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1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert  RSS Feed

#1 2014-09-26 8:54am

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3422a.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/image557543021e.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3451a.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3430a.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3404a.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3247a.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3461a.jpg http://bmxmuseum.com//image/img_3426a.jpg

1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Birmingham WHEELS race bike

I have opted to build this Birmingham WHEELS frame up with a nod towards the original WHEELS Team bikes, plus with a few unusual parts of my own liking. This is the bike pretty much as I would have built it BITD, and at the same time I have attempted to restore it using as many of the original period-correct parts it came with; presumed original to the ’83 build (Tioga forks, Shimano seat post, MX clamp, rare Hanabishi cranks). I did quite a bit of research and eventually contacted four of the original Team WHEELS riders who discussed their old WHEELS bikes, the parts they used and how the Team developed and was run. Comments from those riders, and from the period pics they have sent me, have steered me towards retaining the skinny rims that came on the frame when I purchased it; Team WHEELS ran almost exclusively on skinnies BITD. I think they suit the lightweight look of the bike which I have attempted to carry through with the rest of the optional parts. Towards the end of the build I discovered that WHEELS also made their own bars, with both brazed and TIG welding methods being employed (first batch brazed, second batch TIG-welded). I was then fortunate enough to be offered a set of genuine Birmingham WHEELS race bars by a great RAD member in order to finish the bike off perfectly. The full build spec is as follows:-

Frame: 1983 Birmingham WHEELS ‘Expert’ BMX in Butted Reynolds 531 tubing. Frame number 072. Dimensions: 9 inches centre of crank to centre of top tube / seat tube junction (seat tube), 18.5inches centre of seat tube to centre of head tube (top tube). Original factory chrome finish retained. Forks:  1983 Tioga Max Flo Aero (made by Tange) – presumed original to the build. Original finish. Bars: Original and extremely rare pair of Birmingham WHEELS race bars, complete with Reynolds 530 tubing decal (authenticity confirmed by Anthony But – ex-BW Team racer) with a TT Racing Products ‘Jam Buttie’ Double Decka Anti-Tweak in NOS Blackberry. Wheels: NOS Black Ukai ‘skinny’ rims (20 x 1 1/8 stamped) with original decals, as originally came on the bike. Further research and discussions with various ex-WHEELS Team members reveals they mostly raced on skinnies. Hubs: Polished silver Son-lite Turbo with original etched logo, titanium spindles and hardware. Lacing: Radially laced front and half-radially laced and 3x rear (with thanks to Steve69). Tyres: NOS Panaracer ‘skinny’ 1 1/8 gumwalls. Padset: NOS original white set with black lettering (with thanks to Khaled). Decals: Reproduction by Del. Unused original gold set (including Dutch dealer logo) and repro red set also retained. Headset: NOS Tioga MX402 sealed headset with black Tange headset lock nut. Headset: Suntour in black – came with the frame and presumed original to the build. Grips: Black NOS ODI Tec-7 (rare, often used for freestyle mid 80’s onwards but one of my favorites!) Brakes: NOS MX 901. Brakepads: Scott Mathauser finned ‘Superbrake’. Brake Cable: Early 80’s dated black Dia-Compe. Brake Cable Guides:  NOS black Dia-Compe. Lever: Black NOS (still in packet) early 80’s MX-121/Tech 3. Cranks:  Rare early-80’s Hanabishi 3 piece 175mm cranks – retained from original build. These cranks took quite a bit of effort to identify, and I actually removed them from the bike at one point as I did not know what they were. Another RADBMX member eventually posted about his set and my problem was resolved. (Hanabishi was an early Team Kuwahara racer in Japan in the early 80’s who ended up briefly putting his name to various sets of cranks; not many left about today). Crank Dustcaps: Original Hanabishi in black (took 12months of hunting to track these down). Pedals: NOS (and NIB) black Shimano DX including original caps (plus one spare). Chainring: Black Ammaco stamped 44T (130BCD) with NOS Sugino chainring bolts. Chain: Half black Izumi chain with a pair of NOS black ROE Whale Tail chain tensioners. Seat clamp: TT Racing Products ‘Jam Buttie’ Clamp in NOS Blackberry. Seat post: Shimano DX – presumed original to the build; polished, repro black decals. Seat: NOS black Cycle Pro Shot Gun II, date-stamped ’82 on the underside.

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#2 2014-09-26 3:31pm

Riptide
Intermediate
From: Australia
Registered: 2010-10-26
Posts: 252
Bikes: 17

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

very clean looking build. smile

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#3 2014-09-26 3:50pm

82's
Expert
From: Los Angeles, CA
Registered: 2009-05-24
Posts: 719

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

cool ride. Dig it.

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#4 2014-09-26 5:16pm

Daddyoh
Member
From: Downey, CA
Registered: 2013-08-23
Posts: 52
Bikes: 6

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Never heard of this brand before... Beautiful ride and i think ill be looking for this thickness tires. The chain tensioner is something else too... Super cool bike:cool:wink

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#5 2014-09-27 2:17pm

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Thanks for the comments guys. These are pretty rare and sought after in the UK, having mainly been Team bikes. The Whale Tails work well and look fab! My fave build so far I think. Light as a feather too!!

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#6 2014-11-29 3:04am

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Now has a black on white UK-made Mirage race plate... pics to be updated soon. cool

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#7 2014-11-29 3:25am

TaylorRides
Pro MemberThey Call Me T
From: Clearwater, FL.
Registered: 2014-09-18
Posts: 3399
Bikes: 10

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Love the bike!!  Looks like it rides really smooth!


Taylor Allen John Anstrom  .....  Finally found my baby. 1987 Roadmaster Thriller Freestyle!!  Baby blue with white tires and gum sidewalls.  The members of this site made it possible to make my dream come true.

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#8 2014-11-29 4:19pm

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Thanks mate.... my fave build to date. Incredibly light!!!

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#9 2014-12-02 3:40pm

Aulton
Museum Addict
From: Wolverhampton, UK
Registered: 2010-03-15
Posts: 2030

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

OMG that's incredible!!! I remember riding the Birmingham wheels track bitd, killer track n an awesome halfpipe as well! Man that's brought back some memories coolcoolcool


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#10 2014-12-02 4:28pm

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Pleased to hear you like it buddy big_smile Hardly any of these frames around today. I raced at WHEELS also, which is where my passion for these frames comes from. I'm local too, in Lichfield. I see you're from Wolves.... so is my wife! (profile pic)

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#11 2014-12-04 11:43am

sawzall
Museum Newbie
Registered: 2006-09-22
Posts: 16
Bikes: 8

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

you know my thoughts on this build mart,stunning build

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#12 2014-12-04 9:11pm

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Thanks Phil - means a lot coming from another WHEELS fan cool

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#13 2015-06-08 12:27am

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

New picture with a Mirage race plate now added.

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#14 2015-11-30 7:35am

FOSELONE
Pro Member
From: LOS ANGELES CA
Registered: 2012-06-02
Posts: 2932

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Badass

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#15 2015-11-30 10:26am

dinglem
Pro Member
From: UK
Registered: 2009-12-16
Posts: 105
Bikes: 9

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Thanks man.

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#16 2016-03-28 11:11am

skdevore
Pro MemberIt's Not For Sale, Francis!
From: Claremont, CA
Registered: 2010-04-30
Posts: 4079
Bikes: 36

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

Never heard of this brand until seeing yours.  Stunning example of early 80's race technology.  Well done.


There's no help for this Museum Junkie!

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#17 2017-01-05 8:22am

Wilsey72
Museum Newbie
Registered: 2013-06-24
Posts: 11
Bikes: 8

Re: 1983 Birmingham Wheels Expert

mmmmmmm beautiful. I really like the skinnys on this one Mart.

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