Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking
This is not a rushed job, but one undertaken with plenty of time for quiet contemplation.
Before the "Coronation" and "Elizabethan" came the ladies loop frame promoted as "streamlined, glamorous and exciting".
There is a thread with the evolving understanding of this model is here. I do not propose to revisit the information in that thread.
From a search on Trove, it appears the model was first released in 1948
I find the design interesting in that it sought to apply streamlined flowing shapes to bicycles.
I bought one for my wife.
The serial number indicates it was produced in Melbourne in 1948.
I had it blasted to see the state of the frame, which was very good, with only a minor ding on one to the pair of thin downtubes. I sprayed the frame and forks with etch primer and a putty coat.
Slowly I have been accumulating parts; rims and hubs, mudguards, chainguard, crankset. I had a chainring made.
Last weekend my ever resourceful brother-in-law filled the ding, filled in the original mudguard and chainguard drilled holes which needed repositioning to suit this frame, as well as brazed on a new chainguard mount also to match this frame.
I have rebuilt it to check all parts are in the right position before I strip it down and start the preparation for painting.
I thought it might be a suitable time to start a thread.
The rear mudguard stays will be reshaped. The French Durax cranks will need to be rethreaded and then chrome plated.
The frame will be in a purple with period lining and decals from Cyclomondo.
I have been encouraged by my wife to keep the progress no faster than a snails pace. After 4 years her enthusiasm has remained very modest [actually "I am not going to ride it"]
Bruce Small's sales pitch of 1948 obviously does not work with my wife.
I am still hunting for a headset in very good condition. If you have one and are willing to sell please contact me.
the cranks have been rethreaded from French to English.
the frame, forks, mudguards and chainguard have been rubbed back and then taken for painting with the main colour then a clear layer.
the crank arms, and mudguard fittings have been taken for chrome plating.
customised decals have been ordered from Greg Softley.
Good job on the chainring from the other thread too btw. I'm curious to know why the little ovals didn't get etched?
Great job Scott, will follow with interest
When the .dwg file was exported from Illustrator it made many layers. When preparing the file for laser cutting the guy said he had to consolidate the layers. I suspect the layer with the oval etching was lost in the transition.
If I do another laser cutting I will view the .dwg file to check.
I have polished up the chainring. Looks bling.
In a related matter, I took a period correct Malvern Star logo and made a vector file of it. It was used in a 3D router to engrave a mould for urethane castings. These will be used for embossing under the stitched leather handlebar grips. I saved the Illustrator file as an .eps file and the 3D router program had no problems reading this file.
Back to the crown chainring, at the March 2014 Sydney Classic Bicycle Show, John Kitchen had an unmolested Healing
and it had one of the original crown chainrings.
It was wonderful to see one in the wild.
I picked up the frame yesterday after the preparation, solid colour then a single clearcoat. The clearcoat was scuffed to allow for a good grip when the lining and other decoration is done
and I picked up parts that I had chromed.
The decals arrived a week ago, custom colour, from Greg Softley.
I suspect that only the seat tube decal will be applied, the downtube Malvern Star is likely to be hand painted, and the fork decals were not on the 1948 version.
The quality of work is outstanding.
Next step is to take the frame/forks/guards to get decorated and the decals applied. A3 enlargements of the 1948 Womens Weekly colour adverts, plus plenty of detail prints of Mario's former frame (with original paint) will guide the discussion.
That is one sweet beast!!
I love it
Looks great, going to be outstanding when finished. Who is doing your line work?
Shane, a lapsed signwriter, living in Adelaide, who spent many hours talking to the guys who used to paint the Super Elliott frames.
He did my Spearman, and I passed his 'test'; enabling me to ask him to do this one.
When I said I liked some specific detail on the Spearman, he smiled and said, "I was hoping you'd notice that"
Shane only does 'keepers'.
If you look closely at the downtube decoration on the red advert above, I think Shane will relish this one!
The later versions were simpler in decoration, simple stays for the mudguards etc.
But the 1948 version was "glamorous".
Looking forward to seeing the finished product.
the frame is back from getting lined, feathers, decals etc.
I wait for the rest of the week, then it goes to get the clearcoat.
Very nice line work, it will really pop out when cleared.
I don't think your wife will be able to resist taking that for a little spin.
The mattress saddle has been worked on.
The saddle base was taken back to bare metal, primed, then sprayed black.
The cover had the black vinyl removed, then it was recovered in leather.
I now have to rivet the mounting fittings in place, then clip it on.
The same leather will be used for the hand stitched bar grips. The colour is repeated on the custom colour seat tube Malvern Star decal.
From the Facebook page of Daniel Stone Autopaint. Daniel did the final frame preparation, colour coats and the clearcoat.
He normally works on custom motorbikes, and his standards are extremely high, and much appreciated.
I bought a hole saw yesterday, so I can cut out some leather washers for the mudguard fittings.
I know you can buy them, but why buy them when you can make them?
Looking super nice Philip. Great job. Makes the one in the photos I sent you look rather tatty and underdone now
needs a chain (edit: now installed), install skirt net (edit: now installed), decide on seat, saddle bag, cut and stitch leather grips, stain leather washers.
and the New Looks were released in the later part of this epic trip
beautifull work. so will the wife ride it now?
steel is the real deal.
No, or more emphatically, NO!
She: but it looks new [implying it is too good to ride]
Me: all bikes look new once
She: walks off
Undaunted, I think it is time for some gloves for the bars.
same purple lambskin leather as used for the seat.
I traced the period correct Malvern Star logo (there have been three versions I think) to vector artwork, and had it engraved into an aluminium block.
This was then used to cast two logos with flexible urethane by the same family business that does my 'honking' rubbers.
I trimmed the castings.
I vacuumed formed the wet leather over the mouldings and glued the leather to the moulding.
The leather is trimmed so that the section without the moulding is narrower than the rest, to allow for the greater diameter of the bars and the moulding.
I know this from much testing.
The stitch wheel is used to mark the stitch holes; the holes are made with an awl. The still damp leather is stitched with two needles.
I rubbed a generous coating of beeswax onto the bars before I started to stitch to see if it will give something for the leather to grip on. The leather stretches when wet and shrinks when dry. So the leather should stay in place.
Yes, I know grips are readily available, and are more durable, and are much, much cheaper. But remember, this bike is Streamlined, Glamorous and Exciting. This is part of the glamour.
Can't wait to see this finished. And I would love to see it in person. Thanks for the freewheelin' sheilas clip too
I don't care that it might be a ladies bike...or glamorous, exciting and streamlined...all of which I'm not.
I'd bloody well ride it. That is magnificent.
Ours is not to reason why...merely to point and giggle
after a thorough search I found some oval eyelets. Then had to wait for postage from China.
They have arrived.
These go at the back of the saddle and allow the bag loops to pass through the leather clad rear section of the saddle.
The custom made saddle bag has arrived.
I am currently reading up on the printing on and/or etching of aluminium for a custom saddle name badge.
And I think I have found the source for the paint for the thin coloured band on the tyres.
Once again I'm gobsmacked at your attention to detail. My puny mind wouldn't have got as far as imagining that such a thing was still being made.
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