Thursday, January 30, 2014

A Search and a Triumph

image via oldbike.eu
It feels silly to be so excited about this. She is an abstraction for now, as I have yet to see her. And when we do meet, she will be enormous and heavy. There will be huge bother retrieving her from the neighbouring county. But I’ve been trying to get my hands on a vintage lady's roadster since moving here, and finally one appeared. A virtual handshake and now she sits there, waiting for me. A 1950s Triumph step-through. Black. Rod brakes, chaincase, even a dynohub.

My delight over this find is disproportional to its collector's value. This bicycle isn’t rare or historically remarkable. It is not in immaculate condition. I do not expect it to ride better than my modern bike. I most certainly do not need it. And yet I do. How strange and unnatural it’s been, without a bunch of old crusty bikes around.

Is it the vintage-ness itself that I miss? Is it the elegant proportions, the matte black paint, the faded golden lettering and the smell of old steel? And is it also the caked dirt, the hard to budge bolts, the parched leather, the stiff springs? Is it, finally, the creaking?

Liking is such an important feeling, because it trumps everything. And with liking comes the impulse to explain. “I like it because…” – and we go on to list the thing’s merits, to present it as a rational decision. Vintage bikes are beautiful. Vintage bikes have a fine ride quality. Vintage bikes have historical value and so we can learn from them.

Liking things does have its root causes. They just aren't always what we think. And their logic may not be obvious or linear. It can come to us in waves - of imagery, or sound, or emotion. Why force it into an explanation, if in so doing we might lose its true substance?

A Triumph. I have not owned, or even ridden one of those before. Founded in Coventry, England in 1884, Triumph later split into separate motorcycle and bicycle manufacturers. The Triumph Cycle company produced a range of tourist and sport roadster models. It was bombed to destruction during World War II, then, after a brief recovery, purchased by BSA in 1951, which was in turn purchased by Raleigh in 1956. It was from this latter period that most of the imported Triumph 3-speeds in the USA came from, and so today they are largely remembered as a Raleigh sub-brand. In view of this history, the Triumph name is charmingly ironic.

The pre-acquisition Triumphs are of course more sought after than the later models. Until I see my bike in person I won't know its age for sure, but I suspect it to be post-Raleigh. Which is all right. A lovely, run of the mill bicycle. What it is about these old roadsters that makes me unable to leave them be, I cannot tell you. But I can already hear the swoosh of the worn tires and the noise of the hub, and it fills me with anticipation.

Is it the tick-tick-tick, like an amplified pulse of a living thing?

55 comments:

  1. Excited for you! I have a mid-50s Superbe (super bee!) found in Minnesota; almost black but green in strong light, now overhauled mechanically with working dynamo but oh so tatty. You express so well the mystery of fascination with them. What was her former life like and can there be anything to match her loveliness?
    Thank you for sharing! Jim Duncan

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  2. "My delight over this find is disproportional."

    Your delight over this find is muted and a monument to self-restraint. I should have thought you would be bouncing all over the Internet shouting "I found it! I found it! And it's going to be mine!!!"

    As a rider of several 1940's Triumph motorcycles — all I could afford in the late 1960's (I wonder what they'd be worth now?) — I applaud your choice. As someone for whom a (used) mid-1950's 3-speed BSA was my first good quality bicycle, I look upon your acquisition with nostalgia, admiration, and just a touch of envy. Keep us informed as this latest adventure unfolds.
    ~ David

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  3. the tick tick tick is the mantra, your piece captures something of the essence of a vintage bike - to me it feels like an evolved creature (unlike lifeless contemporary corporate crap) - in stop start traffic a Raleigh all steel is perfection and everything since compromised

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  4. Your celebration of vintage bikes is what first brought me to your blog, I'm thrilled you're adding one to your stable and that it is such a cool bike as well!

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    1. What Tony said. :O)

      I hope you can find out the history of this 'ol gal' and share it with us.

      Going back to read again your post I enjoyed it so much.

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  5. What does old steel smell like V? :P

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    1. I don't know, rust and dust? (by forcing it into an explanation, we risk losing its true substance…)

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  6. Holy mackerel! My feelings and thinking about vintage bikes to a tee. I've got six vintage British frames sitting in a closet that I know will never get built. I can't get rid of them because I actually enjoy just looking at them and thinking of that period in British cycling.

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  7. I converted a derailleur bike to 3-spd IGH just to get the tick-tick-tick sound.

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  8. I'm excited for you. This spring I plan to scope out garage sales and the like for a vintage 10-speed road bike -- maybe to just give it new life. Best of luck with your new buy.

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  9. I feel The Need !!
    The Need for TWEED !!!

    Why have a 1959 Cadillac with fins and all? Any other car fulfills the transport need better in every way.

    Those times of going in grandpa's garage and waiting for him in the old 1962 Chevrolet Impala (4 dr 6 cyl) are the experience in itself - the light scents of gasoline, cooked oil, musty seat padding, vinyl, and other certainly carcinogenic particulates were absolute perfection. ... (Optional seat belts made by a parachute company!)

    There is something to be said for the FUN bike. I have a '65 dark red metallic Raleigh Sports but it is very purposeful in comparison to my 1956 Schwinn Corvette 3 speed. Just get on it and go. No special clothes, no click in, no toe strap (for now), no feeling of being on a saddle but more like a couch with the squeak of springs. Tingk tingk of gravel the fenders didn't catch hitting the frame. Who cares, it's not the Colnago or the SLX Paramount. I'm not racing anyone and they're not going to draft me on this beast.

    Them paperboys didn't know what they had!

    vsk

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  10. The tick tick tick is the bicycle's version of a happy purr.

    Congratulations! May the new old bike surprise and delight you.

    We still love our roadsters out here, halfway across the planet. At least one of them gets used daily.


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  11. Great News!

    "Liking.....trumps everything" gosh, that could be the title of the Human Owners Manual.

    I think an old bike (guitar, tool, photo.....) is a time traveler and we want to escort it into our modern life, converse with it about all it has seen and use it to demonstrate the three dimensionality of time.
    Or not.

    Cheers

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  12. For me it's the ability to time-travel. When I hop on a vintage bike I think of people that used to ride them: the factory workers, the weekend racers, the common people having fun and working with their bikes. When I'm off to the bakery or flying down a backroad I feel like I'm following in the footsteps of others and that's exciting to me.

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  13. Thought you might enjoy what I think is some bike "eye candy".

    http://peacockgroove.com/photos/

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  14. I totally understand. I live in a tiny apartment and recently got back into cycling. I bought a general city bike, but kept staring at vintage bikes. Now I have a vintage Motobecane. Couldn't restore it so I bought an all new VO headset and BB, and basically built it up from mostly parts bin pieces including modern aero brakes and fixie aero wheelset. Still, it's the frame that attracts me and makes me spend time just staring at it, wishing to ride it. And yet I still can't help looking for another vintage bike. Enough is never enough!

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  15. Having just had a health scare and determined to take up cycling again I'm pleased to see you're still blogging. Your enthusiasm for classic bikes really comes through and your writing and photography is still of the same very high quality.

    I'm mainly into photography and like the photographic equivalent of old bikes - old film cameras. I write the blog www.theonlinedarkroom.com. I'd love to write more about bicycles but I don't think my readers would be too pleased! I did write one post about my old D W Lindsay, a Dundee (Scotland) made light roadster, that you might find interesting: http://www.theonlinedarkroom.com/2013/01/d-w-lindsay.html

    I've yet to restore it but the plan is to do so by the summer. Best wishes for your continued success with Lovely Bicycle!

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    1. Can't recall how I found it, but I've been to your website - very nice. I have a few film cameras, but seldom photograph bikes with film. A couple of friends and I are putting together a dark room at the back of my house, though it's turning into a more challenging project than expected as dark room supplies here are not easily available.

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    2. Let me know what it is you need and I'll see if I can help you out. Anyone building a darkroom deserves help. Well done!

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    3. Well, a sorta funny problem is that online retailers will not ship darkroom chemicals to NI, and we have not found a shop closer than Dublin that carries a full range of them. Would you happen to know of any? A road trip to Dublin every time we need to replenish chemicals is a scenario I'd love to avoid.

      We are also having trouble finding a good used MF enlarger. We expected it would be easy to get one locally, as there are lots of photographers here who owned them before switching to digital. But it seems they've all sold or thrown out their equipment at this stage. Stuff comes up on ebay, but much of it looks shady and it's hard to judge the condition. Something like an enlarger I would like to get through a personal connection. If you know of anyone selling, I would appreciate it if you could put us in touch.

      As far as putting the darkroom together, I'm afraid there is not much praiseworthy going on. The room in its natural state is already darkroom-like, with adequate counterspace and a sink with running water. So it's really just a matter of lightproofing it and getting the supplies. We are hoping to start developing and printing in the spring.

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    4. Are you anywhere near Whitehead, County Antrim? I've found a guy with a Meopta Axomat 4a without lens for £20. It's nothing fancy but a decent, solid enlarger that would help get you up and running. There should be plenty about it on the web. I can send you a 50mm f4 Nikon enlarging lens that produces sharp 10x8 prints. Let me know what you think and I'll contact the Whitehead guy.

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    5. Thanks Bruce. I don't see your contact info, could you please get in touch at filigreevelo-at-yahoo? I need to consult the others, but I don't see how they could not want this.

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  16. Will you keep it historic as is, or because it is not of any notably historic value upgrade it to be more functional with a few modern components... more gears in the hub, or a NuVinci N360, hub brakes or Shimano rollers, SA front hub with brake and generator, new grips, etc? I'm thinking of that hill road that became a killer when you tried it out with a borrowed old 3-speed, the one where your commentors reminded us why we called them push bikes.

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    1. I'll do as little to it as possible beyond keeping it ridable and stick to the flat roads!

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    2. exciting; you can learn more about the traditional practice of wheeling one's bike up the hill.

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  17. I read the first sentence of this post to Herself, and she thought you had gone out and bought your own Border Collie puppy. :)

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  18. Oh no, you are starting your European bicycle collection!
    Well, I cannot resist old roadsters, though have never had one with rod brakes. I do love my vintage raleigh sport, which creaks, groans, is far too heavy and cannot get up hills of any importance. It rolls so well, and can be quite speedy once it gets going. I love riding it, except that the reality of my terrain requires something much lighter and with more gears.

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  19. She is beautiful.

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  20. I hear you, we all have our certain little irrational bike fetishes. Mine is late 60s/early 70s vintage 1,3,5 speed Schwinns with 26" wheels. Nothing really remarkable about these bikes other than they make good upright around town bikes, last forever and the "Electro-forging Process" is a piece of American manufacturing history.

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    1. Nothing remarkable indeed. Those bikes sprang from the mind of Frank Schwinn. Also known as God.

      Yes they last forever. All maintenance can be performed with a screwdriver and a Crescent wrench. In the hands of small children. My '58/59 Spitfire has outlasted perhaps ten children. Some of whom tried hard to finish the old bike off. Then a Category One racer used it for an errand bike. And it still runs well. With extended seatpost I can still ride the bike I got for my seventh birthday.

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  21. This fetish is completely odd to me but it certainly has it's power over you :)

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  22. So sweet!!!!! I just discovered your blog . . . . do you know if that Dirigo Dynamo ride takes place yearly??? Looks fabulous.

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  23. You're right. Vintage bikes have a distinctive smell, which grows stronger when you start tearing them down. I think it's a combination of ancient grease, machine oil, aging rubber, leather and road grime. When I'm tearing into the bottom bracket or the headset of one of my ancient Raleighs, my thoughts turn to Nottingham assembly-line workers who toiled away all those decades ago.

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  24. There's a lot to be said for acquiring a bike of the place, a bike that precedes you. It's a little like riding a horse that knows the path. That and like trumping everything combine to argue for the trusting of instincts, a very bike-friendly sentiment. And putting a bike's integrity ahead of notions of performance and efficiency is a becoming form of self-effacement. We show up and we ride what's there, and all is well.

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    1. That's an interesting way to put it, but it begs the question of why some bikes seem ill suited for the very places that begot them.

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    2. Probably some sort of bicycle feng shui. Or insert metaphor of thriving varietal here. Maybe it comes down to love versus commerce. I like it mysterious. As you say, "by forcing it into an explanation, we risk losing its true substance."

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  25. 1 April, 1956

    To; Lovely Bicycle,

    Dear Miss Bicycle, Please be advised that your Triumph Ladies Roadster is in final production and will certainly be completed in time for delivery, 1 February, 2014. While we cheerfully undertake special arrangements such as this, there are a number of details and clarifications that must be understood before proceeding further...

    1) While your satisfaction is of utmost importance to us(Triumph Bicycles division, Birmingham Small Arms, Ltd.), understand that the term of the warranty against defects in materials and workmanship, as applies to this bicycle, is 90 days. Assuming normal progress through our facility, and prompt shipment to the intermediary custodian of your cycle, that term should reasonably be expected to expire in mid July, 1956. Can't be helped.

    2) The ticking you will hear while riding your new(?) bicycle should be recognized for what it is, a mechanical characteristic of the arrangement and operation of various and several internal components of the 3 speed hub gear this model is equipped with. Please do not imagine this sound to be a manifestation of any mystical or anthropomorphic qualities which you may, or may not, believe to be inherent in this machine. The creaking you may hear from the bracket and pedals is a well known feature of the marque and a sign of quality known the world over, and will not be considered by us to be a cause to claim against the warranty (which will have expired before you experience it in any case). Can't be helped.

    Having dispatched with the legal Mumbo-Jumbo, let me express how delighted we (Triumph Bicycles, div., Birmingham Small Arms, Ltd.) are that someone like yourself, nearly 60 years hence, should harbor such an interest in our product! Delighted, simply Delighted. Evidently the great powers have avoided nuclear annihilation and, while that is cause to celebrate (perhaps a second egg with tomorrows toast and roasted tomato?), may we be so bold as to assume that war, as practiced by civilized people, still serves the purpose of settling differences between responsible Nations and that the fine products of Birmingham Small Arms, Ltd. are still the choice of the Commonwealths Armies? And that in future( if you'll pardon my little joke) you will favor us with an opportunity to supply your shoulder fired weapons and munitions requirements?

    As thrilled as we are to supply your cycling needs(simply THRILLED) we are, however, slightly mystified that you would resort to procuring your new Triumph Cycle in this unusual way. Since the model you have chosen is, without doubt, the apogee of cycle design and manufacturing, and is certainly available virtually unchanged in the year 2014 at thousands of Triumph Bicycle factors the world over, the expedient course would be to purchase the current model. The assumption is that you are an unstable person and not in possession of your faculties. Please do not be in any way embarrassed , our customers have often been eccentric, emotionally unsuited to operate a motorcar, or, simply foreign. Can't be helped.

    In closing, let me again thank you for choosing Triumph Bicycles, div. Birmingham Small Arms, Ltd. and ask that when you see one of our fine products of the future(perhaps an Atomic Powered flying Car, or handheld BSA Laser Death Ray?), you will fondly remember our long relationship and your joy and satisfaction with your Triumph Bicycle.

    Sincerely,

    Dismond Spinnington
    2nd assistant to the junior Mngr. of Production,
    Triumph Bicycles, div.
    Birmingham Small Arms

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    1. Who you are and how you got ahold of that document I don't know. But you should know that, in of itself, it paints an inaccurate picture of this machine's history. The bicycle was in fact originally completed ahead of schedule, in late 1987 (in the shed of one of the former employees, who was kept on as consultant and tasked with honouring all of Triumph's backorders). However, when a photo was sent to me for approval it revealed the bicycle to be the wrong colour, slightly larger in size than specified, and a diamond frame at that. I pointed this out to the remaining living representatives of the Triumph Cycle Co, and they responded graciously by agreeing to rebuild it. The new bicycle was completed in 2011, and photos revealed it to be exactly as specced. Unfortunately at this time I was no longer living in Europe. The costs of importing the bicycle proved prohibitive and the Triumph Cycle Co lacked the storage facilities to house the machine until the completion date initially agreed upon. Reluctantly, it was decided that the bicycle would be sold to a local customer, and my deposit of £4 (well, technically the deposit placed on my behalf by my Great-Aunt Lovely, as I had not yet been born) was at length returned to me.

      To be honest, at this stage I tried to put the whole thing behind me. I hoped the bicycle and its owner were happy together, frolicking in the Coventry countryside, but gave no further thought to the matter. What I did not know was that, shortly after, the bicycle's owner would set sail for Northern Ireland - the home of her fiance.

      By all accounts, their wedding, on the shores of Lough Neagh, was splendid. But 2 years and 5 children later, the exhausted new bride hadn't the same enthusiasm to ride her cherished Triumph. In addition, in due time the husband took quite keenly to drink and womanising. This distressed her quite a bit, as in pursuit of these pastimes, and, mindful of the latest crackdown on drink driving, he would routinely take off on the Triumph, thus leaving her without a bicycle. She thought long and hard, and finally came upon a solution. As an early for Christmas gift in 2013, she bought her husband a bike of his own - a racer. And wouldn't you know. He came to enjoy roadcycling so much as to no longer have time for his other, less savory pursuits. Some weeks later, he bought a matching bike for his wife, and together they began training for the upcoming Sportive.

      With the arrival of the new year, came the question of what to do with the Triumph, as each now preferred to ride their slick carbon racer exclusively. They were about to put the forlorn machine up on ebay, when a friend of a neighbour of a friend who knew a boy who was a neighbour of a friend of a friend of someone the other boy went to school with (or was it worked with?), brought them the surprising news of my presence on Northern Irish soil, and in the neighbouring county no less. And the rest, as they say, is history.

      That said, if you have the original of that letter whose contents you've posted here, I would appreciate having a look, for sentimental reasons. Drop me a line.

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    2. 13 Oct. 1971

      Dear Lovely Bicycle,

      In clearing out the desk of Mr. Dizmond Spinnington II, recent Head of Records and Archives , Triumph Bicycles, div. of Ti. Raleigh Industries, I discovered a copy of a letter to you written by Mr. Spinnington just prior to his recent departure from this Company.

      I would strongly encourage you to refuse delivery of this letter if not already received. The envelope was likely to have been addressed in lavender ink and will smell strongly of Pachouli. If you have suffered the misfortune of reading this letter already, I would like to take this opportunity to distance Triumph Bicycles, div. of Ti. Raleigh Industries from it's contents and the actions of Mr. Spinnington more broadly. Especially his inquiries about your physical particulars and marital status. His late father, Dizmond Spinnington, would most certainly regret his sons behavior in a position granted to him out of paternal concern and affection.

      Also, I would personally advise you not to accept his offer to meet in 2014 to discuss your request for a copy of a letter from a relative of yours to the former Triumph Bicycles div. of Birmingham Small Arms LTD. Firstly, the letter probably does not exist as filling special orders of the type in question were not initiated by customers but by our Advanced Marketing Div. of the Future Products Div. Secondly, though Mr. Spinnington will be approaching 75 years of age in 2014, his behavior in the present does not promise any hope for improvement, regardless of the maturing affect his recent appointment to the House Of Lords may provide. The 4pounds left on deposit by your Aunt was almost certainly solicited after the order was filed by Mr. Dizmond Spinnington II himself, while he was posted in that office before being moved to the Records and Archives Directorship. Funds were often obtained by Mr. Spinnington in that way for his not insignificant out-of-office expenses. Therefore, money not officially received by Triumph Bicycles div, Ti. Raleigh Industries Ltd. and ipso facto, not recoverable through us. Can't be helped I'm afraid.

      Personally, I was pleased to get a glimpse of the future from you letter to Mr. Spinnington Sr. The future sounds ever so interesting and lively! 5 children in 2 years, remarkable. I am interested in the progress of our Great Nation and am involved in the crusade to elect England's first Woman Prime Minister within the decade. I am certain we have will been successful in this endeavor and that you are enjoying the results of the progressive policies of Prime Minister Doris Lessing.

      I accept your thanks in advance...

      Georgina Eliot
      Acting Director,
      Records and Archives,
      Triumph Bicycles div.
      Ti. Raleigh Industries Ltd.

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    3. Great Stuff this!
      Reminiscent of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.
      Here's hoping you aren't needing any spares from the factory.
      Cheers

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    4. Dear Ms Eliot,

      It pleases me to agree that Mrs. Cattington-O'Leary is indeed a remarkably robust woman. How cheerfully she delivered those wee twins just 10 months after birthing the triplets.

      On a separate note, your words of warning in paragraph 3 cause me some embarrassment. Indeed earlier this afternoon I already met with the gentleman in question at a local public house, accepting his invitation in hopes of glimpsing this so-called letter. Mr. Spinnington plied me with exotic cocktails and enticed me me with catalogues of early lugwork, whispering promises of delivering the very prototypes in a crimson silken satchel. Thankfully, I kept my wits about me and, when we emerged from the adjacent B&B some hours later (he insisted we watch a lengthy informercial to do with Caribbean vacation rentals and this establishment boasted rooms with large screen TVs), I absolutely refused his pleadings to see me again. What cheek, to think that I would fall for such a sales pitch, especially as anyone who is anyone presently vacations in Ballycastle.

      Well, Ms Eliot. Thank you for your kind help and you need not concern yourself with this sordid business any longer. The Triumph sends you her regards, vacationrentalsinballycastle

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  26. "Is it the vintage-ness itself that I miss? Is it the elegant proportions, the matte black paint, the faded golden lettering and the smell of old steel? And is it also the caked dirt, the hard to budge bolts, the parched leather, the stiff springs? Is it, finally, the creaking?"

    Beautiful.

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  27. I've just finished sorting out a rusty old ( 60s? ) Pashley roadster, a very British brand although mine has a Dutch saddle and tyres and a German hub gear. I love the ride quality, the newer hub brake Pointer Glorie I rode is very twitchy in comparison - maybe the rear rod brakes act like a steering stabiliser?
    I had to do a bit of modernising to it though as it's going to be used for commuting in London, a 22t rear cog and a 27" front wheel with a deep drop caliper brake.

    Do you plan to keep even the silly gearing?

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    1. I'll ride it and see just how silly the gearing is before deciding. The mountain roads here are so steep, that a simple cog change would not be sufficient anyway. And the flat roads are, well, flat, so its native gearing could be okay. I live on a flat peninsula that's at the base of a mountain, so its nice to have that choice of flat vs hilly.

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    2. With an AW hub and sprockets of 46x22T the low gear would be 40.8 inches. That's just about the same as the 39x26 low on the old Moser. With an FW hub and the same sprockets the low would be 36.3 inches. That's the start of mountain gearing.

      Of course fitting a 22T sprocket limits your top gear as well.

      If your Triumph is old enough it may have a 48T chainring. Better peek inside the case and see. Wouldn't want to decide the bike is hard to pedal when it's merely an antique chainring standard tripping you up.

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  28. This year I plan to restore my Grandad's Sunbeam 3-speed to a working state. It's a wartime model with no frills and a lot of BSA components, he bought it in 1946 after demob from the army and must have used it a lot. He died too early for me to know him so riding his old bike is the nearest thing to a conversation we have.

    It rides like no other machine!

    John B.

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  29. Oh good, glad to see this development. Now we can see some cool photos of you and your vintage bike...in the right setting :)

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  30. Essential viewing if you haven't already seen it. And fascinating stuff for the true vintage bicycle fan...
    http://vimeo.com/39401575

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  31. No matter how much new steel is made, I have to have an old bike or two. No explanation. I just like the looks and variety in my herd. I ride them, too.

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  32. Re your darkroom, perhaps someone here can help:

    http://photography.belfastschoolofart.com/

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  33. About those creaks in the post and the comments. You shouldn't have any. I expect you will have creaks when you take delivery but then you fix them. A creak indicates something is moving that shouldn't. Parts wear and no longer fit perfectly. Tighten them, shim them, lube them or replace them. Otherwise it creaks until it breaks. And it will.

    Small squeaks in the frame of sprung saddles are usually not worth troubling with, though many will get quiet with enough effort. Chaincase rattles are part of the bike. The hub ticks. Tires on pavement. Chain over cogs. The rest should be quiet.

    Pictures please ASAP. The suspense is palpable. It's amazing how us readers are being drawn into the new bike excitement. Good writing.

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    1. Alloy cranks may eventually break but it's very unlikely the steel cranks on this bike will.

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    2. Steel crank arms basically don't break but cotterpins do. Loose or ill-fitted cotters are a major source of creaking. Ride long enough with bad cotters and the spindlehole on the crankarm will wear.
      Swaged spiders separate from steel crankarms and that's the same as a broken crank to the rider. It might creak for a moment before separation but mostly it happens quickly. Nothing to do about that one but get a new and hopefully better crank.

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  34. This will be wonderful to see, I miss seeing pics of your vintage bikes and was thinking you had given up on them I favour of new bikes. That would have been a terrible pity as old bikes have a wonderful ride quality I think.

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  35. Congratulations! I've also just acquired a vintage bike - two, in fact - the reasoning behind which I couldn't seem to explain. The two bikes are circa 1960s with a Sears label, though probably made by Raleigh. Your post articulates exactly my feelings about why I HAD to have these bikes. They are all original and in amazing condition, save the dry rotted tires. Chain guards. Full fenders. Only one tiny spot of rust on the paint between the two of them. I go to bed at night dreaming of riding them through the parks this summer.

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