Classic Lightweights UK
Readers' Bikes  

George Brooks 1956

Submitted by Bryan Clarke



George Brooks - 1956, frame number 986; seat tube 22” CTT, top tube 22” CTC, 73/72 degs, 40” wheelbase,  Reynolds 531  butted tubing,  Nervex pro lugs, Reinforced arched seat stay bridge, Simplex cast drop-outs, probably built by Vic Edwards.
27” Weinmann Alesa rims 32/40 on Campagnolo Gran Sport hubs
Chainset Stronglight type 45 with Simplex Cyclotourist steel double rings 44/36
Pedals Lyotard 460A
Gears Simplex 543 rear mech. with Simplex Competition front rod changer, 5 speed Regina freewheel with 15-25 sprockets
Brakes GB Courier with Super Hood levers
Stem/Bars Early GB steel stem with early GB alloy Maes bars
Saddle  Wrights W3N with plain alloy seatpin
Extra details  Bluemels Club Special mudguards

Notes: This was made for Mr. T Brady of the Star Cycle Club(North London) along with a companion frame for his wife. They undertook a club continental tour that year that included the assent of Mont Ventoux. Unlike his wife’s frame  and my other George Brooks  which have a 41” wheelbase this has a much shorter wheel base for racing purposes obtained by shortening the distance between the BB and fork ends which is only 23 1/8” and makes a touring set up with 27” HP wheels with mudguards more problematic. The frame was also made for a Simplex 543 gear.  It has double cable stops on the right hand chain stay to accommodate the extra cable which gave a positive up-shift to higher gears. Despite being a racing gear it was chosen because of its ability to deal with a large gear range. It was the most expensive gear at the time – and appears to be so today. This gear, chain ring, brakes and Bars/stem were salvaged from the previous owner’s boxes of old parts. For some reason he did not ever favour alloy rims or quick release wheels and the original set up I think would have had S/F Airlites and Dunlop chrome HP rims. Frame refurbished by Vaz Finishes. Transfers are available through them.

brooks-clarke-rb-2 brooks-clarke-rb-3
Frame and paint details - George Brooks

Simplex 543 rear mech showing twin cables

Drive showing Simplex 543 rear and Competition front changer
with Simplex double chainrings on Stronglight type 45 cranks