Malvern Star Path Racer

Malvern Star Path Racer

Remember the exhilaration of that first ride, once your dad removed your training wheels and you careened down the driveway unassisted with the wind in your eyes and, after the initial wobbles, discovered your own center of gravity? For many young Australians, that first bike was undoubtedly a Malvern Star.

Malvern Star can trace it’s origins back to 1902. The 1898 winner of what happens to be the world’s oldest existing track race, the Austral Wheel Race, was a young cyclist named Tom Finnigan. Investing his prize of 240 gold sovereigns, he opened the small shop in 1902 in the Melbourne suburb of Malvern. The shop was renowned for touring and racing bikes, which he named Malvern Stars. The six-pointed star device originated from a tattoo on Finnigan’s forearm. This path racer features three stars on the head tube, denoting a mid-range model, with premium models bearing five stars and one star for ‘entry-level’ frames. The ornate hand-done pinstriping was completed by Ray Geenslade, an artist contracted by Malvern Star and other Australian marques such as Super Elliot, and features his trademark ‘feather’ motif.

Malvern Star recently re-entered the high-end bicycle market with it’s carbon fiber ‘Oppy’ model, which is supplied to the Tasmanian UCI Continental road cycling team, Genesys Wealth Advisers. Perhaps it might consider accessing a lucrative youth market by bringing back lugged steel frames with pinstriping hand-applied by artists and an emphasis on the tattooed origins of their logo?

Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer
Malvern Star Path Racer

  • nice brush work

  • Mail

    Note the fork on this bike. The bend and curve near the wheel. In practice this offset if the axis of rotation makes the bike more inclined to steer straight. As a paperboy in Australia, and a keen road bike tourer later, I greatly appreciated this feature, as it allows you to much more stably ride with no hands, for throwing papers, and for resting nearly blistering ones on tour. The fork also has a built in suspension, as the bend makes it cushion road shocks somewhat.

    The “straight through” forks currently on bikes here in California where I currently live now, miss out on this stuff, and I wondered why they choose to make them that way – is the steel used to weak and or brittle to support this great design?

    • Mail

      Sorry for the typos- iPhone post….but you can get my point I think…,

    • Paul

      I think what is going on nowdays with fork design is more about letting bikes turn better or easier. Differences in rake and trail effect handling in several ways. Currently the straight blade designs are en vogue however there is disagreement on whether curved blades are more comfortable. The steel is not too weak. A bike like the Malvern Star with it’s long wheelbase and decreased trail in the fork probably rides a straight line better than most modern bikes but hammering a sharp turn would not be as fun.

  • Will

    is it just me or is the crown race on the fork installed upside down?

    • Matt D

      Yeah, it does look kinda like that.  Maybe two crown races were installed back to back so that the “integrated” lower headset cup/bottom of the head tube will clear the fork crown?