A BIG Bertin, continued

 

Back on March 1st, I posted about a 70 cm tall Bertin C 34 bought at a yard sale in Arizona. Todd brought it home, cleaned, lubed tuned and adjusted it and added new tan bar tape and a matching saddle.  The original as found appearance is below:

 

 

Since Todd has completed his improvements to the bike it looks like this:

 

 

Now that the changes are complete, Todd left me the following opinion about the “new” bike:  “… I really love that bike. I have taken short little rides here and there … It’s super smooth and solid though.” Just what one would expect of a Bertin, I should think.

A BIG Bertin!

Bertin had a habit of filling market niches which other builders thought too inconsequential to address. One good example of this was the amateur/entry-level C 56 track bike which it offered with quality tubing and high quality equipment. They also offered the C 33 road bike with 650A wheels sized  proportionally to the frameset. Then, they added the C 32 with a 700C wheelset. Obviously, Andre Bertin didn’t flinch from providing properly sized and equipped bicycles to those at either end of the frame size Bell Curve. Far too frequently, if you were really short or really tall, you were really out of luck with finding an affordable production frameset or bike.

The typical production range for Bertin bikes was from 52 to 64 cm in frame size. However, they also offered the C 32 in 48 cm and the C 32 in 49 cm and they also offered a unique C 34.

A little background is in order. Todd, a reader on this blog, was on his way from his home in Nevada to Phoenix, Arizona and he stopped in Wickenburg, Arizona while on his way. He checked out a yard sale during his visit and $80 later, he was the surprised and proud owner of this:

Obviously, Todd is a tall guy, but I was amazed to see a standard production offering from Bertin in such a large size. The early 70s Bertin C 34 he took with him that day was remarkably “production” looking. The saddle had been changed as had the Shimano Crane GS rear derailleur to work on a larger rear freewheel but, in the main, it was as built.

It had the look and many of the features of a C 34 such as the Durifort fork decal and Mafac brake one would expect:

As well, the period correct Simplex Prestige front derailleur looked right at home as did the 700C wheels:

Classic Mafac half hooded brake levers? Check:

What is not seen, however, is the usual Vitus Durifort frame sticker on the seat tube. This is probably due to the fact tubing manufacturers did not draw tubing beyond the typical 64 cm frame size offered in production models. So Todd has a unique, production model derivative with a loooong, unidentified seat tube but a truly unique ride.

 

 

Peugeot Course PB 12

Please excuse the surprise but a post about a Peugeot is not what regular readers on this site might expect to see here. Nonetheless, here it is. I have long enjoyed Peugeot’s bicycles but especially those of the late 70s and early 1980s. Several of those bikes have passed through my hands ( 2 PX 10s, 1 PX 14 and 1 PF 40) in the last few decades and I ran across the PB 12 recently and decided to add it to my Bertins.

It is an interesting, Canadian manufactured Peugeot and I thought I would explore what a Canadian built, basic but reasonable quality machine was like. So, there is a new website to support my intention and you can find it at:

https://peugeotcoursepb12.wordpress.com/

So you know it when you see it, it looks like this:

I hope you will enjoy the new site and feel free to comment or ask questions. Posting about Bertins will, of course, continue right here and this will be the only crossover post between the sites.

A Bertin C 10 in London

 

Stuart Windsor of London, England may be a familiar name to you if you have been reading this blog for a while. Stuart is a professional photographer in London and the accompanying photos demonstrate this fact quite nicely. In August of 2016, he had completed a period correct restoration of a Bertin C 37 road racing bike which was featured here in September of that year and shared with other Bertin enthusiasts. It was a sensitive and complete restoration as can be seen in the original feature photograph from that previous post.

Drive side profile showing off the Stronglight 105bis

 

In that same period, Stuart had acquired another Bertin in shabby, almost derelict condition. It was dirty, faded, rusty with a few non-period components and generally showing as somewhat sad and hopeless as seen in the photo below.

Bertin C 10bis as acquired

 

Having just completed a full on restoration of the C 37, Stuart decided that a refurbishment of the C 10 was the way to go with replacement taking place only for the most outrageously deficient things like the rotted tires and tubes. Lubrication, cleaning, adjustment and lots and lots of Autosol polish were required to get to this.

 

The C 10bis after refurbishment

 

Stuart was kind enough to provide the pictures of the before and after which are shown below and they give a small idea of what must have been the tremendous amount of work necessary to bring the C 10 back to a usable and attractive state.

 

 

So, a vast change from grime to shine, from wreck to rehabilitated. Stuart’s C 10bis may not have the slick, like new, high gloss look of that blue C 37 but the scrapes and worn paint showing through the wax and Autosol speak of the intrinsic quality put into the bike by Cycles Bertin. Thanks for sharing, Stuart.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bertin Finds in France – Part 2

About a month and a half ago, I wrote a post on two Bertins that were found in Northern France by Kevin R. an expatriate Briton. He was kind enough to share the details and photos of the bikes which I subsequently posted. Well, he has been scrounging the boot sales, bike jumbles and on line sales sites and has found another lovely Bertin in wonderful condition. Study the photo below, there is something unusual about this 49 cm bike.

 

bertin-junior-1-lo

It is a mid to late 70s Bertin sport bike that has a full Vitus Durifort frameset, Maillard HF, QR hubs, TA Pro Vis 5 crankset, Shimano derailleurs, Weinmann sidepull brakes and tubular tires. When you look closely at this well proportioned, well equipped bicycle you simply do not notice that this is a very small bicycle.  It is actually a Bertin C 33 intended for juvenile riders (or possibly small statured women) and looks normal because it wears 650 series tubular rims and sewup tires.

Just another example of the extra thought in the design, specification and manufacture that Andre Bertin and his team put into even the smallest market segment that they worked in.