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Old October 13th, 2013, 3:09 PM   #1
clarkbeek
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Default Advice on late eighties Wicked?

Hi All,

I came to this forum to look into selling my old Wicked to get a full suspension bike. After perusing many posts I've caught the bug and decided to fight the good fight and restore it. Curse you all:-)

I've got a few key questions, the first of many, I'm sure:

1. First of all, what year is this bike? I always thought it was an '87, but everything here, http://mombat.org/Fat_Specs.htm, makes it look more like an '89. Serial number is 01199W (I put all this in the frame registry). I measure it to be a 22", but I read somewhere they only made up to 21", so maybe I measured wrong. I bought it in '93.

2. First thing is to take it down to bare metal and repaint or powdercoat. The existing powdercoat, which I had done in '93, is flaking off in sheets. Lots of rust, but all what I'd call superficial. No rust at the welds. If I'm trying to be authentic or if I'm ever going to sell it, should I go for the original color, which was black? Or can I just pick my favorite color? I'm in the marine industry, and I've got gnarly, expensive etch primer, primer, and two-part paints. Any reason NOT to use this, and to favor automotive products or powder coat? Looks like I can get new decals no prob if I want to take it out of incognito mode.

3. The cranks are Cook Brothers Racing RSRs. The non-drive side crank is cracked. I've ridden hard on it and it's never broken, but cracked is cracked. This happened before way back when, and Cook Brothers replaced it for free...and it cracked again in exactly the same spot. Someone is selling a set on ebay right now with a good drive side, but the other side is, guess what?, cracked, right in the same place. Is it worth scouring the world for a replacement, which I fear might crack again, or is there another, vintage-appropriate crank set I might be able to find? I noticed Fat used this crank set on the '88 Team Comp, so might have come from the factory with these cranks.

Wait a minute, upon looking closely at my photos, BOTH sides are cracked..WTF?

That's about it. Almost everything on the bike is original and restoration is straightforward. I put a Manitou 4 fork on it when I got it in '93. A year or two I couldn't find replacement elastomers, but now these enterprising folks have come on the scene: http://www.suspensionforkparts.net/e...d&productId=34

If I'd had to find a suspension fork with a 1" tube, this restoration would have been too expensive. I might have the "original" fork somewhere. It didn't look like anything I've seen in this forum, but was supposedly very light and good...for a regular fork.

Photos 'a plenty attached.

Thanks in advance for any advice, opinions, or things I never thought of..

Cheers,
Clark
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Old October 14th, 2013, 11:38 AM   #2
fatchance
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It looks like quite a project! The bike looks like it needs a lot of work to get it back to its former glory. I would paint it back to its original color and refurbish and or get and original spec parts for it. I think they look nicest original and not customized in my opinion. Good luck with it.
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Old October 14th, 2013, 12:51 PM   #3
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I would get rid of the handlebar first thing. Thats' one part that should not brake under you..
build it straight shimano 89. I would go this route.
I like the orange.. just paint it again at a good shop.
NOthing like having an old mechanical friend back.. worth restoring by all means.
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Old October 15th, 2013, 8:10 PM   #4
I-ROBOT
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Hello Clark
You have a 21" Wicked Fat Chance, most likely welded by me. I tried to do most, if not all of the larger sized frames since I had the highest skill level of the welders at that time. The original fork is quite likely to be a Fat City unicrown fork which is a decent piece for a rigid fork. It doesn't have the appeal of an older box crown or Big One Inch Yo Eddy fork but they were very serviceable and ok on the weight.

The original finish was probably powder coat if you say it was black which was our standard. You can go with powder coat again or, as you say you have access to top-shelf automotive finishes, you can't go wrong with that. We used Dupont Imron on our custom paints (with the powder coat used as a primer) and later we stopped using powder coat altogether and painted everything with Imron. I think that is part of the Axalta spin-off now. Applied properly with the correct preparation, the right finish will last as long as any good car paint job. No difference painting steel tubes versus steel sheet metal. Get that rust off of there! Those tubes are soooo thin.

The welds are the last thing that will corrode. I used an ER80S-D2 filler metal to weld all the steel frames. It out-performs ER70S-2 in strength and fatigue life (We proved that with our own fatigue tester) It is a manganese/molybdenum alloy steel with very little chromium in it. Unfortunately, one of the drawbacks of 4130 chrome-moly steel is that it has less corrosion resistance than plain carbon steel, and that is made even worse since the frames were not heat-treated after welding. The weld heat-affected zones (the areas immediately adjacent to the welds) are the most susceptible and will corrode first. This is why the bottom of the seat tube is so vulnerable.

Take good care of her
Regards
Scott
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Old October 15th, 2013, 10:15 PM   #5
clarkbeek
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Default Cool!

What a fun project this is turning out to be! I didn't expect to hear from the guy who built the bike. I also got a private message from a guy who lives nearby, who's going to come have a look, and who ran into Chris Chance at an event a few weeks ago. He says Chris Chance lives around here too.

Anyway, I've broken the bike down. I looked down the seat tube with a flashlight and there's no significant internal rust. Steering tube is almost shiny metal inside, so onward and upward. My experience with other metal projects is that you can do all kinds of sanding/grinding/brushing to remove rust, and it makes little or no difference in the material thickness, at least no so you can measure it, but Scott points out, those tubes are thin.

The bars aren't as bad as they look in the picture: in the picture it looks like there's a corroded hole, but it's an optical illusion. I'll try to clean them up and repaint.

I'm watching a couple sets of cranks on Ebay.

Still debating the color: The black would be original...I get it...wicked...darkness...black...but I've got some silver Audi paint I bought for some body work on my wife's car, which could look cool with black decals...and I've already got it.

So with the last digit in the serial number being a 9, does that confirm it's an '89?

Cheers,
Clark
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Old October 15th, 2013, 10:22 PM   #6
clarkbeek
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I'm fairly sure the forks my bike came with were "Tange Switchblades," which I might still have around somewhere, but the original Fat forks were long gone by the time I got the bike.
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Old October 17th, 2013, 6:13 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clarkbeek View Post
So with the last digit in the serial number being a 9, does that confirm it's an '89?

Cheers,
Clark

Yes it's an '89. 0119 = the 119th bike made that year. The last "9" is for '89 & obviously the "W" for wicked.
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Old October 21st, 2013, 12:42 PM   #8
Jeeves
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For what it's worth, those bars still look sketchy to me. Those true temper bars were pretty light, and it seems like you've got some sort of white corrosion on them. I'd be inclined to keep an eye out on Ebay or these forums for a replacement in better condition. That's just my opinion, though, YMMV!
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Old October 21st, 2013, 4:24 PM   #9
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solid advice, those bars are toasted
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Old October 30th, 2013, 9:22 PM   #10
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solid advice, those bars are toasted

Too bad because they are Fat City bars!
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Old November 1st, 2013, 11:42 AM   #11
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There's an unprecedented THREE sets of those bars on the 'bay as I type this message.
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