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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:47 pm 
retrobike rider
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biglev wrote:
great thread!!

Apps did make it to the MTB hall of fame so the US did recognise him.
http://www.completesite.com/mbhof/page. ... mberid=209
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geoff_Apps

No, Apps never made it into the US MTB hall of fame though when the HoF was based in Crested Butte
they did add some pages telling the British side of the story including Apps and the Roughstuff Fellowship.

The US MTB HoF then moved to the Marin Museum of Bicycling so I nominated him there. The ruled that only bike makers that used tyres of 2 inches wide or greater could be nominated. They seem to have a problem with converting the 650x54mm tyres that Apps used on all his production bikes into inches. With that inept response I gave up.

The fundamental problem is that though Gary Fisher, Charlie Kelly & Joe Breeze all credit Apps as being the originator of the 700c wheel size for use on mountain bikes, very few others in the HoF community know about him. Several used Marin frame-builders used the 650b and 700c Hakkapeliitta tyres that Apps exported to California, but few knew where they came from. Ibis even named a bicycle after the tyres, The Hakkalugi arguably the first mass produced 'gravel grinder'? Also Bruce
Gordon had copies made which he sold and still sells as the Rock'n'Road tyres.

biglev wrote:
great thread!!
I grew up in Wendover, Aston hill Aylesbury area, and i saw 2-3 high paths in the early 80s- 83-85 but then the industry took off. 80-89 i works in one and it was great to seen new bikes coming out all the time. But by 87-88 everyone wanted Marin, Scott, cannondale, specialized etc. Shame in some ways that we couldn't really compete but maybe that why i am still a sucker for old late 80s British mtbs...
It is always interesting to take an old Apps bike along to a local MTB club ride. At first they politely take the piss, but then are surprised that they can't easily shake me off, no matter how difficult the terrain they ride. (Apart from long smooth up hills where the weight of the old bikes and the strength of the old knees take their toll) Once the ride went onto soft sand and I was the only rider who didn't have to get off and walk. Another time I got a round of applause after clearing a technical downhill course they had built. I think that they were expecting me to die in the attempt.


Last edited by GrahamJohnWallace on Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2019 8:03 pm 
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I saw a Diamond Back Ridge rider from 1982 on Ebay. It was earlier this year, as far as I can remember. It claimed to be Britain's oldest MTB. It was probably brought in from Japan or wherever later than '82. It had a lugged frame construction and was, as far as I can remember in a black and white original finish. If I posted it on RB I can't find it.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2019 8:10 pm 
retrobike rider
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Duxuk wrote:
I saw a Diamond Back Ridge rider from 1982 on Ebay. It was earlier this year, as far as I can remember. It claimed to be Britain's oldest MTB. It was probably brought in from Japan or wherever later than '82. It had a lugged frame construction and was, as far as I can remember in a black and white original finish. If I posted it on RB I can't find it.

The seller posted it on page7 of this thread.viewtopic.php?f=1&t=391120&start=60


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 14, 2019 11:37 am 
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.
Quote:
(1) At the time a good British road bike cost less than £100 and £300+ looked like more than the British public would be prepared to pay

Quote:
Apps then decided to manufacture his design even though at £400 it would cost over four times the price of a good quality road bike.



1977?

I think you need to define "good British road bike" and "good quality road bike" Graham.

Iirc In 1977 just a new 531db frame wouldn't have left you with much change from 100 quid. A quality road bike- at least what I'd call a quality road bike- would have cost you all of 300 quid and more. 400 quid would have been getting you into what we used to call "Campag throughout" ie more or less what Eddy Merckx etc. would have been riding.


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 6:14 pm 
retrobike rider
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torqueless wrote:
.
Quote:
(1) At the time a good British road bike cost less than £100 and £300+ looked like more than the British public would be prepared to pay

Quote:
Apps then decided to manufacture his design even though at £400 it would cost over four times the price of a good quality road bike.


1977?

I think you need to define "good British road bike" and "good quality road bike" Graham.

Iirc In 1977 just a new 531db frame wouldn't have left you with much change from 100 quid. A quality road bike- at least what I'd call a quality road bike- would have cost you all of 300 quid and more. 400 quid would have been getting you into what we used to call "Campag throughout" ie more or less what Eddy Merckx etc. would have been riding.

Though I usually try to be specific with the terminology I use, here the relative concept of "good" seems to have crept in. What is a good road bike to an occasional rider would probably not be classified as good by a serious club rider certainly not by a professional racer.

What I meant when using the word 'good' was average in the most-common sense of the word. In the mid 1970s, this would be a bike similar to the Carlton Continental ten speed racer that I then owned. A bike that at the time cost around £75.00, had a budget branded seamless high-tensile lugged steel frame, some alloy components and machine made wheels.

There were plenty of cheaper 'gas-pipe' framed bikes with steel components around back then in my native Liverpool. Though people dreamed of owning a bike made from Reynolds tubing I didn't know of anybody who owned such a bike. Anyway, people would think that you'd been ripped off if you told them that you had paid more then £100 pounds for a bike.

Back then a thoroughbred racing bike was a high status machine. Anything less was a low status utility-bike typically owned by people who could not afford a car. Therefore the first mountain bikes were still seen as utility bikes, especially by many traditional racing cyclists. However, for many young people, mountain bikes were the coolest bikes of all.


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:51 pm 
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Yeah.. my first 'racer' in the mid '70s contained no aluminium at all, but, for better or worse, I did know kids my age with 531db machines, sprints 'n' tubs and all that.. I think their Dads were heavily involved with the local cycling club.. so there you go.. :|

Thanks for the clarification.


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 7:02 pm 
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Interesting topic. I was living in London for a semester in 89 and being bike mad was checking out the local shops and prices (which were usurious IMHO compared to Canada). I saw lots of British bikes then - brands I didn't recognize - which looked pretty much on par with what I was seeing at home from Rocky Mountain, etc. Showing a Kona is a bit disingenuous, as they were way ahead of the curve with their frame designs in the late 80's.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:52 pm 
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My first go on a mtb was in 1985 on a Raleigh Metropolitan, a sort of hybridised Raleigh Mustang belonging to a mate. His dad was one of those folk who always knew what the latest thing was and so he had a mtb for his son before anyone else even knew what they were. Also before I got into retrobike I had one of those very first Ridgeback MTB's as a second hand hack/pub bike. Consequently I did not know what I had and sold it on :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm:


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 11:40 pm 
retrobike rider
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dirttorpedo wrote:
Interesting topic. I was living in London for a semester in 89 and being bike mad was checking out the local shops and prices (which were usurious IMHO compared to Canada). I saw lots of British bikes then - brands I didn't recognize - which looked pretty much on par with what I was seeing at home from Rocky Mountain, etc. Showing a Kona is a bit disingenuous, as they were way ahead of the curve with their frame designs in the late 80's.

I am pretty certain there is a link between Rocky Mountain and one of the first mountain bike frames to be made in Britain. I will check this out and report back.


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:07 pm 
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GrahamJohnWallace wrote:
I am pretty certain there is a link between Rocky Mountain and one of the first mountain bike frames to be made in Britain. I will check this out and report back.


That would be interesting as there was also a strong link between Ritchey and Rocky Mountain (My bro owned a Ritchey Force and I owned a Rocky Fusion and they were essentially the same bike.) Both frames were probably made by Toyo in Japan.


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