NBHAA Historical Articles


THE 1956 J.C. HIGGINS DELUXE!

By Leon Dixon

Copyright 1985, 1998, 2004, 2007, 2011, 2013 by NBHAA and Leon Dixon. All rights reserved.

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With the J.C. Higgins now a popular favorite of many collectors, we figure that some of you out there might enjoy the following...

AUTHOR'S NOTE REGARDING COPYRIGHTS:

Copyright 1985, 1998, 2004, 2007, 2011, 2013 Leon Dixon, all rights reserved

This article originally was written for now-defunct CYCLIST magazine and appeared in the July, 1985 issue of that magazine. This was the first major bicycle magazine (news stand publication) to ever feature a story on the J.C. Higgins Deluxe details and history. (NOTE: The very first magazine article to include the J.C. Higgins for collectors was also written by yours truly. This appeared in January, 1975 in BICYCLING! magazine (yes, the exclamation mark was correct for the magazine title back in those days). We wrote a second in 1978 and that article appeared in the first newsletter for classic bicycles, Classic Bicycle & Whizzer News ...haunt your libraries, folks! All photos in the Cyclist magazine Concours 'd Elegance series for articles written by your curator were taken by my good friend and noted photographer, Steve Essig (subsequent Brand-X articles followed using the name we established these were neither written by us, nor did they use our information). Although photo copyrights originally were listed in the magazine as Steve's they in fact are assigned to Leon Dixon as per agreement with Steve Essig. No part of this article or the original article may be reproduced or excerpted without written permission of the author.

AUTHOR'S NOTE REGARDING THE J.C.HIGGINS IN THE ACCOMPANYING PHOTOS.

These are the original photos used in the 1985 article. The photos had (obviously) been taken well prior to the time of the article. This particular J.C. Higgins belongs to the author and was perhaps the first Higgins ever fully restored (having been completed by about 1969). There are absolutely no reproduction parts on this bicycle and all chrome is original except for the handlebar stem. Likewise, decals are all original. Imperfections of the stripes and paint in the photos accompanying this article on this site may appear either grainy or slightly wiggled...however this is an optical illusion created in the scanning process. We can assure you that the actual bicycle has excellent finish...

NEW

NEW

SPECIFICATIONS:

MODEL: 1956 J.C. Higgins Deluxe

MANUFACTURER: Sears, Roebuck & Company, Chicago, Illinois.

ORIGINAL PRICE: $62.95 ($64.95 in the Western USA)

FRAME: hydrogen brazed, dip-tube streamlined

FINISH: black enamel with red trim, gold pinstripes, gold and white decals. All bright parts chrome plated.

WEIGHT: 71 Ibs.

DRIVETRAIN: one inch-pitch chain drives special Musselman-based J.C. Higgins brake hub.

PEDALS: J.C. Higgins Deluxe

RIMS: Murray flat face, chrome plated

TIRES: Allstate Deluxe whitewall balloon, 26 x 2 125

Leon Dixon is an authority on bicycles of the "Classic" era, 1920 to 1950... a classification which he coined, defined and copyrighted the definition (one example of which was published in November, 1979 Bicycle Dealer Showcase magazine ). He was the first to actively collect and restore these bicycles and first to write about them. His personal collection includes more than 1000 bicycles. Dixon is curator of National Bicycle History Archive of America, Box 862 Gig Harbor, WA 98335

QUESTIONS FOR HIGGINS HOTSHOTS OUT THERE...

1.) WHAT WAS THE FIRST J.C. HIGGINS WHICH USED CHROME FENDERS AND "JET INTAKE" TANK? WHEN WAS THIS MODEL MADE?

2.) WHAT COASTER BRAKE HUBS WERE USED ON THIS BICYCLE AND WHEN WERE THEY USED?

3.) WHAT WAS THE NUMBER OF THE STIMSONITE RED LENS IN THIS SPECIAL HIGGINS REAR REFLECTOR AND WHAT OTHER VEHICLES USED IT?

4.)WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THIS MODEL AND THE J.C.HIGGINS "100"?? AND WHICH HIGGINS SUPPOSED "reference book" SHOWS A COMPLETELY WRONG PAGE CLAIMING TO BE THE J.C. Higgins 100?

5.)WHERE CAN YOU FIND MORE J.C. HIGGINS ORIGINAL LITERATURE AND KNOWLEDGE THAN ANYWHERE ELSE ON EARTH??

Thank you for visiting the NBHAA Historical articles! This section will change as time goes on, but will continuously feature rare glimpses at bicycle history, memorabilia and facts you won't find anywhere else. We will eventually be posting the entire series of CYCLIST magazine articles that were written by your curator in the 1980s. We hope you enjoy the photos and information. And stay tuned !


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This page, all design and contents, all photos unless otherwise noted are Copyright 1984. 1998, 2004, 2007, 2011, 2013 by Leon Dixon/NBHAA, All rights reserved.
Date of last update to this page: 20 MARCH 2013

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