My wheels

If you are what you ride, I am often in need of adjustment and repair. Wheeled history listed in order of acquisition. Asterisk indicates current possession.

20121120-215350.jpg

1960s
Child’s red wagon (stenciled with kids’ names by Dad)*

Unknown red tricycle

John Deere pedal tractor (babysitter backed over it and broke the body in half. Lesson: don’t let babysitters operate cars in driveways)

Unknown blue bicycle (16-inch solid tires and convertible top tube)

1966 Sears Hawthorne (red, coaster, 26-inch wheels, first bike repaired by me)

20121120-211844.jpg

1970s
1974 Collegiate (from Illinois Cycle, Peoria, Illinois, first derailleur-equipped bike, 5-speed, upright bars from Illinois Cycle, Peoria, Illinois)

1975 1977 Motobecane Grand Touring (first drop bars, from Competition Cycles, Peoria, Illinois, original Michelan Élan tires were flat prone)

1972 Motobecane Champion Team (bought used, orange, sew-up tires, replaced Campy rear derailleur with Sun Tour for much-improved shifting, installed chrome fork after exiting apex of corner at speed and dropping into plowed cornfield)

Schwinn 20-inch unicycle

Unknown giraffe unicycle (unbelievable cheap construction; never successfully ridden)

Assorted 1950s/60s Schwinn cruisers (with Bendix coasters, two-speed kickback hubs and one with a manual, cable-actuated Bendix two-speed hub)

Crescent road bike (converted into “sidecar-style” trike for high-school tricycle race against Joe Russell, later of Russell’s Cycling & Fitness Center, Washington, Illinois)

Big helmet. No cattle. 1984.

Big helmet. No cattle. 1984.

1979 Guercotti (painted in Florida by 10 Speed Imports, purchased through college bicycle co-op, Columbia, Missouri, later sold to Rocky Zahner, Madison, Wisconsin, rode 200 miles on 1983 Litchfield ride in 11 hours, 1 minute, after being dropped by 26-rider pack, including Lon Haldeman and Susan Notorangelo, through a flat S-turn after first [4-hour] century. Rode 247 miles between Peoria, Illinois, and Columbia, Missouri, in 17 hours. Won only USCF race, Category 4)

20121120-211355.jpg

1980s
Late 1960s Peugeot 4-speed (650B tires, drop bars with guiddonet levers, ridged steel rims ate Mafac catilever brake shoes with alarming regularity, college transportation)

Unknown single-speed (coaster brake, ex-Peace Corps, ever so slightly out-of-phase cranks, college transportation)

Raysport (track road bike from A-1 Bicycle Sales in St. Louis. I sold the frame to central Illinois rider Denny Tresenriter, who rode it as a fixed-gear bike before converting it to cyclocross and using it to win the 1987 Iowa State Cyclocross Championship in the Masters category. Somewhere along the way Denny painted the frame red–before he “scrunched the frame beyond repair” while crossing it.)

Trek 720 (steel frame touring bike from Vitesse Cycle Shop, Peoria Heights, Illinois. For a few years after I sold the 720, I’d see it on the Bob Galloway Memorial Amish Country Bicycle Tour in Arthur, Illinois. If the lady I sold it to reads this, could you contact me at bike writer cat at gmail dot com?)

swj-highwheelerKennedy Ordinary (high-wheeler made for me in Indiana, rode several years on PACRACC, a three-day newspaper-sponsored tour around Bloomington-Normal, Illinois. Later sold bike to buy Burley tandem)

IMG_0482Paisley tricycle (built for me in Ohio, repainted, originally had Phil Wood disc brake. Rebuilt in 2012/2013 after having the ends of the Higgins axles machined so the back wheels wouldn’t fall off in a corner)*

Recumbent tadpole tricycle (homemade with direct steering off the front kingpins; horse cart front hubs)

Raleigh 20-inch folder (first folder, rebuilt with alloy rims)

Blue Sky trailer

Mid-1970s Raleigh International (originally belonged to central Illinois’ 12,000-miles-a-year rider, Don Eberle. Added cantilever bosses, painted orange and converted to 3-speed Sturmey Archer hub)

Honda Kick n Go scooter (one of the ones that got away and then came back after Denny Tresenriter pointed out that his son, bodybuilder Jacob (posing at 3:40), had long outgrown it. Of course, with a maximum rider weight of 85 pounds, the scooter doesn’t fit me either, by a long shot)*

peoria-king-for-web1950s Peoria King (dealer-branded Schwinn; later sold, refinished by CycleArt in California and reassembled by me for Peoria telemarketer Charles Ruppman. I wonder whether his family still has it.)

Burley Duet tandem (first tandem, possibly first year of production. Homemade receiver-style stoker stem accepted 40mm SR stem. Sun Tour freewheels lost bearings three or four times during roof rack transport)

1990s
IMG_1159Trek 2300 (from Champaign Cycle, Champaign, Illinois, first non-ferrous frame, main triangle carbon fiber tubes glued to aluminum lugs and rear triangle. As of April 2014, set up with single-speed White Industries Eccentric Eno flip-flop hub, MKS Lambda pedals, Cinelli Giro bars and Nitto Dirt Drop stem)*

SIDE BY SIDEFisher mountain bike (from Vitesse Cycle Shop, Peoria Heights, Illinois, first mountain bike, single-gauge oversized steel frame; installed drop bars and Retroshift levers in March 2013. Main commuting machine)*

Strida (A-shaped folder; first belt-driven machine)

Trek T200 tandem (from Vitesse Cycle Shop, Peoria Heights, Illinois, steel frame, Phil Wood hubs)

Early Trek 820 (Tange Prestige tubing. Traded a bicycle computer for the bike, which was bent after the bicycle, stored behind the cab of a semi, had its rear triangle crushed when the truck turned)*

1960s Schwinn Racer (3 speed, picked up in Door County, Wisconsin.)

2000s
20130629-112004.jpgCo-Motion tandem (ordered through The Hub Bicycle Company, St. Louis, first disc brake of mine [if you don’t count the disastrous Phil Wood on the Paisley tricycle], V-brake, custom build with extended stoker top tube length; moved to bar-end shifters from original STI and then to Gevenalle shifters; switched from 170mm FSA cranks with external bearings to 165mm da Vinci cranks with square-taper FSA bottom brackets; new 40-hole rear wheel sports Velocity Dyad rim, Velocity 9-speed hub; running 32C Panaracer Pasela tires rather than original spec Continental Gatorskin 28C tires)*

Bianchi Pista (from Big Shark, St. Louis, track bike, added front brake)*

2010s
full size tikit2010 Bike Friday Model T tikit (third bicycle built in Eugene, Oregon, after the Burley and Co-Motion tandems. Ordered factory direct. More pictures and my notes on replacing the folding riser here)*

20131228-132117.jpgDahon Bullhead (from NYCeWheels, New York, last year of production)*

20121120-211618.jpg1972 Schwinn Sports Tourer (first fillet-brazed frame of mine, 22-inch, acquired without wheels)*

IMG_05201964 Schwinn Corvette 2-speed kickback (presented to me in 2013 by Erik Reader, who found the bike in the basement of a Peoria house he was renovating.)*

10 Responses to My wheels

  1. wow, you’ve got it bad. Thanks for visiting my blog. We both like the small wheels, though yours are a bit younger and a bit smaller than mine. What happened to that Raleigh from the 80s?

    • I built up alloy wheels for the Raleigh and wasn’t impressed with the results, probably because of the stiff, heavy tires I used. I’d like to give such a bike another go some day, but that particular machine has been lost to the dim halls of memory.

  2. echo says:

    This list is nothing short of impressive! I love your blue Schwinn. That’s my favorite color, and it’s just such a cool bike!

  3. Mr. CATSOE says:

    Pre-owned bikes are somewhat like pre-owned cars. We never realize the value until years later when they’re long gone. Nice list..!!

  4. jadenotes says:

    Nice Co-Motion!

    • Glad to read that your shop stepped in to bring your Co-Motion back to as-new condition. When you say the inner chainring snapped off, do you mean it broke, or that the bolts came loose?

  5. Jim DeSalvio says:

    Good to meet you today at Jamberry! Long live steel.

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