How about a Spitfire 5?

blacktop_sailor

New Member
May 21, 2008
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Round Rock, Texas
I recently found a bike languishing in my fathers garage that I thought might be a good platform for me to finally jump into motorized biking.
The tires are dry-rotted and need to be replaced, and it needs a good thorough cleaning, but other than that it's not too bad. There's very little surface rust, and everything works, and check out those fenders, they're nearly pristine.
This thing is about 30 years old, and built like a tank.

Problem is, I'm having trouble deciding on a kit.
None of the 4-strokes seem to come with a drive sprocket that will work on the Drum Brake rear wheel.
I like the looks of Pablo's/Ghost0's jackshaft design, but it seems to just be for the 2-strokers.

Am I just out of luck? :|

Here's the bike, sorry I haven't had time to clean it up yet.





And here's the rear wheel that's giving me so much trouble trying to find a sprocket that'll fit it.

 

blacktop_sailor

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May 21, 2008
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Round Rock, Texas
That's what I was afraid of.

Being as I'm such a cheap barstard though, I'll probably just either settle for a rackmount, or try to work some kind of jackshaft.
Besides, I really like the drum brake, it stops really well, and smoothly. ;-)

I wonder though, if I could fit a belt drive onto a Skyhawk primary drive...
 

nogoodnic

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Jan 29, 2008
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Shelby MI
forum1.freakbikenation.com
Nice bike, I had a very similar Cruiser 5 a few years back, they are awsome riders. These bikes have industrial wheels on them that work great for motorized bikes but with the drum brake, I don't think you can run a sprocket. I like Joe's idea of running a belt drive swapping out the rear wheel is also an option but will be hard to match the wheels....Kelly
 

ran49

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Mar 5, 2008
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So.In.
Now thats a sweet bike.I bet who ever last road it was nicknamed "Daddy long legs"I'd need a ladder to get in that saddle.Can't blame you for looking at the 4 cycles,No doubt they're more reliable and smoother.It just that you look like your coming back from the store with a new bread maker strapped on your rear rack.These old cruiser frames really lend themselves to a frame mounted 2 stroke from an aesthetic point of view.But thats just me.Ron
 

blacktop_sailor

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May 21, 2008
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Round Rock, Texas
LOL, the previous rider would be my Dad. Yep, we're both 6'4" with 38" inseam. ;-)

I agree, I wouldn't want to put a rackmount on this baby, I'll have to figure out a way to get a 4-stroker like the SkyhawkII into the frame, but the kicker is that drum brake on the rear.
I'm not willing to give the drum up just yet, in fact I'd probably want to try to add a Sturmy-Archer Drum/Generator hub up front to match it.
That way I could run a light package for night time riding.

I just need to meditate more, the answer will be revealed to me in due time.
I'd rather take my time and do it right, than rush it and have to re-do it all later.
 

blacktop_sailor

New Member
May 21, 2008
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Round Rock, Texas
That's a very good idea cityvader, I hadn't thought about using go-kart parts.
Thanks.


Now I have another issue. I did some minor cleanup and adjustment (i.e. no-disassembly) to try to get the 'ol Spitfire rideable, and now I'm torn.
It cleaned up so nicely, that now I'm almost loathe to alter it.

It still needs new tires, and a new set of cables would be a good idea too, but now I'm thinking It's in such nice condition, I might leave it stock original and ride it around as is, unpowered.
Now I'm considering powering my GT Ricochet instead, which gives me some more options as far as engines and mounts go, disc brakes become an option as well.

Anyway, here's the Spitfire all cleaned up, what are your thoughts/opinions?
Should I motorize it anyway, or leave it original and motorize the GT?




 

nogoodnic

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Jan 29, 2008
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Shelby MI
forum1.freakbikenation.com
I would guess from the seat height that you are fairly tall. You won't hear me say this very often but I think the mtn bike would probably be more comfortable for you. I personally like cruisers and your Schwinn is very nice but I feel you will be cramped on it. Just my opinion...Kelly
 

dag_29307

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Jul 1, 2009
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Enoree, Sc.
I know I'm a noob to this but I am also a minor nostalgia buff. I personally think you should leave the classic just that a classic. You have the option to do the other bike and you will kick yourself later if you do the work on the classic and don't like it. So why not moto the MTN bike and have the best of both worlds, A classic you don't see very often and another moto bike you can tool around on this way your satisfied all the way round.

Good Luck Either way.
 

blacktop_sailor

New Member
May 21, 2008
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Round Rock, Texas
That's pretty much the same conclusion I came to myself after I got done restoring the bike as much as I could.
It just looked so pretty, and practically brand new again, that I just couldn't bear to do any modifications to it.

I'm currently installing a NuVinci hub on the GT Ricochet, and once I get it dialed in how I like it, I'll be adding a Scooterguy/Dax combo to it for maximum effect. :D

If you'd like to see some pics of the bike after I got it restored, I can post them, but truthfully, I don't know how much of the difference between "Old and Busted", and "New Hotness" will show on the internet, you kind of had to see the bike in person to appreciate how well it cleaned up, and has stood the test of time. ;-)
 

2door

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Sep 15, 2008
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Littleton, Colorado
Blacktop,
As much as I like motorbikes and want to throw a motor on everything I see, I'd have a hard time doing anything with that beauty except riding it....as is. What a pretty old bike. Keep us informed of your decision. How big is your fireplace mantel?
Tom
 

Finfan

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Aug 29, 2008
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Tucson, AZ USA
I have no idea how it could be done but an old style belt drive would be really cool on that! Check the Whizzer section there might be some ideas floating around! I have a front drum brake now and I wonder how I survived without it!