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1940 Schwinn DX Klunker Build

Discussion in 'KLUNKERS & MOUNTAIN BIKES' started by GTV, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. GTV

    GTV

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Messages:
    530
    Thanks for that! I ordered the die and found a 2” handle from Home Depot for $8 less.
     
    RustyGold and hammer mechanic like this.
  2. GTV

    GTV

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    530
    The die arrived last Friday, I didn’t hesitate to try it out and clean up the existing threads by hand. Definitely a great buy for an ameuter like myself. The 2” diameter handle from HD is supposed to arrive this Friday then I can:

    Cut threads
    Shorten steerer
    Install fork
    Modify the long truss rods to work (hopefully?)

    Once the hoops arrive I can calculate spoke length and build a wheelset. Ohh, and paint the hoops. I’ll test out my 2.25” tires, I’m fairly confident a 2.4” will fit. I think I can make some very minor tweaks to the drop out hardware and shorten up the chain another link.

    Stay tuned!
     
  3. GTV

    GTV

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Messages:
    530
    This post contains actual progress!!!

    I picked up the 2” die handle from Home Depot today and finally got to do a little work. First I cut a bunch more threads:
    F1335924-01E1-4FF9-938B-2DFDDBE7E631.jpeg
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    Then offered it up to the frame to confirm my measurements.
    E8CF8714-24B9-4019-84C3-80D8D333A4DB.jpeg
    Hacked off nearly 2”
    1C522F6F-735A-4A0A-BD89-3E62AC24F583.jpeg
    And now this build finally has a proper fork!
    ADF34DB1-9F01-49F9-98EB-AC2510DFDAA6.jpeg
    Truss rods of course need a trimming. I think I can just flatten the ends further up and drill new holes?
    D1913A9A-3F99-4722-A36D-F28B6AA29E1D.jpeg

    Apologies for the sideways photos, even when I rotate them the other way it uploads like this again :wondering:
     
  4. GTV

    GTV

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Messages:
    530
    Oops, forgot to update this!
    Saturday I worked on the truss rods. First I marked them:
    A361214F-CBF8-475F-8E92-7D406C02F866.jpeg
    Then gave them a squish in the vice
    263DB654-A3C8-40B7-8302-F23847D4C927.jpeg
    Hammered them flat, offered them back up to the frame and marked the dropouts for the new holes
    8AF8203B-0749-486B-894A-25C9157C8900.jpeg
    Drilled a 9/64” pilot and then opened them up to 5/16”
    4C49A350-BDDF-4E48-89EA-B12E91464B36.jpeg
    Back on the frame to mark the bottoms for trimming
    A915B05F-579B-4EB1-9E93-2DF441BB6622.jpeg
    And this is where I realized that I torqued my Wilton vice too hard while smooshing the ends down and fatally broke it :( So until I get a new vice or my wheels come in, whichever comes first, this is where the project is.
    6032F14D-CFEF-444F-AE48-995496DE5AE7.jpeg
    26E61B12-2B49-446F-A488-973927FF63A6.jpeg
    I must say that converting the girls fork to a men’s frame was easy and much more straightforward than I was guessing. I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2018
  5. GTV

    GTV

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    Brooks Conquest saddle has arrived :) The red undercarriage will not do so it will receive a couple minor cosmetic adjustments.
    FE718FFF-F9BB-4FD9-A046-CF657B47BF11.jpeg
     
    Speed King and Dizzle Problems like this.
  6. GTV

    GTV

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    Scrounged through my parts stash and pieced a clamp together
    9B7C26FA-69D0-461A-B29E-695F02E88AEA.jpeg
    Feels like it’s getting close now. I’m currently considering keeping it ugly for a season, maybe tear it back down before next season for a proper paint job. Which leads me to my first question...

    Is there a guide to Schwinn prewar paint schemes? I want to do a factory layout, but with different colours and maybe from a different year or model. I believe there are stencils available to help with this?

    I also need to find some new headset bearings as mine are currently a mix-match of this and that. Of course bike shops around here are of no help, but I know the guys here know ;)
     
  7. Dr. Tankenstein

    Dr. Tankenstein

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    Isle of Hope, GA
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  8. GTV

    GTV

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    Still looking for correct headset bearings...
    My wheels have not yet arrived, but I did finally get the vise I’ve always wanted, a vintage Wilton bullet with pipe jaws.
    364E7A83-6FCC-466B-87D5-0278B6B6A196.jpeg
     
  9. hammer mechanic

    hammer mechanic

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    Southern Indiana
    nice vise
     
    GTV likes this.
  10. Speed King

    Speed King

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    Jul 18, 2013
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    Great project. It's gonna be sweet.
     
    GTV likes this.
  11. GTV

    GTV

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    Before
    9EBEAE5B-DBFF-422A-8D82-1BD549E4743E.jpeg
    After
    A1014D9B-88D6-4756-9255-94B07B8C3D66.jpeg
    5BCFF389-CFA6-489F-83BF-D62954E7D017.jpeg
    BB385BB1-E73D-48AA-9FA0-85FA45065EFF.jpeg
    I still need to condition the leather but that looks a lot better :) Like a mini B67. Really happy with the results!
     
  12. GTV

    GTV

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    Big progress. I Proofhide’d the saddle! :21:
    D4198E42-CDB7-42A8-A561-830D42A93F8C.jpeg
    In all seriousness, I am very pleased with the outcome. Upon delivery I was a little worried that it wouldn’t turn up this well. It still shows age, but it has a lot of life left in it.
     
  13. Speed King

    Speed King

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    Jul 18, 2013
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    Like me
     
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  14. us56456712

    us56456712

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2013
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    2,543
    Location:
    The middle of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan
    I also have a 1940 Schwinn klunker. I have had many others, CWC, Westfeild and a wishbone frame. The Schwinn rides the best. I just gave away an Excelsior bomber I built from junk. I removed the rear triangle braces, bolted a threaded rod to the drops and widned the spacing with an old steel furniture clamp. Your bike will ride great. The main problem on my klunkers is headsets getting loose. A little blue thread lock fixes that. Other problems include seats and bars that move after a crash or hard drops and bangs. Not as robust as new stuff. I like to use chain tugs with the axle centering bolts in the drops. Most old drops except Colson let you do that. I'm soon going to start on a Colson based skip tooth with a Morrow using 10 x 17 gearing and Schwinn bolt on cantilever front brakes. Can't be any worse than my Bendix manual two speed. That thing had poor brakes that required a way back pedal with low gears. It blew out klunking two summers ago so now I'm running a single speed E110. I have a lot of Bendix manual parts and have rebuilt a few but it is such a poor hub that I'm not going to bother. I like the Nexus 3 speed with low gears on klunkers, but after about 3 years those blow out too. Nexus 3 speed hubs have good breaks with little back pedal using low gears. I'm interested to see how the Morrow works. On some technical sections with rough downhill sections my Bendix would get to hot to touch. If you ride single track you might have a problem with your fork. I had a Schwinn one I straightened on my CWC and it never steared right. I got a Colson fork and it worked great. I could never measure any bend or misalignment in that fork but it pulled. I like your project and it will be a ton of fun.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2018
  15. Hammond Eggz

    Hammond Eggz

    Joined:
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    SoCal
    Soooo...any updates? I just started a klunker build myself, with a lot of ideas very similar to yours, and was really happy to come across this thread! I would love to see how it came out!
     
  16. GTV

    GTV

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    Nov 3, 2011
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    Sorry, no updates. It’s still sitting waiting on wheels!
    A301736C-F565-4C83-9F8F-56E538D600FB.jpeg
    As soon as they arrive I’ll build the wheels with my hubs, mount some rubber and see exactly how I need to modify the chain stays.
     

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