MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

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MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

NORCO MAGNUM GT - INTRO

FINDING THE MAGNUM GT

BUILDING THE MAGNUM GT

RIDING THE MAGNUM GT

 

BICYCLES OF CANADA

 

FINDING THE NORCO MAGNUM GT

On weekends, in Thunder Bay, there is a very small Yard Sale Window of Opportunity that opens up.  Generally, Yard Sales will begin around eight o'clock in the morning and be all done by two in the afternoon.  This is not a great deal of time to check out all of the sales.

In the heat of Thunder Bay's Yard Sale season, there might be as many as 200 sales, listed in Friday afternoon's news paper classified section.  Since the sales are offered for such a short period of time, I have learned to plan a Yard Sale Route, in an effort to optimize the use of, both gasoline and time.

My plan includes making myself up a route sheet, or a list of addresses, coupled with pertinent information about the sale in question.  I set the sheet of paper up, in a logical order, that allows me to check out as many opportunities, as I can, in the predetermined period of time.

It was while following one such Yard Sale Route List that I stumbled, if that is even the right word anymore, upon this near mint, eighties something, Norco Magnum Gran Touring road bike.  And it was my size!

For what ever reason, I was in the Ranger the morning I found the Norco.  The morning was waning as noon hour approached.  Though I had been to the end of Strathcona Street on many occasions, the address listed in the newspaper did not ring a bell.  That's right, I have Yard Saled so many times that I can, often times, recognize addresses, from one week/month/year to the next.

At any rate, I pulled up to the target address and, sure enough, there was a Yard Sale in full swing, but no bicycles present.  None the less, I was lucky enough to get a parking spot right in front of the house and I jumped out of the Ranger, for a quick peek around.  And that quick peek would include asking at least one very important question when it comes to finding vintage bicycles.  The question...

"Do you have an old bicycle you would like to sell?"  Not rocket surgery, that's for sure.  However, you will be amazed at how often that simple question produces an old bicycle and usually for a very low price.  Anyway...

Nothing of interest caught my eye as I tried to figure out who was running the sale.  Though it may seem chauvinistic, I try to present my question directly to a male, if one is present and helping with the sale.  In this case, the seller was pretty easy to spot since he, and his wife, both had coin pouch belts on.

I was just about to head for the guy with the pouch when he targeted me.  He walked up, made mention of the magnetic sign on the side of my truck and asked if he could give me a couple of old bicycles that he had been thinking of donating to the Bicycles for Humanity cause.

Now, normally, I try to avoid picking up B4H bicycles on Yard Sale day.  If I do get lucky, and find a decent old road bicycle, I do not want to have to load it into my truck with a bunch of department store, used and abused, Mountain Bikes.  But, it was close to the end of the day and I was, pretty much, at the end of the planned Yard Sale List.  Why not?

I asked if he needed any help collecting the bicycles, and he invited me to follow him into the back yard.  The garage door already stood wide open and I could see an old mountain bicycle sitting in clear view.  Actually, the bike I could see was not all that old, being a full suspension Raleigh something or other.  Not really the kind of bicycle that B4H seeks, but a nice bike, none the less and certainly worth dropping off at the storage facility on my way home.  Back to the bike...

The fellow hosting the Yard Sale pushed the Raleigh out to me, then returned to the comparative gloom of the double garage.  Moments late, he pushed this dusty but absolutely gorgeous old road bicycle out, into the sunshine.  Though anything buy shiny, I could see at a glance this one was worth a second look.

Before I could even say a word, the fellow swung the bike so that I could have a good look at the full right side.  He commented that he had bought the bicycle a long time ago, and rarely used it.  He also mentioned that he was aware that these old Ten Speeds were not appropriate bicycles to send for use in Africa.  To that he added that he knew I was a collector and he wanted to give the bicycle to me as reward for my volunteer service.

Needless to say, I was a bit taken aback.  I was pretty impressed and thanked him for his generosity, indicating that I felt a bit awkward about accepting the bicycle in such a fashion.  He said, OK, he would keep the bike and my heart fell.

He chuckled and offered to help me load both bicycles into the Ranger.  Whew!

NEXT - BUILDING THE NORCO MAGNUM GT

 

 

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