19 June, 2015

Half Hoods for Mafac Brake Levers, Rustines Caps, and other Cool Stuff

By Chris

I really like Mafac brake levers. They are a little wider than most classic levers and better fit my hands. The hoods are also thicker and more comfortable than the Italian type. Most constructeur bikes used these levers and often had these cool half-hoods. These hoods attach with a metal clip that fits into the little recess on the back of Mafac levers. The originals are very rare and expensive, so these French made Rustines hoods were sorely needed. Used Mafac levers, unlike the hoods, are common and inexpensive, not to mention very cool looking; you shouldn't have any trouble finding a pair.

These hoods are available in gum and black, just like the originals. You may notice that the gum version is darker than the Campy-style hoods. That's because the original French gum rubber was darker than the Italian gum; it's great the Rustines went to the trouble to replicate the original color.

If you prefer full hoods, we have those, too. They are also available in gum and in black. These are even thicker and more comfortable that the half-hoods, though not as stylish.
We have just a few of these Rustines cycling caps in white or blue. I like these because they are a little bigger than most cycling caps and so a better fit on my fat head. The motto under the bill can be translated as "you can flat" (in reference to Rustines patch kits), or as "you can die." This has been a Rustines motto since just after World War One, when dark humor was popular. You can read up on proper cap fitment and etiquette here: http://cyclingtips.com.au/2012/04/how-to-wear-a-cycling-cap/

Also, we now have blue constructeur grips.

The Rustines stuff is selling really quickly and we may have trouble keeping everything in stock for the next couple of months. We're placing bigger orders and should have a steady supply soon. If you own a shop, get some of the patch kits; cyclists love them.

We'll have more of the VO porteur bags later today, another item that's been selling out very quickly.


Kris Hicks-Green said...

I'm so grateful that you're importing these--any chance that you'll have the gum covers for the barrel adjusters that fit on the top of some Mafac levers? These degrade faster than the hoods themselves, and mine are just barely holding on.

Jeremy D said...

The half hoods look great. I wonder if they'd fit on my (probably Dia-Compe?) "Schwinn-Approved" levers.

John said...

Hi. Nice hoods. Any chance of white half hoods as used on Lambert and Viscount bikes in the 1970s? They do not have clips and are held in place by the bar tape.

Jason Cloutier said...


I have some unidentified white half hoods which may be what you need for your Lambert/Viscount project.

Jason Cloutier
Pawtucket, RI, USA

Anonymous said...

Just installed a set of the Rustines gum hoods on my Suntour Superbe levers. They fit great, and look even better. Money well spent, methinks..

James Hickman said...

I to am looking for the half white hoods. You would think someone would be making them since they are so common. Any ideas on where to find them. Already checked Ebay.

Milt said...

I need some half hoods for my Lambert bicycle, which I just discovered has Dia Compe levers rather than original Lambert levers, but was probably still using the Lambert half hoods. Will your Mafac half hoods fit on Dia Compe levers?

THG TCHR said...

I too need a pair of white half hoods for GB/Lambert/Viscount brake levers. They seem to be made of unobtainium.