Thursday, March 19, 2009

RMM Gets His Shopper

After a 6 hour training ride, or even worse after a hotly contested race, the last thing that I want to do is throw the leg over a race geometry bicycle to get a cup coffee.  Many would argue that my bicycle stable was already full, but I knew that they were wrong.  Sure I already have: 

1.       Steel Independent Fabrication Crown Jewel for road racing

2.       Wilier for track racing

3.       A crappy Gary Fisher for mountain biking (soon to be replaced with a race worthy bike)

4.       An Igleheart for cyclocross

5.       Lugged steel Basso Loto for winter road training

6.       Team Fuji Fixed for urban/fixed riding

Missing from the list is the shopper, the coffee bike, the bike with the basket and the bell.  I have been craving the comfort of a slow, upright bicycle with a basket.  In fact, I posted about it a couple of weeks ago, hoping that my readers would keep their eyes open for me.  I got a few emails about super commuters with pedigrees, wooden fenders and fancy hubsets.  I was grateful for the effort, but I was looking for something simpler, heavier and more, well quaint.  Honestly, I wanted a British three speed.   The problem is that very few British 3 speed frames are big enough for me.

One day late last week, I walked into Cambridge Bicycle and Jason seemed especially happy to see me.   He said that he had a bike in the basement for me.  He brought me downstairs and showed me this gem.

It is exactly what I need and it fit perfectly.  Sure it is not British, but the hubset is. 

Highlights include:

Phil Wood Bottom Bracket

1972 Sturmey Archer 3 speed Hub (S3C) with coaster brake

Dia Compe center pull cantilever brakes

Sugino Cranks

Nitto Stem

MKS pedals

Continental Touring Tires (28c)

Fancy polished lugs


To get the bike on the road, I recabled the brakes and shifter, swapped out the handlebars for the pictured Wald steel bars and installed a basket and a ding ding bell.   With these improvements the bike runs flawlessly and is the perfect local errand bike. 

While I certainly am not fast or nimble on this bike, I have already been called “dapper”, “dignified” and “relaxed looking” while riding it.  That is a large improvement over the “depraved looking sweaty pig” comment that I got while on my fixy a couple of summers ago.   I am perfectly at home riding this bicycle in my tweed jacket while the leather patches on the elbows (you think that I am joking). 

If you have the opportunity to get a shopper, I highly recommend it.  

A special thank you to Kip, Bud and Jason at Cambridge Bicycle for setting this aside for me and making it affordable.  


Anonymous said...

the real highlight of this bike is the frame solid lugged steel! happy you like it o far...!!!, kip

Il Bruce said...

Very nice.

I am always on the look out for a similarly sized frame for this type of bike.

Well done.

RMM said...

II Bruce:

CB has another one of these bikes in the basement. Identical frame (came to the shop as a set)

That one is even nicer than mine, Phil Wood hubs.

I would be happy to hook you up with the right person if you are really interested.

Yash Katsumi said...

Yo. At Cambridge bicycles they have a used Selle San Marco Rolls with the No-Slip Embroidery. That is a cool saddle. If they still have it, I will buy it for $20.

pedalstrike said...

such a nice bike! i love the fenders and the basket is so perfect!

i've been debating getting a coffee cup holder for my bike. prob not appropriate...but so tempting!

nixie the mighty said...

hey i remember those bikes when they came in! real cool set ups! good catch rmm! hey yash i actually bought that saddle for $40 but don't use it. let a fellah know.

Il Bruce said...

Cambridge is a bit out of my way but it might give me the opportunity yo bribe by wife with brunch at Mary Chung.

What are the specifics on the bike?

Who to speak to etc?

RMM said...

You should speak to Bud at Cambridge about the other bike. When I looked at it a week ago, I noticed that it had a derailleur (didn't note the cassette size) and a funny upright stem (easily swapped out).

I don't have any more details.

Il Bruce said...


Yash Katsumi said...

I may need to buy that saddle young Nixie.

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