Mercian - King of Mercia - Touring Geometry 653

Jamiedyer

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This lovely frame was purchased a couple years back and is an addition to my green King Of Mercia which is in road racing geometry.
It's a 1989 King Of Mercia in Touring geometry made with Reynolds 653 tubing, which from memory is Reynolds 753 main frame tubes and 531 stays.
This frame is in the Mercian configuration I have always wanted with pure touring setup in 700c wheels. In addition to having more relaxed geometry than the racing version this comes with extra bottle fitting and a canti brake setup. It also has fitting for mud guards and a rear rack which are standard fitting on the touring model but were an added extra on my road version. This being a tourer it has different/slacker rake on the fork and slightly longer chainstays as well.
The fact that this is in a stunning colour is also an added bonus though it does have a few scrapes and chips with the enamel hazing in a few places as well along with a few rust spots coming through the thin paint. Overall though I really like the colour and condition is fine as is for now. The scrapes have been touched up in a very flat sort of bright blue and so stand out greatly, something I hope I have fixed a bit better, ie: a little less noticable.
Whilst not being in the market for buying any new frames or projects at all, this came about as I had been watching it on a well known auction site and it sat really low all week so I put in a, what I thought, very cheeky bid, only to watch it be successful. It was in my opinion a bargain and thankfully my wife agreed, even she was surprised at how low it went for. We were even more surprised at it's condition when it arrived, it was obvious it was even better in person than we thought. I had to put in a bid as they rarely come along in my small size. I'm not sure why it went so low, sometimes on these sites you can never work it out, but it could have been to do with it ending mid afternoon mid week. No complaints from me at all.
It has been sitting in the loft all this time, coming out occasionally to be mocked up, only to go back up. It nearly made it at the start of last year when my other Mercian was taken off the road to get stripped and painted. Was also taken down and partially built last year before Brian went back to Aus in the spring, as we fitted the headset and started building the wheels for it, but alas other rides were already doing road duty and enthusiasm for my other one to come home meant it stalled. Since then though I have been putting some parts aside to slowly build this up so was happy for it to take a while as there are other projects rolling on. A few days touring ……..
I thought I better out it as I haven't really ever told anyone that I got it and it is going to be built and on the road now that my other Mercian is tucked away for the winter.
Anyway the last couple of months I have picked up a few bits and pieces to almost complete it to the current plan, as it has had a few, and this week I fixed or at least made a bit less noticeable those awful touch up sections.

It is a 19 1/2" 1989 King of Mercia in touring setup, cantis, fittings, geometry etc

Anyway here's how I originally got it, all it's had here is a good deep clean as it was pretty manky.

DSC_1913 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_1916 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_1918 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_1920 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_1924 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_1906 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_1907 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

If you look you can clearly see the touch up on this one, taken when my other Mercian was stripped to be painted.
DSC_0289 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_0295 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

DSC_0300 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

More to come:
 

Jamiedyer

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Here are a couple of previous builds where you can clearly see the bad touch up paint. This has always annoyed me though not enough to get it completely repainted. The top tube was the worse as it had been scrapped all down one side and the same with the right chainstay. It looks like it has been leaned against something and then slid down.

IMG_0786 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_2461 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_2462 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_2464 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr
 

Jamiedyer

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So this brings us up to the week before last which I had a couple of days off work. Weather had changed up here drastically and rain had come and temps had dropped so was juggling things around in the shed and sorting my two winter rides and thought seen as how I had most of the bits to put the Mercian together then maybe that could be my winter tourer, commuter etc.
Have been procrastinating building this all year, I get enthused and out it comes and then for some reason after a week or so it goes away again, despite me really wanting to ride it. I think having such great rides in my other Mercian and especially being spoiled by the superb Jack Taylor, it is hard to find the enthusiasm to build something to do the job of what is already being done so well.
Now that winter is here I can pull the others down for some maintenance and now have a reason.
First thing was to find a touch up paint to cover the light blue. I wasn't aiming to make it perfect as the paint on there is far from it but more to make it just not quite as noticeable as it was now. I rubbed the other patches back slightly and while they were bad, I don't think they stood out anywhere near as much untreated as treated.
I rode into town on Tuesday on the Big Dummy loaded with the forks from the Mercian. I went to the local autoparts in Thurso who have a great reputation for matching car paint. One problem! Closed Tuesday!! No problem as great day for a ride.
Wednesday I called in at lunchtime for work and the young guy was really helpful and interested. He found what looked like a perfect match which was a Peugeot Kingfisher blue from about 20 years ago, put it into the machine, computer says no. Turns out that when he entered the code it kept coming back with a blue that was completely different. He then went to our second choice which had a slightly greener hue to it, yes, it would tell us how to mix this one. So I left with a small bottle of this for £10. He told me to make sure I really shook the bottle every couple of minutes to keep the colour consistent as due to it being metallic it should really be sprayed, though should be ok on small chips on a bicycle.
Anyway I spent Thursday evening cleaning it and then touching the scrapes and chips in. By no means perfect and still noticeable but I think it is such an improvement.

So top tube has gone from this:
IMG_2464 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

To this
IMG_4177 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

The old touch up paint:
IMG_4170 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

The new, not great but better for sure.
IMG_4173 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4178 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr
 

Jamiedyer

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Weather up here has been pretty wild with the wind getting up to 87mph today! Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, I didn't manage to get a ride in.
I did however manage to make a start putting the King of Mercia back on the road for the winter duties.
Spent a bit of time over the afternoon sorting bits and pieces for it between other jobs.
I faffed around with the Stronglight chainset and the Stronglight bottom bracket for longer than I should have as it was a 120 axle which should have been spot on for this, it still needed a spacer to stop a chainring bolt touching the chainstay. Once that was sorted it was just a case of making sure some of the items I had for it fitted and worked together.
Only got so far along but pretty right to cable and chain up now I think. The bar tape is looking to be white cork with white cable outers.

Spec so far:
Chainset: Stronglight triple
Bottom Bracket: Stronglight adjustable
Stem: 90mm Nitto
Handlebars: Nitto B135 Randonneur 42mm
Headset: Tange Mercian stamped
Brakes: Mafac Cantis with Shimano pads - soon to have Koolstop Salmon pads
Brake Levers: Mafac with Dia Compe hoods
Brake hanger - Dia Compe adjustable.
Gear shifters: Dura Ace 7401 8 speed downtube
Front derailleur: XT 735 triple
Rear Derailleur: XT 735 Long cage
Wheels, currently Ultegra hubs on Open Pro rims but soon to have dedicated Shimano 600 hubs on Wolber GTA gentleman rims
Tyres: Jackie Brown Mile Munchers 700 x 30mm
Anyway, hope everyone is safe and well and had a decent weekend.

Jamie


IMG_4196 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4199 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4193 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4189 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4202 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4204 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr

IMG_4208 by Jamie Dyer, on Flickr
 

Rod_Saetan

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Lovely! That's very close to mine, except for the extra water bottle boss you have (jealous!) and your paint is in better nick. Water provision aside the thing I wish mine had was a bit more room for a wider tyre, it is exceptional to ride though, here it is up your neck of the woods (ha! sort of, Drumbeg) a couple of years ago. Now put to use as my winter commuter to justify keeping it.

That colour really is lovely, especially with contrasting the stripes on the seat tube.
 

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Jamiedyer

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Lovely bike in a lovely spot Rod. Out the Summer isles way :)
I have had this a few years now and while my other Mercian has seen all the work and has even had the respray as well as being a superb riding machine, I just always prefer outright tourers for touring. This one is also being put to winter use to justify staying, more to me mentally than anyone else.
What size tyres are you running in this? Mine are 30 but there looks like I could go 33 but might be a bit tight with a guard on there. There looks to be more clearance than on my road KoM, though I think from memory I may have run Vittoria Randonneurs in 30mm. These Jackie Browns I have been running on my Jack Taylor and they are good wearing but very supple, high volume which make for a comfortable ride. On One do them from Panaracer but they just bought the moulds from Rivendall who Panaracer used to make them for.

Jamie

Jamie
 

Tommy27

Dirt Disciple
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Looking great Jamie. Have recently brought a Roberts with a similarly bad touch up job. However since it was the exact measurements for me (54cm top tube, 52cm CTT seat tube) and my long torso and short legs, I went for it. Also went in for the Mafac cantilevers with koolstop pads.

Rod what panracer tyres are you running with the mudguards, and what mudguards are they?

Picked up a pair of Challenge Strada Bianca, because had a good deal on them. They look slimmer than expected than for a 700x 30mm though, but they are on open pros?
 

Rod_Saetan

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Re:

That is on 35c Paselas, but the old Paselas so they actually come up more like 32c. I wouldn’t get a 35c proper in there. The guards are Honjo 45 mm, fussy to install, but I haven’t touched them since.
 

GazelleCMondial

Retro Newbie
Rod_Saetan":39r7jpq0 said:
Lovely! That's very close to mine, except for the extra water bottle boss you have (jealous!) and your paint is in better nick. Water provision aside

What's the bottle cage set-up you've got there with the 2L bottle? Might have to invest in something similar. My frame only has the one bottle cage mount and I hate using the clamp on cages.
 

Rod_Saetan

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It’s a Topeak version of the Blackburn bomber cage, I can barely ride to work with less than a 500ml bottle so it was a necessity touring.
 
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