[CR]Re:Exceltoo now Ets Perrin and other stuff...

From: "Mark Stevens" <mountgerald@btopenworld.com>
To: <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
References: <MONKEYFOODTvupeJKD800004a10@monkeyfood.nt.phred.org>
Date: Sat, 14 Jan 2006 19:40:48 -0000
Subject: [CR]Re:Exceltoo now Ets Perrin and other stuff...

Norris et al. I have a Stronglight crankset, steel cottered five pin - a 49a? withte words stamped on the back; it looks like Verct - Perrin or Vergt - Perrin. I fact it could be \erct - Perrin its hard to make out. The stamp on the cranks says COMPETITION STRONGLIGHT(in oval) MARQUE DEPOSEE
   In regard to 'the gen' you gave on Exceltoo does this mean anything to you.
    I had a long talk with Alec Bird, the late Ken Bird's brother, the other night. He Knew Bill Philbrook very well and told me that Bill had had a shop in Forest Hill, on the Catford road. Now the south Circular. What I want to know is when Bill left Claud Butlers and went to Gillotts and then when he set up on his own before going to Gillingham. apparently Bill hated BOC and wouldnt use their gas because of the cylinder rental. So he used town gas and an old hoover motor to get the blown air. All his brazing was done this way. The workshop was a tip, the tea was brewed in a filthy saucepan over the brazing torch and brokne hacksaw blades were welded back together. Yet he produced some of the cleanest frames I have ever seen. He wasnt a Prima Donna either. Alec recalls him working at Clauds as an assembler. He also recalls the last day at Clauds when Claud himself called all the workers together and told them that he was bankrupt. He explained that rather than the taxman getting everything, the workers should help themselves to 'A couple of bikes each' and other bits and pieces as Claud could'nt afford to pay them. There must've been a near riot. Alec reckons it was the cashflow problem from the American market that caused thew downfall. I do know that Bill Gray and another old friend, Jim Burrows were employed by the creditors to finish off orders in hand.
    Another lovely titbit from another source; Claud had a picture of Sandy Holdsworth in his office. Great friends in the cycle trade. No Claud used to throw darts at it. And did you know that my first Hetchins was bought from the Man Who Fitted Claud Butlers Wooden Leg. Beat that for wierd provenance.
    Mark Stevens --in danger of rambling -- Evanton Scotland. Well what else do you do on a cold January evening