Spanning several years, my work on this restoration project is now complete. This 1930’s (or possibly 1940’s) Peugeot came to me like this:
The frame was pretty dirty, but seemed otherwise intact, with all the brazing in good shape and no serious dings or dents. It is made with Vitus “Rubis” tubing, a type used on higher end bicycles in the 30’s and 40’s. As many enthusiasts know, Peugeot serial numbers appeared to follow no rhyme or reason and cannot be used to successfully date older models. So, the main clues to its provenance are the “H” in front of the serial number, the tubing type, the decals, and the components. The drive side chain stay has a braze-on for a derailleur spring, but when I purchased the bike, it came with a Simplex Tour de France derailleur, a model which doesn’t use such a spring. I think this was a later upgrade to the bike, as these derailleurs were first introduced in the late 40’s.
In two previous posts I documented the process used to create a rideable machine out of the original bike plus as many period-specific parts as I could source. I added 650b wheels, hammered fenders, a Henri Gauthier leather saddle, a polished aluminum stem, custom levers, and aluminum handlebar with wood grips. My final quest was to set up the lighting. I needed a full lighting system, and after going through a number of possible dynamos I finally found a Ducel fork mounted system that was NOS from the 50’s, that looked just about perfect.
Riding this bike is really fun – it is very comfortable with its super long wheel base and the 650b tires. It is quite the attention getter and conversation starter and was really rewarding to work on. Here is the bike now, and it will be up for sale in my new on-line store – coming soon.