This is a BEFORE photo of the rack on the bike as I got it. Any ideas as to who made it? The reflector is plastic and came on it, attached to the rivited piece on the back of the rack. BTW, it's all chrome...
Is your rear hub dated 47? Like the one posted above your post the serial number is hand stamped. I believe Schwinn started machine stamping the BB shell on these in 1948. My theory on these early Conti serials is they were stamped using the method used on the Paramounts. If my "theory" is fact the serial dates your frame to October 1947 and it was 171st frame made that month.
Let the record show that I am now the custodian of the burgundy 1946 Continental from Jim B. K7171
It is now at my friend, Greg Young's shop, Waterloo Bicycle Works, Waterloo, Iowa.
Greg is a pretty skilled mechanic and has actually used a Park Frame straightener before.
Yes, the frame has a slight damage from a front impact.I think this was discussed on another thread. We will probably have to BUILD such a tool. Unless I can find one somewhere.
But I will endeavor to get the damage minimized without much more damage to the original paint.
This K7171 fits right in with the other 1946es in that it has the undated S-A hub. Brakes and cables and levers are similar.
BTW, does anyone have a source for the black fabric covered cable housing?
It is sporting a 1955 Corvette saddle and that needs to find a new owner that treasures it more than me.
I intend to ride this thing and that means a REAL leather saddle. Likely Brooks or Ideale, slightly wider than the one fit to drop bar bikes.
And last, I seek an original front hub and possibly a real Schwinn period correct S-6 rim. It would not bother me too much to allow a modern rim and tyre to hold that space till the right original comes along.
Park made a tool specifically made to remedy the type of damage that was present on that frame - the HTS tool. It involved running a bar through the head tube, and then a jack-like apparatus pushed against the bottom bracket in such a way as to gradually correct the downward bends in the top and down tubes. This was back when Park also made the fork straightening jig and a few other tools for straightening steel frames that no longer exist.
One of the worst developments over the years was the disappearance of these tools, because a decent steel frame can certainly be straightened, within reason. But with the proliferation of aluminum and carbon frames, and with legal liability issues for the shops, the tools disappeared.
The frame and fork straightener sold by Park today is more a "frame arm" type device. What you're probably looking for is that older tool that screwed into the head tube and then was jacked against the bottom bracket. There is an HTS on sale on ebay for like $350, I think. At least last time I looked, there was.
The HTS tool is capable of producing immense force, to the extent it could tear soldered/brazed joints. But if you were working within reason, the tool could certainly straighten the frame angles back to normal.
Thanks for the picture.
There was one of those Park HTS tools at a local shop where Greg worked some years back.
I will make a nicer tool than that. And for a lot less money. Finding a fine threaded turnbuckle would be the main obstacle.
Not damaging the original paint further is paramount. (no pun intended, actually)
I have extensive experience in auto body straightening, shrinking/ planishing/metal finishing.
I'd have to decide if a little localized heat on the buckle while under tension might be a good idea. I believe there now exist modern induction heaters that will concentrate heat in a 1/4" spot.
Or maybe I should work it cold?
Still working out a plan.
Nice frame in your picture, by the way: Nervex lugs? Who is the builder?
I just picked this up a couple of hours ago! I'm thinking it's a '46 (first year of the Continental) due to the fact it has the sought-after dual neck like on the Aerocyles, etc. If I'm wrong, please let me know!
I wouldn't use the stem by itself to date these. I have 5 in the stable , mens and womens, and they all have the adjustable stem. BTW the fenders are stainless and the same as found on the Paramount tourist. They can crack if you tweak them too much.