Love Letter to My Baby Doll

Discussion in 'BUILDS' started by furyus, May 2, 2012.

  1. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Hey Sweet Baby Doll,

    Welcome to the Rat Rod Bikes forum. Coolest bicycles on the planet, and nary a superhero outfit in sight. Take a moment and check out the gallery or just choose a random thread and enjoy; there are some real artists here, and the bikes are fantastic.

    Of course, this thread is for you (b/i/u/c/C). When I asked you if you might like a bike to cruise the pits at the races or to take to the boardwalk, I had no idea you had an unfulfilled childhood dream of having a real spider bike. I just thought it'd be a fun way to get around while saving some wear and tear on our feets. Just makes me that much more sure about you, that you'd want to ride around on a couple of kid's bikes when we should be doing what it is people our age do (watch Matlock).

    I thought you'd like to see your bike go together, piece by piece. Here's where I'm going to start: a 1968 Schwinn Sting-Ray Slik Chik frame and front fork in campus green. It's the original paint, with nice decals and headbadge. The serial number begins with HD, which is August of '68. I'm still gathering a few little bits and making sure I've got everything I need, but you'll be riding soon. I promise to put this bike together with loving care, Sweetie, and I can't wait to see your smile when you go for your first ride.

    By the way, I had told you I hadn't decided on the black Sting-Ray or the green Sting-Ray for myself. Well, neither. Instead, I'm going to build this: viewtopic.php?f=67&t=56388 You know me and reckless decisions. Thought I'd enter the Rat Rod Bikes Build Off No. 7 just for the heck of it. Hope I don't cry if I lose.

    You sure are a fun girl, Baby Doll. We'll have a blast on our bikes one day soon.

    Yours, a ten year-old with a fifty year-old body.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. cman

    cman Moderator

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    Definitely the coolest introduction to a build yet. It sounds like you are lucky to have her as she is you too. This will be fun to watch.
     
  3. BabyDoll

    BabyDoll

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    Dear Furyus,

    This is the best love letter I've ever received. This spider bike from you is proof that dreams really can come true--even 40 years later.

    I'm so excited and can't wait to see more pictures as you build. I will be one Slik Chik tooling around on this in my schoolgirl outfit complete with knee socks and pigtails!

    Good Luck in Build Off #7. I'm sure your cruiser will be very cool. Can't wait to ride them together.

    Now quit foolin' around in the RRB forum and get back to working on my bike!

    Yours, Baby Doll (a forty-something year-old with a twenty-something year-old body ; )
     
  4. Rat Rod

    Rat Rod Owner & Founder Staff Member Moderator Pro Member

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    Great build diary so far! :D
     
  5. Gold Street Customs

    Gold Street Customs

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    Nice intro, this we be cool, never seen a duet build 8)
     
  6. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Hey Baby Doll,

    I know you wanna go riding, and I can't wait to see your smile when that day finally comes. I've still got a few parts trickling in from all over the country, but I've almost got everything I need to finish your Slik Chik. Haven't really been turning any wrenches just yet, but instead I've been making sure the parts I have gotten together are up to my standards. You're not just any ol' girl, and I can't have you on junk.

    The bike pictured here is a 1970 Schwinn Deluxe Sting-Ray. It's a 100% original, unmolested survivor; every nut and bolt on this bike is factory. Shoot, it probably still has some 1970 air floating around in the tires. It "survived" 42 years, but now it's going to be sacrificed in order for your bike to roll. So now there's going to be one less original Sting-Ray on the planet, and all the rest of them increased in value a few cents. It's a really nice bike, but I wouldn't call it a super-desirable model, or rare for that matter (as far as Sting-Rays go) and what the heck, this is the Rat Rod Bikes forum - what better place to rip an original apart, right?

    I got my first 'Ray in 1970, a "Cotton Picker" that shared a lot of parts with this bike. Now, tearing apart an original Cotton Picker in this condition might be considered felonious, but we're OK parting out a Deluxe. Besides, it's mine, and I'll do as I please.

    My next post will be of the big pile of parts donated by this Deluxe, and the assembly of yours will finally begin.

    I love you like crazy, Baby Doll.

    Yours, no respecter of bikes.

    [​IMG]

     
  7. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Hi Sweet Baby Doll,

    I've got all the parts off the '70 Deluxe I want for your bike now. I could have chased all these parts down individually, but it's usually easier and less expensive if you have a "donor" for parts. I also want to use authentic Schwinn parts on your bike. Your Slik Chik is going to have a couple of different features that Slik Chiks didn't come from the factory with back in the day, but it's real important to me that as many bits as possible be "real." There is quite a market out there for reproduction or "repop" parts, but a lot of them are horrible, and to me half the fun is using cool old bits. Besides, I'd rather not have to say "Yup, this Schwinn Sting-Ray from Zhejiang Province is almost exactly like the real ones we used to ride when we were kids."

    The first pic below shows the parts donated by the dearly departed Deluxe. We've got a front Schwinn S-7 wheel and thin white-wall, made in the USA tire; rear Schwinn S-2 coaster brake wheel with thin white-wall, made in the USA tire; sissy-bar with Q bolts; seat post, front and rear fenders; handlebar quill and correct Gulco "six pie" reflector.

    Little details like "Q" bolts are important to me. All Sting-Rays had Q bolts holding the seat to the sissy bar. My '66 looks great from 15 feet, but when you closely inspect it you'll see it has regular old hardware store bolts securing the seat. They work just fine, and in fact might even be stronger than the original Q's, but they ain't Q's and it bothers me. Can you imagine that whack-jobs like myself pay up to $30 on ebay for real Q's? Which reminds me! I forgot to take the "S" bolt seat clamp off the Deluxe! D'oh! I'll be right back...

    OK, S bolt seat clamp removed from the Deluxe. Whew! Sorry for the lousy pic. Anyway, Q bolts and S bolts are important. Gotta have 'em.

    I think I've got everything now for your bike, baby! The next time I post here it will be with some actual building progress. You're gonna love this bike, and I love you so very much.

    Yours, slowly but surely.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. BabyDoll

    BabyDoll

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    Dear Furyus,

    I’m so excited to see you gathering the parts for my Slik Chik! Thank you for taking the time and making the effort to hunt down and use original Schwinn components. I’m glad you’re minding your Q’s and P’s, I mean your Q’s and S’s! I’m thrilled that my new / old bike is going to be the real thing!

    I have to admit I was sad to see you dismantling a Deluxe Sting Ray for parts, but I’ll just have to trust your judgment. You usually know what you are doing with your parts ; )

    I love the vintage white walls, sissy bar, fenders and even the six-pie reflector. Goodness knows, I wouldn’t want to be caught with the wrong number of pieces of pie in my reflector!

    I also love the campus green frame too. One request though: Since I’m a girl, can you pretty please include some pink accents? Maybe some vintage pink streamers or a basket with pink flowers on it.

    Not sure what shade the original Schwinn pink was, but it would be nice (bonus points for you) if it just happened to match my favorite shade of pink lipstick! I know that is not usually one of your typical build criteria, but that’s what happens when you offer to build for your baby doll!

    Getting a spider bike after wanting one for 40 years is awesome, but watching you build it piece-by-piece, just for me, is the best gift ever! Thank you.

    Love,
    Baby Doll

    P.S. Hey, my mother is from Zhejiang Province!
     
  9. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Zhejiang Province? I thought your Mom was from, like, Crumpet-on-Thames or something over in ol' Blighty? Just when I thinks I know you...

    Anyway, I'm a couple of steps ahead of you on the pink accent thing, at least as far as trying to work some into the build. Finding real vintage pink streamers isn't easy, but we'll get some eventually. I've got a couple of bits that will make some pink accents POP, but you'll have to wait until we get to that part of the build to see them (I know, you've seen glaciers build bikes faster).

    Speaking of parts: yes, usually. Sometimes parts just seem to have a mind of their own.

    Can't wait to go riding with you.

    Yours, always.
     
  10. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Hi Sweet Baby Doll,

    You know I love to bring you flowers and you're always impressed with the flower-arranging skills I learned in the Air Force but then you scold me and insist I save the money for retirement and you say "no more flowers." You know I can't stop bringing you flowers!

    So of course I couldn't resist when I saw this flowered seat - I had to have it. The picture below shows the seat I already had on the bottom and the new one on the top. Check out how much more vibrant the colors are on the top seat; the bottom seat is yellowed and faded, not to mention the scuff towards the front and the impression towards the rear where it looks like something was left on it on a hot summer day and it melted the vinyl. In the second picture you can see small tears in the seat on the left, and the dented, scratched Sting-Ray seat tag. The seat on the right has not a single tear in it. It also has 9 flowers or portions of flowers, where the first seat has only 8. The seat on the right is in remarkable condition for being over 40 years old, and will look fantastic on your bike. Do these pinks come close to your favorite lipstick color? I think they do, and I hope you'll transfer some to my lips soon. Anyway, the other seat will sell for a few bucks which will help the balance sheet a bit.

    I was examining the '70 Deluxe frame I cannibalized for your bike, and much to my surprise the serial number is ME, not MF (maybe I should get one of those little straps and keep my readers with me at all times, but you know that leads to wearing my trousers hiked up above my belly button and frequent harumphing - just ought to warn you). Anyway, ME means the frame was built in December '69 (MF is December '70). I'm sure the '69 was sold as a '70, because the handlebars that came with it weren't available until 1970 I believe. Regardless, I'm coming around to the two of us "matching" with campus green Sting-Rays. My black '66 is nice, but this original paint '69 frame is nicer.

    I got a couple more neat bits for your ride, but those remain "need to know" at this time. Hopefully you check in here at RRB now and again.

    You're the prettiest flower of all, Baby Doll.

    Yours, with love.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  11. BabyDoll

    BabyDoll

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    Dear Furyus,

    Awwww. Thank you for the flowers! I love them! And yes, they are the perfect shade of pink, which matches my favorite shade of lipstick. And yes I will transfer some lipstick to your lips…but only after you finish my bike!! So maybe you better get a move on it if you ever want to taste these lips again ; )

    Yes there is a big difference in the coloring and quality of the two seats. I appreciate your hunting down and purchasing the better and brighter seat. You really do have an eye for the better vintage pieces.

    I would love to have matching campus green Sting Rays with you. However I want you to pick the frame and color that you would like most. Yours may be the last Sting-Ray that you ever build for yourself, so I want you to love it and spare no expense. Obviously you are sparing no expense with mine.

    I’m excited to find out what other new / old parts you have for my Slik Chik! Not sure why it’s classified information though. Maybe we can come to some sort of an agreement. For each new piece you share with me, I’ll share a kiss with you. Might break you of that withholding habit!

    [​IMG]

    Thanks again for the flowers Furyus!

    You're the best.
     
  12. FatBoy

    FatBoy

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    Very cool build!!! Sounds like you should update Baby Doll daily! 8) :mrgreen:
     
  13. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Believe me, there is nothing I want more in this world than to be able to update my Baby Doll on a daily basis. We're workin' on it.

    furyus
     
  14. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Sweet Baby Doll,

    Withholding habit broken; I can't go without your kisses.

    Check out these old 1970 Schwinn catalog pages from the Re-Cycle web site. Note the green basket on one page and the front basket carrier (part number 01 420) on the next.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And here's what I found for your Slik Chik, in practically new condition:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    You're gonna love this bike, Baby Doll! I surely do appreciate you letting me set this build aside for a little while, though, so I can put all my efforts into my RRBBO #7 build. Once it's done, your bike gets back on the stand and gets done. And then I'll put the Deluxe back together with a few different bits to give it a little different flavor and we'll roll on matching campus green Sting-Rays! Gosh we have so much to look forward to, and so many blessings to be thankful for.

    I'm crazy in love with you, Baby Doll.

    Yours, nothing withheld.
     
  15. BabyDoll

    BabyDoll

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    Dear Furyus,

    4 Kisses for you, right off the bat!

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Even though you only revealed 2 new / old parts for my Slik Chik, you deserve 2 more kisses just for creativity! Posting the 1970 Schwinn catalogue pages is definitely worth 2 extra kisses! (But don’t go gettin’ any crazy ideas about posting the corresponding catalogue pages for every little item, in addition to your photos of the real thing, just to be anglin’ for double kisses. You can't trick me!)

    I can’t tell you how excited I am to see these pictures. I am like a wide-eyed little girl on Christmas morning! [​IMG]

    I love the basket and the basket carrier! They look brand spankin’ new! And the basket is the perfect green to match my bike! Thank you so much. I had a basket like that when I was a little girl, white with pink, but it was on my cobbled-together hand-me-down bike and didn’t really match. So this beautiful green one just thrills me to no end!

    And I love the shiny new “quick release” basket carrier. For those times when I’ll need to be gettin’ it off in a big hurry!

    Although you may have made a mistake by showing me the catalogue accessory pages! Now I think I might absolutely need some original Schwinn **hub-shiners** and a ****glittery**** lock! Every girl needs a glittery lock on her bike. (No, not really. I would prefer you get some fun accessories for your new / old Sting-Ray.)

    Yes I am going to love this bike. I am doing a happy dance just thinking about it! But by all means, please do set it aside for a bit, so you can focus on your RRBBO #7 bike, “Shut Down” (or “I Get Around” or whatever it is this week ; )

    Speaking of “Shut Down,” I can’t wait to see the Beach Boys with you this Friday! Another thing I never got to do as a kid. Like the bike above, another 40 year-old dream of mine that you are making come true.

    You’re just a *DREAM*BOAT* all the way around, Furyus.

    Love,
    Baby Doll

    Eyes Courtesy of SweetClipArt.com
     
  16. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Oh man, double kisses! I hope I can redeem these as soon as possible! Now, are these "bridge kisses" or "slurpee kisses" or an as yet unnamed kiss you've been saving for a special occasion? Do I gets to choose?

    I've got to hurry up and finish my build-off bike so I can concentrate on your Slik Chik. I have it in my mind's eye exactly how big your smile will be and how happy you'll be riding it up and down the street at your house. Wouldn't It Be Nice to ride our Sting-Rays together on the boardwalk at Ocean City someday?

    Oh, and that's exactly why I got you a quick-release basket.

    You are so much fun to be with, Baby*Doll. We've got to figure out a way to spend more time together.

    Yours, always.
     
  17. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Dear Sweet Baby*Doll,

    Wow, it's been a long time since I wrote to you here on RRB, but you know how much we've had going on. I really intended on detailing the build of your Slik Chik but it just didn't happen. When you asked me back in December to make an ornament for our Christmas tree I knew you'd really dig the old Schwinn head badge, but then I realized I had to make sure your bike was under the tree Christmas morn'. It's too late to show you the build now, but we at least we can update our ratty friends here at RRB.


    Merry Christmas!

    [​IMG]

    Safety first, right?

    [​IMG]

    '68 Owner's Manual and hang tag with a love note..."Only... for my sweet Baby*Doll"

    [​IMG]

    You can see the head badge hanging on the tree in that last pic!

    I am so blessed to have you, Darlin'! Not only was it so much fun putting this bike together for you and giving it to you, but now you have plans on doing some things to it to make it your own! I love the ideas you shared with me today! Believe it or not, the fact that you want to add your own custom touches means much more to me that if you just left it as I gave it to you. We'll document your personal touches and post them up here, and we'll add some pictures of our riding adventures this spring. I can't wait to go riding with you.

    Thank you for the best Christmas ever, Baby*Doll. I love you very much!

    Yours, b/i/u/c/C.

     
  18. furyus

    furyus Pro Member

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    Thanks, Peatbog. The NOS basket was a huge score.

    furyus
     
  19. BabyDoll

    BabyDoll

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    Dear Furyus,

    I LOVE MY NEW OLD SLIK CHIK!! It’s the BEST Christmas gift I’ve ever received. As a child, I can’t tell you how many Christmases came and went and I never once had a new bike under the tree. So to have one that you built especially for me is a double dream come true!

    I’m amazed at how every.single.piece is genuine and mint. How did you do that? I love the colors, the flowered seat, the basket, the “accidents spoil fun” reflector, the green dice on the valve caps, the vintage bell, the vintage owner’s manual and tag…everything right down to the last detail is just perfect! And those are just the fun girly things you did for me. I know that you also built it accurately and safely and securely. It’s in perfect working order and just adorable!

    Thank you for putting so much care and attention and time and love into it.

    I’m so excited to decorate it! I’m planning homemade streamers and matching flowers for the basket. And thank you for adding the shiny new fenders. A girl has gotta have a little bling on her bike, you know!

    I can’t wait until the weather is nice enough to ride outside. I’m getting a little tired of trying to ride it around in my living room! Please finish your orange kRATe soon so we can go riding together! And don’t be jealous of all the guys who will be looking at me, they’ll really just be eyeing my custom vintage Slik Chik!

    Lots of love and kisses and hugs (and ear licks and belly rubs and back scratches) coming your way for such an outstanding gift baby!
    You’re the best! XO&@#

    Love,
    Baby Doll

    P.S. How on earth are you going to top this next Christmas!? heehee
     
  20. deorman

    deorman

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    Sheesh, get a room. :p JK, :wink: Happy cycling! 8)
     

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