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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 10:44 am 
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Ductape wrote:
What about the Finns? Why isn't Graham giving all the credit to the Finns?

They must be heard.


You are right in that if Nokia (now Nokian):
* had not diversified into producing bicycle tyres in 1977
*had not decided to produce large diameter wide aggressively treaded snow tyres
* had not been willing to export these tyres...

...then the brief production of 650b bikes in the early 1980's would, in all probability, never have taken place.

However, I started this thread because the back story given to the 650b Ritchey shown at Interbike last year did not match the historical evidence. This thread was never intended to correctly apportion credit for the development of 1980's 650b mountain bikes.

In reality the entire development history was a complex chain of minor events. And had any of these events never happened, the chain would be broken, and the bikes never developed. Anyway, even before any of these events the French VCCP had already developed 650b off-road racing in the mid 1950's.

http://www.themountainbikelife.com/2013 ... ntain.html


Attachments:
File comment: 2012 Interbike caption
650b 1977.jpg
650b 1977.jpg [ 83.77 KiB | Viewed 474 times ]
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 5:38 pm 
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GrahamJohnWallace wrote:
Ductape wrote:
In reality the entire development history was a complex chain of minor events. And had any of these events never happened, the chain would be broken, and the bikes never developed. Anyway, even before any of these events the French VCCP had already developed 650b off-road racing in the mid 1950's.

http://www.themountainbikelife.com/2013 ... ntain.html


Interesting article, that. :D


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 8:06 pm 
retrobike rider
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I particularly liked the similarity of their brilliant 50s photos to two of the my favourite images of post-1978 mountainbiking:

ImageImage

ImageImage

plus ca change...

All the best,


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 8:22 pm 
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Oh my god the French invented mountain biking 20 years before Disney rewrote history !


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 8:42 pm 
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Who cares, just so long as the Americans wernt first.

That said, before long there'll be a film in which Jon Bon Jovi steals an Enigma machine from Hitler while rising a 650B Breezer from 1932...


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 10:09 pm 
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Great thread :D Loads to learn on here
Smashing :D


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 11:08 pm 
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Always interesting. There is a date line here that doesn't exactly match the above quoted dates:
http://www.nokiantyres.com/history-in-brief also, Nokian is now just a brand name for the company
Suomen Rengastehdas Oy that is making the bike tyres http://www.suomityres.fi/

In all this, there seems to be an overly important link (IMHO) between the off-road bike / MTB and the tire offerings from Nokia. Sure that the Nokia's would have a deeper tread for snowy conditions but weren't there equal or good enough offerings from Michelin, Dunlop, Bridgestone etc being already used at the time (like those French chaps)?


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 11:34 pm 
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Just found a flickr link regarding a bike in a museum at Longmont Colorado.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/turbojams/5039804655/

The bike is a replica of an English Rough-Stuff bike dated to 1978. These Rough-Stuff bikes often used strongly spoked 650b wheels and were produced as one-offs by various UK frame builders. Apparently from the fifties onwards?

The Caption on the exhibit reads:

"Before his time: John Finlay-Scott
John Finlay-Scott began converting bicycles for off road use in the 1950's, 30 years before companies began to mass produce mountain bikes".

"John commissioned John Padgett of Nevada City to build the frame of this bicycle for him to ride in the mountains. It is one of eight originals that came to be known as "Woodsies".
It is otherwise equipped with off the shelf components including 650b wheels and cantilever brakes".

"650b Bicycle
1950s
Courtesy of Cupertino Bike Shop, Cupertino California."

This sounds to be very similar to the 1977 bike that Tom Ritchey says that he was asked to make by John Finlay Scott in 1977?


Attachments:
File comment: 1978 Woodsie with a John Padgett frame.
1978 Woodsie bike made for John Finley-Scott.JPG
1978 Woodsie bike made for John Finley-Scott.JPG [ 53.65 KiB | Viewed 374 times ]
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 11:56 pm 
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Woz wrote:
Always interesting. There is a date line here that doesn't exactly match the above quoted dates:
http://www.nokiantyres.com/history-in-brief also, Nokian is now just a brand name for the company
Suomen Rengastehdas Oy that is making the bike tyres http://www.suomityres.fi/

In all this, there seems to be an overly important link (IMHO) between the off-road bike / MTB and the tire offerings from Nokia. Sure that the Nokia's would have a deeper tread for snowy conditions but weren't there equal or good enough offerings from Michelin, Dunlop, Bridgestone etc being already used at the time (like those French chaps)?


According to Geoff Apps, Gary Fisher and Charlie Kelly the Nokia Hakkapelittas were the only known aggressively treaded tyres available in these big sizes at the time. Their 650x54b tyres were apparently produced for military use and would not fit most ordinary bicycle frames and forks used throughout Europe.

As for the time line for Nokia Hakkapeliitta bicycle tyre production that modern webpage date of 1974 slightly contradicts the one given relating to the introduction of Hakkapeliitta snow and ice models in their 1978 brochure. The range of snow and ice tyres listed grew slowly from their initial introduction between 1975 & 78.


Attachments:
File comment: 1978 Nokia Brochure
Hakkapeliitta006.JPG
Hakkapeliitta006.JPG [ 109.75 KiB | Viewed 370 times ]
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PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 8:07 pm 
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Helkama, the Finnish company that made 650x54b tyred bikes for the Finnish Army still exist.
And they still manufacture a version of their fat tyred army bike.
Image
http://www.helkamavelox.fi/en/models/me ... 3nhr_arv_k

I do not know the date when these fat tyred utility bikes were first produced. However I expect that they were probably around along time before Nokia began to produce aggressively treaded show 54mm wide tyres for them in the early 1980s.

I strongly suspect that the origin of the the English Clelands, and then early 650b Marin bikes is to be found here. The common link being that they all used wide 650b, Nokian' Hakkapeliitta snow tyres.


Last edited by GrahamJohnWallace on Tue May 28, 2013 8:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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