In 1959, when I was a sophomore in high school I got my first "serious" bike, an Elswick "Tour Anglais", with 630 mm (27 inch) wheels, drop handlebars and a 4 speed Sturmey-Archer gear hub-very hot stuff for the place and time!
I almost immediately made it into a 12 speed by adding a derailer and three sprocket cluster to it.
I am tech guru and Webmaster of Harris Cyclery in West Newton, Massachusetts. Currently, this bike is set up as 63 speed, with a Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hub, 7 rear sprockets and 3 chainwheels. It was originally configured as a touring bike, but I later reconfigured it as a mountain bike. I used to cruise the sand trails of the Cape Cod National Seashore on this bike, back in the '70's.
It has 6-speed Dura-Ace levers, which index pretty well with the Sun Tour Cyclone derailers and Regina Oro 12-22 freewheel, Sugino crankset with 28/42/52 Biopace chainrings, Campagnolo Record hubs (high-flange rear, small-flange front), Phil Wood bottom bracket, Brooks Swallow saddle.
When I was a kid, the Marblehead town dump was one of my favorite hang outs, and I eventually noticed that there were lots of bike parts there.
I had long done my own bicycle maintenance, with the help of a friendly bike shop owner, so I knew enough to be able to put bikes together out of parts from the dump.
You can even attach (up to two) children’s car seats onto your bicycle.
When you get to your destination, you just pull the key out, and the lock springs back into place.