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clubman

Member since Jun 2008 • Last active Mar 2021

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    I'm pretty sure Fixwheelnut is correct. I have a frame with a modern sealed square taper BB. When it came to me it had Shimano cranks, which I changed to Campag. The LH crank developed a dangerous looking crack from the pedal thread, so I replaced it with a Stronglight that happened to be in the parts bin. All these cranks fitted on the same spindle with no problems.

    Of course, you will need to have the correct length of spindle for whatever your set up is.

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    Anquetil still riding (and winning) on simplex push rod in 1961! I’m sure the pills helped.

    Sorry this should be a reply to Absurdbird.

    The reluctance of Simplex to abandon their pull chain design is an excellent example of French conservatism combined with rejection of ideas seen as 'foreign'. Their adherence to the Priority to the Right rule at road junctions is similar - but it's a rule that's so compromised with exceptions that it makes even less sense than it did originally. It's also strange that when Simplex finally did produce a parallelogram mech, they messed it up with Delrin. They shot themselves in the foot just at the wrong time and were unable to resist the Japanese challenge, so whatever dope Maitre Jacques took was effectively wasted so far as the French bike trade was concerned.

    What I would like to know is: how good or bad was the Juy 60, which I think was the final development. In the advertising drawings (Rebour) they certainly look as though they would be better than the earlier versions, not least because they look robust enough to survive the bike falling over on its right hand side. I have the impression it was a disaster from the sales point of view - even though I was riding* when they came onto the market, the first one I actually saw was a couple of years ago at a Ripley jumble. Hilary Stone had two of them - he wanted £300 each which, considering the rarity, I suppose wasn't completely unreasonable. Interestingly Hilary told me they had been worth even more a few years before, but someone had turned up a little treasure trove of them, which had flooded the rather limited market.

    *N.B. I was very young at the time!

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    I guess that from about 1952 on nearly every pro would have chosen a Campag Gran Sport

    Strangely not.

    I don't think you read my post quite carefully enough. My point was that the pros would have chosen Campag if they could have done, but they were committed by their contracts to use whatever rubbish their sponsor chose. Nationalism was a strong factor, so if you were French you would have a huge struggle to use non French kit. If you look at that list you will see how effective this was before the Japanese kit arrived.

    One notable exception was Coppi, who caused a big stir in 1949 by insisting on using Simplex for the 1949 TdF, which he won. Tullio was very annoyed with him because he thought Coppi should use his Cambio Corsa which Bartali had won with the previous year - of course, Coppi did not have the same power of prayer behind him that Bartali had enjoyed!

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    The eBay Gillott, what’s the score with the big Gillott lettering on the downtube?

    Here's my take on block lettering as opposed to signature style transfers.

    I'm sure we all know that in the past the cycling authorities were often very strict with amateur rules - Marcel Planes* was effectively banned for life for accepting a few shillings from Hutchinson tyres for a testimonial he gave them. There was a longstanding rule that published photographs of amateurs must not show a legible frame maker's name - hence the desire by makers to show their name by other means, e.g. Bates Diadrent forks. Signature style transfers were acceptable.

    This all began to break down from the fifties onwards, although it was a long drawn out process - I seem to remember even into the seventies there were some people who were obliged to tape over trade names on clothing. How does this affect block letter transfers? Well I suppose if you were an aspiring amateur buying a new frame you had a choice between wanting to look as if you were a sufficiently notable amateur to get your picture in Cycling, or cutting straight to the chase and trying to look like a pro from day one.

    So the style of lettering may not tell you much about the age of the frame, but more about the attitude of the person who specified it.

    • If you don't know about Marcel, google him.
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    Nest. Somehow I thought it'd be older

    Nest? Could you explain?

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    The Juy 51 claims 26t

    If you can find a 26 sprocket I'll certainly be interested to hear how well it works.

    I find these old derailleurs intriguing, I suppose because they were heavily advertised but didn't really work very well and yet big races were won using them. I guess that from about 1952 on nearly every pro would have chosen a Campag Gran Sport, but of course they didn't get to choose their kit ( they still don't!)

    Johnny Pound (see Gillott thread) told me that he chose to use a Huret when he was in Belgium in the early fifties because he thought it was more 'robust' (his word) than a Simplex. They both look equally flimsy to me, but Mr. Pound generally knows what he's talking about.

    Anyway, if I had unlimited energy and (now, it seems) money, I'd love to experiment with these old mechs to see how well I could get them to work.

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    I believe the frame number is 59306, so it's a 1959 frame - probably the one on which he got that third place in the championsip RR.

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    I still hang on to fixedwheel in a curmudgeonly retro-grouch way.

    Quite right too!

    I think the origin of the term must come from the days of the introduction of the free wheel - - before that everything was fixed, and there were just 'ordinaries' and 'safeties', so it's inappropriate to think the term 'fixed' refers to a lack of variable gears. In any case, fixed gear is not a good description since you can usually turn the wheel round onto that other sprocket.

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    I wanted to make sure the pic would load before I did a lot of typing.

    This frame was built for Johnny Pound (JP) who is the seller. Although JP was a leading roadman in the fifties there's surprisingly little about him on the internet. He served an 'apprenticeship' in Belgium in the early fifties, rode the Peace Race in 1955 (British team) and came third in the National Road Championship in 1959, but I know he had a lot of RR victories, probably some on this frame - the net knows nothing of these.

    JP is more interesting as a person than his bike frame. You've probably worked out that he's not young - I'm not sure of his exact age, but he can't be far short of ninety, so you're probably assuming that at best he's reduced to an electric bike - not at all! In fact this frame has turned up because he's acquired another Gillot and wanted to use the handlebar stem that was in this one on his next project. Apparently JP did some design work for Gerry Burgess (GB Components) and I believe this stem was a prototype of his design. The stem was jammed and the forks, which were not original and got destroyed in the removal process.

    I rode with JP once or twice about six years ago and I can certainly say he was going very well then. On one occasion I felt I was on a good day and tried to ride him off my wheel - when I pulled into the Pub car park confident I was on my own I looked round and there he was, smiling in a way that rather implied he was too polite to outsprint me!

    The frame is in Chobham, Surrey and will have to be collected. I think it will have to wait until all the old codgers concerned have had their vaccine booster. I should add this is not really an attempt to make money, more an effort to keep this old frame in use for sentimental reasons.

    Before you get too enthusiastic, remember this frame has had a hard life and you will probably need to get new forks made for it.

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    Here's something that may be of interest here:

    20.75" Gillott road frame, no forks, may need other repairs and certainly needs a respray.
    Second post to follow after the (rather poor) photo.

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