Klunker Build

Discussion in 'All Things Schwinn' started by Intense One, Feb 19, 2016.

  1. #1 Posted Feb 19, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Looking to build a Klunker style bike with a '65 Schwinn American frame with springer. Thinking about using S/A 3 speed tranny instead of running a 5 speed with derailleur. Any thoughts? Just in the thinking phase now............. Ray

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    #1 Intense One, Feb 19, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
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  2. #2 Posted Feb 19, 2016

    Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    Klunkers did not use springer forks if you're referring to the early mountain bike scene.
     
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  3. #3 Posted Feb 19, 2016

    I live for the CABE

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    Who cares if "they" didn't use springers? And, actually, they used whatever they wanted. I've seen vintage photos of klunkers with springers, since they probably tried everything they had laying around.

    Most ended up with a bladed fork and truss rods for strength, at least until bmx style cruiser forks became available, probably because of the weakness, mushy feel, and the way springers tend to wash out in hard corners.

    A modern klunker type bike can be anything you want.

    If you're gonna hit serious trails, I wouldn't go with the SA. Those three speeds have a tendency to shift on their own, or find "neutral," usually when you're putting the hammer down.

    But if you're just building a custom cruiser, do what you want.
     
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  4. #4 Posted Feb 19, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Good feedback, guys. Pretty much in the thought process. Mostly a "not for brutal use" bike. I have my F/S mtn bike for that!
     
  5. #5 Posted Feb 19, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Good info on the S/A.....Didn't think about the lurking danger of busting a nut or two and singing soprano when cranking down on a slipping tranny! You're right...back in the day there were no rules to follow....do a build with what you had in your personal inventory and go for it.
     
  6. #6 Posted Feb 19, 2016

    Finally riding a big boys bike

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    Other than the obligatory stripping away of anything extraneous and heavy ( fenders, racks, chain guard ..etc) a few of the classic accessories that spell Klunker to me are...motoX bars and levers, front drum brake, rat trap pedals, knobby tires, Brooks b72 saddle, tall seat post...maybe some gears, or maybe a kick brake and rear caliper brake coupled with the front drum for a real down hill Bomber ! (I grew up very close to Mt. Tam, still here).

    Of course, borrowing bits and pieces as you see fit is what it's all about !
    My number one favorite rider is a 1970 Heavy Duti that I took the front fender off, bobbed the back fender, threw a B72 and some old coke bottle grips on it. When the Tractors finally split, I picked up some sweet Pirellis ... It bombs like a dream !
     
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  7. #7 Posted Feb 20, 2016

    'Lil Knee Scuffer

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    I found Alan Bonds site to be a fantastic resource for Klunker history.

    Keeping that in mind, the original Klunkers were kids stripping down Newsboy Schwinn bikes and running them in the dirt. Moneywise and resource wise, I doubt they were running high dollar stuff!
     
  8. #8 Posted Feb 21, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Is always nice to see other folks building these fun bikes. I built mine about 4 years ago and never looked back, the bike is so much fun to ride.
    At first I was not sure if I would use one of my straight bar frames or one of my Dx frames, at the end I went with a Dx build.

    2011 misx 001.jpg

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    1941 schwinn dx klunker hybrid 021.jpg

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  9. #9 Posted Feb 21, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    If you want the versatility of a 3 speed hub, go with one of the new Sturmeys with the integrated drum brake. 3 speeds and a drum, pretty rad. 70mm is the standard version, the heavy duty one has a 90mm drum brake, which is awesome. Run a 90mm drum hub up front, you're good to go. Given, it'll take some doing to fit the hubs to the frame, spreading the rear triangle and such, but it's worth it.
    Cheers, Geoff
     
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  10. #10 Posted Feb 22, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Agreed...we kids were always on a tight budget and used whatever was available.
     
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  11. #11 Posted Feb 22, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Good info, Geoff.....I'm reverting to my young blood days when I had to use what's available to me, now. Of course, we as adults now can bend those rules a bit!
     
  12. #12 Posted Feb 22, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    And then if you want to really go all the way, pick up some alloy 26" hoops to lace the modern hubs up to. Some of the rims intended for use with disc brake hubs have a profile similar to the prewar drop centers. If you look into modern hoops, be aware that there's 36 hole and 32 hole versions, make sure the rim drilling matches the hub drilling.
    Cheers, Geoff
     
  13. #13 Posted Feb 22, 2016

    'Lil Knee Scuffer

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    I will have to check those out! I am running Ukia's on the bike, and have some S-2 hoops ready to be laced up!


    Have you put them up to any abuse? Sounds like a great set up!
     
  14. #14 Posted Feb 23, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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  15. #15 Posted Feb 23, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Would it be an easy fit to run an old 5 speed wheel with a derailleur on my American frame set?
     
  16. #16 Posted Feb 23, 2016

    I live for the CABE

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    You'll need a derailluer that can mount into the drop out, or weld a mount to the frame, or something. Not up to date on my derailluer technology, so not sure whats available.

    I've got an old (80's) suntour derailluer set up I keep eyeing for a klunker build, but it's on the back burner. I can only ride one bike at a time, and haven't tired of my '48 DX yet...

    20160209_162631.jpg
     
  17. #17 Posted Feb 23, 2016

    I'm the Wiz, and nobody beats me!

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    I have a 3 sp Sturmey Archer w/coaster brake, seems to shift, but doesn't seem to brake (just trying in vise and turning by hand). Paid $40 ish for but you can have just for shipping if you wanna mess with it, it's nice and clean, chrome, and has 36 hole.
     
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  18. #18 Posted Feb 23, 2016

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Sounds like a deal....messaged you on info. Ray
     
  19. #19 Posted Dec 8, 2017

    Wore out three sets of tires already!

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    Yep, SS baby... I'm in the middle of building a second one... Schwinn C-model frame.
    @Intense One
     
    #19 okozzy, Dec 8, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017
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