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1965 Gazelle A Dutch bike

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1965 Gazelle A Dutch bike

Old 11-21-21, 06:57 PM
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1965 Gazelle A Dutch bike

So yesterday I received a pair of bicycles from one of my parents' friends and the most fun one might actually be this bog-standard looking Dutch bike.
It used to belong to one of their uncles and was apparently used as a police bike. It has the extremely relaxed geometry of the old English roadsters and while it is a little too small for me at 60cm it does ride extremely well. Though the very sprung saddle probably helps.

The frame number 1959744 tells me the bike is from 1965 but I will have to check the rest of the parts to see how true that is. The model name "A" does not show up anywhere online but it looks very similar to the Gazelle Trimsport and Impala Toer from the same year.

EDIT: The user Fongers1952 pointed me in the right direction. According to him the model A was the cheapest of the four tour models (cheap to expensive: A < P < 1 < 8) but the differences weren't all that big. Here is an example of a No 1 from 1958. Not sure about the Model A, but the No. 1 was hfl 180.50 in 1959 (608.15 or $684.92 in today's money)


Gazelle Trimsport

It is a fairly heavy steel frame with 28 inch / ETRTO 40x635mm / 700A wheels, coaster brake and dynamo lighting. Not to mention the fenders, varnished cloth chainguard and spoke guards, Lepper sprung saddle and cottered cranks. I bet there is even a very nice hardened steel Gazelle branded chainring under there.
The rear hub is a Torpedo coaster brake but I will have to check the exact type once I remove some of the rust..

Oh and virtually every single part has pin/box striping on it. Frame, fenders and even the rims. Gold on dark brown all over.

Future plans:
I'm not entirely sure where I want to take this project. On the one hand it is slightly too small for me, though I can ride it if I raise the saddle and handlebars, but on the other hand it is such a nice riding bike that it would be a shame to just flip it.
One thing I do know is that I want to overhaul all of the running parts and derust everything as good as possible. The chaincase is probably a lost cause but I can find high quality intact ones over here for relatively affordable prices.

I might want to rebuild the wheels while I am at it with modern stainless steel spokes (and brass washers <3). And maybe, just maybe, put a nice and shiny (SP?) dynamo hub in the front and stealth mod an LED setup in there.
Add some cream tyres and this should be good for another 56 years.

Questions:
One of the bigger questions is how to best preserve the original paint? I know boiled linseed oil should work well after removing rust and cleaning everything but wouldn't a clear coat of lacquer be better?

As far as I know it is impossible to replace the original shiny coat on the varnished cloth chainguard. Or is there something I can do? Especially the spoke guards would be nice to preserve.

All the chrome parts will probably receive a clean and polish with aluminum foil. Followed up with a coat of wax.

Pictures:
Now, without further ado:










Last edited by JaccoW; 11-22-21 at 10:52 AM.
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Old 11-21-21, 07:01 PM
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Some better close-ups of the lighting system and a first look at what a simple application of boiled linseed oil can do:






Invicta sidewall dynamo


Gazelle branded headlight


Koets branded taillight



After a first application of boiled linseed oil


Gazelle branded bell
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Old 11-21-21, 07:30 PM
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That's some crazy cool stuff there by my standard, I love it. Can't wait to see how you sort it out so keep up updated.
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Old 11-21-21, 07:48 PM
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That's a crazily relaxed front end! Looks like you'd have to lean back in order to ride it.
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Old 11-21-21, 07:53 PM
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Amazing bike.
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Old 11-22-21, 12:35 AM
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Nice Opafiets.

I love mine. I did a Drum brake build with mine and it is from 83.
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Old 11-22-21, 05:06 AM
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Thanks everyone. On the Dutch Oude Fiets forum somebody suggested the Sturmey Archer GH6 as a period correct alternative for the SP dynamo hub. Which could work! I even have two lying around here somewhere but probably not in the right number of spokes.
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Old 11-22-21, 06:05 AM
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Nice bike! How would the Police use such a bicycle? What do they do with the bad guy, strap him to the rear rack?
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Old 11-22-21, 07:32 AM
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@JaccoW - you always bring wonderful items to the Forum. Congrats on the new presents.
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Old 11-22-21, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Colorado Kid
Nice bike! How would the Police use such a bicycle? What do they do with the bad guy, strap him to the rear rack?
Tackle them (or just run them over with this bike) and call in a cruiser.

Most Dutch cities have police officers patrolling by bike. You see and hear a lot more that way.
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Old 11-22-21, 08:24 AM
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I love this bike on so many levels. My 2 cents;

- The chain guard looks quite rough so I would try to source one a bit more structurally sound.
- I have not used boiled linseed on any of my bikes so I have nothing to offer there but on painted frames and forks I use an automotive paint cleaner which is a part of a multi step detailing process to make paint shine on cars. Essentially its an extremely fine polishing compound. I avoid getting aggressive with it near stickers/decals but it has worked well for me.
- Im interested to see if that rear hub will shine up. It seems like many bikes from the 50s and 60s had chrome applied with a trowel and Im often pleasantly surprised how well they brighten up.

It looks like a fun project and even if it doesnt fit, you can preserve one more neat old bike for someone else that will hopefully appreciate your efforts. (Thats how Im treating my old Rudge which is similar to your bike.)
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Old 11-22-21, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by RustyJames
I love this bike on so many levels. My 2 cents;

- The chain guard looks quite rough so I would try to source one a bit more structurally sound.
- I have not used boiled linseed on any of my bikes so I have nothing to offer there but on painted frames and forks I use an automotive paint cleaner which is a part of a multi step detailing process to make paint shine on cars. Essentially it’s an extremely fine polishing compound. I avoid getting aggressive with it near stickers/decals but it has worked well for me.
- I’m interested to see if that rear hub will shine up. It seems like many bikes from the ‘50s and ‘60s had chrome applied with a trowel and I’m often pleasantly surprised how well they brighten up.

It looks like a fun project and even if it doesn’t fit, you can preserve one more neat old bike for someone else that will hopefully appreciate your efforts. (That’s how I’m treating my old Rudge which is similar to your bike.)
I think I can source a NOS one but we'll see how it holds up when I take out the rear wheel to check the hub. It might be pitted but these hubs usually have a fairly thick chrome layer.

As it stands I'm still not entirely sure if this bike was originally a dark brown or just black.


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Old 11-22-21, 01:24 PM
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-----

thanks very much for sharing this new arrival!

love how even the machine's propstand sports a bounding gazelle -



-----
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Old 11-22-21, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner
That's a crazily relaxed front end! Looks like you'd have to lean back in order to ride it.
My first thought was that I'd fall off the back trying to ride it!
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Old 11-22-21, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott
My first thought was that I'd fall off the back trying to ride it!
Well, you are practically pulling on the handlebars when you're riding it.
It's definitely upright and I haven't ridden a bike like that in years. In fact I took it out tonight in the near freezing weather just to get a feel for riding it. It's just such a relaxing cruiser. <3
You cannot go very fast as you will just spin out but it feels light and keeps going.

Now, after the ride I took it indoors and gave the saddle a thick layer of leather grease and I will polish it tomorrow once it has soaked in. The rear hub is cleaning up nicely as well. Just a bit of water and aluminum foil and it's like new again.
The "H" after the F.&S., according to this post on Rijwiel.net means the hub is also from 1965. So that's a nice confirmation.



pre-treatment and a silhouette



Starting to polish the hub


Polished with some foil on the left, untreated on the right


The next couple of updates will probably take some time. I do plan on going with the Sturmey Archer dynohub in the front but I don't have a 36H hub at the moment but IIRC these are the exact same shell as the ubiquitous Sturmey Archer AB drum brake hub, just with 4 holes in them...
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Old 11-22-21, 03:19 PM
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My dad end nineteen forties ridin' a similar bike.
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Old 11-22-21, 04:16 PM
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Doing some more research on the rear hub atm. Apparently Hanseline bremsmantelfett is one of the best high-temperature greases you can use for these hubs. You can find it for about €10. The later steel brake shoes (instead of brass) should use the Sachs grease but they are not that picky either way.
It's based on mineral oil, synthetic hydrocarbon oils and polyurea. It should work at a temperature range of -40C to + 160C (-40F to +320F) with a dropping point of 250C (482F), meaning it will run out of the hub when it gets that hot. But I would advise against doing long downhills on just a coaster brake. Then again, there are MTB dudes who race them and do actually heat them up to over 300C / 600F ! And of course Mon Bikes who sell a modified Shimano coaster brake hub with larger flanges and a cooler.

The user Fongers1952 on the OudeFiets forum pointed me in the right direction to find more information on the bike. According to him the model A was the cheapest of the four tour models (cheap to expensive: A < P < 1 < 8) but the differences weren't all that big. Here is an example of a No 1 from 1958. Not sure about the Model A, but the No. 1 was hfl 180.50 in 1959 (608.15 or $684.92 in today's money) which seems absurdly cheap by today's standards but then again labour was cheaper back then.


Mon Bikes Souped up coaster brake hub

Here you can find the original Dutch manual with a couple of diagrams.

Last edited by JaccoW; 11-22-21 at 04:42 PM.
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Old 11-22-21, 04:26 PM
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Love these bikes, and love seeing them cleaned up and brought back to life. It looks like it'll mostly clean up very nicely.
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Old 11-22-21, 04:27 PM
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These are tough bikes. They hold up remarkably well over time. This is a fun project.
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Old 11-28-21, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by JaccoW
So yesterday I received a pair of bicycles from one of my parents' friends and the most fun one might actually be this bog-standard looking Dutch bike.
It used to belong to one of their uncles and was apparently used as a police bike. It has the extremely relaxed geometry of the old English roadsters and while it is a little too small for me at 60cm it does ride extremely well. Though the very sprung saddle probably helps.

The frame number 1959744 tells me the bike is from 1965 but I will have to check the rest of the parts to see how true that is. The model name "A" does not show up anywhere online but it looks very similar to the Gazelle Trimsport and Impala Toer from the same year.

EDIT: The user Fongers1952 pointed me in the right direction. According to him the model A was the cheapest of the four tour models (cheap to expensive: A < P < 1 < 8) but the differences weren't all that big. Here is an example of a No 1 from 1958. Not sure about the Model A, but the No. 1 was hfl 180.50 in 1959 (608.15 or $684.92 in today's money)


Gazelle Trimsport

It is a fairly heavy steel frame with 28 inch / ETRTO 40x635mm / 700A wheels, coaster brake and dynamo lighting. Not to mention the fenders, varnished cloth chainguard and spoke guards, Lepper sprung saddle and cottered cranks. I bet there is even a very nice hardened steel Gazelle branded chainring under there.
The rear hub is a Torpedo coaster brake but I will have to check the exact type once I remove some of the rust..

Oh and virtually every single part has pin/box striping on it. Frame, fenders and even the rims. Gold on dark brown all over.

Future plans:
I'm not entirely sure where I want to take this project. On the one hand it is slightly too small for me, though I can ride it if I raise the saddle and handlebars, but on the other hand it is such a nice riding bike that it would be a shame to just flip it.
One thing I do know is that I want to overhaul all of the running parts and derust everything as good as possible. The chaincase is probably a lost cause but I can find high quality intact ones over here for relatively affordable prices.

I might want to rebuild the wheels while I am at it with modern stainless steel spokes (and brass washers <3). And maybe, just maybe, put a nice and shiny (SP?) dynamo hub in the front and stealth mod an LED setup in there.
Add some cream tyres and this should be good for another 56 years.

Questions:
One of the bigger questions is how to best preserve the original paint? I know boiled linseed oil should work well after removing rust and cleaning everything but wouldn't a clear coat of lacquer be better?

As far as I know it is impossible to replace the original shiny coat on the varnished cloth chainguard. Or is there something I can do? Especially the spoke guards would be nice to preserve.

All the chrome parts will probably receive a clean and polish with aluminum foil. Followed up with a coat of wax.

Pictures:
Now, without further ado:








I've restored a.pair of (single speed) Gazelle Sport Luxe models somewhat similar to yours. I think Gazelles are well-built, quality bikes and worth the effort to restore (or at least revive). Mine came with a chain case, which I modified by removing the sprocket cover, revealing a leaping gazelles crankset... way cool (see pics). Wondering if yours has these as well? I also rebuilt the wheel set with a 3-speed drum brake hub in the rear and a dyno hub I'm the front (also with drum brake).

Just love they way these bikes look. Congrats, it's a really cool Nike and I'm sure you'll do something really cool with it.

I actually repurposed the original headlight shell by inserting a b&m Dyno light into the chrome casing.

Leaping gazelles!!!
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Old 11-28-21, 10:59 PM
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Originally Posted by fabiofarelli


My dad end nineteen forties ridin' a similar bike.
Great photo!
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Old 11-29-21, 02:28 AM
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Originally Posted by RustyJames
Great photo!
Thanks. During the last half of the Second World War as a baker's hand he provided bread to hiding pilots with a bike like this (sorry Jacco).
Picture is not mine.

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Old 12-29-21, 09:15 AM
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Got one of the harder to get parts for the build today from a fellow enthusiast. A 1955 Sturmey Archer Dynohub in 36H.

I already had a 28H and a 32H model that I have been gathering over the past few years for the always suspended 1969 Gazelle Super Licht. If only silver 40H rims were cheaper to get here in Europe. But I digress.

Currently I'm on the fence on whether I want to disassemble both wheels for the hub and rims and rebuild them with the dynohub in the front. These black steel rims are awesome with their golden line but I can also understand some of the other collectors who would prefer to keep them intact.
Alternatively I could build entirely new wheels using the Cordo Rodi Westwood rims as they look the same (including gold pinstripes) and come in either the same 700B / ERTRO 635mm or the modern 700C / ERTRO 622mm size.
It would allow me to use a much wider variety of tyres and maybe even go wider than the stock 38mm. There is barely anything available in the 635mm size.
Something to ponder in the coming months I guess.

Gave the bike its first cleaning in ages and now it looks closer to the original black colour. My current thought is to chemically remove most of the rust and give it a clearcoat next spring.







Last edited by JaccoW; 12-29-21 at 09:24 AM.
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Old 12-30-21, 12:49 AM
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Missed this one over the last few months! Always glad to see a proper roadster getting a restomod - especially a newer Dutch variant that already has a handlebar positioned for actual upright riding, unlike most slack-angle Raleighs out there (exception: My '54 Superbe Tourist, but even that is shorter than what one will see on most opafiets).

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Old 03-26-23, 05:25 PM
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A new beginning

So spring of 2023 is on its way here, and the parts shortage of the pandemic is pretty much gone. One thing that held me back all this time was a lack of inventory of the Rodi Westwood rims in 622mm. Well, they still don't have them but I have found another alternative!

The Ryde V38 is a Westwood-style pinned alloy modern alternative (that still weighs a ton). All I need is to add the gold pinstriping myself. But if that's the worst of my issues? Well, besides actually building it. These Sturmey Archer hubs are notoriously hard to properly lace up, haha.
As for the spoke lengths, various calculators give the Westwood rim & Sturmey Archer GH6 dynohub combo a 282mm + 294mm spoke length.

Just ordered the parts and then we'll start building up the front. I will probably try and get my hands on a vintage coaster brake to replace the one in this bike... or I take it out of the rear wheel. A couple of the original spokes are broken anyway..
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