Re: [CR] Dawes


Example: Production Builders:Tonard

Date: Fri, 5 Feb 2010 07:36:51 -0500
From: Russ Fitzgerald <russfitzgerald@embarqmail.com>
To: <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Subject: Re: [CR] Dawes


I am the keeper and custodian of a Dawes Realmrider 4-speed, the bike that got me back into cycling in general and vintage bikes in particular. Mine is on the CR site under Dawes, where Dale has it listed as a generic roadster. It is anything but.

Most of the Realmriders came stock with drop bars and 4, 5, 8 or 10-speed derailleur setups. It's some sort of unnamed tubing that is better than gaspipe - the bike is suprisingly light and nimble, and rides more like a mid-grade 10-speed from the 70s than a 3-speed. Racelite lugs, the fancy torch headbadge, stamped Stallard dropouts (I think that's the pattern, anyway!), 42-in wheelbase, and a really comfy ride that still will get up and go when asked. It's a surprising machine.

Dawes goes back to the 20s, I think. If you search around via Google, there are some late '30s catalog scans out there - I want to say on a yahoo group, but I'm not certain, and I'm at work right now - but Dawes once offered a pretty wide range of bikes, including several classical fixed-gear, single-braked hot-rod bikes. Later, they offered a range that included the basic 26 x 1/38-in Sports with an AW as well as touring machines with Cyclo Benelux derailleurs. I'm sure they shrank steadily as the bottom dropped out of the bike market in the 50s in England, but they still turned out pretty decent machines. I keep waiting for a Galaxy or Super Galaxy in my size to turn up cheap, though I wouldn't turn my nose up at their old Atlantis or Echelon models, either.

Russ Fitzgerald
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA