[CR]An English Bike

Example: Racing:Jean Robic

From: <greenjersey@ntlworld.com>
To: <Classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Date: Sat, 14 Jan 2006 21:38:29 +0000
Subject: [CR]An English Bike

The recent discussion about the alleged sin of putting non-Italian stuff on a classic Italian frame got me thinking about English bikes. My first decent bike bought S/H in 1959 was all english, airlite hubs/constrictor rims, steel Williams chainset, benelux gears GB bars and stem etc but as soon as I started work and got some money that changed. As far as I can recall clubmen didn't care tuppence where there equipment was made it was a question of what took your fancy and what you could afford. 99% of frames were English usually from a local builder but I recall a friend buying a Cinelli frame and fitting a juy 543 gear. Absolutely nobody would have thought it odd to build Weinmann rims rather than Fiamme onto Campag hubs. However from 1961 to 1965 we went Italian big time. A friend went each year to a training camp in Menton and came back loaded down with equipment bought over the border in Italy. Prices were about one third of UK prices. Regina block 7/6p instead of 21/-. campione del Mondo silks 27/6 instead of £3.15.0d. All the racers in my club were on Campag pedals for the same price as Brampton B8. I didn't understand the economics of it then and I still don't but it was good while it lasted. Prices in French bike shops were the same as UK so how did they sell anything? To go back to my first point you can put anything you like on an English frame and it will be absolutely "correct". Ray Green, Brighton, England.

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