[CR]originality vs rideability

Example: Framebuilders:Masi

From: "peter naiman" <hetchinspete@hotmail.com>
To: classicrendezvous@bikelist.org
Date: Sat, 05 Jan 2002 05:01:18
Subject: [CR]originality vs rideability

I recently purchased a 1955 Hetchins Magnum Opus Phase 2 from the UK, the bike is stunning with a very fine repaint and rechrome. The decals are not quite right as the seat tube decal is a 1952 Coronation. The jpgs sent to me were somewhat in detail, so I went ahead with the purchase. Upon receiving it, I noticed the the rear dropouts were not right. They are shortreach horizontal Campag from post 1975. Also, the derailleur tab had been cut of prior to rechroming. A proper derailleur hangar from the era cannot be fitted, as the dropout is to short. The seller has offered to either take the cycle back or make good financially on the repair cost. I've decided to give to Bike to Peter Mooney to have a tab brazed on and have the hangar painted to match the frame colour. The MO will be built with a mostly 1969 Campag NR group, but with a very nice NOS highflange HI-E wheelset. Fully built as a "Custom Bike" this will be a real head turner. I wrote flash of the Hetchins Site and the following was his reply. I'd like other opinions as well. Hetchinspete Alias Peter Naiman Boston, Mass
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Peter, The 'purist' old-timer autmobile scene probably thinks that the hot rod scene does horrible things to Model A Fords, but I've seen some stunning hot rods. Owning a vintage bicycle, Hetchins or otherwise, sooner or later raises the issue of originality vs rideability. To keep an old-timer in absolutely original condition is laudable and, for the sake of future generations, highly valuable as a piece of historical evidence. On the other hand, if you want to ride it, you have to admit that 1950s brakes just aren't safe on the road anymore. If someone ahead of you with dual pivots slams on his brakes, and you have spongy old Universals or Mafac Racers, you will likely ram into him and bung up both bikes. I understand and appreciate both points of view. As a dedicated fence-sitter myself, I have both variations in my Hetcins stable. I have 3 in as original a condition as possible (modern 27" rims, couldn't find any old Fiamme Red Labels in decent condition), and two in slightly modernized condition (indexed gears, dual pivot brakes) for riding and showing off and turning heads and so on.

Now, getting back to your bike, I find it curious that the previous
>owner had the derailleur tab filed off. Did he run a fixed gear on it?
>Fixed-gear people are a breed apart (Andrew Moore, Sheldon Brown, et al).
>Have you considered keeping the bike in fixed-gear trim? It's not as though
>you don't have enuf other bikes to hang NOS Campy stuff on, right?
>Re-brazing a filed-off tab onto the dropout may bugger the chrome on the
>chainstay, due to the re-heating. Do you want to risk that?

As a 'hot rod' show bike, I'd say anything is permitted. Since the triangle has been altered anyway, it will never be an original condition bike, so go for it, I say! Make it the best damned head turner at the show. But document everything you do to it, otherwise some future curator of the Historic Hetchins web site is going to have nightmares trying to figure out what it is.

Flash http://www.hetchins.org