Tuesday, November 18, 2014


I have just finished building up a very sweet 1970's
Alf Engers Shorter TT replica.
 This is of course the Shorter that
built Alf (King) Engers 25 mile TT bike's throughout 
  most of his time trial career.
King Alf was the first RTTC member to go under the 50 minute 
mark for the 25 mile (40 km) TT  when he did a 49m 24s 
ride in 1978, averaging over 49 kph.

Alf was one of the early English riders to start drilling 
and milling components to reduce weight,
insist on super super short wheelbase frames,
 and super big chainrings,
all of which Alan Shorter was happy to supply.
Alf's drilled and milled Shorter.
Alf had a really interesting and some times explosive career, 
he was always at war with the officials of the RTTC.
 Definitely well worth following up and reading about
if you don't already know about his Cycling career. 
There is a good contemporary interview with Alf here

The 8.6 Kg Alf Engers Shorter replica.

Ever since I picked up an old set of drilled and chopped 
universal brake calipers I have wanted to put together a 
replica of Alf's pink Shorter TT bike, so was really pleased
to find this one here in New Zealand.
Apart from the headset,and bars, everything else
on the frame was binned or relegated to the parts bin.
But the frame...well the frame was everything I had been
looking for in a 1970's style English TT frame.
Super short wheel base
Shot in seat stays
Drilled lugs and drop outs (short Campagnolo)
 And this very cool lightened  B/B shell.

I stripped the paint off the frame, and repaired a few
minor dents.

Had my local auto paint shop mix me up
a special brew of Shorter (Mercier) pink pearl in base coat
and the next thing you know...
...you have one of the coolest bikes to ever roll on two wheels.

 To be honest I haven't even ridden this one yet,
which is strange for me, as that is usually the first thing
I do when I have finished a build, but this time I am just enjoying
having it sitting in the workshop at the moment.

The original drilled and chopped universal calipers that started
my sad obsession with English TT bikes.

 Huret Jubilee-SR Royal and Campagnolo SR pedals
To me this drilled bike gear is like twin four barrel Holleys
on a 426 Hemi, pure Hot Rod.
Well maybe not quite the same, but you know the vibe
is pretty similar.
Weinmann levers and 400/500 calipers where
default choice of many TT riders, I don't  think
they stop you all that well, but are featherweight...
Campagnolo H/F hubs, Super Champion arc en ciel rims.
28 tied soldered front, 32 rear.

Check out those cool white Panasonic tubs, I got them from
The tracksupermarket in Japan, and they only took 3 days to
get here!...thanks guys.

 Sure is pretty.
I was surprised when I weighed the finished bike,
  ready to ride, it was only 8.6 kg's Alan Shorter
would have been proud.
My homage to Alan Shorter and Alf Engers.

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