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 Post subject: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:54 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
Since the winter is drawing in, I decided to have a look for a new project.

At first, I scrolled past this Flandria bike for sale. There are lots of old Flandrias knocking about in Belgium, and the D-lock and the horrible saddle made me think this was one of
their low end 'stationsfiets' types.

However, I later noticed that it had cantilever brakes. Blimey, could it be a real Flandria cyclocross?

Turns out it is, so I had to have it! One long trip to East Flanders on a grim, rainy October evening and the bike was mine.

The previous owner told me his grandad used to work for Flandria, and learned that via the morning news on the radio that his employer was going bankrupt. PO told me his grandad acquired the bike when the factory shut down. I'm not sure if he meant 'acquired' in the Liverpool sense, though.

Anyway, I've only got the PO's photo so far.

The bike does look in better condition in the photos than it really is. There's quite a bit of paint off the top tube and some surface rust, but I think the structure is sound. I guess with the missing paint it will probably get a respray.

The frame has few identifying marks, just a '72' on the seat tube lug (I suppose this is the tubing angle) and a '14' under the BB shell (maybe a batch number)?

I'm pretty sure this is a fairly serious cyclocross machine in any case. It has Ishiwata tubing, as Flandria seemed to use for their better bikes. It also has bazed on cable guides on the head tube. There're no bottle bosses.
Oddly, there are mudguard eyelets on the rear drop outs but none on the front, but the rear brake bridge has no attachment for a mudguard, while the fork crown is drilled out for a mudguard. Weird. Maybe the front drilling is just to allow a cable catcher for if the cantilever cable comes loose (I had it happen to me once, messy and very embarassing when you suddenly fly over your handlebars for no apparent reason).

The kit is also nice, Shimano drivetrain, and some interesting shimano cantilever brakes.
Front hub is a campagnolo record high flange (yes!) and the rear is a shimano high flange, which I've never seen. Crankset is Nervar. Maybe that will go.
Unfortunately, it has downtube shifters rather than barends. Maybe I'll leave those though: some cyclcocrossers used downtubes, particularly the ones who crossed over from road riding, like Roger de Vlaeminck.

Oh, and that saddle is really really horrible. Like riding around on a mattress, but a dirty old mattress with pee stains and broken springs.

In short, although there's a bit of work on this bike, it's got a nice little story behind it and I'm looking forward to getting it sorted and riding it.

Thanks for looking.

Johnny


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:34 am 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:25 pm
Posts: 1262
Nice find, I quite fancy a cyclocross for the winter


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:52 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
They are great, nice not being confined to ordinary roads.

Most of the traffic-free roads near me are not suitable for a normal road bike,
so you need something like this.


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:07 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2007 2:04 pm
Posts: 3364
Location: Completely in the dark, thanks to me good mate Terry....
Johnsqual wrote:
They are great, nice not being confined to ordinary roads.

Most of the traffic-free roads near me are not suitable for a normal road bike,
so you need something like this.


Hope you have fun on it - although not as bombproof as MTBs, cross bikes to me (having ridden one for years as well as dabbling in hardtail MTBs) seem far more nimble off-road with a better turn of speed. Great for all kinds of riding.

David


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:15 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
David B wrote:
Johnsqual wrote:
They are great, nice not being confined to ordinary roads.

Most of the traffic-free roads near me are not suitable for a normal road bike,
so you need something like this.


Hope you have fun on it - although not as bombproof as MTBs, cross bikes to me (having ridden one for years as well as dabbling in hardtail MTBs) seem far more nimble off-road with a better turn of speed. Great for all kinds of riding.

David


I also dipped my toe in with a hard tail and a non-suspension MTB, but I didn't get on too well with them. I found them sluggish and frustrating to ride on the road.
I wouldn't ride my cross bikes on full on MTB trails, but for lighter trails and for bombing about on bridleways and such like they are brilliant.


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:20 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2007 2:04 pm
Posts: 3364
Location: Completely in the dark, thanks to me good mate Terry....
Johnsqual wrote:
I also dipped my toe in with a hard tail and a non-suspension MTB, but I didn't get on too well with them. I found them sluggish and frustrating to ride on the road.


Exactly what I found with mine! Even tinkering with the riding position, bar width, etc., etc. didn't make it a nicer proposition for the tarmac. And despite fitting decent quality tubes and tyres plus some tyre liner strips I was forever getting punctures. Usually in the wrong kind of weather for spending time in the middle of nowhere fixing them. :(

David


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 6:09 pm 
Old School Hero
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:06 pm
Posts: 231
Location: Diepenbeek
Nice :)!

Let me know if you want new decals: I've made some homemade sets. Or you can get them on Ebay, for +/-40 euros!


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 7:21 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:03 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Kent
David B wrote:
Johnsqual wrote:
They are great, nice not being confined to ordinary roads.

Most of the traffic-free roads near me are not suitable for a normal road bike,
so you need something like this.


Hope you have fun on it - although not as bombproof as MTBs, cross bikes to me (having ridden one for years as well as dabbling in hardtail MTBs) seem far more nimble off-road with a better turn of speed. Great for all kinds of riding.

David


Theres nothing more fun than sailing past an MTB on a decent trail with a crosser.


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 7:37 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
I'm not really good enough to do that very often, but it's certainly satisfying to
keep up with an MTB on the trails then completely leave them for dust when you
get to the road.


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 Post subject: Re: Flandria Cyclocross
PostPosted: Sun Oct 20, 2013 7:23 pm 
Old School Hero
User avatar

Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:06 pm
Posts: 231
Location: Diepenbeek
Johnsqual wrote:

The frame has few identifying marks, just a '72' on the seat tube lug (I suppose this is the tubing angle) and a '14' under the BB shell (maybe a batch number)?


Concerning the frame number: Flandria stamped their frames on the non-DS rear dropout, have a look over there! Most of times a 4 digit number... The 72 refers to the angle of the seatlug.

If you want some inspiration for a Flandria CX, have a look over here: I've uploaded some pictures of the book 'Flandria, 20 wondere jaren van een wielerploeg' concerning the cross bikes of Flandria!

http://i.imgur.com/pHdvl7x.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/UgwAIG8.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/C44fmfz.jpg


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