Sunday, September 11, 2011

Aerotrack of the Day

I change this bike around enough I might as well document it.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Label Whore.

I don't know what it is about BMX that turns me into a label whore. Maybe it's the design of the parts, and the slick logos. I don't think it's the ads. I see these young little bastards going big, and it just makes me mad, because I suck in comparison. I don't know who they are, beyond Nigel Sylvester, Garrett Reynolds, and Bruce Crisman. Interesting, they ride for Animal, Premium, and KHE respectively. Okay maybe the advertising and edits are seeping into my skull.

I really think it's the parts themselves, though. They are absolutely beautiful. The are very minimal too, thanks to Taiwan's designers using the latest stress analysis programs to shave weight and material where it isn't needed. If riders like Sean Burns aren't breaking stuff, I sure won't. I'm still going to run a 48 spoke wheel out back, with a KHE Astern freecoaster and a Sun Big City rim. In front it's a Sun Big Baller. See, there's those labels here's few more: S&M leather and kevlar seat, Revenge Industries weed grips, Mosh Street Bars (rip-off of old Vision Street Wear logo), and lots of Animal parts. GLH tires in 2.25 and 2.1, Hamilton DX copy pedals, Sprocky Balboa chainwheel, and an Animal pivotal post. I used  S&M P-guts so I could keep my S&M railed seat (so old school).

It's also the names sucking me in. As soon as I heard there was a BMX frame called Deathtrap, I had to have it. The bonus was that Premium is made by Haro, and the extra bonus was the Strawberry-designed seatpost clamp.

It isn't all new, there are some old school parts as well. I have an old Haro fork that I actually drew when I worked for Haro. The cranks are mid school GT. I'm still not on board with 48 spline (sorry Profile) or 2 piece cranks.

So that's me the BMX label whore. I even have T-shirts to advertise these companies that I buy the parts from. So sad, I should just get a Don Ed Hardy t-shirt, and a Magnum Desert Eagle and end it all right now.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

1952 Schwinn Klunker - Repainted

I finally decided to repaint my 1952 Schwinn. I lost the flamed fenders when I put on the knobblies, and fenderless is a little more "Klunker". I was looking for a color similar to Dan's Dodge pickup , a reddish orange, or orangeish red.

Arizona Dave had this can of Krylon Pimento paint. There wasn't enough and Ace Hardware had that new Rust-O-Leum 2X cover paint in a close-enough color, Paprika. Friggin' decorator color names. One is reddish orange and the other is orangeish red. I dislike Krylon, it always wants to run, which sucks if you are painting tubes. I am now heating up my spraycans in boiling water every time, they don't want to clog when you do that. It's an old model car builder trick, try it.

I painted the fork first, and that's when I ran out. I went and grabbed more paint at Ace and got it on there as soon as possible, too impatient to wait for it to dry so I could sand it, and too lazy to rough it up anyways.

So you can see a little of the color difference, just like I was saying, just off enough to make me repaint the fork.

This is the rack from the Monark. It looks really nice on the Schwinn, it functions well and keeps most of the mud off your back. I had to make the stays because the Monark was a 24" and this bike is a 26". I made them out of seat stays so they are tapered.

This Bendix hub is from the 50's and predates the Red Band, so it is correct for 1952. Made in Elmira, N.Y. It has a screw-on cog and left-threaded lockring like a fixed gear, but of course they are a different size. That cone wrench is a regular wrench from a BMW tool kit ground down real thin.

I use automotive high temperature disc brake bearing grease for coasterbrakes for an obvious reason, they get HOT. That is why they named the most famous Klunker trail Repack. You got to the bottom and repacked your hub. I have had coasterbrakes hot enough to sizzle if you spit on them.

This coasterbrake needs new shoes desperately, they are oil-impregnated bronze and worn the fuck out. There's quite a distance to backpedal before you get brake, and the "slack" is annoying. This shot sort of shows how it goes together, and that you must grease every surface.

More vintage Schwinn stuff, Clover chainwheel and 28tpi bottom bracket from a 1965 American and Diamond cranks from a late-model Varsity. A lot of Klunkers used this crank because it was stronger than the round cross-section crank. Sorry about the fake DX pedals.

I don't have a bike stand, and I don't really like them anyways. Schwinn cups go in easy, I think the press fits were a little looser in the 50's

I've seen bikes built this way on the Japanese websites by frail-looking old men, it seems to be a western thing to clamp a bike in a vise. I've built bikes upside down since I first started building my BMX bikes by myself.

I like how the color turned out, and the yellowish tan seat, and orangeish-brown weed grips sorta go with the orangeish red paint. Now all it needs is a drum brake and a big Magura motocross lever, a Bendix 76 Mexico coasterbrake, or a 2-speed kickback. I want to use rims designed for a disc brake because they look similar to the prewar drop-center rims.

The handlebars are Suzuki RM 250.

Yes, that is a real Mongoose Gold Stem.

Clear Bench = Clear Mind

Rare in Portland

My only beef about Portland is that not enough people love old cars. So many eco-conscious people here it's absolutely ridiculous. They are so blinded by their cause that they fail to see the beauty in old machines, and historic value and worth, or the simple fact that restoring and preserving an old car, truck, or motorcycle is recycling and reusing.

Would melting down that beautiful Land Rover to make Pepsi cans be a better use of its aluminum shell?

And what about that big Mopar "gas guzzler"? I don't know if Hot Rod Pizza actually uses this car to deliver their Pizzas or if it is a rolling billboard. The 60's style drag racing graphics rock and they show what race cars looked like in the golden era before the corporate takeover of the Drag Strip forced all the ingenuity and creativity of the privateer to the curb. Now it's just billboards on high-tech surface missiles designed by engineers and piloted by talking heads who thank their sponsors before they thank their own family.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Steampunk Goggles

A friend of mine is planning to attend the Steampunk Exhibition Ball and was thinking about buying some goggles, you know, pre-made "custom" ones. I wanted to spare her the horror of looking across the room and seeing someone else with the same 'custom" ones so I offered to make her some REAL Custom goggles. Really, they are nothing special, but sometimes less is more.

I started by accumulating hardware. There's a lot of brass and copper in Steampunk, but more important than that is using a slotted head and not Phillips, which only came into widespread use after WWII. The round knurled nuts are used on Presta valves, and the acorn nuts are from Dia-Compe brake pads.

Next I stripped down some brazing goggles, sanded the gloss off them, and marked and drilled some holes. I made center marks with the X-Acto, and then pilot drilled them 1/8", and then drilled them to size. Loving my new cordless drill with a keyless chuck.

So this is the new Rust-O-Luem paint, Ultra Cover. They've went to a Montana style cap and the shit covers fast and dries fast. I used Krylon Fusion for plastic on the lens retainers, in hammered copper. I taped off the threads and where the lenses rest against the goggles.

Always "clock" your screws, make them all line up. It's a neat little detail that motorcycle and car restoration nuts do, as well as nerdy chopper and Hot Rod builders.

SRSLY, fuck a hot glue gun. That technology was not available in the 1800's! Nuts and bolts.

There's always some decorative gizmoness on Steampunk accessories. Those "crystal" stars spin. I knocked the gloss of the hammered copper, but resisted the urge to add some "faux-tina".

Behold the Supreme Dorque of Beavertowne