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Can anybody help me indentify this bike?(6 posts)

Can anybody help me indentify this bike?desmo
Nov 11, 2002 11:49 AM
This neat old fixed gear road bike has been sitting in storage at my friends bike shop. Wondering if anyone could take a stab at what it is. The frame has been rattle canned red but the blue/orange stripe decals on the top tube look like they were masked off and may be original. The forged dropouts do have a der hanger, and an interesting looking "hook" on the non-drive side. The seatstay bridge is not drilled for a brake. The headtube is some sort of internal headset setup. There is a "P5" cast in the BB shell, and stamped with the numbers "404?????. It's a very cool old bike, I wish it were my size (or even close). It just reeks of some severe training rides of a bygone era. There's even an old flashlight holder on the handle bars. Any info would be appreciated. Cheers, Otis
re: Can anybody help me indentify this bike?wooglin
Nov 11, 2002 1:26 PM
Probably not the same manufacturer, but the seat cluster bears some similarity to the one pictured below from a 1933 Umberto Dei and the "integrated" headset at least suggests that era. The rest of the website is here:

Note: Not that I know this stuff off the top of my head, but an Umberto Dei was just asked about on the mtbr ss forum.
Rivendell stole that stem; rest looks like Home Depotretro
Nov 11, 2002 2:35 PM
No, it's a cool-looking old frame. I'd buy it in a second if it fit...but that stem looks very much like one Rivendell was selling until a few months ago, and the fasteners look like they came from Tru-Value. I'm not a bike historian at all, but just based on what I remember, I'd place it no later than early '60s, and possibly much earlier.
very interesting features but well before my time ...Spirito
Nov 11, 2002 11:18 PM
the lugs are a clue to what era and perhaps what manufacturer the frameset is from.

i however have no idea of what lugs these are but they are kinda close as mentioned above to umberto dei's and i think a little like some galmozzi's. i dont think its a junker frame as the rear drop outs are too interesting and it also looks like an FB 3 peice hub (but it may be labelled as simplex). just by hub alone i would place it from 1953 to 1958 but it may not be original and could well be an upgrade to an older frameset.

the headset is kinda english and it looks path racer-ish in its setup and without a rear brake. internal headtube headsets were quite common of years gone by.

whatever you do keep onto the bike and keep searching the componentry and markings. also clean it up a little and post some side on pics and some clearer ones of the parts. im guesing a little but the brake looks like an early Mafac.

it could well be that the frame is nondescript and of little value in the condition it is but then again you never know. ive seen some early 40's and 50's bikes and thought they were crude and ungainly before being informed that these bikes were infact the cutting edge rides of champions.

how big is it? what sort of wheels and tires? im baffled and curious at the same time.

keep us posted.

very interesting features but well before my time ...desmo
Nov 12, 2002 9:14 AM
Yeah, I need to get it over to my shop to clean it up a bit and take some better photos. You are right about the FB hubs, an no-name Mafac brake. Drive train is skip-tooth Charter-Lea. Rims are sew-up, it has a plastic Unicanitor saddle, and Lyotard steel track pedals. The story that goes with this is: The original owner had a spot on the US Olympic team (in we think the early 60's), but died of a freak heart attack while in training. Years later the guy's son brought this bike, a box of parts, and pristine early 60's Paramount into my friend's bike store. He sold him the fixie and box of parts and let him hang the Paramount on the wall, as it's a Schwinn store and he has some other vintage roadbikes on the display. The box of parts was mostly misc. tubes, bar tape, etc. but also a super rare Simplex 543 "Record" rear der. which we sold for an ungodly amount on ebay a couple of weeks ago. There is also a complete set of Follis frame decals, which may have been intended for this bike (but who knows). Not sure what we're going to with this bike. I'd love to restore it, but have this thing about not owning bikes I cannot ride. This sucker is just too big for me, damn it!
more (better?) photosdesmo
Nov 12, 2002 4:59 PM