1942 Seiberling badged Colson lightweight

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Coopster

On Training Wheels
I wanted to share this story of a bicycle that coincidentally became sentimental while rebuilding. A guy had a trailer of 17 bikes for sale and all were 70’s/80’s bikes. He wanted to sell all of them and posted a group picture of them all in a pile and stated he must sell all as a group. I noticed this bikes rear stand and requested he sell just one. After haggling and getting it for nearly nothing, I got it home and inspected. The badge was caked with grease and that was the only indication of what it was so I was heading home not knowing what I had. As I cleaned the Seiberling badge I recognized the name. My wife and I had been married at the Seiberling Mansion in Indiana not knowing the connection between the Seiberling tire Company and Seiberling mansion. (Both related to Frank Seiberling) I had known the Seiberlings as they related to The Opalescent Glass company. By the time I had learned of the relation I had already had the bike in parts and awaiting parts to finish. The tires on it were the Goodyear diamond pattern 26x1.375 and I ended up finding pristine 26x1.375 Uniroyal rideable tires as well as correct 292mm/11 1/2 in NOS Torrington butted spokes (this is how it was laced) to finish it before the years end. I had really wanted to find a project after finishing my wife’s Huffy and when I found this bike I knew I wanted to fix it up just from seeing the stand. The guy said “of all these bikes you want this one?” I said “Yep this is it!”

I built this to keep it as a rider and keep what patina it has. I added wooden pedals that I fashioned from some scrap wood, wooden grips I made from a dowl rod stained with black tea and cocoa powder. The leather carrying handle I made from scrap leather and replaced the handlebars as I wanted a lower profile. I am keeping the bars and rubber portions of the pedals for later in case I change my mind. The New departure coaster brake was rebuilt as well as all other moving parts. I am still waiting for my rear reflector to come, and will eventually switch the saddle to an original or brooks. It rides perfectly and feels great to ride something that is related to where we were married.
As far as I can tell from the Serial and other research it is a 42 Colson badged as Seiberling. Serial is a rough 9543 with a D-2 under it. If anyone has a correction on the make please let me know as I am not well versed in lightweight bikes.
I’m glad to have found this bike and glad it gave me an extra goal in 2020 as an outlet to focus on the last few months, and now I have it dialed in right on the last day of my goal. Took it for a 2 mile spin around our flat road slow paced town and it was an absolute charm. I snapped some pics on my ride (here in Florida it is a nice 82 right now) and have some from before fixing it up:
Happy New Year!!
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Coopster

On Training Wheels
Nice work! I have a similar one that's been spray-bombed in blue. Been riding it as-is for now.

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Nice! I like the chain guard polished, my bike was originally a hunter green color, not sure if the guard was too because all paint has been stripped. Is the saddle a troxel? Also, are your tires 1.375 or are you using 26x1 3/8 s6’s?
 

Coopster

On Training Wheels
Finally found a nice patina yet usable and surprisingly comfortable brooks B66. Also added a cool flashlight and cheapo rear reflector until I figure out what kind of lamp or headlight to add!

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