Hello Gang ,
Been a while . Been a "lurker" for some time . It was basically just computer problems which I was "just about" to take care of , just any minute now .
Kept me from shooting off too many words from my keyboard . Cut down on the excess verbiage .
Sorry I missed the Cirque . It was almost my first year to attend . Thanks to everyone who took pictures and wrote memorable words ! It's fun to "virtually attend" . Guess that makes me an "e-attendee" .
Never did get around to actually introducing myself . Started to , several times . But , always just got too lengthy .
I've been interested in bicycles , since about the age of learning to walk . I've been really crazy about bicycles since perhaps the 6th or 7th grade , in school .
Been the manager of two different shops . One shop was a real small-town , ma & pa friendly , sort of place . Worked there , on and off , stop and start , with big gaps in between , circa 1977 - 1989 . The other shop was a real big-city , leading-edge-technology , kind of a place . It was housed in a trendy , yet friendly , big old house turned into commercial real estate , sort of location . That high-technology shop experience was 1983 - 1984 Austin , Texas .
Talked to Mr. John Howard , on the telephone , when he asked that we ship his custom Skip Hujsak , speed record attempt bicycle , to him . He took it to the Bonneville Salt Flats , and did indeed set a new World record . Sure did miss having that bicycle on the shop floor though . . .
Stood by and watched as the first North American C Record bicycle was assembled , for its North American debut . . . just the right place at the right time . Still have a link from its chain , and about a 2 cm long piece of its brake cable housing .
The truly bizarre thing was that I'd stood around and watched the same sort of process , for the totally new "S.I.S." "click-shifting" group , from Shimano ! And which one of the Stetina brothers was that ? And did those guys , from Shimano & Campagnolo , ever figure out that their two top-secret bicycles were actually assembled on the same work stand ??
Was briefly the "warehouse manager" at the exclusive North American importer for Tommasini , Zulo , Roval wheels , Marresi shoes , Pneudan tires , etc. , etc. , etc .
Shipped Roval wheels to at least one Olympic team ( I honestly think it might have been Jamaica ? ) .
I put the quotation marks around "warehouse manager" because that's what I was hired to do , but was never really allowed to do . . .
Uhhhhhmmmmm , it was an "educational" experience . Found out later that I had prevented the owner from bailing out the window and crashing the business . . . Gee , I'm a hero .
Except that another person or two had each been the reason he hadn't crashed the business , at earlier times . Yeah , that kind of heroism , and two bucks , will just about buy you a cup of coffee . . .
Was away from bicycles , for years at a time , at least a couple of times .
Still crazy about the Schwinns and the Raleighs that I dreamed of .
Still in awe of the fine works of the small producers .
Still in awe of the hand-made products of the "single-artist's-studio" , lone-workshops .
****Skinny Tire Bicycles -
**Have some Schwinns , of all three Made-In-U.S.A. frame-construction methods , used in the 1946 - 1979 era :
Lugged and silver brazed by hand Paramounts ( big THANKS to a list member ! ) ,
Fillet-brazed by hand "Chrome-Molybdenum" ( big THANKS to list members !! ) ,
And machine-made , mass-produced , "Electro-Forged" .
**Have some Raleighs , from Grand Prix & Super Course , up to a newly acquired Professional Track .
**Have my original 1972 Frejus Legnano , my highest personal mileage bicycle . Good estimate is that I've put over 35,000 miles on that one . I know that's not much for some folks . But it sounds like a lot to me .
**Have my wonderful late-1970's Ron Cooper custom "race-tour" . It is Ron Cooper Touring frame # 169 , but set up from the original ordering to be ultra light and fast .
**Have my incredibly beautiful and pristine c.1983 Richard Sachs .
And THANKS to list members ( BIG THANKS !! ) I have ;
** 3-speed derailleur "Ephgrave" bicycle , maybe not actually an Ephgrave
** 3-speed Sturmey Archer - Carlton Cycles bicycle
** fantastic , totally new , Bates frame-set ( advertisement here for those new Bates frame sets ! )
** most of a new-old-stock , Gitane Tour de France
** getting , soon , a Peugeot PX-10 , always wanted one of those
****Pleasantly-Plump Tire Bicycles
**Have Superbe Sports 4-Speeds from both Raleigh and Rudge
**Have the sad remains of a couple of 3-Speeds from Humber , love those four fork blades on each bicycle !
**Have 3-Speed Sturmey Archer equipped , diamond-framed , Schwinn
**Have Bendix Automatic Two Speeds from Schwinn , both diamond frame , and "Cantilever" frame
**Have the noble remains of a 1951 Schwinn Black Phantom , it had been stripped as much as it could be , and still function - so it's a light-weight "bobber" now !
**Have my 1893 Sterling , "Built Like A Watch" , near totally original , with 1893 tied-and-soldered straight-pull spokes !! New ideas are sometimes not so new .
**Have a circa 1910 Iver Johnson
**Have a circa 1925 Schwinn Racer
Well , I should close .
Just wanted to take time to say thank you , to our host and web-master , to the fine friends I've made on the list , and to those folks who have helped me to have so many wonderful 1.) Art Objects , 2.) History Lessons , or 3.) Toys - depending upon how you look at them . They are more than mere bicycles .
And if you're ever in Kansas City , be sure to stop in and say hi to someone I met mostly because of the C. R. List , Sarah Gibson , owner of Old Town Cyclery . Stop by sometime soon , before she disappears into the great wooded wilds of the North West corner of the U.S.A. !!!! And check out :
See you all , down the trail .
I consider myself to have now exchanged the ultra-secret , C. R. List handshake , with each and every one of you fine folks .