Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking
Picked this one up on a whim at a recent WAHCC auction. I don't think it's anything especially rare, but comes with a little local provenance. Apparently the original lady owner worked with and courted future husband here in the Perth factory.
Looks like like it's been left exposed for quite some years. Light surface rust all over, but apart from a missing front wheel (rusted out rear 28 1/2" westwood to go on) it's quite complete with a nice chainguard, mudguards and a rack with fold out sides; which I hadn't seen before. Presumably to increase the top surface area a little, for a bigger box or basket than you might otherwise normally carry.
Anyway, it's my first pre 60s bike that I've decided to keep. I think with some judicious application of patience, penetrating oil & heat I may have it rolling again. If not... not too much lost
click thru on these pics to higher res versions (with any luck)
By my quick skimming of this thread; 3P 16975 would I be right in understanding this could be a 1943 or 1953 Perth build?
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Hi Warren, buckled just sent me a list of bikes and frames that will be auctioned at a WAHCC meet in Albany next week. It includes three older 2 Star frames, serial numbers P2760, 5P167 and P102. The last number seems very low, don't know if it's a misread or very early Perth built MS frame.
Hi Warren, I spoke to the owner this evening. He's sure they're 28" wheels, will double check though.
Hi I've just acquired a 2 star frame with a serial number 5674 on the rear dropout, and 56764 on the fork, which I believe is original. Would love an idea of it's age.
will post photos soon and plan on restoring.
thanks in advance
Evening Warren. Just bought a 2-star with the only number I can find towards the top of the seat tube: 9 above then 1253. It has 28 inch Westwoods (with new Vee Rubber tyres incidentally), Renak rear hub and coaster brake, stars in the fork tops and just the barest outlines of the original transfers. I've hd a fairly close look at the rear dropouts and can't find any other numbers. As always, any help in dating will be appreciated.
Newbies never learn, do they?
Guys... you need to read back through this thread, skimming from Page 1. Too many people expect instant answers from the subject matter experts like Warren and Co. They're not here at your beck & call.
Serial numbers are not an exact science. Some periods are better guessed than others. What really helps beyond just saying "one star, two star, etc" and quoting whatever serial digits that can be made out are clear photos of some of the bikes details, like rear drop outs, seat post/stay cluster, fork crowns and head tube details.
Reading back through the thread, you may also find similar details photos of other bikes which may match your own and you may get a better of idea things.
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Agreed HH. This thread was begun by bicyclepassion looking for pre 1930 bikes. It's an open forum though, so it will go in whatever direction it's correspondents take it
There are probably thousands of gaspipe Malvern Stars with Renak coaster brake hubs from the fifties and sixties still floating around, ID'ing them all as interested parties find this thread could become burdensome. Some of the pressure could be alleviated by a publicly accessible register though.
I am happy to try and date any Malvern Star that has a number on it. Even the ones from the early 1970's that have a number on a plastic strip underneath, and of these, 1970's Skidstar GT's are of special interest.
The only reason I started recording them (25 years ago) was to try and break the code.
As said previously, the numbers from about 1930 to 1959 are fairly easy to date now, but there are still lots of bikes coming up that are pretty obviously from a certain year in that period, but do not have, what I call, a 'conforming' number.
The handbuilt race bikes, in particular, often have 'non-conforming' numbers.
I am happy to receive numbers from the 1960's. As far as I can make out, these numbers re-started a simple numeric sequence at least once, maybe twice, in that decade. Only by adding more numbers, with frame and parts details, will these numbers be decyphered eventually.
Serial Numbers alone will continue to be insufficient to accurately date Malvern Stars. I have a large collection of brochures, and a very few bikes on record with known purchase dates. The known purchase date bikes are the ones that I have used to work out the dates for all bikes with numbers close to them. Get it?
Pictures of other details, like lug type, fork crown, fork ends are important for the database, and to compare with brochures.
So keep the numbers coming, no matter when you think it may have been made, and especially if you KNOW WHEN IT WAS FIRST SOLD.
It is with grateful acknolwedgement to other Malvern Star enthusiasts, very particularly to Rolf Lunsmann, that I have been able to persevere with this.
I know my ladies bike serial # conforms to suggest it is either a 1943 or 1953 Perth made example - but when I am better positioned I shall take some more detailed photos than those I've provided above and repost them here. I'm more just curious as to whether it's more likely a 1943 or 1953 based on the tell-tale details on the frame.
I mean, I'm sure there was local trends that varied different factories and then between production runs on the 'garden variety' bikes like mine that might've been never documented and now lost to the sands of time; but being that some people have been at this game longer than I have, I will quite happily defer to their opinion.
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here are pics of a bike I have had for at least 12 years.
not sure if I have the original fork, maybe as the head fittings are hanging on the frame.
From previous posts I think 1945 Melbourne.
Thanks for your efforts.
cycles gitane (who is trying to sort the wheat from the chaff )
There is NO room in the shed for the next bike! New shed rqd.
Thanks for that one Cycles Gitane. This is a good example of dating from frame and parts, as well as serial number.
Black painted parts, particularly the black BSA cranks, suggest that it is a war time production bike, when copper, nickel and chrome were re-directed to weapons etc, and plating was not used on the humble bicycle.
That decal style was used from 1939 until (about) 1946. Also, the script decal was mounted high on the main bar during that time.
So we already know that the 5M prefix suggests that it was built in 1945, and with this bike, we can tell that it has its original paint and cranks, and also confirm the serial number date, from the parts.
That actually provides a few more clues about mine as well, Warren.... there doesn't look to be much trace of any chrome at all on my Ladies step through. The BSA cranks look to have been black painted, as are the chain guard and mudguards. The one remaining 28" Westwood rim has faint remnants of being black with a bit of pinstripe detailing.
The bars are pretty consistently covered in surface rust. If I had to bet money, I'd say they were painted and have worn bare to end up in this state after sitting exposed and unused for some decades. I think the only remnants of nickel or chrome plating might be the stem & attached light bracket.
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Hi Warren i was given a old Malvern star bike . I was told it may have been purchased around 1949. The only numbers on the seat tube are Q7 371 on the left hand side and Q on right hand side. I would like to date the bike if i could was it from around 49 any information you could provide would be great .
Paul, Q7 371 on seat tube is an unusual number. You will have to post pictures here to help out with dating the bike. I cant date it from those numbers as I dont have anything else recorded similar to that number or configuration.
One of the WAHCC members rocked up with a 5 star he'd been given following one of our displays, reasonable condition if you ignore the fact that it only had one wheel! Anyway, square shouldered head tube lugs. The pretty banged up serial number on right rear dropout appears to be 8549.
Hi All, just after an approx. year on a 2 star I have purchased, and to add to the list/registry that Warren is compiling. bottom bracket has a 7 stamped on the underside on one edge and the right rear dropout has a vertical number 17478. it has a Renak coaster hub with the numbers 24 40, a twist grip with L N H on it, and a headlight that has a red badge that reads Hotsure (I think) left crank arm reads made in Japan, right was missing. original colours look to be purple around the bottom bracket and red/silver elsewhere. any info would be appreciated, most parts are in poor condition but I will get it back to a rideable condition of some sort. thanks, Tim
I have two questions relating to MS bikes...
I have a Tom Wallace Special (Brisbane) frame that looks like a Malvern Star 2 star frame.
Did MS resell frames to other bike shops to rebadge etc..
It is stamped 23261 on the rear right hand dropout
Is this a MS marking or a TW number?
Hi John, Tom Wallace did a lot of refurbishments and often used other brands and rebranded them as TW Specials. I have an Austral that is the same colour and has the same decals as your MS.
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now for my second MS question..
I recently purchased an old track bike on ebay with very unusal lugs.
It was painted black and had no identification decals etc so its very hard to tell what it is.
The lugs are very similar to a 54 Healing that I have as well as other MS 5 star frames that I have seen previously.
I posted this previously as a query about the lugs and the general thought was that the lugs were Haden used on top end builds...
So back to my question
The black bike that I just purchase had "56M" on top of the number "3529" stamped on the back right hand dropouts.
Is this a Malvern Star identification and if so is it possible to tell if it was a five star...
appreciated any advice.
Thanks Warren for the info on the Tom Wallace.
Is the number a MS number and if so what year would it come from...I thinking mid 60's..
anyway look forward to you response to my question on the black bike...
Are you asking if the frame repainted as a TW is a MS? if so it has the stars its a Malvern Star, the black one, if it doesnt have 5 stars its not a 5 star, its also a road frame not track. Its odd that it has what looks to be a MS number but the "M" in my opinion wasnt struck at the same time by the same person as the numbers. Outside suppliers made frames for MS so it could be an outside build frame that never made it and was sold off by the maker.
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