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Been a while... [Sep. 15th, 2007|04:05 pm]

Between feeling defeated and having school start up I haven't gotten a chance to work much on my bike at all. Finally I realised that if I cant do it perhaps I should turn to someone pro to help. 

There is a bike store in the Annex I took my bike to, these people have helped out with a few other questions and I figured they might be able to help me out. One guy found a place that has my apparently rare type of tires in stock and said it would be ready in about a weeks time. The tech loosened the pedal and told me my bike was a waste of time and a money pit. 

He said theres a cup or wedge at the bottom of the shaft for the handle bars to be screwed into, that wedge is off centre and apparently Very dangerous to ride in such a case because at any time something could knock those handlebars loose and i could lose teeth, break my nose ect ect. Lots of badness...Even more depressed than when I went in; we took the bike home and left it in the parking garage. 

I sulked for a few days about it, almost a week. I hate the idea that all my work wasn't enough to resuscitate her. My boi felt the itch to have a bike of his own, something not too expensive off craigslist or something, plus wanted to find a new bike for me. This prompted going to a slew of bike shops to see if they had anything in our price range. 

We went to www.mikethebike.ca and I asked a few questions because it said recycled bikes. He said that its no problem, they deal with this sort of thing often and would probably be able to help out. So tomorrow were taking her in there to see what he can do. I still have my hopes up that she can be saved! 

The other bike we got is a guys bike, second hand, nothing fancy. Its just supposed to be something used for bopping around the city and on paths. Only cost 60$ so its not a huge deal that its ugly and not pretty. Were going to fix it up over the winter.
I still have my fingers crossed that I can get a day to ride her before the snow flies.

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First Spray! [Sep. 2nd, 2007|08:16 pm]
I`ve been Super busy with the long weekend! I hope I get some time to paint more tomorrow.
Tonight though I decided to do a quick test spray on the chain guard.  I washed it clean after I had sanded it almost compleatly down to metal, air dried.  Laid it down on news paper, shook the can and sprayed.  I did a almost full cover of the top of the chain guard 

Smelled bad but cleared away quickly.  I realized my landlord probably wouldn`t be thrilled to know I am spray painting on my balcony.

I moved it away from the spot I sprayed it on to try and prevent it from sticking to the paper.  Dabbed extra off the bottom edges to prevent solid drips. 
I will probably move it a couple more times just to make sure the paint pools evenly  
I wonder what happends if you paint it and let it hang upside down?
From what I have read so far it says that you should let it dry 24 hours before applying any more paint, wet sand it with black high grit sandpaper, wash, apply paint, then add top coat.  This is super exciting!!!
I noticed that there was a few lil spots near the back of it, now sure how they got there!
I hope there is no worry about multipul coats of primer...
For now I am giving up on removing a few pieces of the bike.  I realize at this point I can`t remove the bottom braket like i was hoping. Also the handle bars or threaded fork . I used Gerry`s resource which seems like it should have worked however there is no  "bolt on top of the gooseneck". And so far no amount of banging has seemed to have loosened anything... quelle dommage!
I got some masking tape and plan to tape up anything I don`t want to paint - which may result in some places not being as well painted as I would like of course.  I will do my very best to keep everything clean and smooth.  I am Very disapointed about this.  I promise myself future bikes will not be let down this way!
There is also this screw on the handle bars.  I can loosen it but I can`t seem to be able to remove it - so I will get in there with some steel wool and coke and clean off the rust, dry is super well and polish it.

My bike won`t turn out as amazing as I had hoped, I know I can work on things as I get the chance too but transportation that functions is more important than detailed perfect paint job at this point.
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(no subject) [Aug. 30th, 2007|05:16 pm]

Don`t you hate it when you lose what you type? Grr It can put me off typing for days I swear to God!

The other night I tried to work at removing the bottom bracket, at the suggestion of 

ban_guzzi.  I learned the bottom bracket in this bike is one piece, it includes the crank - which the chain goes on, the pedals, bearings inside that need to be packed with grease - and can`t be removed if you don`t have the right tools or read the proper directions.. *shameshame*


Everyone on here is great about suggesting sites, but I find myself going back to the one I started with.  Perhaps cause its based in Montreal, Quebec - which is were I lived in the summer with my honey.  Mostly though its the step by step pictures and writings, kind of like how I try to do.
His name is Gerry and he is super helpful with anything that you have questions about on his blog.


Although I neglected to actually read the directions and just wasted time and energy... ... Sunscreen song "Read the directions, even if you don`t follow them"

Here are the true and proper directions to completing this project. 

Do Not Follow My Directions!

Task - Remove Bottom Bracket
Tools - Red ball point pen

1.) Skip steps 1-3 they are only preparation for the real work.
2.) Spend 10 minutes trying to take a nut cap off counter-clockwise before realizing the threads go the other way.
3.) Remove nut cap and washer, slide down the crank arm.

4.) Use a red pen to loosen and remove bearing cone.

5.) Eww.

6.) Remove bearings with the same red pen, also very eww.

7.) Slide bearings down crank arm, slide crank arm down even through its apparent the pedal won`t go through the bearing cup.

8.) Spend 11 minutes trying to figure a way to take the pedals off before reading steps 1-3...
9.) Put everything back the way it was.
10.) Try to take off pedal from crank arm, with the wrong tool.

11.) Get wrong tool stuck and make trying to get it off a game for the next 2 days! Yay!

Seriously I need a different tools, which aren`t an option until I get my student loan money, or a job! Thanx to


squidleyfor telling me exactly which ones to buy.  

Ever heard a girly girl trying to explain which kind of tool she needs?
"One of the crank wrench things with two heads, its skinny and about this big (with fingers)."
Yeah - Guilty!
School is starting on Tuesday, so much for ridding her to school on my first day!  Unless I get a sudden burst of energy and money! 

I will be starting a live journal of my experience and jewellery. 


Thank You to Everyone for Comments and Friend Adds!

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(no subject) [Aug. 28th, 2007|10:49 am]
[Current Mood |ecstaticecstatic]

I`ve had journals online before this is the first time I actualy got spotlighted!  Thank You so much for the comments!  I think its awesome other people dig retro bikes too!

I had an epiphany last night about the color of my bike.  Totaly New Direction with the paint ...maybe!
We`ve been having a few visitors crawl into our apt since we moved in, I don`t think they`re the normal T.O pests and we actualy love having them around.
Lady Bugs!

So I am thinking about painting the entier body cherry Red, the details glossy black!  The basket will stay the dark brown color it already is, add a green leaf ribbon and shes good to go!  Maybe get a sticker made for her chain guard the reads `LadyBird`!
I was super excited about this idea yesterday when I came up with it!  
I haven`t taken many photo`s of the bike because I`ve only been sanding her the last couple days. 
I`ve only got a photo of another bike  that I saw downtown.  But I promise More photos and details Soon!
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The Morning After... [Aug. 20th, 2007|08:38 pm]
[Current Location |Downtown Toronto, Ontraio]
[Current Mood |contemplativecontemplative]

If bikes have personalities then I am sure our girl here feels pretty violated!  

All here pieces ripped off stripped and sanded, her stickers removed (oops), and her future uncertain... I know I would be upset!

Last night felt like alot of work for little result.  I went to Canadian Tire today to buy some black sandpaper.  
Which I hope works better than wood sand paper...Its been far too cold for me to actualy go out and start working, the wind is brutal today as well.  Thankfully even with all the people around the building yesterday no one complained about the mess or smell! 
I posted the question on facebook, what color do you think I should paint my bike.  Tough question!!

Originally she was peacock green body with what looks like olive green details; I dont think thats Anyones Style! 

My original thoughts was to paint her body white with her details silver and shimmery.  This is super hard to do apparently, because you can`t leave exposed metal and the chrome paint comes off if its rubbed... alright... isnt that what top coat is for?
Someone suggested Red body with white details.  I dig this.  Its very flashy but I know my style could pull it off.  My worry here is someone might try to steal it.
Also someone suggested Mint green with white details.  This is really not my style and I don`t think it would look the way I was hoping.
Light blue is Out of the question :p

Any idea`s or votes would be great.  I am really kind of stuck on the color.
These are the last of the photo`s from trying to stip and sand down the bike.  I hope I get some time tomorrow to sand more, perhaps tonight who knows.  I do know that I am going to be applying for jobs soon so I have someplace to work on weekends and evenings during school, so that will limit the amount of time I have to spend with my bike.  How disappointing!
We won`t have any money for this bike until Thursday next week, which is Cole`s payday.  We are hoping to buy tires, the rest of the paint and perhaps new chain then.  So for now its all about primer and sanding.  Not Too interesting I am sure.

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Attack of BioHazard Woman! [Aug. 19th, 2007|02:55 pm]
[Current Location |Downtown Toronto, Ontario]
[Current Mood |frustratedfrustrated]

So heres me all suited up!  Head to toe Covered ready to spray toxic chemicals onto the bike!
Red and white polka-dot bandana on my head, Cole`s chemical mask, long sleeves, long pants, rubber gloves and of course - Army Boots!
I can`t go and ruin a good pair of shoes now can I!
I decided to start out with the chain guard, just to get an idea of how much i needed where.  Let it sit for a few moments then removed what had already started to bubble up.  Not much came off but I only sprayed a few times very quickly.
Then I was planning to do the rest of the details.  I sprayed down the mud flaps and chain guard.  I was under the impression that covering the whole thing with spray would strip everything off down to the metal.  
I realized by this point that the can wouldn`t stop spraying... that I didn`t need to hold down the nozzle to get the stuff to come out.  I called Cole told him what was going on, he suggested I might as well do the rest of the bike.  So... I did! I sprayed down the entire thing a few times and used up the entire can, which seemed to be the only way to make the thing stop spraying!!  I let it sit for a while, perhaps a little more than half an hour like the can said.  
I grabbed a plastic spatula, steel wool, a metal scraper and some green scrubby sponges.  
The guy at Canadian tire must have never used this stuff because it didn`t come off in nice even strips, in fact it didn`t even bubble all the areas I sprayed.  I wondered if the product was defect since the can apparently was!  

I would Not suggest using this spray to anyone!  Certainly not on a bike!  Although once the sanding started and caried on into the evening I realized perhaps this stuff wasn`t SO bad...!
I will post the photos of my sanding later as they still need to be edited.
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Ready...Set!! [Aug. 18th, 2007|02:40 pm]
[Current Location |Downtown Toronto, Ontario]
[Current Mood |bouncybouncy]

This bike has been taken down to her bare elements!  She`s bearing years and years of use and paint, perhaps even done in love.  She`s getting ready for her transformation - similar to an extreme make over.  

Paper has been put down to protect all parties included.  The toxic spray paint urges users to wear a mask and handle with extreme care.  Its too windy to spray today, the temperature and brightness fluctuates to huge degrees.  

However my love and I went out shopping in China town and the Kensington market.  I found a basket of dark yet strong wicker, wood and hinges.  I plan to paint it white to match the body of the bike, all details in shimmering gray or crome, still up for debate. 

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Canadian Tire / Bike Store [Aug. 16th, 2007|12:25 pm]
Today we decided I need some more tools in order to make this project work.  We are on a Very fixed budget with this bike.  Cole was sweet and put up with me wandering around the store in circles.  
Realizing that school starts in 18 days, I am no longer expecting to ride this bike to school my first day, which is diapointing but fine.  At Canadian Tire a guy explained that paint thinner won`t get rid of bike paint, and the steel wool I bought will only get gummed up and make a huge mess.  He gave me a chemical paint stripper, highly toxic - and said this will bubble up the paint and make it easy to scrape off in big long strips.  He also said the chrome car paint i bought won`t cut it, it can`t take a top coat, it will scrach and rub off constatly.  He suggested Tremclad paint.  I also got some crap on my hand from a leeky can... stupid can...
We stopped at the bike store on Bloor St near the Annex.  We had been here before, its a high end bike store to the best I can tell. 
I spoke to a sales guy there.  He suggested Tremclad, told me that if spokes are missing on the tires its very likley they will need new wheels, tubes and tires.  To the tune of $120 + .  Of course I want the white tires I saw in the window!  They would go perfect with the new color scheme I have planned, chrome details with a white body.  
He also strongly encouraged the primer and topcoat, which is good - I wanted to make all the steps suggested but didn`t want to waste any time.  if primer was a waste of time, someone needed to tell me.  
Thinking about the tires, looking at the photos of the stripped body I started pulling more parts off the bike.  Wheels, the tube and tire came off easily from the first wheel.  The front mudflap, the Amazing double kick stand! I LOVE this kickstand and I am So glad no one ever took That off!  
I am having troubles with the handle bars, and Cole suggested I leave them on anyways so I don`t screw up the control of the hand bars, and the pedals stayed on too.  I was concerned about there being disks and ballbearings controling the stopping and starting and didn`t want to mess with them.  I feel good that these few pieces can be covered for the painting and still remain intact without problems.  *fingers crossed*  Cole is Very patient with my new obession! *kisses*

U-Fix-It by XCel `Automotive Paint Stripper
Tremclad White Primer for Galvanized Metal

-Front Mudflap
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Piece by piece [Aug. 15th, 2007|11:35 am]
[Current Location |Downtown Toronto, Ontario]
[Current Mood |determineddetermined]

The details were the main reason I wanted a vintage bike.  Mud flaps, chain guard, room for a big basket - these retro qualities will be perfect for a student going to school in the big city!  There are companies that have started making these bikes new, with the same details.  They usualy run somewhere between $400-$900 depending on the model. 

I know something about old cars, bikes, ect... although they may not be as Easy to use as modern things, there is a reason they still exist today - and its Certainly not because people took good care of them!  They are built like tanks!  Solid steel for the most part, and they can take some magor abuse!  However there are downfalls such as worn out moving parts, how heavy the thing is (but I brought it upstairs so it cant be That bad), and how much energy it takes to make it work.  In this case, also the energy that makes it Look Good!

I started pulling off the details one by one, taking photos as I went in hopes of keeping a visual journal of what goes where and how.  

I looked online at cleaning tips, i have my personals faves; Coke a cola, bleach, nailpolish remover, and comet are my tough job cleaners for the house, this is a whole other animal tho!  
I put the pieces I took off into a combo of bleach and water (1/10) and nailpolish remover.  This took the rust off Very well, however not as much of the paint as I wanted.  I want every metal detail on this bike to sparkle.  Even little screws, something tells me they will need more than a chemical bath to make that happen!

Under the pieces I took off I started to see the life this bike lived. 
It started out green, under the mudflaps you can see a dark olive color, followed by a dark blue, then light baby blue matching the rest of the bike, then the white.  All of these paints went on the surface only, no one took this bike appart to paint it!
Under the body you can see a green - blue color I likened to peacock green.  Which in itself is a Great color, and if I felt sure that it would be free from scraches and rust I would probably try to return her back to her former glory.  However its clear thats not the case.  
At this point I am checking out websites, I wrote to one site asking about colors.
I read his tips on painting a bike  - he didn`t suggest leaving any untreated metal.  So this means if I do go with the silver body and white details I can`t leave it crome to the elements.  Which makes sense of course.

-Back mudflap
-Chain guard
-Failed to remove handlebars

Removing the Seat

  Note- When I actualy loosened the seat I found a large white spider waiting under there for me.  I told her she doesn`t have to go home but she can`t stay here!  When I returned to capture or move her she had already made her way out.  A little freaked out, this is was resulted in ALL the photos having Raid beside them!
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Bringing The Bike Home [Aug. 14th, 2007|11:28 am]


I posted a wanted add online, someone responded telling me there was a bike in the trash not far from where we just moved in. So my honey and I got in the car and drove there. We found a bike, unchained, by the trash, no one was home at the house it was at. 

So I started riding her away. First thing I noticed was the 2 flat tires, somehow I get the feeling I might regret riding her with 2 flat tires down the road. We put her in the car and took her home, she was set up on the balcony. 

She still has stickers but they are peeking out from under at least 4 layers of old paint. The body is a brutal baby blue, the details are white. The frame seems to fit me perfectly, everything but the tires, and perhaps the chain seem very strong and ready to work after a bit of WD40.

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