So I picked up this McBain Record from Hobart last week. Regular Bottles And Chains readers will recognise it from said blog:
Before I get to work getting it road worthy, I’m keen to piece together its history. The big question is whether it was indeed built by McBain or by some other frame builder then stickered up as a McBain.
From the few examples I can find on the internet, it is quite different - aero tubing, shimano track and fork ends, no holes around the track ends (which seems to be a McBain trait), and an odd size - 57tt/54st with very shallow gussets. There is no stamp on the BB that I can see, although it may be obscured by the surface rust, and no BB slots like I’ve seen on other alleged McBains.
As far as ‘Record’, I’ve only found two so far here and here, with a hint of it here.
Going on the components, I think it was put together early to mid eighties. (Shimano 600 cranks, Maillard ‘Gallo’ hubs, Dura Ace AX seat post and stem.)
I’ve contacted McBain Cycles in Hobart, but no response as yet.
^ Image on loan from Bottles And Chains
I bought this bike from Tassie, also aero tubing with the the same half lugs.
Sorry, I don’t know anything about it but I thought you might appreciate the pics. I could find out more if you are mad keen.
Unfortunately I never took delivery of the bike… I was told it was lost in transit.
^ Awesome! Similar looking forks too.
That sucks that you never got it. I would be keen to know more, but that’s totally up to you. Do you have the previous owner’s contact details?
I just sent him an email, I’ll post back if/when I get a reply.
Great looking bike!
As you know I am still having trouble confirming my bike so if you make any discoveries then ill be keen to hear about it.
What are your plans for it in the meantime?
Cheers mate, probably just pull it apart and see what needs replacing. Not in a desperate hurry to get in on the road, so I’m happy to take my time and do it properly.
That ‘11’ or ‘TT’ stamp on the BB shell has cropped up a few times on my searches, usually links back to Cecil Walker somehow.
Response from previous owner:
I bought the bike from Rod Leicester cycles in Burnie Tas about 1995/1996 second hand. It was silvery grey with black campagnolo stickers on the down tube and the campagnolo logo on the neck. Also a little green rubber seal that goes between the frame and the seat post that never really sat on there quite right. [i]
The original owner was someone like Tim Hall or Tim Hill. He is the only guy you’ll ever hear of that carried a mobile phone holder and a handgun on the handle bars of his road bike. Apparently it was for dogs that attacked him.[/i] [i]
Just after I bought the bike it went to Ray Appleby cycles for a service and some Mavic aero tubeless wheels.[/i] [i]
I raced it for the next few seasons in the Tasmanian Christmas carnival series and in the Tasmanian state title with little success.[/i] [i]
Quite a few years later without use I dragged it out of the shed.[/i]
That was a sad day.
The aforementioned mavic rims were corroded beyond repair. Can you imagine folding up a pair of those wheels and putting them in the bin? It’s not a nice feeling I’ll tell you.[i]
If you want to know more you could try Rod from Rod Leicester cycles in Burnie.[/i]
The phone number is: Ph (03) 6431 3530. Just ask him about the cyclist with a handgun. He’ll know who you’re on about and point you in the right direction.
^ That’s brilliant, thanks heaps.
So are you going to call Rod?
^ Was planning to, but I called Kate at McBain Cycles in Hobart who gave me some information…
Kate asked her Dad, Kevin McBain, about it and when she mentioned the Shimano track ends he said it wasn’t one of theirs. However, the colours are, so most likely somebody brought their frame in for a respray - apparently it was common for track cyclists back then to repaint their bike every season or two. She dated it mid 70s, which is earlier than I had estimated.
So it doesn’t look to be a McBain, and I’ll stab a guess that the other ‘Records’ aren’t either. I am intrigued that SanEsteban’s example was also located in Tassie, possibly another Tasmanian frame builder? (Apparently there was a few back in the day.) I’ll give Rod a call and see if he can shed any light on the builder.
The search continues…
Okay, so I called Rod and he was quite helpful. He seemed to recall a Simon Hall carried a starter’s cap gun with him to scare off dogs. He couldn’t remember the frame in question, but gave me a few clues about how I could track him down.
Awesome… if you could either post here or PM me with any other details, that would be great (previous owner would also like to be told).
^ Yep. Kate said she would put her research in an e-mail, and I’ll try to track down Simon Hall in the next few days.
Any chance you can PM me Kates email? Id love to hear what she has to say about my Mcbain.
It’s not a secret, see here.
Would you say that the 11 or TT stamp on the bottom bracket shell indicates it was built by George McDonald who made frames in his garage for Cecil Walker Bicycles? Just like Azz’s example here.
Okay, so I managed to contact Simon Hall who was the character who used to palp a pistol on his bike…not a starters gun, though. Unfortunately he couldn’t recall the silvery grey track bike with black Campagnolo stickers, and said it was unlikely it was his - most of his stable are white Colnagos. The aero tubing didn’t ring any bells either.
His brother, Ian Hall, had a chrome track frame, but Simon didn’t think it had aero tubing.
So I’ve hit a dead end. I’m not sure if Simon Hall is the same person as Tim Hill or Tim Hall, I was really running with the handgun thing.
(As a side note; Simon has a stable full of Colnagos, road and track, that haven’t been ridden since he retired. He pulled one out recently to get serviced ready for riding, and Grant Rice told him not to ride it as it is worth too much! I asked if he would consider selling any, he wouldn’t.)
Well, it’s interesting at least.
To confirm Ian Hill is Simon Hall’s brother? Or are they both Hill or Hall?
Did you happen to ask if they were tall? The red frame had a 63cm seat tube.
A bit of speculation… Ian (which could easily sound like Tim as the memory fades) could have given the bike to Simon to take to sell at Rod’s shop. Not being Simon’s bike, he might not have paid close enough attention to whether it was chrome or painted silver.
If Ian is tall enough, I reckon he dunnit.
^ Oops! Yeah, I meant Ian Hall…that’s what I get for early morning posting.