Vintage Adult 20" DeSoto Trike Lowrider



Feb 7, 2021
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I found this bike on the curb and it's been a dream come true. I've been wanting a lowrider trike for many, many years. Unfortunately, I know absolutely nothing about bicycles. Any help along the way will be greatly appreciated!

Trike (when found)
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After breaking it down

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Started sanding
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I will post more later today.
 
Feb 26, 2017
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Uncle John:
Lots of potential there! I'm sure that you can get lots of valuable help from this forum. Post specific questions as you proceed with your project. And have fun.
 
Aug 24, 2010
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Everybody’s got their own way but since you asked, I’ll tell you what I think.
as a beginner, don’t get bogged down with an ultimate build right off the bat. Use the existing parts, clean, shine chrome and repaint the frame. Put new tires and tubes in and get it rideable as soon as possible. This allows you to enjoy the bike and then buy and add upgrades in due time.
 
Jul 16, 2019
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It is a cool frame. The removable bottom bracket is interesting. Get it painted, get it built, devise a cool plan for a trunk on that platform out back (maybe a keg or a barrel or a wooden chest or crate or something) and then see what you've got. Maybe something with the fork too, like a springer or rat trap or bent fork to get it lower. I wonder what it would take to get fat tires for the rear. You have tons of potential there.
 
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Feb 7, 2021
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All great suggestions! The only parts that were salvageable are the fork, handlebars, the gear case or whatever the thing is that pedals attach to, and the frame. All the bolts, bearings, and anything else are bad. Since I have to get new wheels, I want to get a bent 24” fork and wheel. Then, get two 20” rear hollow hub wheels. Any thoughts on this plan? Additionally, there seems to be no 140 spoke 20” hollow hub wheels anywhere online. Does anyone know why this might be? Thanks again!!
 
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you're going to have lots of fun with this. interesting trike,
 
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Oct 18, 2014
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I would definitely go for the banana seat and stays-with a bent seat post to lean it back a few more inches- add padding to the back support stays and you would be in an almost semi-recumbent position, lower but with leg room...and without welding or any body mods on your first build! Stick with the original handlebars, tilt them back for maximum comfort at your new seating position and you start getting a bit of chopper attitude to the trike-and more weight directly on the drive wheel (plus the lower seating) allows for better stability on the turns at speed-and again, nothing but Wrench work.:happy:

And maybe i'd match some 20" rear wheels like you're already planning-best of luck on those...
 
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Sep 26, 2012
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What a great trike frame.

I agree with the people saying to keep it conservative for your first build while you learn. Clean it, paint it, get the drive train and brakes working, new wheels and tires if you need them. That's enough learning for a first time. Especially on a trike where a lot of the standard information won't apply.

Then once you've got a rider you can enjoy, start planning a crate for the back, outlandish forks, electric motor, whatever.

You can rebuild it as many times as you like the whole time you own it and love it.

But if you burn out on your first build trying to get a fork that fits and none of the information on the internet seems to apply, and it's only after you buy five different headsets that you find out that your bike is from a specific region and era, and for six months in 1967 every bicycle built in Toulon, France was made with a head tube 1.349mm smaller than the standard, that's when it ends up back on the curbside and you never touch another bicycle again.
 
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UPDATE: I have finished sanding the frame, handlebars, fork, etc. I have also finished priming the fork and handlebars. I'm hesitant to do more until I get some wheels. It's almost impossible to find any 20" hollow hub tires, especially 144 spoke. I purchased some from Mr. Bikes but I haven't heard anything from in a week, after I made the purchase. No order updates!! I have called several times, left messages because nobody answers, and sent emails. If they don't have it I just want my money back so I can look elsewhere.

Any help with this would be greatly appreciated !!

Also, please tell me how it is all looking. I would love to paint it a metal flake baby blue, but no one in my area will paint it. I guess it just isn't worth it to them. Oh well.

Thanks everyone for the support! I really appreciate it.
 

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Jul 16, 2019
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Sanding that frame must have been a chore! Get some primer on there before it rusts, or you will have to do it again! Looks awesome.
I dunno about low rider parts, won't be able to help with all the spokes you are looking for, but these people have 36 spoke trike hubs, bearings axles, etc. I know little to nothing about trikes and what is compatible, hope you find something useful
 
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Feb 7, 2021
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Sanding that frame must have been a chore! Get some primer on there before it rusts, or you will have to do it again! Looks awesome.
I dunno about low rider parts, won't be able to help with all the spokes you are looking for, but these people have 36 spoke trike hubs, bearings axles, etc. I know little to nothing about trikes and what is compatible, hope you find something useful
Thanks a lot! I will check them out.
 
Apr 1, 2014
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It's almost impossible to find any 20" hollow hub tires, especially 144 spoke. I purchased some from Mr. Bikes but I haven't heard anything from in a week, after I made the purchase. No order updates!! I have called several times, left messages because nobody answers, and sent emails. If they don't have it I just want my money back so I can look elsewhere.
Any help with this would be greatly appreciated !!
https://www.bbb.org/us/ca/huntingto...dealers/mr-bike-shop-1216-649449/complaints#0
 
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Apr 1, 2014
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It's hindsight now, of course, but it's always a good idea to check reviews of sellers you have not dealt with before. I'm sure the corona has made it rough for retailers to keep stock. Maybe you paid with a credit card and maybe they can help? Looks like some got their $ back.
 
Feb 7, 2021
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It's hindsight now, of course, but it's always a good idea to check reviews of sellers you have not dealt with before. I'm sure the corona has made it rough for retailers to keep stock. Maybe you paid with a credit card and maybe they can help? Looks like some got their $ back.
Soooooo...after reading the reviews, I decided to send another email. This time requesting cancelation and telling them I would contact BBB. I'm not joking, as soon as I pressed send, I got a response text telling me the order had been canceled and my money has been refunded. Thanks everyone. I really appreciate the support.

Now.....I still need to find some wheels ‍♂
 
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