Thursday, December 19, 2013

Trip to Japan - street bikes part 1

lots of step-through bikes
dynamo hubs
and/or bottle dynamos
with lights
drum brakes
proper mudguards
electric assist
child portage
chain-guards and chain cases
and mini velos

very little crabon

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Pacenti Pari-Moto 650 x 38B white gumwalls by Panaracer

just got these from Canada of all places.
Cycles Toussaint get them made
and I suppose Kirk Pacenti gets them made as well
since they've got his name on them
but then they've also got Panaracer's name on them
because they actually made them
pretty much just like they make a slightly wider, white 650B tyre
and another tyre the same width but black
for a different company based in Japan.

So they say 38mm wide but Vern Gauge says they're really 36mm wide.
Nevertheless they fit really well inside Gilles Berthoud's rather dumbly-sized
mudguards, being as they are 40mm wide.

So loving that really.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Stupid eBay sellers

we all know them
crappy phone pic
or too many studio photos
incessant relisting of same item
a short hiatus
then relist as if it's a new one
"on sale!"
"free postage"
here then are some of the worst I have come across
for your reading pleasure

ok, so it's got internal cable routing
Ideale 92 saddle, Maxicar hubs, etc, etc
and it's in really clean condition
but $6000? I mean, come on
I could buy a new custom frame rando for that much
and besides
it's a frame for someone no taller than 5'1"

I know I'm right because in 6 months of relisting it hasn't sold

this guy is a classic
one of a number of serial offenders who should know better
because they seem to be ebay shop owners
crappy, non-drive side photo (one only)
non-matching tyres
and a warning the bike needs servicing
but at least he's offering free shipping... :/
but $13,000??? even for a fillet-brazed Routens, that's steep.
a mint condition Rene Herse as featured in this book
recently sold for only $9,000.
been listed for months
and 19 failed offers in its history
but 131 people are watching it
so I suppose probikesfrance is waiting for a moron with more money than sense
to click the buyitnow button
only problem is most of those dickheads buy carbon, not old classic bikes...

probikefrance delights in charging twice what anyone is ever likely to pay.
in fact he's always so exactly over the mark that by halving his prices you can
get a pretty clear idea of market value for any particular item.
new Gilles Berthoud saddle?
currently on sale here for $90
but at probikefrance you can have it for $216.00 with free postage
I could go on but I've got a bored headache already

one of my favourite ebay idiots
pb bikes (perhaps a distant relative?)
based in Portlandia
want a vintage plastic bidon
that will make all your smart waters 
taste like you're drinking
from a vintage kids' wading pool? 
it's New Old Stock though! 
so it's $150 + postage!

He does have some spectacular stuff, I'll give him that much
so much so you wonder where it all comes from.
I have a theory that he's actually a collector and doesn't want to sell anything at all
like those hoons with "for sale 0400 555 555" in the window of their hotted up Hyndai Excel
they just want you to ring them up so they can talk shit about cars, or score a root, or both.

With 98 pages of stuff, he's got plenty to keep you amused.

And now for the piece de—whaa? 
they're not there anymore?
looks like the "Budget Bicycle Center" has closed its eBay store altogether
they had some of the best, over-priced re-listings on eBay
and the delicious irony of the name just meant their site was 
laugh-out-loud ridiculous from go to whoah.

Just goes to show you can fleece a punter in off the street
but people on the net have too much choice
and knowledge to be taken in that easily.

He's even got a thread all to himself on bikeforums. (pbbikes gets a mention too!)

Monday, October 28, 2013

with Abandon

malvern star's marketing team back in '86
could never have known
how prescient the name of their new model

Saturday, October 26, 2013

JPR decaleur

after reading JH's post on
"bump-proof" decaleurs
I had a look to see if I had posted a pic of the wonderful
jpr decaleur
made by Jo Routens' son
so here 'tis.

immune to bumps as the bag slides on sideways
the two steel sleeves are bolted to the handlebar bag's internal aluminium stiffener

sad to say
I've lost the lovely little occy strap that held everything in place
it must have pinged off without me noticing
but even so
the systems still works beautifully
and so much simpler than this.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Stephs' bike - update

still well pleased with how this bike came out
with aforementioned saddle
the shimano deer-head derailleur set
later known as deore
the sugino 5-pin, tiny bcd crankset from my viscount
the white 35mm tyres and hammered mudguard
not to mention the suntour ratcheting thumb-shifters
and custom artisanal leather mudflap

it's just a shockingly stylish build

100 points to your house if you can correctly identify the car in the shot above

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Dubbin fetish

almost as much as I love leather saddles
I love Joseph Lyddy's Dubbin
it took this gorgeous Lamplugh spring leather saddle from this
to this 
in a matter of minutes

the top pic is how she arrived
about 10min after the second pic was taken
she looked like the first pic again
probably used about 10 separate applications before she kept
the lustre you see above.
a hairdryer on low is excellent for melting the Dubbin into the leather

Saddle from my favourite French charity
for my niece's beautiful Shogun commuter
(must take some up to date pics)

At the jeweller's

I call him that because he's not really a frame-builder
and he's not just a mechanic
he makes stuff to fix or enhance bikes 
and has the tolerances of a jeweller or horologist
+/- 0.01mm is his definition of
close enough for rock and roll
he's also got a bit of a tool fetish
which I can totally understand
there's nothing better
than having the right tool for the job.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Parts organisation on a grand scale

mrs feelofsteel 
was impressed with my storage solutions 
and labelling.
been doing so much searching on eBay in French
that the words were starting to get into my head.
was also interesting to see the stuff that I accumulate most of
definitely drivetrain stuff 
Composants de Transmission
but also surprisingly brake stuff too 
Etriers et Leviers de Freins
and pedals.

Accumulation of pedals

or pedales, if vous préférez

Monday, July 22, 2013

Seat clusters

seat clusters are where the seat stays join the seat tube and sometimes also the top tube
there's a lot of different ways this can be done.
sometimes its integrated into a lug
the cluster also has to incorporate the action of the seat post clamping bolt
a tiny distortion of the seat tube of only fractions of a mm.
makers worried about rip-offs tend to put some kind of embossing in the seat stay cap
their name or logo
really good bikes don't care so much
but it's a lovely detail all the same

Diamond frame, handbuilt in the 50s in Geelong from 531

Centurion, lovely chromed, wrap-around stay caps

Dawes Super Galaxy

F.W. Evans

As the name suggests, with curly stays n'all

Elvin? Elwin? tarck bike

lovely resto with complete Superbe Pro group

recently made bike I forgot who by

immaculate Concorde with gold-plated stays

fancy chromed cluster but somehow 
not as lovely as when they wrap to the front of the seat tube.