Saturday, March 19, 2016

WA Historical Cycle Club display - March 2016

This year during the month of March the Museum of Perth in collaboration with the WA Historical Cycle Club are proudly presenting a display of Western Australian cycling treasures to the public. 

The display is being held in the city in Grand Lane that runs just off the Murray Street mall near Barrack Street. It's a great little laneway full of artistic treasures and street art.

As you enter the laneway and walk toward the display entrance there are images on the laneway walls by Tony Lendrum of Perth bike riders and their bikes. Each image is accompanied with a short story of the bicycle and its rider. The stories demonstrate that diversity in cycling is very broad and interest in cycling has gained popularity with a staggering pace. Here are a couple of the images....

The entrance to the display area is colourful and on entry you are greeted by friendly staff running a small stylish cafe.

Once inside the doorway the entry to the display is by a gold coin donation. The display area is very cosy and it has a small theatrette at the rear that rolls out a short film that focuses on the cycling culture in the worlds friendliest cycling city of Groningen in The Netherlands.

The main focus of the display however is on Western Australia's cycling history. There are a few vintage bicycles with info that connects them to the history of our state, and one of Steele Bishops time trial bikes from the early 1980's. Steele Bishop won the World Title for the 5000 metre Individual Pursuit in1983. The Kalamunda boy was inducted into the WA Hall of Champions in 1985.

Also on display is an 1874 penny farthing, a 1950 Hartley by Speedwell, and a 1905 "Guvnor" styled Armstrong path racer from Kalgoorlie.  

For me the most impressive bike is a 1957 Swansea (6 swan) track bike. This bike is an outstanding example of a Swansea track bike from the late 1950's. Swansea was a local Fremantle based bicycle company..... Fremantle of course is where the Swan (River) meets the sea, hence the company name. 

Here are a few images of the bikes on display.

1950 Hartley by Speedwell

1905 Armstrong

1957 Swansea - 6 swan
There are locally produced books for sale and other items of interest that I haven't covered. The display is open until Wednesday 6 April, 2016. 

Opening hours:   Monday - Friday: 9am - 3pm,   Saturday: 9am - 2pm.

Please come along, make a donation and enjoy the display.

Safe riding.

James @ PVC. 

Friday, March 4, 2016

Late 1990's De Rosa Nuovo Classico

De Rosa bicycle founder Ugo De Rosa was born on 27 January, 1934 in Milan, Italy. Ugo initially raced bicycles and then focused his talents on building bicycles.
De Rosa's passion for racing led him to study mechanics and engineering at a technical college, and after the war he opened his first shop and commenced the manufacture of racing bicycles. In 1958 he was asked by the famous cyclist Raphael Geminiani to build him a bike for the upcoming Giro Italia race.

After this, bikes built by Ugo De Rosa became a fixture in the professional European peloton of the 1960s. The Faema team was the first team to ride De Rosa frames. 
In 1969 De Rosa was approached by Gianni Motta, who engaged De Rosa as his frame builder and mechanic. De Rosa accepted the offer and became the bicycle supplier to Motta's professional cycling team. It was during this period that one of the greatest stars of cycling, Mr Eddy Merckx (you may have heard of him!) rode bicycles manufactured by De Rosa. 
De Rosa built some frames for Merckx around this time, but it was not until 1973 that their relationship was formalized and De Rosa became the official frame builder and mechanic for the Molteni team which Merckx captained. Merckx and his teammates won nearly all the major European races including the Tour De France, the Giro d'Italia, Milan San Remo and the World Championships. 
Since then the De Rosa company has continued to manufacture high quality steel framed bicycles. The two most notable steel frames are called the Neo Primato and the Nuovo Classico (New Classic). 
Here is a New Classic from the late 1990's, a beautifully crafted steel bicycle dripping with classic Campagnolo Chorus and Campagnolo Record parts, Mavic rims, and a San Marco Rolls saddle.

....another classic that stands alone given the history behind the De Rosa brand.

Safe riding.

James @ PVC