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Viscount/Lambert owners

Old 10-30-09, 09:45 AM
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So are you saying it basically rides like a typical sport-touring bike?
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Old 10-30-09, 10:07 AM
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Sure.

And if you fit a 56cm c-t-c, you are welcome to come and try it out.
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Old 10-30-09, 10:27 AM
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I do fit a 56, though I'm nowhere near Michigan! Thanks for the offer. I figure I'll get a chance around here eventually.

I just found out that a nearby acquaintance of mine owns an old Raleigh International, which I've also been dying to try, so I'll be able to check that off.
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Old 10-30-09, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Iowegian
^Do you know about the infamous 'death fork' ? That sure looks like one to me....

yeah, i hear about it all the time. apparently there's a death fork ride too? what's that aboot?
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Old 10-30-09, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by adkenc
what's that aboot?
New England Death Fork Daredevils
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Old 10-30-09, 09:54 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
What do these bikes ride like? I've always been curious.
It's a very nice ride, smooth, supple, and comfortable. I'm not strong enough to flex the frame in any way, but others might be. I rode mine 65+ miles under the worst possible conditions (OK, it wasn't snowing, but everything else was falling from the sky in chilly buckets.......) with as few complaints as the situation required. My only beef is the very deep drop bars. I noticed that I was lower on the hoods than my riding partner was on the drops of his LHT.
AND no Biopace
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Old 10-31-09, 04:49 AM
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Originally Posted by top506
my only beef is the very deep drop bars.
+1
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Old 11-02-09, 01:15 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by noglider
What do these bikes ride like? I've always been curious.
The frame was made out of straight guage CroMo, and only weighed 3 pounds 12 ounces. That made for a light bike, but some folks also precieved it as being whippy.

When I am in a tall gear, and stomp down on the pedals, I can make the chain drag on the front derailluer cage. But that may be flex in the Viscount chainwheel as well as or instead of flex in the frame itself.

The ones who really found the frame whippy were those who tried to mount panniers or a child seat on them. They definitely demanded a light touch; I think many of the folks who broke crank spindles and frames over the years were heavy and strong; I was always on the thin side, and not that strong; and never had a single part failure to date.

It is also short wheelbase frame; you can catch the front wheel on the front of your toe clips if you turn your wheel sharply at the wrong time. The short wheelbase and light frame make it an obvious choice for a fixie; but I like mine just the way it is; thank you.

The end result is a light, highly responsive bike that urges you to go fast. I refer to it as the bicycle equivalent of a 1970s MG roadster. Like the MG, it could be beaten by more exotic hardware, and it was cursed with odd components; but it is a great wind-in-your-hair ride; especially on downhill runs.

I had few problems transitioning from a Schwinn Varsity, but getting back on it after being off a bike for 20+ years was a little scary. It took some time to get used to it again.

They were quite successfull as road race bikes. Back in 1976 in the US for instance, Mick Ives and other team mates took stock Aerospace Pros right off the bike shop floor, and beat campy equipped British bikes costing five times more! Mine weighed 21 pounds on the Viscount scale at the bike shop I worked at; when I converted the rims to 700C clinchers and changed out the "death fork", it still weighed around 23-24 pounds.

Originally Posted by adkenc
yeah, i hear about it all the time. apparently there's a death fork ride too? what's that aboot?
To quickly rehash for what sounds like the 1,000,000 time; the Lambert and later Viscount Aerospace GP and Aerospace Pro were equipped with an aluminum front fork. There were in fact three different fork designs used over the years:



Figure one shows the original Lambert design; which used a pair of pins in holes through the fork extension tube and the fork itself. The extension tube was heated and forced over the fork crown, and the pins installed as a furture measure. Figure two shows a latter design that had a single pin mounted from the side.

Both of these failed on rare occasions. When I first saw mine in the LBS I worked at; it was sitting in the corner with a broken fork; the impact also tweaked the top and down tubes at the steer tube joints. I was told he broke it by running into a curb (probably another upgrader from Schwinn Varsity, like yours truely; who tried to ride it like a Schwinn Varsity.) I replaced it with another aluminum fork, and kept riding it with no problems.

Figure 3 shows a latter design that used a steel insert. This one was not prone to failures at all; though the death fork recall by Yamaha was for all types of aluminum forks. I replaced mine with the heavy Tange fork sent to me by Yamaha.

In short, not everyone was afraid of the so-called "death forks", and continued to ride them in "death fork rides". I sometimes wished I did not replace mine; but it was the prudent thing to do.

Originally Posted by top506
My only beef is the very deep drop bars. I noticed that I was lower on the hoods than my riding partner was on the drops of his LHT.
When was younger, thinner, and more limber; I had no trouble I can remember riding on the drops. But now, I finally am able to ride on the hoods; but can't stay on the drops for very long.

I think someone asked about decals. Check this thread; it also has some insider information on Lambert/Viscount, and it's ultimate fate.

https://forum.ctc.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=21010

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Old 11-02-09, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by cb400bill
New England Death Fork Daredevils
The secret is out .... Neal Lerner, Mark (Top506) and I. We like to wait to hold rides in the early spring when the potholes are the deepest. Or this time of year when the piles of leaves hide the curbs and any other fork hazard.

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Old 11-02-09, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by jhefner
To quickly rehash for what sounds like the 1,000,000 time...
I believe he was referring to the guys who ride Viscounts as posted just above.
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Old 11-02-09, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by cb400bill
I believe he was referring to the guys who ride Viscounts as posted just above.
I'll take my chances with the death fork, of course, none of us would go out and hope for a fork failure. My odds of getting whacked by a distracted motorist are far greater than a Viscount fork failure ...

I've got two forks, one as illustrated in Figure 1 and one of Figure 3. I brought them over to show a friend who's a well known frame builder. He looked them over, shrugged, handed them back and said "I'd rather have those on my kids bikes then some of the crap you can buy at a local (big name discount) store."

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Old 11-10-09, 08:00 PM
  #62  
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Here is a nicely updated one:

https://velospace.org/node/12326



Frame / Size / Year:
21.5" Viscount, made in England
Handlebars / Stem:
(New) Schwinn Madison aero drops with Tektro levers, long-ass GB stem, carbon tape
Fork / Headset:
Fork of Death aluminum fork, OG
Front Wheel / Hub / Rim / Tire:
27" Rigida laced to Maillard, Serfas rubber
Rear Wheel / Hub / Rim / Tire:
27" Rigida laced to Maillard, Serfas rubber
Crankset / Bottom Bracket:
Viscount
Saddle / Seat Post:
Brooks B17, Birmalux candlestick
Pedals / Chain:
Kyotuto Top-Run steel, OG
Gearing / Chainring / Misc.:
6spd f/w/52t Viscount
Notes:

Fast bike, really tight on warm days with the dry weather tyres. Dia Compe 600's fore and aft (aft inverted per period), bars and levers off a new Schwinn Madison, original Viscount cranks a la TA. Suntour Vx derailleur. Very light. I used this bike to take silver in the 2008 Addison Cross-town Classic (8/31), suicide fork, bent front axle and all. (Axle has now been changed fork still suicidal).
I think I would have kept the small chainring and FD; though.
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Old 11-10-09, 08:40 PM
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My new commuter/ bad weather bike. Aero Space Pro

I removed the old pressed in bearings, and installed a threadless cartridge bottom bracket (it threads into itself).

Removed the death fork and installed a chrome one.

Put some fenders on and it's good to go. The Kashimax saddle is kind of rough though. I may put my b17 on- just worried about it getting stolen.

It gets Kenda knobby tires when the snow falls.

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Old 11-10-09, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by jhefner
Here is a nicely updated one:

https://velospace.org/node/12326



I think I would have kept the small chainring and FD; though.
That and the large flange hubs as well. I don't concur with the rear brake mounting, either.
OTOH, at least it's being ridden.
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Old 11-11-09, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by bbllaakke


My new commuter/ bad weather bike. Aero Space Pro

I removed the old pressed in bearings, and installed a threadless cartridge bottom bracket (it threads into itself).

Removed the death fork and installed a chrome one.

Put some fenders on and it's good to go. The Kashimax saddle is kind of rough though. I may put my b17 on- just worried about it getting stolen.

It gets Kenda knobby tires when the snow falls.
What ort of threadless bottom bracket did you install? Did you cut off the downtube and seat tube where they extend into the BB shell?
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Old 11-11-09, 09:59 AM
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It's a YST, pretty crappy but it's what we had at the shop.

https://www.biketoolsetc.com/index.cg...=YS-BB99368110

And yes, I filed down the intruding tubes with a rat tail file. It took about 10 min.

When I first installed the BB I only tightened it in there.... It came loose within 3 miles.

I then used loctite on the threads and inside the BB shell where it makes contact. I've done three 24 mile rides like this and so far so good!
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Old 11-11-09, 10:18 AM
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Thanks. I'll keep the YST in mind. At this point I just pressed in the bearings on my old Lambert.

FYI, Phil Wood makes a pressed in outboard bearing set, but it would cost a lot to go that route.

Hope the YST stays in place for you with the loctite.
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Old 11-11-09, 09:05 PM
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I saw that Phil Wood makes a spindle for about $100, I didn't see the bearings though.

However I know the bearings can be had for about $5. I found out they are called 103 CC - through research on this forum.

I had a good time restoring my aerospace pro. It weighs in at 25.3 pounds with the steel fork and clincher aluminum wheels. A nice ride, though I have noticed the frame is pretty flexy in the BB area.
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Old 11-11-09, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by bbllaakke
I saw that Phil Wood makes a spindle for about $100, I didn't see the bearings though.

However I know the bearings can be had for about $5. I found out they are called 103 CC - through research on this forum.
My LBS had the requisite 6003 bearings in stock, no problems.
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Old 11-11-09, 10:28 PM
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The 103 CC is an automotive bearing, so is able to take the abuse just about any cyclist can dish out, for years. I would be more worried about them drying out, than bearing failure. If a 6003 is readily available, then by all means buy it. I got a lot of weird looks and nuh uhs, when I asked at my LBS's.,,,,BD
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Old 11-12-09, 12:38 AM
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I don't quite understand how the YST works, but it looks cool.
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Old 11-12-09, 09:12 PM
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Originally Posted by bbllaakke
I saw that Phil Wood makes a spindle for about $100, I didn't see the bearings though.

However I know the bearings can be had for about $5. I found out they are called 103 CC - through research on this forum.

I had a good time restoring my aerospace pro. It weighs in at 25.3 pounds with the steel fork and clincher aluminum wheels. A nice ride, though I have noticed the frame is pretty flexy in the BB area.
The Phil Wood bearings are PW03. Those are 6003 2RS bearings. 35mm OD x 17mm ID x 10mm wide with rubber seals on both sides. I have no idea what a 103 CC bearings is, and they may work, but my Lambert came with 6003 2RS. I think you can buy them online for $5, but I could not find a 6003 2RS locally for less than $20. So I ordered a set of Phil bearings for my Klein through my LBS. The Phil bearings are really smooth.

The frames are really light, but they do flex if you're strong enough.

My original wheels are MilRemo rims laced with Robegel double butted spokes to the Lambert cartridge bearing hubs. Is that what you have?

They're actually pretty decent wheels. Unfortunately, I failed to store the wheels properly, so the spokes rusted. I plan to use the hubs to build a set of heavy duty 700c wheels. BTW, I measured the Lambert high flange hubs and they appear to be the same dimensions as the Campagnolo high flange hubs listed in the SpoCalc database.

Last edited by Steve530; 11-12-09 at 10:54 PM. Reason: corrected 8mm>10mm width
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Old 11-12-09, 10:26 PM
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The 103 CC bearing is much like any other sealed bearing. It has the rubber seals on both sides, and is the correct 10mm width, correct 17mm center, and correct 35mm diameter. They fit flush with the BB edge, and fit the width of the lockring slot. Not much more you could ask for. 8mm sounds too narrow. Maybe the Aerospace GP uses a wider bearing?,,,BD
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Old 11-12-09, 10:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Bikedued
The 103 CC bearing is much like any other sealed bearing. It has the rubber seals on both sides, and is the correct 10mm width, correct 17mm center, and correct 35mm diameter. They fit flush with the BB edge, and fit the width of the lockring slot. Not much more you could ask for. 8mm sounds too narrow. Maybe the Aerospace GP uses a wider bearing?,,,BD
I checked and the 6003 2RS is 10mm wide. Sorry for the confusion, I'll edit my post above.

It seems like the 103 CC bearing has the same dimensions as the 6003. I wonder what the difference is?
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Old 11-12-09, 11:49 PM
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Mine came with Birmalux rims (made in England by BiMetals). Not very nice rims but I do like the hubs. I also bought a couple of 6003 2RS bearings and was lucky enough to find a new spindle that will fit. In fact, I might have more than one since I found a pile of similar spindles in the recycle bin at my LBCo-op although I think most of them have some wierd dimensions that won't fit a 6003 bearing. I'm probably going to mostly part out the one I have and turn it into a single speed so if anyone is looking for some Viscount parts let me know and we can go from there.
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