B. Carre

Yes, I know I swore off French bikes forever. I know the objective is to thin the herd. I know I’m susceptible to the guiles of a  French beauty, especially one that’s “been around the block” more than a few times.

I also know I’m guilty of impulse purchases.

I know all of these things all too well. What I don’t know is much about this frame, and until this object of my horse trading arrives in the USA, it’s not likely I’ll know a whole lot more for a while.

Here are the facts, as I know them. This is a Bernard Carre frame. Every Carre frame I’ve seen – at least those I know for certain were built by Carre – are embossed with “B CARRE” on the seat stay caps. The frame is nominally my size at 58cm square.

I’ve no idea what tubing was used. Many French bikes of the 1970’s use a 26.4 seat pin; this one purportedly uses a 26.2.  The dropouts are spaced at 122. The frame is showing up with a TA bottom bracket. I’ll measure the spindle after it arrives to see if it matches any of my French cranks.

I’m a fan of Stronglight headsets, one of which accompanies this frame.

The dropouts are Campagnolo, as are the cable retainers along the top tube. The bottle holder appears to be a TA, or similar. The cantilever brakes are Mafac Criterium models. I’ve never used them before, but others assure me they are much easier to adjust and fine tune than earlier model cantis.

Cantilever brakes mean a couple things. For one, I’m locked in on the wheel size the frame was designed for. So if that size turns out to be a 27 inch wheel, there’s not a whole lot I can do about that. (Whereas, with center pulls or side pulls, one can often fit 700c or even 650b with a little luck.) The other thing is that cantilevers raise the question of whether or not this really is a randonneur. Cantilevers are a favored brake for cyclo-cross bikes, so the possibility is that this bike was designed for that purpose. I am leaning toward cycle-touring at the moment, but not a full bore touring model.

I’m left with a slight dilemma here: I’m in the queue for a Jeff Lyon frame. I’d planned to have that frame painted in a pale lavender or lilac color. Yet here I find myself with a frame in that color range already. Is that a problem, I wonder? (As I type these thoughts, it occurs to me that I have a pair of NOS toe straps that are the same color as this frame, just waiting for a new home. Hmmmm.)

Exploring a New Rail Trail

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Less than three months ago, the Rock Island Spur Trail officially opened. Yesterday being the most incredible February weather I can ever recall, my day was devoted to exploring a segment of this Rails-to-Trails initiative that connects the southern most section of the Kansas City area to the Katy Trail.

Still in its infancy, the Rock Island Spur Trail (like the Katy) offers snapshot views of scenes not always obvious or accessible by car. Combined with the Katy, the two trails will eventually nearly double the current mileage to form a 450 mile loop from one side of Missouri to the other. I love to explore and discover new places, especially small towns, “discardia,” and architectural elements. In this respect, the new trail does not disappoint.

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On this day I’m riding my 1971 Raleigh International. The 700 x 38 Compass tires provide a comfortable ride on a trail surface of packed gravel and clay. From time to time, the path becomes washboard, and I welcome the wide, supple tires that are not fully inflated.

This also offers me a chance to test out the revised contact points on the International. The bars and stem have been replaced, and only just this morning I’ve pulled the Brooks Cambium C17 from a bike that doesn’t see many miles and installed it onto this bike. I enjoy the feel of the Cambium on my Boulder Brevet, and because I’ve tried to closely mimic the cockpit and contact point dimensions it made sense to me to use the same model saddle also.

Emerging from a bank of trees, the trail crosses a paved road a few miles along the route out of Pleasant Hill, Missouri. There is an unimproved trail head at this location that abuts a property I imagine to be a “personal” salvage yard. In other words, it doesn’t appear to be a commercial operation; a pungent, thick smoky fire was burning – tires perhaps? – and the land was very overgrown and littered with wrecked and inoperable cars and trucks and other “discardia.” Trees had taken root and sprouted from the midst of literally everything. This 60’s era sedan has an orange New York license plate attached to the front.

I find “discardia” interesting. Such things, whether they be architectural, vehicular, or simply everyday detritus, are signs of human touch – of human impact. There’s history to be found in these artifacts of our existence … but it’s fleeting, because they are quickly disintegrating. As they return to their constituent elements, whatever sights they’ve born witness to are also disappearing.

Small towns throughout the Midwest are often an intriguing mishmash of architectural styles, with a few extant examples of Federalist style and Antebellum homes to be found if one searches, along with a smattering of Victorian “Painted Ladies,” Art Nouveau, and – more often than not – cautiously woven together Art Deco elements. Of course, bungalows and later box style structures still are the predominant structures, but they bore me and I choose to ignore them unless there is something unique to pique my curiosity about them.

Locating the trail head in Pleasant Hill, Missouri was challenging. No permanent signs have been installed yet. The online map was only generally helpful and provided little context once I arrived in town. In fact, I wound up misinterpreting the map and driving miles out of town in search of a turn off, only to have to circle back again. Siri couldn’t find any reference to a “Rock Island Spur trailhead” and tried to direct me to another town about a hundred miles away on the Katy.

Once back in town I turned toward the older commercial district, planning to stop at the police station for directions. Instead, I came upon  a group of four young adults on bikes. Figuring them to be likely trail riders, I asked if they knew where the trail head was located. With a shake of his head and a grin, one guy laughingly acknowledged that things weren’t marked very well. He told me to park in the commercial district (no parking at the trail head???) and pedal down the road I was already on another quarter mile.

Easy enough. Following his directions, I noticed a couple of small temporary directional signs – literally 8 x 10 cards with small lettering stapled to wooden stakes – encouraging riders to “go this way.”

Which I did.

And which, ultimately, led me to a farm, down a farm path, and onto the trail proper. Whew!

Fortunately, I filled my water bottle before heading out. At least along the first twenty-five miles there are no towns, no places to refill water – and no restrooms. (Fortunately, there are plenty of trees though.) The trailheads I encountered are also still very primitive. Although there is parking (except at Pleasant Hill), there is little else. This differs from many trail heads along the Katy, and I’m sure this will change as the trail is further developed. And to be fair, such inconveniences didn’t seem to mar the enthusiasm of trail users yesterday – I encountered an abundance of cyclists and hikers. (Horses are also welcome on the trail, but leave your ATVs and dirt bikes at home.)

Perhaps I read the mile markers (and the website, and the GPS) wrong, but I should have encountered a town at one point – in fact, I’d planned to make that my turnaround point. But I arrived at the designated mile marker and found…more trees, and a field. Hmm. I decided to keep going another mile. And another. In fact four more. I crossed a couple of roads but I never found that little town, and the afternoon growing late, and me having yet to make any sketches, I turned back toward Pleasant Hill. Having scoped out a few interesting places on the short journey out, my plan was to stop to make photographs and sketches as I leisurely pedaled back toward the car.


Eventually, the Rock Island Trail will be 272 miles in length, from Lee’s Summit in the west to Labadie on the east side of the state. There are plans to extend the trail from Lee’s Summit further into Kansas City, creating even more urban access points. As of this writing, a nearly fifty mile segment is open from Pleasant Hill and connecting to the Katy Trail at Windsor.

Adjusting the Fit

Yes, I’m fiddling around with things again. Although I really love the look of the gold anodized bars, stem, and levers that have graced my 1971 Raleigh International, I’ve run into a problem recently: The stem no longer wants to snug down. Now I don’t know about anyone else, but having the bars come loose as I’m barreling down a steep hill is not a thrill I want to experience. In fact, having them come loose as I pedaled from a dead stop through an intersection at about 2 MPH was freaky enough. (For those interested in a first hand account, let me just say that I felt like I’d hit an oily or soapy patch on the road…no control whatsoever.)

I gritted my teeth and pulled over. This was the third time in a couple of days and I had finally come to the realization that if I wanted to ensure a future where I could grit my teeth at other things, I’d better reconsider my cockpit. I already knew that my optimal setup, like my Boulder, involved randonneur handlebars and more rise. I prefer the feel of rando bars while I ride. And as it happens, I had an unused set of bars and a long rise stem hanging about.

The first bike tool I reached for was my camera. I needed to make some precise comparisons between the control (my Boulder Brevet) and the bike I wanted to adjust. After a lot of adjustment and experimentation, the Boulder fits me better than any other bike, so it operates as my baseline.

In this photograph, notice that I’ve placed guidelines to indicate the top of the bars and saddle position, as well as the location of the bottom bracket. These the the relevant points of contact for me. The bottom bracket, regardless of location on the frame, isn’t a variable. The pedals meet my feet, and that simply doesn’t change so I make two photographs of the bikes in exactly the same position, then superimpose the images with the bottom brackets oriented to the same location. Because everything else is a variable, I can compare the bike I want to adjust to the variables on the bike I want to adjust.

Notice how in this superimposed image the two bottom brackets are aligned, but that the other points of contact – i.e., the saddle and bars – are clearly located in different places relative to the bottom bracket. Because I already know that the Boulder is an optimal fit, I can begin my analysis with this information.

A couple of notable observations can be made here. First, the saddle is lower on the International. Raising it is easy, of course. But doing so would play havoc with the reach and drop to the bars. But that’s ok because the second thing of note is that the bars need to be raised in order to better match the fit of the Boulder. Seems simple, but there’s not enough rise on the gold stem…and heck, it’s not staying secure anyway.

Assuming I had adequate rise with the original stem (which I don’t), simply raising the height doesn’t come anywhere close to matching the rise or grip points of contact on the Boulder. This is where the randonneur handlebars come into the picture: because the curves rise and the bars themselves have a more forward position, my points of contact are higher, with a more stretched out and longer reach. I happen to like longer reach, and raising the original bars would effectively shorten the reach.

All of which takes me back to the photo at the top of this post. Replacing the lovely, but unworkable gold bars and stem with a tall Nitto and rando bars combination left me with a ride that rivals my Boulder. The superimposed photos are precise enough to have helped me adjust the new setup with almost no additional adjustments after the initial installation. Yesterday, I pedaled up and down the street feeling like I was riding a completely different bike. Please remember that I already liked the ride of this International, so discovering that the comfort and bike position was now almost the duplicate of my Boulder, and then realizing that this adjustment left me with a significantly more efficient pedal stroke… well, let’s just say that I’m more than pleased.

An afternoon shakedown ride today confirmed my initial assessment, by the way. A quick fifteen mile route of hills, mixed terrain, and flats; stopping and starting, curves, etc. takes away some of the chagrin I feel at having to put the gold stuff up on the wall.

Think I’ll celebrate this win over an excellent glass of wine. Enjoy your Valentine’s Day.

 

To Hell With The Groundhog.

Waiting in the wings was Baby, my 1966 Schwinn Paramount, holding out for an afternoon ride in the country.

And what an afternoon it turned out to be! Not a puff of breeze, completely still except for the trill of birdsong and quiet voices of couples and families out for a walk on an incredibly pleasant day.

Heading north, the sun disappears behind a thick cloud cover. It’s cool enough that I’m barely breaking into a sweat, but pedaling at a nice steady pace my legs quickly warm. All around me the world seems to be bathed in ochre and sienna and umber. A closer look reveals fresh sprouts of green peeking through the underbrush and dead leaves that blanket the ground.

Trees, not yet laden in foliage allow a view of the lake and land and hills beyond.

It’s weird. I’m riding through rural Missouri, about as far from the ocean as one could be, smack dab in the middle of this land mass we call America. But high above the water, dipping and swooping, are gulls. At the end of one small body of water, in the shallows, a school of some kind of small fish is breaking the surface, the water boiling, making quiet popping sounds as they do.

To hell with the groundhog. Spring is on the way.

Glow

Sub-atomic, nuclear glow; snowy whiteness, bleached and silvery – like the hoar frost that only days ago crusted the windshield of my car; pallid, colorless, ashen, and pasty…washed out and waxen, entirely bereft of warmth or color, pale and anemic looking  legs that haven’t been kissed by the sun since last November, when old Sol simply wasn’t even at his best even then, betraying my Gaelic-Nordic ancestry.

Yesterday was the very first “shorts day” of 2017.

Biding my time

It’s 9:00 am, Sunday morning. I’ve been up since a little after four, grading art history essays; the bank of windows that line my wall next to me have gradually changed from a densely black night through the various colors and values of a rosy dawn. And now the day beyond the glass looks marvelous. The sky is blue with only a few wisps of cloud. Nary a branch moves; there is not a hint of wind. A quick check of the internet informs me that the outside temps are hovering – for the moment – just below freezing.

I’ve set aside my rubrics and finished reading art history essays, and I could easily layer up and hit the road, but I linger. There’s no question I will get in a few hours of saddle time today. The question is when.

Do you ever do this? Bide your time until the “optimal” conditions present themselves? Well, I certainly have done…and from time to time it bites me in the ass to do so. Not so many weeks back the January weather promised a late afternoon window of opportunity. The morning had been freezing drizzle and the evening looked equally forbidding. But that afternoon of promise was forecast to be a small slice of heaven.

So I waited, and bide my time. The morning drizzle never appeared. In fact, the temps weren’t at all as miserable as the published forecast. Still, I knew that the afternoon would be terrific, so my bike continued to lean against the wall. The morning passed by, and as mid-day turned to afternoon, and the sky began to turn gray, so too did my mood. Rechecking the online forecast, I was shocked to see that the world had turned upside down. Instead of an incredible afternoon, conditions were only going to get worse. The morning freezing drizzle arrived late and by the time I realized what I’d missed the road was glazing over with ice.

I see that this afternoon promises to be in the upper forties. I could bide my time and wait for things to improve, but I can already hear a bird chirping outside my window. Squirrels are racing up and down one of the huge cottonwoods. And I think I’ll take what I’ve got right now.

Small British Builders

(Continued from yesterday) If you’re a regular reader of The Early Morning Cyclist, my fondness for vintage lightweight road and touring machines is no secret. The history of these bicycles is as much of interest to me as the machines themselves, and equal to the fascination I have with the blending of functionality and aesthetics. My own collection has ebbed and flowed, occasionally threatening to overrun my studio. And I’m always very interested to see what other enthusiasts have collected. There’s a fellow a few miles from me who collects bikes and focuses on vintage track bikes. He’s not a rider at all, yet his basement is filled to overflow with very desirable “rode and put up wet” road bikes; the main floor of his house has bikes leaning against every single wall. It is, in fact, a bit difficult to navigate through the place. (As I recall, he’s unmarried!) He has collected back stories on many of those bikes, as much as he has the physical bicycle itself.

I’m generally interested in knowing more about the bikes in my keeping. What was their place in the bicycle world? Where did they come from? Who rode the machine before it came into my possession? What is special, unusual, unique? These two-wheeled machines were built for use and that is what interests me most about them. Very occasionally I come across a time capsule – a bike that was ridden a couple of times and then put away for decades, forgotten. Aside from scratches acquired from thirty or more years of other objects leaning up against them and hardened lube, these are often in “like new” condition. It’s easy to get excited about that type of find, but also – ultimately – quite sad. They have never really been a part of someone’s life, never been a mode of conveyance for whatever reason, to whatever place. Not so oddly, they have made me think of The Island of Misfit Toys, from the animated Christmas television special Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer. The bikes that interest me most are those that have been used, and that show some earned scuffs and scratches as part of their history of use.

My long distance conversation with Shaun continued, and began to evolve.

Hello Mark,

First of all I am delighted that Dick Poole has been able to help you and I would say that your ownership of the Hobbs has a great deal of meaning and sentiment to him.

I thought you might like to see my latest effort of returning an old frame back to its proper use (above and at top of post.)

It is an F H Scott of Ealing, West London and dates from the late 1950’s or early 60’s.  They were one of many small independant frame builders in the London area and had gone out of business by the mid 1960’s.  I can’t recall ever seeing another.  The frame had been refurbished at some point by Hetchins as it has their transfer on the seat tube and I would assume the original F H Scott transfers could not be obtained at that time.

The frame came from a friend who like me is keen on these sort of bikes and I added the ivory, black and deeper purple panels.  Lloyds Decals supplied the appropriate transfers.  The equipment fitted is a varied mix which sits reasonably well with the period of the frame – Campagnolo gears and shifters, GB Bars and headstem.  Fitting a suitable seat post wasn’t entirely straightforward – mm’s are everything and the only one that would fit was a 25.8mm size.  Even then it was slightly loose – my first trip felt like I was riding one of those office swivel chairs and I’ve had to insert a sliver of brass to prevent any movement. The frame size is 22 inches though some others I have are 23.

My small collection of bikes are all steel framed, the sort of beauties I would have loved to have owned as a schoolboy but could never have afforded.  A new bike in the 1960’s was never cheap.  Early retirement means I am so very lucky in being able to ride out most days but looking at the thick frost outside now I may leave that until at least noon.

If you are not a member have you ever considered joining the V-CC,  Veteran – Cycle Club?  Membership has the benefit of receiving a superb magazine and journal which are published quarterly.

Best wishes

Shaun

I find the many small mark builders of 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s Great Britain to be very interesting, and Shaun’s collection emphasizes those very bikes. To my eye, his F H Scott is quite a sharp looking bike that very much appeals to my own aesthetic tastes. British bikes of this period 60’s have a look and feel all their own. The exuberance of tube color seems to blend in so nicely with the classic graphics. In particular, there’s something quite “right” about the crest-like designs that are often present in head badge and seat tube artwork. The head tube lug work on the F H Scott frame is intricate and elegant. As a designer myself I appreciate the idea of taking something that is purely functional and endowing it with elegance. I praised the lilac color of the tubes, in particular – it catches my attention at the moment because it’s similar to the color I’m leaning toward for a new build that’s currently underway.

Hello Mark,

Thanks for your kind comments regarding the F H Scott.  The frame was already finished in the lilac / purple colour when I bought it but being quite artistic myself felt it needed a little more enhancement hence the additional panels.  Actually I came close to selling this frame and had put it on Ebay, thankfully no one was interested and I’m very glad I kept it.

I entirely agree regards the style and finish of these bikes; the badges and lug work can be like works of art.  Certainly I’m no lover of logos which applied to modern bikes look quite tacky and cheap, little or no style in my book.  One of the most imaginative badges for me has to be the Mal Rees ‘Ahead of Time’ which is just superb and so original.   I’ll dig out some pictures of my various bikes and email you them over the next few days.  In the meantime here are some of my Major Brothers of Thornton Heath (above) – please excuse the poor composition of them, also the Mal Rees badge (above) which is slightly damaged in the picture and has since been replaced with a new one.

The yellow and green bands on the Major are the club colours for the former Ravensbury CC which was located near Mitcham in south London.  This is the bike that I traced its former owner who bought it new in 1956.  He passed this classic bike onto a cycle charity shop where someone recognising the potential acquired it for probably very little, totally stripped every part – shades of your Hobbs, and sold the bare frame and forks (not even the headset) to me for quite a lot but I was so pleased to get it.  What is particularly nice is that I have a picture of him racing it when he was a young man and I in turn have raced the bike on time trial events.

Best wishes

Shaun

My initial reaction: Wow! Those graphics are amazing!

Hi Mark,

A couple of pics – my Jack Sibbit bike (above.)  He was a famous track cyclist up in Manchester and built some very nice frames in his day.  Very attractive looking transfers on the forks, it is a pretty looking bike

If you like I can send you the pdf download of the Middlesex club journal – now in colour and we can add you to our regular mailing list.

Best wishes

Shaun

That Jack Sibbit is another very interesting one. I was really enjoying the opportunity to see Shaun’s bikes and appreciated his willingness to share. These small British frameworks might seldom – or never – be seen on my side of the Atlantic. It’s fascinating to me how various countries or regions tended to develop their own history and philosophy of bicycle design. Many enthusiasts Stateside have a decidedly Italian taste, so quite a few of those venerable bikes are well represented in collections both small and large. With the renewed interest in 650b, low trail, and randonneuring, there is also a American revival of interest in French constructeur bikes. I find it intriguing how British bikes followed a very different path of development in which fixed wheel and IGH transmissions were favored for a time over derailleurs. Where French cycle-touring and constructeur designs leaned toward front loads, British designs balanced things nicely with rear load. Even today, there’s a fundamental difference between what one might consider to be a randonneur vs. a sportif design.  I like how nicely many of the frames from the smaller British builders fit my own personal concept of lightweight sportif or spirited rider.

Our correspondence continued in this vein:

Hi Mark,

Thanks for your email.  Britain has long been a place where the varying types of cycling thrived.  Whilst there has been a long tradition of touring and using bikes for a means of exploring far off places there has also been a  strong competitive and club orientated element that in particular enjoyed a golden age after the last war.  Sadly traditional clubs such as ours are waning though the enthusiasm for cycling remains strong.  Traditionally sons would follow fathers into a cycle club but that is now largely, a thing of the past.

If you are unaware of this website it may be of interest to you  www.classiclightweights.co.uk/   It is a goldmine of information and pictures both of the bikes and about the people who built them.

Here are some pictures of my H E Green of Fulham (above.)  H E ‘Doc’ Green also had a shop in Morden, South London from where I also have an example.  One of my other cycle clubs is the Morden CRC hence my interest in this marque.

Like your Hobbs this 1957 frame had a club name ‘Silchester CC’ painted on the top tube though sadly no other name.  I assumed, wrongly as it turned out, that this was the Silchester not far from where I live.  The club no longer exists but I was keen to find out what its club colours had been as I wanted to paint them on the seat tube – the original paint was badly worn there.  After much asking around I found this out and also that the club had originated in London circa 1930’s – from Silchester Road, North Kensington.

I noted with a smile your comments on that US forum about the weather where you are.  It isn’t any better here – freezing fog and frost.  I managed all of two miles today before accepting it really wasn’t worth the risk!

Best wishes

Shaun

It had indeed been cold. Apart from a couple of days of unseasonably warm December weather, I’ve been stranded indoors. Today, in fact, school is canceled due to heavy snow and below zero temperatures. Our correspondence had become a very welcome diversion from the otherwise tedious conditions.

I found myself enjoying the unusual combination of colors on the H E Green frame. It looked to me like Shaun was using slightly later period components on some of his bikes. I know some feel very strongly about everything being all “matchy-matchy” and from the same time period as the frame, but the way I have always looked at things is that most cyclists would have updated components as better/affordable stuff came along, without any concern about “originality.” It’s certainly what I and the cyclists I knew did in the 70’s and early 80’s. I don’t agonize too much about such things today either – for instance, my ’66 Paramount sports late 70’s era Japanese wheels and an early 80’s crank set.

I enjoyed a bit of immersion in the Middlesex cycling club that evening, diving into the excellent journal Shaun sent my way.

His mention of Silchester made me curious. I understand the Middlesex club is based out of the London area, and my own family hails from Watford, which is perhaps twenty miles north-ish of London. I was curious if the club members are centrally located or come from all over the city. When I was in my teens, the “club” I rode with was a loose group of the like-minded, and we all lived within five minutes of each other. Fast forwarding to today there are a couple of local clubs with members from all across our metropolitan area. We’re a fairly automobile-centric culture, so it’s not a big deal for a cyclist to strap his or her bike onto the back of an SUV. I do find it a bit ironic that we may drive 45 minutes or an hour from one part of the city to another to join the “local” club for ride. I was curious if there’s a parallel in Shaun’s part of the world.

Hi Mark,

One way or the other I was quite lucky that the Silchester’s colours were orange and black and not say, cerise and pale blue!  The frame itself is an unusual bronze tint of dark green that almost looks brown in very bright light so the colours work well together.  I was able to get a paint match which was useful in touching in other small areas of paint loss.  On my other H E Green I’ve likewise painted the Morden’s colours on the seat tube.

As for period equipment, one reason why I don’t go on V-CC runs is because of the total adherence some members have to only using 100 per cent correct parts.  Rod Boot aka ‘Das Boot’ in the Middlesex belongs to them and gets a little irritated with the nit picking aimed at him – and his old bikes are absolutely show room finish quality.  They’d probably want to burn me at the stake as a heretic.  I try and keep things within reason but have a liking for drilled chainsets and large flange hub wheels, I also much prefer the look of alloy as opposed to steel.  A while back I briefly owned an Ephgrave that had the whole period set of parts including Lauterwasser bars but I didn’t enjoy the clunky, heavy ride;  tyres on it looked liked they had come off a tractor – again my own preference is for 700 x 23’s though the Fulham H E Green has 27’s.  But you’re right, these bikes were often upgraded in time as we all wanted better parts for them.

Watford; we pass through there sometimes on club rides usually with a cafe stop at Cassiobury Park. 

Historically our club drew its members from the part of Middlesex that lies to the west of London particularly the suburbs of Hayes and Southall.  Riders in say, Hendon probably joined clubs like the Edgware CC or the Willesden.  When the Silchester folded in the mid1960’s many of the surviving members joined the Willesden CC.  Nowadays our membership is spead out between Ealing, Hayes and South Buckinghamshire out to where I live in Berkshire.  Much like you and your friends do though, we’ll stick our bikes in the backs of our cars and meet up wherever, we couldn’t ride in any numbers otherwise.

Here’s another bike – something of an oddity.  It is a 1950’s or early 60’s S. Roland – Jones of Acton (above.)  This was a cycle shop albeit one that had an elaborate badge which they used on frames built and supplied from elsewhere.  I’ve no idea who originally built the frame which is quite standard for its day with Nervex lugs- possibly Wally Green who built for just about everyone perhaps and so far I’ve failed to find anything about the cycle shop itself, even through the local history society there in West London.  Many of the parts are original to the bike but it had a strange hub gearing system combined with derailleur gears, a more recent addition which I replaced with Campagnolo throughout.  The bars are GB, a particular favourite that I use on other bikes.

All the best

Shaun

(To be continued…?)