I used to hate the Retro-Classic board on RBR. All those smug people with their amazing thrift store and dumpster finds really got to me. Until, over the weekend of the 4th, it finally happened. Kinda like the Penthouse forum.
I was camping with my parents in our hometown, and my friend had come out for the day to go exploring on the Elkhorn Creek. We were walking on the rocky shore when I saw it - the seductive lines of a classic cruiser hiding in the tree-line on the border of the shore. I couldn?t help but stare and think of how lucky I was to have found it. I hid it in a better location and came back for it the next day.
The bike is just gorgeous, a lugged steel cruiser with a step-through frame and gently curving, tapering fork. Although it's heavy, this weight shows its durability and williingness to stand up to abuse. It still has its headset, stem, BB, cranks, and chainring attached as a bonus!
Not only is it beautiful due to its clean and simple lines, it's quite sophisticated. The rear includes a technologically advanced "floating stay" that reduces weight and acts as a form of suspension, making the ride more comfortable. I'm pretty impressed with it so far...I wonder why it's not seen more often today. Who needs FSR?
The best part is hidden in the dropouts - I'm thinking this would be the perfect bike to turn into my first off-road fixie! This has to be one of the best overall bike designs I've ever run into.
Once I got the bike back home, I immediately took it out for pictures and a ride. I haven't cleaned it up much yet, but everything should polish up nicely. I especially like the chainring design. You can see the "floating stay" suspension system in the background.
Another view (West Side!):
Detail shot of the chainrings, showing lack of wear:
Close up of the innovative suspension, showing the small piece of chainstay put on for accessory mounting, such as cadence or speed sensors...how thoughtful:
These show the design work put into lightening the stem:
Then came time for the maiden voyage! I was excited to be riding such a wonderful piece of history - it felt like I'd stepped back in time. The ride wasn't bad due to the rear suspension, but the steering had some issues. Seat comfort also left something to be desired, too, so it'll be replaced.
Here's the first go around. The steering felt stiff at first, causing me to nearly run into a metal container. Oops!
Next I took it on some sweet local trails I found. This thing really carves the corners!
Uh oh, watch out! The trail led to some nice technical climbs, which I attempted to ascend. Definitely not the bike's strong suit.
After fooling around, I headed to the pool for a quick dip before packing up for home.
Finally, the obligatory cool car and bike picture! Mad style points.
I'm looking forward to my next adventure on my new bike - I think it'll last for many more years to come.
A final note: nothing from this bottle (also found in the creek) was consumed in the making of this post. Another sort of bottle may have donated liquid at the time, but I can't remember.
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