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Mercian

Old 11-11-18, 01:57 PM
  #1  
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Mercian

How do I find out info on this Mercian. It is the latest in a series of 57 cm bikes I am trying to ride. I'm 6 foot, with a 33 inch inseam and ride 58-60 cm bikes. Other cyclists keep telling me I should ride a 56-57 cm bike. I've committed to try to make this comfortable.

I bought the frame. I forget what I paid. It wasn't a bunch.

I like the ride. I finished with a solid 105 9 speed group.

I'd like to know a little about the frame, steel, lugs and value.

Thank you.



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Old 11-11-18, 03:16 PM
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Looking a the bike, 17cm cranks, 57 cm seat tube and 18-21 cm to the top of the saddle... your saddle may be too high.

The Mercian's that get the $ attention usually have intricate paint. Does not make them better, just higher a coffeehouse score.
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Old 11-11-18, 04:34 PM
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Looks fun! Given the amount of seat post showing and the tall stem, I have to wonder what the next size up would do for you. On a lot of vintage bikes the top tube does not grow in length in tandem with the seat tube. So you might find the next size up would give you similar geometry. But it looks like you adjusted for the size anyway.

Last edited by wrk101; 11-11-18 at 04:58 PM.
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Old 11-11-18, 05:40 PM
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Thank you both

I agree. I have yet to find a 57 cm bike comfortable. Why do most people look at me funny when I tell them I ride a 58-60, 61 cm bike? Even 63. NOT 65.

Is it just the younger folks bend better than I, and like the extreme seat posts????

Anyway, where can I learn more about Mercians, and what type of tubes are on this bike?

Thank you.
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Old 11-11-18, 06:05 PM
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This may help.

History - Mercian
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Old 11-11-18, 06:08 PM
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Mercian Website

Looks pretty much like what they call the Audax Special though it could be custom or some other model but the simple lined lugs without cutouts and simple decoration (subtle and elegant, I think) seem to match. Very nice bike, to my eyes.
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Old 11-12-18, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by jjames1452 View Post
I agree. I have yet to find a 57 cm bike comfortable. Why do most people look at me funny when I tell them I ride a 58-60, 61 cm bike? Even 63. NOT 65.

Is it just the younger folks bend better than I, and like the extreme seat posts????

Anyway, where can I learn more about Mercians, and what type of tubes are on this bike?

Thank you.
Bike frame geometry has changed and so sizing has changed with it. If it's all younger people who have never been on frames from the 70's who are telling you this, they are probably making assumptions based on modern bikes.
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Old 11-12-18, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by cb400bill View Post
This may help.

History - Mercian
Thank you!!
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Old 11-12-18, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by desconhecido View Post
Mercian Website

Looks pretty much like what they call the Audax Special though it could be custom or some other model but the simple lined lugs without cutouts and simple decoration (subtle and elegant, I think) seem to match. Very nice bike, to my eyes.
thank you much!!!
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Old 11-12-18, 06:24 PM
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Originally Posted by lostarchitect View Post
Bike frame geometry has changed and so sizing has changed with it. If it's all younger people who have never been on frames from the 70's who are telling you this, they are probably making assumptions based on modern bikes.
Agreed. I will try my best to make this bike work. I really like the ride.

Thank you .
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Old 11-15-18, 03:48 AM
  #11  
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Looking at the seat stay tops I think your frame is an older one. By ‘82 Mercian was using top eyes with “Mercian” engraved in them. Nice bike and good luck with getting this size to work. Mercian still builds great bikes and I love my two.

The fashion for at least a couple of decades now has been a faux racer position on a relatively small frame. Bike shops used to try to put me on 55s, but I am happiest on 60 cm to top and rose a bunch of miles this summer on a 62 cm French Liberia and greatly enjoyed it. Ride what works for you.

Last edited by rustystrings61; 11-15-18 at 03:51 AM.
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Old 11-16-18, 12:35 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
Ride what works for you.
+1 I'm 6'2" and ride 57 - 59cm, but I've never had a touring or more upright style bike (apart from my mountain bike), so I'm happy with elbows down and butt in the air.
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Old 11-16-18, 07:55 AM
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We didn't answer all your questions; the lugs look to be Prugnat S long-point. Because it's a Mercian, we can pretty much assume it's Reynolds 531 DB throughout. Even their cheapest bike, the Campionissimo, was full 531 DB, just built with basic parts to a stock design with stamped ends. I think yours is a King of Mercia variant - the 1970 catalog notes they could be ordered with either the Prugnats seen here or Nervex Professional lugs, and Italian semi-sloping or Cinelli full slope fork crowns were options as well. Looking again at your bike, I'm thinking it was built in the 70s. If you really want to know the date of manufacture, you could send the serial number to Mercian, but I understand they charge a fee for that service now. Or you could post the number and serial numerologists could decipher it for you ....

I think ALL Mercians are nice bikes. They're all hand-built in Derby using traditional practices, they have very good, durable finishes, and I have loved the ride quality of both my 2002 Vincitore custom and my '82 Colorado racing bike.
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