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I am totally new to bicycle restoration. This was a friends fathers bike and has been hanging in a barn for years. I'm going to take a shot at restoring it. Any suggestions on "howto" resources would be great. If anyone has any idea of the age of this model I'd love that too. I understand Wards Hawthorns were produced by a veriety of makers between 1934 and 1960 for Wards department stores.

I had never seen anything like this chain so I included a photo of it too. Pretty cool. I bet this chain ring will last forever!

Cheers!
 

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If I had to guess I would say pre wwII. Definately made for MW, but by who I don't know.

The chain is an inch pitch and you can still get them today.

Will look nice with some elbow grease and a new paintjob on it but it probably will not ever have alot of collector value. Will make a good parade bike though! Looks like all the parts are there to me. Tires and tubes shouldn't be hard to find either. Good luck with it.
 

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Skip Tooth

nickv said:
I had never seen anything like this chain so I included a photo of it too. Pretty cool. I bet this chain ring will last forever!

Cheers!
The chain/chainring is often called a "skip-tooth" and was common on bikes from the 40's. Check the condition of the chain link side plates for cracks radiating from the pin holes -- I've had them break before. A replacement chain can be a bit pricy if you can find one.
I have a few old cruisers in the fleet. I prefer to make the mechanically sound (clean/grease/adjust bearings, carefully remove rust, new tubes and tires if necessary) and run them as-is. I believe the run down original look shows the bikes character. That being said, I also have one from the '70s that I've 'hot rodded' and will eventually get paint, but the rest remain as I've found them.

They're a lot of fun for trips to the store, park, around the block with the kids, etc.

Cheers! and have fun!
 

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Definitely mid to late 30s. The giveaway is the way the rear dropouts face to the back of the frame. For some reason, bike manufacturers switched to the forward-facing dropouts after WWII.

I'd clean it up, make it mechanically sound, and ride it as-is, has more vintage soul that way.

Mark has a really good set of resto tips and instructions on his site:

http://www.bunchobikes.com/

Have fun!
 
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