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Shorty Fenders

Old 02-04-16, 05:29 AM
  #1  
CuttersRidge
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Shorty Fenders

There are currently a lot of fenders out there that one may purchase;

Niagara may have some available though I'm not sure if they are chromed.

One sees them on some vintage bikes. I guess their use is limited, maybe they are primarily for racing because it seems one would still get a lot of mud and rain splatter on oneself. They look decent.
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Old 02-04-16, 06:09 AM
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Not very useful

Originally Posted by CuttersRidge View Post
There are currently a lot of fenders out there that one may purchase;

Niagara may have some available though I'm not sure if they are chromed.

One sees them on some vintage bikes. I guess their use is limited, maybe they are primarily for racing because it seems one would still get a lot of mud and rain splatter on oneself. They look decent.
Had a pair of chrome steel on a vintage road bike I purchased used some time ago. I thought they looked goofy but left them on any way just test their usefulness. I found out!

Kept the brake calipers a bit cleaner than nothing but that's about it.

Rooster tail up my back in wet weather and the bottom bracket got a good soaking too. Last ride I used them I ran thru a muddy section of the local MUP and you can guess the results. Took them off and installed a full coverage set of plastics that work nicely keeping water off my back/neck.

Only good point I could find is that they are easy to install/remove.
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Old 02-04-16, 06:31 AM
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Hipster styling...only thing they are useful for...IMHO
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Old 02-04-16, 07:01 AM
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Hipster with shorites? Haven't seen that yet, but they are of a particular period and a legit C&V accessory . I've found they work (not nearly as well as full fenders but they will keep the brakes clean water off your back) if set up properly, that is close to the tire...er... I mean tyre.... and facing in the proper direction. Yes there is a front and back.

And yes, it's okay to love shorties.....these are alloy Bluemels.





Here is a typical, got em on backwards, installation. (snagged from a Google search, apologies if this is anyone's on the forum)
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Old 02-04-16, 11:24 AM
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Old 02-04-16, 12:23 PM
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Shhhhh....I gotta move some inventory
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Old 02-04-16, 12:28 PM
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I think shorties looked pretty good (stock) on my old UO8. Definitely a classy bike.

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Old 02-04-16, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by daf1009 View Post
Hipster styling...only thing they are useful for...IMHO
I see them as more 1980s short shorts.

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Old 02-04-16, 12:34 PM
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I'm not a big fan of them. I guess the front is good for keeping your headset dry, but that's probably about it. I guess if I had a bike with shorties and no way to attach full fenders, I would probably just leave them on, but I don't think I would go seeking any out.
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Old 02-04-16, 12:39 PM
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Shorties look kind of cool but are next to worthless as actual fenders.
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Old 02-04-16, 01:51 PM
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Being slightly over 6' tall, I wonder if it's politically correct to comment on this subject.
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Old 02-04-16, 01:56 PM
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Old 02-04-16, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel View Post
Shorties look kind of cool but are next to worthless as actual fenders.
...this ^^^. They came as original on some stuff for a while. It was all about looks.
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Old 02-04-16, 02:44 PM
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No, they're not the perfect answer but have some use. As C&V coyly coolness.
OK, that may not be the real reason but....

I installed the Bluemels on a '72 LeChampion used frequently for gravel and single track off-road trails. I was planning to use full mudguards, wrapped over 32 mm width cross rubber, however this particular bike has a steeper head angle and even with a 170mm crank, has toe overlap. I could modify a full fender but would lack mojo.

Will say, for whatever the minimal practical reason they do collect muck and dirt underneath, meaning they work.

Lastly, for the first miles in a ride and setting in the cold pads, I can make them sing in true French car horn style! The shorty ally Bluemels resonate and depending how I modulated both front and rear brakes, it makes for some fun sounds.
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Old 02-04-16, 02:53 PM
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I think the appeal is that they don't work but were, in the past, believed to be useful. If you put them on your bike, you are making a fashion statement.
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Old 02-04-16, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I think the appeal is that they don't work but were, in the past, believed to be useful. If you put them on your bike, you are making a fashion statement.
I guess it's kinda like lederhosen then, huh?
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Old 02-04-16, 04:05 PM
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I would like to make three points.

1. Once upon a time bike catalogs listed mudguards a standard equipment. These things allowed the catalog to include the words "Bluemels mudguards" at low cost and without causing the mechanic a great deal of grief. That's the only reason they were there.
2. As demonstrated above, there are a few people who think they look cool and many who think they don't. The former are mistaken.
3. There is disagreement about whether they are 98% useless or 100% useless (the correct answer is 100%).
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Old 02-04-16, 04:10 PM
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Rudi, I think you are mistaken. I think they are 99.98% useless. On my un-be-fendered bike, there is a strip of mud on my rear brake caliper which would not be there if I had shorties on.
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Old 02-04-16, 04:30 PM
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My Carlton Crit came like this. I bought it in London Town in 1972 and dragged it back to Iowa, my first lesson in VAT tax. Rode the snot out of it especially in college. As to the efficacy of them, I remember constantly having a mud spatter constellation up my back.
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Old 02-04-16, 04:32 PM
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I think they look cool on certain bikes. But yeah, they're just jewelry.
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Old 02-04-16, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
I guess it's kinda like lederhosen then, huh?


Back to the op, a lot of people like aesthetic or cosmetic touches to bikes and about 10 years ago, I was in a thrift store for vets, really a huge place and I think I saw a Free Spirit (Sears) or Open Road (Mont Wards) bike with them and despite the bike possibly not being enviable, just the appearance on them made them look good. Maybe it was actually some sort of decent make in retrospect. I'd say they make bikes, some look fast, a novel add-on.

I'm not sure if Niagara has much in this vein except for these topeak detachables and bit high at that, I'm unsure if these are shorties actually, they are short: Topeak DeFender R1/R2 Set 700 x 25c Silver

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Old 02-04-16, 05:39 PM
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I fully intend to put a set on the orange Falcon, just because it's period correct and they look cool.
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Old 02-04-16, 06:12 PM
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I think some people have hit the nail on the head with the brake calliper aspect.
From whizzing around country lanes on my old five-speed Raleigh back in the late 1970's/early 1980's, I found that their only use was to keep muck out of the brake callipers.

I would still end up with a stripe up my back though, so I've only ever used full mudguards ever since...
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Old 02-04-16, 06:21 PM
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I'm queer for shorty fenders and half chrome forks the way I'm queer for short skirts and knee socks.

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Old 02-04-16, 06:24 PM
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"stainless short guards" rule. but yea, I only have them on the one bike that actually came with them-

mostly just to thumb my nose at those who hate them. shorties are so punk rock.




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