Stearns rear-steer Tandem

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merkin_77

On Training Wheels
Newcomer here, but a real bike guy. I've rebuilt Sturmey-Archer 3-speeds, laced wheels, overhauled mtb suspension forks, and have fully-restored Schwinn middleweights. This came into my life and I'd love to tend to her but various other vehicles and obligations mean it'll be a while before there's time. Sooo, I'm looking for what this model was called, how to determine what year this is, and what it's ballpark value is because the rules are clear (and I get it) that the classifieds shouldn't be a fishing expedition. I'm just at a loss because this isn't my bailiwick, and there are so few of these that exchange hands that I'm having a hard time getting data points.

She's in reasonable shape - front wheel has rust/broken spokes and the rim has a big ding, but the hub is still smooth. Chain looks serviceable to me.

Thoughts? Thank you in advance!
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dfa242

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
That's a circa 1898 convertible tandem. See the attached for an original condition bike. There was a removable top bar on the front so it could be ridden in either a male/male or female/male manor. Values are all over the place so I'll let others provide you with their estimates.
 

Schwinn1776

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Welcome 😁👍 It sounds like you are off to a good start, you found the CABE! There's a ton of knowledge here. Good luck, that's an awesome project 😁👍
 

Craig Allen

Finally riding a big boys bike
Fantastic find! The Stearns bikes were referred to as the "Yellow Fellow" and this tandem was called the Stearns Combination Tandem.
Probably is 1898 although the 1899 model had a small round decal on the rear seat tube "American Bicycle Co. E. C. Stearns, N.Y." when they were merged into the conglomerate.
Here's a tandem I restored a few years ago dressed up with black and maroon pin striping all done by hand.
If you do some searching here on the Cabe, you'll find a ton of previous posts about the Stearns.
If you have the original chain, each link is stamped Stearns.
The rear crank assembly as I recall has right/left hand threads and is off center to oscillate as a chain tensioner for the front sprocket.

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manuel rivera

Finally riding a big boys bike
Newcomer here, but a real bike guy. I've rebuilt Sturmey-Archer 3-speeds, laced wheels, overhauled mtb suspension forks, and have fully-restored Schwinn middleweights. This came into my life and I'd love to tend to her but various other vehicles and obligations mean it'll be a while before there's time. Sooo, I'm looking for what this model was called, how to determine what year this is, and what it's ballpark value is because the rules are clear (and I get it) that the classifieds shouldn't be a fishing expedition. I'm just at a loss because this isn't my bailiwick, and there are so few of these that exchange hands that I'm having a hard time getting data points.

She's in reasonable shape - front wheel has rust/broken spokes and the rim has a big ding, but the hub is still smooth. Chain looks serviceable to me.

Thoughts? Thank you in advance!View attachment 1506575View attachment 1506576View attachment 1506577View attachment 1506578View attachment 1506579
Welcome! Interesting tandem.
 

locomotion

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Fantastic find! The Stearns bikes were referred to as the "Yellow Fellow" and this tandem was called the Stearns Combination Tandem.
Probably is 1898 although the 1899 model had a small round decal on the rear seat tube "American Bicycle Co. E. C. Stearns, N.Y." when they were merged into the conglomerate.
Here's a tandem I restored a few years ago dressed up with black and maroon pin striping all done by hand.
If you do some searching here on the Cabe, you'll find a ton of previous posts about the Stearns.
If you have the original chain, each link is stamped Stearns.
The rear crank assembly as I recall has right/left hand threads and is off center to oscillate as a chain tensioner for the front sprocket.

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that looks like a beautiful restoration, you nailed it
who did the pinstripping? it's absolutely perfect ....... incredible, WOW
as well as the paint color, can you share the paint code that you used for future reference?
@Craig Allen is that the front Stearns hub in your last picture? I have one of those and could not pinpoint the origin

for my personal knowledge, what material do you use to tied the spokes?
 
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Craig Allen

Finally riding a big boys bike
Locomotion,
With Envirocron powder coating color chart, RAL 1007 is a very close match but for my restoration I used U-Tech enamel. For a one quart can the formula is-
U-350 binder -382.8g
U-325 dark orange -4.7g
U-348 orange yellow -23.0g
U-100 white high strength-28.7g
U-437 yellow oxide- 64.5g
U-99 reducer -86.7g
U-450 medium yellow -131.9g

I did my own pin striping on this bike.
Yes, that is the correct Stearns front hub. Rear hub is the same arrangement except a larger diameter.
For the spokes, they are tied with thin gage wire and touched with silver solder.
 

locomotion

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Locomotion,
With Envirocron powder coating color chart, RAL 1007 is a very close match but for my restoration I used U-Tech enamel. For a one quart can the formula is-
U-350 binder -382.8g
U-325 dark orange -4.7g
U-348 orange yellow -23.0g
U-100 white high strength-28.7g
U-437 yellow oxide- 64.5g
U-99 reducer -86.7g
U-450 medium yellow -131.9g

I did my own pin striping on this bike.
Yes, that is the correct Stearns front hub. Rear hub is the same arrangement except a larger diameter.
For the spokes, they are tied with thin gage wire and touched with silver solder.
This is very valuable information to all. Thank you for sharing.
 
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