Elgin Sewing Machine And Bicycle Company

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dnc1

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
MY GOD!!! Please...if that is indeed original paint & plating, PLEASE do not strip & "restore" this bike. It deserves to be preserved as much as possible. Put your feelers out and take your time finding the correct parts...or some close period pieces. I have never seen one of these, & I'm pretty sure most Cabe members are with me on that. WOW!!! I am in awe.... :eek:

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Oh ma gawd.

This is a beautiful machine. Very nice, congratulations.

Heck, I would leave the welded together crank arm on it, just part of it's story.

That frame is artwork.

Everything nicely fluted("corrugated") frame tubes and big ones at that! This may be a sort-of-clean-it but not much bike as there cannot be many. Even has an early 3-piece crank on it! Wheels, seat and grips aren't too much to ask for. Looks like no fenders needed either.

Very unusual bike with the fluted frame tubes. I agree with others, I would concentrate on "preserving" this bike and find period correct wheels, seat, etc. for it but do not "restore" it. I would not want to do anything that might remove any of that original paint.
Ditto to all of the above.
Beautiful bicycle!
 

Thumper59

'Lil Knee Scuffer
I was asked about frame size. It is a 24" frame. I'm just starting to look for period parts. This is NOT a poor man's hobby is it? Still hoping for period wheels and seat for around $1000. I think that's doable. So far everyone here says don't touch the paint, so without that cost it helps a lot. Advice on how and with what for clean up on the frame would be helpful as well. Thanks again for the help and information.
 

Blue Streak

Finally riding a big boys bike
I fully agree with comments so far as to not touching the paint/plating, and I think what they mean is do nothing to clean it up. At most I would use a feather duster or dry cloth to get any dust or cobwebs off but that is as far as I would go with it.

As for wheels, keep watching the CABE For Sale Section or post in the Wanted Section for a pair of matching aged (unrestored) set of wood rims, spokes and hubs (with or without 28" tires) for display only and make it look like a rolling bicycle again. Photo below shows a set of old wheels I had laying around and put on a frame I picked up. Having wheels will help keep the frame from getting damaged. I install 2" OD black rubber hose on some of my display bicycles to make them look better without spending a lot of money. Find a local commercial hose supply store, cut to length and put a smaller diameter plastic splice with screws in rubber hose (not into the rim) to hold the hose tight to the rim so you can roll it around.

Watch the CABE For Sale Section or post in Wanted Section for original seat or buy a Paul Watson replica. I would focus on making it look more complete for display for now and enjoy looking at it, then you can take the time to accumulate the parts needed to make it rideable if desired. Great bike!!

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Original typical period correct seat (saddle) or Paul Watson replica:
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cyclingday

Riding a '38 Autocycle Deluxe
I must admit, that this thread started with a whimper, but sure ended with a bang!
I saw the title a couple of days ago, and just glanced past it.
So, out of curiosity, I figured I’d take a look at see what was going on.
Holy Sh^*!
That ain’t no ordinary Elgin!
What a find!
A Colnago Master, about a hundred years prior!
Yeah, ditto to everything that’s been said already.
That’s a National Treasure, and may likely be the only surviving example of a Gunning with fluted tubes and bars.
Super lucky that the handlebar was still there.
Try finding that piece if it was gone.
I think this bike is best left as a very interesting collectors conversation piece.
Finding a set of Turn of the Century wheels and saddle for it, won’t be too difficult.
There are a few guys here, that specialize in that era, and I’m sure they can help you out, or at least point you in the right direction.
Very cool bike!
Thanks, for bringing it here for us all to see.
Go slow, and treat it, as if you just found the Mona Lisa.
Da Vinci would be proud.
 

Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
I too glanced over this thread without clicking thinking it wouldn't be that great. After reading the beginning.... Yeah someone found an Elgin bike and thinks it's worth a fortune. Well they all do. But then the pictures. OH THE PICTURES! What an amazing bicycle you have found. You have caught the leprechaun and if you ask you can get his pot of gold! To find it this complete you are very lucky. Congratulations! Most bikes should be ridden but I think this one needs period wheels seat and grips added (not necessarily nice enough to be functional) and displayed for viewing pleasure only. It looks as though the left pedal is missing..... Question for the TOC guys - is the right pedal "DSMCO"? Davis and likely correct for this bike? If so is finding another set or just a matching left pedal going to be difficult?
 

Thumper59

'Lil Knee Scuffer
I too glanced over this thread without clicking thinking it wouldn't be that great. After reading the beginning.... Yeah someone found an Elgin bike and thinks it's worth a fortune. Well they all do. But then the pictures. OH THE PICTURES! What an amazing bicycle you have found. You have caught the leprechaun and if you ask you can get his pot of gold! To find it this complete you are very lucky. Congratulations! Most bikes should be ridden but I think this one needs period wheels seat and grips added (not necessarily nice enough to be functional) and displayed for viewing pleasure only. It looks as though the left pedal is missing..... Question for the TOC guys - is the right pedal "DSMCO"? Davis and likely correct for this bike? If so is finding another set or just a matching left pedal going to be difficult?
Unfortunately the right pedal is Ideal brand and from what I see they didn't make those until much later.
 

Thumper59

'Lil Knee Scuffer
I am trying to get this Gunning back on it's wheels. The previously posted 1897 catalog specified brand names of parts on the Corrugated Gunning. With that I was able to start looking for original parts. It specified Plymouth or American brand, 32 spoke front, and 36 spoke rear rims. I now have an original front wheel, believe it or not one showed up on Ebay. It is a one piece Plymouth brand wood rim and in pretty good condition. Unpainted, with a good hub, axle and bearings, and only one broken spoke. How's that for dumb luck. I'll find the other parts too. (I hope) I also plan to buy a simple pair of old 26" rims and new cream or red tires to make it road worthy and give it a ride. My big problem now is what kind of brake hub to put on the rear wood rim when I find it. Not much I can find on line for brakes that date to 1897. Can someone here help with the right answer? The book does not specify the hub brand. It only says "large tubular hubs made from round solid bar steel". Does that mean they actually manufactured them, or was that a general description used at the time? Thanks for any help you can offer.
 

Blue Streak

Finally riding a big boys bike
Here are pages from 1897 Elgin catalog showing The Corrugated Gunning which was only sold as a 1897 model. Elgin catalog posted earlier in this thread is 1896:

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This would not have had a brake. Rear hub would have been fixed, single speed, like fixies today. I believe tubular hub refers to drum or cylindrical shape like in photo below. They probably made their hubs own being they had a factory that made both sewing machines and bicycles. Make sure thickness of sprocket on rear hub matches your chain. Should be either 3/16" or 1/4" thick. Also check axle size to make sure fits into fork holes and frame slots. Your Gunning is in such original untouched condition I would not ride it, clean it or take it apart, but find period correct, equally aged (patinaed) parts and enjoy it as a great piece of bicycle history. Thanks for sharing it on CABE.

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