Caution - Distinctive Style

Pedersen Bicycles

abouthistorygalleryspecificationslinkscontactFAQ

FAQ

SOME ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS....

Sizes?
Saddle?
Adjustability?
Handlebars?
Riding Position?
Gearing?
What sort of components?
Racks?
Color?
Fenders?
Extras?
How long does it take?
What about used Pedersens?
How old is my Pedersen?
Has it been stolen?

 


Sizes?

There are four frame sizes, and there is a bit of overlap between them. I'm 5'11" and my inseam is 34" measured to the floor. I ride a Royal Large frame while the Extra Large frame is a little too big for me. Sharry is 5'7" with a 31" inseam and rides a Large frame. Some riders can choose between two frame sizes, but this isn't the whole story. If you have short legs and a long torso, then the smaller of the two sizes may be more appropriate. Frame size has a direct impact on the saddle, and rider comfort.

Frame size is determined by the fork length, and can be measured from the center of the front axle to the top of the steer tube. The Medium fork pictured below is for a 26 inch wheel and measures approximately 35 inches, 89cm. This length can vary as much as a 1/4 of an inch, 6-10mm, and sometimes more because the steer tube may have been trimmed to accommodate a particular headset stack height. Alternatively, the fork length can be measured to the crown race which in this case is approximately 31.5 inches, 80cm. The next frame size is a Large and the fork typically measures approximately 37.5 inches, 95cm, to the top of the steer tube, or 33.5 inches, 85cm, to the crown race. The Royal Large fork measures 39.5 inches, 100cm, to the top of the steer tube, or 35.5 inches, 90cm, to the crown race. An Extra Large measures 41.5 inches, 105cm, to the top of the steer tube and 37.5 inches, 95cm, to the crown race.

The frame geometry has changed slightly over the years, so if you are measuring an older Copenhagen Pedersen frame to determine the size then these measurements will be more of a guideline than anything else. Also, the fork length of Medium frames can vary significantly because they have been provided in both a 26 inch and a 700C version. And these measurements will definitely not apply to other frames, such as the Kemper Pedersen and the much older Cheltenham Pedersen.

back to the top  

Saddle?

The saddle is a hammock, and when the bike is correctly sized for upright riding, the saddle will usually have a bit more nose up attitude than on a typical road bike. This isn't always the case, but I find this position allows the rider to remain on the saddle, and to move slightly fore and aft to change position while riding. And this is why a long-legged person on a smaller frame is usually not the correct choice for an upright posture. Keep in mind that the front anchor point for the saddle doesn't adjust, and as the saddle height is adjusted, the geometry of the saddle can change, too. Raising the saddle to the upper limit positions the saddle in a more flat orientation, and can make the rider feel like they are slipping forward all the time. This is a much less comfortable position, and the whole idea is for the bike to be comfortable.

back to the top  

Adjustability?

The saddle itself is very adjustable. There is 5" of height adjustment possible in the seatpost. There are more adjustments possible than on a conventional bike, but this can be misleading because the front anchor point for the hammock doesn't change and is not adjustable. While it is very easy to orient the saddle in a more flat attitude when the saddle is at a low height by loosening the webbing, it is impossible to position the saddle in a nose up attitude when the seatpost has been raised to its highest position. A much more thorough description of the saddle hardware, set-up, and adjustment is available as a large pdf file (900K), and it can be downloaded here.

back to the top  

Handlebars?

The Royal handlebars are not required, but they do look exceptionally good on the bike. Available either as a one-piece stem/bar combination or without the attached stem. The one-piece stem/bar combination is typically nickel-plated and provides only a minimal height adjustment, and no method for adjusting the tilt or the reach. The Royal bar without the attached stem is stainless steel, and if the riding position requires a bit more reach than is provided with the one-piece stem/bar combination then a typical quill stem can be used to achieve a comfortable hand position. The bars are sized to handle typical mountain bike components, like brake levers and grip shifters.

back to the top  

Riding Position?

The Pedersen riding position is usually very upright. The rider is positioned a bit further back than on a conventional bike, more on top of the rear wheel. The frame geometry makes it hard to come out of the saddle and pedal for that final sprint across the finish line. The upright riding position also creates a fair amount of wind resistance at speed, although it is very possible to tuck for any high speed descents and the occasional short breakaway. At the other extreme, if the bike is intended to be used for long hill climbs, then lower gears for spinning will be required.

back to the top  

Gearing?

The Pedersen can be set-up as a single speed, but the majority are equipped with either an internal hub gear or a rear derailleur. The design of the frame, and the structure itself, make it very hard to accommodate a front derailleur, so the drive is by way of a single chainring. Various designs for a front derailleur mount have been tried, but each has been a compromise and as yet none have been acceptable.

The 8-speed internal hub, and the 9-speed derailleur both offer a 300% gear range which is adequate for most riding. If additional gearing is required, there are several other options. One option is the SRAM 3x9 Dual Drive. This is a 3-speed internal hub driven by a 9-speed cassette, providing a choice of 27 speeds at the rear hub. This is a nice package that looks good on the bike, and provides a very wide gear range. A second option, and certainly a more expensive one, is the Rohloff 500/14 Speedhub. This is a 14-speed, internally geared hub with a 500% range. The Rohloff hub is a beautiful system and, much like the SRAM Dual Drive, the range is more than adequate for the Pedersen. A third option is the Schlumpf Drive. This is a 2-speed bottom bracket, providing either an overdrive or a gear reduction.

 

What sort of components?

If you plan to assemble your own, there are some decisions to make with respect to your choice of components. The frame can be provided with the braze-ons and cable guides to make it easier for assembly and to provide a more finished look. The frame is otherwise surprisingly conventional, and can accept typical components. There are a few things that don't work very well, and if you plan to assemble your own, I can go into a lot more detail.

Complete bikes are usually assembled with a matching set of Shimano Deore components. These are available in a nice black finish that looks good on the bike. I have a bit of an obsession about having all matching components, but that's just me, and of course there are a large number of other possibilities and options. Complete bikes are really works of art, and most customers have some idea about what they want their bike to look like. The wood fenders are a nice option, especially if they match the saddle, and there are matching leather grips available, too.

A somewhat more detailed desciption of the various possibilities and options can be seen on the sample Design Sheet.

 

Racks?

The frame can accommodate both front and rear racks. A typical front rack is the Tubus Tara, a low-rider style that attaches to the front fork. The best choice for a rear rack is the Tubus Fly, because the tension rods require that the rack have either an open top or a narrow top so that the tension rods can either pass through or clear the outside of the rack. Other racks can be installed, but keep in mind that there are some designs that may not work.

back to the top  

Color?

The frame can be easily powdercoated any RAL color. Powdercoating works best for this frame because of all of the tubes and connections, plus the finish is extremely durable. But there are many more powdercoat possibilities than just the RAL colors, and some will be better choices than others. Typically the most durable coating is the exterior, polyester-based finish. Some of the transparent two-layer powdercoats, like Transparent Copper, are quite stunning but can have a slight non-uniformity and can appear light and dark, with thinner areas and thicker areas. Other colors can be found in an epoxy-based powdercoat, but these finishes don't have a long life when exposed to sunlight and are not recommended, even when covered with a clear coat. Don′t despair, as there are so many choices of acceptable powdercoat colors that a decision can be very hard to make!

 

Fenders?

Wood fenders are a great addition to your Pedersen. I have been installing the Full Wood fenders, made by Chris at River City Bicycles in Portland, for many years now. They are available in a choice of woods which can complement the frame color and component color. Chris also makes a nice matching wood chainguard specifically for the Pedersen. What a great look!

And if the wood fenders are not special enough, I now offer bamboo fenders. These are quite beautiful when done with a herringbone inlay pattern. See some examples at the fender page. There is a matching chainguard, too.

back to the top  

Extras?

There is a unique selection of leather bags available by Kunst und Leder. While their website is in german, there are plenty of pictures! And if you really want a unique way to display your Pedersen, have a look at the Full Wood bike stand. You don't get a choice of woods like you do with the fenders, but the stand is perfect for showing the Pedersen in your living room!

If you are looking for unique artwork, Karl Edwards has produced an original poster celebrating the Pedersen. Done in a whimsical, turn-of-the-last-century style, this fantastic work is available through Karl Edwards Illustration, and will be a beautiful addition to your collection!

back to the top  

How long does it take?

I try to allow 6 to 10 weeks for your frame to be built, painted and shipped. Sometimes it can be a little longer. The shortest transport time from Europe has been 3 weeks, and the longest has been 12 weeks! I suppose it depends on the vagaries of the mail system, customs inspectors, and perhaps even the weather! Complete bicycles can add another week or 2 to the schedule. I try to have all of the components ready when the frame arrives, but there is always something that either doesn't work, isn't available in time, or requires extra attention. And, I probably spend too much time making sure everything is just right! Preparing complete bikes for shipment takes a bit of time also, so it is hard to deliver a Pedersen on a tight schedule. Thanks for being patient!!

back to the top  

What about used Pedersens?

Occasionally, after some serious hand wringing, an owner may decide to sell their Pedersen. Trying to match buyers and sellers for such a unique machine will usually require some patience, but used Pedersens do show up on ebay and craigslist every so often. And I can sometimes put you in touch with owners that are interested in selling, so feel free to contact me if you are interested in a previously owned Pedersen. A used Copenhagen Pedersen is currently looking for a home(Jan, 2017) and can be seen here.

back to the top  

How old is my Pedersen?

Older Copenhagen Pedersen frames can usually be dated by way of the serial number. The number starts with CC, followed by 3 or 4 numbers, then a letter. For example, your frame number may be

CC 765x

Early Copenhagen Pedersens have the serial number on the fork plate, easily visible. Later frames have the serial number under the bottom bracket, which is sometimes hard to see because of the thickness of the paint, and because of the small plastic cable guide usually installed.

The letter code follows this sequence:

X,first used in 1983
Y,not used
Z,used in 1984
A,in 1985
B,in 1986
C,1987
D,1988
E,1989
F,1990
G,1991
H,1992
I,not used
J,1993
K,1994
L,1995
M,1996
N,1997
O,not used
P,1998
Q,not used
R,1999
S,2000
T,2001
U,2002
V,2003
W,not used

A number of Copenhagen Pedersens were delivered to a bike shop in Rotterdam without serial numbers, and the shop owner assigned his own. I was told that these totaled 57 frames, so it may be that if you have a Copenhagen frame with a number that doesn't follow the above format, it could have been originally purchased there. Of course, this scenario could have been played out numerous times in other shops. There were also a number of CoPed branded Pedersens that were imported to the US in the late 1980's. These were also Copenhagen frames.