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1964 Skyway his and hers

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1964 Skyway his and hers

Old 07-25-16, 08:52 PM
  #1  
gtrdave
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1964 Skyway his and hers

I picked up this pair this morning for cheap. His and hers Skyway single speeds, made in Japan.
They appear to be from 1964 (per a date code on the bottom of the seats) and are in 100% original condition, including the original Skyway tires and seats. The tires and tubes still hold air.
Both bikes have add-on mirrors and bells and the men's bike has a chrome frame pump which looks like a day-two addition from whatever store they might have been purchased from.

From what I've learned, these frames had steel tubing, but aluminum "lugs", so they don't weigh as much as one might expect.







I'm not sure if I'll keep either one or both yet. I don't need the girls bike, but I know it may be tough to sell it separately. For now, I'm just going to clean them up, maybe take the men's bike for a short cruise on a local greenway and then decide what to do with them.
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Old 07-25-16, 09:17 PM
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Are you sure the gent's is a one-speed? The shell of its rear hub looks large enough for it to be a kickback.

Recall seeing these "about town" and in public racks BITD.

Aluminum lugs sounds like the way some C. Itoh machines were constructed. Have you tried checking the lugs with a magnet?
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Old 07-26-16, 03:44 AM
  #3  
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Ah, Skyway. I stumbled across one of these bicycles a few years ago. Though I was unimpressed with the bicycle itself, I did find it interesting, considering the disc brake, elliptical crank rings and a few other "ahead of the game" components. Anyway, my Skyway which I have since donated to Bicycles for Humanity (they are looking to sell the bicycle, in case anyone wants me to post it on the for sale forum)...



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Old 07-26-16, 05:16 AM
  #4  
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My dad bought my mother a blue 3-speed Skyway in the mid-sixties. It had a Shimano twist-grip shifter with white hand grips. I think he paid about $25 new for it. He also bought a black 3-speed men's model with a white Shimano "stick" shift on the top tube. That was probably 1969. I think that one was $29 new. I saw a Power King (Korvettes department store brand name) 3-speed at a garage sale recently. The price? $25! Same deal as the Skyway. Definitely a Raleigh knock-off. I remember them being a very light bike. Not a sturdy bike, though. My memory might be off on this point, but I seem to recall them being a C. Itoh import. C. Itoh imported Bridgestone Kabukis in the 70's. That was before Grant Petersen (Rivendell) joined Bridgestone in the 80's. Bridgestone was one of the largest bike manufacturers in Japan. I don't know if the Skyway was a Bridgestone, but I do know Honda has come a long way in the last 50 years (I.e., things..bikes..have changed a lot since then.)

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Old 07-26-16, 07:22 AM
  #5  
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Skyway was a brand owned by Bridgestone and imported by C. Itoh. Their presence in North America goes back to at least 1963. The serial numbers should corroborate Bridgestone manufacture and allow us to confirm the date.

The aluminum lugs were die cast around the tubes which were plugged and flared to prevent pull-out (see pic). This process was more cost effective than brazing, allowed the joining of dissimilar materials and reportedly reduced stress at the joints. I'm not aware of Bridgestone having this process in the 1960s but it was available by at least the mid-1970s.

The subject bicycles appear to be model 701B & & 701G based on my old, undated Skyway literature.
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Old 07-26-16, 08:03 AM
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Thanks for this great information T-Mar!

Was thinking that from what can be seen of the lugs on these two bicycles they appeared steel. Head looks to be bulge-formed; likely from Nikko Sankyo. So had been puzzled by OP's reference to aluminum lugs.

All cleared up beautifully thanks to T-Mar.
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Old 07-26-16, 08:27 AM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
...Was thinking that from what can be seen of the lugs on these two bicycles they appeared steel. Head looks to be bulge-formed; likely from Nikko Sankyo. So had been puzzled by OP's reference to aluminum lugs....
I'm not convinced that they are the die cast aluminum lugs, though later Skway did use them. Randy's pictured Skyway definitely uses them, as they have the square cut collars with the faux spear points. Also, the cinch bolt ears on the die cast seat lugs broke due to brittleness of the die cast aluminum. Consequently, they went to an expander post but kept the ears for mounting centre-pull brake cable stop hangers. The OP's bicycles have standard cinch bolts and don't appear to have faux spear points on the lugs, so I suspect they are standard, steel lugs. As you can see, the matching die cast BB shell is also very distinctive and examination of this area by the OP would tell us if the new acquisitions use the die cast technology or not.
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Old 07-26-16, 03:22 PM
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Is that a stainless tubed Skway? I have C. Itoh and Kabuki Submariners. I would love to acquire a Skyway Submariner.

Skyway and C. Itoh also made Sting Ray bikes in 3spd IGH and 5 speed versions

IMAG0612.jpg

gravel Kabuki1.jpg

IMAG0782.jpg

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Old 07-26-16, 03:26 PM
  #9  
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Just picked up this small pink 70's Supercycle made in Japan with cast alloy lugs and a 10 speed drivetrain. I have a 1976 Supercycle built by Bridgestone, but with mostly alloy tubes in a beautiful blue.
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Old 07-26-16, 03:36 PM
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The Supercycle Excalibur with Toba mudguards. I rode this bike in a local tour on the weekend. It has turned out to be one of my favorites.
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Old 07-27-16, 08:08 AM
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I am glad that this thread showed up. I have learned more about my Skyway, thanks to this thread, than I new before. Stainless steel was a bit of a surprise. I have always liked the Skyway, simply because it reeks of vintage appeal.
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Old 07-27-16, 09:07 AM
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International was another Canadian brand that had Bridgestone contract bicycles using their die cast lug process
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Old 07-27-16, 11:18 AM
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Bridgestone Submariner. About 1979, I think. Very laid back geometry.

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Old 07-28-16, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Grand Bois View Post
Bridgestone Submariner. About 1979, I think. Very laid back geometry.
I'm pretty sure this one is pre-1978, as the cinch bolt ears on the seat lug had been eliminated by then, based on samples in the database. I should be able to determine the exact year from the serial number.
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Old 07-28-16, 10:06 AM
  #15  
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I don't really care, but I'll get it if you want it.
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Old 08-02-16, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
Are you sure the gent's is a one-speed? The shell of its rear hub looks large enough for it to be a kickback.

Recall seeing these "about town" and in public racks BITD.

Aluminum lugs sounds like the way some C. Itoh machines were constructed. Have you tried checking the lugs with a magnet?
It sure seems like a single speed w/ a coaster brake.

And, yes, I checked the frames w/ a magnet: steel tubing and non-steel lugs.
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Old 08-02-16, 08:02 AM
  #17  
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I did a little steel wool clean-up the the men's bike and it shines a little more than before.



I am probably going to do some disassembly and give it a more thorough detail when I have a little more time.

Last edited by gtrdave; 08-02-16 at 01:06 PM.
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Old 08-02-16, 12:42 PM
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Thanks very much for the response gtrdave! ;^D

Fine job with the clean up; they be lookin' good. :^]
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Old 08-13-16, 09:41 AM
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I'm back with an update on the bikes.
After a quick cleaning and check-up and handlebar/seat/pedal swap, my wife and I went riding down near the beach last week, her on her beach cruiser, naturally, and me on the Skyway.
We ended up doing a 20 mile loop. The 52 year old tires and tubes held up just fine (although the rear now has a slow leak in it).


I've since done a few more mods to the bike; changed the bars to a riser style, added a seat bag and removed the fenders and chain guard. It's now stripped down, light and much more to my liking.


The women's bike is still up in the air as far as its future. My wife might want it (she has yet to ride it) and if not, a friend's wife may want it, but I'll keep it stock and original and let the future owner decide what to do with it.
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Old 03-27-18, 06:17 AM
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thanks for all the info .... i just found a beige '64 frame on the fleamarket ... frame/fork/fenders ... everything else is missing
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