1941-42 "Harley" Columbia Westfield Bicycle Project


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alecburns

Finally riding a big boys bike
Apr 27, 2017
342
272
30
Northern Colorado
#1
Boy is this going to be a fun, miserable, excited, terrifying, terrific summer!

For those of you who remember, I rejuvenated a 1939 Westfield Built Sears collegiate last summer that has been my daily rider since. If you'd like to see that project you can see it's progression here:

This Westfield was the first old bike I ever got, and at first I bought it under the impression that the original rich blue paint had faded to a light baby blue mess. It wasn't until about a year into owning it that I discovered to my delight that the bike actaully had a thin layer of spray paint over the original finish, that turns out from all appearances to be almost 95% underneath the over-paint. Well classes are over and I am preparing to get started disassembling the bike. I believe the only thing not on the bike are the tank, and someone said the saddle was incorrect, but I wanted to get y'alls input first.

As for the paint, I got some graffiti remover today with high hopes. Sprayed it on, and nothing happened.... Then used concentrated simple green, and nothing happened.... Mineral Spirits, nothing happened... Acetone, Paint Stripper, nothing.... Looks like it's gong to be a long summer! If anyone has dealt with this before and has some tips, I'd greatly appreciate it. Not keen on using any abrasives besides a toothbrush.

If anyone is curious as to my plans for the bike, I only like to refurbish the bike. Take off the over paint, remove the rust, clean and degrease, repack the grease, relace the tires, reupholster the saddle and ride!!!

Should be good time.

Day I got it:


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Close up over over-paint:

IMG_0695[1].JPG
 

barnyguey

Riding a '38 Autocycle Deluxe
Apr 7, 2012
5,118
3,752
Rathdrum, Idaho
#2
Pinnell's sold several brands of bicycles with the Harley badge. They were also the first Harley Motorcycle dealer in town.
 

Balloonoob

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jan 24, 2019
448
683
35
Longmont Colorado
#4
Cool chain guard. Sounds like a thin layer of spray paint can be a real pain. Good luck.
 

alecburns

Finally riding a big boys bike
Apr 27, 2017
342
272
30
Northern Colorado
#7
Here's a photo update of the project. Boy.. this is a doozy. I tried Citristrip Gel, Acetone, Goof Off Graffiti remover & Mineral Spirits. They were eaither too volatile and unpredictable or didn't even scratch the surface. I settled on the tried and true method of #0000 steel wool with a mixture of simple green and WD-40 and a whole lotta patience. It was tricky trying to make a process where I didn't accidentally wear the paint down to bare metal. I have arrived at the method of drenching the steel wool and surface in the simple green/wd40 mixture and with very light pressure rapidly mixing the steel wool back and forth. I have been able to achieve very minimal wear damage through this process, although it takes nearly forever. Photo is the rear fender after about a total of 4-6 hours...

image1.jpeg


image2.jpeg


The first side I tried was the right side, which I think was positioned towards the sun for a large part of its life and had the most wear. It's equally confusing and frustrating not knowing which area you took it too far or that was already worn down. I curse whomever decided to paint this bike. I will not waiver or loose hope, however, and will see this project through to the bitter end!

P.S. - Any other advice is greatly appreciated!
 

Balloonoob

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jan 24, 2019
448
683
35
Longmont Colorado
#8
Wow. The level of commitment is admirable. Looks like a pretty cool color underneath. Should be a pretty cool ride once finished. Eventually we all will need to cross this bridge.
 

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