View Full Version : Roadmaster Luxury Liners

05-26-2010, 12:11 PM
There have been several posts regarding the Roadmaster Luxury Liner model recently, some about the originals and some about the 1998 replica bikes. Iím collecting some information on the originals to post here and thought I would start a thread dedicated to the bikes.

I just posted pictures of Luxury Liner chain guard decals, clipped from the internet, in the gallery (check them out before the album drops out of the most recent listings!) to answer a question about how and when they were used originally.

From the original ads I have seen it appears that the early bikes did not have a chain guard decal. In 1952 the ads show the large white cursive decal similar to the one that was used for the 1998 replica. In 1953 the decal was changed to one with italic block letters. The Luxury Liner model was continued in 1954 but with significant changes and the last picture shows the chain guard decal for a 1955 Luxury Liner.

I am not a Luxury Liner expert but I hope that building a thread around the bikes on this forum will help bring forward pictures of survivors and increase everyoneís understanding of this significant Roadmaster and the of the changes and variations that were offered over the production run.

05-27-2010, 08:50 PM
The picture of the '53 chainguard is actually my bike. I'll try to get some pics posted by this weekend. I was wondering if you would be interested in collaborating with me on an article in the Classic Bicycle News about my Roadmaster to include a little history of the '48-53 Roadmasters and the transition from CWC to AMF. v/r Shawn

05-28-2010, 12:25 PM
Hi Shawn,

Thanks for the responce, I'm looking forward to the pictures of the 53 LL and would be happy to see what we could do regarding an artical for CBN. I'll PM you my contact info so we can discuss the project off line.

05-28-2010, 09:57 PM
Received your PM and will touch base with you tomorrow. I uploaded pics of my Roadmaster to the gallery. If you want the high quality ones let me know and when I can access more bandwidth--dial-up at the house--I will get them to you. v/r Shawn

05-29-2010, 08:23 PM
Here is my Luxury Liner that I believe is a 53

05-30-2010, 08:05 AM
Phil you rock.thanks for all the info you produce

05-30-2010, 08:17 AM
If we had a vintage bicycle organization, Phil would be President.

05-30-2010, 09:21 AM
This is the match to my boys bike! Yes I believe this is a 53--look at the serial number on the bottom of the crank hanger and it should have a "53" there somewhere. About a month ago a blue girls bike sold on the bay fo rmore than I paid for my boys bike! I believe the headlight off the 98 reissue would work for your bike. v/r Shawn

05-30-2010, 12:37 PM
Yes I believe this is a match for your mens luxury liner this one is for sale make me an offer on it.

01-16-2013, 06:59 AM
What ever happened to this project?

01-16-2013, 07:08 AM
Phil and I collaborated briefly about doing an article. As you can see by the thread there wasn't much input from others regarding info. It would be nice to get this started again but input is needed from those that have these early (1948-53) LLs. V/r Shawn

01-16-2013, 08:06 AM
I'm looking at buying one back East and I was trying to do some research and also trying to figure out what year it is and I ran across this thread. It seemed like it had a good head of steam and that's why I asked.

Any possibility of helping a guy date his soon-to-be purchase? The serial number under the crank is C44423 AC

Any help is greatly appreciated!!

01-16-2013, 10:35 AM
The serial # located underneath the crank hanger will give you the year. The differences in the years are primarily with the rack/tailight and decals. V/r Shawn

01-16-2013, 11:23 AM
Hi PHil this is awesome you started this thread on the Roadmaster luxury liner because i have 3 of them . None of them are replicas. They are original ones. I have 2 black and red ones and one Green christmas edition. Im going to try to post some pics of the bikes along with the serial numbers to the bikes and maybe i can finally find out the years to my bike. Thanxs again phil and keep up the good work.!:D

01-16-2013, 12:22 PM
The serial # located underneath the crank hanger will give you the year. The differences in the years are primarily with the rack/tailight and decals. V/r Shawn

The serial number is C44423 AC

01-16-2013, 02:26 PM
Big question for you Phil Marshall. I spent some time today looking at pics online today under google images. And yes i do see some change in the roadmaster luxury liner. If you go looking on the web you will see some wierd ones with the horn on the left side of the tank and the rear rack looks like the repop one . And there are some pics of original ones with the rear rack with those truss rods in the back sticking out , kinda looking like the front end of the bike . And with the horn on the right side of the bike . Very wierd maybe it was there way of knowing what year the bikes were?

01-16-2013, 07:52 PM
The serial number is C44423 AC

That's a 1950

01-16-2013, 08:14 PM
Awesome! Thank you!!

02-06-2013, 12:23 PM
So I've been deep in the trenches doing some investigative work on these creatures since I bought mine. This is what I've come up with so far....

-The CWC (or earlier style) made bike production ran from 1947-1953. AMF bought CWC in 1951 but the Luxury Liner continued to get the earlier styled CWC bike until and including the 1953 model year. In 1954, the Luxury Liner continued but was switched to the newer AMF style model.

Here is the earlier, CWC style:

And here is the later, AMF style:

You'll notice the the biggest differences are in the chainguard, the rack and the tank.

02-06-2013, 12:33 PM
In addition to that, I've found that the chainguards did not have any lettering on them up to and including the 1950 model year. 1950 was also the last year for the larger horn button located on the left side of the tank. The 1951 and later models had a smaller button that was located on the right side of the tank and instead of it being on the direct side of the tank, it was moved up towards the top of the tank.

The earlier 1947-1950 tank:

And the 1951-1953 tank:

02-06-2013, 12:41 PM
And lastly the rear rack...

The 1947-1949 rear rack looked like this:

You'll notice that the rear rack is flat when viewed from the side. They had a battery-operated taillight in them as did the later version but they appear thin and flat when viewed from the side. Also note that the rear rack brace takes a soft 90-degree bend and then goes straight up to the rack.

And in 1950, they changed to this style:

On this new style rack, you'll see that the support braces are different. They come up from the rear of the frame at a 45 degree angle and actually protrude out from the bike, much like the truss rods on the front. Most ads I've seen refer to these as "bumpers". Here's a Christmas ad that kinda shows how they protrude out.


Also with this newer styled rack, when viewed from the side, you'll notice that it has a "skirt" in the rear. This was designed to hide the taillight mechanism.

Here's another quick side-by-side comparison:

Earlier '47-'49............... Later '50-'53
83013 83016

02-06-2013, 01:03 PM
Some good info Greg. Hopefully we can see som more early, original examples. I believe the first ones used the pointed grips. I would also be interested to know what tires were original to these bikes. V/r Shawn

02-06-2013, 01:04 PM
The last thing I'll cover is what I've learned (or heard rather) about the differences between the classic style and the 1998 reissue. Now, I've not seen a reissue in person so I'm mainly listing what I've learned from people I've talked to. I'm sure there are some of you that either currently own or have owned one of these bikes that could either agree or disagree with the information I've gotten. Here's what I've got as far as differences go.

-The earlier bikes had a brass headbadge that was riveted to the headtube and they had painted details. I've talked to some guys that have said that the reissued bikes had stickers for headbadges and then I've also talked to some guys that said they had metal (or brass maybe even) headbadges but that they were screwed to the headtube instead of riveted.

-The spokes on the reissues were of a much thicker guage than the earlier bikes.

-Even though the bikes were built to depict the 1948 model, they got the horn-button wrong. They reproduced the tank with the '51-'53 style, right-side horn with the smaller button. They also put the lettering "Luxury Liner" on the chainguard which didn't show up until 1951.

-The earlier bikes had their serial number punched into the frame, right under the crank. The newer bikes just had a sticker placed there and no numbers punched into the frame.

-The earlier bikes had a skip-tooth chain and the reissues did not

-The reissued bikes were adorned with reflectors. One on the front, one on the rear, one on each wheel and the pedals.

02-06-2013, 01:06 PM
Well that's all I have for now. I hope this helps some of you. If anything is incorrect, please feel free to discuss what you've found. I'd like to keep this thread going until we are all loaded with information when it comes to these beautiful bikes!!

02-06-2013, 01:13 PM
Some good info Greg. Hopefully we can see som more early, original examples. I believe the first ones used the pointed grips. I would also be interested to know what tires were original to these bikes. V/r Shawn
Thank you Shawn. I'm also curious about the grips. Hopefully, somebody will have something more to ad.

02-06-2013, 01:18 PM
OK, I've got a repro (got such a good price I couldn't turn it down), the head badge is metal ( don't believe it's brass) and screwed on (Phillips screws). The bike is supposed to look like a '48 (has the flat curved rack braces), it has pointed grips, and the small horn button (right side, toward the top). The chain guard has a script decal (shouldn't have) and it does have the large gauge spokes. The bike rides so good I may keep it - most of the parts (springer, peddles, etc.) appear to be well made. On the bike I have there are some small areas of paint loss - I may end up repainting (can't hurt a repro) and doing away with the chain guard decal.....

02-06-2013, 01:26 PM
Awesome! Thank you for contributing! So there's a confirmation of a metal headbadge attached with screws. Anyone out there seen one that has a sticker instead?