Yong Jiu Fixie
contax 645 + portra 400
Vintage Chinese Frame, I got into these wonderful frames last year in a back room of my local bike store in Shanghai. The owner found these in an old warehouse of the Shanghai YongJiu bicycle factory and purchased the entire stock of these old frames at a very high price(According to what they say, I believe they bought these as scrap).
I dug more into these frames later and found only one official document so far about the history of YongJiu racing bike line. The Chinese state government commissioned to build our own racing bicycles for the Olympic Games in the late 50s' and carried out till the 90s’.
This paticular model SC664 is nowhere to be found neither in that document nor on the internet. I believe this could be a proto that never went into prodution or it was built for a special purpose in a small quantity which makes it rare to find, and this particular frame has a very short track end which differs from all the other models made before and after. The record says the previous model SC663 was developed in 1986 and the SC664 was probably around the same period.
In the 1980s', we mostly copied the Colnagos and by comparing the photos of the Colnagos of that period, they seem to have the same geometry and this frame also has an italian standard bottom bracket. I finally met a industrial designer who worked on the fixed gear project with the new branded YongJiu. He told me that at the time as a communist state, we wanted to show the world that we can build anything by ourselves, the same goes with the bicycles and to achieve that in a short time is to copy. The steel tubing was ordered from Italy and assembled on a very small scale in the hands of the best workers at Shanghai YongJiu.
I built this bike myself and I was absolutely astonished by how well and precise it was made. At the moment, I am rebuilding the whole bike again with all italian parts and will update the photos later.
I go on fix gear rides with this bike and people just love it. The frame was kept in its second hand condition( No refurbishment) with all the paint and old Chinese National cycling team stickers intact.
I am so glad that after spending more than 20 years in a dark and damp place, it has risen again to roam the streets of Shanghai................