Murdoch

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Pondo

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This build is going to be a tribute to the early 70s Crested Butte style klunkers. I really like their care free aesthetic and wild and crazy sensibility. These folks knew how to party!
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They weren't athletes so much as beer drinkers with a bike hobby. But they did start the Pearl Pass ride, eventually created many miles of singletrack and helped kick start the modern mountain bike phenomenon. Their early bikes were more junker than klunker. Just anything that was laying around was fair game. They were mostly old coaster brake Schwinn ballooners with apes or BMX bars but light weights and BMX bikes were also pressed into service.
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The Schwinn cantilever with the JC Higgins springer is one of my faves.
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One of the CB pioneers, a gent named Neil Murdoch, helped promote the sport and opened what is thought to be the first shop exclusively for mountain bikes.
Murdoch was an alias he was living under as he was wanted by the law and managed to allude arrest for 28 years. This nut was even inducted into the mountain bike hall of fame for his contributions to the sport.

Enter Murdoch, my '54 AMF built CWC Crested Butte Klunker tribute:
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Pondo

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I'm starting off mocking it up with a vintage (60s?) Murray fork that has an interesting set of truss rods. I don't have a JC Higgins springer but this fork achieves a bit of a similar look. The handlebars are '69 Schwinn high bars. I can't imagine these will be comfortable for off road riding but it worked for those guys so it will work for me!
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I'll be seated comfortably on a well worn old Brooks. Brakes from my old Raleigh Superbe. This seatpost is a place holder until my chromoly one shows up. SR double road cranks are on the way too. I'll likely be running 90s mountain bike wheels with 5 or 6 speed freewheel. They mostly did coaster braked bikes in Crested Butte in the early 70s but I need gears so I'm kicking this one up the evolutionary chain slightly.
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Derailleurs are SunTour GT and Comp-V. Old 10 speed down tube shifters mounted to the unknown stem.
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I'm concerned that the bottom bracket is so low to the ground that I'm going to get a lot of pedal strikes so I may pillage the springer from the pink bike and give it a vintage paint scheme. That's more Morrow Dirt Club than Crested Butte but it's all klunk.
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That's all I've got for now. So far so fun!
 
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Captain Awesome

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I'm starting off mocking it up with a vintage (60s?) cruiser fork that has an interesting set of truss rods. I don't have a JC Higgins springer but this fork achieves a bit of a similar look. The handlebars are '69 Schwinn high bars. I can't imagine these will be comfortable for off road riding but it worked for those guys so it will work for me!
View attachment 211543 View attachment 211544

I'll be seated comfortably on a well worn old Brooks. Brakes from my old Raleigh Superbe. This seatpost is a place holder until my chrome moly one shows up. SR double road cranks are on the way too. I'll likely be running 90s mountain bike wheels with 5 or 6 speed freewheel. They mostly did coaster braked bikes in Crested Butte in the early 70s but I need gears so I'm kicking this one up the evolutionary chain slightly.
View attachment 211545

Derailleurs are SunTour GT and Comp-V. Old 10 speed down tube shifters mounted to the unknown stem.
View attachment 211548 View attachment 211546 View attachment 211547

I'm concerned that the bottom bracket is so low to the ground that I'm going to get a lot of pedal strikes so I may pillage the springer from the pink bike and give it a vintage paint scheme. That's more Morrow Dirt Club than Crested Butte but it's all klunk.
View attachment 211549

That's all I've got for now. So far so fun!
Those look like the Murray forks I used on my summer build off bike
 

JA331

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Too cool. I was contemplating doing a cwc klunker but chose the prewar Schwinn I’ve had laying around for a couple of years.
 

Ulu

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I'm starting off mocking it up with a vintage (60s?) Murray fork that has an interesting set of truss rods. . . .I'm concerned that the bottom bracket is so low to the ground that I'm going to get a lot of pedal strikes . . .

I’m pretty sure I’m going to build a light rigid girder. I’ve always wanted to build a girder, but I didn’t want the weight of suspension.

It took me a long time to realize it should just be rigid.
 

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Love the history on this one. I really got into bikes in the late 80's through mountain biking, eventually becoming a mechanic working at an exclusive MTN bike shop. Then I joined the Navy. I kept riding trails up in WA where I was stationed, but I eventually didn't have time or extra money so hung it up and sold my bike. But old school MTN bikes hold a place in my heart. I'm going to enjoy watching this one come together!
 

Pondo

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old school MTN bikes hold a place in my heart
Me too. In the 70s I was still riding kids bikes and my own home brew BMX builds. I got my first mountain bike in '83 I think, a chrome Murray Baja. Not real high quality but I rode it to death. Literally.
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Funny commercial considering these were kind of cheapo bikes:


Here's what Charlie Kelly had to say about this model:
Somebody gave Gary (Fisher) a Baja for Chrismas or his birthday around 1981, because they only cost $80-90 and it was worth it for the humor element . It was such a joke next to a Ritchey that we gave it to a guy who was broke but loved bikes and he rode it into the ground, which wasn't hard, because it was really heavy and a strong rider would tear the frame apart in short order.
Some of the cheapest bikes of that era were made in the USA, Murray and Huffy


I love mountain biking and mountain bikes. I've really gotten interested in the history of the bikes and the people who pioneered the machines and the sport. I've got a Marin county style klunker in the works too but it's a bigger build project so it will wait for a future build off. If I'm patient enough. 🤣
 

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Huffy had such a bad rap that I raced with a guy who rode a really nice, high end Ritchey. He re-badged it with Huffy decals so people would underestimate him, and it worked. The guys on the line would eyeball his Huffy and laugh, then he would dust them. I never could keep up with him. lol
 

Pondo

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Huffy had such a bad rap that I raced with a guy who rode a really nice, high end Ritchey. He re-badged it with Huffy decals so people would underestimate him, and it worked. The guys on the line would eyeball his Huffy and laugh, then he would dust them. I never could keep up with him. lol
That's awesome! In college I had thought about replacing the stickers on my GT with Huffy stickers so thieves wouldn't want it. I wound up just painting it camo and that seemed to work. :bigsmile:
 

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Huffy had such a bad rap that I raced with a guy who rode a really nice, high end Ritchey. He re-badged it with Huffy decals so people would underestimate him, and it worked. The guys on the line would eyeball his Huffy and laugh, then he would dust them. I never could keep up with him. lol
I had Harley decals on one of my Ducatis. It got all the lulz
 

Captain Awesome

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That must have thrown a few people for a loop! I love HDs and Ducks.
Inside joke. The previous season I had spent at the back of the pack getting consistently beat by 1200 sportsters on my little 350 twin cylinder two-stroke. So the next year when I showed up with my Ducati all of those guys gave me a hard time and said I was trying to buy my way to a championship. Good natured ribbing between fellow competitors
 

Pondo

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Inside joke. The previous season I had spent at the back of the pack getting consistently beat by 1200 sportsters on my little 350 twin cylinder two-stroke. So the next year when I showed up with my Ducati all of those guys gave me a hard time and said I was trying to buy my way to a championship. Good natured ribbing between fellow competitors
It's all in good fun. I used to enjoy showing up guys on faster bikes with my Hawk GT. But I was also shown up in turn by guys on 500 singles and a particularly tasty RVF400.
 

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It's all in good fun. I used to enjoy showing up guys on faster bikes with my Hawk GT. But I was also shown up in turn by guys on 500 singles and a particularly tasty RVF400.
I love everything you listed there. I've owned several NT650s and even more big thumpers. Never had a 400 like that but I sure wish I did. I always wanted a JDM ZX4 but that never came to fruition
 

Pondo

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I love everything you listed there. I've owned several NT650s and even more big thumpers. Never had a 400 like that but I sure wish I did. I always wanted a JDM ZX4 but that never came to fruition
I still have my Hawks though I haven't messed with them in years. My favorites by far. I just like the personality. I looked for a grey market RVF400 years ago but never found one I could afford. Awesome little machine! I never got the super moto I wanted either. I think I would have just gotten into trouble on it. 🤣
 

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I still have my Hawks though I haven't messed with them in years. My favorites by far. I just like the personality. I looked for a grey market RVF400 years ago but never found one I could afford. Awesome little machine! I never got the super moto I wanted either. I think I would have just gotten into trouble on it. 🤣
All of my supermoto time has been on the track. Those things are a one-way ticket to a jail cell on the road
 

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