There are many stories about the SBDU and even more about Reynolds 753 tubing. Most of these stories travel the internet, changing and evolving each time they are told. Something as simple as which seat pin size should fit a 753 frame is one of those stories. It causes the most confusion and creates some of the longest discussions whenever it is raised. Everyone seems to have an opinion about what is right; few ever seem to agree. My latest addition, SB3800, means that I may now have a couple of frames that could finally settle the seat pin debate.
Is SB4059 ever going to be finished? The answer is probably no, but today I took another step closer when another piece of the puzzle slotted into place. I’ve had various sets of toe clips over the last 5 years but they have never been the period correct item. Period correct is what I am striving for with this build.
I’m frequently asked about the specification of TI-Raleigh’s team bikes. The most popular search terms I see on my blog stats and the most viewed blog posts relate to ‘specifications’. However, the question about specification isn’t an easy question to answer by any means! Professional teams, not just TI-Raleigh, had a range of kit they would use. Each race was different and each stage of each race was different. Different gear ratios were used, different derailleurs, different rims, different tubs, depending on the road surface, conditions and stage type. Each rider was also different. So how do you answer that question when there are so many variables?
This post gives me the opportunity to play with my favourite bike, my Team Pro 753 TI-Raleigh. I’ve built this bike as close to the only specification I’ve ever seen for the TI-Raleigh team. Hunting down the perfect quality parts has been an obsession for over 4 years. Last year I got to approx 95% of that team spec after I found some Sturmey Archer toe clips and straps. I think most people would be happy with that, but in the back of my mind, my OCD was shouting at me to finish the quest for 100% perfection.
Some things I set myself up to find for my bikes are extremely rare! Patience, and keeping one eye constantly on the internet, is the only way to secure these hard to find parts.
I now have a Facebook page! It’s just here… My TI-Raleigh SBDU I’m actually calling myself a blogger.
I think about and see lots of stuff I’d like to blog about but sometimes just don’t have the time to write anything; so I thought why not create a Facebook page?
One thing I’ve tried to combine with my blog is a comprehensive photographic record. I try to capture each build or every workshop task with the best photography I can do.
I’ve just realised that I have never detailed the build of this bike. I tried my best to recreate a build specification that was sent by Gerald O’Donovan to a customer in 1982.
I’m going to use a term that my 13 year old daughter Lauren uses… “Oh My Gosh!”, it’s finished! Christmas has come early, I have a complete Raleigh Team 753!!!!