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Archived: Reproductions and Motorized Bicycles

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   whizzer "H" on a JC Higgins posted by: Phil on 5/12/2004 at 11:56:32 PM
Hi, i have a 40's moterbike with a whizzer motor it is a H # H 121070. i would like to know as much info as known. it has 26x2.125 ballon tires and t thumb trottle and compresion release.also it has the BI Light headlight. thank, Phil

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Tanaka motor posted by: Geo on 5/9/2004 at 3:53:25 PM
I was curious if anyone else has tried this. I have a Taz motor with a worn out drive spindle. Has anyone tried a Goped spindle with these motors. They look more durable and easier to get. Wondering if they would fit before I buy one?

Thanks Geo

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Tanaka motor posted by Mike Schneider on 5/13/2004 at 7:38:10 PM

PLease find some of the information & parts we have concerning them.
Literature & Parts

These little bike engines are really a HOOT. I have two mounted on mountain bikes and six on cruisers. They are such fun and real head turners. They are simple to work on but were designed by Japanese engineers so sometimes the why that way is interesting.

I remember seeing them in Popular Science as a 12-year boy - dreaming about having one. Three years ago I found one at a garage sale and rebuilt it - took me about three months - no manual, parts lists or diagram - just trail and error.

I finally found a man in New Jersey who had one who had a manual and experience rebuilding these engines. We became and still are long distance friends. Once I got that engine running and rode it - I was that 12 year boy again - What a Blessing.

I have since rebuilt eight engines and in the process of networking I have gathered an extensive amount of literature and experience plus figured out how to built or find parts that are better than original and cost less.

The Information Literature $25.00

· TAS Spitz, Aqua Bug Bike Bug, and Sear Free Spirit
QBM 23 and QBM 23 NA and QBM 23 Auto
· Owner's Manual
· Shop Repair Manual
· Original Advertisement Literature
· Manufacturer's Operating Tips
· Governor Removal Instructions (0.8 6000 RPM to 1.2 HP 7000 RPM increase)
· Technical Diagrams
· Parts Catalog
· Parts Lists
· Contact List for Tanaka parts
· 1977 Popular Mechanics Article (How To Motorize Your Bike)
· Collection of TAS Spitzs, AquaBug Bike Bugs, Sears Free Spirit Bike Motors featured in Tanaka Bike Motors – “America Favorite Bike Motor” July/ August 2002 Issue of BikeRod&Kustom Magazine www.bikerodnkustom.com and check the achieves for Tanaka Tales

Parts we have developed are:

· Primer Pump Replacement Bulb (Vinyl)
· Drive Roller Wheel (62mm - Faster, less wear, less expensive than original replacement)
· Safety Gas Tank Cap
· Muffler to Submuffler extension hose
· Mounting Kit for New Model Bike (5 ½” forks versus older 3 ½” forks)

Primer Bulb $20.00

The Primer Bulb Pump is not longer available form Tanaka – sold out. We have a one way check valve and primer bulb combo similar but different than Tanaka.

Drive Wheel $20.00

The Drive Wheel is another item that has been improved on design. The rubber of the drive hub simply deteriorates with age and wear. We have put a neoprene high-speed roller skate wheel (62 mm) over the aluminum drive hub. It wears less, vibrates the engines less and bike goes slightly faster per revolution. This drive hub wheel sells for $15.00 ready to mount over your existing aluminum hub.

Gas Tank Cap $10.00

The Safety Gas Tank Cap sells for $10.00 and has a safety-retaining ring that prevents loss. The ring slips over the gas tank neck and stays in place when the cap is removed to add gasoline. An original gas tank cap that does not have the safety ring can be bought from Tanaka for $15.00 plus $4.95 for shipping and handling.

Muffler to Sub Muffler Extension Hose $20.00

We have researched and experimented with various arrangements and have developed a wire reinforced high temperature hose that with stand the high temperatures developed by the engine. The current hoses we are selling have lasted for two years.

In ordering this hose it is important for us to know the size hose you need. The models have changed over the years and this hose size has increased on later models.

This part is no longer available for Tanaka.

Mounting System $15.00 - (5 1/2” forks – Newer Model Mountain Bikes & Cruisers)

The bikes made when these engines were made had 3 ½” wide forks – newer mid 1980s mountain bike and cruisers have a 5 ½” wide fork.

The Kit comes with the hardware and assembly directions to spread the mounting bracket apart to be able to mount the engines on bikes with wider forks than bikes had when these engines were built.

Other Parts

Some original manufacturer parts are available from Tanaka and Sears - no manuals though. My literature is from people like you and some from old but new in the box engines I have purchased. Also a lot of parts can be obtained form lawn mower and motorcycle shops.

Sears and ACE Hardware are good sources for gasoline hoses, air filter and metric nuts and bolts.
Replace the original transmission grease with Lithium base grease - wasn't available when these engines were made. It lubricates better and you get a little more power to the wheel.
Original replacement drive hub can not be bought from Tanaka for $40.00 – Our improved high speed roller skate wheels are mounted on the original aluminum hub - They are slightly larger and run smoother - my bikes run faster, the engine works less and will last longer (I have some that are thee years old).
I also use synthetic 2-stroke oil (Bel Ray available form most motorcycle shops for racing 2 cycle motorcycles) in the gasoline - it lubricates better, engine runs faster, smoother and does not have carbon build up in the muffler.
An original gas tank cap can be bought from Tanaka for $15.00. Mine sells for $10.00 and has a safety-retaining ring that prevents loss.

Anyway, I can help you on rebuilding and mounting if you have specific questions after your review the information.

The literature I can copy and mail to you for $25.00 in the US. Send a check to - Don't waste money on a money order:

Mike Schneider
1307 Country Place Circle
Houston, Texas 77079

Thanks allot and hope you have the wind in your face soon.

BTIW (Brothers In The Wind)


   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Tanaka motor posted by jeff peterson on 6/17/2004 at 12:27:25 PM
2 days ago I stopped a man from throwing out a 78 freespirit moped. It’s now in my garage. I have repaired most of the problems I could see. But it will not run correctly. If I spray a shot of starter spray into the carb it will fire. But it will not continue to run on it’s own. I’m looking for help in this area and I would like to find a manual for it. Can you help me?


   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Tanaka motor posted by Will on 7/4/2004 at 10:57:41 PM
yo jeff i had the same problem we i bought a used scooter but i eventually found a way to fix it. i will tell u how to fix it if u can tell me how to remove a governor off a ninja bike. dont post it here send me a e-mail

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   1978 Roadmaster Moped posted by: MC on 5/9/2004 at 12:53:57 PM
Complete bike for sale or part out. Currently not running and has some surface rust. Let me know what you need and I will ship it to you. Here is a pic of the bike when it was new. http://www.mopedarmy.com/photos/brand/4/1805/ Thanks for your interest.

WANTED:   VeloSolex posted by: Bob on 5/5/2004 at 3:51:54 AM
Looking for the proper taillight assembly, air cleaner assembly, flywheel cover, and center-motor headlight/cover for an early model 3800.

   RE:WANTED:   VeloSolex posted by Michaael Jones on 7/1/2004 at 11:38:10 PM
Would to purchase a 1950 to 51 Solex having 26" rims, any condition will do.

AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn posted by: Bob on 5/5/2004 at 3:45:18 AM
Recently acquired an old Schwinn at a yard sale. I have no idea what year or model. When I checked your photo archive it looks like a LaSalle but the factory paint job (black & white) is much more intricate. The wheels are white with a black pinstripe. Any guesses?

Also recently acquired a Safti-Cycle Cruiser with a Reo motor. Yes, I also know absolutely nothing about it except that it runs and it's a hoot to ride! Also need guesses.

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Safti-Cycle posted by: EldoMike on 4/7/2004 at 12:34:53 PM
Have one, looking for info or others...

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Safti-Cycle posted by sam on 4/13/2004 at 7:12:20 PM
They are shown in the book"the compleat illustrated encyclopedia of AMERICAN MOTORCYCLES" by Todd Rafferty.
built in LaCross Wisconsin---sam

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   my Dads trip on bike 2900 milesin 1940 posted by: John Line on 3/27/2004 at 6:10:37 AM
I am looking for something that maybe has been junked long age. My father build a three wheel bike in 1939 and powered it not by feet but his hands. from Detroit to Colorado and back I have pidtures of the bike if any one out there has heard of this strange looking 3 wheel bike still rolling around please contact me. I would like to buy it back from the guy or family that my father sold it to.Out west some where, NM,AZ,CO ?

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   my Dads trip on bike 2900 milesin 1940 posted by Joel on 4/1/2004 at 6:50:36 PM
That's a very interesting story. You should post the photos and his story for all to see.

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Sears roebuck j.c higgans motor bike posted by: john on 3/25/2004 at 10:56:52 PM
hi, i have a Sears roebuck j.c higgans motor bike and i would like to know its value. in is in good condition. with original engine. also i would like to know the hp and what year it is. Thanks

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Sears roebuck j.c higgans motor bike posted by sam on 4/13/2004 at 7:08:01 PM
J.C.Higgins was the sears name used after WW2 elgin was used beforeWW2. Not sure when Sears dropped the J.C.Higgins and just went to sears as the name.Your bike should be from the late 60s to early 70s but then with out seeing it you could have a much older model. ---sam

   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Sears roebuck j.c higgans motor bike posted by joe on 4/19/2004 at 1:22:19 AM
it is a 1940s or late 40s model

   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES: Sears roebuck j.c higgans motor bike posted by Rif on 5/8/2004 at 4:35:18 PM
Around 66 sears dropped the higgins name. That was a year when the two names crossed over.

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Fox motor kit posted by: Larry Wlos on 3/25/2004 at 12:51:13 AM
Recently I saw a new Fox motor kit on E bay,there were also two for sale in a antique auto publication,If anyone knows of a NOS fox kit please let me know. Thank you.

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Raleigh RM 5 Supermatic 1963? posted by: Lane on 3/6/2004 at 11:39:41 AM
Greetings! I am going to try to fix up this moped. Has anyone had experience or parts for this model. It has the leading link front fork and the rubber bands have broken, any thoughts on replacement options? Thanks, Lane

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Raleigh RM 5 Supermatic 1963? posted by sam on 3/8/2004 at 11:11:31 PM
Best bet is to try http://www.buzzing.org/ look at their links/parts.etc.

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Raleig RM 5 Supermatic 1963? posted by: Lane on 3/6/2004 at 11:39:41 AM
Greetings! I am going to try to fix up this moped. Has anyone had experience or parts for this model. It has the leading link front fork and the rubber bands have broken, any thoughts on replacement options? Thanks, Lane

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Raleig RM 5 Supermatic 1963? posted by Geo on 5/9/2004 at 4:05:10 PM
Not much help on parts but as a kid I found an old beater and man I have to tell you I loved that moped. Real cool looking and it was fast compared to all the Puch's that were roaming around back then. Have fun that is a great bike. Geo

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Wireing diagram posted by: Frank on 2/25/2004 at 1:36:11 AM
Does anyone have a wireing diagram for a 78 puch maxie?

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   Wireing diagram posted by Bob Hall on 5/5/2004 at 3:37:27 AM
Think I've got your wiring diagram tucked away in the files. I've got a 1977 Puch Maxi. I can look for it and copy it for you if you still need it.


WANTED:   WTB: Original Front Schwinn Expander Brake for 1948 Schwinn Whizzer posted by: Travis on 2/15/2004 at 3:29:38 PM
I'm looking for an original front expander brake for a 1948 Whizzer project i'm working on.

   RE:WANTED:   WTB: Original Front Schwinn Expander Brake for 1948 Schwinn Whizzer posted by Larry Wlos on 3/28/2004 at 9:39:47 PM
Call me Larry Wlos 708 534 6590 cell 708 267 0285

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   New Wyman Motor Bicycle posted by: Rif Addams on 2/8/2004 at 5:30:45 PM
Hey all,
My new engine arrived on Thursday. It's one of the GT 48 ("Spit-Fire")chain driven units.
I am scrambling to get the new replica together for finishing the film work for Ron Rennie- the film maker involved in the Wyman project. He wants to have the extra footage edited with the shots we took along the way this summer, along with the musical scores, and the narration by this coming summer.
I've gathered the majority of the parts for the new bike and have been working feverishly all weekend stripping the paint from the 1967 Schwinn Varsity frame, grinding, filing, and sanding smooth the cable guides (brazed on).
I hope to have my gusseting plate cut and welded in place by this evening, and at least one primer coat sprayed.
The 1964 Bendix r.b. coaster brake hub is out being re-drilled for the .105" spokes and I should have the STEEL 27" X 1 1/4" rims re-drilled and painted this coming week. I still haven't found the appropriate front hub, but will continue to dig through my parts in search of this elusive piece.
I have the handlebars sets which I hope to begin (and finish) modifying next weekend. In looking at the engine mounted in the frame, I may in fact, have to slightly dogleg the the crank on one side and bow it on the other. No big whoop there, easy as pie.
I have the tail lamp and battery, and possibly the housing for a headlamp. I still have the battery from the other bike. Bob Johnson will be constructing a new hanging box tank, which shouldn't give us any problems. The reason we had trouble with the other one is that it had to be cut down at the last minute to clear the Whizzer engine, which itself was a last minute change. This caused a structural problem at the seams. Building one from scratch to the dimensions needed will give us a solid tank. without modification it should be great. Bob will also be fabricating a new scaled down battery box for our lighting requirements.
I've got just about everything, but I still need to aquire:
front hub, spokes (and have the wheels built), rear rack, and most importantly a saddle like the one we used on the Mead; a tail lamp / license plate mounting bracket, headlamp mounting bracket, bulb horn, bell, speedometer, and...?
In any case it's in full swing now, yet time is tight.
BUT- this may all change as I came across an old off-brand English Roadster with 28" wheels (complete rider) that an aquaintance picked up for free. I'm hoping that he will be willing to sell it for ultra cheap and therefore save me some work. It's even got the front rod brake! It would look a lot closer to both the original California motor bicycle AND the Mead Whizzer, thereby giving us an easier job of 'blending' the footage...
I would still have to re-drill the rim hoops, and front hub, and have them re-laced (with the Bendix hub out back)

I will have to appologize for any delay in the website story, but Ron needs this 'new' or 'filler' footage by this summer in order to send it to various indy film festivals and to shop it around to some PBS stations, or whatever else he has in mind.
I will write as I find time and inspiration, so please be patient and check the site occasionally.

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   New Wyman Motor Bicycle posted by sam on 2/8/2004 at 5:39:32 PM
Count spokes on the English bike--bet the bendix will not fir those rims---sam

   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES: New Wyman Motor Bicycle posted by Rif on 2/10/2004 at 1:26:55 AM
I bet your right! Boy that's an easy one and I almost missed it...
Thanks Sam,

   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   New Wyman Motor Bicycle posted by Peetie on 2/24/2004 at 2:55:45 PM
You may find the SF engine fits perfectly in frame, but check for crank to engine clearance.
The good news is, wheels are probably 40h which makes the 5 hole rear sprocket almost a bolt-on.
If you have any questions, just buzz me.

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   New Wyman Motor Bicycle posted by Sandy Evensen on 8/7/2004 at 11:04:50 AM
Hay Rif, I have a 1974 Schwinn Varsity that I motorized with a 2 Hp Brigs and Stratton upright, I fashioned it after the 1903 Californian and ride it almost every day, I cut the PTO shaft off the motor and attached the V belt drive pulley inside the cut down fly wheel, witch keeps it narrow enough for pedaling with a standard crank, T built the tank out of 2x2 square tubing and it hangs under the frame,
I built a front fork brace like the old racers had to beef up the front end. I use a friction drive on mine with a jack shaft to drive the wheel, Every thing is bolt on as I did not want to weld on the frame, If you are interested let me know and I will send you some pic's...Sandy...

   RE:RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   New Wyman Motor Bicycle posted by WT Vinson on 7/14/2005 at 6:17:45 PM
I'm making a similar MotorBike with Briggs Engine. Would like to see yours. Thanks, WT

MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   electronic ignition for TAS, BUG, SEARS, etc 2 cycle motors posted by: john martin on 2/5/2004 at 3:44:36 AM
Thanks to the response for this new system. I can now reduce the price to $32.00 plus $2.95 S&H for regular U.S. mail delivery or $4.95 for priority. With the kit, you get the electronic ignition, a new spark plug, parts to install and complete instructions. At this price, why mess with points and condenser?
Contact me at:

   RE:MOTORIZED BICYCLES:   electronic ignition for TAS, BUG, SEARS, etc 2 cycle motors posted by Lanny on 3/14/2004 at 1:48:48 PM
I need 2 rollers for a Bike Bug motor. Have heard they can
be make.