Sins of the Past

Older restoration – a term which makes me shudder usually, but I keep the shudder internal as I know that I  produced one myself, nearly two decades ago. Well, there was not much to have done, the bike was incomplete, the original paintwork had long gone, and the nickel wasn´t my fault, but still. Luckily I didn´t do anything irreversible to the frame as it is very special.

Ffull FfullftIt is a ca. 1923 Favor split tube, from France, and the ancestor, or one of the few ancestors, of all British Funny Frames.


FdowntubeAs you can see, my camera also found the concept confusing and focussed on the ground between the down tube halves.

Why all this? People say it must have made the frame stiffer, but I don´t think so. My idea on the real reason is: The design facilitates the transport of small items like cameras.Fphotobag Anyway, when I got the bike it was a complete wreck. It had been used by some Dutch student as a hack bike, had received a modern front fork, and there were hardly any old parts on it. Helen March kindly sent me the photocopy of a sales catalogue, from which I selected the colour option Delft Blue, and my search for the bits started. I was lucky enough to find the remains of another twenties racing frame with a good fork which was perfect in steerer length and angles, and the two headsets matched, too.


The original chainwheel had long ago gone and was replaced with a standard part. Funnily enough, not too far from where I am there is another Favor split tube – that one lacks the headbadge but has the chainwheel. It´s a tough sport, cycling.

FheadbFseatclFheadjoinWhere the frame is unmolested, it displays beautiful lugless workmanship.

FreardoFrearbridgeNow for the bits. Sorry to say that the platers made a mess of things by not rinsing properly: All plated surfaces of hollow parts are slowly being eaten away by acid. This is especially sad for the old Rigida rims, but you only find out about these things many years later.

FrimFextFchainwhlFftfkbkFfthubThe hubs seemingly are original; they are very old anyway. I can imagine the wheels having originally been wood rimmed and with smaller hubs, but then again all possible options were in the catalogue.

FrearhubFheadclipFsaddleAnyway, passes the 10 ft test and gives some sort of impression of what racing bikes looked like 90 years ago.


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