Looking for a special lugless Claud Butler

leachim

Retro Newbie
Hi all,
I'm a newbie here. As it says in the title of the thread, I'm looking for a certain bike, which I had in the late 60s in the Harrow area of the northwest London suburbs. It was an all-welded Claud Butler, lugless, though I now know that the correct term is filet-brazed. It was the finest bike I ever had. When I had it -- I built it up from a frameset -- I fitted a very rare cotterless alloy chainset of the 'Wedge-lock' marque, alloy wheel rims and an orange nylon saddle whose make name escapes me now, but it may have been Nitor.
What this bike had which was very special was that it had brazed-on bosses or pivots for modern-style cantilever brakes, a very rare feature at the time, and very effective those brakes were too, I can't remember their make.
The frame was finished in an electric light blue, with a chequered flag type transfer on the seat tube or the down tube.
That bike was amazingly light, at only about 22 pounds as I remember.
I'd love to find that frameset or a similar one now.
I've seen a couple of lugless Claud Butler frames for sale on EBay, but nothing with those brazed-on brake bosses/pivots.
Could it have been a one-off, or a later custom modification? My perusal of CB documentation on the Internet doesn't take me any further on that question...
I sold that bike in that configuration in about 1965 to a youth in the Harrow/Rayner's Lane area who was younger than me, but went to the same grammar school, called Harrow County at the time, situated in Harrow on the junction between Gayton Road and Sheepcote Road.
Thanks in advance to anyone to whom this means anything.
 

PeterPerfect

Senior Retro Guru
Re: Bike

Don't restrict your search to CB.

Holdsworth made a very similar frame as did several other frame makers in that grouping.

It may have been sold as CB but they went through a long transition where lots of frame builders were involved.

You might find what your after by searching for:

Raleigh SP

Falcon

CB

Holdsworth

Even Clements as they were involved as well.

I've restored over 50 bikes of this era and type and it's a bit of a minefield.

Hope this helps your search.
 

torqueless

Senior Retro Guru
Re:

If you see a lugless Claud in your size that floats your boat you may as well buy it and get some cantilever bosses brazed on? Twenty quid per boss at Bob Jackson I believe. More, if you want them to put the paint back on that they had to take off to do the job.

The cantilever brakes were likely Mafac: http://velobase.com/ViewComponent.aspx? ... AbsPos=316

When buying old frames you always have to look out for other issues as well, of course. You can easily end up spending more on frame repairs/alterations than the frame cost you in the first place.
 

leachim

Retro Newbie
Was : Re: Looking for a special lugless Claud Butler. Weight Que

Was: looking for a special lugless Claud Butler. Weight question
As I live in France, I've also been looking at vintage road-race frames made in France and Italy, among others. There are certainly some interesting items out there! (531 tubing, with lugs). One question seems important to me: the weight of the frame. We're talking about steel frames, of course. What would be considered light, heavy and so on? I've just seen a French ''Stella'' frame of 56 or 57 cm at a fair price, and which according to the Ebay ad weighs in at 3.7 kg with the bottom bracket cups and spindle, and the fork steering bearings. That is something over 8 pounds. How does that compare with other frames of the 50s/60s ? (Stellas had race success in France at the time).
 

keithglos

Senior Retro Guru
I would expect a 22 inch 531 lugged frame complete with steel head set and bottom bracket set to weigh about 6lbs 12 ounces.

One of the few items I have from the shop days (50/60s) is a large spring balance.

Keith
 

keithglos

Senior Retro Guru
I keep getting reminded of things I have forgotten. This time it's Wedge Lock cranks. Dayton cycles of London made an alloy cotterless using a straight hexagon to mount the cranks. As this was quickly abandoned the redundant cranks were bought by an engineer who converted them to a straight square and made bracket axles with a wedge either end, and a substantial bolt through the middle.
Unfortunately over tightening the bolt could split the crank.
The engineer responded to this with a phrase that I confess I used on occasion. "Only a brutal and insensitive hand......"
Apply this freely.

Keith
 

leachim

Retro Newbie
Re Looking for a special lugless CB (now looking further afield)

What I liked about that Wedge-lock was its beautiful simplicity, though I confess I have no experience of other comparable cotterless alloy chainsets. I don't suppose there's much chance of finding a Wedge-lock chainset today...

6 lb 12 oz eh? Seems like the Stella frame I've just bought off Ebay is a bit on the heavy side at 3.7 kg, therefore, as I make that about 8 lb 2.5 ounces.

But I'm sure I can lose an ounce or two just by cleaning it, as it appears to be filthy! Perhaps I can also file/saw off the rear lamp/dynamo bracket on the left seat stay. Seems like many French frames of the 50s had these, just like British frames often had a lamp boss on the front right fork...

One other feature of this Stella frame is a little pulley on the upper right side of the bottom bracket for the derailleur cable, generally superceded long since on road-race frames by a grooved runnel guide...
 

keithglos

Senior Retro Guru
Probably the Stella frame is a lower end type, most sizeable makers did very few top end frames, and it was quite normal for pro riders to have their favourite frames painted in sponsors colours. I would guess Stella made the frames for Louison Bobet though.

Keith
 

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leachim":1kuvhq5b said:
Hi all,
I'm a newbie here. As it says in the title of the thread, I'm looking for a certain bike, which I had in the late 60s in the Harrow area of the northwest London suburbs. It was an all-welded Claud Butler, lugless, though I now know that the correct term is filet-brazed. It was the finest bike I ever had. When I had it -- I built it up from a frameset -- I fitted a very rare cotterless alloy chainset of the 'Wedge-lock' marque, alloy wheel rims and an orange nylon saddle whose make name escapes me now, but it may have been Nitor.
What this bike had which was very special was that it had brazed-on bosses or pivots for modern-style cantilever brakes, a very rare feature at the time, and very effective those brakes were too, I can't remember their make.
The frame was finished in an electric light blue, with a chequered flag type transfer on the seat tube or the down tube.
That bike was amazingly light, at only about 22 pounds as I remember.
I'd love to find that frameset or a similar one now.
I've seen a couple of lugless Claud Butler frames for sale on EBay, but nothing with those brazed-on brake bosses/pivots.
Could it have been a one-off, or a later custom modification? My perusal of CB documentation on the Internet doesn't take me any further on that question...
I sold that bike in that configuration in about 1965 to a youth in the Harrow/Rayner's Lane area who was younger than me, but went to the same grammar school, called Harrow County at the time, situated in Harrow on the junction between Gayton Road and Sheepcote Road.
Thanks in advance to anyone to whom this means anything.

Hello,
Just catching up.... if the bike was fillet brazed and light then its possible it may have been an International club, this was the only non-track, double butted, fillet brazed Claud ever made...
The brazed on "Canti pivots" sound like either you had the forks from a '59 European, for Mafac brakes (amongst the first batch of Holdsworth Clauds & the only one to have them) or maybe one of the shops added them to the Int-Club's forks?

As for weight, a 22"or 23" double butted frame and forks with zero fittings would weigh between 2560g & 2570g (5.64lb - 5.67lb approx)
 

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