It will be a long time before I can afford a custom, if ever, and vintage path racers are few and far between on eBay...but, last week, I found something quite odd on that selfsame eBay: a Taiwanese-built (by Maxway) TIG-welded frame with track drops, a full set of rack and fender braze-ons, and clearance for 700x40C tires! At $224.95 (shipped!) from Bike Island, it was still out of budget, but I had decided to sell my Trek 610 frame, which I simply didn't care for, so (assuming the frame does sell in this not-a-recession we're enduring), I'd about break even financially.
All the old parts except the stem and headset will fit right on, and the new frame came with a reasonably good headset, so I won't be spending much, if anything (depending on how my own auction goes).
I have no illusions that it's a great frameset, but I have challenged myself to build a bike that is both attractive and capable out of this $200 sow's ear, and I think I can do it.
It doesn't look so bad in the photo, does it?
We'll call him "Trevor Wong"--because he's a Chinese realization of a British concept, and also because I have Wongs in the family. And, of course, on the Internet "TW" is the top-level domain for Taiwan, where he hails from. He'll be my lock-anywhere load-toad, burdened with rack and panniers and perhaps a good old-fashioned British saddlebag as well.
Stay tuned for updates, right here.
Read the entire story in The Silk Purse Project