The Ultimate Sears Spaceliner Reference


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Bike Mike

Look Ma, No Hands!
Sep 26, 2017
90
254
54
Fullerton, CA, United States
Mike, I'm not familiar with the spaceliners, but very familiar with the Bendix kickback 2 speeds. I didn't see any of your posts as to what year you have but if you want to make it correct 60 -64 would be a red band, 65 - 70 would be yellow. Either will work, same gearing in both but some of the internal parts are different. The 2 speed parts wont go inside the single speed hub so you will have to re lace the wheel,... and probably need a different length spoke. And yes you can test it in your hand. If its not to gummed up hold the brake arm and spin the sprocket. Watch to see how fast the hub is spinning. Now spin it back like applying the brake then forward again. The hub should spin faster or slower depending what gear it was in. Lots of info out there on the bendix 2 speed kickback hubs, you'll probably find more in the Schwinn forums.
Just got this hub in the mail today and my bike is currently at the shop. So...i reckon ill have it respoked into the original rim. It doesnt spin fast but when i turn the gear the other way its a lower gear. It probably needs to be regreased. They charge $75 labor and a $1.00 a spoke.

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BrentP

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jun 26, 2010
343
93
Calgary, Canada
www.facebook.com
Just got this hub in the mail today and my bike is currently at the shop. So...i reckon ill have it respoked into the original rim. It doesnt spin fast but when i turn the gear the other way its a lower gear. It probably needs to be regreased. They charge $75 labor and a $1.00 a spoke.

View attachment 691647

View attachment 691648
Looks like a nice bike. I hope the stand clamp doesn't damage the decal... they're very fragile.
 
Jun 23, 2016
14
16
58
Little Rock, AR
How about this bicycle trick?

Today Sunset with Big Rock cliffs in the background
1964 Space Age SPACELINER SHIELDS UP
SET PHASERS TO STUNNING
SPACELINER Gleaming Sunset Big Rock Cliffs 10-25-2017 X.JPG

Space Age space jet like F-86 Saber Jet and THE JETSON’S.
Lights & horn working. BeEp! bEeP!
(Photos unaltered just chrome frame at different angles like a mirror in Sun.)
Cool bicycle trick?

---=MGB=---
 
Last edited:

Bike Mike

Look Ma, No Hands!
Sep 26, 2017
90
254
54
Fullerton, CA, United States
How about this bicycle trick?

Today Sunset with Big Rock cliffs in the background
1964 Space Age SPACELINER SHIELDS UP
SET PHASERS TO STUNNING
View attachment 697954

Space Age space jet like F-86 Saber Jet and THE JETSON’S.
Lights & horn working. BeEp! bEeP!
(Photos unaltered just chrome frame at different angles like a mirror in Sun.)
Cool bicycle trick?

---=MGB=---
Very cool bike. It looks good at any angle
 

BrentP

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jun 26, 2010
343
93
Calgary, Canada
www.facebook.com
Hope you don't mind me asking on this thread. I could use a Spaceliner fix showing off yer accessories on yer Spaceliners...please
The only accessories I have on my Spaceliner are flashing, bullet, valve covers. When the wheels rotate, the LED bulbs inside will flash like strobes. It's pretty cool, and seems appropriate for the Spaceliner.

Bullet valve cover.jpg
 

marching_out

Finally riding a big boys bike
Apr 3, 2017
176
303
51
Warsaw, USA
Been meaning to post this info for a while. I finished an abbreviated restore of my wife's Spaceliner earlier this fall and learned some new tricks. Both battery containers were shot and had to come up with something new. I wasn't concerned with originality. I just wanted something that worked. Parts for the rear light included a "free" flashlight from Harbor Freight and a double "D" cell box with and on/off switch. I tore the flashlight apart for the bulb and the housing. The box needed modified to contain the tabs for the lens and attachment to the rack. After that, I painted it white, soldered the light to the box and used a little hot glue to hold the light in the right spot so I could get the lens in...sort of like putting a puzzle together. The result looks pretty good. So if you just want a light that works and aren't concerned with originality, this is a inexpensive route to go.

IMG_1688.JPG


IMG_1690.JPG


IMG_1693.JPG


IMG_1701.JPG


IMG_1703.JPG


IMG_1711.JPG


IMG_1714.JPG


IMG_1704.JPG
 

BrentP

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jun 26, 2010
343
93
Calgary, Canada
www.facebook.com
Been meaning to post this info for a while. I finished an abbreviated restore of my wife's Spaceliner earlier this fall and learned some new tricks. Both battery containers were shot and had to come up with something new. I wasn't concerned with originality. I just wanted something that worked. Parts for the rear light included a "free" flashlight from Harbor Freight and a double "D" cell box with and on/off switch. I tore the flashlight apart for the bulb and the housing. The box needed modified to contain the tabs for the lens and attachment to the rack. After that, I painted it white, soldered the light to the box and used a little hot glue to hold the light in the right spot so I could get the lens in...sort of like putting a puzzle together. The result looks pretty good. So if you just want a light that works and aren't concerned with originality, this is a inexpensive route to go.
Nicely done! Are you sure your name isn't MacGyver?
 

Lorcan Otway

'Lil Knee Scuffer
Mar 2, 2018
12
6
62
Manhattan, New York, NY, USA
Hi Brent: Great work, and many thanks! Do you know what approx. years a serial number beginning
higgins 032.jpg
Higgins 029.jpg
in 462 might be? Here is a photo of the bike and one of the serial number. Is it a Spaceliner, or a Flightliner??? Many thanks! - Lorcan
After a year long research exercise, I have compiled reference information for the 44 versions (models) of the Sears Spaceliner. If anyone has better photos for a specific model please contact me and I will add them to this reference. Also, if I have used reference images of your own bike, please let me know so I can give you a photo credit.


PRODUCTION NOTES

Spaceliners were designed by renowned industrial designer, Victor Schrekendost, and produced for model years 1964-68 (5 years), by Murray for Sears (debuted in the Fall/Winter catalog in late 1963, in time for Christmas). It was introduced as the new top middle-weight model when Sears discontinued production of the Flightliner at the end of 1963. Prior to this time, bikes sold by Sears were branded J.C. Higgins, but beginning in 1964 (the year of the first Spaceliner) branding of all bikes was changed to Sears. In 1964 and 1965 they had a straight-tank design which was phased out at the end of 1965 (with the exception of the painted frame models) when the 'Forward Thrust' (7-style tank) design was introduced for the 1966-68 model years (debuted in the Fall/Winter catalog in late 1965).

The chrome frame Spaceliners can be grouped into three tiers (referred to here as Deluxe, Standard, and Base). Sears also produced painted-frame Spaceliners in addition to their chrome models. The top tier, fully-optioned chrome bikes, are referred to here as 'Deluxe'. The 'Standard' and 'Base' tier chrome bikes are considered mid-range (fewer features), while the painted bikes are the entry-level models. Most of the full-size bikes were also available with an optional 2-speed, kick-back Bendix rear hub, and were assigned a different model number if they came with this feature.

The painted straight-tank models were the only models produced for all 5 years of Spaceliner production (the chrome, straight-tank models were phased out in late 1965). When the 7-style tank (Forward Thrust) models were introduced for the 1966-68 model years, a painted 7-style tank version was added to the line-up which gave both straight & 7-style tank choices for the painted frame models during those 3 years from 1966-68.

Bikes came in larger Men's/Women's size (26" wheels and full size frames) or Boy's/Girl's size (24" wheels and smaller frames), but Sears referred to all sizes as either Boy's or Girl's in their catalogs and used the model number to distinguish between sizes.

Depending on model and year, prices ranged between about $39 for a painted model to $65 for a top-tier Deluxe model.


THE BIKES

Serial numbers are found on the rear wheel drop outs. The first three serial number digits (502) are Murray's identification code for Sears. Digits 4-8 of the bike serial number indicate the model number. The final digits are the unique frame identification number. Nothing in the serial number indicates the manufacture date or year of the bike, but if the original Sears Allstate tires are intact there will be a date code on the tire that will give an approximation of when the bike was manufactured (not exact because there is no way of knowing the lag time between tire manufacture and bike manufacture). You can learn how to date Sears Allstate tires HERE.

In most cases, bikes are grouped into families in the table below (i.e. Deluxe family, Standard family, Base family). Each 'family' usually contains three different models that are identical except for size (26" or 24") and whether or not the 26" version has a 2-speed hub option (such details are noted in the table descriptions). Highlighted model numbers in the table are linked to external reference photos (although the images might be of a single specific model, they are representative of ALL three models within each Deluxe, Standard or Base family). Clicking on the highlighted model numbers will open up a browser window with photos, and in some cases Sears catalog scans, for the appropriate models. There are also additional descriptive details added to the photo pages.


CHROME 'STRAIGHT-TANK' MODELS (1964 & 1965 Model Years)

NOTE: To save space, unless otherwise noted all CHROME frame models were equipped with head lights, tear-drop double reflectors on the rear fender, chrome chain ring caps, seat crash bars and painted rear racks. These specifications are common to all chrome frame models and therefore aren't noted below unless modified for a particular model, in which case the modification is noted.

Men's / Boy's
46901 (1964-65, 26", Deluxe chrome, Men's, 1-speed, springer fork, tail light, horn)
46921 (1964-65, 26", Deluxe chrome, Men's, 2-speed, springer fork, tail light, horn)
46961 (1964-65, 24", Deluxe chrome, Boy's, 1-speed, springer fork, tail light, horn)
46940 (1964-65, 26", Standard chrome, Men's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46980 (1964-65, 26", Standard chrome, Men's, 2-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46960 (1964-65, 24", Standard chrome, Boy's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46306 (1964-65, 26", Base chrome, Men's, 1-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)

Women's / Girl's
46911 (1964-65, 26", Deluxe chrome, Woman's, 1-speed, springer fork, tail light, horn)
46931 (1964-65, 26", Deluxe chrome, Woman's, 2-speed, springer fork, tail light, horn)
46971 (1964-65, 24", Deluxe chrome, Girl's, 1-speed, springer fork, tail light, horn)
46950 (1964-65, 26", Standard chrome, Women's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46990 (1964-65, 26", Standard chrome, Women's, 2-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46970 (1964-65, 24", Standard chrome, Girl's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46316 (1964-65, 26", Base chrome, Women's, 1-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)


CHROME '7-STYLE' TANK MODELS (1966-68 Model Years)

Men's / Boy's
46902 (1966-68, 26", Deluxe chrome, Men's, 1-speed, springer fork, chrome rear rack, top mounted tail light, horn)
46922 (1966-68, 26", Deluxe chrome, Men's, 2-speed, springer fork, chrome rear rack, top mounted tail light, horn)
46962 (1966-68, 24", Deluxe chrome, Boy's, 1-speed, springer fork, chrome rear rack, top mounted tail light, horn)
46942 (1966-68, 26", Standard chrome, Men's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46982 (1966-68, 26", Standard chrome, Men's, 2-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46962 (1966-68, 24", Standard chrome, Boy's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46943 (1966-68, 26", Base chrome, Men's, 1-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)
46983 (1966-68, 26", Base chrome, Men's, 2-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)
46963 (1966-68, 24", Base chrome, Boy's, 1-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)

Woman's / Girl's
46912 (1966-68, 26", Deluxe Women's, 1-speed, springer fork, chrome rear rack, top mounted tail light, horn)
46932 (1966-68, 26", Deluxe Women's, 2-speed, springer fork, chrome rear rack, top mounted tail light, horn)
46972 (1966-68, 24", Deluxe Girls's, 1-speed, springer fork, chrome rear rack, top mounted tail light, horn)
46952 (1966-68, 26", Standard chrome, Women's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46992 (1966-68, 26", Standard chrome, Women's, 2-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46972 (1966-68, 24", Standard chrome, Girl's, 1-speed, front truss bars but no springer fork, 2 rack reflectors instead of tail light, horn)
46953 (1966-68, 26", Base chrome, Women's, 1-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)
46993 (1966-68, 26", Base chrome, Women's, 2-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)
46973 (1966-68, 24", Base chrome, Girl's, 1-speed, no truss bars & no springer fork, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no crash bar, no chain ring cap, 1 round fender reflector)


PAINTED MODELS

NOTE: Specifications common to all of the painted models, and therefore not repeated below unless otherwise noted for clarification, are: tear drop double reflector on rear fender, no springer fork, no front truss bars, no horn, no tail light or rack reflectors, no seat crash bar, no chain ring cap. Details that vary by model number are shown below.

Men's / Boy's
46303 (1964-68, 26", Straight Tank, Men's, 1-speed, 1 round rear fender reflector in 64-65 was changed to a tear-drop reflector plus 2 rack reflectors in 66-68)
46343 (1964-68, same specs as 46303, 2-speed)
46323 (1964-68, 24" with same specs as 46303)
46305 (1966-68, 26", 7-Tank, Men's, 1-speed, tear-drop reflector, 2 rack reflectors)
46345 (1966-68, same specs as 46305, 2-speed)
46325 (1966-68, 24" with same specs as 46305)

Woman's / Girl's
46313 (1964-68, 26", Straight Tank, Women's, 1-speed, 1 round rear fender reflector in 64-65 was changed to a tear-drop reflector plus 2 rack reflectors in 66-68)
46353 (1964-68, 26", same specs as 46313, 2-speed)
46333 (1964-68, 24" with same specs as 46313)
46315 (1966-68, 26", 7-Tank, Women's, 1-speed, tear-drop reflector, 2 rack reflectors)
46355 (1966-68, same specs as 46315, 2-speed)
46335 (1966-68, 24" with same specs as 46315)

Copyright 2012
 

BrentP

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jun 26, 2010
343
93
Calgary, Canada
www.facebook.com
Hi Brent: Great work, and many thanks! Do you know what approx. years a serial number beginning in 462 might be? Here is a photo of the bike and one of the serial number. Is it a Spaceliner, or a Flightliner??? Many thanks! - Lorcan
Hi Lorcan. Thanks for the compliments.

The short answer about the model is that 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), and yours should have a Sears label on the seat tube below the saddle as well as Sears branding on the chain guard (can't see the chain guard in the photos, but the model number and the 'flash' decal on the tank gives it away).

I've never been able to determine a pattern in the serial numbers 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). 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/
 
Last edited:

mickeyc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Jul 21, 2013
2,375
1,282
Rochester Hills, MI
Is there a particular year that the word "SEARS" appears in the little round part of the rear reflector on a Spaceliner? Don't see it on all Spaceliners.

Mike
 

BrentP

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jun 26, 2010
343
93
Calgary, Canada
www.facebook.com
Is there a particular year that the word "SEARS" appears in the little round part of the rear reflector on a Spaceliner? Don't see it on all Spaceliners.

Mike
That's always been a mystery to me, as well. I haven't been able to compile enough photos of known years to determine when that little detail was introduced.
 

scale

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jul 12, 2013
110
3
Saint Paul, United States
Anyone know what the seatpost size is on these? My caliper gets 20.8 if i measure mine. Do they make 21mm seatposts or 20.5? Ive got a frameset with a stuck post and i am likely doing to need a replacment once i get this one out.
 

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