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What to do with Scwinn American?

Discussion in 'HOW TO' started by Justin Sane, May 13, 2012.

  1. Justin Sane

    Justin Sane

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
    Messages:
    21
    Hey everyone! I'm in need of some advice. I recently picked up a completely original Schwinn King Size American on Craigslist. It was a rust bucket but I had the plan already so I forked over $80 for it and got started. I didn't know anything about this bike until I started researching other Americans. I understand these are somewhat rare so here lies my dilemma: I'm wondering whether I should mod this bike or restore it to hopefully make profit and then build something from a less rare bike. I've already removed all the rust and smoothed the frame, it currently has a coat of primer. The crome on the handlebars is shot, same with the fenders. I'm waiting for advice before I throw paint stripper on the chain guard. To restore and sell or to mod and enjoy? What's a man to do?
    [​IMG]
     
  2. dogdart

    dogdart

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
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    2,646
    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    Build it how you want , the ride & enjoy it :!:
     
  3. c.p.odom

    c.p.odom

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Messages:
    700
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Fix or replace the bent fork then leave it alone and ride it.
     
  4. Justin Sane

    Justin Sane

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
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    21
    What about the picture reveals a damaged fork?
     
  5. Bendix

    Bendix

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2008
    Messages:
    1,256
    Location:
    Colorado
    I don't mean this in a condescending way, but it's pretty obvious.

    Compare with another Schwinn middleweight...


    [​IMG]


    Usually Schwinn forks are bent back the other way from curb impact, yours looks like it caught some big air. :wink:
     
  6. c.p.odom

    c.p.odom

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Messages:
    700
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    The upper part of the fork blade before the rake starts should be parallel with the head tube. Most the bend is in the steering column.
     
  7. Wildcat

    Wildcat Pro Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Mililani, Hawaii
    Usually the forks show a bend from bumping into something. Yours are bent forward which is unusual, unless someone tried to straighten them and went too far forward. Check the forks carefully for any cracks, especially where it meets the frame at the crown. If you need to replace it, the fork tube will be longer than a standard Schwinn fork. I've been looking for a king size frame forever.
     
  8. Justin Sane

    Justin Sane

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
    Messages:
    21
    One of the forks is cracked where it meets the tube. I'm going to have a buddy mig weld it I suppose. But previous question still: would you restore and sell or mod and ride?
     
  9. Bendix

    Bendix

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Colorado
    mod (w/out cutting or welding) and ride, ride, ride! :D
     
  10. Justin Sane

    Justin Sane

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
    Messages:
    21
    I'm going to weld it so that it doesn't snap on me when riding. But the fact that its bent out like that in the first place is what attracted me to this bike. I guess you'll all just have to see the finished product! Thanks for the input, everyone!
     
  11. Wildcat

    Wildcat Pro Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    I think those forks are drop forged. Let your welder know that in case he needs to weld it differently because of that. If it doesn't work out, you can get a set of regular Schwinn forks and weld them to the longer tube, or have the standard tube lengthened an extra inch and a half. Or if you get tired of the whole thing, I'd like first dibs on the sale of the frame.
     
  12. sensor

    sensor

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2007
    Messages:
    8,173
    Location:
    sac. valley
    well since youve already got it in primer you might as well paint it(i wouldve left it since a repaint will never be worth an original) and yeah the fork is bent.....as long as it doesnt give a huge amount of flop(im guessing youve since pulled the fork and checked for metal fatigue/stress cracks) and if it is solid i wouldnt sweat it since you like it...have fun!
     

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