| I was working at a customer's house and commented on an "old looking" bike he had in his basement. The bike has "Puch" badges all over it and a "100 years" sticker on the downtube near the dt/tt junction. I'm not very familiar with older bikes, so i'm not sure i could put an accurate era on it, but i've a few clues: ten speed bike, suntour components, center-pull brakes and a lugged steel frame...maybe not vintage, but certainly not new. i plan on fixing it up a little (only a little surface rust in a few isolated places, great condition, besides the stickers being predominantly gone or faded) but can't find any resources for puch bikes. any info or advice? thanks in advance, sam|
| 10-speed w/Suntour; must be mid-70s. For Steyr-Daimler-Puch, see below.|
| Austrian bikes are cool. :)|
| Okay, thanks to the help of a lot of informed posts, not to mention a ton of wasted time on "E-Pay", I finally purchased a vintage ride. |
While somewhat of an enigma in terms of identification exactly, it is for sure a late 70's Austra Daimler w/ Nuovo Grand Sport Camp through and through (and, yes, I probably paid too much-350 after shipping). Anyhow, it apparently is a low level racer, while not one of the coveted AD flagship models (forget names) to mine or the sellers knowledge. It has the unique and very beautiful chrome finish though! Unfortunately, there is rust which has infiltrated area's around the BB and in a few other spots. It's pretty much of the surface variety, but damaging to the finish (some low level restoration will be necessary). The frame is Renolds 531 throughout, it has a cinelli stem, and interestingly to me anyhow, is retro fitted w. brake/shifters-a nice post-modern touch for some, while a travesty to most vintage purists out there! The original componentry down to the Itallian frame pump and brass rivetted brooks saddle is included! Now, I do not have it yet (ARGGGHHH), it should arrive tomorrow. The seller has provided me w/ bucket loads of high res pics. in the interim and has been incredibly helpful. I would love to see this post initiate a discussion on the curious, Austra Damler marque. I am also (naturally), hopeful that someone can provide some insight into the significance-if any in particular-of my purchase; It's not really import. to me if it's an investment grade collectable (it's condition is certainly used anyway) , but rather as a bike that can clock some serious touring miles, not to mention provide ne w/ the pleasure of owning something beautiful, old and unique. If anyone may care to, please give me some tips on getting rust the heck off my ride! I don't want a show bike or an intense resoration gig, just an honest touch up so I can get to riding. I'll post pics soon. Again, thanks to all the amazing assistance from many of you in adressing my initial inquiry. My regards----------henry
| Isn't Austro-Daimler yet another brand of the huge Steyr-Daimler-Puch conglomerate? I'm sure there's an interesting story concerning the handmade bike operation, though. I'd guess they probably bought an existing small framebuilder, like Raleigh did with Carlton.|
| I picked up a small (expensive!) bottle of Boeshield for bikes. It works well keeping rust from getting hold of bare steel. I usually use wet 400 grit black sandpaper to scuff off the surface rust. I would avoid silicon coating as it may compromise subsequent painting if you touch up. Check for any stress on the chainstay/BB connection, especially if a kickstand has been used (Argh!). That has been the worst case for bikes I have bought, even after a careful look. Now, that's the first place to check. I can appreciate your excitement. I run a TREK 531 touring bike after months of fiddling to get all the rigging for racks, lights and computer (yes, one of those high tech LCD jobs). It was worth it. Real lightweight for a tourer and it has good range with TA triple crank. Canti-brakes, but downtube shifters which is still my choice for touring. Simple is the best way, IMO. You one good when considering what's available, and remotely comparable, for $350. Get KoolStop salmons on the brakes and hit the road. |
| The bike arrived, and it's a beautiful piece of art as far as I'm concerned. The finish is some kind of a smokey/chrome/Ti sort (if that makes much sense), but is just lovely. The rust is not bad whatsoever, at least not as I anticipated. My seller's pics revealed a more "used" bike than what I have; it's missing decals for the Austra D. name and the model, but otherwise is in very nice shape. from a little web hw, it seems very clear that this is a Vent Noir II model, circa 76. That makes it the touring offering right beneath the racer models. The bike, even with retro fitted STI (I'm not feeling so fond of the match as I did at first...), and with a terrible abundance of excessive cable routing from the brakes and shift's, remarkably weighs in at a darn light 22.8 Ibs. The generic Shim RSX shift/brake, calipers, and deraillers are questionable choices I feel; I understand the previous owner wanted to convert to a 7 speed rear cassette, and modernize a little. Very wisely, he retained every single original part w/ the exception of the front Grand Nuevo Sport derailler (easy to get cheap on e-bay). There's a campy embossed pump, a very nice aerodynamic brooks leather saddle with brass rivets, and that good ol' original campy 5 cog wheel, amongst a medley of camp Nuvo sport to boot. Tough, tough choices await.....I'd have to agree w/ Jonathan about the advantages of downtube shifting, not to mention the authenticity for the ride's sake. Besides, the RSX left shift is not properly alligned mechanically, and I know that fixing STI's are absolute nightmares. ARHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!! |
The original campy brake hoods are too torn to serve, but I'll probably end up heading back to the original camp brake and downtube shift configuration while retaining the luxury of 14 speeds-meaning for now, the RSX brakes and deraillers remain. But first, time for a partial overhaul, some rust cleaning, and who knows what else........... In closing, I'm proud to own such a unique relic, which should serve my riding interests well in the end (the fit seems excellent too. Wow!)
| Austrian bikes are cool. :)|
The black chrome look says "Vent Noir" to me. Nice find!
If you don't like taking your hands off the bars for downtube shifting, consider barcons.
| Only two Austrian bicycle manufacturers did any significant exporting to the US: the large Steyr-Daimler-Puch (Austro-Daimler, Puch, Steyr, some Sears Free Spirits) conglomerate in Graz, and the much smaller Vienna-based Capo Rad & Mode, which is still in the bike business as Capo Computerrad (http://capo.at), specializing in custom-made computer aided design high-end racing frames.|
| Some very interesting info on Austrian manufacturers!... In response to your previous post (by the way), I'd have to agree w/ the barcon route as a nice option. I rode an old Raleigh a while back with a pair for a short time; not a bad feel to them at all (I am a little worried about "crash liability," since I have been known to occasionally ride rather agressively on busy roads (maybe, now that I'm 30, I've wisened up some (haven't ridden for 3 years and am dying to get the Damier set to go!)|
| Some very interesting info on Austrian manufacturers!... In response to your previous post (by the way), I'd have to agree w/ the barcon route as a nice option. I rode an old Raleigh a while back with a pair for a short time; not a bad feel to them at all. I am a little worried about "crash liability" since I have been known to occasionally ride rather agressively on busy roads. Maybe, now that I'm 30, I've wisened up some (haven't ridden for 3 years and am dying to get the Damier set to go!)|
| "Some very interesting info on Austrian manufacturers!"|
I am known as the local Capo fan on this board. (Most Capo owners live in Europe; there are not very many of us in the US.) For a few good Capo photos, see Classic & Vintage under Bikeforums.net.
| thnx John for the help! I'll check out those old photos.|
| I just bought an old bike and the labels say "Executive" Made in Austria. Any idea who made this? Or where can I find more info? It's in great shape, but the chain guard is missing and I'd like to replace it.|
| hi an old guy just gave me 5 old bikes one is a hill special in as new condition any in fo help full . also gave me 2 boxs full of parts|
| Jackpot!Hill Special.H.H.(Harry) Hill of the 36 olympics I think.You might have a check with the brits on this one.Not sure who built the Hill Specials but verry collectable.|
| Thanks, Sam. Nice to see a classic vintage bike restored like that one. Really competes with any from the continent, IMO. More like a work of art. |
| I found a 1951 Raleigh Sport 3 speed womans bicycle in the attact of the home I just bought and was looking to find a value and somewhere I could sell it. Only a little dust but other than that mint condition|
| If it's original and complete you might get around $100 for it on ebay or Craig's list. Work down from there for bad condition, missing parts, etc. If it's amazingly perfect you could get more.|
| I feel bad...I suggested this bike should be worth $300 - $400. After all, we see nice 70's Sports get $300 on occasion. Why wouldn't a mint 51 womens Sports get at least that since it is a superior bike. |
However, that's my pricing...I suspect you are correct David.
| I agree that it COULD fetch a higher price, but it will not be easy finding that buyer. Bicycle hoarders, oops "collectors," are almost all men who prefer men's frames and pay accordingly, despite the fact that women's bikes are almost always in better condition. And adults' sizes (23" rather than 21") do better as well.|
| I have a vintage Raleigh Sports single speed men's bike. I'm not sure what the year is. I think it's around 1951-52. The tire size is 23x1 6/8. It was made in Nottingham, England It is in very good condition. It still has the original Brooks leather seat. The tires are Dunlap White Sprite. I was wondering about how much you think it is worth?|
| I just bought an old looking Raleigh bicycle from a thrift shop today, but due to a lack of knowledge and a young age I can't tell how old it is. I will attatch some pictures. I would like to fix the bike or restore it, but I dont want to ruin the integrity of the bicycle. I am into old cars and Im not sure how closely related the two are. Thank you for any information. |
| You might try posting on the balloon tire and middle weight discussion board - as your bike is more a middle weight bike. I don't know much about these - but unless yours is particularly old, or something - I think they are still plentiful. I had a his and hers pair of these bikes - matching colors.....I sold them for like $35 each. |
If yours has a Sturmey-Archer 3-speed rear - it should have a date stamped on it - that will tell you the age of the bike. They are pretty cool to ride!
| The Raleigh "sports" was anything but...and they are not a lightweight. Made to last a lifetime or three and the y are less massive than a Schwinn "varsity". I keep one in tip-top shape. Aluminum rims make a huge difference, if you can find the 26 x 1 3/8 size. Its rider enjoys the smooth ride and ease of handling around town. They are very stable bikes. I think you are looking at $150 worth of HPV, based on the somewhat scarce appearance in those few bike shops that resell vintage craft. Braking is a problem in the wet, but Al rims will help there. Who rides in the rain anymore, besides me? Just kidding. I'd guess 1967 for date as the adjustable brake levers came out about mid-60's, I believe. Maybe it' s late '60's or early '70's with the "2030" steel. On the rear hub you will see a two digit number stamped next to the Sturmey-Archer logo embossed on the hub. Take a rag and wipe the oil and dirt away to see that. You probably have the "AW" hub (also stamped on the drum). Those were/are exceptionally durable. Just add 30# oil...not a lot! Lube the chain and replace the brake pads with "KoolStop" pads. That will make for a swell commuter. Nice find! I do not see ANY "sports" lying around the thrift stores anymore. Unless the crank is grinding, I would avoid taking it down. The task is not fun to pop those cottered crank arms. However, if it is on the road a lot, it is worth it to regrease. Find replacement cotter pins before taking the BB apart. The old ones will be useless after removal and if you can't find the English pins (good luck), the reassembly will be a lost cause. I run a Raleigh "sports 3", that is basically the same bike only slightly lighter weight. I have 700c alloy wheels on it. It is pretty quick. The 3 speeds are quite enough for commutes that avoid long grades. Change out that seat, too. Those thimble fork crown caps are cool looking. Good luck.|
| Decals definitely look '70s; nice find! |
| Mid-70s. It appears to have a coaster brake. Unless you dislike that, there's no reason to change the rear wheel. Front is 36 spokes so there's no problem getting a Sun aluminum rim for the 26x1-3/8 size. Though if I were building a new front wheel, I would just use a new hub and leave the old wheel alone. From the pics, it doesn't appear that you'll have a problem with snow and ice. I would get a pair of Kool-stop or old Mathauser red rubber pads and see how it does in the wet. I doubt you'll have much problem with braking esp. if you use it more for pleasure than daily transportation.|
| 1973-1976. Hub should have the correct date code.|
Use Meguiars Scratch-X (apply with semi-rough cloth, wipe off with clean cloth) to polish out the paint, then wax it with a quality carnuba wax.
You'll be thrilled at the results.