Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Vintage Road Bike in progress

I wanted to find a vintage road bike for my husband to ride for fun. He has a very sensible hybrid bike which he uses for year-round transportation (including through the harsh Canadian winter!). He also uses it to tow our kids in the Chariot. But, like lots of people he does like to go fast sometimes. I think it irks him that old men can pass him on the bike trail as his main bike is a total slug.

As I've mentioned before, he's a rather leggy and tall fellow so finding a bike to fit can be a challenge. So I was pretty happy to find a diamond in the rough on kijiji:

Whoa, I hear you say! To say it was a filthy mess was an understatement. But underneath all the grime there was a pretty good bike. Mieles are a Canadian bike company and used to be very high quality. This bike seems to be a mid-range, mid-eighties road bike designed for really going fast. Plus, the chrome forks really do it for me.

So what I did next was a huge learning curve for me and quite a lot of fun. I took almost everything off the frame - the pedals, crank etc. I then took out the bearings and cleaned and greased them. I also got to buy some cool tools, like a crank puller (I think this is the funniest name for a tool ever). I have also been spending way too much time at the bike shop (Rachel's husband's one, natch) watching them work and asking my stupid questions. The thing was so crusted with filth that I had to use a screwdriver to carve the old grease out of the nooks and crannies!

Anyway, it is almost done! Here is what it looked like a few days ago:

Quite an improvement, wouldn't you say? Since then i have added white bar tape. New brake hoods are on the way. But what I really need is a nice white vintage saddle for it.

Stay tuned for the next installment!