Stallard, P T
Posted: Wednesday 03rd June 2020
The first frames to bear the legendary P.T.Stallard name were built, to Percy’s design, in 1938/39 by Mount Cycles of Wolverhampton. These frames featured fork blades and stays of French origin folded from flat strips and soldered along the join. They were to typically Continental design with 73/73 angles.
During 1945 frame production began at Percy’s Wolverhampton shop when he employed frame builder Joe Oliver. Initially one model was available, known colloquially as the “Stallard Continental” or retrospectively, the “ModelA”.
By the late 1940’s other models were being introduced, all heavily French influenced in design. Firstly the Montlhery model built from Kromo SAQ tubing with 73/71 angles. Later, touring, club and fillet brazed models including the Berwyn, Clent, Malvern and Cotswold were produced. A Mixte framed model, the Universal, introduced in 1948 was probably the first frame of this type produced in the UK. Copied from a French design, it was later taken up by other makers and the type is still available today.
Top of the range was the Zacopane road race model (image above-1952) introduced in late 1949 and named after Geoff Clarke’s Katowice – Zacopane stage win in the 1949 Tour of Poland on a Stallard machine. This bicycle featured 72/71.5 frame angles and 10 speed Simplex gearing, probably the first catalogued British machine to do so. Available direct from Percy Stallard, to special order and from limited stock, or through a network of approved dealers as a frameset or complete cycle, some were exported with Australia a favoured market where Percy’s brother Denis was the distributor.
Stallard cycles were well designed, well made, functional machines that lacked the fancy lugwork so cherished today. However they were in great demand by shrewd clubmen who appreciated sound design and good quality with top equipment at a competitive price. Production continued until the late 1960’s when frame building ceased. Fortunately, all Percy’s production records from 1945 onwards survive and are held in the Archives department of Wolverhampton Library. These are available for public viewing. Staff will supply photocopies of original build sheets and other documents for a small fee upon receipt of the frame number. This is always located on the left hand rear dropout and steerer tube.
Montlhery equipped with Osgear 5-speed gear, South of France Bars, CLB brakes, etc.
Built as a BLRC racing machine in tribute to Percy Stallard who was the founder of the League.
Full details in ‘Reader’s Bikes’
Early frames feature a 3 digit number without a letter prefix. Later models are identified by a one or two letter prefix followed by a 4 or 5 figure number. The numbering system changed several times (usually at the turn of a decade) and are somewhat complex.
Letter Prefixes to aid model identification
These drawings for Stallard rear dropouts as fitted to the Monlhery above are Percy’s originals from the Stallard Archives held at Wolverhampton Library (see above).
The gear ends, lower left were designed for the Osgear. When setting up this gaer one needs to get the striker forks as close to the large sprocket as possible. With normal rear ends this creates a problem when removing the wheel as the sprockets jam up against the striker fork. With the Stallard rear end there is no forward travel of the wheel when secured in the forward position of the two.
The alternative opening is for use with fixed wheel – probably in the winter. It is very difficult, if not impossible to use the Osgear rear ends for a Simplex gear.
The tang also stops the wheel from jumping forward when being replaced say after a puncture.