AMF Debutante and unknown Huffy girls' bikes ID, Value and Potential

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Slow-Rider

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I almost always lose actual money (cold hard cash) on many bikes. Putting them together and saving them from the crusher is the real value. I'd rather give them away sometimes in hopes they at least get a bit more use
I tried that once in the 90's you could find high end to descent lowend and Junkers. free trash day. (pre internet/ Ebay) kids grew up wanted a car or just stopped riding bikes. so there old stuff sat at curb trash day as junk. plus at the time I worked at a bike shop. so any old parts or hole bike customers no longer. wanted to keep. I got free. so as a hobby. I drug them home cleaned and fixed them up. some I keep. but most I gave away free. to kids in need of a bike. but then I learned some flipped the bikes at Yard sales, swap meets and recycler IE news paper version of ebay. when I asked one parent what the H!!! he claimed his kid wanted a newer bike. so they sold the one I gave them free. to help pay for new bike. ya no that smelted of a lie. it took the fun/joy out of it. spent my time fixing it up making it nice. so they could profit on it. IE they had no money tied up in it. ( new tubes and other smalls) no time fixing it up. yet they got the cash. so I stop giving them away and sold them cheep. figured that if they buy it they appreciate it more.

any who now I mostly fix them up to keep. some I do flip to fund other builds. now that old bikes are considered cool again.
 

MattiThundrrr

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"Calculate the fun into your profit column by subtracting from the entertainment budget." I like how that sounds, but I might need some extra help explaining how that works
I don't spend much money on drink anymore, I haven't gone to the show lately, I don't have any green fees to pay or clubs to buy. All the money I could be spending on recreation can be subtracted from the bike budget because really it's the entertainment budget I'm spending. Or something, it's basically justification for my actions
 
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I don't spend much money on drink anymore, I haven't gone to the show lately, I don't have any green fees to pay or clubs to buy. All the money I could be spending on recreation can be subtracted from the bike budget because really it's the entertainment budget I'm spending. Or something, it's basically justification for my actions
I think I get what you're saying. I actually remember hearing this before, though I forgot if it was you or someone else who said this a while back. I admittedly lump entertainment, recreation, and bikes all into my "expendable funds." And given how little I've got to work with right now, if I had to spend that money on anything, I'd spend it on bike parts and the occasional bag of sour gummy worms before anything else. I don't go to a lot of events aside from the occasional car show (most of which cost nothing as a spectator,) I don't eat out, there haven't been any movies I really wanted to see in theaters for a while now, and I don't play or watch any sports. Admittedly, the only thing I'm regularly spending money on is gas, and even then I don't get my car out unless I need to and I can combine multiple stops into one trip. Plus my gas funds are separate from the expendable funds.

For me, bikes are one of my biggest sources for recreational activity, and even entertainment. Bikes are a great way for me to let my creativity run wild, not just with the custom paint jobs and decals I design myself, but with the way I assemble the bikes using whatever parts I have available to me. And once I finish a bike, I can load it onto my car's bike rack and take it for a ride anywhere I want! On top of that, I have forums like Rat Rod Bikes and The C.A.B.E. to provide me with a little bicycle-related entertainment, where I can share updates on my bikes and see what everyone else is building and riding. Participating in bicycle build offs and other fun site-related activities can also be a good source of entertainment and friendly competition too.

I guess if I really had to budget anything into a bicycle build aside from the cost of parts or my time spent building a bike, it'd be the cost of gas from driving to or from my storage building a few towns over to pick up and/or drop off parts, as well as driving to my dad's shop whenever I need to borrow his tools. Not the easiest point to calculate, since I usually have other higher-priority reasons to be driving out that far besides anything bicycle-related. I guess the best thing I can do is find a good starting bike that is relatively desirable at a price low enough that I can still turn a profit without putting a lot of work into it. I doubt that blue Huffy is that bike, and the Debutante even less so, but hey, who knows? Maybe someone will love what I do to that Huffy so much they'll make me an offer on it I couldn't refuse!
 
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I've got a small preview of some progress I've made on the Huffy. I got the original fork off the bike, and I found a 20 inch fork in my stash of parts with the correct steerer tube length to replace it. I also got the seat post out of the frame, and found that it was only inserted about 2 or 3 inches into the seat tube!

BftD_blue_huffy_fork_n_mockups_16.jpg
BftD_blue_huffy_fork_n_mockups_28.jpg


Here's the plan: I need to figure out if I have replacement bearings and bearing cups in stock so I can mount the bottom bracket assembly and fork. I also need to find out if the Debutante's seat post is longer than the Huffy's, so I can use that instead of this far too short seat post. If the seat post isn't long enough, I have an idea to work around that, but I really need the right combination of bearings and bearing cups if I'm going to make this bike rideable again. If it turns out I have the parts I need, then I may just enter this Huffy into the Muscle Bike Build Off. If not, then I'll just save this project for a later time and work on something else.
 
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Made a little progress on these 2 bikes last night. I took apart the Debutante so I could use the parts on my other bikes, chief among them being my 1962 AMF Western Flyer Sonic Flyer, which is just barely visible on the far left of the picture below.
BftD_amf_debutante_disassembly_1.jpg


Can't recall the last time I saw the coaster brake arm mounted this way...
BftD_amf_debutante_disassembly_2.jpg


I was hoping to use the seat post off the Debutante on the Huffy, but to my surprise, the seat bolts directly through the seat post! It doesn't even use a clamp; it just bolts into the seat post! So unless I use the Debutante's seat with it, I can't really use this seat post.
BftD_amf_debutante_disassembly_3.jpg
BftD_amf_debutante_disassembly_4.jpg


The end result: a pile of parts, perfect for repurposing.
BftD_amf_debutante_disassembly_5.jpg


As for the Huffy, I lucked out and found I had the bearings, bearing cups, and races necessary to get this bike rolling.
BftD_blue_huffy_bearings_1.jpg
BftD_blue_huffy_bearings_2.jpg


And it even has a near-nonexistent gap!
BftD_blue_huffy_bearings_3.jpg


I had to take apart this $5 Huffy parts bike to get the other headset bearing, as I only had one good Hartford 52 bearing loose up to that point. I've had the chance to ride this bike a bit, now it's time to use it the way I intended.
BftD_blue_huffy_bearings_4.jpg


Fortunately, it had exactly what I needed! The bearings need cleaning of course, but they should be totally useable.
BftD_blue_huffy_bearings_5.jpg
BftD_blue_huffy_bearings_6.jpg


I also took apart another parts bike for the bottom bracket bearings and cups, though I've got enough of those parts loose that I'm covered regardless.

So here's the good news on the Huffy: aside from the seat post, I have everything I need to make this bike rideable. I've got wheels, tires, tubes, sissy bars, banana seats, bearings, bearing cups, cranks, chain rings, handlebars, and I've got a fork and chain guard that all can go on this bike. I could build this bike super cheap... but there's a catch.

I've got everything I need to make the bike rideable, but I don't have everything I need to make the bike look good. Just about every part I have for this bike is a different color, and most of them are rather unsightly. The fork is pink, the chain guard is grey, the seat is either a worn-out white or a mint condition black depending on which one I choose, the good wheels I have are some shade of pink or purple, the rear fender is chrome, I have one 20" slick but no other good 20" black tires, and the rest of the good 20" tires I have are either whitewalls or just plain white. Basically, if I throw this bike together using just what I have, it'll look like a mess. Worse yet, I only have a few different colors of spray paint to work with, and the weather's not ideal for painting either.
BftD_blue_huffy_fork_n_mockups_26.jpg


I could ask Dad to powder coat this bike for me so the fork, frame, fender and maybe the chain guard match, but the rest of the chrome parts I have aren't all that nice and shiny, and it'd be hard to get them to shine up as well as the rest of the bike after powder coating. I think the best option I've got is to try and use the original, color and patina-matched fork that came with the bike, and weld a new steerer tube on it. As long as the fork matches the frame, it'd be easier to either leave or paint the other parts the way I want.
BftD_blue_huffy_25.jpg


I have an idea of how I'd do that, but I need to do some serious research on how to cut and weld steerer tubes before I try that. I do not want a repeat of what happened last year with The Schwinn Dixie Dreamcycle. That hurt in more ways than one. If anyone knows the best way to cut and weld a new steerer tube to a fork without it resulting in utter disaster like what's pictured below, please let me know.
BftD_Schwinn_Dixie_RRBBO_glory_and_defeat_2.jpg
BftD_Schwinn_Dixie_RRBBO_glory_and_defeat_6.jpg


At this point, I'm not going to enter the MBBO this year. I've got other bikes to work on right now that don't require as much effort or cash. I know I can still build this Huffy into something cool, but between the weather, the parts that need repairing, the parts that need painting, and the parts that I just plain need, I think it's best if I wait to build this bike until the time is right. Now just isn't that time.
 
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