Even since before my lovely Dawes Horizon (below) got written off by someone deciding to right turn into me I've been wanting something that was a better fit for a tour planned for next year (the 25 inch Dawes was fitted to me new in 1990 when overall height was the only determinand for a fit!). I looked at Galaxys and Raleigh Royals but really it had to be a Randonneur. When I bought the Dawes, I did pick up a Raleigh catalogue and coveted the Raleigh Touriste which I think was at least £50 more than the Dawes and really out of price range. The Royal and Randonneur where in a different league so it's nice to now have what was the most expensive thing in the catalogue back then!
After a lot of frustration, and at no small cost, I found the right Randonneur in the right condition at the right size in the right location for a personal pickup.
So, it wasn't cheap but it is original. So original it is easier to list what isn't - eg the front lowrider rack is missing (so I'll have to source a new one), the pump is missing, the hoods are missing (they seem to split) and, errr, that might be it. The original non slant Sachs New Success rear mech is a little scuffed but otherwise fine, the original cables are present, the original brake blocks are still soft, the bottle cages have hardly seen a bottle and the anodising isn't fully gone from the brake surfaces of the original Mavic rims. There is hardly a mark on the Biopace chainrings. The Pre Softened copper railed Brooks Professional is nicely patinated but a bit lopsided; I hope I can train it back into shape! Even the bar tape is original though uncleanable! The frame is only really marred by a period of poor storage which has allowed a bit of surface corrosion to damage the paint here and there and made the very few scratches look worse than they should. But I didn't want perfect and the dark grey metallic is probably the easiest colour in the world to touch up. After the big tour I might find someone to airbrush the worst bits (eg the forks) whilst retaining 95% of the original finish. The transfers are shrink cracked as they always are but replacements can be had from H Lloyd. Mudguards a bit warped - I plan to get some new Bluemels but it would be nice to train the originals back into shape if anyone knows how.....
It's a really nice frame - not in any way showy but just nicely put together - certainly a different league to the Dawes nice though that was......
I'll post renovation pics if anyone is interested but here it is as purchased.
Tidy but covered by a veneer of old oiliness!
Covered in goop but largely unworn Biopace. That sticker could have only come from the 80s!
Not much showiness but I like the seat post clamp braze on. I think these are much more attractive frames than the 90s SPDU ones if not as unusual. The gold highlighting on the Raleigh engraving has faded so that is one task still to do.