Pub Cruiser

Oct 1, 2012
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Hello everyone,
I am new to the forum, but have been lurking for a bit. I got bit by the bug about a year ago when I went to a bicycle show in Belton, MO. It was put on by my father in law's best friend Buddy and had a great turnout. That was when I decided that I needed to put together a cool bike.

At the time, I had a Trek 4500 that I bought in College and still had hanging out in the garage. It was a very nice riding bike, but I never really rode it much. I decided to sell it and put the funds towards a hodge podge of whatever parts I thought would look best. After checking out some of the builds on here, I knew I had to get a Girvin fork. They just look mean on an old bike and give it that motorcycle look. I watched ebay for a long time and it seemed like I would never find one in my price range. Eventually one popped up that was missing the elastomer bushing and I bought it. I figured I would just buy a spring conversion and it would work out. Well, it turned out that it wouldn't be that easy, but I pushed on picking up a vintage Brooks seat and and a 1930's Elgin camelback frame. I really like the straight bar look over the curvy frames and this one was priced right, so I scooped it up. The first thing that caught my eye at the bicycle show was the fat tires on some of the bikes. A few had Fat Franks and the Quick Bricks. I knew I had to get a set of super fat tires. I really like the look of the old white and cream tires, so I picked up a set of the Thick Bricks in Antique White. I also scored a set of Cardiff Cork grips on ebay. At this point, I had a pile of parts and it was starting to look like a bicycle.

This was a stopping point for a long time. I got busy and put the project on the back burner through the winter and would think about it from time to time, but never got anything done. The fire was reignited when I was invited to go on a pubcrawl in Kansas City. My father in law had several bikes for us to ride, so a few of us joined the already large crowd.

We rode from bar to bar and just had a great time.

That weekend was when things started getting done. We were planning to just widen the ancient Elgin frame, but it started to crack. When it would crack, we welded up that spot, but it became obvious that it would be impossible to make the rear end work.

The splitting of the thin frame was too much to weld.

And now for something completely different.....

We cut the back end off a 1960s Montgomery Ward girls bike. It took quite a bit of eyeballing and tweaking to get it perfectly straight, but it worked awesome and is much stronger than the frame would have been. Sorry for no welding pictures. I like my eyeballs as-is.

Mock up with the tires.

I cut down a gate spring from Tractor Supply and it fit the fork nicely. It actually has just the right amount of compression. I have another spring that looks a little better that I will replace it with eventually.

I placed an order for the 24" copper wheelset from 3G. They were out of stock, but it would be a bit before I had time to work on the bike again, so it all worked out.

After some slight widening of the rear end, the Thick Bricks fit snugly in their place. We tack welded the seat post in place for now and I was ready for the bicycle swap meet at the Cowtown mall.

I picked up some cream colored pedals to match my tires and a lightweight aluminum kickstand. The bike is actually pretty light and I would like to keep the weight down.

So this is where I am so far. I have began sanding the frame and will be working on it sporadically as I have time. I don't to ruin the surprise, but it will involve a lot of sanding and grinding, some green, black, wood accents and different lighting. I may eventually relace the wheels with a 3-speed, but it rides really nice as is. Sorry for the novel, but I wanted to explain my thought process on the project.

Thanks for making this place a great forum!