RE: [CR]'54 Algurn On the Road, Pics up

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From: "Mick Butler" <>
Subject: RE: [CR]'54 Algurn On the Road, Pics up
Date: Sun, 03 Jul 2005 10:03:26 +0000

Dear Tom, How wonderful to hear that the Algurn is being ridden again and more importantly being enjoyed and appreciated. The bike was originally built for all-round cycling by that I mean club riding, light touring and racing. By racing that's time trials, it was ridden in 10's, 25's, 50's and 100's. The original specification of this bicycle was: GB Steel Krono stem on Map of England Ventoux bars, Bartali levers with Weinmann side pulls, Chater-Lea Chainset, 5 speed Cyclo Benelux, Lyotard MB pedals, GB toe-clips, Brooks Swallow and clip on alloy pilllar, Fiamme sprints on Bayliss Willey continental hubs and Dunlop tubs. Algurn was located in Garrett Lane Tooting which is quite close to Maurice Selbachs grave in Streatham Cemetery. They were one of the finest London builders of their time, sadly now hardly known. If any CR member is looking for a classic British lightweight or component please contact me off list, I still ride a lot, more since I have been unemployed and have lots of useful contacts who might be able to help, plus it would releive the boredom of trying to find work. Please contact me off list and next time you are at one of your meets make a beeline for the Algurn you will be impressed.

Michael Butler Huntingdon UK.

>From: Thomas Adams <>
>To:,Steve Willis <>
>Subject: [CR]'54 Algurn On the Road, Pics up
>Date: Sat, 2 Jul 2005 09:17:15 -0700 (PDT)
>I picked up a lovely English frame this spring and finally got her on the
>road this weekend. The bike is a '54 Algurn Fleur d Lys, built at a time
>when Stuart Purves and Brian Packer were building at Algurn, so presumably
>it's their hands that formed the lugwork on this beauty. It perfectly
>embodies my ideal of fancy but not gaudy lugs. Look and see what you
>I don't know what it is about English bikes of this period, but this is the
>third I've got (along with the '57 Major Nichols and '49 Ephgrave), and I
>have to say they form the best riding "class" of bikes I have. The Algurn
>is splendidly well mannered, comfortable riding but not sluggish at all,
>she turns easily and allows you to adjust your line in mid turn with
>aplomb. I haven't been able to assess ultimate climbing ability, but
>powering up a few highway overpasses elicited no front derailleur rub or
>auto shifting or other bad manners. All in all a delightful competent
>machine on which it is a pleasure to glide down to road. Probably not the
>weapon of choice for TT's or tight circuit races, but ideally suited for
>the other 90% of real world riding.
>Even better, she came well patina'ed, indicating her previous owner put
>many thousands of miles on her, and now it's my turn to extend her life. I
>know everyone approaches this sport from a different direction, but the
>thought of saving a formerly beloved machine from the scrap heap and
>putting her back on the road makes me go all soft and mushy.
>Parts were a mixed lot of whatever I had around to get her on the road.
>The only interesting bits are some drillium levered extra long reach
>Universal 68's for "brakes" (their stopping power is like reversing props
>on the Queen Mary even with the aftermarket Koolstop pads) and a
>Stronglight 49 set of cranks in 175mm that have been waiting for a suitable
>home. Wheels are 1st gen Dura Ace laced to modern Mavic rims, and shifting
>chores are handled by a set of Huret Rival derailleurs generously donated
>by Steve Willis at the Bike Stand. The ubiquitous SR Laprade post holds
>the mandatory Brooks B17 for this application.
>The paint and decals are in reasonable shape, which is actually unlucky as
>it's making it hard for me to justify a repaint even though I'm not
>thrilled with the faded red finish (you can see the original shade where
>the 1st owner used tape to cushion any clamp on bits). On the one hand,
>I prefer original finishes (but not with the fervor of many) but then I
>imagine her with glossy blue paint and the lugs lined in gold to match the
>down tube logo --- . Decisions, decisions.
>Thanks to the many folks who contributed to this project, including
>especially Mick Butler and Steve Willis at the Bike Stand. Hope to see you
>folks on the road with "Ally" soon.
>Tom Adams, Shrewsbury NJ
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