BonniRocket - Pretty much done at this point

Discussion in 'BUILD OFF #7' started by expjawa, May 1, 2012.

  1. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    This year, I wanted to build up a straight-bar type frame, possibly with a tank, in the spirit of salt flat land speed record cars. Not only do I want it to look fast, but actually be fast. Maybe not sustained fast like a road bike, but capable of a high top speed (assuming I can actually crank the thing) for short distances. Here's where I'm drawing inspiration:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now, about what bike to actually use, I can go with 1) a Huffman Firestone:
    [​IMG]
    2) a Colson Firestone:
    [​IMG]
    Or possibly 3) a Monark Rocket frame that's just hanging around:
    [​IMG]

    Ultimately, I have mixed feelings about hacking up either Firestone, since they've survived this long as is and are otherwise pretty complete. The Rocket, OTOH, not only sounds fast but is something I bought as essentially a partial kit. Someone previously repainted it (kinda poorly), so I have no heartburn about doing what I want with it. Here's my concept sketch of where I sorta see it going (although the design has already evolved somewhat from it in my mind):
    [​IMG]
  2. yoothgeye

    yoothgeye I <3 Single Speeds Moderator

    Rating - 100%
    4   0   0

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    Messages:
    7,941
    Location:
    Roanoke Rapids, NC
    Re: BonniRocket

    Based on your sketch I think you should look at the Richard Petty tribute bike from last year's build-off for some inspiration.

    I know you can pull this off!
  3. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    I remember the Petty bike. I can see where you'd draw a connection from the sketch, but that's really a bit of a different direction than I see this going. Part of that, I think, is that sketch is really kinda 1-dimensional, whereas in my head I see the complete picture that I can't really convey well.

    A few details that you wouldn't get from the sketch - the frame/fork will be a dark metallic green, whereas the scallops a medium shade. The tank is bare steel (except for the scallops) that's clear coated. I might do the same with the chain guard, I don't know yet. The filler panels are aluminum, again bare. I'm thinking of either a brushed or grinder toolmark finish on either, although if I'm real ambitious I might take a stab at engine turning.

    The canvas tool bag is meant to represent, at least in my mind, a drag chute. But it would also be cool if I could find a spun aluminum tank about that size, although anything I saw like that was beyond expensive. I think the headlights will move to an axle mount, TBD. I'm thinking of a rear bumperette of some sort, the sort that a LSR car might have for a push truck (a push trike here?) to get them rolling. The stem, bars and windscreen will probably be different then shown.

    I dunno. I might do something entirely different still. I still have the idea that I'd like to build a cargo bike that would answer the question "what would Santa ride?" :mrgreen:
  4. SCHWINNRAY69

    SCHWINNRAY69

    Rating - 100%
    7   0   0

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Messages:
    8,602
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Re: BonniRocket

    Either frame is cool! :shock: Like the theme too :wink:
  5. Dr. Tankenstein

    Dr. Tankenstein

    Rating - 100%
    9   0   0

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    4,105
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Re: BonniRocket

    Any frame would rock!
    I'd go with the Monark, it has all the major elements of your drawing and will cause you less fitment issues when looking for the 'Monark' springer.

    If you need some funds, I think Double Nickle is looking for that Huffman tank for RRBO entry.

    Good luck with whatever choice you make.

    Cheers,
    Dr. T
  6. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    Actually, I the Monark frame was what I was drawing in that sketch. And I already have the Monark springer, the bike came with it. I'm not sure if Rockets generally had the springer, but this one did. It was missing the appropriate tank, but I found one from a similar Coronet on eBay. I also picked up a second chain guard, so I can modify one and not chop up the original.

    A lot of the parts needed I already have, but what's going to be expensive is the wheel set. My plan is build a rear wheel with a Sturmey 8-speed drum brake hub. The front wheel will be a deep-V rim with 24 or 28 spokes. I have no front brake planned, the rear drum will have to suffice. But if we ran coaster brakes only forever, this shouldn't be much different...
  7. Gold Street Customs

    Gold Street Customs

    Rating - 100%
    14   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2008
    Messages:
    7,020
    Location:
    UPPER LAKE C.A. est 1854
    Re: BonniRocket

    Cool, I might still have the windshield that I didn't use last year, I will let you know.
  8. char

    char

    0   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Messages:
    646
    Location:
    London, England
    Re: BonniRocket

    Cool ideas going on! I really like that Firestone :D
  9. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    Which one? Well, either one qualifies, I like them both as well. :mrgreen: Given that I've just done a lot of work on the Colson Firestone (ahead of the start) and am not likely to change it much, I probably have to rule that one out. Admittedly, had I waited to start cleaning it up till yesterday, it would've been a great entry, even without a lot of further changes.

    The Huffman Firestone Special Cruiser is interesting, but I can't do much to clean it without destroying the graphics that are still on it. I tried going over it with fine steel wool and WD40, and it started to take the white off of the decals. So, no more of that, at least until I can document it thoroughly. With this one, I think, I either leave it as is, which isn't really rideable, or I actually fully restore it. Either way, it doesn't lend itself to a build off.

    So that leaves me with the Rocket. It's really a blank slate. Well, that is unless I choose to go with...
    [​IMG]
    Or maybe...
    [​IMG]

    Nah, I think I'll stick with the Rocket. Seems like anything non-Schwinn is exponentially more interesting. :lol: Nothing against Schwinns, of course, I have a bunch of them. But they are very common...
  10. brett4christ

    brett4christ

    0   0   0

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Messages:
    370
    Location:
    Greenville, NC USA
    Re: BonniRocket

    Good choice! Kinduva shame to tear such a complete bike apart when you have one screaming to be built, but I guess you could call that "rat rodding", right? :D
  11. Rockit!

    Rockit!

    Rating - 100%
    7   0   0

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2011
    Messages:
    1,247
    Location:
    Davidson NC
    Re: BonniRocket

    Clearly you are bike poor.

    The Colson is a beauty just the way it sits. The first Firestone you posted, it would be a shame to repaint it, but it is your bike. I say use the Rocket, it could use some freshening up! Looking forward to what you come up with.
  12. Houndog

    Houndog

    0   0   0

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2012
    Messages:
    943
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    Re: BonniRocket

    Dang,you got a lot of bikes!!! :shock:
  13. yoothgeye

    yoothgeye I <3 Single Speeds Moderator

    Rating - 100%
    4   0   0

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    Messages:
    7,941
    Location:
    Roanoke Rapids, NC
    Re: BonniRocket

    Us the AMF Pacemaker and build a heart attack bike.
  14. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    I guess I have a few, but I gave up keeping count. I figure I'm no different from a lot of the other folks on this site as far as that goes. They come, they go sometimes.

    Believe it or not, that AMF is, for lack of a better term, a customer refurbish project. Someone's actually willing to pay to have it reconditioned...

    I know, I'm real torn about what to do with it. I originally purchased to use for this build off, but when I got it home, I just couldn't bring myself to build some crazy project out of it. The bike itself is very complete, save for the top half and lens of the headlight. The decal all appear to be relatively intact, certainly enough to clearly see what they once looked like and what the paint patterns were. But they are decaying, the white color on the decals comes off easy. I'm afraid that if I use it as-is, I'll wind up leading to their total loss. On the other hand, if I restore, I wipe out all of the patina (if we're still allowed to use that word) that it's earned. It's kind of a loose-loose situation, unless I simply display it, which is generally against my bike belief structure...
  15. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    OK, I've done gone and updated my concept sketch to reflect newer ideas. It's funny, just when you think you've got a great idea, you find someone's done it already. So, I'm trying to incorporate bits that will (hopefully) be unique and make this bike distinct.

    So here's the sketch MkII:
    [​IMG]

    Hopefully, I'll have time to actually start working on it soon...
  16. Doon

    Doon

    0   0   0

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    63
    Re: BonniRocket

    This is going to be a good one. You got some awesome cars for inspiration.
  17. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    Thanks. The cars shown are just examples. It's the whole scene. Really, I think inspiration came from watching The World's Fastest Indian too many times...
  18. expjawa

    expjawa

    Rating - 100%
    1   0   0

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Re: BonniRocket

    Sources of additional inspiration:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  19. Heavy Pedal

    Heavy Pedal

    0   0   0

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2008
    Messages:
    181
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Re: BonniRocket

    Yeah, that Firestone is cool! Those are the ones I like to pump up, then ride around. BTW, nice organization skillz!
  20. Terry66

    Terry66

    Rating - 100%
    10   0   0

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2011
    Messages:
    1,384
    Location:
    Dayton, Ohio
    Re: BonniRocket

    I saw a bike at a show a couple of months ago where the guy had shot clear over the patina to preserve it. Had a funky look to it, but it was also a little cool.

Share This Page