Ashby

Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking

Ashby

Postby greasefinger » Tue Sep 08, 2009 4:27 pm

Ashby's

Who here knows much about them?

I've run across a couple over the past two years and over every other bike I've come across found a deep and passionate love for them.

Does anyone here own an Ashby' themselves? Post up some pictures of your own.

I'm looking for a couple at the moment, so if anyone doesn't like Ashby's hit me and we can settle the score, cheers to ya's!

- Thomas
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by BNA » Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:09 pm

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Re: Ashby

Postby scratchman » Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:09 pm

nope, never heard of em, here's a link to a newspaper article
http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/stor ... 00,00.html
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Re: Ashby

Postby Johnj » Tue Sep 08, 2009 10:28 pm

greasefinger wrote:Ashby's

Who here knows much about them?


My first bike was an Ashby, a 1930s 28-inch roadster. It was a hand-me-down from my grandfather who had bought it second hand in Ballina (not too far from Brisbane where it was made). It had definitely seen better days by the time I got it, rusty where it wasn't covered in house paint, and was far too big for me, but I had a lot of fun with it. Your post brought back some happy memories for me.

There's a 1950s Ashby ladies bike on eBay at the moment. Probably going to fetch a bit too much money though.

In the 1930s the Ashby shop ("Ashby's Cyclery" no less) was at 144 Wickham St., Fortitude Valley. Ashbys seem to have specialised in selling bikes on credit. There are some 1930s Ashby advertisements online (just classifieds, no pics) a sample at http://newspapers.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/1187460?searchTerm=%22ashby+cycles%22
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Re: Ashby

Postby greasefinger » Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:55 pm

Ha! I was keen to make a bid on that Ashby, it went for $61 in the end. Got one with all original parts just like it, better condition too. That particular one had zero clearance between the fenders and cranks, from what I could tell. Ahh, wonder where your old Ashby is now? Thanks for the links by the way'.
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Re: Ashby

Postby ValleyForge » Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:19 am

Yes Ashbys were sold predominantly in SE QLD, and were made up until about 1979. I got one of the last ones - a steel 27 incher in Canary Yellow with nice filigree paintwork. I remember my dad wanted one for for my younger brother a few years later and was told they were no longer making them. They could be bought from local shops but the main shop was in the Valley.
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Re: Ashby

Postby silverlight » Sun Sep 13, 2009 10:56 pm

I have some toeclips made by ashby which i believe are from the 30's and i have also come across a luggage rack made by them also, so it seems they also made after sales items.
Not sure if its the same company but could very well be.

cheers
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Re: Ashby

Postby greasefinger » Mon Sep 14, 2009 8:19 pm

silverlight wrote:I have some toeclips made by ashby which i believe are from the 30's and i have also come across a luggage rack made by them also, so it seems they also made after sales items.
Not sure if its the same company but could very well be.

cheers


Out of interest, what is the rack like? I scored a steel one which came off a bent males roadster, I think it was a Hartley.. But aside from that, I've never really seen any other old racks?

The toeclips sound interesting, any reason you think they might be so old?

Cheers on that information'
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Re: Ashby

Postby Johnj » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:20 pm

greasefinger wrote:Ha! I was keen to make a bid on that Ashby, it went for $61 in the end. Got one with all original parts just like it, better condition too. That particular one had zero clearance between the fenders and cranks, from what I could tell. Ahh, wonder where your old Ashby is now? Thanks for the links by the way'.


Was $61 a fair price for the Ashby on eBay? I guess it depends if you think the retro charm outweighed the rust and housepaint. Compared to $600 for a broomstick-handlebarred fixie, it seems like a bargain to me. But then I am contributing to the Retro biking threads, so maybe I'm biased?

My old Ashby has probably gone to the great bike shop in the sky. When I last saw it in the early 1980s it was far worse than the eBay bike. My pleasure in providing the links, I'm just waiting for the National Library to add the Sydney Morning Herald so I can look up some things closer to home.

Interesting to note (thanks ValleyForge) that Ashby was still producing bikes in 1979. I had no idea. Wonder why they didn't start importing and stickering cheap Japanese/Taiwanese bikes like everyone else in the 1980s? Also interesting that they produced (or branded) aftermarket parts. A reminder of the halcyon days of small-scale Australian manufacturing.
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Re: Ashby

Postby greasefinger » Tue Sep 15, 2009 11:05 pm

Johnj wrote: Was $61 a fair price for the Ashby on eBay? I guess it depends if you think the retro charm outweighed the rust and housepaint. Compared to $600 for a broomstick-handlebarred fixie, it seems like a bargain to me. But then I am contributing to the Retro biking threads, so maybe I'm biased?


Well John, to be honest it is kind of cheap, some f****ers around these parts grab anything, say it's something special and sell it off for hundreds more, and some would buy it, doub tthey would value it though? If the Ashby I gave to my girlfriend were lost, I'd buy it back for 20,000. I'm not even joking when I write that. Not because she's my girlfriend, but because it's the best darned bike I've ever ridden, and she loves it just as much as I do. Junkyard job. Trash or treasure!

It is fair, I'm just a cheap arse, and that particular ride had no sentimentality to me........... then. I dug one up from the dirt in better condition, so I'm just being cocky, mind me. I actually wanted to buy it, but I need to stop hording, and I was broke then. You can pick up a deal no matter what ride, believe me. Someone put $61 down, worth it to them.

I found it very unique to the others I've seen though, most I've seen sharing similar design have blue head tubes, this was white, original paint. Some strange decal along the seat post too, it was different. I think it was slightly more modern then most I've seen?
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Re: Ashby

Postby Zynster » Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:22 pm

I've just scored an Ashby off a throw-out pile. It's got a very ornate paint work. It's got no wheels or brakes (I assume it used coaster brake as there's no brake holes). I'll post some photos when I get it cleaned up.
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Re: Ashby

Postby ldrcycles » Sat Mar 05, 2011 7:07 pm

I picked up a 74 Ashby a few weeks ago for $20, mainly got it to keep my 65 Tom Wallace company (and the Jack Pesch and Hoffy i want to get lol), has some nice components (SunTour Honor rear mech, SunTour Spirt reverse action front mech and a very cool triangular Dia-Compe aluminium stem), but the finish on the frame is pretty poor, the tack welds to hold it together prior to brazing weren't ground off and 2 even have sharp edges. Haven't had a chance yet to throw on some wheels with good tires and see how it rides.
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Re: Ashby

Postby ldrcycles » Sat Mar 05, 2011 7:45 pm

Image

Image
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Re: Ashby

Postby Zynster » Sat Mar 12, 2011 6:34 pm

Here are pics of the Ashby I found.

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Re: Ashby

Postby gordy » Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:56 pm

A good friend has a Ashby he has owned since new. Back up what everyone else says about them being a Brisbane bike builder based in the Valley.
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Re: Ashby

Postby Zynster » Sun Mar 13, 2011 10:05 pm

So has anyone got an idea of what era my Ashby is from? I've been able to find little info on them. It looks to be pretty old.
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Re: Ashby

Postby ldrcycles » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:26 am

Going by the bolt on seat stays, oil port on the BB and the shape of the head tube lugs i'd say no later than early 60s. They look like Williams cranks, if you look VEEEERY carefully they have date codes on them which will help. The date code is 2 letters underneath a little shield, the whole lot is no larger than a pinkie fingernail.

I finally got a chance to ride the 74 Ashby i picked up, fairly smooth ride but doesn't have the sort of 'lively' feel i want from my bikes, my 85 Univega runs rings around it.
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Re: Ashby

Postby Zynster » Mon Mar 21, 2011 1:29 pm

The cranks have the brand "PEACOCK" on them with "Made in Japan".
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Re: Ashby

Postby runn31 » Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:11 pm

mmm...I.bought.a..yellow..ashby...27inch..racer...back..in..1974....from..Upper..Toowong....in..Brisbane;...a..mate...from...work...bought..one...too....

after....26...years..it...was....my..pride..and..joy....BUT.alas,.a...few...years...ago,..I..left..it...next.to..the..front..step..at..my..home.overnight...
in..Oceanic..Drive,..Mermaid..Waters..QLD..4218..and.it...was...stolen.
I..had..my..suspicions....and...think..it..either...ended..up..in...some...canal...or....its..in...Townsvile.....

either...way...it...is...sorely..missed....I...still..look..out..for..it
Regards
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Re: Ashby

Postby morini » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:42 am

From the Dutchman ( something like Elloera Cycles) in Woodstock Street. He ended up buying the Uni bike shop and ran it, for a few years.

I bought my first "real bike" there as well. An Ashby "Tour de France". I still had it about 10 years ago but I gave it and two others to a mate of mine. The Ashby was a revelation after my first bike which had a weird rear 2 speed hub which changed by kicking back. The Ashby was a great bike when you were 13.
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Re: Ashby

Postby redrover3 » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:52 am

Old thread I know.
As a school boy at Camp Hill in the mid seventies, I remember a friend of mine receiving a new Ashby "Tour de France" all steel ten speed racer in light blue. It looked similar to the green one above. What really interested me though, was the green Wilkie fixed gear track bike that he also had. I was still on a dragster at the time but that bike got me into proper cycling even though I only rode it round the block. Great fun.
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Re: Ashby

Postby ValleyForge » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:02 pm

morini wrote:From the Dutchman ( something like Elloera Cycles) in Woodstock Street. He ended up buying the Uni bike shop and ran it, for a few years.


Anthony, his son posts here from time to time.

morini wrote:I bought my first "real bike" there as well. An Ashby "Tour de France". I still had it about 10 years ago but I gave it and two others to a mate of mine. The Ashby was a revelation after my first bike which had a weird rear 2 speed hub which changed by kicking back. The Ashby was a great bike when you were 13.


The yellow TdeF model was the one I had too. Needless to say, only the yellow paint was special. I'm sure it was made of very plain steel, just what this 13yr old needed too! The Auchenflower hills and a steel bike made for great thigh development in puberty.
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Re: Ashby

Postby Mustang » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:40 pm

Zynster wrote:Here are pics of the Ashby I found.

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Imagine how this must have looked like when new...with that beautiful pin striping? Are you going to restore it?
Image
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Re: Ashby

Postby Zynster » Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:03 pm

I had planned to restore it with paint job intact. Probably with a clear coat for protection. However now I'm not working, doing up old bikes is an expense I can't afford. So it's sitting in my bedroom.
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Re: Ashby

Postby landcruiser » Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:40 am

Hi I have had in my possession a very old Ashby bicycle and am having a lot of trouble finding out information on this bike.

This bike doesn't have stickers on it for the logos. It has riveted plates on the rims and on the front of the frame. It has a front sprocket with BSA in big letters as part of the structure. It has an olympic leather seat on it. It also has a goose neck design way before my time, which constructs of a square tube set horizontally on it's edge and the handle bars can be adjusted by sliding them forward and back on this bar.

I will post photos in the near future, when I get a better phone or camera.

This bike is rusty but looks to be complete and original, which I think is quite rare. I saved it from a pile of rubbish that was about to go to the dump.
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Re: Ashby

Postby TimboSan » Wed May 29, 2013 12:16 pm

Hi is there anyone here that currently owns an Ashby tour de France bike from the 70's Fortitute Valley shop or knows about parts for one?
Thanks
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