easier for me to cut it apart :)
IMG_7370.JPG


I want the bike to be ridable for myself and i am a tall guy, so i am planning to run 29" tires on it. Regular city bike 28" wheels are widely available here, and i have a set of Schwalbe 29" tires i found near the trash can three years ago :) So a 29" it is. Seems that the wheel like this can be squeezed into the frame even without modification, so clearance shouldn't be an issue.
IMG_7368.JPG


I really dislike derailleurs and rim brakes so my options are either single speed coaster brake or planetary hub on the rear, and drum brake or brakeless on the front. I could also agree on rim brakes on the front if it ends up to be so, but not for the rear, so i am not planning to run a freewheel on the rear. I believe single speed coaster would be more appropriate for early years klunkers. However i feel like 3 speed planetary hub would be more functional for actual use. Did they run inner gear hubs on first MTB's in the 70's?

Here is a quick sketch i've made to visualize what i can do with the Electra frame by using existing frame tubes and to see where i am heading too.

Снимок экрана 2022-10-06 в 16.31.21.png
 

OddJob

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Welcome back to the RRB build off fun, @Starnger ! I like your concept and ideas. Keep those posts and photos coming.

RaT oN~!
 

Pondo

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Did they run inner gear hubs on first MTB's in the 70's?
They did. The external geared hubs proved more reliable and were more widely used but they tried everything that was available. Here's a good deal on a 3 speed drum brake hub:
It's just the hub. No cable, shifter or even axle nuts but the seller has sent me an offer of $32 which seems decent.

This is going to be a fun build, looking forward to it!
 
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They did. The external geared hubs proved more reliable and were more widely used but they tried everything that was available. Here's a good deal on a 3 speed drum brake hub:
It's just the hub. No cable, shifter or even axle nuts but the seller has sent me an offer of $32 which seems decent.

This is going to be a fun build, looking forward to it!
I am in Europe, so shipping plus tax for this particular offer is over 120$ :D
But the good thing is i have quite a few english and german made wheel sets available, i am going to look into getting an already laced one. If i won't find anything then i will probably get a hub similar to what you showed.
Thanks a lot for sharing the knowledge! I feel more confident using a planetary gear hub for this build now!
 
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Got Torpedo?
I am planning to buy a donor bike to take a wheel set off. I have a couple of nice candidates locally for under 50$ and we'll see which one it ends up to be. Either a coaster brake Torpedo, a later SRAM made hub of similar design with a SRAM brake similar to Shimano roller brake, or a Sturmey Archer with rear and front drum brake.
 

Tallbikeman

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Hellow fellow RRB'ers, how it's been?
I missed you guys not taking part in the big BO this summer, so even though i don't have a solid plan for a build i've decided to jump on to a WBO train.
I didn't know what to build until ar some point i've seen this bike on my facebook feed. Let this be an inspiration to what i am going to build.
View attachment 212194

So a new school klunker inspired bike with an OPC it is.
I want to use as much of the stuff i already have and not spend too much money on the build :) I have this old ladies Electra frame lying around that i was planning to cut u for a custom frame at some point.
View attachment 212190

As you see it is already partially deconstructed, so it'd be a bit easier for me to cut it apart :)
View attachment 212191

I want the bike to be ridable for myself and i am a tall guy, so i am planning to run 29" tires on it. Regular city bike 28" wheels are widely available here, and i have a set of Schwalbe 29" tires i found near the trash can three years ago :) So a 29" it is. Seems that the wheel like this can be squeezed into the frame even without modification, so clearance shouldn't be an issue.
View attachment 212192

I really dislike derailleurs and rim brakes so my options are either single speed coaster brake or planetary hub on the rear, and drum brake or brakeless on the front. I could also agree on rim brakes on the front if it ends up to be so, but not for the rear, so i am not planning to run a freewheel on the rear. I believe single speed coaster would be more appropriate for early years klunkers. However i feel like 3 speed planetary hub would be more functional for actual use. Did they run inner gear hubs on first MTB's in the 70's?

Here is a quick sketch i've made to visualize what i can do with the Electra frame by using existing frame tubes and to see where i am heading too.

View attachment 212193
I raced Klunkers in the late 70's and early 80's in Northern California. There was a fairly large contingent of Sturmey Archer 3 speed hubs raced at Klunker races and they did very well. The AW Sturmey Archer hub is really stout and stands up to Klunker racing. In those days there was no suspension of any sort used. I didn't see the old American suspension forks at all. Everyone used Ashtabula forged forks. That 3 speed hubs were extensively and successfully used is forgotten now and is not mentioned in any histories but I saw them in use and winning races. You can use a modern Sturmey Archer with or without coaster brake and your bike will be period correct.
 
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I raced Klunkers in the late 70's and early 80's in Northern California. There was a fairly large contingent of Sturmey Archer 3 speed hubs raced at Klunker races and they did very well. The AW Sturmey Archer hub is really stout and stands up to Klunker racing. In those days there was no suspension of any sort used. I didn't see the old American suspension forks at all. Everyone used Ashtabula forged forks. That 3 speed hubs were extensively and successfully used is forgotten now and is not mentioned in any histories but I saw them in use and winning races. You can use a modern Sturmey Archer with or without coaster brake and your bike will be period correct.
Great! Thank you so much for your input!
I am still not sure wether i will use a forged fork from lightweight Schwinn or build a custom one. I believe i'd try to put the wheel in my Schwinn fork, and if it clears then i may use that one, but i actually doubt 29" tire would clear the fork made for 27" wheel and a narrow tire.
 
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I raced Klunkers in the late 70's and early 80's in Northern California. There was a fairly large contingent of Sturmey Archer 3 speed hubs raced at Klunker races and they did very well. The AW Sturmey Archer hub is really stout and stands up to Klunker racing. In those days there was no suspension of any sort used. I didn't see the old American suspension forks at all. Everyone used Ashtabula forged forks. That 3 speed hubs were extensively and successfully used is forgotten now and is not mentioned in any histories but I saw them in use and winning races.
Outstanding historical facts, @Tallbikeman ! Because I need glasses, I initially misread "histories" as "hipstories", which seems fitting at times. There are a slew of people trying desperately to repeat this niche of bicycle history who seem to believe more in the popularized hipstory and some of the builds that are supposed to be period correct seem to miss the mark, often times ending up far from it. Even so, I understand individuals wanting to build bikes to suit their needs and desires at the expense of period correctness because that's a principal of rat-rodding and resto-modding. Your BTDT experience and true knowledge are excellent guidance for those who wish to build a historically accurate Klunker.
 
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Went to Swarzędz, a small town near Poznan today to pick up a donor bike. Paid slightly under 40 bucks for it.
Locomotief is a Dutch manufacturer located in Dieren, a small town on the south east of the Netherlands.
IMAGE 2022-10-13 18:40:23.jpg


It is quite a big bike, i will measure the frame size later. Judging by parts it is from late 90's - early 2000's. The bike is in overall good techincal condition apart from the flat tire and some wear. The wheels are straight enough for test fitting but i'd need them straightened slightly before finishing.
IMAGE 2022-10-13 18:40:24.jpg


As you can see it has SRAM hubs. Not period correct for early Klunkers (but so again i am not bulding a bike on a vintage frame) but technically it is same old Sachs.
IMAGE 2022-10-13 18:40:26.jpg


It uses the roller brakes from SRAM, not as popular as Shimano, i wanted to try them out to make an opinion on them for a while and here is my chance to do so! But they are definitely cool looking and i believe they would fit the bike i am intending to make!
IMAGE 2022-10-13 18:40:25.jpg


So the next step is to strip the wheels off the bike and make a test fit to the frame and fork i am thinking of using with the 29" tires on to determine weather they clear or not, and if not how much the frame has to be modified then.
 

Pondo

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It uses the roller brakes from SRAM, not as popular as Shimano, i wanted to try them out to make an opinion on them for a while and here is my chance to do so! But they are definitely cool looking and i believe they would fit the bike i am intending to make!
I think these roller brakes will give the bike the Klunker feel you are looking for and will look great. Should work well too, as a bonus. :thumbsup:
 
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Couldn't wait to try if the wheels would fit so i've put the tires and tubes i am intending to use. In the process i've noticed a couple of bad dents in the stainless steel rim, but there is nothing the hammer can't fix :D In fact i have a feeling that while there is some issue with the rim, the tire has almost no wobble. Boy, they do look aggressive and large.
IMG_7404.JPG


First i've tried to fit them into the Schwinn lightweight fork, and they don't clear. Even if i grind off the fender mounting tab there is such a small gap on the sides it would rub with the slightest rim imperfection. So i am leaving the Schwinn fork for some later project.
IMG_7405.JPG


While i am intending to build a custom fork for this bike i still went ahead and tried it on an Electra Amsterdam fork. It clears well, so i have a plan B in case something won't work out for me the way i want. It would also be a good fork for test fits before i make my own!
IMG_7406.JPG


Now the frame. Though i had to push it in the wheel does clear the unmodified frame while being on the tip of the drop outs.
IMG_7407.JPG


Even though there is not a lot of clearance i now see that i only need to move and deepen the drop outs slightly to make a perfect fit.
IMG_7408.JPG


My plan is to cut the drop outs off from the chain stays and rotate them until the angle is good to accommodate a new longer seat tube and the proportions are nice. Though if needed i also would cut them off the seat stays and add a bit of angle there as well. And probably i'd deepen the wheel slot about half an inch or an inch. So the next step i am planning are the frame works! :)
 
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Okay, time to chop!
IMG_7425.JPG


First i've removed the seat tube that is already not quite attached.
IMG_7426.JPG


Then i had to let go of the kickstand. I was planning to carefully cut it off but it was so frozen that it snapped off. The good thing is that i was able to see the metal inside is in rather good condition and not rusted through. Though i may still replace that part that connects the chain stays with the bottom bracket.
IMG_7427.JPG


Cutting the bottom welds of the drop out plates.
IMG_7428.JPG


And voila! I am able to bend it the way i want. Here is more or less the length of the seat tube i would need. But i am not sure i keep it that way, i may as well make it somewhat shorter.
IMG_7430.JPG


I still have a lot of dropout plate material left, i can as well cut the excessive steel off and round it nicely and then cut a new set of slots.
IMG_7429.JPG
 

OddJob

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This is progressing nicely! I like the long seat tube, it adds more 'lean' to the look. And that nice snug tire fit is always optimal in my point of view!
 

Pondo

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Did they run inner gear hubs on first MTB's in the 70's?

There was a fairly large contingent of Sturmey Archer 3 speed hubs raced at Klunker races and they did very well.

I'd love to find some pics of 3 speed setups

I found this one on the Marin mountain bike museum website.
1668175572138.png

"John Borzini exiting Camera Corner, December 1976."

3 speed cantilever framed Schwinn (Corvette?) with a front drum brake racing Repack in 1976. Very cool stuff. I was still riding my Huffy Buckaroo back then. 🤣
 

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