MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

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MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

BEEKAY THREE WHEELER

1977 RALEIGH TOURIST

194? VICTORIA

FIFTIES? CCM ROADSTER

E-Z ROLL REGAL TRICYCLE

SEARS FROM AUSTRIA

WINDSOR WINCHESTER

 

ROADSTERS & TRADERS

 

19?? VICTORIA

Built in Victoriaville, Quebec, this is the first two speed roadster encountered, to date.  Though the bicycle looked to have been repainted, it was, none the less, in great "as found" shape.  About the only concern, when test ridden, was the inadequate seat post, which tended to swivel, as the bicycle was being ridden.

To be honest, the vintage of this old bicycle escapes me.  I know little about antique bicycles, unless they are of the racing bicycle gender.  With that in mind, is should be no surprise that the Victoria won't find permanent shelter in The Old Shed, but certainly a steed that might prove wonderfully useful for trading purposes.

These old, twenty eight inch wheelers are great to ride.  Though a bit tough to get going, once going, they feel a bit like a train.  Tons of inertia, suggests that the bicycle will just keep on rolling, with little effort on the part of the rider.  Who knows, this old roadster just might make its way to Loon Lake and become my gravel road bicycle, now that my Bianchi Volpe lives across the pond, in Spain.

The Victoria is, in fact a stolen bicycle and how I came by such a bike is an interesting story, in itself.

Sometime ago a guy in Toronto was convicted of something or other.  The guy went through the legal process and, during the course of those proceedings, approximately 2,500 stolen bicycles were seized by the Police.  At the end of the legal process, the bicycles had to be disposed of.

The decision was made, at the government level, that the bicycles would be divided up, and sent to people in need, in Ontario communities.  Three hundred of those bikes ended up, sitting in the grass, in Thunder Bay in the Spring of the year.

Upon hearing of this situation, my interest was immediately captured.  I went to talk to the people, responsible for distributing the bicycles, and offered to help, through the Bicycles for Humanity organization, of which I am a member.

Strangely, the lady in charge was a bit nervous, about hooking up with any other organization, but was happy to accept unofficial help.  With that in mind, I invited participation from other B4H volunteers, and three of us, spent the next three days going through bikes, in an effort to make as many road worthy, as we could.

As a reward for helping, each volunteer, including me, could choose a bike to keep for them selves.  And there were some pretty decent full suspension mountain bikes in the bunch - high enders.

At any rate, with the task completed, each of the other guys selected a bike.  My friend, Don, snapped up a lovely, and little used Gary Fisher.  Clayton, chose hybrid, Cannondale, as I recall.  And me...

Well, I have little use for another mountain bicycle.  Though useful steeds, riding, or working on them interests me little.  I mentioned this and asked if I could have an old, as I described it, Ten Speed.  I pointed out that, the bicycle I wanted, would be inappropriate to send to northern, and remote communities.  The result...

The lady told me to help myself to as many of those old Ten Speeds or Roadsters, as I wanted.  As far as she was concerned, they were of little value in today's mountain bicycle world.  With that in mind, I started setting possible candidates aside.

And one of the three, or four, old bikes I earned happened to be this nice old Victoria.

Again, I know little about the bicycle.  It suffers from a severe case of tractor technology.  The bicycle is sturdy and heavy.  It is tough to get rolling, but easy to keep going.  That's the inertia thing mentioned earlier.

All, in all, a neat old bicycle that might well prove valuable as trading stock, should the right old Ten Speed and the Victoria happen to cross paths.

Though the roadster style really does not do that much for me, I must admit I liked the details on the Victoria.  The two speed shifter and head badge, both reeking of vintage appeal, were quick to catch my eye.  Though the shifters, all decked out in brass, were vintage eye candy, they, coupled with the two speed internal geared rear hub worked just great.  I must admit that, with no tuning or adjustment what so ever, I was a bit surprised.

The rear hub was a Strumey Archer unit, fitted with a drum brake and bearing the date stamp - 48, suggesting the bicycle to be of late forties vintage.  Though there was a bit of oxidation, it looked like the hub would clean up just fine.  But the front hub points more directly to the bicycle's heritage than does the rear.

The front hub bears the name CCM, as does the crank set.  The Victoria, after all, was Canadian made and CCM supplied many of the components.  And, when one takes the time to look at frame set details, chances are the Victoria is really a CCM, something or other, in disguise.

As found, the saddle was long gone.  However, there were lots of old bicycles to select a butt perch from and one old Brooks B, something or other, offered itself up.  The Victoria was complete and sits in The Old Shed as this is being written.  However...

An online buyer has offered to purchase the Victoria and an old CCM Cleveland, that I have at my summer cottage.  Too bad.  I had plans to plant flowers in the Cleveland.

 

 

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