Vintage rims

Discussion in 'Wheels, Brakes and Suspension' started by KevininPa, Dec 29, 2018.

  1. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    So what does everyone think of vintage rims. Haven't built anything yet. Acquiring parts, planning and researching at this time. Found two bikes that I want to build on. '53 Schwinn cruiser and as near as I can guess through researching, a '40s -'50s JC Higgins (Elgin) cruiser.

    These bicycles weigh a ton. Heavy duty. So what about the rims? Are they worth using in a wheel rebuild? One thing I learned in my 57 years is that the older stuff is built more heavy duty and tougher than anything newer. I noticed the differences between these two bikes and a newer '70s JC Higgins l picked up. Would really love to reuse the older JC Higgins rims. They're so cool!

    The build I'm planning is Sturmey-Archer drum Dynohubs on the fronts and Sturmey-Archer drums (possibly three speeds) on the rears. 79cc Predators which will rarely break 30 mph.

    Total noob but mechanically inclined. Work maintenance at a factory. Recent promotion makes this hobby possible. Will still take awhile due to working on two builds at once. Don't plan on being done for a at year and a half at the soonest.

    Thanks in advance for any responses.
     
    #1 KevininPa, Dec 29, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2018
  2. curtisfox

    curtisfox Well-Known Member

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    Old Schwinn's had double wall rims,good and strong, think up till the 60's, only thing would be to change the spokes to 12 Gage. Can't go wrong with the older bikes. But there are a lot of guys using mountain bikes, the china engines fit good in there triangle. I like the older bikes myself, probably the fact it's what i grew up with.........Curt
     
  3. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    Thank you Curtis. This is information that I'm glad to hear. The only concern that I have now is that the Dynohub takes 13g spokes. The options that I can think of is to drill out the spoke holes a shade or see about the possibility of some sort of custom spoke. The drilling part is scary due to possibly compromising the integrity of the hub. Have been reading a lot about spokes lately, if I don't cheap out I might be able to get some pretty strong 13g's.

    If I were using 50cc or less I wouldn't be as concerned. But I want the 79's due to some steep grades around here. And in Pa we're not permitted a jack shaft system. With some more research, I'll figure it out.
     
  4. curtisfox

    curtisfox Well-Known Member

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  5. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    Same in PA, no shifting. Looked at Lynn's wheels. Might go that route for the wheels. Still may have to settle for 13g's for the front dyno-hub.
     
  6. curtisfox

    curtisfox Well-Known Member

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    13 gage is light, higher the number the smaller the wire, 10 would be the heavy ones. There a lot of guys here on the forum that have drilled out the hubs for heavier spokes, and would not be that much bigger size wise.

    So you should be able to use jack shaft as long as you don't shift, or change gears. Would make it easy to get gear ratio right, with ability to change sprockets or pulleys. .........Curt
     
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  7. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    Hadn't considered a jackshaft with a single speed. Not a bad idea. Would look cleaner. For the sake of not having to explain anything to the local constabulary, might go with the adapters. That plus I'm a noob, might be better off with the KISS theory of manufacture for now. Also want geared hubs in the event of possible motor malfunctions. Ever since Arthur moved into the knees and hips I have to plan ahead for some things.

    Thanks for letting me know about others drilling out hubs. I would like to go to at least 12's, preferably 11's. I will know when I purchase the hubs and see how much meat is on them.

    I do want to thank you again for all of the assistance. It's greatly appreciated.
     
  8. bairdco

    bairdco a guy who makes cool bikes

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    I've drilled Sturmey FXDD hubs out to 11g. No problems.
     
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  9. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    Heh-heh, funny that you reponded (thanks for that BTW), finished reading one of your threads about Dyno hubs this afternoon. Saw that you were drilling them with no problems. My plans are getting more set in stone.
     
  10. Venice Motor Bikes

    Venice Motor Bikes Custom Builder / Dealer/Los Angeles

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    Just buy a good set of heavy duty steel wheels that already have 12 gauge spokes (instead of re-spoking old wheels)... it's gonna be a lot less expensive this way.

    They're strong, inexpensive & can be painted (or easily rusted) to match your vintage bike.



    Also... The coaster brake hub that comes on most of them will work with 99% of the hub adapters out there! (^)

    edit... Another thing to consider is that vintage wheels usually have only 28 or 32 spokes... (you're gonna need a rear wheel with 36 spokes to attach the new sprocket)!
     
    #10 Venice Motor Bikes, Jan 1, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
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  11. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    Venice, thanks for the heads up, didn't think to count the spokes.

    Curtis, I've been on that site and Lynn's. A lot of good options.
     
  12. bairdco

    bairdco a guy who makes cool bikes

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    Almost every vintage 26" wheel I've had is 36 spokes. Most 24" are 32 or 28.

    But you already have the rims, so...

    Husky has 12g for a good price. So, buy some spokes, drill your rims and hubs out, and lace 'em up. Great way to learn a new skill.
     
  13. KevininPa

    KevininPa New Member

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    I'm leaning that way bairdco. I've repaired and built many things at work and home with manuals, how-to books and of course, YouTube. Will have the local cycle shop make sure it's true and wellbuilt.

    Enjoyed your electrical thrread. Planning on the sturmey archer 90 mm 6v 3 watt dynohub with a pitbike rectifier/regulator and a sla battery. I can be more elaborate because the plan involves ammo can sidebags.
     

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