Saturday, July 13, 2013

Gazelle Trimmer Trend and Batavus Champion

Hello and Welcome
On Wed July 10th I drove down to Troy Mi to get a look at two bikes that I was told by the picker were German. I will not give the pickers name as I carefully guard any info about about where I find my bikes. It was about a 45 minute drive, but when I got a look at what my picker had found I was glad I made the trip.

Above: The Gazelle "Trimmer Trend" step through frame commuter bike. The frame size is 54cm (o.c. crank to near top of seat tube clamp) And the frame length (o.c. head tube to o.c. seat tube) is 21 & 1/4 inches or 54 cm. This is my first Dutch bike and is very different from anything I have found before.

Above: Founded in 1892 by Willem Kolling & Rudolf Arentsen, Gazzelle is the biggest and most popular bicycle maker in the Netherlands. When I checked on the Gazelle web site their was no link to any US outlets. That is not to say they are not available here in the USA. I would imagine someone is importing them here for resale.

Above: As you can see the Generator light set and parts of the mounting bracket are badly rusted. I might have a replacement for the generator/light on hand. I have only seen pics of bikes with this type front brake. This one is not hooked up to the cable. I hope I can locate some detail pics of the brake and how it is supposed to be connected to the cable.

Above: I really like the Euro look of the wrap around or full chain guard. Again the rear hub and brake look totally foreign to me. I am glad I have a few other projects to finish before I start this project. I'll definitely need the time to do some research.

Above: A shot of the rear hub and brake hook up. (I think it might be a Sturmey Archer hub) brb..... Ok I just ran out to the shop to make some notes. The Hub markings are as follows "Sturmey Archer - STEELITE - Made in England - 87 or B7" The strap (that one that looks like it is for securing loads) is wrapped around the hub along with some tall grass. But the brake does work when activated by pulling the lever (on the hub) manually. As does the front brake. That's a good start anyway.

Above: I can easily imagine how nice this bike must have looked the day it first rolled out of the shop. The bicycle's rear rack is simple but sturdy with very good quality chrome plating. I have no doubt the rack will clean up beautifully. The bike appears to be a very nice mating of form and function. It is already easy to see why these bikes are held in such high regard here and apparently everywhere else!

Above: The bicycle bell is rusty and sticks a little bit, but I think I can get it working and shining again. The plastic plate has been broken off the Sturmey Archer shifter housing. The shifter itself is completely frozen with rust and will need to be replaced for sure. The brake cables are almost completely frozen and will definitely need to be replaced. I am assuming it is a three speed hub, but I guess it could have more than 3 gear selections. If you know the answers to any of these questions I am asking myself, Please leave a comment.

Above: Sweet head badge! I get the Gazelle part. I am going to see if I can get the other part translated brb.... RiJWIEL FABRIEK (Bicycle Factory) DIEREN (Town in the Netherlands) This was confirmed by a regular reader and long time follower Everett, whom I believe works at the D.I.A. (Detroit Institute of Arts) I have not been to the DIA since I was a kid about 40+ years ago. But I remember it was awesome!

Above: As popular as these bikes are I would think decals should not be too difficult to locate. brb... (again) Ok I have already located two sets. They are not exactly the same, but it is a good sign. I found these in just a few minutes. And I could do a combination of those decals and also have some made up. At any rate, I do not think decals will be a problem. Brakes... Now those might be a problem:)

Above: The Batavus Champion. Same picker, same day same price. (don't ask) The touring handlebars on this bike alone would have been worth the trip. And a skirt guard too. This is one cool little bike.

Above: If I'm lying, I'm dying These handlebars are fantastic! I might have to save these for a future project. I can see these bars on a lugged frame, single speed, vintage style "bare bones" board racer with white tires.

Above: This rack does not appear to be quite as sturdy as the rack on the Gazelle however the rear fender looks a lot straighter. The bicycle taillight and rack mounted reflector look very similar.

Above: The Batavus head badge. I think I will try to clean it up a bit using Mother's Mag and Aluminum Polish. I know nothing about Batavus except what I have learned in the last few minutes. From Batavus: "Batavus is the bike specialist from The Netherlands for all sorts of bikes, including the popular e-bike". From Wikipedia: I have learned in 1904 founder Andries Gaastra sold clocks and small farm machines from his shop. Soon after he began selling bikes built by German manufacturer Presto. Not long after that Andries began building and selling bikes under the BATAVUS brand. It makes sense to me that a man with a background in clocks and farm machinery would be the sort of fellow who could produce technically superior and reliable bikes.

Above: This horseshoe shaped AXA bicycle wheel lock is in the locked position. The lever won't budge, I think I need a key of sorts to unlock it before the lever will move.

Above: I suspect a key or tool of some sort is inserted into this hole (red arrow) to allow the unlocking lever to be pulled. In the mean time I will spray a little WD 40 in there to free things up a bit. I ran across a similar wheel lock before. But the last one was stuck in the open or unlocked position. I think it might have been on the KTM multi speed road bike.

Above: The skirt guard is missing a few of the tabs that hold it in place. I think I can still make it work though. I also spotted a crack in the seal on the left side of the crank. And I noticed like the Gazelle, there is a logo on the kickstand.

Above: I found the AXA site which has a online key service. The following is step one in the key service section: "Firstly you must fill out the key number of your key. You can find this on your spare key, the guarantee card, the steel disc or on your cycle insurance policy. If you no longer have a key number you cannot order a new key and you will have to buy a new lock. The number comprises of at least four characters and at most six. The key number of your key:"
LTMS Are You ####ing Kidding Me? Any chance the numbers engraved on the back of the lock housing might help? So it goes.....

Above: Thursday morning I rode the Diamondback 29'er into town to get a haircut at the world famous Jack's Barber Shop. I have only had two barbers in my entire life. When I first moved out here from the old neighborhood I would drive back to the old neighborhood barber shop on 4th street every couple months for a haircut. Finally I decided to ask around and try something local. And I have been a loyal customer at Jack's ever since. We have one of those discount barbershops now where you can get a haircut for under ten bucks. But your hair will look like you only paid five bucks..ltms. Besides I like to catch up with a the local goings on and talk hockey with Tommy. I don't think you get the small town treatment at the discount place. This past week the humidity came down quite a bit and we've had nice riding weather. But I hear the temp is about to go back up along with the humidity. So tomorrow morning might be my last chance for a comfortable morning ride for a while. I am still riding the 29'er exclusively since we got back from our Island holiday. I just love riding that bike!

Above: Something ran into the front left wheel on the Taurus when it was parked. Besides trashing the hubcap it knocked the front end much farther out of wack. I drove it on the expressway before I noticed the damage and it felt like the whole front end was coming apart at 65 mph. It already needed new tie rod ends and a new power steering pump. And the trans has been shifting really hard into second for about two years now. I had adjusted my driving to avoid the hard shift into second, so that was not really a problem. But I think it might be time to retire the old Taurus. We have decided we are going to donate it to the Purple Heart. Twenty six years old and in the family since it was new, the old Taurus has served this family well since 1987. So we might be purchasing our son's Mazda 3 (He's ready for a change) or we might end up buying new. Totally undecided at this point.

Above: Nothing new to report on the All Pro 3 speed delivery bike project. Or the Zebrakenko project for that matter. But the kitchen remodel is finished! And the front yard is ready for seed (new septic field). Also the new laundry area (stacked) and closet is supposed to go in Tuesday or Wednesday. This summer has mostly been about the house. But soon it will be finished (for a while anyway) and I can once again concentrate on the bikes. At least until the living room project starts. So it goes...

Above: Eddie is doing fine, He's still a pain in the a$$. Until next time Please Ride Safely and Remember to Always....RESCUE, RESTORE & RECYCLE
Cheers, Hugh


  1. Hugh,
    I have a modern Gazelle Oma Tour Populair. I got it last year at JC Lind Bikes in Chicago. They're also sold in New York, Los Angeles, and Seattle. It has a Shimano Nexus 8 rear hub and a Shimano generator front hub. The brakes are Shimano roller brakes and look just like yours. The cafe lock does need a key to open it. That or an angle grinder. The locks hold a key in place and you remove it when you lock the bike.

    The handlebars on the Batavus...those look to be upside down North Roads.

    If you'd like to see mine, I can ride up to Highland some weekend. I live in New Hudson.

    Linda B (linda 58245 at gmail dot com)

    1. Hey Linda,
      I was just looking at the Gazelle Oma Tour Populair at his site
      < > Absolutely beautiful bike! I might take a few "styling cues" from that beautiful Gazelle when I restore the Gazelle trimmer Trend.
      I also thought the bars had been flipped. But I am pretty sure the engraving on the bars is right side up. But I will double check. I haven't been to New Hudson in ages. Is the New Hudson Inn still open for business? I think I read somewhere that it was once a stagecoach stop.
      Cheers, Hugh

  2. Thanks for the shout-out, Hugh. I love those bikes. I have a classic Peugeot UO-18 mixte on long-term loan to my sister that has the same bars as the Batavus: narrow, a little sporty and perfect for a simple city-bike setup. As much as I wanted to keep it, my hands would go numb after a half mile.

    In the Dutch language, the word for a bicycle is fiets (sounds like "feets"), and correspondingly fietsfabriek is bicycle factory. Rijweilfabriek is considered old Dutch, and not really used.

    Both the Gazelle and Batavus are rock solid bikes, and should clean up handily.

  3. Hi Hugh, if those are sturmey archer or some dutch hubs, those are drum brake hubs. You can buy a replacement cable with all the fittings on ebay -

  4. Serious Score with the Batavus and Gazelle look forward to those entering the work stand. The Gazelle almost looks like it has an "Oil bath" chain guard - the messy kind that continually lubes the chain. Have fun with those 2 bikes.


  5. Twenty-nine inch tires are a blast! I miss the old OX29 but I don't regret returning that bike.

    There is definitely a 29er in my future, though. I want one with a road frame geometry, with drop bars. The VA has asked me if I am willing to train for a new career and I'm thinking sure! Send me to a frame building course somewhere! That's if I can't get them to sponsor me for a new gig as a professional blogger, like you.

    Those museum bikes are groovy. I'll bet you will outsmart that lock, with time. You just have to think like a safe cracker, or a brain surgeon. Same thing.


  6. Hi Hugh,

    I am the proud owner of a Gazelle Trimmer Trend for men. It is the same color as yours. Although I do not have the same light mounted I think It has pretty much all original parts on it.
    Let me know if you need more info.

    1. Thanks Stefan,
      Mine has a "non matching" Sturmey Archer chrome front wheel. I suspect it is not correct. Do your front and rear wheels match? I am guessing yours are both alloy.
      Cheers, Hugh


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