MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

SITE INDEX   FINDING   BICYCLES   WORK SHOP   TRADING   WHAT'S NEW?

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MIELE "17" - INTRO

FINDING THE MIELE "17"

THE MIELE "17" - BUILD ONE

THE MIELE"17" - BUILD TWO

RIDING THE MIELE "17"

 

BICYCLES OF CANADA

  

FINDING THE MIELE LTD

When I bought the Miele, I was not much different from most people who shop on-line for a vintage road bicycle.  I really didn't know all that much about shopping on-line.  What I did know was that I collect vintage high end Canadian road bicycles.  And, the Miele was a very rare, very high end vintage Canadian road bicycle.

The moment I saw Seventeen listed on Ebay, I decided that I was going to be the buyer - a dangerous mentality for a person shopping on Ebay.  The "I'm gonna buy it, no matter what attitude" will cost you a great deal of money, if you are not careful.  I was determined, not careful.  I paid a good dollar, for the bicycle, not too much mind you, but a good dollar none-the-less.

As the auction closed in on completion, I sat at my computer, refreshing the page every few seconds.  My highest bid would have been better than $100.00 more, than I would eventually pay for the bicycle.  Even though the price was considerable, I felt OK about the whole thing.  I sent a money order off for the bicycle, and waited.  And waited.  I contacted the seller, who was kind enough to offer, what I though to be, a sorry excuse for untimely shipping, at the time.  He did however promise to ship the bicycle shortly.  A few more days passed and finally, the bus line called.  They had a package there for me.

I honestly can't remember what I was doing, when the bus line rang me up.  I do know that the Ranger and I headed out immediately.  The drive, to the Grey Hound Bus terminal, was short and uneventful.  The Grey Hound attendant took the necessary information, from me, and then disappeared around the corner.  Once again, I waited.

When the fellow reappeared, with the my top of the line high end and probably rare Miele, I was horrified!  The seller had done a really stupid job of packing the bike up.  The suede leather saddle, handlebars and rear derailleur had all been left exposed.  That's right, these three items, though still attached to the bicycle, were purposely left sticking out of the box.

During the bus ride, from Toronto to Thunder Bay, the saddle had been badly scuffed up and, though useable, was certainly no longer presentable.  A different saddle would have to be found.  The beautiful Campagnolo brake levers had both suffered, from careless handling, during shipment.  One was bent and badly ggouged, while the other had just seen a bit of scuffing.  Finally and sadly, the Campagnolo C-Record, rear derailleur was broken in half!  Yes, busted clear through and absolutely useless.

I contacted the seller and, as politely as I could, expressed my dissatisfaction with the results of his packing.  After a couple of e-mails, he agreed to send me a spare rear derailleur, in an effort to make up for the damaged items.  Not the best solution, but at least something.  Well....

Weeks passed, then months and now years.  The seller never did make good on his word to replace the rear derailleur.  I got stung, in a sense, and will forever be wary of buying on-line.  That said, I do buy on-line, when something I really want, or need, comes along.  However, I am much better prepared to make a good purchase these days.  As, both, a buyer and a seller, I feel that I better understand what I am doing and, more importantly, what I need to do to avoid unpleasant on-line purchase surprises.

THE MIELE FRAME SET - SERIAL #17

The Miele's frame set, serial number 17, is a work of art and a joy to behold.  The overall presentation is simple and clean.  But that is only part of the story.

As for the aesthetics, one need only take the time to look at the flawless construction.  There are no assembly errors.  The silver soldered joints are clean and, all but perfect, in presentation.  There are no lumps of silver solder.  There are no file or casting marks on the lugs.  The stays and fork blades blend smoothly into the Campagnolo forged drops.  The overall appearance suggests nothing but craftsmanship.  The Miele was obviously built by someone who knew, and more cared about, what they were doing.

Though the tubing decal is all but missing, Seventeen is full Columbus SL, main tubes, stays and fork blades.  Chrome plated Campagnolo drops, complete a quality frame and fork set.  The lug work, though very plain, is extremely clean, and blends nicely, with the overall presentation of the bicycle.  I should add that this Miele is the only one I have ever seen, with fast back seat stays.

In all honesty, the Miele's frame set is not fancy.  It boarders on being plain, perhaps uncomplicated is a better word.  But in the bicycle's uncomplicated appearance, its real beauty is allowed to come out.  Nothing pulls your eye away from the bicycle itself.  It is like a painting, that will not allow the viewer to linger long on detail, always being pulled back to the whole.  And, that is a bit of a trick, in my opinion, since there are little things that should draw and hold one's attention.  Mr. Jim Miele's signature being the most evident.  I have not seen this on any other Miele.

My first build of the Miele was a straight forward affair.  There were, as mentioned, some components that did require changing, simply because they had been damaged during shipment.  I replaced, what I had to, with what ever I happened to have, on hand at the time.  Of course, I did try to keep the bicycle set up with a full Campagnolo grouppo.  However, the Campy components were miserably mismatched.

NEXT - FIRST BUILD OF THE MIELE "LTD"

 

 

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