When I was told about this pair of Tom Bromwich bikes I was on my way up the A14 quicker than you can say Cantona for England Manager .
I collected both genuine late 78/9 machines from the original owners son in law . The only difference is that the mans is a 21 1/2″whilst the ladies is a 20″ sized frame . Both are in clean original condition . Chromed steel rims with a flip flop hub , 26.4 dia post so poss Reynolds tubing , nicklin cranks , huret mechanism and levers . Gents frame no is 2409 whilst the ladies is 432 .
As soon as I got them home I pumped up the tyres and just had to take them both for a little ride, they are both very smooth considering they have not been used for 10+ years .
Initial inspection revealed both machine would need all bearings to be stripped and cleaned with some fresh grease , the wheel rims will need a gentle bit of work with the wire wool to remove the light rusting and I should think new tyres will be required as the side walls are cracked .
Well, work started yesterday 23/07/16 on the ladies bike by stripping the bottom bracket down which all came apart an awful lot easier than I expected especially with my 50p car boot spanner , neither of the cups were seized and both came out easily and revealed a nice TDC 69 crank spindle with traces of dirty grease in the cups and on the bearings as to be expected. They look like they will clean up nicely .
Next job is to clean up the Nicklin crank and then refit the whole lot and move on to the headset . Before doing the wheel bearings and finishing off with some new cables and tyres if required .
A good friend of mine asked me “Do you test your bikes after you have done repairs on them ?”
Simple reply is yes I do, no matter what work I have done , my normal routine after acquiring a new bike to me is if it’s safe to ride then give it a gentle ride around the block and try and do an evaluation of what work is required .
I normally start with replacing the inner and outer brake cables where required along with gear cables , tyres , inner tubes , brake pads along with overhauling the bottom bracket and headsets and hub rearing and any truing up of wheels if required .
As the majority of bikes I sell come to me after not being used for a few years there are not many that don’t need all the above doing just to make them safe to ride never mind anything else . Once the work has been done the testing process begins with a couple of gentle loops of a 1.5 mile circuit any required adjustments or further repairs are done and the testing process continues . Once I am happy on these short loops I do slightly longer loops till I feel confident enough to tackle one of my normal 12 miles loops after a couple of these have been completed without any issues the bike then moves across in to my riding fleet where it will be used for any number of 25+ mile rides till I have covered at least 75 – 100 miles without any reliability issues .
During the above process I also make the decision if the bike is to be a keeper or not, if not it is given another clean and then put up for sale .
So as you can see the vast majority of bikes I sell really are ready for the next adventure with their new owner , some bikes are sold as projects for other people who enjoy tinkering with bikes to do what they want to .
W & E Pollard