Monday, September 20, 2010

Rene Herse sighting!

On Argonne, in front of Bottles (great selection, by the way). Walked out to find a dull black frame hiding behind a purple fleece-wearing gentleman digging in a well-used Gilles Berthoud handlebar bag. I subsequently, and within milliseconds, spotted the dull gold lettering on the downtube and struck up a great, day-making conversation with Jim Britain (sp?), a nice fellow who works at Fitness Fanatics.

Bought in 1970 from a shop in California (where Jim worked), the frame's seen many miles and sports the tell-tale "beausage" marks.
- 58x56 Rene Herse frame, black with gold lettering.
- Original rear rack, and he's got the front to go with. Rear-ended by a car, so he replaced the original Le Foil fenders with some Planet Bike black ones.
- TA triple, though the Rene Herse original double is still in his parts bin.
- 650b Super Champion rims on Phil Wood hubs.
- Rene Herse stem. RH cable hangers. Mafac cantilevers and brake levers. Ideale saddle.

Absolutely made my day.


Dylan said...

No pictures? :-(

Justino said...

NO! Argh! I thought about a cell phone picture but my better judgment whispered no. My eyes are peeled, however, and now I can stalk the guy since I know where he works. Bike geek creepy isn't that creepy, is it?

michael said...

I think he owned a bike shop in the "valley" back in the mid 1980s.

Traditional Bike Club Curmudgeon said...

michael is correct - it was in a strip mall just to the west of Rons Drive in.

When he got out of the merchandising business, he didn't really sell the shop, he sold his various bike franchises to Wheel Sport East.

Traditional Bike Club Curmudgeon said...

Oops - I meant "east" of Rons Drive In.

Fred Blasdel said...

Holy crap!

Find out what tires he's used over the last 40 years, and get the man some fenders worthy of it — Berthoud, Honjo, or at least the Berthoud version of the SKS!