Posts Tagged ‘ricardo’

a new bike, old style

darby street footpath

The cool young person’s bicycle of choice in Darby Street, Newcastle (which is the closest place to a trendy cosmopolitan cafe precinct in this old steel town) now seems to be the ten-speed step-through.

They are seemingly becoming the new “practical classic” bike, perhaps because old three speeds are becoming more scarce. The Darby Street bikes seem to be typically well used and rusted, Newcastle being so close to the sea.

A little bit odd is that just around the corner in the now frightfully fig-less Laman Street it’s always MTBs parked outside the art gallery and cultural centre … go figure, as they say !

cobwebs included...

I’m not sure about the seat cover on this one above, maybe it’s to stop the spiders living in the fork crown from invading the saddle ?

can't i get closer ?

The above red bike is a (rare around here) Ricardo, a South Australian maker, now gone.

I liked the mudguard stars and the handy milk crate …

a ratty old raleigh

This Raleigh above is rather nice, but I hope someone saves it from complete ruin – I like the blue platform pedals, the previous blue milk crate would suit this bike !

Shame the painted back guard is missing though…

3-speed royal star - i like it !

Judging by the position of the shimano click shifter and the brake levers, this one has been converted to drop bars from uprights – exactly the reverse of what I would do – This isn’t about me though, is it ?

It’s about a three speed diamond frame with horizontal drop outs – yes !

Happy Cycling …


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I like to convert MTBs to more upright bikes as I find flat bars uncomfortable, much preferring bars with some backward sweep. The Giant is a 1990s “Boulder 550” model which I found dumped for the council waste pickup, minus the wheels, seat and post and brake pads. The micro-drive triple chainwheel was badly damaged and parts are not readily available now, so, as the Red Ricardo has some frame alignment issues, I dismantled it for the moment and used its nice “Tracer” brand chainset and its rear wheel on the Giant.

Giant Boulder 550

Ricardo was a South Australian brand that produced some decent bikes, though there is not a lot of history that I can find. This red hybrid is called “Easy Trail” and was also a council waste discovery.

Both these frames are large, the Giant is a 61cm (24″). I can just touch the ground from the saddle with one foot. I fitted it with nice alloy V-brakes from an otherwise horrible Huffy suspension bike.  All parts are ones I had on hand, the only costs were  new pads, brake and gear cable inners and some purple touch up paint. Originally a 21 speed with grip shifters, I have converted it to 6-speed using an old click shifter and adjusting the derailleur stop screws and cable on the original Acera-X rear mech. It shifts fine and 6 gears are enough for me, keeping changing simple .

I enjoy playing around with such things, it’s amazing what is compatible between older low-tech bikes. The Giant is a work in progress, I like its tight turning circle and comfortable balloon type tyres and take it sometimes on my 20-30km neighbourhood morning rides, not expecting to win any style awards of course . It badly needs a new seat too.

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