Sears Higgins - Spaceliner? Date?

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Lorcan Otway

'Lil Knee Scuffer
Mar 2, 2018
12
64
Manhattan, New York, NY, USA
Hi Folks.
Higgins 028.jpg
As I said in my introduction post, I am restoring a Sears Higgins. It spent years in a truck back, which raccoons had gotten into, and was covered in raccoon excrement dust and rust. I carefully removed the rust and found really good metal under it, and even the chrome looks good once the rust was removed. I'm guessing the date at early sixties, and perhaps it is a Spaceliner. Still looking for photos to confirm that. Here is a photo of the bike and the serial number - for anyone who may know anything from that. Then a photo of the lights working - however that part of the restoration is not complete, as the switch does not work, so there is a temporary switch on the bike now, and the battery compartment is missing... The third photo, you can see the bare patches where the rust was. Any ideas on replacement paint is appreciated. I want to just touch up the bare patches and leave the 90 percent original paint.
I had it out on the street for a short ride yesterday, and it was like driving a vintage car - lots of nice comments and such. There is one odd rattle to look into, but, all and all, it was a good ride. It took me back to my childhood. From now on, it is the Sears for good weather and the Peugeot for bad.


Best to all,
Lorcan
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BrentP

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jun 26, 2010
374
Calgary, Canada via Marin Co. CA
www.facebook.com
Hi Lorcan. Your bike isn't a Spaceliner, or a Flightliner. When the Flightliner (J.C. Higgins branding) was phased out and the Spaceliner (new Sears branding) was introduced in 1964, Sears also created a model they simply called the Midweight, which is what this one is. It filled the niche below the higher end Spaceliner midweight (your bike first appeared in the Spring 1964 Sears catalog). A Flightliner would never have Sears branding on it (it would be J.C. Higgins) whereas yours has a Sears label on both the seat tube and head tube, as well as Sears branding on the chain guard.

I've never been able to determine a pattern in the serial numbers from Sears that reveals the production year, but you might be able to determine the year by looking at the date codes on the tires (if they are original Sears Allstate). Take a look at this guide that I wrote, that deciphers the date codes. https://www.flickr.com/photos/90887807@N06/36651041165/in/album-72157685301800743/
 
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Lorcan Otway

'Lil Knee Scuffer
Mar 2, 2018
12
64
Manhattan, New York, NY, USA
Hi Lorcan. Your bike isn't a Spaceliner, or a Flightliner. When the Flightliner (J.C. Higgins branding) was phased out and the Spaceliner (new Sears branding) was introduced in 1964, Sears also created a model they simply called the Midweight, which is what this one is. It filled the niche below the higher end Spaceliner midweight (your bike first appeared in the Spring 1964 Sears catalog). A Flightliner would never have Sears branding on it (it would be J.C. Higgins) whereas yours has a Sears label on both the seat tube and head tube, as well as Sears branding on the chain guard.

I've never been able to determine a pattern in the serial numbers from Sears that reveals the production year, but you might be able to determine the year by looking at the date codes on the tires (if they are original Sears Allstate). Take a look at this guide that I wrote, that deciphers the date codes. https://www.flickr.com/photos/90887807@N06/36651041165/in/album-72157685301800743/
Thanks so much! I'm sure the tires are rather new, there is no wear on them at all. Thanks so much for your help. All the best, Lorcan
 

Adamtinkerer

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Sep 8, 2008
3,754
Western North carolina
'46201' is the Sears catalog #, and this one appears in the spring/summer '65 edition, listed as a "fully equipped middleweight", selling for $35 and change, and a shipping weight of 51lbs.
 
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Lorcan Otway

'Lil Knee Scuffer
Mar 2, 2018
12
64
Manhattan, New York, NY, USA
'46201' is the Sears catalog #, and this one appears in the spring/summer '65 edition, listed as a "fully equipped middleweight", selling for $35 and change, and a shipping weight of 51lbs.
Adam! Many thanks. That seems to be the rest of the answer! Lorcan
 
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AndyA

Finally riding a big boys bike
Nov 24, 2017
120
71
bergen county
Lorcan:
Adam has it right. The catalog text is:
"Fully-equipped Midweight with lots of chrome. Streamlined swept-back 3-bar frame is metallic red for boys' blue for girls'. Shiny chrome-plated twin-bulb headlight is built into tank. Uses 2 "D" batteries (not incl.). 1.75-inch white-walls. Sturdy rear carrier and chain guard. Shiny chrome-plated fenders and rims add exciting sparkle. Coaster brakes."
Paint can be tricky but you could try Dupli-color 317 Currant Red. That matched the red on my 1960 Flightliner.
Smooth riding, Andy
 

Lorcan Otway

'Lil Knee Scuffer
Mar 2, 2018
12
64
Manhattan, New York, NY, USA
Andy:
Thanks so much. I was pretty sure, well... positive the tires were not original. New York streets are very tough on bike tires, so even if they were I'd have to replace them with ones which would stand up to the glass. As it is, after every ride, I examine the tires and pull glass or eventually the bits work through and puncture the tires. All the very best,
Lorcan
 
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