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 Post subject: 20 years ago this week
PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 7:36 am 
King of the Skip Monkeys
King of the Skip Monkeys
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Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:34 pm
Posts: 26146
Location: Moomin Valley
I cant remember the exact date but its twenty years since I bought my Zaskar.

I'd always hung around the now sadly defunct Mike's Bikes in Cambridge like a bad smell and when the money came it was time to turn that unsavory pong into the smell of money.

It was the RTS frame that I bought first...

RTS slung over the shoulder, I scoured the bike shops of Cambridge for a decent set of built up wheels... Could I bloody find any? Damn nice red Pace Team frame though in Ben Haywards...

So, after a few hours it was back to Mikes and I was looking at the Aluminium O fully built up, but then there was the Zaskar... Badged as an 'LE' with full M73* series XT and a shiny golden pair of RS Mag 21 I was smitten. The bike was reduced from £1800 down to £1450, that plus a purchase of Shimano SPDs and shoes left my back pocket a lot thinner.

I didnt drive then and the trip home seemed like a trip to the edge of the Universe so it was on the bus with the wheels and the frame back to home. I can still remember the excitement. It was straight round to the local LBS for a box of Venhil blue anodized bolts and an hour deciding on what 'upgrades'.

The first ride was electrifying. I'd gone from a so so Claud Butler lugged 531 frame with MAG 20 to a low level borrowed steel GT taking a hap hazard collection of used parts with me so had been gasping for a better frame for a good few years. POW as I accelerated off, squishy new Smokes scrabbling for grip. ZING went I as a newly post teenager blitzed the old trails.

KERPOW as I went head over the handle bars for the first time. OOOF went I as I did my first camping tour. CRUNCH went the walnuts between the cheeks of my nubile young ass as riding took over from drinking. UGH went the women of the day, somehow I was STILL not attractive to them despite a liberal dowsing in Lynx Oriental...

Anyway, its 20 years since I was walking across Parker's Piece with the RTS slung over my shoulders...

Its been stolen and returned, sold and returned and the frame has now covered a ludicrous amount of miles since.

:D

Image


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:06 am 
MacRetro rider
MacRetro rider
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Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:11 pm
Posts: 8700
Location: DUNDEE
Happy Birthday!

20 years for My Xizang about now too, end of season sale - half price! frame and 2x4forks and headset - £750 paid up over 3 months, that was a long wait. I wish I could find the receipt so I could put the exact date on it. I'll never sell mine.

I love the way you have extended your top tube to incorporate a towel holder.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:40 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 1:04 pm
Posts: 2500
Location: West Sussex
Happy Birthday !
My frame was 20 in August tho I've only had 3 years (I was more into motorbikes & cars in 93).


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:48 pm 
PoTM Winner / retrobike rider
PoTM Winner / retrobike rider
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Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 8:02 pm
Posts: 1171
Location: East Yorkshire
Thats a good write up, makes a good read, ive still got the first decent mtb i ever had, a 1996 Giant ATX 850, sadly its a shadow of its former self after being 'upgraded' to the best of my paper round's ability, then stripped when i forgot about biking all those years ago, then rebuilt with the crappest of crap parts which were all i had about, and now its my dad's!

Tell us more about the 'stolen and returned' bit, sounds bloody lucky as my mate bought a zaskar le frame in about 1996/7 (i think) and he built it up with parts from his marin bear valley se, it was stolen before completion and we saw it and chased it a couple of times but lost it over the local railway lines with an oncoming train (knew it was his as it had marin lite cantis and a few other bits which wouldnt have been on a gt) last saw it looking battered in about 2005, never seen it since!


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 5:25 pm 
King of the Skip Monkeys
King of the Skip Monkeys
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Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:34 pm
Posts: 26146
Location: Moomin Valley
This bike is now almost exactly half my age...

Anyway, where I lived ended in a nice cul de sac with no through traffic. About ten bikes were always outside in a courtyard, never disturbed, never troubled for at least two years. Bikes would change as they were sold on or stripped for parts. I worked at Cash Converters so was always bringing stuff home. One day we decided to put a nice new shed up and store them properly. The newly purchased Kilauea was moved from the hallway to the shed along with all my good spares, the original rock shox (now blue) and the Zaskar frame. A Mount Vision was now the pride of the fleet and lived upstairs in the flat.

New shed arrives, shed delivery guy looks over the bikes and hangs around just a little too long (shed arrived on a Ford Capri from Focus DIY). That weekend, my project XR2 is broken into, shoved forward and both shed and car ar stripped of everything. They were very quiet!

Anyway, gutted, the insurance lady was very nice and after assessing the losses, came up with a cheque a few weeks later. Gone was the Zaskar, the Kilauea, the posh pub bike, the XR2 car stereo, Mag 21s... All sorts.

Now comes the best bit:

1 year later, I was allowed to leave work an hour early. I was working in a hifi shop (remember them?) in Peterborough so it was a train journey home each day. Caught the train an hour early, it was a Friday so the missus finished work an hour early and comes to pick me up, yup, an hour early. We drive around the ring-road in Huntingdon and just pass the Police station, I see a familiar GT frame, small GT decals exactly as I left it - cheap parts and no wheels when it was nicked, now with wheels. I yell to stop the car and leap out after the guy. I clamped my hand around the top tube, the guy, clearly a druggy whines at me. The police had a pic of my bike and I was happy to drag this twat and my bike across the road. Not wishing to go near the police for some reason, the whiny guy just gave up with barely a struggle, he simply slunk off with his scrotey girlfriend.

I lobbed the prize into the back of the car and drove home offering thanks to the protector of all Zaskars vowing never to part with the frame/ bike ever again.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 9:31 pm 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider
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Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 2981
Location: Super Sussex by the Sea
I know where you went wrong - Java was the winner every time down this neck of the woods!

My Stumpy must be about 15 years in my possession around about now, wouldn't sell it for all the tea in China, in fact it keeps getting better


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 9:49 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sat Jan 28, 2012 12:28 pm
Posts: 936
Location: Cambridge
I loved mikes bikes you could always get a deal there.Ben Haywards was good but not very good on customer relations I always found them a bit hard work if you weren't spending a lot of money.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:28 am 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 2:12 pm
Posts: 3046
Location: Yateley, Hants.
It's 20 for my Anteaus too this year, bought the year me and the wife got together as a replacement for a stolen Rockhopper Comp (I really had my eye on an MG Metro) been here ever since and gets a fair amount of riding being the nicest steel frame I have.

Carl.


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