Sunday, May 31, 2015

Westfield Sports Roadster Progress

The 1940s Westfield project continues. Today's work involved cleaning and reassembling the bottom bracket parts, also cleaning, polishing and patching the paint on the fenders; and doing the same on the chain guard. I also cleaned up the handlebars.

 These are vintage Torrington Company handlebars. They have the earlier type script logo under the hand grip.

The chain ring is an unorthodox type that does not take the normal drive pin often seen on one peice cranks. This model slides onto a tapered part of the cranks and locks. 

The fenders mimic the English style, but have a "gothic" shape that comes to a point at the top. They combine the "white tail" of English roadsters with the shape of Westfield bicycles. I cleaned these up oxalic acid, polished them, then matched and patched up the paint. The insides of the fenders got a liberal coating of flat black oil-based paint. This protects the fender wells from the elements and prevents the development of rust from any dirt and moisture from the road.
 I did not use oxalic acid on the chain guard and instead opted to carefully clean it manually. I then polished and patched the paint where necessary. The goal is to give a "relic" or original type look, but reducing rust.

I built a set of pedals for the bike. The bike came with Persons pedals that were not rebuildable. I built up a set of original Torrington 8's, but with new production rubber blocks in the Torrington #10 style. New rubber and vintage steel is a good combination.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Westfield Sports Roadster

My latest project is a 1947 Westfield Sports Roadster bicycle. This yet another example of an American company trying to build a version of the English-style light roadster for American riders. We see similar offerings from Schwinn, Cleveland Welding/Roadmaster, and a host of other American companies who tried to capitalize on getting American adults to bicycle. Westfield/Columbia offered both Sports Tourist and Sports Roadster models.

The Sports Roadster, which is this bicycle, offered a diamond frame, English-style fender paint scheme, gothic/Columbia-style fenders, and laid back frame geometry somewhere between an English roadster and a balloon tire cruiser.

The dropouts are styled after the American cruisers of the era, but the seat stays bolt to the seat mast similar to a Raleigh DL-1 or an English roadster. Wheels are 26 x 1.375 (ISO 599), which is an American version of the English light roadster style wheel. 

This should be a nice project for summer, and a fun bike once cleaned up and back on the road.

 The rear wheel features a coaster brake.This particular bicycle also has a period correct addition of a Philco center pivot caliper in front. These brakes were popular aftermarket brakes during that era, and gave you added stopping power.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Enjoy Good Weather When You Have It

This time of year in Virginia gives rise to lots of different weather. The start of this week involved summer heat around 90, with lots of humidity. Today was a pleasant 75 and breezy. Tomorrow will be 55 and rainy.

That means it's time to take the good weather days in hand and take every chance to ride. You never know when you'll get rain, and the oppressive heat and humidity of summer are just around the bend.

Today was a chance to take out the Columbia Three Star Deluxe for the first time in awhile.