Monday, August 27, 2007


Despite fine weather and a shed full of functional bicycles, I mostly stayed indoors last weekend. I had plans of building up some wheels for CT-B's Holdsworth, but a glitch in my spoke calculator spreadsheet put paid to that. Fortunately Rick Woodward's OSH non-compliant polisher was more reliable, and I got a nice shine on the Fiamme Sport 71 rims and Campagnolo Nuovo Tipo hubs without losing any fingers.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Experiments with Evapo-Rust

Rust may be the biggest problem when you are trying to preserve an old bike in original but patina'd condition. Most rust removers are acidic, and incompatible with old paint and chrome, not to mention skin. Evapo-Rust removes rust by selective chelation, without damaging surrounding paint or plating, and is non-toxic.
My first experiments were with rusty chrome plated parts- a set of Zeus Competicion chain wheel fixing bolts, and a Cinelli steel track stem. I soaked the parts in Evapo-Rust for 24 hours. As you can see, it did not miraculously restore the chrome, but it has left the surface free of rust. The black residue is carbon and will wipe or wirebrush off.
To prevent re-rusting, all you need to do is wipe the surface with Evapo-Rust after it has been rinsed off.

My next experiment is to remove the rust from the chainstay's of CTB's Holdsworth, by wrapping Evapo-Rust soaked rags around the stays, and covering them with Glad Wrap to prevent evaporation. I'll post the 'after' photos later this weekend.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Letterbox full of goodness

Today the postie brought the latest William Gibson, a good secondhand pair of Bicycle Fixation knickers, and an SR Royal Extra Super Light stem.
Most of SR's output was functional but uninspiring melt-forged crap, but, pre Yen Shock, their top of the line products were something else. Cold-forged, drilled, milled, slotted, and hollowed out, SR's Royal line mimicked the fashionable customised 'Drillium' components , but with the benefits of a factory warranty. They also supplied crankarm forgings to MAVIC and OMAS.
I already have earlier model fluted SR Royal SL stem and a matching seatpost on my Echelon Spectra. The hollow stem is destined for my putative Rory O'Brien frame, with some early Superbe Pro deraillers & hubs, Sugino Super Mighty cranks & seatpost and Dia-Compe brakes.

Catalog picture from Mr Gami's catalog scans page

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

A shopping trip

Last Saturday I went forth on my demountable, with BoB trailer attached, to pick up a Legnano frame from Tony at Cycle City. On the way I stopped at Bunnings, and got me a big manly Swedish axe and a gallon of Evapo-Rust (of which more later).

While I was rooting about at Cycle City I found a pair of 28h Fiamme Red label tubulars laced to Campagnolo Record wide flange hubs. The wheels themselves are pretty cool, but I had to have them for the Hills Cycle Works wheelcovers.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Retro Ride Report 12/8/07

You might think that Retroriders would stay abed on rainy mornings, but you would be mistaken.
Despite worse weather than the last Okoroire Ride, we had 6 starters on Sunday.
Mark Skelly, Dan Rosser, Peter Alexander, celebrity economist Chris Tennent-Brown, Donna and I managed a short lap of Mangere before retiring to the loungeroom for more coffee.
Dan showed exceptionally good form in debuting his brand new Mercian 753.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Baylis Cycles website

More photos of Brian Baylis' work work from Carlos Martell.
Two galleries, one showing the painting process on a Baylis custom frame, the other showing the customisation of a Pacenti lugset.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

More dodgy retro fashion.

After a decent interval of procrastination, I fitted some press studs to a pair of cutdown NZo 307 Lites, thereby converting them into a decent pair of cycling plus-twos. I have been commuting in them for a couple of weeks, worn over a pair of NZo Cruiseliners.
While you can get knickers in hemp, or wool gabardine, or fancy Swiss nano-fabric, the cutdown 307s are hard to beat for cost, ease of laundering and Nzo's legendary crashworthiness.
The only downside is that NZo doesn't acually make these themselves. If you think you would like a pair, or better a pair of knee length Dobies, feel free to deluge NZo with emails.

Monday, August 06, 2007

The Campagnolo Clothes Hanger

It turns out that the Campagnolo corkscrew was not the first application of Tullio Campagnolo's genius to domestic matters.
On the CR list yesterday, Dale Brown outed these patents for fancy clothes hangers, designed to prevent clothes being creased while they hang.

The Adventures of Sir Maldoror

Carlos Martell (right) , aka Sir Maldoror is Brian Baylis' (left) protege at the new San Diego-based framebuilders & painters cooperative .

Lately Carlos has been putting some of their framebuilding and restoration work online at
Without giving away too many of Baylis' hard-earned professional secrets, Sir Maldoror shows some of the processes involved in restoring vintage bikes after after a lifetime of hard use.
Some of these jobs, like paintstripping by hand are just nasty, while others, such as masking lugs, require incredible attention to detail in what seems like a mundane task.

More links to Baylis' work:
Large Fella on a Bike Framebuilders questionaire

Photo of Brian and Carlos by Matt Gorski, from WoolJersey