1955 Viking Severn Valley – SN 672

 

Specification:

  • Serial No: 672
  • Frame: Reynolds 531 butted tubing, forks and stays; Seat Tube: 23″ ctt; Agrati dropouts
  • Crankset: Stronglight 49D with TA chainrings – Note: later version cranks fitted temporarily pending renovation of the early style cranks. Original Gnutti cotterless crankset replaced by original owner
  • Pedals: 1970s Maillard (temporary – non-original)
  • Gears: Campagnolo Gran Sport front and rear derailleurs; clamp-on down tube rear gear lever; handlebar front gear lever; 5-speed freewheel.
  • Wheels: Fiamme sprint rims on Campagnolo Gran Sport hubs – Note; non-original wheels of same spec fitted pending renovation of the original wheels
  • Brakes: Weinmann Type 730 side-pull
  • Handlebars and Stem: GB Maes bars on GB Hiduminium stem
  • Saddle and Seatpost: Brooks B15 (new) on aluminium alloy post, 27.2 mm diameter

Comments:

The bicycle was supplied in April 1955 to the above specification except where noted.  It had one owner prior to the current owner.  The frame has been refinished with accurate reproductions of the original transfers.  It originally had half-chrome forks and stays, but the decision was made not to try to polish and re-plate.  Agrati rear dropouts normally have a gear hanger for Simplex or Benelux gears, but this had been removed at the factory (evidenced by the chromium plate over the cut marks) in order to fit the separate Campagnolo gear hanger.  During renovation a Campagnolo gear hanger was brazed on to the dropout.  Interestingly the frame had a redundant brazed-on boss for a Benelux rear gear shift lever – from new, the bicycle was fitted with a clamp-on Campagnolo lever, so the boss was never used and it was removed during the renovation.

Other features of the frame are the cable stop for the front derailleur handlebar control, the boss for a CO2 inflator behind the seat tube and a double cable stop at the front of the top tube – these are only required on frames that use the same front derailleur shift cable routing used on some Tour of Britain and Ian Steel models.

The bicycle was originally purchased for racing but had been gradually demoted to winter hack, with the tubular tyre rims being replaced by 27″ HP rims. The renovation is more in keeping with the original intent.

A minor mystery is the pure numeric serial number without a letter “V” prefix as stamped on both earlier and later Severn Valley frames.  It leaves me wondering whether dropouts were stamped prior to assembly and whether the dropouts on this frame were originally destined for a Tour of Britain frame which would likely have had that number in that time frame.  Agrati dropouts were a common fitment on Tour of Britain frames, less so on Severn Valleys.

More Photographs:

 

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley

 

1955 Viking Severn Valley