~ ~ ~ 1943 Huffman/Dayton Military Bike Found! ~ ~ ~

Discussion in 'Military Bicycles' started by Krakatoa, Apr 6, 2017.

  1. #21 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Hi Rustjunkie.

    Actually, that's a very fair question. I hadn't noticed the saddle on the Huffman bike illustration before you pointed it out. (Sorry).

    The parts book says that the issue saddle is a Persons 1352W in russet brown (saddle stem, incidentally, is 'Straight, 5/8ths Inch by 9 Inch).

    For the saddle, I suggest that the parts books are all Westfield, I am not aware of a Huffman one so:

    Perhaps the Mesinger saddles were fitted to Huffmans as standard? We would need more original photos, or a Parts Book to help demonstrate that. However, it is interesting that one has appeared with this frame.

    Perhaps Mesinger saddles were fitted to some Huffmans and Columbias as a 'Substitute Standard' when the Persons was not available? This happened with other military vehicles, since 'Parts is Parts' and getting a usable item out of the door was important.

    Perhaps the early (curved frame) Huffman illustrated is preproduction, and not fitted with the correct saddle? We know that catalogue illustrations of the period did not necessarily match the production bike.

    Do Huffman have a history of using Mesinger saddles?

    I would welcome any comments or other ideas on this, especially examples of Huffmans with the Mesinger saddle originally fitted.

    Thanks,

    Best Regards,

    Adrian
     
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  2. #22 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks, Adrian, have you seen the Army Technical manual that the picture I posted above came from?
    It would be great if someone could share the entire document.

    Here's a US Army Signal Corps picture I found after a very short search. It shows a Huffman with a Mesinger saddle, photo taken 1942:

    http://www.theliberator.be/militarybicycles.htm

    [​IMG]

    huffman mesinger.JPG
     
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  3. #23 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Just found these Torrington 8's with wood blocks in an old for sale thread here. Darn, I'm three years too late!!!:oops:

    Anyone have another set?

    pedals badges 002.jpg

    pedals badges 004.jpg
     
    #23 Krakatoa, Apr 7, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2017
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  4. #24 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    I live for the CABE

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    My 2 cents on war bikes.
    I get the whole 'rare for WWII' etc But these bikes do absolutely nothing for me.
    Plane jane 'base models' with some "military only" appointments...
    yawn!
    I do respect that they were a unique window in bicycle manufacturing during the 'big one'...
    but again...
    >yawn< to military bikes...
    my 2 cents
     
  5. #25 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Great bikes from a historical perspective and also great riding totally solid downhill bombers. They track very well on fire roads, trails, etc...
     
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  6. #26 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Finally riding a big boys bike

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    I yawn about a lot of bikes but I generally keep that to myself :).
     
  7. #27 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Riding a '37 Fleetwood

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    sort of like Cantilever Schwinns, they made them for 80 years! double yawn!
     
  8. #28 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    I live for the CABE

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    -----not knockin the brand.... or the frame design... just >yawn< basic bike that goes for cray $ because
    Yippee!!! World War II association.

    Maybe if something unique was manufactured for the war effort? ok...
    but these are basic 'el strippo' ballooners with a couple of mods and some drab green paint..

    and ....hey ok ....I was a 'war freak' when i was a little kid...played army etc. i get it....sorta...?
     
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  9. #29 Posted Apr 7, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Hey guys lets keep this thread going in a positive way. This bike is a piece of real history, it wasn't designed to be flashy but to do an important job. Please keep it to information only.

    thanks,

    Nate
     
  10. #30 Posted Apr 7, 2017

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  11. #31 Posted Apr 8, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Hi Rustjunkie,

    thanks for starting the search. I would have done, but I'm quite a few hours ahead of you, so our last convo was at Midnight for me, and I was turning into a pumpkin. (-:

    I've seen the signal corps photo before, but confess to never having looked at the saddle. So, it knocks one theory out, unless it's the same bike (highly unlikely) the one in the manual is not a 'one off'. So, I'm persuaded that the Mesinger saddle was fitted to Huffmans at least some of the time. Which is great, we are learning new stuff. (-:

    The modern photo's are less convincing (though not to be ignored), since the saddle had 70 years to be swapped by that point. It is interesting that both bikes are early curved downtube versions. Nate's is a very late straight tube one. If we can find a straight tube original photo with the mesinger saddle (difficult, given the dearth of original pics of bikes in general, and then having the right angle to see the saddle and chainring) I will be more convinced it happened throughout production. But I'm getting there, especially with Nate's saddle remains. Of course, this could have come from an earlier Huffman, or an entirely other bike, (I don't know how common this type of saddle is), but it seems appropriate at least for an 'as used' bike, and may be appropriate for an 'as made' bike.

    Nate, is there any sign of green paint on the saddle frame? Rustjunkie, do you know if these saddle frames were originally chrome? If yes, and this one is not chromed, it indicates war period, either Military or Blackout.

    If anyone has original pics of Huffmans or Westfields with either saddle they'd like to add, please do so.

    The Huffman image comes from (at least) ORD 7-8 SNL G-519 of July 1949 (though I'm sure there were earlier ones)

    https://photos.smugmug.com/Hobbies/MILITARY-BICYCLE-MANUALS/i-9gSW7Sj/0/XL/ORD 7-8 SNL G-519-XL.jpg

    (Image from Handcartz).

    I don't have an original (pity), but reprints of them can be bought here... http://www.robvanmeel.nl/?q=content...-ord-7-8-snl-g519-1943-1949-poor-quality-55-p

    Nate, the manuals are useful (despite the comment 'poor quality', since they go into detail on parts (though, apparently, for Westfield more than Huffman).

    Also, the SN picture above illustrates the yellow/green primer used on Huffmans.

    Have a Good Weekend,

    Adrian

    If it is still of interest, I will scan the page early next week.
     
  12. #32 Posted Apr 8, 2017

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    Thanks, Adrian, the recent picture is of a bike that belongs to @Craig Johnson. To me the bike and saddle look orig. The leather looks like russet and the chassis is OD. We can't see if it has the tool bag loops though.

    IMG_6651.JPG IMG_6652.JPG

    I've not seen Mesingers of this type with chrome chassis, but chrome plated springs were available. All the chassis I've seen were originally painted black or OD.

    There are 2 OD Mesingers saddles here, both have tool bag loops (not common for this saddle from what I've seen), threaded rear spring rods, and are painted yellow (zinc chromate?) primer over bare metal, then OD on top. Note: one saddle shown in the pictures has a later light black spray paint to part of it. The wear tabs are present on this one and are painted OD.

    IMG_6654.JPG
    IMG_6622.JPG
    IMG_6624.JPG
    IMG_6626.JPG
    IMG_6628.JPG
    IMG_6630.JPG
    IMG_6632.JPG
    IMG_6634.JPG
    IMG_6636.JPG
    IMG_6638.JPG
    IMG_6640.JPG
    IMG_6642.JPG
    IMG_6644.JPG
    IMG_6646.JPG
    IMG_6648.JPG

    Here's another Huffman wartime bike that was found with a Mesinger of this type on it:

    http://g503.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=239326&start=45#p1402344


    This bike and saddle appear to be a repaint with distressing on the saddle chassis. I can't say for certain but it looks that way to me.

    IMG_6653.JPG
     
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  13. #33 Posted Apr 8, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Hi Rustjunkie,

    Thanks for the detailed photos and analysis.

    Yes, I'm convinced that these saddles were issued for Huffmans, and although I've still not seen enough to be sure they all had them, I think there's enough evidence to say they are appropriate for a Huffman restoration.

    I'm away from my references until next week, but I'll have a look through the known survivors to see if there;s any more evidence one way or another.

    Best Regards,

    Adrian
     
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  14. #34 Posted Apr 9, 2017

    Finally riding a big boys bike

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    #34 johan willaert, Apr 9, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2017
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  15. #35 Posted Apr 10, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Hi Johan,

    as you can see from my posts on the saddle above, I had assumed that all the parts listed in the parts book were correct for both makes, it becoming apparent to me later that the listing is for Columbia parts, and so not necessarily correct for functionally identical parts from other suppliers used on the Huffman.

    My mistake, which I should have guessed from my previous experience of the different suppliers of functionally identical parts for Ford and Willys jeeps.

    Is there a listing anywhere of known differences?

    The frames, certainly.
    The mudguards
    The saddles
    The saddle stems
    I read on G503 that the stand can be different, could anyone confirm this?
    Anything else?

    Thanks,

    Best Regards,

    Adrian
     
  16. #36 Posted Apr 10, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Hello everyone,
    Nice find.
    First off. The seat post that came with this bike appears to be correct for the Military Huffman. It should be a hollow tube that narrows at the top as the one in question. I have two Huffmans , one of which I know the history from its use in Egypt during WWII until the present, and both use the same seat post as this one. The straight solid post referred to above by Mercian was used on Columbia Military models and was also smaller in circumference then the Huffman post. Also, the rims on the Huffman in question ( I call them drop side rims) were in fact used on some Military Huffman's. Again, my Huffman used in Egypt has those types of rims and a picture of my Huffman taken in Egypt during late WWII shows these type drop end rims. Of course my rims contain 10 gauge WWII spokes. The mesinger sliding rail seat was used on some very early 1942 Huffmans and an occasional latter dated Huffman. Those Mesinger seats came with built in tool bag hanger tabs on the lower seat pan and the one above does not appear to have them and since the Huffman is late 1943 it most likely came with a Persons Military seat.

    Regards,
    Bill
     
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  17. #37 Posted Apr 10, 2017

    Moderator Staff Member

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    howdy @HUFFMANBILL this bike also shown above is a 1943 from what I gather, and was found with a Mesinger:

    http://g503.com/forums/download/file.php?i.d.=56331&sid=144572e2362469d85b045c1e3a29abe9
     
  18. #38 Posted Apr 12, 2017

    Look Ma, No Hands!

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    Like I stated later Huffman's have on occasion shown up with the Mesinger seat. I am familiar with this particular bike.
     
  19. #39 Posted Apr 19, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Little by little....

    Think I may have found a source for some correct rims....

    Rustjunkie has his beautiful (gulp) saddle I'm going to try and get when I can afford it.

    Getting this guard from New Mexico Brant~ Thanks so much!

    So I'm still on the hunt for a correct date coded Morrow monster spoke rear cb and Eclipse front hubs!

    Then the real fun can begin.....

    unnamed (1).jpg

    unnamed (2).jpg

    unnamed.jpg
     
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  20. #40 Posted Apr 21, 2017

    Finally riding a big boys bike

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    FWIW My 1942 Huffman D50546 in original condition was found with a Persons saddle... See attached picture...

    D50546 (9).jpg


    Craig Johnson's D51646 ( bike shown above) is slightly higher numbered and came with a Messinger...

    So clearly both types were used...
     
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