Status: Belongs to a Client
Made in London, England
Frame & Fork: Reynolds 531
Groupset: Campagnolo Record/Nuovo Record (NOS)
Brakeset: Modolo Corsa (NOS)
Bars: Original-Gerry Burgess (GB)
Stem: Original-Gerry Burgess
Wheelset: Mavic MA2 rims (NOS) with Early Campagnolo hubs (NOS) and Michelin Dynamic Classic 700x28c tires
I drove to Vernon to look at some Campagnolo bicycle parts that were advertised on Marketplace. That's when I met John. He had this bike that had belonged to his dad and he had planned to restore it so he purchased lots of parts on Ebay. In the end, he decided he would never finish the project so he was selling off the parts. I bought a few things and he gave me the frame and fork in case I could use them someday. After getting the frame and parts home, I contacted him to tell offer to rebuild the bike for him. John decided that he wanted to finish the project so he delivered the remaining parts and I got to work.
There were quite a few challenges with this rebuild. The frame was incredibly rusty and even had a few rust pin-holes on the seat tube. I stripped the frame to bare metal, treated the inside with Rust-Mort, used body filler on the pin-holes and a few dents, and primed and painted. The bike was originally built for 27x1 1/4 wheels. John had some NOS hubs but no rims so I decided to build it with 700c wheels since there would be far more tire options. I found some really nice NOS Mavic rims to go with the NOS Campagnolo hubs that John provided. To do the conversion, I needed 64mm long reach brakes which are relatively rare. I found some nice NOS Modolo Corsa's and they worked well. John provided the Brooks Professional saddle so I used matching Brooks bar tape and gum brake hoods. Because there was lots of clearance, I used 28mm tires so John would have a plush ride. I hope it brings many years of joy to John and I also hope his dad gets a chance to ride it.
Status: Belongs to a Client
Made in Canada
Frame & Fork: Unknown Steel Tubing
Groupset: CCM cutout in the chainring
Wheelset: Steel rims with White Wall Kenda K75 S-7 Schwinn 26 x 1-3/4; 47-571 ISO (571) Tires
Neil brought this CCM to me last year. I'll put the bike's story here after Neil gets it to me.
This looked like it would be relatively simple to rebuild but it actually proved to have a few challenges. This was only my second time painting a bike with fenders. I developed a jig that would hold the fenders in a way that would allow me to prime and paint both the tops and undersides at the same time. What I hadn't anticipated was how much paint it would require. The fenders used as much as the frame and fork. The black sanctions were a fun challenge as well. In the end, I thought the paint job bike came out well. Another challenge was the grips. It's not easy to find this vintage style. There is a place in France that supplies them but they were lost in the mail for over a month. The biggest challenge was the tires, though. The originals were Canada 26 x 1 1/2, meaning they were a unique size made for Canadian bicycles which are no longer made. Unfortunately, I read some false information online about another size that would work. They didn't. Finally, thanks to Sheldon Brown's wonderfully informative website, I was able to learn that S7 Schwinn tires, 26 x 1 3/4 (ISO 571) were the same size and I was able to find a set that fit perfectly. In the end, it all came together and I'm happy with the result. I hope that it provides joy to Neil and his family for at least another 50 years!
Status: In Progress
Made in Belgium
Frame & Fork: Columbus Custom Neuron
It was hard to pass up an Eddy Merckx, especially since it was in my size. The paint was pretty chipped up but there were no dings or dents. The fillet brazing was beautiful and I couldn't help but imagine it with a new paint job.
Status: Belongs to a Client
Made in England
Frame & Fork: Raleigh Industries 2030 High Carbon Steel Tubing
Sturmey-Archer 1960 Internal 3-Speed rear hub and 1959 front dyno hub (original had 1955 3-speed rear hub with dyno)
One day my good friend, Rob, mentioned that he had an old Raleigh and wondered if I could restore it. His Dad bought the bicycle soon after returning from the Korean War and not long after Rob was born in 1951. He rode it in the 1950’s and Rob's earliest memory of the bike was when he would have been around five years old. Rob's Dad was a career military man, a Brigadier General in the Canadian Army when he retired. He was the Commander of Camp Gagetown in New Brunswick and then was transferred to Vancouver as the BC area commander. That was in the early 1960’s and around then Rob inherited his Dad’s bicycle and through his teen years rode that bike all around Vancouver. In his late teens, Rob upgraded to a 10 speed that was a lot more efficient for riding to work and back. That bike was a Flandria and was a big step up from the old three speed. Rob hung on to the old three speed and brought it to Wells, BC with him where he spent eleven years. Towards the end of his time there Rob moved on to a mountain bike. His brother-in-law, who also lived in Wells for a time, was without a bike so Rob gave him the old three speed. He rode it for a few years then gave it back to Rob when he moved. The Raleigh was pretty worn and tired at this point but Rob hung on to it. Finally at his home in Kelowna, Rob thought the Raleigh had reached its end and he turned it into a garden ornament. His wife Shari planted a rose bush in front of it and it looked quite lovely. Shari stayed in the house after they separated and after a few years the old garage was in very rough shape and had to go. The bike and rose bush were against the wall of this garage so Shari transplanted the rose bush and she asked Rob if he wanted the bike back. At this point Rob had seen a few of the bikes I had restored and that’s when he approached me and asked me if there was any hope for this bike. The bike was unrideable. The handlebars were seized perpendicular to their appropriate position, the chain was rusted solid, the wheels had disintegrated and it was completely covered in rust. It looked like it was ready for the scrap metal bin. I told him that if I could get it apart and if the seat post and bottom bracket weren't seized, it might have potential. I really wanted to bring this important part of Rob's history back to its former glory so I agreed to take on the project.
It typically takes me 20 min or less to disassemble a bike. This one took nine hours! Almost all the parts had to be cut off the bike with a grinder or hacksaw because they were rusted solid. The bottom bracket, seat post and handlebar were all seized in the frame and took many hours to finally get out of there. Most of the parts weren't reusable so I started looking for a parts bike. I found a 1960 Raleigh in Oakland, California, only a few blocks from my aunt's house where I was visiting last fall. It was also in rough shape, with lots of rust, but at least things moved. Between the two bikes, I was able to get enough parts to put this one together. Every single bolt, washer, nut and part had to be polished to remove rust. There were complications all along the way and I thought about giving up many times. Nothing went together easily and everything took 10x longer than it should have. For example, I couldn't find bulbs that would work for these 1950s bicycle lights. I ended up replacing all the wiring and using LED lights in place of the bulbs. They look vintage on the outside but they're modern on the inside. The bottom bracket usually takes only a few minutes to install. This one took many hours as the original was too rusty, the parts one had a bent spindle, the threads were so rusty the cups wouldn't thread in enough to snug up the bearings, a new one I ordered was a few mm out and didn't work with the chain guard, etc. At one point, I had the bike all together and it looked great but the rear brake, rear hub and bottom bracket wouldn't work properly and the chain wouldn't align properly. I wanted it to look nice but it needed to work well, too. After many frustrating days, bloody knuckles, broken tools, and lost sleep, I finally got it not only looking great but working well, too. Would I do it again? Let's just say this is the last time I take on the restoration of a garden ornament. Do I regret it? Not one bit! The look on Rob's face made it all worth while!
Status: Not for Sale (Wife's Bike)
Frame: Miyata Triple Butted Cr-Mo Tubing
Fork: Manga Light Manganese Steel
Groupset: Shimano Deore XT (3x9 speed)
My wife bought this bike in the fall of 1987 for a trip down the west coast of Canada and the USA from Vancouver to San Diego in March of 1988. I was riding my bike down the west coast as well and met her and her friends on the Coho Ferry while sailing from Victoria, British Columbia to Port Angeles, Washington. Two years later we were married.
She's had a couple other bikes since but she always goes back to this one. When the groupset wore out I turned it into a single speed. As she got older, the drop bars came off and mtb style went on. I built it into this set-up in the summer of 2022 so she could go bikepacking with me. I decided that it needed a fresh paint job over the winter so it would be ready for another 35 years of riding. Unfortunately, at this time, these are the only pictures I have from before the new paint and current build.
This Miyata has had a new lease on life. It's ready to go for another 35 years. The paint turned out amazing and the groupset works perfectly. The Shimano wheelset I found was the perfect addition as well as the silver and red matched perfectly. Cindy loves this bike. It's beautiful to look at and rides comfortably. Now, I just need to get her to go on a bikepacking trip with me!