MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

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MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

1983 GARDIN - INTRO

FINDING THE 1983 GARDIN

BUILDING THE 1983 GARDIN

RIDING THE 1983 GARDIN

1983 GARDIN - COMPLETE

 

BICYCLES OF CANADA

 

  

1983 GARDIN SPECIAL ANNIVERSARY - INTRODUCTION

As a collector of Canadian made high end or limited issues vintage road racing bicycles, I am always on the lookout for a new better than the other one example of any given make.  Four Gardin bicycles have been considered as part of my personal collection, this gorgeous Anniversary model being the nicest of the bunch.  When this special issue Gardin Special came along, I could not believe my good fortune and immediately decided that it would replace the Team Issue model I had acquired several years earlier.

Gardin bicycles were built by a fellow called Joseph Gardin.  Joe did not actually build the bicycles, as I understand it.  Rather, he hired frame builders, both in Canada and Italy to produce his frame and fork sets.  According to some old timers, Gardin bicycles could be of poor or exceptional quality, depending on the bike.  The Gardin feature here is top draw and a gorgeous vintage road bike.

The Gardin bicycle achieved fame through the effort and competitive will of a fellow resident of my home town, Thunder Bay.  That young man's name was, and needless to say still is, Curt Harnett who, among other achievements in the sporting arena, managed to win three medals at the Olympic Games between 1984 and 1996.  Curt retired from competitive cycling shortly after his Bronze success in the ninety-six Olympics.  But he left his mark on Canadian cycling and thanks to his achievements, the Gardin bicycle will be more fondly remembered as a quality machine.  That said...

The Gardin bicycle had a predecessor - the Cambio Rino, Joe Gardin's first attempt at setting up a bicycle manufacturing shop.  Cambio Rino bicycles came in all levels - kinda junky, junky, pretty darn nice and then something exceptional.  I have been lucky enough to own several examples of Joe Gardin's early efforts, the most impressive of which would have to be a 198? Cambio Rino 2000 (best guess about vintage) and my late seventies or early eighties SP (I call it that because it bears no model name and it is full Columbus SP).  The 2000 now lives in Taiwan while the SP remains on call for a ride anytime I feel like taking it out for a spin.

I do not know when the name switch came into effect but best guess would have to be the early eighties.  The Cambio Rino died a sudden death and from the ashes rose the Gardin, that once again could be had in a variety of quality levels.  Though I have owned Gardins of all levels, the ones that tend to stick out in my mind include an eighties something Gardin TNT, a supposed Gardin Special, a supposed Gardin Team Issue and finally, the piece de resistance, this incredible Gardin Special which becomes even more special since it was built to honour Campagnolo's Fiftieth Anniversary.  Perhaps that is why there is an F pantographed into the fork crown.  At any rate, the bicycle was originally fitted with the Campy Anniversary Grouppo which has long since been scavenged by the second owner of the bike.

NEXT - FINDING THE GARDIN ANNIVERSARY

 

 

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