Friday, June 30, 2006

A coupla Coppi-era Bianchis

With the Bianchi-theme Retro Ride only a week away, here are a couple of bikes to stoke the anticipation of the Bianchi tifosi

While surfing my favourite Japanese bike sites last night I found this 1953 Bianchi that deserves a wider audience.
It looks like this bike was carefully stored in the back of the barn when one of the crank cotter pins wore out- see how the front crankarm is drooping.

Peter Johnson's 1956 Bianchi has a few interesting features like an early Campagnolo 2-bolt steel seatpost, and Ottusi-modified Brooks B17 saddle.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

1963 Condor Italia

Frame serial #6305

Not my size, but at NZ$72 on Trademe I couldn't help myself.
I suspect that the fork isn't original, but I'm sufficiently charmed by the British Cycling Federation stickers on each forkleg not to care.

As purchased there wasn't too much to get excited about except the frame, which has faded but original paint, a good headbadge and exceptionally sharp lugwork.
Although it is blue/grey now, unfaded paint under the clamped on fittings is a rich purple.

The lugs seem to be sandcastings, which must have been unusual by the time this frame was built. The ID of the seat lug is stepped to allow the top of the seattube to be cut square, a common practice with modern investment cast lugs.
The Campagnolo 1010 dropouts have no eyelets, suggesting that a single purpose racing frame rather than a generic English clubmans bike.

More photos
Condor page at Classic Rendezvous

Headset________________Campagnolo Gran Sport
Bottom bracket___________Stronglight
Brakes_________________Mafac 2000 (Mafac Racer pictured)
Brake levers_____________Mafac
Shift levers______________Zeus Criterium
Front derailler___________Zeus (Campagnolo Gran Sport pictured)
Rear derailler____________Zeus Criterium (Campagnolo Nuovo Record pictured)
Rims__________________700c clincher
Saddle_________________Brooks Professional (Ideale Mod 90 pictured)

Thursday, June 15, 2006

The Retro Ride

The Retro Ride is a monthly group ride from my house in Otahuhu, Auckland, New Zealand.

Although the use of a vintage or retro bike, and the wearing of vintage clothing and regalia is encouraged, it is by no means compulsory.

Because the ride leaves from my lounge room, the Retro Ride is by invite only.
That's the way it will be until someone opens a cafe nearby that is open early on Sunday mornings.

On a good day, we'll cover about 60kms at a conversational pace, stopping for coffee somewhere in the South Auckland countryside. On a miserable wet day, we'll do an hour around Mangere and then drink coffee in front of the fire.

Attendance varies. Rain or shine, someone always turns up, but we have started one ride with two riders, others with as many as 14.

Occasionally, Westie heartthrob and track racing legend Matt Sinton organises a West Auckland Retro Ride from the Swanson Railway Station cafe.
Girls, watch this space...