The Raleigh gets a new seat and old pannier

I decided to go with a black Brooks B67S saddle (earlier discussion, here). The B66 and B67 were the standard seats that came on the Superbes; after surveying many photos of original Superbes, it looked like both black and brown were common colors. I went with the black because it matches the grips, which are the original grips (which have the Raleigh crest on them), despite a few cracks, and I just have this thing about the grips matching the seat color.

I looked for weeks for the right panniers. My initial favorite was the Brooks Brick Lane roll-up pannier set, until I found out it was made in China. I just can't justify the dear price for an off-shore make; I have no problem with the made-in-England Brooks products being expensive (such as the saddle).

I wanted the right look for the age and condition of the bike—nothing too shiny, no plastic buckles, no reflector tape, but also not too home-made looking. Duluth Pack in Minnesota makes a nice set, but they were just a little too plain (I know, picky).

Then I hit on an idea: I had my old, well-loved Filson Field Bag (large), which attaches easily to the Raleigh rack via the brass D-rings and leather straps. A simple modification to add an attachment at the bottom, and I'll be set with an easy, appropriate bag-pannier for about-town.

Raleigh gets some new (old) parts

1972 Raleigh Superbe by ConserVentures
1972 Raleigh Superbe, a photo by ConserVentures on Flickr.

Our 1972 Raleigh Superbe got some TLC today. New tires (Panaracer 26 x 1 3/8 Col de la Vie, from Harris Cyclery), plus a rack, electric tail light (not yet wired), rear reflector and kickstand, all from vintage Superbes, all eBay finds.

Also gave the old paint some polishing and wax. Still more to do . . . but it's really starting to shape up the way we envisioned—refurbished, rather than restored, a city bike for exploring favorite towns, shopping, grabbing coffee, or joining Tweed Rides.

Next upgrade will be a Brooks 66 or 67 sprung saddle (which came standard on Superbes), though can't decide on the color (black or dark brown?). Although the grips are old and slightly cracked, they are originals and we're loath to replace them. And then some panniers . . . hard to decide. Carridice makes some nice ones. And still looking for an original headlight and pump.

Brooks tool pouch

Brooks tool pouch by ConserVentures
Brooks tool pouch, a photo by ConserVentures on Flickr. [iPhone with Instagram processing]

I splurged on a new accessory for the Superbe. An outrageously expensive gorgeous Brooks leather tool pouch. It does not quite fit the non-stock seat (Superbes came with sprung Brooks B66 saddles). Currently looking for a vintage B66.

Flickr: http://flic.kr/p/cezf7J