04 December 2014

Holdsworth update - cut down and drilled

Can you tell I'm a little obsessed with this old bike?
It goes in waves,
like waiting for the perfect set,
when the urge hits ya take advantage.
I did learn my lesson about overspending with the wheels,
and have gone back to scouring for cheaper beat up parts.
The baby drill press has been invaluable,
Perfect for this light-duty work...
Freehand drillium on a pile of aluminum goodies.
These are 1973+ dura-ace center-pull brakes,
masked as mafac's, weinmann's or dia/gran comps,
by switching the left and right arms,
hiding the lettering.
Next were these cool Barilla brake levers,
garnished with old black Benotto bar wrap.
These levers were tough to drill with all the curves and no jig.
The handlebars were tweaked hard and not symmetrical,
more obvious in the last post.
Jake and I got them as even as possible,
without risking the fragile tubing.
A couple mismatched Campy shifters fell victim,
very tough to drill with the deep lettering.
A little off,
I got out the Dremel and cleaned them up after the pic.
Only one is used on this frame,
as there's only one shifter braze-on.
Either this had no front derailleur,
or possibly an early lever-operated Simplex or Campagnolo model.
Yeah you know I'm hunting for one!
The big project was this early Brooks Professional saddle.
I thought this was a score as it was one of the lowest priced on eBay...
The quality control  changed throughout the decades.
This is a 70's model,
and they used cheesy copper rivets,
instead of the cool hammered heads they use now.
I was bummed at first,
but the smaller early Brooks badge makes it authentically vintage,
and there's a fix to make the rivets flush.
In a way this inferior seat was perfect to experiment with.
A Brooks Swallow will run an easy $300,
and I've always wanted to try this cut-down mod.
I followed a series of steps found online,
making it an easy one night project.
The biggest trick is soaking the wings in water overnight 
to make the leather more pliable.
Super stoked on the outcome.
It doesn't have the Swallows sharp angles,
just a clean thin profile.
I dislike robbing parts off of running machines,
however the aero seatpost from the Rauler was an exact fit.
A bunch more parts are still needed,
and thankfully it's raining,
plenty of nights to keep hunting and tinkering.

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