Saturday, July 4, 2020

Lincoln Imp makeover

As per previous posts lockdown was a good opportunity to get on with a few easy win bicycle projects, the bonus being that there was also lots of opportunity to get out and enjoy the finished article.

The first time I built up this Elswick Hopper Lincoln Imp it was what would be called in the motorcycle world a restomod. Modern aero rims mated to Sturmey Archer Steelite hub brakes and three speed along with a modern retro saddle and bars. Here it is below

For a while I had been in the mood to make it a bit more period correct and a moment of enlightenment came tidying up the workshop when I realised that I had all the parts needed just lying around. Overall the results are quite pleasing. I wanted to keep it single speed but only had a five speed wheel so ran it on the centre cog. I think I might add a derailleur soon to make it slightly more authentic. Results are as follows...

Brake levers are Universal. They are a great shape of levers, very under-rated but this gives the bonus of keeping them nice and cheap.

The Lincoln Imp is an off the peg cycle but it's all 531 and a good ride. Plus it's got the best logo.

The calipers are GB sprite.

Both rims and hubs are Milremo. Can't say they have had the best of storage as the spokes have some corosion but the rims look like they are new or at least barely used.

And the GB Sprite rear. I like GB brakes but quite honestly the Sprite is a fairly average product.

And finally cork end plugs just the way they should be.


  1. Clarification please: are you saying the cork end plugs are "just the way they should be" because that is the way the bars came? I assumed these would be wine corks inserted by clever owners replacing lost or misplaced metal plugs. Just curious. Either way, I think it is neat.

    1. Hi David, just a turn of phrase really. Not standard - original plugs would have been plastic in the fifties - but it is something that clubmen racers would have done in the forties and fifties. The practice was a lot more widespread in France (surprise surprise!) and I believe many of the small volume 'constructeurs' would have fitted corks as standard.