Saturday, July 23, 2011

1950 Schwinn Spitfie Rehab

Finished the Schwinn off today and delivered it to its owner. She was happy with the work and told me that she would dig up a photo of her and the bike when she first got it 61 years ago - that'll make for a sweet before and after.

 Here it is in its restored state with a market basket and all.

 My son's girlfriend takes it for a spin.

A happy customer!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Spitfire update 3

 Okay - as expected I have hit the hurry up and wait stage - have seat-post, new handlebars and a market basket that I am waiting  delivery on to finish up this re-build. But it is coming along pretty nicely. I've brought it back to my house after doing the frame work over at my dad's and have it pretty much back together - the wheels and tires are on and trued the crank has had it's bearing cleaned and repacked - a new set of pedals - a couple broken bolts drilled out and then re-tapped. I even took it for a seat-less ride last night. 

 Putting the first of many coats of blue - masked off head tube has already been painted white.

 Fenders blue as well - notice how dull the paint is. That is because it is a base coat clear coat process. First you shoot the color in three or four coats - then you shoot a second clear paint that adds the shine and deepens the basecoat color.

Here are the parts after clear coating.

And here is the state of things in my basement today.

And a before pic to see how far we've come.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Spitfire update 2

 Gravity feed spray gun.

 sanded and cleaned ready for a coat of primer

 just hangin' 'round my dad's garage



Okay - all primed now and ready for some base coat color. I was able to shoot back over to my dad's garage (he is the guy with all the top notch paint and air tools that make my metal shaping and painting pipe dreams possible) and get a  coat of white highlight on so barring flooding I should be painting the blue tomorrow and maybe even clear-coating in the evening. Still waiting on some parts to arrive - so I could be soon entering the hurry up and wait stage of this build.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Scwinn Spitfire Update

Steadily getting things done on the Spitfire rebuild. Receiving parts at regular intervals from UPS. While I am going to try and keep this thing looking as stock as possible I am more worried about making it a safe and dependable ride - so I am upgrading some components and refurbishing others.

The bearings, while dirty, are good quality and need only to be cleaned and repacked with some nice pristine blue goo but things like pedals and tires are being replaced with new but contemporary looking parts.

 Here's a some nasty looking wheel bearings before and after.

 This is probably the original grease - it looks like grasshopper chewing tabacco and is just as sticky.

 All stripped down.

 Some jobs have got to be done by hand and I've got a couple blisters to attest to this.

 With a little luck I'll be shooting primer on this thing in the next day or two.

Monday, July 11, 2011

November 17, 1950

Picked up a bike to restore today from a friend of mine’s mom. It has been hers all her life and we’re gonna see about getting it back on the road again. It’s an old Schwinn Spitfire. According to the serial number stamped on the bottom bracket (the place where the pedals go through) the little blue demon’s birth date was November 17, 1950 - a Scorpio. Still four more years until it would qualify for Medicare – and who knows what kind of shape that’ll be in by then – so we're gonna go ahead and treat it now.

Here's some before pics:

And here's the state of affairs this evening: