Mystery Cruiser with upgrades.

Spotted on North Mississippi Avenue. Now this bike is all sorts of interesting! Unknown balloon tire/cruiser frame, probably mid-century vintage. Newer front fork with cantilever brakes. And a Sturmey-Archer SAB-3 three speed/drum brake rear hub. Love the look of the brick tires too, almost match what I have on the Crested Butte!


4 thoughts on “Mystery Cruiser with upgrades.

  1. A few years ago, I had a bike very similar to this, even with red brick tires. It was a circa 1949 Hiawatha built by Cleveland Welding with a Bendix two-speed lever controlled hub, that at a quick glance looked like a SA 3-speed. Mine was mostly original, with a drum brake front hub, a streamlined horn tank, and wide arching handlebars. It was a nice ballooner, but it was a behemoth, and any ride farther than a few miles was onerous. I eventually acknowledged that it was too small for me, and sold it.

    • Yeah. From time to time I’d like to find an old balloon tire bike, but realize how heavy it would be. Heck, I sort of had that with the Cycle Truck. I’m now pretending that my Crested Butte is a “cruiser”.

      As for the rear hub, the hub on this mystery bike is indeed a Sturmey-Archer SAB-3 hub. I saw the markings on the hub, it’s just not that obvious in the photo.

      • The eye-catching curvy frame notwithstanding, your Crested Butte is heaps better than any ballooner in every respect, and likely just as cushy a ride. Those hefty old bikes look great, but they’re just not much fun to ride very far. Due to their development process, early mountain bikes are essentially improved versions of the balloon tire bikes from which they came, so yes, you have a “cruiser”, just with greater capability.

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