Here is an old project that I finally delivered on. The situation: Someone came by with an old bike. I mean old, about 1905 old. It was her grandfather’s bike, built by her great-grandfather. He built bikes in Baltimore for people in the circus. She brought in some really neat articles about the shop. So there is the bike, wooden 12″ wheels attached to this tiny blue steel frame. One catch, there is no saddle. I grabbed their contact information and told them I would think about how we could have an old saddle that looks like it belongs on a 1905 kids bikes.
My plan was to cut up an old brooks saddle. I sat in the shop waiting. A few months later one finally came in rotten. The owner was looking for a new saddle to keep on riding. I asked if I could have the old one for a project. I cut the old rivets out and brought the frame into the welding shop. Luckily the rails were stainless steel and welding was nothing too exciting. The frame was shortened by about 3 inches. It looked like it belonged on a BMX bike. I was barking up the right tree.
I took a run over to Tandy Leather. They have copper rivets for leatherwork. The idea was to use the copper rivets to rivet what was left of the leather back to the frame after trimming the torn nose off. Now we are starting to look like a saddle and make this old family member complete again. I wasn’t trying to make a beautiful saddle. I wanted a saddle that matches the age, style, and stories of the old bike.