And a large , "attaboy" on this one too !!
I hope it's not TOO contradictory that I admire , and find charming , both the inexpensive products of faceless and nameless factory workers . . .
And my bicycles which were made by the hands of one , and only one , person .
I'm lucky enough to be the caretaker to both a Richard Sachs , and a Ron Cooper .
There is room in my heart to see the good things about , and to enjoy , my early 1970's Raleigh Grand Prix , and my Richard Sachs & Ron Cooper bicycles .
( although you may have to be willing to look at a few Raleigh Grand Prix bicycles from the 1970's , and maybe avoid some examples , and pick out the best - the good ones are good ! - no apologies needed ! :^)
( and I'm not ashamed of my Made-In-Holland , by Gazelle , Raleigh Grand Prix either !! - I know , I know , all of you Raleigh Grand Prix snobs out there may not feel it's "the real deal" . . . but put a blindfold on me and I swear I couldn't determine any difference in riding quality between a Holland-by-Gazelle Raleigh Grand Prix , and an England-by-Carlton Raleigh Grand Prix !! :^)
( of course , riding bicycles while wearing blindfolds is done only by trained professionals on closed courses , don't try this at home kids , your mileage may vary . . . :^)
In a message dated 6/5/2004 6:47:52 AM Eastern Daylight Time, Norris.Lockley@btopenworld.com writes:
<< .... twenty years on, we will be asking whether in fact these Italian frames were actually the "real deal" i.e. made in Italy. Globalization will have, already has, changed the sourcing of much that we now buy new. Over here in a Europe that is bursting out eastwards, with the ten new countries just added on, companies in the "old Europe" of the original EEC, are making haste to set up factories in those new European territories, where labour is cheap.
Near my home, in that ancient city of York, a producer of fine chocolates within the city walls, since 1649, has just announced the closure of the plant,, with the loss of around 700 jobs.. all future manufacturing to take place in Poland.
So it came as no surprise yesterday, when I read that the Italian company Nuova Cicli Conti e Ciocc srl Italia has transferred its activities to Poland.
Is that Ciocc.. the real deal? I mean .. is it an Italian one? >>
Thanks Norris, I always enjoy your viewpoint.
I think you have inadvertently hit on the whole purpose of the Classic Rendezvous... It is absolutely true that globalization and the modern effort is pushing society to make things we use as cheaply and anonymously as possible. Many of us, I think both here in the States and around the world, are trying to focus on and proclaim the value of bicycles made by people, identifiable people, who actually made things by their own hand!
People like you, Norris! I feel I know you a bit through this list and I think if you and I walked through a modern shopping mall, we would be hard pressed to find much of anything we could say was made by a particular identifiable individual person or group, that object in some way reflecting the skill or handwork unique to that group. On the other hand, I could own a bicycle frame that you yourself made, with your years of involvement with the craft, experience and presumable care in construction. You could tell me, "See that seat stay top eye? I like to file the tip just that way..."
I think I am safe in saying that the CR members do not necessarily place value in cheapness, speed of manufacture, lightness, flash, advertising promotion, availability, sponsored riders, but instead we "put our money on" craft, individualism, heritage, relationship with the company or builder, style, finesse, yes, even art! This is becoming harder to identify in our modern world, and while we are forced to live in it, we can still take a few moments of our harried to look back and hopefully a few more moments to support the "carriers of the flame."