Aluminium Bicycles have been constructed with questionable success since the late 19th century.
The major issue was, that Aluminium while being very workable was also incredibly soft. It was not until a German engineer from Düren came up with an aluminium alloy that included Copper, Manganese, Magnesium and sometimes Silicon, that characteristics were achived which opened the door to new fields of metal-construction. The new wonder material named Duralmin had to be used in thicker gauges than steel but effectively made for stronger structures at a lower overall weight.
This made Duralmin a favourite in all kinds of high-end industries, from airplane building to ships, and, of course. cycling.
Duralmin became particularly popular in France and with its culture of pushing extremely expensive top tier bikes it was only a question of time until an Aluminium bicycle would manifest here.
Consequently French engineers from Meral and other brands tried to make this product happen. One successful attempt was made by Pierre Caminade. His bike, the Caminargent, was introduced in 1936 and united technical finesse with avant-guard machining and elaborate Art-Deco-aesthetics.
Octogonal Duralmin tubes were fastened in ornate cutaway Duralmin lugs by the use of bolts. Seat stays and chain stays made use of a resilient alloy called Almasilium. The finish was simply polished.
An extensive number of parts was also made by Caminargent, and ensured that the weight of this bike was impressively low, in juxtaposition to its price tag.
Our Caminargent comes with some of the most expensive top notch parts of its time, including the lightest shifting Simplex offered at that time. Completely built, it weighs in at exactly 9.0kg and that could easily be pushed even lower if that was important.
This is probably the most complete Caminargent we have seen on sale within the last decade.
A beautiful, rare bicycle from the 1930s.
|Simplex Champion du Monde Extra Leger
|Simplex Champion du Monde
|LAM Super Dural
|Stronglight 49D; 170mm; 46t
|Stronglight square taper
|Caminargent Type Course
|Scheeren, wooden core Aluminium; 700c tubular
|Tufo Elite; 25x700c
|Philippe Professionel; 38cm