Sunday With Greg

Last Sunday I had the pleasure of hanging out with my good friend Greg Davis, a fellow cyclist and collectorHe was one of the people who helped fuel my passion for cycling - he patiently taught me to build wheels, explained the difference between clincher and tubular, and taught me all sorts of little intricate details about different bikes and components.  I remember bringing my old Nishiki Custom Sport to him because I was having a hard time getting the front wheel back on, and he explained how Nishiki for a while used 90mm dropouts on their front forks on certain bikes.  Then he showed me how to expand a fork.  

He's also done quite a bit for the Silicon Valley cycling scene, and helped to start the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition and Bicycle Exchange

Greg has an amazing collection and a whole slew of stories, and I finally got to capture some of his bicycles. 

Greg in his element.

That green beauty is a fillet brazed Schwinn Superior.  It's heavy, but fast.  I arrived right after he'd taken it on a ride through the hills.  And those are not 650b wheels you're looking at - Greg rides anywhere from a 62 to a 65 cm frame!  This is the bike that Greg plans on modeling a future dream bike after - he told me about his affinity for Schwinn, and how he loves the little details, like the fork crown. 
My Trek, Greg's Superior, and a glimpse of a very unique yellow Scwinn Paramount in the back.
The drivetrain on this beauty, with a Huret derailleur.
In the shop, I got to hear the story of the Rossin that went geochaching and then through a car wash, to get cleaned up enough in time for a show.  Apparently the brothers that Greg went geocaching with saw the bike cleaned up afterwards, and were arguing over whether or not it was the same bike.   Just about all of these bikes have a story, or stories, I should say.  My favorite is still the snake-tandem story. 
The car-wash Rossin.
There are an insane amount of beautiful bikes hanging in the shop, and Greg rides just about all of them.  Most of them are steel, with one aluminum Cannondale tandem and one Specialized carbon bike thrown in for good measureThey range from Hetchins, to Cinelli, Bianchi, 3Rensho, and more.  He does all of the building and maintenance as well, including the lacing and gluing of his preferred tubular tires.

A Hetchins and a Specialized - two very contrasting bikes.
As pretty as they are, he rides (and tells amazing stories) about each one!  They're so well cared for I would have never guessed what some of these bikes had been through.
There were so many bikes it was impossible to frame them all.
But it's not just bikes  - Greg's collection includes just about every part imaginable, from wooden rims to ancient cranksets, and even a respectable collection of headbadges.  Not to mention the tools to do just about anything imaginable to any type of bike.  Greg's on par with Sheldon Brown, in my opinion.
The workbench of champions. 
We talked about rides and bikes for a while, including the replica of that Green Schwinn that he's planning to build, and the reason why you should reglue your tubulars every year (I got to see the rims from that related accident :/), as well as a really clever way to deal with cable guides.  Then we got to see a very early Raleigh.
Fascinating bike with an interesting setup and generator hubs!
We dated it to 1968, based on the hub.  Check out the dual spaced cable guides!
I have to thank Greg - throughout the whole ordeal of me learning about bikes ("you mean I shift with these things?") to where I am now, Greg is always willing to help me learn and is always patient enough to explain things to me, as menial a question as it might be.  So, thank you for the inspiration!  And as always - ride on. 

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