[CR]TeamMotobecane or Gemini

(Example: Racing)

From: "Norris Lockley" <norris@norrislockley.wanadoo.co.uk>
To: <Classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Date: Wed, 21 Sep 2005 00:03:13 +0100
Subject: [CR]TeamMotobecane or Gemini

I'm not sure why just because Ocana is thought to have used a Gemini bike sprayed up as a Motobecane, it should be thought that this frame on Ebay is from Gemini's workshop.

It certainly appears to have been put together with a decent amount of skill andwith some attention to finishing off the lugwork, but I can't what else there is to mark the frame as an outstanding piece of craftsmanship. True the tapered and wrapped over top-eyes are nicely done...but no more so than thousands of other frames. I have a Motobecane of the same model but an earlier vintage...finished in dark flam ruby with black panels. It is a very well finished off frame but I have no reason to think that it is the work of a small up-market builder. most of these companies such as Motobecane, Peugeot, Mercier and no doubt Gitane had "Service de Course" sections in their factories where experienced frame-builders turned out good quality frames.

The only aspect of this frame that makes me think that it might not just any other SSC factory-built frame is the fork crown which, as far as I can detect is a "Milremo", probably bought from Bertin. My earlier Motobecane just has the generic Wagner with the chevrons on the top surface. I say Milremo, because I used to buy this model from Bertin's partner in business Ron Kitching, but possibly it went by amother name in the States. What I do know about these crowns though, is that they were very crudely forged and needed hours of filing and polishing to make them look presentable and ready for chrome-plating like the one on the Ebay frame. Presumably Motobecane's workshop would be tooled-up with air-powered linishers to make the job easier.

I have tried to get a better view of Ocana's bike's crown on some other shots I have of it, and it doesn't appear to be a Wagner one.

Norris Lockley..Settle UK