The Best French Component? Sep 16, 2010

Photo by Schwar on Flickr

A recent discussion on the NYC Boards led to this simple question: “Best french component ever? Discuss….” Sasha had the right answer off the bat; well for me anyway. The Berthet Lyotard pedals were the most comfortable pedals I ever owned. Not until I cracked one on the sidewalk was I forced to sell them on eBay a few years back. I didn’t even know what I had either, which is the sad part. Not knowing, I put the drive-side pedal and the slightly damaged non-drive side up on eBay for $15 or something. They were gone in moments and I just sat there, scratching my head.

Maybe you have a similar experience? Or a similar component you loved? Maybe it’s a Mafac Competition brake caliper set or a pair of Stronglight or TA cranks? Share your story with us.

  • usheen

    How much were they worth? And where did you get them?

  • b. taylor

    Cinelli Pepper Bars. LOVE THEM…31.8!

  • Those aren’t French dude!

  • just found these on ebay:

    too bad they’re 1/2″

    and i don’t have much experience with french parts, so i’ll say mavic open pro and ellipse. both solid wheelsets always deliver

  • CL

    CLB Inverse brake Levers.

  • j

    I just sold a pair of these & they fetched a pretty penny. I found them in a yard sale for $5.

  • Worst french component ever: Mavic Ellipse Wheels.

    I just put some Mavic Ellipse Wheels on my new Feather build, and can’t stand em.
    – It took me about 5 hours of scrubbing and a shit ton of glue remover to get the sticker adhesive off.
    – You have to use a spacer behind the cog to have the lockring actually function.
    – They have a 45mm chainline, yet all other track parts seem to have a 42mm chainline.

  • what about time bikes ? or look keo pedals ? or mavic cosmic carbon wheels ? reynolds wheels ain’t bad neither …not to mention hutchinson and michelin tires and tubulars…

  • and of course for the touring heads, la crème de la crème : hammered lefol mudguards !

  • i happen to have the berthets, stronglights, and gitane all going on for a very en francais whip… apologies for the iphone pic

  • I have an early 70’s steel Jeunet frame, anyone else round here own or have owned one?

  • Matthieu

    Kind of fun that these pedals come up on your blog. A year ago I’ve purchased a pair of Berthet for €50 on ebay UK. A month after in Northern France I bumped on a €20 used roadie featuring these very pedals. Agghhh…
    If not too rusty, Atom pedals are strong enough for heavy urban cycling. Not mentioning the anodized red Mavic CXP 33, the hard to find NOS Mavic MA2, the amazing Spécialité TA track rings (coupled with ad hoc crank arms), the Sapim spokes&nipples (Belgian?), the VAR and Facom tools, the Idéales leather saddles. Some bad experience? hell yes with Normandy & Maillard hubs and Rigida rims. I’ve never tried a Look track frame. Should I?.

  • jordan

    i have a jeunet track frame still

  • thayne

    kinda vanilla, maybe not the best…but my favorite: mavic open pro’s