A couple of days, Steve Chambers outed to the List a Geliano frame that is currently on sale on UK Ebay.
As Steve stated, I was very much involved with introducing this French-m ade marque to the UK..starting, I think, in 1983.
The Ebay frame is one that I remember very well..I mean how could anyone forget a frame with such loud decor...and the fact that it was built into a bike using a Miche grouset. all of whose components were finished in whit e..a bit like Shimano's Sante set.
The frame is not built from Reynolds 531, but from one of the Columbus r ange..somewhere in the middle..possibly Aelle "R". It represents the "amate ur course" element of the Geliano range from the late 80s..possibly very ea rly 90s.
It's quite a coincidence that this frame should turn up on Ebay just day s after I had spent quite a lot of time at Geliano's shop and depot at Arge nt-sur-Sauldre, about an hour south of Orleans. It is now in its third gene ration, with Franck Duret, the grandson of the founder, now in charge. The shop is a "must see" one if you are in that neighbourhood. Argent/Sauldrfe is a tiny town, dominated by retired people, but the shop is more innovativ e than almost any shop I have ever come across. The day I called in, Franck was taking orders from three septuagenarians, all of them very active "cyc lo-sportif" riders..for state-of-the-art carbon framed and equipped machine s.
IT was quite a sight for sore eyes to see the trio..each one of whom wor e one of those very wide and flat dark blue Breton berets..droolong over th e Geliano goodies and vying with each other for the deepest pair of carbon aero rims..and Tufo tubular-clincher tyres in matching colours. However eve n that sight was nothing compared with the one that met me, on a simi lar visit in May, when I was introduced to an 84-year-old "coureur" who had just treated himself to a new carbon machine as a birthday present.
Not content with the sculptured contours of the monocoque frame, this gu y was intent on entering a new era in his cycling life..so he was treating himself to the full Lycra treatment. Weighing in at about 50 kilograms and with less flesh on his bones than a second rate chicken leg, even the small est sizes of Lycra shorts and jerseys just hung on his meagre frame..and th e thick chamois lining of the shorts seemed to have a life of their o wn, having failed to wrap itself anywhere near the guy's behind.
Nevertheless, attired in his all stretch Geliano team gear, even down to the cotton cap, he bundled the clothes he had worn for the ride into the s hop, into a carrier bag and dumped them ceremoniously into the trash bin..a nd with great acclaim..and to some accompanying applause..he set out on the new bike to cover the first 16 kilometres of his new era of cycling...What a sight ..carbon and Lycra technology at the mercy of white-haired muscle.
Norris Lockley, Settle-sur-Ribble, UK
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