SkateBike Restoration Update



In “Restoring my Skatebike” I described the bike and my plans to restore it. I dismantled the unit and set out to buy replacement parts. Fortunately, most are available off the shelf.

My first stop was Bay Cycle and Sports in Pickering. There were two challenges to my visit. The first had to do with the fact that I went when they were having a summer tent sale and it was packed. Thanks to the guys in the repair shop, however, I got the new wheel, tire/tube, chain, pedals and seat post. The wheel has a coaster brake, which several other skate bikes used. I always found reaching under the seat to stop inefficient, and frankly, embarrassing. The hand brake comes off easily, and the lever is held on with two screws, so I could mount it again if I want to.

Old Crank Cotter

Old Crank Cotter

What is a crank cotter?

What is a crank cotter?

The cranks proved to be a problem. While the bottom bracket (BB) is a standard size, the cranks are very short (100 mm). Removing the cranks was difficult, as the cotters that hold them on were in solid. The cranks and BB proved to be OK except for some surface corrosion. Buying a replacement would be difficult, so I decided to clean them up and reuse them. The crank cotters on the bike were corroded and damaged, but I couldn’t find replacement parts at Bay Cycle Sports. A search of the web led me to Mark Stonich at Bikesmith Design & Fabrication. A set of Grade A cotters is in transit from Minneapolis. Thanks, Mark.

P1030448 P1030438

On to the skateboard parts. The truck is an old school mount (2.5″ vs 2.125″), and I needed only one truck. Gord at Area 51 provided the answer with a single Tracker RT-X. Gord also gave me advice on other bits, such as the best riser for the situation. I ordered Powell/Peralta Mini Cubic 64 wheels in all black, as they match the black tire and new wheel rim.

Tracker RT-X 139mm

Tracker RT-X 139mm

Powell / Peralta Mini Cubic 64

Powell / Peralta Mini Cubic 64

A friend is giving me access to his sand blasting cabinet to strip the frame. Then I have to figure out how I will paint it.


  1. Cameron August 18, 2017

    I am in the process of cleaning up a LeRun skate-bike. The riser is rock solid, making steering almost impossible. Which riser did you end up using for your rebuild?

    Your site was a great find… thanks for taking the time to publish.

    • Rich Helms August 18, 2017


      There are two parts to your answer. The riser is the part between the bottom of the frame and the truck.
      In this picture it is black and the four nuts/bolts go through it. That is sold and has no give. It is not what allows steering.

      The bushing is what allows steering. These come in a variety of flexes. My new truck came with a fairly soft pair. You also change how easy it is to steer by how tight you make the nut.

      I am not a light guy and I found the one it came with too soft so too sensitive. I bought a few sets but ended up using a fairly firm set. Skateboard truck bushings are measured by durometer, or hardness. Most companies use the Durometer A scale, which ranges from 1-100 (the higher the number, the harder the bushings). You want double barrel bushings. Look for bushings designed for downhill. They are designed for slow turns.

      Details on bushings:

      You are most welcome.

  2. Rich Helms July 9, 2017


    As you can see here I restored mine. The parts are a bit of a challenge as they are mostly old school but in the various posts I go into details on them. Brakes are the easiest to get and fix. A new wheel is also pretty easy. The only question on a wheel is the type of hub gearing. You can go free wheel ( like the original ), coaster brake or fixed gear like a unicycle. I went coaster brake as I wanted original hand brake as well as a coaster setup. I found I mostly use the hand brake but like having the option. Coaster is the easiest to find.

    Fixed hub is the most exotic as you can even pedal and go backward.

    Send me pictures and detailed questions. I can post here and others can see your restoration. Congratulations


  3. John Fedor July 8, 2017

    We have just been given a red 1983ish minson skate bike. Should we leave it as is, or restore the worn parts? Neat bike, it does need bb, brake pads, probably front wheels.. What do you suggest? Thank you ….. John Fedor

  4. John Cummings III February 11, 2014

    Awesome! Found a LeRun skate bike on my walk to work this morning. Going to attack it this weekend for the rebuild. Nice to see I am not the only old guy guy wanting to ride one of these!

    When I sold bikes back in the 80’s I tried getting the hang of the unicycle but it was a no go!

    • RichHelms February 11, 2014

      John – What a find. Love to see some pictures of your progress. As you can see from my posts finding some of the old components is a challenge.

      Post comments to tell your progress as you go.

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  6. Ross Derry July 9, 2013

    you better stick with the “training wheels” a little longer! before hitting the road on “Unicycle”

    never seen a “skatebike” before??

    • RichHelms July 9, 2013

      Thanks Ross. I hope to have the skatebike on the road in another week or two. The unicycle is another story. It looks hard to ride. It’s harder 🙂

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