New to the site...with a new to me JC Higgins!! Can you help me with the year?

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motofly196

On Training Wheels
Mar 8, 2012
4
Hi, What a great site! I'm really into Air Cooled VW's, and my buddies have gotten me and the family into the vintage bicycle rides we have here in Spokane, WA. Through a trade, I acquired this J.C. Higgins from my friend. I know ZERO about vintage bikes, but have always wanted one to cruise around on. All I have for pictures are the ones from the previous owner (I'll be picking up the bike tomorrow), but it's killing me....I'd really like to know if anybody here can date the bike for me just from pictures? Should this bike have a skip-tooth sprocket/ chain? Thanks in advance for the help!

Scott

jchiggins-1.jpg


jchiggins2-1.jpg


jchiggins3-1.jpg


jchiggins1-1.jpg
 

yeshoney

I live for the CABE
Aug 8, 2007
1,499
Simsbury, CT
Welcome

Your Higgins looks to be in the mid 50's date. Post up the serial number. It is located under the crank/sprocket on the frame. Commonly referred to as the bottom bracket or BB.

joe
 

robertc

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Dec 28, 2009
745
61
Stoneville, N.C.
Welcome to the cabe. A very good start for your first vintage bike. Now you need to find one to match for your misses. By the way, probably not on the skip tooth for that aged bike. I agree with Joe on the mid 50"s.
Robert
 

frankster41

I live for the CABE
Dec 26, 2009
1,439
60
New Holstein, WI
I looked in the higgins book and cannot find your model in there. It looks like nice original paint. To me it looks like it is it would be between 54 and 57 someplace. There are some interesting features to your bike 1 the chainring looks to be made by monark. 2 the frame looks like a monark produced frame by the way the rear upper stays connect to the seat tube. 3 the chainguard is a different style than a typical Higgins. Maybe for a short time Sears bought bikes from a different vendor. Just my observations. All in All great bike and welcome to the hobby. frankster41
 

Adamtinkerer

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Sep 8, 2008
3,723
Western North carolina
It's a fairly uncommon Monark built JCH from the mid 50s. Might be an aluminum i.d. plate on the BB if it's 1954 or earlier, that can be year dated by the serial #. Or, it could have the Sears catalog # along with the serial.
 

motofly196

On Training Wheels
Mar 8, 2012
4
WOW! You guys really know your stuff! Thanks so far....and here's more. You were correct about the aluminum badge on the BB, here's a pic of that. I got the bike in my hot little hands today from my friend.....rode it around a little before the thunderstorms hit us. rear wheel needs some immediate attention...HUGE wobble! Other than that, just some whitewall tires, and it feels pretty sound. I'll still go through everything and freshen up the grease, clean/lube the chain. Thanks again for your quick responses!!

Model# 50545120
Ser# 0191031

Scott

JCHigginsbadge-1.jpg
 

Adamtinkerer

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Sep 8, 2008
3,723
Western North carolina
WOW! You guys really know your stuff! Thanks so far....and here's more. You were correct about the aluminum badge on the BB, here's a pic of that. I got the bike in my hot little hands today from my friend.....rode it around a little before the thunderstorms hit us. rear wheel needs some immediate attention...HUGE wobble! Other than that, just some whitewall tires, and it feels pretty sound. I'll still go through everything and freshen up the grease, clean/lube the chain. Thanks again for your quick responses!!

Model# 50545120
Ser# 0191031

Scott

JCHigginsbadge-1.jpg
The number 505 corresponds to a Sears code for Monark. Murray's is 502, the imported 3 speeds were 503. The number 4512, is a catalog # for a "Stanard Equipped" 1946 model. The serial also is a 1946 Monark #. I'm surprised it's that old, I guess there was a huge postwar demand for new bikes, and Sears looked to other sources! Also, the catalog page shows an illustration of a Murray built bike, which is typical, they built the lion's share of JCH bikes. It sold for $39.95.
 

motofly196

On Training Wheels
Mar 8, 2012
4
Adam...thanks for the great information! I'm stoked! For some reason 1948 was in my head....but 1946, that's sooooo cool! So knowing that...the crank/ sprockets look correct? I have a Sturmey/ Archer 3 speed hub on a rim I was thinking of adding for the vintage cruises. A co-worker (who rode these bikes as a kid) says that a 2-speed kickback would be easier to mount...but maybe harder to find these days?
The front fender has 2 holes in it...I'm assuming a headlight. Now I don't want to go too crazy with this bike (I'm sure everybody says that at first, huh?) but what style of light would of been mounted there? A batwing?
And the rear fender has one hole...would any glass reflector work there? Thanks again! I can't wait to learn more about these cool bikes and they're history, any good books out there for beginners?

Scott


front fender
frontfender-1.jpg


rear fender
rearfender-1.jpg
 

bricycle

I'm the Wiz, and nobody beats me!
Nov 18, 2009
22,674
Chicago area west
The stem is newer....1960's-80's style. Nice shape for a 1946!!!! Welcome to the CABE!!!!
 

motofly196

On Training Wheels
Mar 8, 2012
4
Cool, thanks for the input! I'm kinda glad to hear that the stem is wrong...because when I flipped the bike over to get the pic of the BB, the stem bolt fell out! I was thinking....great, I bet the innards are frozen solid inside the headset! So...I'm on the hunt for a mid 40's era stem. Pictures are worth a thousand words to me...I need to find some kind of book with era correct bikes and parts. What are the distinct differences for a 1940's stem?

Scott
 
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ramito

Finally riding a big boys bike
Sep 8, 2010
138
San Juan, Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico
,,,the cabe,,,my class room,,lol

I'm from PR .. (PUERTO RICO),,, something wonderful was to find THE CABE,,, is a University to the bikes we love,,, THE CLASSIC,,,. Currently working on three projects, MONARK AND SCHWINN .. Thank you for your guidance ...,,. EXCELLENT. GOOD LUCK. NICE JC HIGGINS,,,
 
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