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Motorized Cruiser Bicycles The beach cruiser has always been great bicycles to motorize. They just look good with a motor. Use this section to share and discuss about motorizing this classic.

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  #11  
Old 03-26-2015, 03:25 PM
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mapbike mapbike is offline
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

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Originally Posted by monturacer3 View Post
I just tore into my hub yesterday. I cleaned out all of the old grease from it and packed it and the bearings with hi-temp wheel bearing grease. I got the tank and engine mounted yesterday on the frame and I'm currently waiting for my billet sprocket adapter to come in. Then I'm completing the build.
Thats great..... hope you share some pix of your bike with us after you get it up and running, we l9ve to see a project come together on here.

Im currently in the process of changing tires and the engine on my Huffy, Im also fixing to make me a laidback seat post to set my seat about 4 inches farther back to give the bike a bit of a longer frame feel, Im not a tall fella at only 5'10" and 215lbs ut the Huffy bikes just feel a little short even for me so after almost 5 years of riding this bike Im gonna finally get my seat moved back a little to make it a little more comfortable.

Best wishes on your build and keep us up to date on it.

Map
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  #12  
Old 03-26-2015, 08:36 PM
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

A little semi-on topic rambling;

Over the years I've seen Huffys that had components that just didn't look all that good. Does anyone remember the straight, all plastic brake levers? And those reallly were bad. (But they're easily replaced.) Stuff like that leaves a bad taste in the mouth. I've noticed that there're folks who'll practically shudder with disgust when you mention the name, "Huffy". It seems to me that these few rather crappy components might be blinding them to the fact that the rest of the bike is pretty good.

I have no hard and fast data to prove that Huffy frames are stronger than others in the same price range. But they certainly don't feel weak to me.

And for those who like speed, Huffys tend to be geared 'high'. Though this doesn't apply to the Cranbrook, of course.

Back when I had enough youth for this type of thing, I'd put Huffy front chain rings on my pedal bikes during the summer. They tend to be a bit bigger than others. When I didn't have to deal with slush and snow and mud, then I'd just fly around during the summer. Then I'd go back to lower gearing in the winter. I've still got those Huffy front chainrings.

The bike I'm riding right now is an old Huffy. From the looks of it, it comes from the tail-end of their Dayton, Ohio days. Frame strength simply doesn't worry me. It can take a beating.
Current Huff.JPG

My old Cranbrook will soon be cleaned up and re-motored. Maybe my wife will get my current bike and I'll ride the Cranny. Or maybe my wife'll get a brand new 24 inch Cranbrook. I'm kinda leaning toward the new Cranbrook for her.

Earlier in this thread I gave the Cranbrook a pretty good review. But I was careful not to be too enthusiastic.

But I was being over-cautious. The fact is, these are great bikes!

To anyone who's wondering whether or not to go for it, I say "Yes".
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  #13  
Old 04-03-2015, 01:30 AM
monturacer3 monturacer3 is offline
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

UPDATE!
So I went ahead and got the kit for the bike. This is my second build, so I'm still kind of in the learning process of putting these bikes together properly. With approximately 30 miles on the bike, it's doing pretty good. I need to re-spray the head gasket though because I didn't do it thick enough the first time and it is leaking a bit. I torqued the head nuts down to 100 inch pounds. Should I go higher or leave it at that?

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  #14  
Old 04-03-2015, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

Be very cautious of the Huffy's front fender. The motor's vibration can easily crack the supports.........very bad things happen at that point. Also, add some front brakes. You don't want to rely on the Huffy's coaster brake.



Clean look'n build, by the way!
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  #15  
Old 04-03-2015, 11:26 AM
monturacer3 monturacer3 is offline
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

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Originally Posted by xseler View Post
Be very cautious of the Huffy's front fender. The motor's vibration can easily crack the supports.........very bad things happen at that point. Also, add some front brakes. You don't want to rely on the Huffy's coaster brake.



Clean look'n build, by the way!
Thanks! I built the bike for one of my friends and I'll be selling it to him. I already took apart the rear hub, cleaned it out, and packed it wuth a lit of car wheel bearing grease. I'll be sure to put a front brake in before I sell it.
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  #16  
Old 04-03-2015, 02:17 PM
KCvale KCvale is offline
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

You can re-grease and re-adjust the crap low grade parts in that back hub 'till the cows home' but it's not going change anything.

More expensive bikes are not for a larger profit, it because better material parts cost more money.

Those Huffy's have low grade cheap crap in that rear wheel and sell them with flashy paint to people that are just going to leisurely pedal them.

Lance Armstrong can put out about .2 HP, your engine puts out ~2HP.
Little on a $100 bike is going to take even 20mph abuse for long.

Sure, plenty of people defend the frame and such and I agree, much of the Cranbook is solid, and like you throw $80 at a mount sprocket and still have to dick with the hub and certainly get new tires and tubes to be happy as I'd bet the huffy's have paper thin tubes and $2 tires to boot .

Costs cuts are somewhere to make a $100 bike.

At least set yourself up with a pair of C-brakes for both wheels.

For those of you contemplating the absolute cheapest way to build a motorized bicycle please try to think ahead a bit...

Staring as cheap as you can is like a payday loan, you just keep paying forever to 'fix' all the stuff you could have got good on a bike to start with for much less.

I build a lot bikes and simply won't build on crap.
I also don't get many service repairs.
Get the connection?
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  #17  
Old 04-03-2015, 06:31 PM
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

Extra credit to xseler for remembering to warn about that front fender.

This is very, very important.

If that thing breaks loose and gets wound up in your front tire at speed, then you're doing a face plant literally before you know it. Right now I can't think of anything your bike needs more than this. Brakes on the rims come in at second place. That's pretty important, too.

And KCVale makes some valid points. I only happen to disagree with the notion that these reservations totally disqualify this particular bike. Yup, the tires are bottom of the barrel stuff. But no serious rider intends to just keep on using those tires anyway. They'll do for a month, or a season, while the rider gets ready to choose and get some better tires. And the rear hub is poor. As has already been discussed. But it's not so bad that it can't be used at all. It just needs to be used with care.

By the way, what about the non-serious rider? The one who can't get his head around the fact that he must be his own mechanic? Those tires will last him until he has his tantrum and gives up. The hub might or might not last that long. But none of that matters. The bike, as a whole, will only last about one season.

Last edited by bluegoatwoods; 04-03-2015 at 06:34 PM.
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  #18  
Old 04-03-2015, 06:55 PM
KCvale KCvale is offline
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

I agree blue, it can be a decent bike and not a 'start over' thing.
He just needs to be aware that all the money saved needs to be put back in with a motor on it.

One cheap easy tip is just get a small L bracket and screw it to your fender on the other side of the pos top fender bracket on your front wheel, upgrade your back wheel, and put some brakes on the ting.

My point is most people don't buy cheap but still have the money to do needed upgrades before they cause a problem.
You can buy an already good bike and not turn a wrench for the same money or less and you don't have to dick with it.

Just my thing to warn those that think they can build a new motorized bike that will run great and be safe for $250 and put it together in a couple hours.

Just an OK bicycle base outfitted with brakes is that much.
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Last edited by KCvale; 04-03-2015 at 07:06 PM.
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  #19  
Old 04-03-2015, 07:54 PM
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Smile Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by xseler View Post
Be very cautious of the Huffy's front fender. The motor's vibration can easily crack the supports.........very bad things happen at that point. Also, add some front brakes. You don't want to rely on the Huffy's coaster brake.



Clean look'n build, by the way!
Ditto.......


wise to loose that front fender or build some very strong supports, and yes at least get a caliper type front brake on it for safety reasons, some of us have had good service from the Huffy coaster hubs and other fail in a very short time or require steady maintenence to keep bearing tensioned right, 8 hope you have a good one like the one I been running since 2010, but who knows mine may crap out soon also...lol But I hope not.

Nice looking bike though and we suggest these thing for safety reasons not to be critical since many of us have been there done that on some of these issu3s that can create safety issues.

Happy Riding.....
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  #20  
Old 04-03-2015, 08:13 PM
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bluegoatwoods bluegoatwoods is offline
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Default Re: Huffy Cranbrook. To motorize or not?

"Just my thing to warn those that think they can build a new motorized bike that will run great and be safe for $250 and put it together in a couple hours." --KCvale

A very succinct way of stating a fairly common issue. One that often gives me a bit of worry when reading the posts of some newbies. There are folks out there who seem to think that they ought to get Honda or Yamaha quality and reliability on a $250 build.

I've seen a few where I've been certain that this was the issue. I've seen a whole bunch of others where I suspect that this was the issue.

It can be done with money up front. Or it can be done with sweat equity plus modest and occasional upgrades.

But the buyer has to choose one or the other.

I do kinda disapprove of those who want a 'bad' machine at skinflint prices. Because I think that, on average, they're the ones who are making the rest of us look bad.
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