Author Topic: Revell 531c Frame  (Read 4834 times)

The Mechanic

Revell 531c Frame
« on: August 05, 2010, 10:59:42 AM »
I have just purchased an old bike.  It is a Revell and, according to the frame sticker was supplied by Beta Bikes London NW6.  The frame is 531c throughout with fork blade stickers as well as on the seat tube.  It has Sun Tour mechs and Weinman side pull brakes. Has anyone heard of these bikes as I can't find any reference to them on the web.  The 531 decal design suggests late 70s or early 80s

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2010, 11:00:48 AM »
Freewheel used to sell the Revell Romany tourer.  That would be the mid-80s, when the first Ridgebacks were in the same catalogue.  In fact, we saw one a couple of weeks ago between Watlington and Britwell Salome.

I don't know much else about them, but they seem pretty good.
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Wowbagger

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Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2010, 12:09:46 PM »
Revell bikes were doing a "hard sell" about 30 years ago. The company used to issue a glossy catalogue and their bikes did indeed look lovely. That was about the time that the Viscount Aerospace was quite popular.
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clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2010, 12:40:15 PM »
The sports bike Revell was called a Rapide, and was made from 531 or 501.  Clearly 531c would be top of the range.
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hellymedic

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Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2010, 12:48:59 PM »
Beta Bikes -> Madison -> Freewheel. 275 West End Lane NW6 has been a bike shop for as long as I can remember and is now Cycle Surgery.
Revell was one of the Madison marques. I think they were quite good.

The Mechanic

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2010, 02:07:41 PM »
Thanks for the info.  I will see if I can find a frame number and do some further research.  The frame has large flange QR hubs and Rigida 27" rims.  I will get more details when I get the chance to have a detailed look. 

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2010, 02:52:11 PM »
The first "proper" road bike I got was a Revell Rapide in the early 80's. It was 531c throughout I think with a Shimano groupset.
It didn't look at all like that in the photographs

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2010, 03:47:04 PM »
I think there was also a Revell Ritmo.

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2010, 03:49:06 PM »
Weren't Revell touring frames designed so that the rear wheel didn't have to be dished?

Mr Larrington

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Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2010, 09:13:59 AM »
Weren't Revell touring frames designed so that the rear wheel didn't have to be dished?

Mine wasn't - I've got a Romany frame from circa 1985.  ISTR reading that Revell frames were actually made by Mercian, but do not know whether this is akersherly troo.
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Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2010, 09:42:40 AM »
ISTR reading that Revell frames were actually made by Mercian, but do not know whether this is akersherly troo.
I bought my Mercian frame from Freewheel some time around 83/84, so there was some connection between the two outfits. For some reason I always had it in mind that the Revell frames were built by the same people who built Coventry Eagle frames.

The Mechanic

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2010, 10:30:33 AM »
Although it was advertised as a tourer in the local rag, it is actually a racer as ther are only braze ons for mudguards and one bottle cage.  I have had a look and there is a long frame number on the underside of the BB.  I did not have time to make a note of it but I will do so tonight and see if it means anything.  Apart from the tyres, which are shot, and a drop of oil on the chain, it seems rideable.  Rear mech is Sun Tour Superb.  Not sure if that is anything significant but it looks in good nick.

PS - I think I am starting to become a bike collecting geek :o

border-rider

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2010, 04:38:32 PM »
Although it was advertised as a tourer in the local rag, it is actually a racer as ther are only braze ons for mudguards and one bottle cage.

Very common in the 70s/early 80s.  My Harry Hall "club tourer" (what these days they'd call an audax frame) has similar.

Quote
Rear mech is Sun Tour Superb.  Not sure if that is anything significant but it looks in good nick.

Good mech, that.  Top-end Suntour at the time, and considered a bit of a (bargain) classic.  

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2010, 06:07:12 PM »

Quote
Rear mech is Sun Tour Superb.  Not sure if that is anything significant but it looks in good nick.

Good mech, that.  Top-end Suntour at the time, and considered a bit of a (bargain) classic.  

No bargain anymore. Too many people have discovered that Suntour Superbe was (and is) top end. Especially the early 90-ies Superbe Pro is selling for Campa prices at Ebay.

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2010, 06:57:35 PM »
Suntour Superbe is lovely - you can still get the rear screw-on freewheel hubs - I used one recently in a restoration for a friend.  It was a really nicely made bit of kit - very much like all-metal Record was a few years ago. 

The Mechanic

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2010, 08:18:17 PM »
Sorry guys but I have double checked and the rear mech is, in fact, a Sun Tour Cyclone.  The frame number is SE830638.  I have tried googling it but no joy.  Anyone any ideas?  Is the a national database of frame numbers?  

The 531 decal has the TI logo on it so I think that makes is post 1977 according to what I have read on another forum.  

border-rider

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2010, 08:20:11 PM »
Cyclone's good too

I had it on my first ever halfway-decent bike in 1981.

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #17 on: August 06, 2010, 08:48:29 PM »
Cyclone rear mechs usually have a little bit more capacity as Superbe rear mechs. So you can have slightly smaller gears with a Cyclone rear mech.

Sigurd Mudtracker

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #18 on: August 06, 2010, 09:02:31 PM »
My Moulton AM originally came with a Cyclone rear mech (still have it but not on the bike), so it must be good kit  8)

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #19 on: August 06, 2010, 09:13:04 PM »
"The frame number is SE830638.  I have tried googling it but no joy.  Anyone any ideas?  Is the a national database of frame numbers?  "

SOME frame numbers have a meaning/logic/code, some do not. Unless yours is from "1983" it probably falls in the latter category. And no, usually no means of interpreting the number without the manfrs/retailers records - almost certainly long gone.

It's either a nice frame or it isn't: provenance not really relevant!
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Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #20 on: August 07, 2010, 02:07:45 PM »
Beta Bikes -> Madison -> Freewheel. 275 West End Lane NW6 has been a bike shop for as long as I can remember and is now Cycle Surgery.
Revell was one of the Madison marques. I think they were quite good.
Freewheel came before Madison, I worked for the 'Freewheel mail order catalogue' (which initially was above the shop in West End Lane) at what was then the Madison warehouse in Horseshoe close near the start of the M1, as the wholesale side grew, especially when they became the Shimano distributor, they decided to finish with their retail side. One of my many roles was as the buyer, the 'Revel Romany' had a standard off the peg version as well as a custom option; the latter were built by none other than Dave Yates back when he was one of the owners at M Steel in Newcastle, before he moved to Coningsby, Lincoln where he still builds frames; see www.daveyatescycles.co.uk

Paul_Smith
www.corridori.co.uk

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #21 on: August 07, 2010, 03:23:43 PM »
Was Richard Ballantine involved?

Paul Smith SRCC

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Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #22 on: August 07, 2010, 03:41:50 PM »
Was Richard Ballantine involved?
As in the Revell Romany? Not as far a I'm aware, I thought he used an 'F W Evans'; that said there maybe an indirect link with that bike to the Revell Romany as Dave Yates/M Steel at the time built for many retailers, including where I used to work at Pearson Cycles, Dave may have also built the ' F W Evans' as well, infact if my memory serves me correctly he did, along with Condor cycles and I dare say others.

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The Mechanic

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #23 on: October 27, 2010, 11:54:34 AM »
Yippee!  I have just had confirmation from Grant at Mercian that this frame is indeed..a Mercian.  I have bought a few items like new brakes and BB and will rebuild it and try it out on the road.  If it rides well I will get the frame renovated.  Since I now know it is a Mercian I think it will be worth it.   I will post a pic tomorrow as I don't have it on this computer.

Re: Revell 531c Frame
« Reply #24 on: October 27, 2010, 02:02:00 PM »
I'd have been content with it being a Revell, though it's nice to know Mercian built it. I remember Revell from the 1980s, & although I can't speak from personal experience, never having had one, they had a decent reputation.

Please don't re-badge it as a Mercian, & lose its history.
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