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54 Zoll und Karbidlampe

One more German language post about a meeting in Germany. Asked to publish the text by the organizers I thought I´d better not translate it.

Historisches Radrennen beim Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim

„Es gibt davon vielleicht noch fünf fahrbereite Räder in ganz Europa“, Wolfgang Fickus vom Radfahrer-Verein 1893 Gross-Gerau ist stolz auf sein Opel Kettenlos. Gebaut 1903 stammt es aus der Blütezeit des Jugendstils. „Die ‚Kardan-Technik‘ machte es damals extrem teuer und nur für die gut betuchte Gesellschaft bezahlbar. Deswegen existieren nur noch ganz wenige davon.“ Zusammen mit vielen anderen Rad-Raritäten aus der Zeit um 1900 ist das Sammlerstück beim Jugendstilfestival in Bad Nauheim zu sehen. Vom 9. bis 11. September zelebriert das „Weltbad der Belle Epoque“ die Lebensart des Jugendstils mit Architektur, Mode, Musik, Kunsthandwerk und einem besonderen Höhepunkt am Festival-Samstag – dem Historischen Radrennen.

Beim Rennen tritt Raritäten-Sammler Fickus auf einem „Opel II“, einer „Leichteren Tourenmaschine“ aus dem Jahr 1898 und in Kleidung von anno dazumal an. Mit Kerzenlampe vorne, einer Öllampe mit rotem Glas hinten, einem kleinen Rennlenker und noch ohne Freilauf zeigt sich das Gefährt im originalen Zustand. Das Rad und sein Fahrer müssen beim Rennen nicht besonders schnell, sondern besonders gleichmäßig ihre Runden im Kurpark und dem angrenzenden Sprudelhof drehen, um zu gewinnen.

Die Kulisse für das Spektakel ist einzigartig. Die historischen Kuranlagen gelten als größtes geschlossenes Jugendstilensemble in Europa. Da ist es stimmig, dass auch das Outfit der Fahrerinnen und Fahrer zum Baujahr ihres Vehikels passen soll: Die authentischste Erscheinung bekommt den Publikumspreis. Radfahren galt zur Zeit des Jugendstils ohnehin eher dem „Sehen und Gesehen werden“. Damen und Herren, die sich ein Rad leisteten, fuhren damit in feinem Zwirn zur Promenade in den Park aus.

So besteigen auch Udo Kühnel und Sohn Michael in Frack und Zylinder ihre Hochräder. Sie messen 54 Zoll und sind mit Karbidlampen bestückt. Die Vereinskollegen von Wolfgang Fickus bauen Hochräder der Jahre 1880 bis 1890 nach historischem Vorbild eigenhändig nach.

10. Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim vom 11. bis 13.09.2015 2015 mit dem 1. Historischen Radrennen am 12.09.2015

Kühnel & Sohn: Udo Kühnel baut mit Sohn Michael Hochräder nach historischem Vorbild. Foto: Fachdienst Kultur und Sport Bad Nauheim, Oliver Groß (Und sie können´s nicht lassen mit Frack und Zylinder zu fahren… Anm. d. Red.)

Teilnehmen dürfen am Historischen Radrennen alle, die mit Vehikeln bis Baujahr 1935 antreten. Neben Hoch- und Niederrädern, sollen auch Laufräder, sogenannte Draisinen, Velocipedes sowie Drei- und Vierräder an den Start gehen. Anmeldungen sind bis 30. Juli möglich.

Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim, 9. – 11. September 2016, Historisches Radrennen am 10. September. Programm und weitere Informationen: Bad Nauheim Stadtmarketing und Tourismus GmbH, Telefon 06032 / 92 992-0

 

 

10. Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim vom 11. bis 13.09.2015 2015 mit dem 1. Historischen Radrennen am 12.09.2015

Hingucker: Das Outfit der Fahrer passt zum Baujahr der Räder. Foto: Fachdienst Kultur und Sport Bad Nauheim, Oliver Groß

10. Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim vom 11. bis 13.09.2015 2015 mit dem 1. Historischen Radrennen am 12.09.2015

Mit Blütenschmuck: Auch die jungen Fahrer haben mächtig Spaß. Foto: Fachdienst Kultur und Sport Bad Nauheim, Oliver Groß

10. Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim vom 11. bis 13.09.2015 2015 mit dem 1. Historischen Radrennen am 12.09.2015

Stramme Waden: Knickerbocker verheddern sich nicht in der Kette. Foto: Fachdienst Kultur und Sport Bad Nauheim, Oliver Groß

Bad Nauheim/Sprudelhof/8.Jugendstilfestival/Hochrad/Radfahrer-Verein Opel 1888 Rüsselsheim e.V./fotografiert am 08.09.2013

Tarnung: Damen auf dem Hochrad waren seinerzeit verpönt. Allenfalls durften sie das Rad bestaunen – oder sie tarnten sich als Herr, um fahren zu können. Foto: BNST

Text und Fotos: Jugendstilfestival Bad Nauheim

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Miele Time Again

So it´s the beginning of May, and Gütersloh beckons again. No long ride this time, sorry to say, only from neighbouring Halle to Gütersloh which is about 20 km. The reason was a really awful weather report, with forecast rain and high winds, which turned out to be incorrect after all. Ah well. My son and myself arrived in Halle by car and met a friend who had taken the train.

Soon after meeting up with the friend at Halle train station we set off. It only took three quarters of an hour to cover the short distance to the meeting point, Gütersloh Stadtmuseum, which had had a marquee erected by Gütersloh Stadtmarketing, and a number of bikes had already assembled. We arrived just in time to listen to a speech made in honour of the original organizer of the event who had died earlier in the year.

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XallesMiele Xcockpit

Xmuswall

This time there were not so many very old Miele cycles, but some nice original condition ones, like this late thirties dumpster find:

Xprewfull Xprewsaddle Xprewmasc Xprewheadlamp Xprewheadl

 

The oldest known Miele bike had also found its way to the meeting. Its frame number is five digit and starts with a “13”, which means that chances are slim that an older one will ever surface.

Xhajobb Xhajosks Xhajofull

 

However, some very typical German ideas of what an old bike should be like or have as an accessory were also there. I must admit that I don´t like either aftermarket kick stands

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or the proverbial milk container or fire brigade bike. These more often than not show what owners think bikes should be like, but miss historical reality by miles.

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A really weird and wonderful speciality from the early fifties is this Rex Hilfsmotor. Rex was one of a whole array of auxiliary engines made to fit bikes more or less well, like the Lohmann Diesel, the MAW or the Steppke. These engines had a very short tenure as Germany´s way into mass motorization as mopeds took over soon, being much more practical and a good way of showing that one earned enough money to do without the old-fashioned bicycle.

This Rex is in a marvellous condition and emits a sound not unlike that of a Velosolex.

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Pre-WWII mudguard mascot

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Soon after 12, a 36 strong crowd assembled in front of the museum to set off on a 20 km tour though the countryside surrounding Gütersloh.

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The ride, as usual well planned and led at a pace of about 12 kp/h, culminated at a restaurant where Gütersloh Stadtmarketing invitied all participants to a meal and a drink. En route there had been numerous opportunities for interesting conversations with many riders.

After having partaken in the welcome refreshment, our small group of three people set off, deliberately missing the 4pm return to the Stadtmuseum because we thought we´d better get going as the weather was deteriorating. Our friend had a satnav fitted to has late fifties Miele sports bike, and asked it politely to show us the shortest way back to Halle train station. The little machine on the handlebars must have sensed that I detest such apparatus, and led us far astray, making our friend miss his train by two minutes. What the satnav had obviously not taken into account was the ice cream parlour next to the station, where we settled down to have a great time waiting for the next train, so we did get the better of it after all.

In all, the Sunday turned out to be a very nice day out, hopefully to be repeated next year, when I also would very much like to cycle the whole way from home to Gütersloh again.

 

Not About Bikes, But Necessary

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Jolly Green Giant

As an example of a German racing bike frame from the early sixties, this bike can´t be beat.

It was built by a small Cologne based builder who obviously knew his job, using Reynolds tubing and Nervex lugs. The great thing about the frame is that it is in original condition and as a bike it was built up by the current owner sparing no expense. The frame size of 58 cm c/t means that it was first built for someone rather tall for his day.

Of course time and use have left their traces, but all in all it´s rather presentable still.

Also the component combo is choice; one might say pro quality.

Some of the spare parts that come with the bike.

Here´s a component list:

Rufa-Sport ca. 1964, frame size c/t 58cm

-Bottom bracket end chainset Campag Record, 175mm, 151 bcd, 44/53

-2 additional chainwheels 45/51

-Campag Record bronze rear mech

-Campag Record front mech, cable-stop type

-Campag seatpin 27,0mm

-Campag “non-record” Record hubs LF

-Mafac Dual Forge brake calipers c/w correct levers

-new Lyotard Berthet pedals

-new Titan Maes handlebars and extension

-period correct Brooks B15

-Mavic Module E rims

-period correct REG bottle cage

 

+ parts:

-Stronglight Depose chainset with diverse chainwheels, all hardly used or new

-Campa Record steel pedals, chrome plated

-Campa Record Nabe LF rear w/o skewer

-Mafac brake levers c/w news rubber hoods

-diverse parts like headbearing, shift levers, etc.

Before you think that my photography skills have improved by leaps and bounds let me tell you that the Rufa owner is a professional photographer. Rest assured that the following posts will return to the snap quality you´re used to.

Crows and Hind Legs

On a fleamarket I found a number of vinyl discs some days ago, among them Hannes Wader´s 1974 Plattdeutsche Lieder, (Low German Songs). Having grown up in the sixties in a high German speaking family, but in a village where native speakers of Low German abounded, I can understand a lot of the lyrics on the disc as the dialect Waders uses (grew up in Bielefeld, but learned a Northern German dialect later in life – a bit artificial if you ask me) is roughly similar to the one I know.

There´s the song about the vain hare called Matten who tries to dance on his hind legs. Along comes the fox offering to take the lady´s part, and bringing the crow to play the fiddle. Here´s the wonderfully laconic last stanza:

“Lütt Matten gev Pot, de Voß beet hem dot;     Little Matten gave him his paw, the fox bit him dead

un sett sik in Schatten, verspis de lütt Matten:    and sat down in the shadow to eat little Matten:

un de Krei, de kreeg een van de achterste Been”   and the crow got one of the hind legs.

That´s basically what I busied myself with on Sunday afternoon, taking both the crow´s and the fox´s parts. Lütt Matten was played by one of the recently acquired Lüders bikes. While the bike hadn´t tried a wheelie it still had been so vain as to pretend to be a nice racing bike.

First, the frame still retains its original 126 mm rear dropout width while sporting Campag 9 speed parts requiring 130 mm. Next, there was no complete groupset, but a mixture of Veloce, Racing Triple, older Chorus and very old Super Record. Also there were some really horrible bloopers like confusing brake and gear outer cables, having the rider running the risk of bursting a gear outer with the brake inner inside when braking hard and needing the brake most. Makes your hair stand on end.

As the paintwork hadn´t survived too well, I decided to give the bike the chop and sell on the frame and those parts I can´t use, which has since happened. I have also used the Edco Competition b/b bearing for my Ellis Briggs Randonneur. This is a definite inprovement over the old and somewhat shaky Veloce cartridge.

Here´s an example of the paintwork.

Just like the red one.

Something that went into my box; it´s Record, I think.

This will also go onto my Ellis-Briggs Randonneur very soon; it will replace the inferior Veloce unit. Have to clean the road rash up, first, though. The brifters also were good, they also are spares for my son´s and my bikes.

And something else for the spares box.

Sold on already.

So, all in all, having had the yellow Lüders for a few weeks (the red one will stay until further orders) and having been able to explore Lüders history as far as I got was a nice experience plus the Lüders will leave traces on the bike I use most as well as in my spares box. Success.

Oh, re little Matten: In real life I´m a vegetarian.