Beautiful Bicycles: Gazelle Toer Populair and Chamonix Pure

A new Dutch bicycle brand has arrived in Chicago, and you know I was all over them faster than you can say “Dottie is freakishly obsessed with pretty and utilitarian city bikes.”  The Gazelle Toer Popular and Gazelle Chamonix Pure are now at Dutch Bike Chicago. The names are unweildy and hard to pronounce, but everything else about them is lovely.

The Gazelle Toer Popular is a super traditional Dutch bike with gorgeous looks, a sturdy steel frame and all of the expected features.

Gazelle Toer Populair

Gazelle Toer Populair

The stand-out feature that distinguishes this bike from other big English and Dutch models is the rod brakes.  See the curved metal under the handlebars?  That’s the brake lever and one pull on either side engages both front and back brake simultaneously.  This feature is great for one-handed riding.  As Lovely Bicycle notes in the comments below, the rod part is just for looks and the rod simply controls the drum brakes.

Gazelle Toer Populair Front

Gazelle Toer Populair Front

The skirt guard keeps skirts and coats out of the wheel, as well as anything that may dangle off the rear rack.  Fenders and a front mud flap keep the gross road gunk off your cute boots.  The O-lock provides low level security by immobilizing the rear wheel.

Gazelle Toer Populair Skirt Guard and O-Lock

Gazelle Toer Populair Skirt Guard and O-Lock

The chain guard fully covers the chain, protecting it from the weather and your clothes from it.  There is a 3-speed internal Sturmey Archer hub.  Platform pedals accommodate any shoe.  The kickstand provides pretty good balance, although the bike is still susceptible to tipping over and it requires a tiny bit more effort to move the kickstand entirely out of the way.

Gazelle Toer Populair Chain Guard

Gazelle Toer Populair Chain Guard

A bottle generator powers the classy front headlamp, while the back light is battery-powered. A dual internal dynamo hub on both the front and rear would be a better set-up. The big honking bell is my absolute favorite “DING DONG!” bell, very similar to the Pashley’s. The rear rack is heavy duty with strong elastic straps to hold your cargo down. The sprung leather Brooks saddle speaks for itself, and your bottom will say, “Thank you.”

Gazelle Toer Populair Front with Rider

Gazelle Toer Populair Front with Rider

Enough with the bells and whistles, how does she ride?  Very well!  There’s a reason this design has been around since the beginning of the safety bicycle and is still going strong.  This bike sails smoothly and easily.  The three speeds limits the usefulness to cities that are not super hilly, but in most places you won’t have any problems.

Surprisingly, the ride feels quite a bit different from the ride of my Azor Oma.  Although they look similar, there are subtle differences in the geometry – we measured!  On the Gazelle compared to the Azor, the handlebars sweep back two inches less, the seat tube is closer to the stem by one inch, and the stem is one inch shorter.  As a result, I felt perched on top of the bike, rather than enveloped by it as I do with my Azor.  This feeling was more comparable to how I felt riding the Pashley Princess and Sonnett.

For someone trying to decide between a Gazelle and a bike like the Azor, I have two thoughts.  First, which feeling would you prefer: more nimble or more enveloped?  Second, how tall are you?  I think part of the difference in feeling is due to my height, 5’7.  Someone like Trisha riding Gazelle may feel as enveloped as I do on my Azor.  Along that line, someone who wants a Dutch bike but feels that the Batavus Old Dutch or Azor Oma is too overwhelming may feel right at home on the Gazelle Toer Populair.

Interesting conversations about the Gazelle Toer Populair can be found at LA Cycle Chic and Lovely Bicycle.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Gazelle Chamonix Pure is a modern and sporty version of the Toer Populair. The accessories and general design are the same, but the Chamonix Pure has an aluminum frame, making it much lighter. If you want a Dutch bike but need to carry it up stairs and on public transportation or live in a hilly city, this is the type of Dutch bike you need. The bike reminded me a lot of Trisha’s Batavus Entrada Spirit.

Gazelle Chamonix Pure

Gazelle Chamonix Pure

A distinguishing feature compared to the Toer Populair is the handlebars.  While they do not sweep back quite as far, they are fully adjustable back and forth, up and down, round and round with a quick release latch.  This ensures that you’ll find the exact right fit.

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Front

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Front

The gearing here is a 3-speed Shimano internal hub. The brakes are internal roller brakes.  Neither the gears or brakes are affected by weather conditions.

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Chain and Skirt Guards

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Chain and Skirt Guards

Both the rear and front lights are hub generated.  Pedaling powers them, not batteries.

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Front Light

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Front Light

It’s also equipped with a rear rack with straps, O-lock, skirt guard, chain guard and platform pedals.

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Rack and Saddle

Gazelle Chamonix Pure Rack and Saddle

The ride on the Gazelle Chamonix Pure felt very similar to the Toer Populair. The positioning felt almost identical, despite the difference in handlebars. The biggest difference is that the Chamonix Pure is lighter and therefore a bit faster. Also, the ride is not as smooth due to the aluminum frame. Generally, I’m not a fan of aluminum frames because I can feel every little bump but the Gazelle, like Trisha’s Batavus, is incredibly smooth for an aluminum frame. Just not quite as smooth as steel.

If you have any questions, I’ll try to answer them.  Yay beautiful bikes!

You can check out our entire “Beautiful Bicycles” series here.

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74 thoughts on “Beautiful Bicycles: Gazelle Toer Populair and Chamonix Pure

  1. Great test ride review! When I was shopping for a bicycle, it was a “battle of the bikes” between the Gazelle and the Pashley, and I had spent a great deal of time eying the Gazelle Tour and the Classic (a simpler and cheaper model, but equally traditional).

    A few things to add:

    . The rod brakes are not “real”; they are a stylistic feature to make the bicycle look more traditional. This is important to note, because real rod brakes have inferior stopping power, and in the rain practically no stopping power. However, the Toer’s rods are connected via hidden cables to hub brakes. You can kind of see this here.

    . I can confirm that the “enveloped” vs “perched” feeling is subjective and is based on the person’s anatomy. I am the same height as Dottie is, but I think our proportions must be different somehow, because I definitely feel “enveloped” by the Gazelle, but not by the Pashley. The geometries of the two bikes are very different as well. The Gazelle has a completely different style of handlebars and stem set-up, and the Pashley has steeper (sportier) seat and head-tube angles. When I test-rode a Gazelle, I felt as if the bicycle was in control of me more than I was in control of it, but I did not have the same feeling on the Pashley.

    . Finally, if you are buying a new bike, I’d recommend against the external dynamo (the bottle thingie that rubs against the tire), and instead would go with a hub dynamo. The external dynamo is considerably less efficient and the bottle makes an annoying hissing sound when it rubs against the tire. I know that some think it is retro and cool, but I’d give the functionality issues some serious thought.

    • dottie says:

      Good to know! I’ll change the description to “rod actuated drum brake” as the DBC site says. Don’t know why the Gazelle site says only “rod brakes.”

      Interesting to hear about the difference in ride feel. My Azor Oma is so extremely big and enveloping, any comparison will be affected by what I’m used to. Another reason for people to try to test ride as many of these bikes as possible before purchasing, although I know for some people that’s impossible.

      I did not hear any noise from the bottle dynamo, but I’ve heard about that. Not sure why Gazelle did not go with internal dynamo lights for the front and back. The rear battery powered light is a real head-scratcher.

      • The lesser-equipped “Classic” model comes with an internal dynamo, so having the bottle on the Toer seems to be purely for stylistic purposes – especially since the front wheel already has a hub anyway. Interesting that you did not hear any noise. I am beginning to wonder whether it is somehow not entirely “real”, like the rod brakes…

      • Trisha says:

        I think it’s weird that my Bat has a rear battery-powered light, too. There must be some reason two Dutch manufacturers chose to do this? I was intrigued by the Gazelles when shopping but this time last year they were MUCH harder to find than Batavus. It must be a good sign that they’re expanding their sales territory in NA.

        • Jessie says:

          Trisha–is it so the rear light won’t go out when you are stopped? (I have an old granny bike from Japan [I think] that came with a pedal-generated front light and no back light.) I think I remember one of you mentioning a light that can retain a charge so that it stays lit when you are not pedaling (my fear is a car hitting me from behind while I’m stopped), but now I can’t find any evidence of such a thing.

          • dottie says:

            Sorry, not Trisha, but I can tell you that the pedal generated rear light on my Oma remains lit for several minutes after stopping.

          • Trisha says:

            Could be, although Dottie’s rear light on the Oma is generator-powered and doesn’t turn off when you stop. Maybe the dynamo hub(s) used in the Bat/Gazelle are different and can’t store energy?

          • All the dynamo lights are different. Some turn off as soon as you stop rolling, others stay on for a few seconds, and others for minutes. There is really no way to know other than looking at the specs of a specific bicycle.

            • Jeff says:

              Older dynamo lights always went off with the dynamo. Later, some were made with battery back-up to keep them on when you stop. The current ones from B&M have a capacitor that keeps the light on for a couple of minutes, which is long enough for a typical stop at a traffic signal. If you want this, look for a light with the “standlicht” feature.

            • Scott says:

              Yes, riding mit Standlicht is the only way to go. We’re lucky the Europeans like practical bikes so much, if it weren’t for the Euro market I wouldn’t be able to buy half the bike products I like.

        • Sungsu says:

          With LED technology, a battery-operated rear light is not a bad thing, especially if it takes AA batteries. In flash mode, they last a LOOOOONG time before you need to replace your (rechargeable) batteries. For longer trips, I just bring spares (light or batteries).

        • Frits B says:

          LED lights use little power, so it’s feasible to combine them with a capacitor which stores enough energy to keep them on for a few more minutes. It’s essentially the same trick as used on cars nowadays where headlights stay on for a few minutes to illuminate your walk to the front door, the difference being that the car’s headlights draw their power from the battery and the bike’s lights from a capacitor inside the light.

      • Jeff Schneider says:

        There are no cables, hidden or otherwise. The rods are directly linked to the drum brakes.

  2. Cosmo says:

    I cannot stop loving the Toer Populaire no matter how much I try. It is just so beautiful! I am a bit jealous that you got to test the Chamonix and I haven’t yet. I appreciate the comparison to the Azor Oma since I have not yet had a chance to try that one either. I do have to say that I felt enveloped by the Gazelle but I am only 5’4.”

    • dottie says:

      Think you’ll ever buy one :) More on proportion – I have a long torso, so maybe that plays into it? Mostly I think it’s that I’m so used to huge Oma.

      • Maybe it does – I have a short torso.

      • Cosmo says:

        I find it hard to imagine not owning one eventually though I may go with a basic over a Toer Populaire due to the over abundance of leather on that thing. I still dream about it sometimes. I have an average to short torso and I feel like you make the Gazelle look tiny, when I rode it I thought it looked so big. I tested the 57(56?) though. Did you ride a smaller frame?

    • Scott says:

      Do you remember if the headlight on the pure has an on/off switch? I have to walk my bike for a block on Jackson because of the bridge work, and sometimes I can tell pedestrians hate the way the light flashes at low speed so I turn it off.

  3. Trisha says:

    The Chamonix definitely recalls my Entrada Spirit! With fewer gears. My Bat also has the adjustable bars.

  4. Karen says:

    Wonderful reviews! Beautiful bikes.

    The Bike Depot in Louisville, Kentucky also has a great selection of commuter/city bikes. I was very impressed.

  5. Xtra says:

    If I ever start my own line of bicycles my first point of business is to hire Dottie as bike model. She does an amazing job.

  6. Frits B says:

    Remember that the Toer Populair with “rod brakes” is a USA-only version. In Europe it has cables. So much for optical nostalgia.
    I wonder why the modern version isn’t sold in the States. This is called 66 Degrees and looks like this: http://www.gazelle.nl/nl/collectie/fietsen/stadsfietsen-comfort/66-degrees.html. Fat aluminum frame, Chinese made like the steel Toer frames, with extra long rear rack, hub dynamo lights fore and aft, roller brakes (the Toer has drum brakes) and fat tires. 3 Speed Shimano hub. Yet quite a bit cheaper (EUR 600 vs Toer EUR 750).
    As for unwieldy names, Toer = Tour and is pronounced the same, Populair = Dutchified French Populaire so why not simply pronounce it Popular?
    Don’t expect these Gazelles to be as durable as an Azor. Gazelle and Batavus buy their frames in China nowadays and finish them with water-based paint. Good for the environment maybe but not as hardy as powder-coating. Only the top models of Gazelle and Batavus are as well finished as they used to be (not my opinion but LBS’s say so).

    • Jeff says:

      As an owner of the Toer Populair, I can confirm that the version with the rod brakes is NOT for the US only (or at least it was still available in Europe a couple of years ago). I bought mine in Germany, and saw a lot of them on the road there.

      As for the rod brakes not being “real”, I think people are confusing the term “rod” with “stirrup”. The latter is probably the most common type of rod-actuated brake; it just pulls brake pads up against the rim from below, rather than on the sides of the rim like typical caliper brakes do.

      The bottle generator is used, I think, because Sturmey-Archer didn’t have a dynamo hub with drum brake, so in order to have the drum brake, they had to use the bottle generator. It works but is certainly not as nice as a dynohub.

      For Chicago, this is a very practical town bike. The main drawback is that you won’t want to replace a rear tire or tube by the side of the road – getting the rear wheel off is not difficult, but takes some tools and some time, and is best done at home. Kevlar tires are very good idea!

      • dottie says:

        Thanks for weighing in, Jeff! I was hoping you’d stop by and share some first-hand information.

      • Scott says:

        Hey Jeff, I think we discussed the sturmey archer dyno/brake hub last week. They now have one on the market now called the X-FDD with a 70mm drum. Kevin at Boulevard bikes built a wheel with one for me in January to replace the bottle generator setup on my oma. It was a big improvement!

        http://www.sturmey-archer.com/hubs_fh_XFDD.php

      • Frits B says:

        The German catalog still lists the Gestängebremse but only for the 3 speed freewheel version. The other versions all have cables. And interestingly the Toer is also available there with a 7 speed hub and hub dynamo which is not offered in Holland. We’re too flat I suppose. But why not offer this in the US?

    • Fritz – The confusion over this is the reason why I ended up not choosing a Gazelle. Initially, the Toer Populair was available as a rod brake version OR as a coaster brake + front drum version. The latter was available with 3 or 5 speeds. The dynamo lighting was internal, because the hub was SRAM or Shimano and not SA. This was all in their 2009 paper catalogue, which was given to me by the shop where I test rode a Gazelle (the shop no longer sells them now). I was planning to buy a 5-speed coaster+drum brake version, but a week later I was told that this was no longer possible and only the “rod”-brake version was being made available, paper catalogue not withstanding. I am still not certain why Gazelle made this decision.

    • Do you have a source for that part of Gazelle and Batavus buying their frames in China?

  7. Charlotte says:

    I agree with Xtra – Dottie you look great on that bike!

  8. sara says:

    Ohhh– there is so much to like about that Toer Populair.
    I will say I am a huge fan of my Dutch bike’s O-Lock.

  9. I’ll be meeting with the Gazelle rep who’s living in Miami now and test riding a couple models. I know she had both a men’s and step-through Chamonix in the city, but she was going to try to bring in a Toer and a Cabby cargo bike. If/when I do, a review will go up.

  10. Cosmo says:

    [from Dottie: I moved this comment, originally in response to the above convo re Gazelle reps, so it is more than two words per line - sorry for the previous funky formatting, Cosmo!]

    People are very biased about what they like and on the interwebz they are likely to share them with you whether or not you want to hear it. I didn’t think that example was rude or anything he just wanted to know probably to be able to help him sell his bike better to customers like you the next time. People use comments on blogs as social media marketing.

    As far as being made in China goes The Hubby tells me that there are a lot of great bikes made in Taiwan, but there are a lot more really really crappy bikes made there. Also when choosing a “dutch style bike” a lot of people people like to know that a bike was designed for the way dutch people use them and often abuse them. So for them a bike needs to be made in Europe. The thing about bikes (or anything) made in China for me is that there are ethics issues both environmental and humanitarian so I try to avoid them.

    Anyway I am sure that the people are just letting you know that there are other options still available to you since everyone knows you can have more than one bike. You can buy a Batavus next time or Gazelle or Azor or A.N.T. next time you are shopping.

    • I’m perfectly cool with blog comments, Facebook shares/replies, tweets, et al being used for contextual promotion in social media (heck, I do it, see that big [Slow Bike Miami] next to my name above?). And a few times it’s neat; I’m not above a lively chat in cyberspace. I don’t, however, appreciate that I get the shpiel every time I mention my Electra bike. And that’s precisely what was happening with the Gazelle rep (the Batavus dealer in NC just kinda annoyed me a bit because the answers to his questions were right there on my blog post).

      The other thing is that if you a rep from a company (and I could dealers as reps) is going to start lobbing insinuations about another bike brand, the least they can do is get their facts straight. Electras, for example, are made in Taiwan, not China. Far East and cheap, yes, but not under suspect working conditions or a Communist regime.

      Precisely because bikes seems to be like tattoos is why I don’t understand why these folks have not realized that they can be riding the line really close to turning me off their bike brands for the next time.

  11. Tina says:

    I think you look great on the bike, it looks nice and comfy :) I actually prefer Velorbis bikes (http://www.velorbis.com ); it’s just something about the design features and mine rides so smoothly. I think everyone should definitely test ride a few bikes before they buy, as each bike brand will appeal to different people for different reasons. It’s great that there’s such a good choice available and that we have a revival of the classic style Dutch bikes instead of just mountain bikes. I’m a big fan (of your blog too!).

  12. We do not have a *rep* in Miami, but our Sales and Marketing Director is currently living there..(till december).
    She had offered Mr Perez to drop by and ride a Gazelle and has been always very correct and nice to him.
    Our bikes are handmade in the Netherlands.

    Thank you for your attention.

    Gazelle Bicycles US

    • somervillain says:

      “handmade” can mean different things. can you elaborate? does gazelle hand-make every component of new gazelles? the frames? the wheels? does gazelle hand-paint the frames? or do they simply spec pre-welded and pre-painted frames from china and complete the final assembly in the netherlands?

      a factory worker in holland bolting components onto a china-made frame does not constitute “handmade in the netherlands” in my opinion. that would be like claiming that all of the bikes i build up in my basement from japanese and english framesets are “handmade in the US”.

      i have it from a former US dealer for gazelle that their frames are no longer welded or painted in the netherlands.

      • Giffen says:

        (I’m a little late to the conversation here.)

        Consider the counterfactual. *IF* Gazelle still made the frames in the Netherlands, this would be rather remarkable, considering that most bicycle manufactures have already devolved into mere marketing entities, and I am sure that they would emphasize this when promoting their bikes. Thus the vague wording on their webpage and in their comments almost surely implies that the allegations are true.

  13. Brian Allen says:

    Thank you for the beautiful pictures of the Gazelle, it looks a lot like a Raliegh tourist I used to own, a picture of what it looked like is at this link http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gloss_ri-z.html#roadster On a side note Raliegh made everything “in house”, Sturmy Archer was owned by them as was Brooks, except maybe the chains. They even threaded their components with unique thread dimensions which makes working on an older Raliegh a real pain. I believe Schwinn also made everything in house right up to the 70’s.

  14. toer populair is a really fantastic bicycle , Gazelle is the legend for history of bicycle .But You don’t sell the bikes in Indonesia, When do you distribute and open your dealer here ?

  15. Jeff Gray says:

    Hi,
    Just got a Toer P. from NYC and assembled it today. When I look at the picture on this site the light does not have a wire connection between the handlebar stem hole and the lamp.
    The swiggly wire that seems to go from the hole in the stem to the bottom of the big light in the front. See the picture at

    http://www.gazellebicycles.us/bicycles?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=48&category_id=12

    What is the purpose of the connection from the stem to the lamp? Needed? My light does not yet work. Assembled the bike and all is good except the front lamp lighting up.

    Happy Happy to all. Thanks

  16. Brain says:

    Whoa! Dutch bikes in the US? Okay, I found your blog googling “Dutch bikes in the US”, so I’m glad there is evidence that it exists, but the price is crazy expensive ($1000+)! So I live in the Netherlands and a typical Dutch bike can be bought at around 100 EUR (i.e. ~$140). Even a brand new Gazelle brand will be no more than ~$400. With that, I’m not sure if I should fly with my bike when I move to the US in a few months. As you know, these bikes aren’t really meant to be taken apart and put back together like those touring/road bikes. Bike enthusiast shouldn’t be moving towards “fixies” they should be looking at Dutch bikes!!! It is always nice to able to ride a bike in the rain, snow, in any weather in my suit and not worry my pants and back becoming a mess. I guess when I move to the US, I should live like an American, that is get a car(s).

    • Trisha says:

      Depends where you live in the US — there are places you can get by without a car. And places like where I live where you can use both. :) It would probably be worth it for you to bring your bike over from the Netherlands; My parents were able to check my Batavus Entrada Spirit as excess baggage, and it was fully assembled except for the pedals (handlebars were turned 90 degrees to run parallel with the bike).

  17. [...] a more thorough review of the Gazelles, check out Dottie’s write up on Let’s Go Ride a Bike. adjustable [...]

  18. mydutchbike says:

    Its actually spelled Toer Populair and yes its tough to pronounce, my husband doesn’t think so but he’s dutch!. The Toer Populair has just a regular bell chime. The Ding Dong can be a custom add on which i think is a great idea. The main point for us to sell here in San Francisco is the weight. It is a bit lighter than our Azor. it also has a lot more detail which makes it quite appealing to the eye. The 8 speed Toer Populair will be coming in March which is good news for more hilly cities like ours. Thanks for the lovely pictures and information

  19. Kerry says:

    So I am obsessed with this Toer Populair. I would like to find out more about the brakes, not having not ridden one yet. I love the look of the rod brakes. For those of you who have ridden it, how well do they work?

    It seems that some don’t like the rod brakes on this model. I would like to understand the negatives and why people are against them. I don’t know much about bikes or breaking systems.

    Also, I spoke with the CA rep today and she said that in early May the Toer Populair will be available in 8 gears for $40 extra but no rod brakes. I did a search on the internet and found this link: http://www.gazellebicycles.com.au/gazelle-2010-collection/toer-populair-8-speed.html

    Lastly, I am 5’6″ so I am hoping the bike isn’t too big for me. I really like to sit up high on my bike and don’t mind being pretty far off of the ground.

    Thanks!
    Kerry

  20. kenny says:

    I was really split. Almost bought a Gazelle Chamonix Pure. Split between the $850 Breezer Uptown 8 and the $1000 Gazelle.

    Highlights were certainly the handle bars. How trick and sensible is adjustable handle bars? Also liked the internal brakes. I hear they are low maintenance. I imagine once they “need” work… it will add up to as much as the cost of keeping the Breezer brakes up.

    The Breezer felt nippier. The rear rack adapted to panniers easier. My Ortlieb Back Packer Plusses just popped right on. They were a little “tight” on the holes of the strap lined rack on the Gazelle. I also prefer the clamp style for throwing a sweater on the Breezer in a snap, as sexy as the straps are.

    Both have Dynamo hubs… but Breezer is LED and the rear is also stand light connected.

    Both have full chain guards. Both have nice grips. Both have decent cranks…. Breezers might be slightly better being a Nexus design.

    Both have AXA wheel locks.

    then… the price. I saved $200+

    The LBS also puts City Plus tires on Breezer 8’s…something that has been normally downgraded on 2010’s since they lowered the price.

    Breezer is a smaller diameter wheel. Might be stronger, but Gazelle was really a stout wheel. Negligible.

    I dug the internal bell on the Chamonix. Breezer put a cheesy one on this year, but I asked for 09’s. Seems the front and rear Muller lights have been switched to Basta LED’s… probably a slight down grde from last year…. but at least they are LED… Chamonix is not.

    Finally, what made the decision final?… was gearing. Nexus Premium 8 Vs. the 7 speed Nexus on the Chamonix.

    But that handle bar… that bell…. the fact it is made in the Netherlands….the saddle of nominal higher quality… internal brakes….today was a tough day in bike decision world!

    Both are FAB commuter bikes with a wonderful package.

  21. richelieu says:

    Made in china equals rubbish, it’s that simple. The cost of these bikes(AU$1700-2500) makes it seem not worth buying one if the frames are welded in China. Dutch should mean
    Dutch, that’s that.

  22. [...] between a sportier mixte (like Julia’s Peugeot), and beautiful Dutch/English style bike like this or [...]

  23. Delia-mcallister says:

    I have a 1908 gazelle and it is a beautiful bicycle to ride and looks just as beautiful

  24. Delia-mcallister says:

    I have a 1908 gazelle and it is a beautiful bicycle to ride and looks just as beautiful

  25. Purwo_j says:

    I’m from Indonesia. I have two Gazelle Bike (HERN) for man, series number 964475 and 11xxxxx. maybe one of you interest with my bike. plelase sent message or call +6282134991997. thanks..

  26. LGRAB says:

    I think the reason some people are against rod brakes is that they can be compromised by wet weather. I’m not too familiar with them.

  27. Mariusz Wicik says:

    Cześć Jestem z Polski.Posiadam Gazelle Toer Populair T8.Jest nowy i bardzo piękny

  28. Mariusz Wicik says:

    Cześć Jestem z Polski.Posiadam Gazelle Toer Populair T8.Jest nowy i bardzo piękny

  29. [...] out Kerri Russell casually riding a Gazelle in NYC.  I was so excited to see these photos on Pinterest!  I love seeing people in the public [...]

  30. Paul says:

    The rod brake are certainly real. The handlebar brakes are connected with stainless steel rods to the front drum brakes. There are no cables involved.

  31. josh says:

    just to clarify differences in braking systems: There are two ways to connect the brake lever to the braking mechanism: Bowden cables, or solid rods and linkage. Both “Rod” brakes, (or stirrup brakes, or roller brakes) and Cable-actuated Brakes can connect brake levers to either rim brake calipers, or hub brakes.
    Traditional English Roadster bicycles (28″ wheels) had Rod-actuated rim brakes. These use “roller” brake levers and stirrup calipers which double as the main return spring. Before the invention of Bowden cables, all brakes were actuated by rods and linkages, weather hub or rim brakes. Dutch bicycles had the braking systems enclosed in the hubs for all-weather use and low maintenance. These days, with such low friction cable designs, a modern bike equipped with rods and linkage is such, for aesthetic purposes, as was mentioned above. They are “real” however.

    Properly set-up, old English Roadsters have amazing stopping power in dry conditions. The problem is, is that few people have the time or know-how to set them up proper. Removing wheels and adjusting chain tension is also a pain when you are not familiar with these bikes. This, as well as the fact that drum brakes are very effective and of simpler design with less moving parts, is why rods, linkage, and rim brakes on a quality City bikes have all but disappeared.

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