My collection of bicycles has one commonality in that none of them were purchased new and in most cases were put together from a mix of used and recycled parts.
They cover a span of 50 years with the oldest being a 1951 and the newest being a 2006 and I do hope you enjoy the little tour and commentary.
You may click any image for a larger view.
1966 Moulton Mk1:
I acquired this Moulton early in the spring of 2013 and it has been completely refitted with modern components; Shimano Nexus 7 speed, Shimano generator, handbuilt wheels, and dual pivot brakes. The GB handlebars and stem date to 1973 and the Sugino Competition crank also dates to the early to mid seventies. The bicycle is an absolute delight to ride in every respect and was a bicycle I sought from the first time I was able to ride one.
I wanted to build a retro styled path / road racer and found this frame hanging from the rafters of the co-op in 2008 and saved it from getting tossed in the recycling pile. It got a coat of red paint, found a repro fork and some bars, and used the fixed gear wheels off my old Peugeot. The bars have been cloth wrapped and then given half a dozen coats of amber shellac and it is topped off with an Ideale leather saddle.
Raleigh Safari (fixed gear conversion):
Picked the frame and fork up for pocket change and then fitted up a set of spare fixed wheels I had with Specialized Team Control tyres, added a Nitto Bullmoose bar, and swapped the steel crank for a Sugino XT that I singulated. It is a lot of fun to ride in the snow as those tyres suck up the bumps and have excellent hook up.
Proctor Road Bicycle:
The Proctor was hand built here in Edmonton in the 1990′s and is a finely built bicycle with some unique frame details, it is light, fast, rides beautifully, and handles like it is on rails.
I am well into the process of re-fitting the bicycle with a full Shimano 600 tri-colour group and just have to build new wheels around the matching hubs.
1954 Raleigh Sports:
Pulled from a dusty garage this bike languished in my shop for a number of years and the old stem took a great deal of persuasion to come away from a frame it had been joined to for 55 years. Once that was done I upgraded the old EA1 Dunlops to modern 700c wheels and replaced many of the rusty steel bits with shiny alloy ones and fitted some white Bluemel fenders.
1955 Raleigh Lenton “Reg Harris”:
In the 1950′s reg Harris was one of the greatest names in cycling and a hero in his native England, in 1955 he lent his name to the venerable Lenton. Although superficially similar to the 1954 this frame was built with Reynolds 531 tubes and is the fixed gear model, for a few more dollars you could have ordered the bike with a 3 speed.
This bike came to me because of a random meeting with a fellow who was helping settle the estate of a friend who had passed away and had owned and ridden this bicycle since it was new. That fellow is now a good friend and we often talk about the old Lenton which I have had since 2008.
I saved this bicycle from being tossed into a dumpster (I kid you not). She is one of those bicycle that warrants her own little page so I can show finer details and have done more restoration work since this picture was taken in the spring of 2010.
The chrome frame and fork are quite eye catching but the bike itself is middle of the road. The new / old parts I installed like the Stronglight crank, Marcel Berthet pedals, and custom Arvon hubs and hand built wheels are astonishingly nice and were waiting for something like this to come along. The shifting is being handled by Suntour Vx derailleurs and Simplex retrofriction shifters which as as nice as friction shifters get.
And now for something completely different…
This bicycle was hand built right here in Edmonton by Jim Moulden who initially worked building Proctor Townsend bicycles before going out on his own and founded The Hardcore Bicycle Shop which has now been in business for over 20 years. Jim retired from the bike business many years ago.
It is a wonderfully made steel bicycle that is unbelievably light at 23 pounds nekkid and isvery responsive… came to as a flat bar winter “beater” and I fitted it out with drop bars, new wheels, and an eight speed drive train and have used it on and off the road and even used it for a century ride.
In August of 2012 I had the frame re-finished in the black powdercoat as the original enamel was on it’s last legs.
1987 Kuwahara Cascade:
I picked this bicycle up 8 years ago for the princely sum of $25.00 and it was in nearly mint, original condition. I have probably ridden this bicycle more than any bike I have owned and it served me well as a fixed gear commuter for many years and then I decided to turn it into a full on 26 inch wheeled expedition bicycle since it was too nice for the daily grind.
It was Kuwahara’s top of the line, hand built bicycle and is built on an Ishiwata quad butted tube set and has been fitted with a Suntour drivetrain, vintage Blackburn racks, and is topped with a Brooks B17 Imperial demo saddle that I tested before their release.
In the world of hand built bicycles there are but a hand full of builders who can be called masters and among those, Ron Cooper was regarded to be the best of them all. He passed away in December 2012 at the age of 80 and continued to work right until the time of his death.
This bicycle is amazing in every detail and the frame and fork are without flaw or equal, and the attention to detail is amazing. The parts are a mix of Suntour, Sugino, Campagnolo, and Zeus and are pieces I considered to be the best of their era.
It rides on some vintage Sansin hubs laced to Araya red label wheels and I also have a set of Campagnolo / Ambrosio tubular wheels I can run if I am feeling a little racier.
It hits the curb at 21 pounds and comes off the line like a rocket, handles like it is on rails. and yet… is so smooth and comfortable that you might think you were riding a touring bicycle. I wish I still had the legs to really take advantage of this bicycle’s potential but enjoy the ride nonetheless.
My custom built extra bike, called this to differentiate it from the commercial Extra cycle conversion which is a fine kit but I am a do it yourself kind of guy.
I built this bicycle in 2008 after seeing other people’s efforts at building their own longbikes and it has not seen many changes since that initial build although I have upgraded a few things as better spares became available.
It uses a Norco Katmandu frame up front and I recycled the rear triangle from a full suspension CCM to create the extension and if I was to try and tell you what I have hauled with this bike it would need it’s own page.
It is also the most stable winter bicycle and the long wheelbase makes for a smooth and stable ride and by un-weighting the rear makes it very easy to spin up.
The new bags are re-purposed military surplus rain packs that I purchased for $2.99 each.
Update: On Sunday, November 26th I converted my extrabike into an Extrabike by adding a front hub motor.
The Raleigh Twenty
I have had a long love affair with the Raleigh 20 and our family currently has four of them and of those, my Phillip’s 20 is probably the most customized bike I own and maybe one of the most customized 20′s on the planet.
I owe this to the late great Sheldon Brown who served to inspire many people like myself to restore and customize the Raleigh 20 or it variants like my Phillip’s.
I currently own a stock 1972 Raleigh 20 that I received as a wedding gift and it is a near match to my wife’s 1974 Raleigh 20, my youngest daughter has a 1978 Raleigh 20 that she adores, while my oldest rides a 1980 Raleigh Saffron which is a non folding 20 inch wheeled adult bicycle.
Here is our little fleet of folders and one Raleigh Saffron…
1980 Raleigh Saffron:
Although my daughter was ready for a larger bike she found that she was not comfortable on 24 inch wheels and I sought to find her a folder but by chance came across this Saffron. It is the non folding version of the Compact and without the poor hinge assembly is a much better bicycle. It was made in Italy for Raleigh and my daughter has been riding it for three years and likes the fact she can keep it forever as it will grow with her.
Wit the smaller wheels and good geometry it is a very stable and smooth riding bicycle and it has custom built wheels and better brakes.
“Basil” 1978 Raleigh Twenty, British Model:
The British version of the R20 differs from the export model in that it was fitted with the slightly larger 451 wheel and came with better Raleigh steel brakes and as such is a little quicker and rides a little higher. I realize that when I took this picture the saddle had not yet been lowered to accommodate my daughter who is only 4 feet and a few inches tall.
1972 Raleigh Twenty:
Received as a wedding gift this August from a good friend… this bicycle is in nearly mint condition and I replaced the front wheel with an alloy one and upgraded the brake pads to give it better stopping power. More upgrades are in the works but I probably won’t change the upright configuration as I only use it for short trips and use it as a loaner.
1974 Raleigh Twenty, Portland 2012:
This bicycle was in mint condition when I purchased it for the whopping sum of $40.00 and I built up new alloy wheels and upgraded the braking system to give it adequate stopping power before I gave it to my girlfriend (who is now my wife).
“Forrest”, 1973 Phillip’s Twenty, super modified – It does not get more radical than this when it comes to Twenties and I have devoted a full page to cover all the modifications this bike has seen. We also have a long and interesting history as this was the first bike I could ride after my back injury.
Featured in A Little Snapshot this is a bicycle that came into my hands with no looking on my part as a friend pointed me to an ad on a local classified ad.
Aside from the grips and the loss of it’s chaincase the bicycle is all original and has a wonderful story behind it (see link).
It is is fine shape aside from the cranks which will need some love and perhaps a replacement and is a very pleasing bicycle to take pootling around the city.
Peugeot AO8 Fixed Gear Conversion:
For 2013 I have refitted the AO8 with a set of handbuilt fixed wheels, new racier tyres, new fenders, and a rack to make it a more utilitarian ride.
These old Peugeots have very nice ride qualities, their slack angles and long wheelbases tame the roughest roads and the ride is still very pleasing on the 27 by 1 tyres at 100psi.
It has an O ring lock on the back wheel which disables the bike but will not prevent someone from picking it up and running off with it.
Rocky Mountain Blizzard:
The call of the wild can be rather strong and when the road isn’t a road and it is covered with dirt, rocks, and roots the Blizzard is by far, one of the nicest steel hardtails ever built.
We have one of the nicest urban park systems in North America and there is a lot of great riding to be found just a few miles from my back door.
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