A special project, a prewar Rollfast…

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Eddie_Boy

Finally riding a big boys bike
…for my granddaughter and me. Earlier this year, I picked up this 20” prewar Rollfast from @dasberger. Thanks Josh for making it happen. That was over 6 months ago, and a few projects between then and now, I’m ready to work on this project with my younger granddaughter, who is currently 7 years old. My granddaughters are already familiar with old bikes. Two years ago, I got them matching late 70s Schwinn Bantam 20” bikes. But it’s my younger granddaughter that really digs the old stuff, so this will be our first bike project together.

I bought this little gal because she is the junior of mine. She’s around the same year, same color, and has that same Snyder DP Harris fastback frame design, just a smaller version, which is so cool. These frames remind me of vintage motorcycle frames, which I’ve had in the past. Typically, along with our ’37 Rollfast, I’ve only cleaned and overhauled the mechanical components and left the bike’s cosmetic condition alone. The approach with this little one will be the same, make them look alike as best we can without changing much from their original condition.

These pictures taken by @dasberger
01 Rollfast Playcycle.jpg


03 Rollfast Playcycle.jpg


05 Rollfast Playcycle.jpg


08 Rollfast Playcycle.jpg


Matching Bantams.jpg

Matching Bantam bikes

Stingray Pixie and Bantam.jpg

The Schwinn Pixie Stingray on the left I bought back in mid 90s when my daughter was 5 years old, and now my daughter's girls are enjoying that same bike. All three of the kids bikes still has the original tires. Last two pictures taken 2 years ago.

Our '37 Rollfast Sport.jpg

"Levi" our '37 Rollfast Sport, the reason why I bought this little project bike
 
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Eddie_Boy

Finally riding a big boys bike
First, our granddaughter has named this little gal “Bluey” from the Australian animated show she and her sister enjoy. The show is about a family of Australian cattle dogs. The main character is a daughter named Bluey. The show illustrates funny yet good life lessons. Bluey also seemed appropriate since we named our Rollfast Levi. The connection to blue jeans led to Bluey.

As you can see, the wheels on this little gal are painted. Closer inspection, I see a little paint on the spoke nipples. I asked myself, “Did this come originally unpainted and one of the previous owners decided to paint the wheels, or did they paint to refresh the already painted original wheels? So I thought since it was clear that the wheels were painted by hand, let’s go ahead and remove the paint to match the wheels on our ’37 Rollfast Sport. Levi's wheels has that great natural patina’ d finish I dig. So that’s our plan.

Removed the guts from both wheels. This early rear ND hub I’ve never seen one before, a junior version of the standard ND Model D hub. It’s pretty cool. Not sure what the front hub is. Maybe a Torrington?

03a painted wheels.jpg


03b painted wheels.jpg

Original painted wheels or not?

03c ND Model D jr.jpg

Dig the speed lines on these small ND Model D brake arms

03d ND Model D jr.jpg

Nickeled plating?

03e ND Model D jr.jpg


03 wheel's original patina.jpg

Love the original wheels on Levi. Our hope is that Bluey's wheel's condition in the end will come out like this.
 
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Eddie_Boy

Finally riding a big boys bike
Started the process of removing the paint from the wheels. I still had some Goof Off paint remover left in a sprayer, but then I ran out after applying a second time. Looks like these wheels were originally painted; no sign of a chrome finish.

04 Removing paint.jpg


04a Removing paint.jpg

After first application of paint remover

04b Removing paint app 2.jpg

Sprayed on a second application

04c Removing paint app 2 result.jpg

Results after application #2. No visible chrome
 

Bru

'Lil Knee Scuffer
So, given your new understanding that the wheels where originally painted, I have a few questions for you concerning your restoration process...

1. In retrospect, would you have left the bad re-paint job on the rims?
2. What will you do going forward? Re-paint the rims or leave them unpainted?
 
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