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Value of Lambert 24ct Gold Grand Prix Professional?

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Value of Lambert 24ct Gold Grand Prix Professional?

Old 12-07-20, 12:53 PM
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Value of Lambert 24ct Gold Grand Prix Professional?

I came across this unusual road bike and worked on it last winter/spring. It has been a really interesting project and a lot of fun to research. I'm considering putting it up for sale as I'm running out of space in the garage and it is too small for me to ride even though it is in rideable condition if one is willing to trust the fork (although I would replace it just to be safe). I suspect that those that might be interested in it would be part of a small, niche market but one never knows for certain. Thanks for reviewingt it and I look forward to your comments and feedback!
Specific Info:
  1. Completely original bicycle - no components added or changed. Decals are original as is the bar tape, cables, etc.
  2. The bike has been overhauled and cleaned up but did not touch the bb.
  3. 24 ct gold plating has tarnished in places but still looks amazing in the sun.
  4. Wheels are true, brakes work and gearing shifts easily.
  5. 58 mm CTC for seat tube and 57mm CTC for top tube.
  6. Lambert suede saddle is in outstanding condition - completely intact with no scratches, scrapes or wear.
  7. Clement Elvezia sew-up tires still hold air. I pumped them up to 80 pounds 4 weeks ago and they still hold air but at a reduced pressure.
  8. I have some info on the provenance. The original owners were a pair of brothers in New England - one was a prominent attorney and the other was an engineer. They owned the bicycle prior to my purchase in the summer of 2019.
  9. Have received a request to display the bike in the U.S Bicycling Hall of Fame in Davis, CA. The museum has remained closed for the pandemic so am looking at selling it to free up space.

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Old 12-07-20, 06:11 PM
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OK, no replies yet
I'll offer an opinion.

Every original and unique bike has a widely variable range of values, based on the audiences engaged and then desires of that single motivated collector.
Fork,renown - therefore,special
everything else close to exquisite

Truly a museum piece -private or public collection.

Demand,for museum quality in Pandemic?
Motivation of seller to move this piece?

Ebay auction starting at $3000?
Does that sound insulting?
Vintage, modern, e-road. It is a big cycling universe.
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Old 12-08-20, 05:55 AM
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Interesting sticker. Ian Steel was a team rider for Viking and there was a bike model named after him. There was some sort of relationship between Viking and Lambert. I think that When Viking went broke, Lambert took over their facilities. What is that rear derailleur?

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Old 12-08-20, 08:25 AM
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That's definitely a wall hanger. I can't imagine what it could be worth. Maybe a few thousand. List it on international websites like eBay & include images of any documentation you might have. Put a high figure reserve price on it. See what happens. Be good. Have fun.
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Old 12-08-20, 08:46 AM
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Neat bike, lovely condition.

Id pay a thousand for it, maybe less... I have only seen a Gold Grand Prix once before through Google. Im sure theyre rare, but... it is a Lambert (Teasing!).

Knowing there history, hows the fork?

Just remember, Im a cheapskate. Dont take me word! If the museum wants to buy it, ask what their price is.
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Old 12-08-20, 10:40 AM
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...the bike museum in Davis kind of runs on a shoestring, with regard to acquisitions. Many of the bikes I've seen on display there still belong to private owners, who lend them for display. I presume that's what you are talking about in this case ? I honestly have no idea how much a bike that was produced and used as a showpiece, but is obviously not marketed at the functional rider crowd, might be worth. Sorry. If it were me, and I wanted to move it on, I'd probably just ask for it what I had paid myself, if that's any help.
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Old 12-09-20, 08:25 PM
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Thanks to all that responded to this thread and provided me with their ideas on what this unusual bicycle might be worth - I appreciate it!

More info:
  • The RD, asked about by Bikemig, is the original branded Lambert RD that came with the bike. I took it apart to remove the years of grime, grunge and animal hair (short haired pointer?) that had coated and worked its way into the RD, chain and freewheel. It was a messy piece of business. I included a "before photo" below.
  • I suspect that Pierre/Daniel had switched out the saddles and used a different one other than the suede one which is pristine.
  • Yes - that is the infamous "Death Fork."
  • The original owners, the Paradis brothers (Pierre and Daniel), rode this bike as evidenced by the road grime left on other parts of the frame and brakes.
  • Two Lambert wheel sets came with the bike. I suspect that it may have been raced informally or at least taken on club rides by Daniel when he was the Head of the Bike Club at the New Hampshire Boy's School.
  • Apparently his older brother, Pierre, a high-powered attorney acquired the bicycle somehow even though he wasn't a major part of the New England cycling community like his younger brother. There is some speculation that Pierre received it as payment for legal services when the Lambert brand was experiencing its initial round of problems with dealers in the U.S.
  • I believe that the Gold bikes were distributed in the U.S. and not where they were produced, England. This may have been part of Clive Marriott's strategy to create brand awareness and product demand in the U.S. during the Bike Boom of the early 1970s.
  • The actual number of Gold plated Lamberts may never be known. In my informal research, production may have been as few as 14 even though 100 had originally been ordered. Only a few firms had the capability to gold plate a bicycle and when Lambert experienced financial problems and failed to pay for the first batch of frames, the plating firm halted work. Given that all of this occurred in the early 1970s, the workers and management at the Viking and Lambert factories are a vanishing breed and as they exit this world, so does their knowledge. Lots of questions remain.
  • There is a Lambert/Viscount/Trusty website with an active and loyal group of owners that were helpful in providing info. Like other vintage cyclists, they love their Lamberts and Viscounts. They can be found at: https://viscountandlambert.boards.net
The Classic Rendezvous site was a really valuable place to go to gather more info on the history, myth, and lore surrounding Clive Marriott of the famous hotel family and his showmanship during the early days of Lambert and promotion of the Lambert brand. If you have 10 minutes, I suggest visiting the site and reading the stories and insights provided by the others. Search for this thread at the CR site; Lambert Professional Grand Prix - Gold Plated - Number Produced?

If anyone has more info on Lambert that they would like to share, please do so. Until the summer of 2019, I had never heard of Lambert and their famous/infamous aerospace engineered road bikes.

Best to all and stay safe!

Take a close look at that fine freewheel! Fortunately, it all cleaned up nicely with a toothbrush, de-greaser and industrial strength, "to the elbow" rubber gloves.
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Old 02-18-24, 06:32 AM
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Lots of info on Viscount and the Gold one over at 'Viscount and Lambert Boards dot net' (cant post the exact link as I haven met the 10 post criteria yet)

Helpful bunch over there too

EDIT -apologies, I see you linked to them in the post above.
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Old 02-18-24, 12:22 PM
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What is that bottom bracket construction?
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Old 02-18-24, 01:03 PM
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I had the "Death fork on my '73 Lambert and paid dearly. It broke doing a routine bunny hop over a pavement break I'd been jumping all summer on all my bikes as it was on my regular training loop. The fork broke cleanly at the top of the crown. (Crown had a machined plug that the steerer was press-fitted over. Incredible that wasn't caught as really bad design before it ever left the drawing board. I was a sophomore engineering student when I bought mine and spent considerable time wondering how that junction was made, knowing full well they would never do THAT!

Bunny hop was on the start of a downhill. I was probably going close to 30. Don't remember any of the ride but I don't believe I had any warning or that I ever got my hands off the bars. Helmet and shoulder hit first. No damage to my skull but the deceleration caused a blot clot on my brain and a bruise at my motor nerves. 5 day coma and my right side in seizure. Years of memory recovery. My right side lost all learned skills. I am here now because I had a full deck of lucky cards that day.

I know, most of those first Lambert forks didn't break and cause serious injury. I hear the numbers that say the odds of what I saw were slim. Be aware that the seat of the fork crown inside the bearing race is where that crack will start (easy to see the dark, pre-cracked area on my fork after). To see that corner and beginning crack you have to remove both the headset crown race and the steerer. (Just pulling the steerer up an 1/8" of an inch will let you see that starting crack nicely. Never heard of anybody actually doing that.)

Run your hand under the fork crown. Do you feel the hole of the steerer? If yes, you have a later Lambert that isn't as dangerous. Smooth between the fork blades? 50-50 or better you have one like mine. A fork an engineering professor would have had cut down the middle to show his students really bad design.
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Old 02-22-24, 10:03 PM
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Sorry to read about your riding disaster! It must have been truly frightening at the time and thank goodness you were playing with a lucky deck of cards that day. I’m quite sure that I have the original Death Fork on this bike. Although the bike is rideable, I don’t plan to take a risk and if/when it is sold, the new owner will be duly warned. There are several vintage cycling events this year and I’ll probably show the bike if there is a concourse. It has been an interesting display piece and there is quite a bit of interest when visitors see it.
Regarding the bottom bracket construction, I’ll try to post a few more photos in the next week or so.
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