MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

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

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

MONTEREY SL - INTRO

FINDING THE MONTEREY SL

BUILD & RIDE THE SL

 

BICYCLES OF CANADA

 

FINDING THE MONTEREY SL

Each Autumn, around the Canadian Thanksgiving Weekend, Bicycles for Humanity (B4H), in Thunder Bay, hosts a Bicycle Donation Days Drive.  That drive is a focused effort to invite people in Thunder Bay to donate their unwanted bicycles to the B4H endeavour.  It is not unusual to get between two and four hundred old bicycles, and some not so old, in a very short span of time.  And, roughly twenty percent of the bicycle donated, the old Ten Speeds, roadsters and antiques, will never be Africa bound since they are inappropriate for use in Third World riding conditions.  What to do with all those bikes and there are about 200 of them donated or salvaged from the Dump, each year?

There was a time when B4H did not even accept the older bicycles.  The people running the organization, at the time, did not know how to make use of them.  That has changed, dramatically, in Thunder Bay now that a use has been determined and found to be most beneficial to the program, people in need and Mother Earth, herself.

Today, older bicycles, including old road bicycles, are either refurbished and sold back to people in Thunder Bay at an annual Yard Sale hosted by Lakehead University's Student Union.  Old bikes are refurbished by B4H trained mechanics and then sold, each Fall, to the incoming students, and anyone else for that matter.  The proceeds of sales like this are put towards the purchase of a shipping container and shipping costs associated with sending 500+ bicycles across the ocean to Africa.

On the very first evening, of the drop off times for the 2011 drive, this old Norco presented itself, in the back of a mini-van and laying underneath a CCM entry level mountain bicycle.  The fellow offering the two bicycles was of smaller stature and had to be in his late seventies or early eighties.

While a couple of younger B4H volunteers, carefully removed the bicycles from the old fella's van, the owner of the bikes told a wee bit about the history of both.  The long story, made short, is that he did not ride the road bicycle nearly as much as he did the mountain bike.  And the condition of the Norco would tend to bear out his "little used" story.

The Norco was is great shape, showing very little evidence of use.  The front wheel rim's braking surface was all but unmarked and the rear showed only hints of gently use.  A closer look would reveal that the brake pads, both front and back, were as new, or darn close to it.  And, the white hoods were, for the most part clean, once again suggesting little use.

The wear on the alloy crank rings also pointed to minimal use, showing little wear on either of the two sprockets.  The MKS pedals also showed little evidence of wear, with just a bit of paint worn off of the platforms, and some lay down storage scuffs on the dust caps.  There were no straps attached to the pedals, suggesting that the previous owner was not into spinning, but preferred to pedal the bicycle.  Pedaling, of course, suggests a rider who was more recreational than anything else.

The saddle height and position would also suggest recreational riding.  The steering stem was much to high and the saddle much to low, two situations indicating that the previous owner knew little about setting up bicycle fit, and even less about how to ride a road bicycle.  Put another way, the previous owner must have found the bike to be uncomfortable to ride.  So, he rode it little, allowing a thirty year old bicycle to reach today in near new condition.

The bicycle, itself, was somewhat dirty, sporting a patina of dried dust, some of which had mixed with the grease residue that sometimes finds itself around wheel and bottom bracket bearing cavities.  This is both a good and bad sign.  Good - there is grease in the cavity.  Bad - the owner did not care enough about the bicycle to keep it clean.

The alloy components had suffered slightly at the passing of time and sported a patina of surface oxidation.  A wee bit of elbow grease, applied with a small brass bristle brush, proved to best the oxidised material in short order, suggesting that the bicycle would clean up very nicely.  Painted surface would need only a decent cleaning to bring back showroom glory.

The saddle sported cosmetic blemishes but no rips or ugly scuffs, which are hugely common on older saddles.  The saddle also showed little or no evidence of wear, once again supporting the little used theory.  And, it was nice to see an original Norco saddle bag nestled beneath the original saddle.

A second accessory feature, but one for aesthetics only, would be the original water bottle.  Original, you bet.  Would someone else want to actually use it for its intended purpose?  Perhaps not.  But it does look nice sitting in its holder and all but color coordinated with the bicycle itself.

The original handlebar tape and rubber hoods were both clean and wear free.  The hoods, themselves, were unripped and relatively clean, once again sporting dried dust contaminating their surfaces.  Another easy clean up chore that could be address with a bit of soapy water and some light scrubbing.

All in all, the Norco Monterey was in great shape probably needing little more than a good cleaning, and possibly a decent tuning up.  Time would soon tell as the bicycle was put into the work stand.

NEXT - BUILD & RIDE THE MONTEREY SL

 

 

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

mail@mytenspeeds.com

COPYRIGHT(2008): mytenspeeds.com