Re: I'm Restoring a late 40's Rocket - Then comes the motor....
The above two posts trigger a number of thoughts. Whenever I strip a bike down and the years of grime and paint take it takes me back to a day when it was brand new at the factory and was being painted and detailed for sale out in the commercial world.
And as I work I think about whoever it was who got that bike and the other old timers I've worked on... how excited they must have been! And I wonder if it was a birthday present or Christmas or even something hard earned from a paper route or sacking groceries on Saturdays. And I wonder if that person is still here in the world and if they would find my activities of interest. I like to think they would.
But when you actually know something of the bike's history that makes it all the more valuable in my mind. Not in money, but as a time machine. I had the good fortune to buy a 1942 Schwinn "The World" step through bike this summer. Dorothy said she got it as a hand be down from her big sister who graduated from high school in 1949, so gave it to her little sister. I asked where she grew up and we discovered we had been neighbors of a sort although in different decades... having lived in the same rural community south of Ely, Minnesota. I knew the community where she grew up and the names of people there were familiar to both of us. So now something special has to be done with Dorothy's bike. It is set aside and covered for the day when it becomes a neat old three wheeler. I want to take it one day when it is all done and show Dorothy her old bike. Legacy bikes is what I call them.
Someday when I grow up I will probably lose interest in toys with wheels, but until then...