Originally seen here:
Originally seen here:
This is a fabulous item that came into our shop recently and we are selling it on consignment for the original, and only owner, who bought this René Herse tandem in or around 1950. It is made of Reynolds 531 tubing and was originally chrome – but it was repainted by Cyclart in California, the absolute best bicycle frame painter and restorer around (cyclart.com).
The wheels are 650B, The Idéale 59 saddle in front and Idéale 77 in back are likely original. Front derailleur is shifted by pulley connected to a rod mounted on the front seat tube. Rear derailleur shifting is actuated via a lever on the front downtube. Mafac brakes are installed front and rear but there is also a rear drum brake. Dual brake cables exit the right front brake lever. Both handlebars are French. The bell is not working!
My colleague, a tandem salesperson and fitter, hand-measured this bike carefully, reporting that driver’s portion of the bike measures 22 1/2″ or 57cm from center of the bottom bracket to top of top tube (where it joins seat tube). The stoker is 22″ or 56cm. Top tube length – the top tube is not exactly level – measured center to center in front is 54.5cm and 59cm in back.
Bicycle N° 25 of 1970, “Cyclotouriste” type (as mentionned in René Herse catalogue of 1970) in size 57cm with special reenforced rear rack for heavy duty bags,
Frame made with Reynolds 531 tubbing & René Herse beautifull luggs and forck crown, nice unusal dark blue color.
This bicycle is fully original and show some sign of use & patina.
The bicycle has been stripped down for full inspection and rebuilt with all original parts.
Description as follow :
Stronglight competition head set and crank axle,
René Herse stem and René Herse crankset, the double crank set will benefit of a new triple crank axle in order to fitt a triple crankplate from Compass Bicycle compatible with the original crank arms.
Lyotard D460 pedals with Christophe toe clip and straps.
Huret derailleurs Allvit type 2 with Cyclo 72 freewheel, the derailleurs could be replaced or upgraded with Huret Luxe Competition or Super Allvit / Allvit 700.
Normandy luxe hub with chrome spokes on Superchampion rims, fitted with 700Cx28 Michelin period tires, (spokes would benefit of replacement, an upgrade could be made with Maxi Car hub).
Brooks professional saddle on René Herse chrome seat tube.
Weinmann 610 Vainqueur 999 brakes set,
Philippe Professionnel handle bar with Velox tape and plugs end’s, new shellac.
Sonne Net bell and AD HOC Ventose pump, TA bottle cage, front and rear René Herse racks, alloy fender with Soubitez catadioptre and René Herse special mounting plate for rear fender.
All bolt are special René Herse chromed except for crank set.
The rear left chain stay show a little sign of use due tire friction because of a broken rear axle (replaced with a new item) .
This has no consequence about safe riding, it could be repair with welding but it will damage the original paint.
57,5 cm c to c seat tube, 700C wheels.
Absolutely exceptional full chrome Herse randonneur bike.
This bike started its life in 1951 as an absolute top line 700C randonneur, with the features of Herses very best models : SKF bottom bracket, oversized down tube, all spécialités Herse parts.
In the late 60s early 70s it went back to the Herse shop to be fully reworked with modern derailleurs, brakes, wheels, and the chrome and lettering were redone.
So the bike has the geometry of a 50s bike, with “modern” derailleurs brakes; as far as riding goes, the best of both worlds. It will surely ride like a dream.
Perfect chrome except for a small area around the bottom bracket that will need to kept oiled.
Some work required : back light, incorrect and not really in adequation with the quality of the bike mudguards and seat post.
Suggested modification : the Campagnolo RD and shifters could be changed for Huret to match the FD, the wheels for Maxi-Car, the bike would then be 100% French. But the bike could also be kept exactly the way it is….
Postscript: the auction closed at $5,950.55. Yowza.
Very nice 1944-45 René Herse racer. Paint with first René Herse letters.
52 cm middle of BB to center of seat tube, 55 cm top tube c to c.
700C wheels, Vitus tubing, Brooks saddle, René Herse stem and Speedy brakes, stainless fenders, Weinmann brakes, Super Champion rims on Normandy hubs with Bell wingnuts and Lyotard Berthet pedal cages.
V.O straddle cable hangers,alloy seatube and handlebars.
Very fine condition except gear braze-on broken, that’s why I used it as a “winter fixed gear bike”.
This is a real quality machine, very hard to find, one of the first René Herse built (number is 27)
Postscript: the bike attracted no buyers at $5,000, so the seller relisted with a low opening bid and no reserve. The relisted auction ended at $2,305.
Albeit one without mudguards or 650B wheels.
We wouldn’t turn it away.
RENE HERSE Randonneuse
The Frame features early style RH lugs.
Early lettering and hand painting scheme
The frame was modified / refurbished by Rene Herse in the 70’s with modern components
It is a Randonneuse frame as it can use fenders, dynamo …
The frame is straight and in good condition with some paint chips.
51cm c/c seat tube
52.5 top tube
Some lucky lady (or man!) will get to become the next caretaker of this bike…
51,5 cm c to top seat tube, 650B wheels.
1982 chrome mixte Herse, beautifully built as were practically all the very expensive chrome RHs.
Very complete and original bike, equipped with the best parts of the time : Huret titanium derailleurs, Campagnolo hubs, Rigida alloy rims, Ideale diagonale saddle, Mafac Competition brakes, Philippe stem and bars. Missing front light, crankset/pedals non-original.
The only negative point on this wonderful bike is the conditon of the chrome, on the top tube in particular, the bike is perfectly rideable but cosmetically imperfect.
Postscript: the auction closed at $3,100.