torquill: Art-deco cougar face (Default)
The Buckeye went home today. Its owner was thrilled with it; she had apparently bought it from a junk dealer over a decade ago, and while it was pretty then, it was already rusty and run-down. It looks better now than she's ever seen it. She promised that if she ever considers selling it, she'll contact me first.

It'll be well-loved and well-used, so I'm content. I may never see another bike like that again, though.

I'm prepping photos to put up on the Picasa album, so stay tuned.
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (techie)
I pulled the bike out to take some pictures -- those will go up in the album as soon as my dad works them over tomorrow. He got some good general shots, then I took detail pics of some of the unique parts of the bike (like the chain and the kickstand). It's looking good.

Then I tightened up a few things and took it on its maiden voyage down the street and back. I've never ridden a fixie before (I'm a mountain bike sort), so I was a little surprised by how easy it was to ride. Exceedingly smooth, in fact, and silent as a ghost, no chain noise at all. It rides like a dream, other than a couple of fiddly adjustments -- I stopped to nudge the kickstand out of the crank-arm's way, for example, and the back fender has always had a tendency to rub. I can see why people like these bikes, even if I do have to nudge a pedal forward with my knee to get it into a good place to start pedaling. I think the owner will be very pleased.

If a fixie comes my way at some point, I might consider owning one... they're good on flat terrain if you aren't in a hurry, and it would be good for me to have a bit of experience with coaster brakes. Maybe I could use it as a dedicated Burner bike, since the back hub is essentially sealed and there aren't any cables or derailleur joints for dust to get into. Unlike poor Opportunity... I really do need to overhaul that bike soon.

At any rate, the Buckeye is ready to head out on Friday. Woo!
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (deadish)
Still reassembling the bike. Still not done. I bought pedals today, and re-painted the gooseneck -- I'm thinking about clearcoat so that simple handling doesn't turn it dull again. Everything's on except the pedals and handlebar set, though. I hope I don't have to tap the crank for the pedals; we had to tap a couple of pieces already.

Once it's all on, I'll clean it with window cleaner and carefully grease the chain. I still need to remove the tape from the placard, which will likely be last.

I'm feeling like I just ran a marathon, though. It may be delayed reaction from my *very* busy Thursday... I'm calling it a day, and I'll spend the rest of my time vegging with the computer. If I don't nap. I currently have a cat, and her warmth is very welcome indeed.
torquill: Coveralls with the patches "Henry's Garage" and "Forensics" (henry)
I spent the day on reassembly... it's been a bunch of fiddly steps and frustrations, but the Buckeye is standing on its own two wheels and kickstand now. It's not done yet; there's no handlebars or book rack, and I'm fighting with the bottom bracket where the pedals turn. I should have no trouble finishing it off tomorrow, though. I just need to take the bottom bracket apart again and clean it completely, as the last two times it's had sand in it... *sigh*

It's gotten a few small dings just from assembling everything -- the paint isn't bulletproof -- but it does look fabulous nevertheless. Photos will come on completion.
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (happymaking things)
Buckeye painting )

Side note: Romana isn't nearly so much fun when she's burdened with the Presidency. She always was the responsible one, I suppose...
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (techie)
I have been idly looking at websites on coaster brake overhaul, since I had to take one apart on the Buckeye and I had never dealt with coaster brakes before. What's baffled me is the references to brake shoes... this hub had no shoes in it. So I dug a bit deeper, and finally looked at the hub to get a make and model.

It turns out this is a New Departure Model D. I should have expected antiquity, given that I dated the bike by its chain to the mid-40s, but it simply hadn't occurred to me that the hub would be so old as to have a totally different design. Elegant, to be sure -- it doesn't wear nearly as much as the ones with shoes in them, which is doubtless why it's survived this long. I'm sure there aren't any parts to be had for love or money, which is why it's a good thing it's in such fine shape inside.

It is not, however, a typical coaster brake assembly. I think I can say with some certainty that I will never see one like this again... *sigh* I'll have to be sure to photograph it extensively before I put the hub back together.

Technical notes on how to reassemble it; of little interest to anyone else )
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (happymaking things)
Bike painting )
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (challenge)
Buckeye painting )

Pictures are up on the Picasa album.
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (heroes)
Yesterday went as smoothly as could be expected... I had to do an early-morning grocery run to fill in a few gaps, and the goose got done so fast we ended up sitting for dinner about an hour and a half early, but all in all it was pretty good.

Still haven't seen the Doctor Who special, as Greg doesn't want to see it (he's not caught up yet, and doesn't care that they're usually stand-alone specials). Maybe Wednesday.

I gave a few quite good gifts, and got a few myself -- no phone, but I didn't really expect one. I now have a copy of Julie Sahni's "Classic Indian Cooking" thanks to [ profile] hopeforyou and [ profile] starry_sigh, many thanks; that will provide some fun cooking experimentation in the next several months. There were various other trinkets, including the Kaldor City audio plays -- those are rollicking fun, though I shouldn't listen to them in the car because Paul Darrow has a tendency to make me double over laughing. Nobody gnaws on the virtual scenery with quite so much panache.

I woke up this morning feeling well in over my head because of the bike, but it was unexpectedly clear. So I begged Greg's forgiveness, bought more sand, and overhauled my dad's sandblasting booth... the handlebars, gooseneck, and fender supports are all ready for primer tomorrow. I'll do that and wet-sand the other pieces before rain again on Wednesday. Whee.

I counted the number of painted pieces on this bike: 18. No wonder it's taking forever. At least I still have some audio plays to listen to.
torquill: Coveralls with the patches "Henry's Garage" and "Forensics" (henry)
More on the Buckeye )

Some observations on the Doctor Who audio dramas, and a re-evaluation of a classic Doctor )

One of the actors who gave an interview after an audio drama mentioned he was a fan, but couldn't hold a candle to "those die-hard Doctor Who fans". I thought idly, Ah, I'm one of those. I may not know the really fine points of trivia anymore -- it's been a while -- but I could still probably name every companion from Liz Shaw on up, with a scattering of the earlier ones. Yay geekdom.
torquill: Art-deco cougar face (techie)
I have a deadline of the end of the year for one of my projects: restoring a 194X Cussins & Fearn Buckeye bicycle. When it came to me, it had been to Burning Man, and had a typical gold spray paint finish because it had been rusting and, well, it had been to Burning Man. The mechanics were in need of attention, and the chain was rusting... which was a problem, because skip-link chains cost $80-120 to replace these days. Fortunately, the chain is in good shape after a little TLC, and the internal mechanisms and races seem intact and happy.

I decided to not only lube it up, but to restore the paint on it. Ambitious, perhaps, but I'd really love to see this funky old bike as a point of pride again. Various places on the body were virtually untouched by weather and spray-paint, so I can even (roughly) match the original green. I'm told there are really good modern automotive paints and clear-coats in spray cans.

The first step in fixing it up -- and painting it -- was to get it in pieces. That proved difficult, as some of the pieces hadn't been taken apart for at least fifty years. Today we ground off the screws holding the back fender on and loosened the headset nut, which let me finally pull it all apart. Now it's down to cleaning, sanding (a lot), masking, and finally putting on paint... then sanding again and giving it a clearcoat. All to be done before December 31, as the owner wants it back soonish.

It's fun, actually, working on this... and progress is being made after a long dry spell. Wish me luck. :)


torquill: Art-deco cougar face (Default)

September 2017

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