Tiny Project: 1960s Cushman Trailster

Had production managed to hang on for one further week, the Cushman Trailster would have been a scooter that remained in production for exactly 5-years to the day. This little guy has ventured a long way from home and is now located in Duncraig, WA, Australia. Barn Finder Ricochet referred the Cushman to us, so thank you so much for that Ricochet. You will find the Trailster listed for sale here on eBay, with bidding now sitting at A$361 (approx US$254) in a No Reserve auction.

This particular scooter is from the second series of the Trailster, which was built from 1962 until 1965. The owner is unsure in which year it was built, but under that rather ugly green paint lies the original yellow that was the distinctive color for the Trailster. The frame itself looks like it is in pretty decent condition, although the distinctive slotted lower rear panels are missing from both sides of the bike. The flywheel cover is present, but it has some rust issues and will need to be repaired or replaced. The good thing about the Cushman is that even though they are an unusual little beast, spares can be obtained via members of the Cushman Owner’s Club of America.

If brute horsepower is your thing, then a Cushman is not for you. However, the Trailster could hold its own when the going got tough. Initially available with a 4.7hp engine, this Trailster may have had a bit of a performance upgrade, as I have a feeling that this engine might be the 8hp version. I may be wrong on that, but the fact that this engine appears to have an aluminum head leads me to that conclusion. Maybe we have a Cushman expert out there who can clarify that for me. If I’m wrong about the engine, I’ll gladly admit it. The engine turns, but the scooter doesn’t currently run. Still, there is plenty of support available to source parts, and if the engine is really tired and worn, it is possible to have it bored, which can also unleash an additional small amount of power.

This is a pretty cool old scooter, and while they may be relatively rare these days in the US, they would have to be extremely rare Down Under. I found a nice one that sold at auction recently for just over $2,000, while the Miami Auto Museum has an absolutely pristine example that could be yours for $12,000! For someone who really wants to take on a project, and health or space means that any major restoration is out of the question, maybe the little Cushman Trailster would be the perfect answer.

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Comments

  1. Rube Goldberg

    Really cool, not to take anything away from Adam, but I expected Scotty G’s name. I’m no Cushman expert, and this pretty crude for dirt bikes, but you had to start somewhere. The Model T of dirt bikes. I read, this is the “Husky” motor, and can’t find much info on it, I think it was Cushmans own. Later Cushmans used OMC motors. It’s amazing what this could look like again.
    http://suprememotos.com/cushman/133957-59-cushman-trailster.html

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    • geomechs geomechs Member

      I was expecting to see Scotty’s name too. Every time I see a Cushman scooter I listen for the whistle and look for a bunch of Shriners. Yeah where I come from they couldn’t afford ‘Coy’s big Harley, up on the high diving board.’

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      • Mike

        Nice Ray Stevens plug there. I thought that I was the only one who remembered all of his songs!

        1
      • geomechs geomechs Member

        That’s one of my favorite songs. I’m a hopeless Ray Stevens fan…

        1
  2. On and On On and On Member

    When I was in grade school in Chicago 58-65, I remember the ‘big’ kids (15y/olds?) running up and down the alleys on Cushmans. I remember they always seemed to start and run well, even when being beat to hell. And they did beat them badly. We were jealous cause they’d never let us ride them.

    3
    • mikestuff

      I was about the same age in 1960-62 and there was a couple in my local church who took “god’s” word to multiply and replenish the church, and by then, there was 9 kids, including 2 sets of twin boys and just one girl. 2 of the boys were in my classes at school and the family seemed to have money, and the kids all slept in 2 bedrooms.
      They had a Cushman and another type of scooter and seemed to wreck them a lot. They wrecked the Cushman at least twice and the boys both were riding on it and one broke his right leg and one broke his left. They didn’t ride it again and I don’t remember if they kept both scooters. The family moved away a couple of years later and I heard my mother say something to the effect that the whole church was glad to see them gone. Have no clue what happened to them after that.

  3. Ray Romero

    I had a 1959 Cushman Silver Eagle in about 1965/66. My dad got it in pieces in a box for $25 and restored it for me. It had dual exhaust, a big chrome head light, and dad painted it black. Mom put a big spark plug emblem under the head light. It was fine! Ran about 70 m.p.h. I sure wish I had it now, at almost 68 years old! Oh for the Good Ole Days!

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  4. stillrunners

    wow…..cool it survived…..

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