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 Post subject: Mike Kowal.
PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 8:04 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2007 7:18 pm
Posts: 3798
Location: Staffordshire
I wasn't sure where to put this and to be honest I can't remember exactly when I got it. When my Alan was retired, (see separate thread) I needed a replacement. Mike's name was mentioned in a local shop and I went down to his place in Weeford to check it out. It was a tatty shed. Inside however, good things happened to tubes of metal and when Mike told me it would basically cost the same as an off the peg model made from the new fangled aluminium I went for my first custom build.
Mike then told me the Alan was actually too big for me and the saddle was too high. The frame I had built was 25mm smaller than the Alan (seat tube) and Mike did some things with the geometry. The seat tube leans back more than usual making the toptube longer. This coupled with the quite long stem allows me to fit on the bike and not look like a stick insect. Having said that, with my shoulders in the shocking state they are, I may consider a shorter stem soon!
Reynolds 853 was topped off by a custom spray by Mike's wife. Those aren't stickers its all airbrushing. I built it up with Campagnolo Chorus throughout.
It has been tragically under used. This year though it has seen a lot more action and has let me loose the best part of a stone. One down, one to go!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 9:38 pm 
The Guv'nor
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Nice Kowal. See the occasional one of these about locally. How long ago did you get it? Is he still building? Know Kowal also did a load of far eastern alu frames which he stickered up.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 9:56 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2007 7:18 pm
Posts: 3798
Location: Staffordshire
John wrote:
Nice Kowal. See the occasional one of these about locally. How long ago did you get it? Is he still building? Know Kowal also did a load of far eastern alu frames which he stickered up.


I think that's what he does now. The place in Weeford went; possibly due to the BNRR. I think the company is maybe called Autostrada? I watched him braze some of this bike together. I think the colours are a Banesto copy so timeline could be when the 'Big Mig' was at his best. It uses lugged construction so is retro in build at least.
Mike also built me a fixed which again had a fancy paint job. It is hanging up in he garage waiting for me to be suffiently brave to want to ride it again.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2009 1:03 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 11:52 am
Posts: 90
I'm sure he was the guy who used to build big batches of frames for Ribble Cycles, when I worked for them, back in the 80's. Possibly used to also build Graham Weigh (Deeside Cycles) frames as well.
I know Terry Dove + Graham Weigh used to do import/purchasing deals together on various Euro kit + frames etc.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2009 6:11 am 
Gold Trader
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Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2007 11:19 pm
Posts: 7006
Location: Odense, Denmark
So that's what you wanted the Spinacis for....

Must say, they suit the bike.


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