The review I wrote on this bike a while back has been one of my most viewed blog posts and continues to be read almost daily. I am pleased that it has been helpful to some, as I more or less bought the bike off the catalogue without much independent advice.
While there’s really not much that needs adding to this bike ( as it’s quite comprehensively fitted out as standard ) here’s a few suggested additions and improvements I have made or considered over the last two years :
Brooks Leather Washer Grips :
This was the first alteration and has been mentioned in the original review. The grips are great, though you will need gloves in cold weather due to the metal end caps conducting heat away. After a while the leather washers shrink a little and the grips need re-tightening, an easy job ! The padded leather originals were my least liked aspect of this bike.
MKS3000R Platform Pedals:
The original Union pedals were starting to get some play in the bearings and they are not adjustable – while they were still quite useable, these serviceable MKS pedals are a definite improvement.
Basil Catania Collapsable Mesh Basket:
I like the look and foldaway feature of this basket. Has a tendency to slight surface rust, which is easily cured with rust converter or fish-oil sparingly dabbed on the spots with a paint brush. When lightly loaded this basket on only one occasion dis-assembled itself, losing the contents on the road after I hit a large bump. The basket is attached with zip ties and adhesive foam rubber to protect the frame paint. I use this basket almost every ride.
Brooks B66 Black Saddle and Millbrook Saddle Bag:
I think that the black B66 looks much better on this bike than the aged brown B67 original, though they are almost the same saddle in riding terms. If you have another bike that needs a Brooks ( and who doesn’t ? ) It’s a great excuse to do a swap. Of course the other advantage is that the black B66 perfectly matches the Millbrook saddle bag.
The Milbrook is a vinyl bag with leather trim and is a very useful size for small items, valuables and tools. The bag rests on the Gazelle’s rack, and as I rarely use this rack I don’t miss the lost space. It’s well made too, and nicely padded inside. There’s a larger “Glenbrook” bag, also modelled on a traditional brooks bag that is a little wider. I believe that “all leather” versions of these bags were – or are – available in limited edition, but the price is very high. I love this bag and it’s reasonably priced for a Brooks.
A word of caution with the original “aged” saddle – use any leather dressing very, very sparingly, as the aged saddles will sag quite easily if it’s overdone.
Zefal Spy Mirror:
I like this little mirror because it visually balances the large bell when mounted on the right side, however to get a good view requires taking the right hand off the bars. Not exactly a safety feature !
Nevertheless the idea of a motorbike style stalk mounted mirror doesn’t appeal to me either…
Wireless Cycle Computer:
This computer’s speedo/odo doesn’t work under 15km/h … go figure ! The most expensive bike clock I have purchased to date – but it does have a nice look about it. I would buy a wired one next time !
Lastly, if you do a lot of night riding in unlit areas, an additional battery light could be a worthwhile thing – or at least a torch for use when you are stopped. Otherwise the standard lights are fine.
Happy Cycling !