Friday, April 04, 2008

An old friend comes home

In 1982, soon after I started building my own custom frames, I built a 58cm. frame that was somewhat of a showpiece. It was dark blue with lots of chrome.

I am pretty sure this was the frame I posed with in the Masi shop, and was used in one of my early ads. (Left.)

The frame was eventually sold to Bud’s Bike Store, in Claremont, California, and built up as a display model. This bike brought in many other orders, including this one built in 1983.

Then around 1984 this display model was sold, and bought by Lorin Youde. In his own words he told me, “I rode the heck out of it, then for some unknown reason, sold it in 1994.” He added, “Even my wife told me not to sell it, and it was not long after I realized I had made a big mistake.”

Lorin tried to fill the void with other bikes I had also built; he bought this John Howard two years ago.

Then he bought this Recherché in near new condition; it was the one I featured in this post.

Last year Lorin decided to track down the bike he sold. The person he sold it to had resold it, and the bike was in now Spokane, Washington. The new owner had just had knee surgery and so was willing to sell.

A price was negotiated, and the bike returned to it’s original owner at the end of last year. Lorin just sent me pictures. In an email he told me, “I replaced the 8 speed Dura Ace components with period correct Super Record and while not quite in pristine a condition as Chuck Schmidts' it still looks pretty good and is a pleasure to ride.”

Actually, I think the original paint looks pretty darn good for a bike that has “Had the heck ridden out of it.” There are more pictures here.


mander said...

That's hot.

Anonymous said...

The chrome looks brand new...what's the explanation? Absolutely beautiful.

Unknown said...

Stunning. Props to you both!

Anonymous said...

Wow it's a small world. My name is Rob and I worked at Pacific Coast Cycles in Carlsbad Ca, for about 10 years. I know Lauren as he has been a long time customer of the shop. I am now a Rep. in the bicycle industry in the northwest. A few months back I was in visiting one of my shops in Spokane and they had a Moulton in the workstand. I showed intrest in the bike and the owner said he got the bike from his brother and that the original owner was wanting it back, so he was packing it up to send to him. Well as you probably can guess it was the same bike pictured here. I just called my old boss and good friend Chuck and he confirmed that we sold the bike on consignment for Lauren to a guy in Carlsbad and that he sold it to his brother in Spokane. I am glad Lauren got his bike back.
Since I am typing and I have some time this morning I will tell you about a bike I have. When I started working at Chuck's shop he had a very good looking blue Fuso for sale. It was used but in very good shape (probably on consignment). One day a women came in and was intrested in the bike so I pulled down the bike inflated the tires to 100psi so she could test ride it. I took the bike on a quick spin to make sure it was ok for a test ride and came back and told the women that I really liked the way it rode. I am guessing she just thought I was just being a salesman. She rode it and liked it but left the shop without it. A couple days later I took it for another ride and well I fell in love with it. I talked with Chuck and a deal was made and I bought it. After a couple weeks the women called me to see if the bike was still there. I informed her that after I rode it that day that I liked it so much that I bought it. She seemed bummed. I rode that bike alot and really enjoyed it. Then one morning I was hit by a car while riding it. The downtube and fork got damaged. I had Russ D. replace the downtube and I got a new fork for it. The bike was always a little short in the top tube for me so i handed it down to my wife and she has been enjoying it for years. The poor thing now sits in a box waiting for the day it is called back into action. My wife now has a new Ti bike. Anybody reading this does not need to ask if we want to sell it because we don't. We would probably just have to track you down and buy it back after a few years just like Lauren did.
I would like to say hi to Lauren and Laurel. I often think of good customers like them alot and really miss the days of working in the shop.
I would also like to say to Dave that I really like your writing and am glad I found your blog. I also like your bikes.
Happy Trails

Anonymous said...

For prospective bicycle buyers,
An important difference between a quality 'Lugged Steel' bicycle frame versus ALL other chassis materials is it's innate ability to outlast the original rider!
Durability, Ergonomics, 'Ride Quality' and Weight DO matter!
(Working on observed negative aspects of this specific chassis material daily ...)

Grizzly Adam said...


Groover said...

It is a beautiful bike. And what a beautiful story, too.