Bikes, Videos and Books

My two great obsessions in life are bicycles and making videos. And books. Okay, my three great obsessions in life are bicycles, making videos and books. So when I got the opportunity to combine all of them on one project I thought my ship had come in.

We at Video Production London recently received a request to produce a short film for an independent bookstore in central London. They wanted a simple piece that captured their passion precisely. So we had the idea of books featuring in all aspects of their lives – from Maupassant in bed, to Steinbeck in the shower and Hemingway over breakfast. We even wanted to share their love of books somehow while the owner, Pete, cycled in to work.

Obviously it was a bit dangerous to have him on his commute racing through the prose as he raced through London traffic. So we put our heads together and came up with Gatsby…

As I said, I’m a cycling obsessive and take great pleasure in building bikes up from scratch and trawling boxes of parts looking for exactly the right components.

A friend of mine was selling his old Fuji Track Pro that he’d had resprayed in orange and off-white (a 2010 model – from before they changed the range’s name to Track Comp). This seemed like fate – so I duly snapped it up.

I got in contact with a chap I’d heard about called Sam Fish who lives just around the corner from me in Homerton but has a workshop out in Essex. I told him what I had in mind and he was happy to help. He arranged for some vinyl designs to be prepared and collected the frame from me the next week...

In the meantime, I cobbled together a chain set consisting of a pair of Dura Ace 7710 track cranks and a 50t Sugino ring along with another bit of Dura Ace clobber – the 7700 Octalink BB. All in top condition.

Then I stumbled across a pair of wheels being sold by a designer friend of mine. Built on Mavic CXP12 rims with absolutely astonishingly smooth 32h Goldtec track hubs and an 18T ring at the back.

Then I paid a quick visit to the ever-helpful London Fields Cycles where I bought a new Brookes Swift (the narrow version, in ‘Honey’), a fabulously strong KMC track chain and a Shimano 105 front brake with a Cane Creek lever and some Shimano Deore XT pedals.

I had a call from Sam to say that he was driving over with my newly refinished frame that afternoon so I rushed home to settle in for an evening spent putting it all together.

I stripped and cleaned all the moving parts right down to the last ball bearing before packing everything with grease and painstakingly assembling it – making sure that there wasn’t even a speck of dust inside.

A few hours later and it was ready…

We’re keeping the whole bike under-wraps until the video is finished, but in the meantime, here are three teaser photographs:

And of course you can expect to see the final cut of the video here once we’re done. Be excited… we are!

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Video Production London Blog

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  • My two great obsessions in life are bicycles and making videos. And books. Okay, my three great obsessions in life are bicycles, making videos and books. So when I got the opportunity to...

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