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Archived: Musclebikes (Sting-Rays, Krates, Choppers, etc.)

MISC:   Schwinn Grape Krate in box posted by: Brian on 2/28/2002 at 8:40:16 PM
I sold a schwinn 5 speed to a guy who says his god-father has a "purple" Krate unassembled in the box. Havent seen it yet, but will this week-end in Springville CA. If this is in fact an original Grape Krate in the box, I wonder what the value would be????

   RE:MISC:   Schwinn Grape Krate in box posted by mtlhed on 2/28/2002 at 9:24:43 PM
well, the value is hard to say because there is some contoversy over if schwinn ever actually made a "grape" krate. If it is in fact what he says it is, you found yourself quite a good find.

   RE:MISC:   Schwinn Grape Krate in box posted by mikamib001@hawaii.rr.com on 3/1/2002 at 6:37:24 AM
Since there is already a Brian here...I'll use my 'other' name. Could it be the Grape Krate he is talking about be the 'repop' made by Schwinn a while back? Along with the Apple and Orange, I have seen the Grape in a box at my friends Schwinn shop. It sure looked purdy purple...but it's no US original.

   RE:MISC:   Schwinn Grape Krate in box posted by butnut on 3/1/2002 at 6:41:13 AM
Oops...goofed on my name. It's butnut. I'll be using this from now on. Thanks...the 'other' brian...

   RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn Grape Krate in box posted by Brian on 3/1/2002 at 9:04:42 PM
Yes there was some controversy if the Grape did exist. I saw on a website last year a guy that put an end to that. Had a picture, not a new one. I belive it belongs to an old schwinn exec. Will find out soon when I get a look. Will be sure to get the #...Brian

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn Grape Krate in box posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 3/6/2002 at 1:56:57 AM
Now if that old executive would just come out of hiding and tell us about it.

MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by: Rodney on 2/28/2002 at 7:40:11 PM
I've noticed that just about everything from my youth is considered a "collectable" these days. Now, I see where schwinn stingray's and other bikes of the era are commanding ridiculous prices. What is going on here? Kids for which the bike was designed isn't the target, but 40+ grown men? Are some trying to recapture youth, or did they not have one of these as a kid, and this is sort of a second time around? Do these guys actually try to ride these bikes or just sit and gawk at them? Do they even allow the enjoyment of riding one to their kids? Maybe I'm missing these boat here. So forgive my lack of "getting it".

   RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by Matthew on 2/28/2002 at 10:15:27 PM
No fixation, it's just like any other Antique or collectible, the ratio of supply and demand. look at some of the prices of 30's bike items, a Shelby bike tank was bid to $1402.00 last week. Lots of people want Stingrays, and many of them are young...15-20 years old. there's the old guys like me who built many Stingrays in the 60's as a kid, and I'm still building them. Yes...my six year old son rides to, he's got a '67 junior Stingray and is able to hold a wheelie for 15-20 feet! Just think what prices would be if the hadn't made the five million plus Stingray's that they did produce!

   RE:RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 3/1/2002 at 1:11:20 AM
There was a resurgence of interest in the Schwinn Sting Ray bicycle. The lowrider bicycle craze sprung from it making the old Sing Rays more sought after than before. They are fun to ride, many got riped off the first time around. People got a Wards version instead and now they want to do it right. They want one for their kids, It still has attraction and it is still cool enough even today.

Nothing else has come along and replaced it. Nothing new and diffrent has come up and knocked the Sting Ray and the Raleigh Chopper out of the place it is in. The bikes sold today will not come back in twenty years, let alone touch off a whole new way of enjoying, showing, and riding it.
The market has changed, things are diffrent and we are the sorrier for it.
They have yet to come up with something as unique and interesting and fun to ride as these bikes were and are. Perhaps the age of the people interested in collecting these is just right somehow. When was the last time you ran across a 70 year old guy restoring bikes? There are a few, but not as many as the younger set.
This is a small, handleable, mini cantileaver frame and with those wheels and tires a stick shift and everybody loves a cissy bar. It was a great idea! It holds the interest in a way few bikes do. I don't know how much longer this happy streak will last and what will be hopping next is anybodys guess. Just keep and eye out for them.

The lines to the Raleigh Chopper are more like a muscle bike drag stripper than the Krate any day. Then again, I am biased becuase I am a Raleigh fan. The Chopper hangs next to the Krate and it's the Chopper I want to work on, mess about with. Recognizing and learning what parts to bring home has been a real trip. All those old bikes, in all those places. I never saw an old Chopper or a Krate or Ray. Perhaps the places had been worked over before I got there and they left what they didn't want for me.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 3/1/2002 at 1:16:56 AM
Except in some picture on one of the Chopper sites. It made me fall off my chair. The article said the owner of the collection was not too ready to call and sell it. I saw diamond frame mens 3 speed with a dynohub and that would be the first one I would walk up to because I love these. That would be very stupid of me because these are 50.00 bikes as compared to a Chopper and there are cissy bars everywhere in the picture along with a R.S.W. 16. Pictures like this are meant to show off and tease you. It works!

   RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by butnut on 3/1/2002 at 6:59:54 AM
I was in 4th grade when my classmate came to school on a brand new '64 fenderless Lime Green Sting Ray. I was never the same after my first ride. I got a used Sears Spyder but later tricked it out with Schwinn parts. Yes, I'm an old fart now pushing the 1/2 century mark. I'm an old school hot rodder and Sting Rays fit right in the picture. I've restored over 30 'Rays to date and one of my bikes is in Liz's book. Actually, that's the very first resto I did. I have 4 kustom show bikes (just for gawkin') and 6 riders. My youngest son learned to ride on a Lil Tiger and then a Pixie. My oldest had a Deluxe but now prefers BMX. My wife has a beautiful '64 Slik Chik. They are solid American built bikes that speak for a generation and a better time. We can't go back in time (yet), but jump on a Sting Ray, and I'm almost a 4th grader...wind in my face and skiddin' donuts on the grass. Priceless. Shaawiiiing! Aloha

   RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by david on 3/1/2002 at 1:42:07 PM
i am 42 and i love to collect and ride my bikes.i have 40's 50's and 60's bikes. today i may ride my monarks but my daughter always wants to ride the huffy slingshot.(she also rides a monark).i pop wheelies on my Krate its fun its excercise,also its great time spent with my wife and kids try it.also you meet a lot of cool folks on old roads!!!!!

   RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by Catfood Rob on 3/1/2002 at 10:32:21 PM
Its all about Fun.......some people listen to c.d.`s some people take drugs.......... some just love old bikes... and the coiol people they meet involved with their hobby.
Cos thats what it is.. a hobby! Its what makes you interesting.... as Grandpa Walton once said.......

   RE:MISC:   What the fixation with krate bikes? posted by Eric on 3/4/2002 at 2:28:27 AM
I currently own about 10 krates and numerous other musclebikes and I ride them with my 3 sons. My sons are turning into men in front of my eyes and I can see that they also have the bug. They plan on keeping their bikes and letting their sons ride them also. I never owned a krate when I was a kid. To be honest I didn't know what a krate was until I was 30 years old. I don't remember ever seeing one. The bike I owned when I was 12 was a 69 Schwinn Stingray. As for the ridiculous prices I agree with you. I stopped buying from crazy people demanding high prices for their krates.

MISC:   Sting-Ray Room... posted by: Rif Addams on 2/28/2002 at 6:40:42 PM
Hi all,
I was hoping someone could give me contact info. or even just info for/ about "the Sting-Ray Room" in Raleigh North Carolina (As seen in the Liz Fried book "Schwinn Sting-Ray")
Doing a project for school due next week, thanks for any help you can give,
Rif Addams

   RE:MISC:   Sting-Ray Room... posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 3/1/2002 at 1:21:03 AM
Did you change your e- mail address Riff? Crazy me is not recognizing it from memory.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Sting-Ray Room... posted by Rif on 3/1/2002 at 3:33:18 AM
Yes I did change my e-mail! Your not crazy after all, (it's everyone else who is crazy...)!

WANTED:   WTB Blue Sears/Huffy Rail/Spyder Fork posted by: Matt on 2/27/2002 at 5:00:07 PM
Looking for nice, straight, good paint blue Sears or Huffy Rail or Spyder front fork, must have hole for brake mounting.

MISC:   Check this out, illustrates the balloon tire bias at the Ann Arbor show. posted by: Bob on 2/27/2002 at 2:02:53 PM
I get so tired of the bad-mouthing that muscle bike guys get and then I go to the Ann Arbor show page and see this description of the classic bike of the year:

• CLASSIC BIKE OF THE YEAR AWARD ($10 entry fee) First Prize $300 Second Prize $200 Third Prize $100 (We initiated this award to encourage collectors to bring out those special, wonderful balloon bikes that so few people ever get to see. Please help us if you can, to share the best.)

Sounds like Paul has already decided that only balloon tire bikes can compete for this. Last year saw many great bikes, too bad only some of them were considered for this award. What do you think?

   RE:MISC:   Check this out, illustrates the balloon tire bias at the Ann Arbor show. posted by Bob on 2/27/2002 at 2:06:27 PM
What further aggravates me is the large number of muscle bike collectors who pay for booths and attend the show. I love going to the show, just get bothered by the obvious bias. We all have our favorite bikes, usually the ones we had as kids, it's a shame that some folks can't seem to see the appeal of all bikes for what they are.....reminders of our past and a great hobby.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Check this out, illustrates the balloon tire bias at the Ann Arbor show. posted by PaulO on 2/27/2002 at 3:10:55 PM
And that's what gets me about the Larz Anderson show - there is a strong bias toward lightweight road bikes.
If you ask me, lightweights all look the same, are boring, unintersting to the general public, and they're only ridden/collected by snobs who shave their legs!

   Tell the swap booth sellers, there is a real growing following posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 2/27/2002 at 7:04:01 PM
I have seen this swap meet grow and expand over the years. So much wonderful growth and progress has taken place. But if you feel not enough of what you are into is represented( like Choppers, musclebikes or any other type of bike) than you need to do what I did. Ten Years Ago, I printed up a flyer and passed it around to every booth and I looked them in the eye and asked nicely and friendly without any attitiude. It was a request that the dealers at Saline bring to the NEXT YEAR'S MEET other things beside balloon tire parts and bikes. I was calling for English bicycles and parts. THEY DID, THE NEXT YEAR! SOME REALLY DID!! THEN THE NEXT YEAR, SOME MORE, AND SO ON !!!
Now last year, I noticed that this needs to be done again with muclebikes and choppers and other bike related items of all sorts. The movement is already started with one dealer bringing in some Chopper stuff. It was wonderful! Paul is a great guy and it is expanding every year. Already it is the largest meet in the U.S. that I know of. A real treat and so many good people too! There was some discussion on the effect of e- bay on the hobby and the swap meet folks I hung with didn't like it one bit.
Bitter e- bay bashing there. It will affect the swap meet scene and I fear, in a negative way. All else was awesome!

I understand this bias towards Balloon tire bikes and parts. I was there, I saw this. I ruffled feathers with my nerve in" Balloon land" But you know what? These are good, decent, really cool folks. A afternoon to feel the real American vintage bike camraderie. What it was that was keeping the other bikes and parts home and not at the meet was that the sellers at the booths, the dealers thought there would be no call for it there, so why bother, the man asked? He said "There aren't enough like you here, Chris!" He was wrong! everybody that thought that was wrong! I introduced him to some of the largest and most hungry Brit bike collectors in the hobby. We went booth to booth and soon it was realized that it was foolish to leave things at home. So you see the bias was working against the very dealers. Once they got it there they found out that many of the underground English Roadster fans snapped it up. I helped open the flood gates up for rod brake Raleigh's and then I saw fellow collectors buy it first from out from under me because they were more aggressive, experienced and clever . One arch rival of mine comes loaded for bear with a fat wallet and a huge truck. I had to laugh and enjoy it all anyways and I did. The little fish that made the diffrence was me!


Even though I am not a balloon tire bike person and I look for other things instead. I want to say that I had a wonderful afternoon anyways and we are so darn lucky to get to shuffle through "Balloon Land" like this one has been. So many parts, such love for a wonderful thing as the bicycle, the Americal Balloon tire bicycle!


   RE:MISC:   Check this out, illustrates the balloon tire bias at the Ann Arbor show. posted by Stacey on 2/28/2002 at 12:02:20 AM
Bob, you have a very valid point. I don't know Paul personally and I'm not at all familiar with the Ann Arbor show. Honestly, I've yet to attend a bike swap meet. Ah, the road to hell...

Anyhow, perhaps Paul is un-aware that there is a percieved bais towards Ballooners. Why not sit down and pen out your concerns about this to Paul in a constructive manner. Something that comes immeditaly to mind is to suggest that he consider doing away with 1st, 2nd, 3rd place prizes and offer awards for best of type (Ballooner, Muscle Bike, English Racer *ducking at my terminology*, lightweight, etc., etc. Then offer a "Viewers Choice" Best in Show. I don't know how big this event is. Depending, you could run the risk of only having one entry per catagory.

Light a candle, instead of cursing the darkness. To voice a complaint without a suggesting an alternative is akin to crying sour grapes. After all, it's easier to fix something that's not working for people if you know how they'd like it work.

Christopher has some wonderful ideas, glad to see him doing something instead of saying "Someone should...". Love ya Chris :-)

In the wind,

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Check this out, illustrates the balloon tire bias at the Ann Arbor show. posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 3/1/2002 at 1:38:36 AM
"Lightweight bikes are uninteresting to the general public." This is probably true, when you think about it.
Snobby? Well, I have met my share.
Then again, the history behind vintage road bikes have not been shown at the swap meets.I wish the Major Taylor fans would assemble a bike or two he rode or some display of some sort and go to the shows and let folks see and learn About Major Taylor.
Whole booths about old riders of bike history. A speech or slide show? I dunno, people might not sit still long enough.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Check this out, illustrates the balloon tire bias at the Ann Arbor show. posted by JimW. on 3/2/2002 at 3:45:57 AM
Maybe it's just me, but I find all bikes fascinating, even some new ones, even in ToysR Us. I hit just about every list here, almost every day. I'm not terribly interested in muscle bikes, although I built one for my daughter. But, I find all the variations to be really interesting. I found one chained to a lamp post today that I'd never seen before.
I studied it for five minutes. Unfortunately, the head badge was missing, and the whole thing had been sprayed silver, even the banana saddle. It had a stamped sheet metal tank with a rectangular opening on the top right half, where a shifter had once been. The rear fender was really interesting. It was in two pieces butted against the seat stays. Kind of cycle style-angular with rounded corners. The front fender was of similar style, except one piece. It was great fun checking it out. I'm sure bird watchers get similar enjoyment from spotting something new.
I generally give road bikes a good inspection too, for the quirky little details that set them apart from one another.
Regarding the leg shaving: Kevin Weiss PhD, of the About.com
bike list sez he shaves his legs because if he falls off his bike and gets road rash, it's less likely to become infected from hair getting into the wound. This reminds me of Chuck Taylor's comments, in Soldier Of Fortune, on the greater magazine capacity of a 9MM handgun over the six-shot capacity of the .45 auto: "a 16-shot clip is very useful if you plan to miss a lot".

AGE / VALUE:   Scat Cat anyone heard of it? posted by: Tony Shade on 2/27/2002 at 5:13:01 AM
I bought a Scat Cat bike a couple of years ago at an automotive swap meet. It is in very good shape and appears to be all original. It's the wildest lime green color with a black seat and black decals on the chain guard. It's a single speed with no hand brakes, imitation springer front forks and the small front wheel.
What i would like to know is if it is worth much before my 5 year old son learns to ride with it?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Scat Cat anyone heard of it? posted by Tony Shade on 2/28/2002 at 6:20:23 PM
I have made an error in my post. I dug the bike out of storage, it turns out it is a kool cat instead of a scat cat. "I BAD" It's a Huffy with frame #1c524331. If anyone has any information on this bike PLEASE let me know!

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Scat Cat anyone heard of it? posted by Craig B. on 3/1/2002 at 5:03:33 PM
They made the "kool kat" only a few years(68-72?) Yours should have a 16x20 framesingle speed), with sissy bar and head rest matching the color of the bike. I know they came in a mustard yellow and the lime green color.
Mine is yellow.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Scat Cat anyone heard of it? posted by ryan on 3/6/2002 at 1:52:30 AM
i have no info about the bike, but i would love to get some pics for my site (geocities.com/thereturnofthesixfootmidget)

AGE / VALUE:   Real or Fake??? posted by: Bob on 2/26/2002 at 2:06:27 AM
Item # 1074666814 on eBay had a Sting-Ray frame listed as an early 1963. Serial # F20636. Isn't That 1962???

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Real or Fake??? posted by brian on 2/26/2002 at 7:35:15 AM
My guess would be a '62...possibly a Typhoon or Fleet? Not sure of those model years, but an early cantliever 'boys' frame. It's easy to call a 20" boys frame a Sting-Ray...it opens a lot more eyeballs. I've restored a lot of 'Rays and built some nice show kustoms...got a '63 frame, primered and hangin' in my garage..I'll get to that one day.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Real or Fake??? posted by Drew on 2/26/2002 at 12:25:49 PM
The first Stingray would have been May or June 0f '63. As mentioned, that one is a pre-Stingray 20" frame. Original paint is the best bet for a sure thing in a '63, people are eaven welding in a serial # from a '63 Typhoon, Fleet, ect. on junior frames of '65-69 to make a fake! My lime '63 also hangs in the basement....almost have all the parts!

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Real or Fake??? posted by Jeff on 3/1/2002 at 12:30:32 AM
Drew-- Please contact me re: your lime '63. I have an original July '63 lime + also have extra parts-original '63 lime dated forks,guards,etc.

AGE / VALUE:   Chris's front wheel posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 2/26/2002 at 1:28:44 AM
I can just imagine this missing wheel of mine rolling and bouncing gleefully down the street away from me. I looked everywhere! Still, It's gone!! It escaped! That's what! After a few adventures and close calls with burly construction men wo want to grab it, it probably will eventually pop into the front fork of somebody who is all upset at missing a wheel.Someone who can't afford to buy a replacement. Picture the unhappy person sitting on the porch step holding the wheel, the stainless steel spokes and n.o.s. dynohub gleaming in the sunlight. A huge smile as the person rides off into the sunset.

MISC:   Stingray spocket posted by: Jim T. on 2/26/2002 at 1:09:30 AM
Who know the correct number of teeth on the rear sprocket for a '63 Stingray?

WANTED:   amf roadmaster aero bee avenger5 speed posted by: jeff kerston on 2/24/2002 at 10:26:07 PM
looking for a aero bee avenger anyone who has 1 or knows of 1 contact me thanks

   RE:WANTED:   amf roadmaster aero bee avenger5 speed posted by ryan on 3/6/2002 at 1:56:22 AM
sorry, i have no idea about your bike but i would love a shot for my site (geocities.com/thereturnofthesixfootmidget)

FOR SALE:   sale/trade: raleigh bicycles clock posted by: john on 2/23/2002 at 11:51:05 PM
for sale or trade yellow raleigh bicycles clock from a bike store. a litle wear. has been there for years. i remember seing it there when i was a kid in the 80's. allthough i think its older. store recently closed. make an offer. looking for manta ray front fender and kickstand, schwinn twinn 3 speed or 5 speed rear wheel/hub. high back sissy bar. yellow streamers. thanks for looking, john.

AGE / VALUE:   headbadge posted by: freddie on 2/23/2002 at 7:30:39 PM
I hope sombody can help me. I have a iverson dragstripper in very good condition but the headbadge is missing.Does any body know where I can get one? I tried ebay and memery lane does not have one but if I could at least get a good closeup of one I could scan and copy. Thanks. Freddie

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   headbadge posted by JimW. on 3/3/2002 at 6:36:24 PM
Conrad Rupprecht has a couple of Dragstrippers, he may have photographs of a headbadge he could share with you. His E-mail address may be found at: http://bikerodnkustom3.homestead.com/barris.html

It may be tricky to reproduce one from a photo, though, because of the curvature. Thinking about it, probably the ideal would be to have a photo and a rubbing of the actual badge. That's the trick where you put a piece of paper over it and rub it with the side of a pencil lead. It would work best with an engraved badge, but it would probably work with a silkscreened one as well. Having the rubbing will give you the exact shape, size and proportion.

I thought I remembered running into a headbadge in a web search for Iverson material for that issue (the current one) of BR&K. I tried again, and couldn't find it. Turns out the headbadge image I saw was a Stelber, which was the parent company of Iverson.

Potentially useful hint: Google has an image search engine now. To find the Stelber headbadge image again, I called up Google/Image Search, keyed in the terms "Stelber" and "headbadge" and it popped right up. This is a pretty wonderful tool to have available to restorers.

AGE / VALUE:   Barracudda...WOW posted by: sambo883 on 2/23/2002 at 3:12:56 AM
Hey Stacey, u got to check this one out. When I saw it, I thought of u and said, "she's got to see this"!
U ALL should look at it. #1075210258
Bye Stacey......(in the wind)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Barracudda...WOW posted by Stacey on 2/23/2002 at 10:11:22 AM
Some guy have all the luck, eh Sambo. Sweet bike, though too rich for my blood! I don't know if the market is ready for a $600 off brander. We sold a Murray Bobbi, 3 spd girls banana bike about six months ago, couldn't even get half that much and it was in the exact same condition too. Brand New, never ridden. Sahme, a bloody shame!

In the wind, (and chilly too)

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Barracudda...WOW posted by Sambo883 on 2/23/2002 at 12:48:51 PM
I wish I could go into my attic and find something like that. No such luck! Maybe a few spider's (from Mars) and a squirrel nest. Talk to u later!

AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn GT 100 derailer origonal to Sting Ray? posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 2/22/2002 at 4:33:16 PM
Was the Schwinn GT 100 derailer ever used as origonal equipment on the 5 speed thumb shifter style blue Sting Ray"
I'm all itching to switch it to a Huret Alvit but not if it ain't proper to do so.
I like the 5 speed thumb shifter up on the handlebars better than the frame mounted stick shift but the down side is that the Sting Ray shifters are sought after.

AGE / VALUE:    Ah Ha! Sorry Dude! posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 2/22/2002 at 3:51:14 PM
I gasped and gulped at seeing it and the silly low price too.I had another estate sale vulture (really interested buyer) right literally on my heels I had to move real quick!
I said "I'll take this!" and I grabed it. The other fellow said something unintelligable and backed off. I pulled the huge Ape Hanger bars off it knowing they go to some bicycle and stored the rest of it.
What these handlebars go to, I'll never know.
Now, with every Muscle bike I see up for sale, I leer at the handlebars on the thing trying to identify what the heck it is that I have. They are huge and so cool! Blue rubber grips with rockets on them.
I do not recognize the stem and, as usual there are no markings on it anywhere to tell me anything. That would be too easy.