The story of the restoration of a 1950s classic bicycle for a Land's End – John O'Groats charity ride in aid of Alzheimer's Society
After ages messing about with the spacing of the hub and freewheel, I think I’ve managed to get the chainline more or less right, so that the drivetrain now works (sort of…).
And to prove it, here’s our first outing on the road. Just a few hundred metres, but it’s another bit of progress.
She is a lovely bike, with a lively frame, but it’s going to take a while for me to get used once again to a gear lever on the downtube and pedals with toeclips and straps.
But the biggest challenge is shifting the chain between the two front chainrings, using the Simplex Competition rod changer. It’s a very long way to reach down to get to the lever, which is also quite far back. I found it hard to keep control of the bike – and almost impossible to avoid a horrible grating noise when the chain shifts. That’s why they were called “clangers”.