Re: [CR] On what?

(Example: Component Manufacturers:Avocet)

Subject: Re: [CR] On what?
Date: Fri, 29 Jun 2007 07:24:58 -0400
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Comment to Chris Plunkett's mail

From: Geoff Margetts


It wasn’t all matching equipment in the past - there was a lot more variation in bike equipment than people realize. Don’t forget that, at least in the 1960s, it was not the done thing for “serious† riders to buy a complete bike off the peg. All the people I knew had a f rame made, then used equipment that they liked or what they already had.

The bikes were continually evolving as guys bolted on any piece of the lates t equipment that they could afford in a quest for an advantage, or because i t was the latest craze.

In the South-London area around 1964-67 it was “the fashion† to use Mafac brakes with “Universal” levers, these being felt to be more comfortable than the Mafac levers.

I knew someone who used Mafac brakes but with GB brake levers that had a qui ck-release button. He’d had a worrying experience when, after a fron t wheel puncture and a tub (sew-up) change, he forgot to reconnect the Mafac straddle wire and went shooting off down a hill to discover his front brake wasn’t working. He swore it would never happen again.

A lot of people still used a Campag Gran Sport rear mech. with a Record fron t changer for some time after the Record rear mech. was available, the Gran Sport front changer being seen as something to be got rid of first.

I always used Lyotard platform pedals on my fixed wheeled winter bike, prima rily because, when starting to move, I was totally incapable of picking up a “normal” pedal on the first revolution, or the second, or t he third.

Today these bikes might just look like collection of parts, which is what th ey were, but that’s how we rode. When restoring a bike today, it doe sn’t have to be perfectly matching parts, because the club cyclists of the day didn’t use perfectly matching parts.

However, whatever area of collecting you’re in to, it’s grea t that there are so many facets to our hobby. The main thing is that the bik es that we love are still around and being appreciated.


Geoff Margetts







Date: Thu, 28 Jun 2007 16:13:00 -0400 (EDT)

From: Chris Plunkett <>


Subject: re; Re: [CR] On what?

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From; Chris Plunkett


Long time reader but never submitted. Tom's perspective moved me to get off

the sideline.

I am all about period correctness and historical accuracy. Like many here,

I sweat over the smallest details when restoring vintage bikes  to thei r or

iginal glory. But I was reminded today in Tom's post, cycling is also about

the differences and having fun.

Riding in 60's and 70's as a younger man there were always vast divisions o

f riders. The rider who tricked out a bike (supped-up was the term of the d

ay) with the the latest and greatest innovations, bolt on a new one and dis

card the stock one, color coordination a must. Above all it was imperative

that your bike didn't appear even close to stock. Custom was for the very c

ool, hip and rugged cyclists and stock was for a Mommas boy.

Then there was the rider that so cherished the correctness of his bike, he

swore to preserve and protect. He polished it nightly and thought, if it wa

s good enough that the factory put it on, who the heck was he to take it of

f, and he would honor correctness by leaving his bike alone.

Then the racer who was tearing his bike apart daily, looking to lighten the

load, get just a little more speed. Thinner and thinner wheels and tires.

Change out the fork, off with all non essentials including bar tape, rear b

rake, hell even the decals.


Today nothing has really changed; I still see vast divisions of riders on t

heir perfect vintage correctness and racing on their premium composite mate

rials. But also I see bikes like a 30 year old chrome Paramount frame set u

p as fixie with fenders, chopped bars, purple cables, purple saddle & tires

. I saw it yesterday, the rider zig zagging through the herd of cars during

rush hour, a guy in his twenties. Besides contact with my aging bike circl

e, I talk with the hipsters that blast down the city streets of Chicago on

their custom steel steeds and the message is the same; We pay homage to the

cycling legends & giants of yesterday by riding the frames they designed,

raced and built. But with correctness aside we don't want our bikes to look

or ride like anyone else’s. We want our vintage bike s to be one of

a kind, innovative head turners, built with the highest quality parts on e

arth. No, not much has changed.