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70's Varsity Fork Repair

Old 03-20-18, 02:41 PM
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70's Varsity Fork Repair

I'm in the middle of rebuilding my dad's old Varsity as a surprise for his 50th birthday. I found it in my grandparent's old storage unit and he has no idea they kept it.

The old fork is bent - the bike was used in a parade float and the fork got bent somehow - but the rest of the body is fine.

I ordered a replacement off ebay in the same color of Kool Lemon (aka the original yellow), however the steer tube is too long. The description on ebay wasn't entirely accurate so I wasn't able to catch this before ordering.

In any case - the fork and tube are a perfect fit and in the perfect matching retro color, however the tube is ~8" and I need it to be ~5" to fit the original frame. Does anyone have any ideas how to go about cutting it? Essentially all I need done is for someone to cut off 3" and re-thread the end.

I've spoken to several local machine & tool shops but they weren't much help because they didn't have a lathe big enough to handle the odd dimensions of the fork since it's one welded piece. I didn't think this was going to be such a difficult task, but it's proving to be one.

If I can't think of anything else, my other option is to just buy a correctly sized fork (some available on ebay) in the wrong color, and if I really care then repaint it to match the original.

I know I'm being picky, but I'm really trying to keep this as original/retro as possible.

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Old 03-20-18, 03:35 PM
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Old 03-20-18, 03:38 PM
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An older [better] bike shop will have a steer tube threading die. The tube would be cut and re-threaded.
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Old 03-20-18, 03:39 PM
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Do you have any old-school bike shops in your area or small-volume framebuilders? They might have the tooling to cut threads into that fork. Faced with a similar issue some years back, I ended up going to a framebuilder, who did the job. An alternative is to buy a chromed replacement fork for a 27” wheel. Check niagara cycles.
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Old 03-20-18, 03:41 PM
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A good bike shop should have the tools and be able to add threads and cut it to the desired length. If the shops in your area don't want to do it, contact a custom frame builder.
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Old 03-20-18, 03:52 PM
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The nice steel blade could be straightened by an old school person with the correct tools.
Especially if this is to look tat and not be a rider.

Most metro areas have a restorer.
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