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Category: 1951 CCM (Winnie)

Trading Spokeses

Trading Spokeses

Subtitled: Wherein Eliza becomes Deborah’s bike, Mary Poppins becomes Nicki’s bike, Fiona buys a vintage Sparta from Karen…and Winnie looks for a new home

Our lovely friend Karen is selling one of her pair of vintage Dutch city bikes, to make room for her gorgeous new Linus loop-frame (which I hope she’ll review for us – its’ biggest selling feature for her was its ability to attach a Chariot for her little guy).

The Sparta Cornwall above, which she is selling, 
is the bigger sister of the Sparta below,
shown with Karen at the Fall edition of Critical Lass. 
Aren’t they to die for? (Along with her Fluevogs?)

Fiona had a hybrid (destined to become her husband’s bike) and a beautiful vintage (1978) Raleigh DL-1 Tourist named Eliza. (In fact, I strongly suspect that Eliza is similar to the rod-braked snow-covered beauty that we swooned over and dubbed The Baroness at EBC last winter, but was far too big for Angel – update: Fiona says Keith found her this one after she just missed out on owning The Baroness). Sadly, Fiona has found that Eliza is a smidgen too small for her. So, she was very intrigued by Sparta and needed a new home for Eliza so she could justify the purchase. (Did I mention she lives in a small apartment-style condo?)

And so began our little game of Musical Bicycles.

Eliza, via Fiona’s blog Retro Rides & Prairie Skies
Yes, those are fully functional rod brakes, 
which apparently mess with the installation of most styles of double kickstand available.
She has 28 inch wheels, so I expect her to fit like Mary Poppins does. 
 She’s been fitted with an SA 3-speed hub, Brooks leather saddle, 
rectangular wicker basket and crocheted skirtguards.
I believe her full name is Lady Elizabeth Doolittle, the Baroness Raleigh of Nottingham,
but as she works for her living, she has no patience for such pretentions.

Nicki expressed interest in Eliza, but we knew Eliza was beyond her student budget. So I proposed that I might upgrade from Mary Poppins to Eliza – my budget can stretch this far, since Eliza is an everyday ride instead of purely a collector’s item, and I’m finding that 3-speeds are much better suited to my rolling neighborhood than single-speeds – and Mary Poppins would become Nicki’s new ride. Since we paid similar values for the two bikes, we could almost do it as a straight swap of Mary Poppins for Winnie, and not much actual cash needed to change hands, which made it very budget-friendly for Nicki. Mary Poppins does have a couple of repairs that need doing, but we think she’s closer to being everyday-ride-able than Winnie, and at lower cost (especially if DIY with EBC’s help is involved).  Most importantly, Nicki has been nurturing a serious bike crush on Mary Poppins since she first laid eyes on her, and we know from the summertime edition of Critical Lass that she’s a perfect fit.

Nicki with Winnie on the day we found her

This arrangement left me with both Winnie and Eliza, but the Musical Bikes fun won’t end there. Winnie needs attention for her nonfunctional coaster brake and a few other small issues, but she should be ready-to-ride with a couple more afternoons of DIY at EBC (a detailed list of her remaining issues is in the blog post about using her as my Basic Bike Maintenance learning bike). I’m hoping a new home for her will pop up in the meantime (if it’s with you, please let me know!).

My eventual plans for Eliza:
– update: first and foremost, new brake pads, since her rod brakes aren’t feeling terrifically reliable
– to inherit Mary Poppins’ 1950s-era Miller bell, 60s-era chrome rack, and antique egg crate (yes, I’m making Eliza my grocery-getter)
– also to inherit the (decorative) chrome handpump (anyone know where to get the leather washers for these?)
– double kickstand absolutely required for grocery-getting, might need to be custom-made or -modded
– cork handgrips
– puncture-resistant cream Schwalbes to set off all the lovely brown accessories
– vintage light (already in my collection) rewired, fitted with LED bulb, and installed

Mary Poppins late last summer in full regalia – 
she’ll retain her jaunty custom basket liner and double kickstand. 
I know she’s going on to a great home.

Nicki’s probable plans for Mary Poppins:
– Mary is keeping her custom-made front basket-liner and double kickstand
– Mary is losing most of her other accessories; she and Trudy will swap saddles, so she’ll have the Canadian Tire Everyday one with the built-in LED light
– giant dingdong bell
– lights for evening rides
– loose spoke fixed – so, relacing one wheel (can’t remember if it’s the front or back)
– coaster brake works, but slowly, so needs to be serviced
– slow leak in one tire, so new tubes

Update 1: Fiona has written about it too! More details on the Sparta, now named Sophi, in her post.

Update 2: photos via Fiona’s blog:

Little Man wanted me to take it for another spin

Eliza’s crochet skirtguards were ordered through Dutch maker Simeli – see more on them at Cyclelicious
Winnie at EBC

Winnie at EBC

Winnie (our coblogger Nicki’s 1951 CCM-built Garry) is finally getting some much-needed bike love!

On Friday night I took Winnie with me to Edmonton Bicycle Commuters’ basic bicycle maintenance course (highly recommended, Coreen and Keith are amazing teachers). I think I may actually take the course a second time with a different bike, as I’m sure that if I had a bike with shifters and hand-brakes and derailleurs with me I would learn more – there were some sections where not much applied to the bike I was working on, and the flat tire change on Winnie ran longer than those on other bikes, so I did a lot of listening-while-doing-something-else and hoping I’d learn by osmosis.

First Winnie got a thorough wipe-down and inspection, then I concentrated on fixing her flat rear tire – with a lot of help and step-by-step commentary from Keith. I learned how I would theoretically fix a flat without removing the tire (if the tube had an easily identified puncture to be patched), then we took the wheel off and replaced the slowly-leaking tube (which I’ll patch sometime to use as a spare) and the brittle, hardened rim tape that had torn right over a spoke-end, and reassembled the wheel and reinstalled it (twice, because I forgot to put the chain back on the rear hub the first time). Keith showed me how to make sure the chain is the correct tension using the chaintugs on the horizontal rear-facing dropouts – I think I should be able to do it myself next time. I also learned how to use a contemporary (i.e., non-vintage) floor pump with a pressure gauge (now on the Must Buy list, since my frame pump turns out to be primarily decorative with its’ shot leather seal.). And I learned about chain lubricants (apparently the eco-lube I have is both unsuitable for Edmonton’s winters and the perfect clay-dust attractor), cleaned Winnie’s chain, and got it partially relubed.

I learned many other things too, about brakes and bearings and how old bikes like oil – so many I can’t remember them all right now.

Keith’s adjective of choice for this rim tape: “ossified”.

I also found an amazing old glass reflector for Winnie’s rear fender in the parts room, and installed it and Winnie’s original bell (for the record: vicegrips are the right tool for the job when the job is bending a metal thumb-trigger of a bell back into place).

This reflector will eventually be installed a little higher on the fender (so it’s laying on a flatter section) with bigger screws and washers and a dab of epoxy to keep it in place. I wonder how old it is? Did the first plastic reflectors come on the market in the 1950s or 1960s?

Done for the night.

Still on the Winnie love list: finish lubricating the chain; replace the exceedingly uncomfortable seat; install baskets front and back for utility; wire up her dynamos and get them working; screw on her headbadge; and most importantly, open up her coaster hub to figure out why it isn’t working, see if any needed parts can be scavenged in the parts room, and get it working again. Riding an essentially brakeless bike the couple of blocks to Nicki’s new apartment was not a good feeling!

Winnie identified? CCM-made Garry bicycles

Winnie identified? CCM-made Garry bicycles

You remember Nicki’s 1950s CCM-made bike (Winnie), which doesn’t have a CCM chainwheel? Instead it has a cloverleaf chainwheel, similar to the one you see on some Schwinns but with 4 ovals instead of 4 circles:

I think I might have sussed out why: she’s a CCM-made Garry bicycle, manufactured for J.H. Ashdown Hardware of Winnipeg. Yup, Winnipeg. So her name is ever so appropriate!

Here’s how I figured it out:

This headbadge, with the rivet holes on the sides like the CCM badges have, is up for auction on eBay. It reads:

J.H. Ashdown Hardware Co.  
Regina, Saskatoon, Calgary, & Edmonton

No bidding on it, collectors, we’re determined to snag it for Nicki!

A search on Garry bicycles turned up this thread on CCM bikes, which mentions that Canada Cycle & Motor Co. was the manufacturer for Garry bicycles. {Aside: It also mentions that Daniel Massey (founder of Massey-Harris, one of the companies that was a progenitor of CCM) was a brother of actor Raymond Massey – who I’m supposedly distantly related to! I’ll have to follow that trail and see if the family connection with CCM is real.}

The search for Garry bicycles also turned up these three Flikr photos of a blue Garry loop-frame bike in hard shape. The photos aren’t very high resolution, and are taken from the wrong side of the bike, but the chainwheel looks just like Winnie’s! And so does the frame, right down to the attachment of the chainguard!

(for comparison with the Flikr photos)

Bike pron: closeup of the way the chainguard is mounted to Winnie’s frame. 

A full history of the J.H. Ashdown Hardware Company and its proprietor’s huge role in the early years of the city of Winnipeg can be found on the Manitoba Historical Society website. At their height they had retail shops and wholesale warehouses in every city in the Canadian Prairies. “Garry” would refer to Fort Garry, the fur-trading fort that was the first European settlement in the area.

Cleaning up Winnie

Cleaning up Winnie

{This is actually a guest post by Nicki about her ’51 CCM-built Garry.}

My first post on Loop-Frame Love! Very exciting! Hope everyone can put up with me. I’m a complete novice and this whole process is definitely a learning experience for me. Feel free to correct me in the comments.

As you know, I’ve acquired a 1951 CCM! She’s gorgeous and has since been christened “Winnie”.

Last weekend was our bicycling cleaning party. Myself, Deborah, and Angel took on the task of cleaning up Winnie with a little Rust-Cure and investigating her a bit more closely.

We started with some disassembly. We took off her basket (which took a bit of time. Yeesh.) and we also removed the electric-taped wiring from the generator/Miller dynamo light. The wire was pretty much shot and will definitely have to be replaced.

After removing the basket. Better picture of where my missing headbadge should go.

You can see a bit of what Winnie’s original colour is like. Seems that she had a gold colour with burgundy painted over top. My plan is to eventually restore her to the original colours.

Burgundy over gold colour.

[Editorial note from Deborah: you can also see the holes where the headbadge rivets would have been in the photo above – they helped confirm the CCM hypothesis, along with the 1951-era serial number stamped into the frame right under the seat.]

Another exciting discovery: it turns out that there are tiny reflectors in my handles! Upon realizing this, my excitement level hit an all time high – imagine being 6 years old and having streamers in your handles. That’s how I felt!

Handle with clear reflector

Deborah and Angel did some research: we had all originally assumed that the two holes in Winnie’s fender were for a mudflap and a reflector. Turns out that it’s actually for a reflector on a two holed mount. Here’s are my empty holes (look closely at the middle/bottom of my fender):

Finally, here’s a picture of my less dirty chain wheel. Rather than me attempting to elaborate and possibly mix things up, I’m just gonna quote Deborah here:

Thinking that the lack of iconic CCM chainring means this bike was a CCM-manufactured bike with another headbadge.

Very cool stuff! And this is only the beginning!

Introducing Nicki and her loop-frame… and a little Canadian bicycle history

Introducing Nicki and her loop-frame… and a little Canadian bicycle history

I spent part of this afternoon checking out this lovely creature with Angel and Nicki. The Kijiji ad only said Antique Bike, so the single photo was what caught our eye. It looked superficially like 40s or 50s Raleigh-type loop frame – very similar to Mary Poppins – but really, it could have been manufactured by almost anyone. We knew from the photo that it had a coaster brake, vinyl saddle, bottle-generator light set, Wald-type wire basket, and clamp-style rear rack. So we went to see. Then Nicki bought it. The former owner’s earliest memories of it are from about 1957 in Westlock (near Edmonton).

The view from the front. Yes, the tires are both flat.

The lack of headbadge will make identification trickier. You can see here that there’s paint on the chromed fork crown, and someone seriously MacGyvered that basket to get it to stay on. I think Nicki wants to remove it and replace it with a period-appropriate one.

The chainring is one I hadn’t seen anywhere: the closest I’ve found online is 1940s USA unknown manufacturer, according to the chainwheel tattoo project page (aside: that chainwheel sleeve is going to be *hot*). The cranks are cotterless, and the replaceable rubber pads on the left and right pedals don’t match each other. Hopefully we’ll find an identifying stamp when we’re cleaning the crankset. I think we’re going to install the Pletcher kickstand that came with Bert on here too.

The single-speed coaster-brake hub has a metal oiler cap, and is stamped CANADIAN PAT. 1937 – it turns out you can read the actual patent online. Turns out this single coaster hub was manufactured by The Canada Cycle and Motor Company, now known simply as hockey-equipment makers CCM. A little history of CCM’s cycle division can be found at Wikipedia and the Canada Science and Technology Museum website.

The tires read NEW IRC ROADSTER, SIZE 700 x 38, 28 x 1-1/2 CANADIAN SIZE. That valve for the inner tube is a harder-to-find Presta valve. No marks that we found on the painted rims. Notice that there’s some red paint on the spoke nipples – evidence of repainting, or just sloppy work on the factory floor?

The vinyl seat is in astonishingly good shape if it’s original. It’s the metal-pan dual-spring variety, painted black underneath, not a trace of rust.
I love the English-made Miller bullet-shaped chromed dynamo lights. 
No idea if they work. 
I suspect that the black Pletcher-style rear rack isn’t original.

After some research online, we now think that this might be a Raleigh-manufactured Eaton’s Glider. Sheldon Brown is remarkably silent about the Glider, saying only that it was a Raleigh-made house brand of Eaton’s in Canada, so let me provide you with some context.

To quote Raleigh Chopper Info, talking about rebranding of Raleigh bicycles in Canada:

However, the largest re-branding operation carried out in Canada was through the Eaton chain of department stores. Eatons were a large department store, based in the larger cities in Canada. Formed in 1869, Eatons were one of the first large Canadian owned Department stores, but of course one factor hindered their growth, Canada is a very large country, and its small population was very widespread. The answer was the mail order catalogue. The Eatons catalogue became a way of life for Canadian families throughout the early decades, and absolutely everything was available from it. Eatons realised early on that it needed a good reliable range of bicycles to sell. With no dealer network to service warranties, any defective items had to be mailed back to Eatons. This meant reliability in everything they sold was a priority. Eatons turned to England’s Raleigh to supply a range of bikes for sale through the catalogues. Raleigh supplied a range of bike called the “Glider”. These bikes were built to Raleigh standards at the Nottingham factory and badged up as “Eaton Gliders”. This relationship proved a success, Eatons got a reliable supply of good quality bikes, and Raleigh got an independent widespread distribution network.

 Gliders included the standard Raleigh 3-speed, as this owner notes:

I noticed that this bike resembled a typical Raleigh Sports (of which my Raleigh Superbe is an upgraded version), in that it had a pointy front fender, Sturmey Archer hub (dated 10 – 72), and the whole geometry just looked very familiar. The name on it said “Eaton’s Glider”, and Eaton’s was until recently one of Canada’s largest department store chains. I found out later that Raleigh supplied all of Eaton’s bikes, starting way back in the 1920’s! So, this one was basically a re-badged Raleigh Sports.

Loop-frame ladies’ Gliders were also offered, as this owner’s bike shows (follow the link for his photos for comparison to Nicki’s bike).

So what about the tires, non-SA hub, non-Raleigh chainwheel, and so forth? Well, if you look at the photos above, the bike looks like it was repainted at some point. Here’s our theory: somebody left the bike out all winter for a couple of years when they were no longer using it, then it got new tires, a new seat, new handles, replacement bottom bracket set, and a new paint job – and possibly a new chain guard – sometime in the 1950s. This might sound far-fetched, except that a Glider with similar replacement parts to this one has been documented by a user on the OldRoads forum (about 1/3 of the way down the page).

The way to confirm this hypothesis will be to see if we can find the frame serial numbers in the Raleigh database, compare the frame and handlebar measurements to mine to confirm they’re identical, and see if there are twin rivet holes where the Eaton’s Glider headbadge would have gone.

An alternative hypothesis, and a simpler story, is that this is a CCM-built bicycle with CCM parts. Occam’s Razor says that’s more likely, after all. If we disconfirm our Glider hypothesis with measurements, I think we’ll definitely need to research the bikes listed by the Canada Science and Technology Museum: the Cleveland, Silver Ribbon, Ivanhoe, Perfect, Columbia, Rambler, and so on.

Bike cleaning party tomorrow – stay tuned!

Update 1: Flikr seems to be siding with the Occam’s Razor hypothesis that this is a CCM bike. No loop-frames for comparison, but check this stuff out:

First off, for rivet hole placement where the headbadge should be:
– the classic CCM headbadge:
– an alternative (off-label) headbadge with same rivet hole spacing:

Example 1:
– same chromed fork crown:
– and same cranks (different chainwheel) & chainguard:
– and same coaster hub:
– on this balloon-tire CCM cruiser:

Example 2:
– same fork crown:
– possible missing decal:
– another headbadge beauty shot, note the pinstriping:
– and same chainguard and rear rack, all on this 1942 CCM Rambler:

Confirmation one way or the other tomorrow afternoon…

Update 2: I found some more CCM goodies through a Google Images search.

First of all, Gerry Lauzon at has an indispensable post about finding his 1950 CCM ladies-frame bike, which includes serial number information. The photos show a bicycle that’s very similar to Nicki’s. He went on to do a series of posts at a separate blog about the restoration and rebuild process for “Victoria” that’s pretty interesting reading.

It just so happens that we took a photo of the serial number. It’s a bit blurry, but it looks to me like it’s xxxxxC, which corresponds to a 1951 manufacture date.

Montreal’s La Bicycletterie J.R. have great photos right now of another restored 1950 CCM loop-frame bicycle that they’re selling, including one of a more recent headbadge than seen in the Flikr examples, with a red-painted background and the same rivet spacing as the others. Again, the bike looks eerily like Nicki’s, right down to the red tire rims with white pinstripes. I love that they’ve swapped out the plastic handles for cork ones. Yum.

The Canadian Design Resource post on the CCM Imperial Mark II includes a great photo of that same CCM headbadge, sans red paint, and CCM-marked fork crown – and some post-1960 serial number information in the comments.

Finally, one more neat link: North Vancouver’s HUKK Bikes have photos of a 1940s CCM bicycle they sold which features an original painted headbadge, which was used instead of the embossed metal one due to rationing.

My money is now on this lovely bicycle being a 1951 CCM. We’ll find out for sure tomorrow, I guess. So, what should we name her?