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New Mystery Frame

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New Mystery Frame

Old 06-10-13, 07:50 AM
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drew944
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New Mystery Frame

I hate to be the next "I bought this frame and have no idea what it is" guy, but I bought this frame and have no idea what it is and could you some help. I bought it on Ebay because of what I was hoping was a Schwinn Stem, and it actually was a Schwinn stem, so I am happy. I have been scouring the frame for any sort of marks, numbers, etc and all I have come up with is a number on the bottom bracket that is either 801 or 708, the fork is stamped Made in England on the fork crown, the seat stays are open, Dunlop rims, a stamp near the seat post bolt that looks like an ANO or something of that sort. Also, it is A&P tubing, as stamped on the steerer tube, and the threaded stem collar is stamped "Wallon and Brown England" on the bottom. I will get some better pictures when I get home today, but for now all I have are the pictures from the auction. Any help or guidance would be greatly appreciated. The plan is to have it copper plated, I just wanted to make sure I wasn't copper plating a jewel.
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Old 06-10-13, 05:59 PM
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Update...pulled this thing the rest of the way apart and found some more stuff. Crank and chainring are Williams dated 1942. BB is bayliss Wiley. One lug has 61 1/2 stamped into it...guessing size. The fork blades have an A in a circle stamped in them near the crown. I'll upload more pictures tomorrow when I'm at a real computer. Thank you
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Old 06-10-13, 06:03 PM
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Old 06-10-13, 06:30 PM
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Well, A&P stands for Accles and Pollack, a competitor of Reynolds who favoured CrMo tubing.
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Old 06-10-13, 09:39 PM
  #5  
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Can't help ID the frame but just want to say what a great looking old racer you scored! Copper plating would look nice. Nickel plating would also look nice. Just promise us that you won't remove the derailleur hanger, Drew.
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Old 06-10-13, 11:29 PM
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Sweet fixie, brah.

Seriously, what the hell is that thing? And once you're done yanking the coveted Schwinn stem, I'll take the rest off your hands. I could use a tarck bike in my size.

I am seriously jonesing on those 40's era quick releases on the hub axles. In their own way, they are perfect. (But probably kinda brittle, by now).
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Old 06-11-13, 05:44 AM
  #7  
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So I've got this thing pretty much torn down and I took some more pictures. Still on the fence as to whether I need to get this thing restored to factory correct (still don't know what factory), or if I'd be committing a crime by copper plating the frame. Those wheel nuts are stamped diamant, so they might be available somewhere out there. If it's any clue, I put a picture of the seat post clamp bolt in there as well. It has a small guide on it under the head and it matches a groove in the clamp. Also a similar design is employed on the steerer tube clamp.
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Old 06-11-13, 05:58 AM
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Those seat lug cinch bolts are pretty generic.
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Old 06-11-13, 06:15 AM
  #9  
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I briefly owned a Swedish track bike with inch-pitch ("block") chain. Does anyone know when did standard 1/2" generally take over for track bikes?

Very nice find, and with a real Major Taylor stem. (I have the factory original Ambrosio variant on Capo #2 -- Otto favored track bars and adjustable reach stems on many of the road bikes he made.)
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Old 06-11-13, 07:15 AM
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Is there a serial number stamped on the back of the fork crown?

The fact that you have English components, including 36h Dunlop rims, suggests this is an American made frame. An English bike would have 32h front and 40h rear. I would look at the list of American builders of the period (see here for a start). I have a 1936 Drysdale track bike that has a very similar mix of English stuff -- 36h Dunlop rims, Walton and Brown BB, BHC and Bayliss Wiley hubs, etc. Every lug is stamped "MADE IN ENGLAND". Speaking of which, when you saw

Originally Posted by drew944 View Post
... a stamp near the seat post bolt that looks like an ANO or something of that sort...
I assume that's [MADE IN ENGL]AND.

I don't know what 61 1/2 means, but if it's American I kinda doubt it's the frame size. Is it a 61.5 cm frame? English parts and American builders both used inches.

Post more photos of the lugs, please!

Last edited by rhm; 06-11-13 at 07:21 AM.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:39 AM
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I was assuming the 61-1/2 was the lug angle.

It could be American but is there a specific reason we're dismissing British? The Schwinn stem could simply be a replacement after it got to the USA. The moment I saw the open stays and A&P tubing, I thought it might be a CCM Flyer, but it's not.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:50 AM
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I'd put new consumables on it such as tires, chain, and bar tape. I'd soak what I could in Oxalic Acid and leave it be.

IMO, that bike looks great the way it is. Like Lascauxcaveman, I'd like to have that bike in my stable.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
I was assuming the 61-1/2 was the lug angle.
Yes! For the lower head lug, that just right.

Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
It could be American but is there a specific reason we're dismissing British? The Schwinn stem could simply be a replacement after it got to the USA. ...
Right. If the stem is really a Schwinn stem, and it's original, the frame would have to be a Schwinn; otherwise, it's a replacement. But a replacement part or two on a 70 year old bike should hardly surprise anyone.

Similarly, the only reason to dismiss British is that the 36-spoke rims (and hubs, if they are English) were made for export. The original wheels on an English bike would be 32/40. Of course this could be a British frame with replacement wheels.

That said, I take the 36h wheels as a hint that this is an American frame. Since there were hundreds of British frame builders, but only a few dozen American ones, I would first try to exclude the American builders, one by one. Then I'd start looking at British ones.

Last edited by rhm; 06-11-13 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 06-11-13, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by mparker326 View Post
I'd put new consumables on it such as tires, chain, and bar tape. I'd soak what I could in Oxalic Acid and leave it be.

IMO, that bike looks great the way it is. Like Lascauxcaveman, I'd like to have that bike in my stable.
+1. Great bike. And a useful size too.
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Old 06-11-13, 10:05 AM
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The stem is really a Schwinn Stem, but I'm thinking it isn't original to the bike. The lugs don't look like anything Schwinn I've seen, but I certainly have not seen it all. The only maker I've been able to find that has similar lugs is Drysdale and the circled A made me think Alvin Drysdale, but I am not sure. There are no holes in the head tube for a badge, so that discounts some makers. Attached are some more pictures. I can get some more after work today (we just kicked to 7x12's, so I'll be pretty tied up for the next couple weeks) but I can try. Thanks for all the help so far.
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Old 06-11-13, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by drew944 View Post
The stem is really a Schwinn Stem
Frame doesn't look like a Schwinn, though the fork might be.
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Old 06-11-13, 11:05 AM
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Copper plating would be really cool, it would go a different shade every year.
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Old 06-11-13, 11:31 AM
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I'm sure the circled A has nothing to do with Drysdale. Accles & Pollock tubing can have an elliptical stamp with A&P in it. I wonder if Reynolds "A" tubing could be a circled A?

Drysdale bikes from the 30's, from when he ran the "Velox Cycle Corp" have a serial number of six digits, starting with two digits that may reflect the year (I've seen 36, 37, and 39, which may correspond to the dates these bikes were made; or this may be a coincidence). These numbers are stamped under the BB and on the back of the fork crown. Later Drysdale bikes (like mine, from 1954) have no serial number at all. Drysdale workmanship varies and can be pretty crude by modern standards.
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Old 06-11-13, 11:53 AM
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I would call the workmanship on this bike crude. It has the A&P stamp on the steer tube so I would expect it to be A&P throughout. Would a picture of the oil port fitting help at all?
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Old 06-11-13, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
I'm sure the circled A has nothing to do with Drysdale. Accles & Pollock tubing can have an elliptical stamp with A&P in it. I wonder if Reynolds "A" tubing could be a circled A...
I was wondering that too, but thought the probability quite low for a few reasons. While manufacturers do mix tubesets I thought it strange to mix an A&P steering tube with Reynolds A-blades. In the 1970s Reynolds normally stamped their name, tubeset and gauge but I guess being earlier, the practice could have been different. As stated earlier, I've seen A&P stampings bearing both A&P and an A, indicating they may have had an A quality set, similar to Reynolds, or that it was a supplemental company marking. Taking this into consideration with the fact that the steerer is A&P, I though it more likely that blades were also A&P. However, I wouldn't totally dismiss the Reynolds possibility.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:09 PM
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I have never been able to identify more than one or two tubes on any given frame, and the ones I could identify, on old English and American frames, and I have yet to see an old stamp indicating 531. But I have definitely seen A&P stamps on the steerer of a frame with an authentic and original 531 decal. So the idea that someone mixed different types of tubing is perfectly acceptable to me.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:26 PM
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I did some more looking on the fork for anymore identifiers but I came up empty. I did notice some script on the steer tube collar. It looks like J&P or seething like that. I tried to get some pictures but it's not easy...tried to use the flash to catch a reflection. I know it probably doesn't help since it's a pretty changeable part but it's something.
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Old 06-12-13, 08:18 AM
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Just received this message from the seller, " I have a feeling that this bike is British because neither a metric or American wrench fits the nut to adjust the seat height.But this is only a feeling on my part. I acquired the bike in 1989 from a guy that knew very little about it.. I put a chain, seat and new tires on it. Other than those things the bike is just like I acquired it.
I rode it around a few times and then put it in my shed. I have always been amazed by how thin the frame tubing sounds when you tap it with your finger nails. I think it's a interesting bike too, and I wish I could tell you more about it; but that is all I know."
Still not much more help.
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Old 06-12-13, 08:36 AM
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No, not much help.

I'm still thinking it's from an American maker such as Drysdale.

Are you familiar with the Classic Rendezvous google group? I suggest you join that and post your questions there. The guys who read that are more opinionated than we are, and often wrong, but I suspect you will find someone there who knows more than anyone here.

What does copper plating involve? If it means polishing out all the file marks etc then no, I think that's a bad idea. If it just means putting a thin coat of copper over the bare metal, then I don't see any harm in it but from what I see of the workmanship I think it would look better in paint. I believe it is worth a professional paint job, but not until you figure out what it is. Then get correct graphics. I mean, if it turned out to be a Dick Power frame... well, how cool would that be?
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Old 06-12-13, 08:52 AM
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Great thread! Keep it coming!
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