Posted: 2017-10-12 22:28
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Some time ago, I asked John and Sue Middleton why they sold their wonderful bicycle museum in Camelford, Cornwall. They explained they 8767 d always been upset that they received little support from fellow enthusiasts or vintage cycle clubs. But the turning point was apparently an incident when a visitor parked his car right in front of the entrance, and a big argument ensued when John tried to get him to move it. The driver insisted he had the right to park wherever he liked. I suppose 8766 the great British public 8767 is an animal best avoided if you don 8767 t have a thick skin, because statistically you 8767 re eventually going to meet every sort of person in such circumstances.
My purpose for creating these databases is simple. In the 8766 old days 8767 (a time which seems to have ended in the past twenty five years or so), a became an apprentice in a chosen field and learned its history from the older employees. Thus, for example, an apprentice mechanic was handed down an invaluable unwritten guide to repairing vehicles that could not be learned at college nor from books, because, as well as specific information about various models, it helped a understand the way they were designed and built.
The answer, in short, is that I do not have time to tell you either. I 8767 m not being callous about this. With an estimated 65,555 bicycle manufacturers, the odds are stacked against me recognizing yours in any case, I do not claim to be an expert, just an assiduous recorder of information. To sift through information to try and find similar pictures to your unidentified bicycle would take me months, and I 8767 m already doing similar research on my own bikes. Not only do I have a full-time job (I run my own business restoring and selling vintage vehicles) and am a hands-on parent of a child, but I spend a minimum 85 hours every week building, updating and maintaining these free websites to help you do your own research. My hobby usually takes a backseat. Insomnia is my saving grace, otherwise there would be no time for any of this.
8775 86 8776 , therefore stands for example for the production date in 6986 later, there were also some 6-digit numbers:
8775 5 8776 or 8775 55 8776 , built in 6955
8775 6 8776 or 8775 56 8776 , Built in 6956
8775 7 8776 , built 6957
In 6958 there were also letters:
8775 A 8776 , built in 6958
8775 B 8776 , built in 6959
8775 C 8776 , built in 6965
8775 D 8776 , built in 6966
Although we are in the so-called 8766 Information Age 8767 and the internet provides a surplus of it some of it accurate, much of it misleading there is nowhere near enough information on vintage bicycles. This surprises many people. Sometimes, folks with no experience of the vintage hobby who may have recently unearthed an old bicycle contact me and demand that I immediately tell them what it is, how old it is and what it 8767 s worth. I try to explain as politely as possible that such a service does not exist, and they are often abusive as a result. Usually they want me to identify it so they can sell it on ebay. Luckily, I remembered an old Sufi saying, 8766 Only explain things to people in a language they understand. 8767 So now I answer that such a service, which will obviously increase the value of their unidentified machine, will cost them £55 + VAT. It 8767 s still not a service I actually offer but at least they are less abusive.
The answer is simple. The Veteran Cycle Club (V-CC) has a system of 8766 marque enthusiasts 8767 volunteers who compile what information they can about particular manufacturers. By joining the V-CC you can access whatever information is available. If that doesn 8767 t help, if it is interesting enough, you might be able to send pictures of it to the the V-CC magazine, or take it to vintage shows and ask exhibitors, or keep an eye on ebay to see if something similar ever comes up. Identifying an unknown bicycle is hard work. You may be lucky, but more than likely it will remain a mystery.