Vintage 1970's Lambert of England

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
Post Reply
mtborlando
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 2:47 am

by mtborlando

My neighbor passed away recently and I was given this cool old bike by a family member that was clearing out the leftovers from a garage sale. Not feeling comfortable taking it for free I gave the nice old gentleman a little beer drinking money and walked home wondering: "what they hell am I going to do with this thing?". Lifting the bike up while I walked, I was surprised at just how light this thing was.

I aired up the tires, wiped the shellac of dust off the seat and rode it around my driveway a little. The old linkage and components were rusted pretty well in place so I decided to hit them with penetrating oil along with the chain and anything else that was once silver but now encrusted-brown. I rode the bike around and the dry rotted tires held, the gears shifted and as embarrassing as it was to be seen on this thing, I still had fun.

I put the bike away thinking this was nothing more than some off-brand bike purchased at the Service Merchandise in the 1970's. I was right about the 1970's part but did a little research and found this bike had a rather interesting history.

Digging through Google I found things like "dangerous death fork", "superlight frame 3.5lb " and "aerospace technology"

I also found some Viscount and Lambert bikes in eBay with listings ranging from 100-1200 dollars.

I am thinking I would like to restore it or possibly convert it to a vintage SS. If anyone knows anything about these bikes and would like to share, I would love to hear from you.
Now I am wondering what the hell am I going to do with this Lambert of England bike, death-fork and all....

Image
Image
Image
Image

by Weenie


User avatar
HammerTime2
Posts: 5422
Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 4:43 pm
Location: Wherever there's a mountain beckoning to be climbed

by HammerTime2

That sure doesn't look like the original racing saddle. I bought a Lambert 10 speed (total) for $150 in June 1974. It came with a nice vinyl covered plastic (nylon) saddle. The rear shifting was good once I replaced the piece of junk Simplex Prestige RD with a $9 SunTour V-Luxe RD. Don't ride it with the death fork. I did, but got lucky, and replaced the fork in 1984 (required new headset to be compatible with the fork, so I was told) - it was a backup bike since 1980. I never rode it in real mountains. I unloaded the bike in 1997. A lot of the stuff, such as cranks, are proprietary and maybe not so easy to replace. Milremo rims, take that Envy, ha, ha. Be careful not to cut yourself on those rusty clips. The Lambert toe clips and straps are missing from the pictured bike. My bike originally came with 52-42 by 14-16-18-21-24 - the pictured bike looks like it has a bigger little chainring than 42.

mtborlando
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 2:47 am

by mtborlando

thanks for sharing HammerTime2, the saddle will be the first thing to go, then the fork, well really the only thing I want to use is the frame and possibly the crank, but the cranks are prone to breakage too.

I guess I could box everything up taken off the frame and set it aside for when or if I decide to sell it, starting to look like a lot of work

User avatar
HammerTime2
Posts: 5422
Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 4:43 pm
Location: Wherever there's a mountain beckoning to be climbed

by HammerTime2

In 1978 or 1979 something happened to my crank to put it out of commission - I don't remember what - there was no violent breakage though. The bike was out of commission for a month while I waited to get some part from Yamaha (Viscount), and I had a bike shop do the repairs. That was the only thing to fail on me on that bike.

Mine was a Lambert Grand Prix, with clinchers.

New bikes are a lot better, and a lot less pain. But it was light for its price and time - I guess that's when I started some form of WW'ism.

mm1
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 6:44 pm

by mm1

Cool. A couple of mates at school had these branded as Viscount Aerospace and I was deeply jealous. From memory they first came out in 1975 '76 and were marketed as a value alternative to building up a bike on a frame from your local builder, which is how it was done in those days. Alternative brands offering complete "race" bikes were Raleigh / Carlton (same thing really after Raleigh bought Carlton) and Falcon - these didn't go much above 531 (plain gauge) main tubes - my Carlton was hi-ten (i.e. seam welded) tubes, steel chain set etc, the Viscount / Lambert was super lightweight by comparison.

One of my aforementioned mates also had a (2nd hand) Chater-Lea - fitted with Chater Lea chainset and pedals etc, a collectors item even in the 70's, with frame and components made in the UK!

bm0p700f
in the industry
Posts: 3369
Joined: Sat May 12, 2012 7:25 pm
Location: Glermsford, Suffolk U.K
Contact:

by bm0p700f

Some lamberts when they were lambert had Lamberts own kit on it. Lambert made there own cranks, there own hubs and there hubs had cartridge bearings in the late 70's. They did everything themselves which may be part of the reason they went out of business.

Nice old bikes. Restore it and ride. Get rid of that saddle though.

Hawkwood
Posts: 264
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 4:27 pm

by Hawkwood

I've got a 1970s write-up on Viscount Aerospace bikes somewhere. As another poster has said they tried to make a lot of the components themselves, including a cotterless chainset that was held together with about 15-20 bolts!

by Weenie


MDH
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:13 pm
Location: England

by MDH

I have some of the alloy cranks. Basically a copy of the TA/Stronglight pattern.

Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post