Classic Lightweights UK
Readers' Bikes  

Johnny Berry - 1954

Submitted by Rick Hart



Johnny Berry Road/Path frame No. 541507 (1954), Reynolds 531 double butted tubing, Oscar Egg lugs, wrap-over seat stays with decorated flat top eyes, Gargette (RGF) bottom bracket shell, domed stay ends, and round fork blades. 23” seat tube, 22½" top tube, 17” chain stays, 40½" wheel base. Dark silver gray with blue head tube and blue seat tube bands. Gold lug lining. Chromed track ends and fork crown. Brazed-on brake cable stops with rounded tops on lower right side of top tube. Frame restored using original Johnny Berry transfers by Neil Shankland.
Constrictor Asp rims on Harden large flange hubs. GB wingnuts
Chainset Gnutti steel cotterless 3-arm cranks with single 50T x 1/8" chainring
Pedals Constrictor Asp
Gears  Single-speed fixed 19T
Brakes Dual GB Hiduminium side pull brakes. GB Super Hood brake levers with dial adjusters
Stem/Bars GB forged alloy spear-point stem. GB engraved handlebar
Saddle  Ideale 60 Record with alloy rails
Extra details Saddle support, Bluemels pump, Terrys pump clips, track end adjusters, and Tour de France mudguards

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: Gargette bottom bracket shells are found on many Johnny Berry road frames. The shell on No. 541507 has been carefully and skillfully thinned and reworked  Considerable time was spent by the builder even in hard to see areas of this bottom bracket. Note the bottom bracket oiler, a characteristic of many Berry road frames.
Right: The seat cluster displays nice aesthetic balance and is very cleanly finished. Everywhere meticulous workmanship is evident. Note the beautifully thinned lugs, sharp lug points, well defined shorelines, reinforced seat binder, and perfect wrap over seat stays. Modified Oscar Egg lugs were common on Berry frames in the early and mid 1950s.

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Beautifully thinned lugs with fine points reveal Berry’s meticulous craftsmanship, giving a particular style to his frames. Oscar Egg lugs were widely used by Berry, especially in the early and mid 1950s. Oiler on the lower head lug is normal on Berry road bikes.
Centre: The ornate “J. Berry” winged diamond badge preceded the  "JB" on a metallic gold globe badge. No. 541507 carries original, varnish style transfers. Quality reproduction transfers are available again through commercial painters.
Right: No. 541507 features a double plate fork crown that is finely cut, nicely proportioned, lightweight, and strong. Other Johnny Berry track crowns are typically of a different type. Some have “BERRY” stamped at the front, but this one does not.

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Johnny Berry sometimes made his own rear track ends out of 1/4" steel plate. Mudguard eyelets were integrated into those fabricated for his road/path frames, including No. 541507. Note neatly brazed, and beautifully made, domed-end stays.
Right: Engraved GB Maes handlebars and GB Hiduminium spearpoint stem. Note the GB brake oiler connecting the brake cables.


The Gnutti steel cotterless 3-arm crank fits onto a proprietary, round splined axle. The crank arms are secured to the axle by a stud which screws into the end of the axle. Bolt circle diameter is 116mm.


: Original owner, Dennis Beckett, racing No. 541507. Here the bicycle is fitted with sprint rims on large flange hubs (rear double-fixed), a cottered 3-arm crankset, wing nuts, side pull brakes (rear calipers facing forward), and a spear-point stem. Frame originally had chromed stay ends, a fully chromed fork, and brazed on pump pegs.