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Honusms 10-20-19 08:40 AM

Alex Singer Project
Iíve been playing with this Ď70s Alex Singer touring bike for over a year off and on. According to the seller (Swedish eBay) it at one time went through Mike Koneís shop (Boulder Cycles). It came with a six speed 14-32 freewheel and 48-32 crankset that just wasnít quite right for the casual riding I do here in North Texas. So I cold set the frame and built a wheel around a 10 speed Ultegra hub and installed an 11-30 cassette. The rear derailleur is a long cage Ultegra and has no issues with the 30 tooth cog. I replaced the crankset with a VOís fluted 46-30 and installed the marvelous Sylvan Next touring pedals. The front derailleur is from IRD, specially made for subcompact cranksets and does the job flawlessly. I left the Simplex bar end friction shifters because they work so well. I see no reason to replace them with indexed whatevers. I also left the original Mafac brake hoods for now because they look cool and are only crumbly at the outer edges. The original front rack pinched the fenders enough that 32mm tires were very tight, so I replaced it with a VO one. The old bottle generator looks wonderful, but the drag is considerable and noisy. I left it for the looks but built a front wheel with an SP PV-8 hub. I used Busch + Mueller front and rear lights. The rear rack came wired for a light (the old one was crumbling) and it was easy to install another on the rear fender. The Brooks Pro saddle that came with the bike hit me in the wrong places, so I installed my favorite Gilles Berthoud Agnel model which I have on 2 other bikes. This bike rides like the limousine itís designed to be. My old lady muscles can take it where we need to go!

TenGrainBread 10-20-19 08:59 AM

Great stuff. Looks like the rear rack is Singer custom, but there are no mounts for a front rack? Perhaps an Englishman accidentally wandered his way into the shop that day :innocent:

Are you sure this is a full-on touring bike? The fact that centerpulls are mounted via a standard single bolt instead of on studs at the pivots points to the fact that the bike probably originally came with sidepulls. Most Singers I've seen with centerpulls are the braze-on type, besides the off-the-peg Singer-branded bikes made by CNC during the bike boom in the early 70s (this is definitely not one of those, going by the lugs). That coupled with the lack of front rack mounts points to a racier bike with rear rack provisions for commuting. Not that the classification really matters. It's just fun to try to figure out the original intention of custom bikes like this.

TenGrainBread 10-20-19 09:09 AM

Also, how's your Routens doing ;)

jeirvine 10-20-19 10:53 AM

What a fantastique build. You should send some pics to the Velo Orange guys. They would be tickled to see their stuff on such a cool old Singer.

How exactly did you mount the headlight on the VO rack? I made my own bracket for my MotoCity build, but it's not ideal.

repechage 10-20-19 11:01 AM

The Blue shows very attractive on my screen.
My only real suggestion would be to replace the hex/phillips combo head fasteners that hold the fender stays with something more stylish...
M5 stainless button head cap screws, socket head cap screws... Chrome Campagnolo bolts as seen with their pedals... (with washers of course)

Just saw, note the orientation of the brake pad holders on the rear brake, the drive side looks correct, I see the aft end of the off drive side showing closed at the rear...
I do not think these were closed on all four sides. Maybe it needs a 180 degree flip.

stardognine 10-20-19 11:36 AM

I like that blue, and the bike wearing it. 👍
If you're not in Worshington state, you might have to move there. That's obviously the Singer gathering place. 😁😉

mpetry912 10-20-19 12:42 PM

That's a beautiful bike. Great blue color. and you have the original racks and stem, that's a plus. I really like the tail lamp mount on your rack, mine does not have that. This might be a Roland bike ? Very nice !

Excellent catch on that brake pad Repachage ! I agree, careful, that's a safety issue.

I believe this bike is a "Sportif" in the Singer catalogue. However the rack configuration, brakes, etc are all custom order. Note that this bike has Campagnolo dropouts and does not have the unified head tube. This tells me it was a US delivered bike, not a European order picked up at the shop.

Is there a serial number ? It will be on the left rear dropout.

Below is a "Full touring" Singer that I no longer own. Note the full front rack. I was disappointed with the ride and handling of this bike so I sold it on. It sure was pretty however.

Mark Petry
Bainbridge Island, WA USA

Honusms 10-20-19 02:17 PM

Thanks for all the feedback :). The brake pad issue was dealt with immediately. Thanks for the great catch! I like the suggestions for a more “”finished” look to the fender stays. Y’all are so much more knowledgeable than I about these bikes. I’m not sure whether the paint is original, but I really like the color. @mpetry912 - here’s what’s left of the serial number on the dropout:

stardognine 10-20-19 02:25 PM

"7576"? That first 7 might be a "1", but it looks more like the punch stamped it a little crooked. Or that 6 might be an 8, the more I look.🤔

mpetry912 10-20-19 03:18 PM

1876. the Singer serial numbers have a funny way of making a "1".

1876 dates this bike to mid 70s. I'd say 76-77. It does not appear in the list of frames delivered to Cupertino Bike Shop. R&E cycles here in Seattle sold them also, as Angel Rodriguez apprenticed at Singer in the early 70s.

Mark Petry
Bainbridge Island, WA USA

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