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Unknown year Rijwielens Mertens frame

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Unknown year Rijwielens Mertens frame

Old 12-17-21, 12:55 AM
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le bici di jaco
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Unknown year Rijwielens Mertens frame

Rijwielens Mertens frame for track. Not sure of decade made (50s?). I have a complete set of parts that I believe are pretty much correct for the frame period. Frame was repainted when received. This was purchased a couple years ago from a decent guy who is/was a BF member. Bought another frame from him when overseas. Is this the same as Martens, but different spelling? I could not find any infomation about it (as it seems to be with many frames I now have).
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Last edited by le bici di jaco; 12-17-21 at 02:48 AM. Reason: Typo
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Old 12-17-21, 01:03 AM
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Freakin' shweet. What components do you have to build it up with?
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Old 12-17-21, 02:46 AM
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Originally Posted by SoccerBallXan View Post
Freakin' shweet. What components do you have to build it up with?
Still digging parts out of my storage unit; looking for bar, stem, saddle restraint turnbuckle, crankset/BB, chain, cog and lockring. Found: Lyotard "Marcel Berthet" pedals, Weinmann tubular rims, Bayliss Wiley hubs, Ideale saddle (recovered) & clamp, Titan alloy post.
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Last edited by le bici di jaco; 12-17-21 at 12:32 PM. Reason: Incorrect component make
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Old 12-17-21, 03:33 AM
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The seatpost is a Titan, made in Tielt, Belgium. They were famous for their seatposts, bars and stems.

The "Recueil du cycle et de la moto", a list of Belgian bicycle manufacturers from 1953, does not contain the name Mertens. Today there are a few bike shops called Mertens, but there doesn't seem to be much history on their websites.

Perhaps Munny can shed some light on this machine?
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Old 12-17-21, 12:39 PM
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Thanks @non-fixie for the seat post ID. It was somewhat worn near the logo and I could not discern the make. I would like to find another one in better condition. I corrected that previous post. Hopefully I will have the rest of the parts together shortly. No idea what the headset is and I don't remember the steel bar having anything on it to identify its manufacturer.
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Old 12-17-21, 01:09 PM
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About Titan, their stuff was the default choice for many pro riders and ambitious amateurs in the Low Countries during the '50's and '60's. This is the ubiquitous bar-stem combo that many of us know from local racing machines. This particular example dates from ~1950:

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Old 12-17-21, 01:29 PM
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thanks very much for sharing this beautiful frameset

found this image puzzling; appears a transfer was applied over the head tube and behind the headplate

do not recall seeing something such as this previously:

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are the WEINMANN rims you have wood-filled?


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Last edited by juvela; 12-17-21 at 01:31 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 12-19-21, 02:35 AM
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@non-fixie would that Titan seat post be something that was available in the 50s or earlier? I am trying to determine frame age based on what were original (I assume such as I was told) parts.

@juvela same question as above relating to the rims; are they 50s design or earlier? The rims are indeed "wood-filled".

The lines showing on the head tube were due to the removal of a reproduction decal that was in place after the frame was repainted and before the clear coat applied. The original head badge was too torn up, corroded, and unable to be properly mounted regardless of aesthetics. The decal, after being clear coated, was later removed and then the present badge was installed. There is now an area on the head tube that is not clear coated where the decal was located, and thus the tell-tale lines where the clear coat stops (you can feel the missing layer of clear coat). I am not sure if it can be buffed to remove them; it is not really noticeable under normal light conditions or at a couple feet away.

Other notes: the Lyotard pedals shown are not the original. They were some NOS I got with a bunch of parts; the originals are Lyotards (got them somehwere in storage), but not Berthet style.
The saddle has been recovered with a handmade replacement piece, but utilizing the original Ideale frame and adjustment hardware. It is quite thick compared to the original stock leather (I have another Ideale saddle to compare it to) and would be suitable for trimming into a 'Swallow' style while still be supportive enough; at least for my weight.
B-W hubs are different flange sizes (front smaller), rear is threaded for fixed cog and freewheel.
Bar/stem: no markings
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Last edited by le bici di jaco; 12-19-21 at 11:12 AM.
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Old 12-19-21, 06:06 AM
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Originally Posted by le bici di jaco View Post
@non-fixie would that Titan seat post be something that was available in the 50s or earlier? I am trying to determine frame age based on what were original (I assume such as I was told) parts.
Titan started in 1920, manufacturing complete bicycles. They teamed up with Cyrille Van Hauwaert in 1924, and because of Cyrille's fame they decided shortly afterward to let him do the bikes and focus on parts, mainly stems and bars. So yes, they would have been available in the 1950's.

Titan were quite famous and there is a yearly C&V race in the streets of Tielt, the "Grote Prijs Guidon Titan":



There is a fellow C&V enthusiast and bike collector who is from Tielt and probably knows all there is to know about Titan. These are some of his bikes. The historic information above I got from him. He might be able to help if you need information or specific parts.
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Old 12-20-21, 06:48 AM
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The rest of the components:
Lyotard pedals originally bought with the bike; unknown model.
Bayliss-Wiley "5B" BB.
46t skiptooth crankset; unknown make.
14t skiptooth rear cog; stamped, but can't make out the numbers/letters.
Saddle restraint turnbuckle; unknown make.
Chain with either an "N", a "Z", or possibly a stylized "R" in an 8 point "star" or cog ring symbol; unknown make.

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Last edited by le bici di jaco; 12-21-21 at 05:56 PM.
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Old 12-20-21, 06:57 PM
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Photos of components as previously described:
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Old 12-30-21, 03:44 PM
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chain -

the eight-pointed star/burst symbol with the character in the centre is for Wippermann
of Germany

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this firm also produced spokes, pedals and cogs...and at one time brakes as well -





Wippermann pedal model Nr. 8 -

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Old 01-20-22, 09:00 AM
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Thank you juvela for the chain references.
I cannot make out any "W" on my chain, but the rest of the symbol seems to match, as well as the construction. Is it possible Wipperman manufactured them for another brand? Here is another photo showing different plates; not much better of a view, but still does not appear to be a "W".

Last edited by le bici di jaco; 01-20-22 at 09:05 AM. Reason: Add photo
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Old 01-20-22, 08:35 PM
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I had been referred to the Koers Museum van de Wielersport in order to help provide some information regarding the country of origin (Belgium or Netherlands) of the brand, and if the brand name was also the manufacturer of the frame. The response came back as unknown until further research was done on it. So I have someone in Belgium working on this frame, as well as Rijwielen Martens in Flanders trying ro help. Unfortunately, Martens is in the process of closing their business this month after 80 yrs, and Koers is in their off-season so I don't expect any results in the short term. Not sure why I have ended up with multiple frames of obscure lineage, but it does make the bike more interesting than just slapping some parts on a frame.
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