The Aero-Fast bicycle possesses an interesting past. The brothers Smith,
Clayton and Willard opened a retail bicycle shop in Miami, Florida in 1944. Both
were mechanically inclined and they soon outgrew their first store. Through
additional hard work they entered the world of wholesale with the purchase of a
carload of Roadmaster bikes with funds coming from the sale of Clayton's home.
After moving to Jacksonville, Florida in 1948, they became the southeastern
distributors for Arnold Schwinn and Co. of Chicago, IL. In 1956 they moved into
the original building on the same block where Aero-Fast bicycles are made today.
Concurrently, Brooks Stevens, one of America's premier industrial
designers, with such notable works as the Bullet-nose Train, Frazier and
Studabaker automobiles, and the Oscar Meyer "Weinermobile" to his
credit, designed a bicycle for the Cleveland Welding Company. This bicycle was
marketed in 1948 under the Hawthorne brand name and in 1950 as the Western Flyer
In 1976 Clayton, Sr. and his son, Clayton II began manufacturing the Emory
bicycle in Jacksonville, FL mostly for industrial and government applications.
The tooling for the cantilever frames came from the Rollfast design which was
manufactured by H.P. Snyder in Little Falls, NY. Tallman Quarterman, Clayton,
Sr.'s nephew, worked for Cowan Boze (a division of Rollfast) in Atlanta, GA and
apprised Clayton of the tooling's availability.
The cruiser concept started in California using old Schwinn frames, but the
first manufacturer of cruisers in the United States was Emory. In 1990 we were
approached by Western Auto to become the successor to the Columbia Bicycle
Company as the manufacturer of the Western Flyer "Circa 1950's" line
of bicycles. The newest Western Flyer was inspired by Mr. Steven's original
design, a version of which we market today as the "new" Aero-Fast,
sporting new colors and (nearly a half a century later) a logo designed by Mr.
Stevens himself. Sadly this was to be the last effort in Mr. Steven's long and
illustrious career as he passed away in 1995 after a short illness. His era is
kept alive, however, in the Aero-Fast which like his famous Excalibre
automobiles are "contemporary classics".
The Smiths continue today into the third generation with the addition of
Clayton Emory Smith, IV and Seabrook Emory Smith. The family pledges to continue
to make the finest products of their type available and deeply appreciate your