Monday, May 15, 2000

Hacks for the povo cyclist

This bike was donated to me by Iggy Ray, who must have figured that if he gave it away, he would be forced to pull finger on a titanium "Wilson" build he has been talking about for years. It came at about the time that I was thinking about doing L' Eroica, a vintage bike ride event which is now franchised around the world. We had our eye on the Japanese one.


It came with Mafac brakes and 27 inch Mavic rims on some silky smooth Sansin hubs. Ray bought it new in Paris in 1976. Its a Peugeot PX10. I think the wheels and crank were not original. The rear derailer was a crappy shimano that had been mounted on a "tapped" Simplex hanger.

I had a play with it, replaced the crank, after the left arm fell off while I was riding home on its first commute. I put an old Campy crank on it, and some 33mm Cyclocross tires, and rode it down the Transient trail in Polhill. I was very impressed with the brakes. I imagine the direct mount ones must be incredible, mine are just the cheaper centre mount variety

Mungo bars with the original 27 inch wheels.



 I got the frame powder-coated at Seaview, the finish is about a 7 out of 10. I got a sticker set from the UK, and a friend gave me a lovely Campagnolo Nuovo Record rear derailer and shifters.



I was about to learn that Italian Campag derailers don't fit on French Simplex drop-outs...


Shimano to the rescue in the form of an old Durace 8 speed rear derailer.

I installed my Brooks Swift titanium saddle on it, and splashed out on some faux leather tape from Ritchey.








   




The bike has a very relaxed feel. Its like a comfy armchair, especially with the Compass Barlow Pass tires on it.  They are actually about 33 mm wide and a lot faster than they look. I came across an old 8 speed 11-30 cluster that seems to work very well with the durace rear derailer. I got rid of the 54 tooth big ring at the front and replaced it with my only other compatible ring, a 49. I can now comfortably cross-chain if I need to and the 30 on the back matched to the old-school 42 little ring on the front is not too tall.