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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

AGE / VALUE:    posted by: Michael S on 11/2/2001 at 10:38:15 PM
Hi, i found a nice cond nishiki international lightweight bicycle in nice cond. where these bikes form the 70s or the 80s? & is this bike worth anything. thank you.

   Nishiki International posted by John E on 11/3/2001 at 12:03:53 AM
Introduced at about $140 under the model name, "Kokusai," which I believe is the Japanese equivalent of "International," early-1970s specimens had overweight, spongy/dead-feeling Ishiwata straight-gauge CrMo main triangles and flimsy 3-pin Sugino Maxi aluminum cranksets. By the late 1970s, the frames, the components, and the prices had been upgraded considerably. If you have the original components, you can estimate the age of your machine from the cog count (roughly: 5 speeds = 1970s; 6 speeds = 1980s) and the brakes (again, very roughly, center-pull = 1970s; sidepull = 1980s). A 1980s model is a decent ride, well worth enjoying, but probably not collectible.

   RE:Nishiki International posted by Jonathan on 11/3/2001 at 2:39:36 AM
John, you date the centerpulls older than the sidepulls. I remember that my bikes
had sidepulls, before the centerpulls came on the scene. Then, there was the decisive
change back to sidepulls. Why were the centerpulls so short-lived? The MTB's maintain
centerpull cabling in the rim braking systems. Are the criteria differnet for road bikes and
MTB's? The same principles seem to apply to stopping the bike in either type of bike. ??
I can't wait to hear the answer to that, as I've wondered for sometime about that apparent paradox.

   RE:RE:Nishiki International posted by Oscar on 11/3/2001 at 4:20:06 AM
Center pull brakes allow for long reach forks and seatstay bridges. These advantages allowed for a bike to wear wide tires and fenders. Center pulls were not really short lived. They were around since the 50's, and were common until the 80's. Often, they were used for mid-priced touring-style bikes.

Cantilevers allow for even wider tires and provide for more stopping power. Road bikes for loaded touring use canti's, and so do cyclocross bikes.

   that's the brakes posted by John E on 11/3/2001 at 2:37:36 PM
Oscar is correct. Center-pull brakes became standard on almost all mid-to-high-end road bikes during the 1960s, but gradually lost favor during the 1970s, after Campy introduced racing sidepulls and DiaCompe and Shimano copied them. The dual offset pivots shorten the pivot-to-shoe lever arm to give centerpulls better braking leverage than comparable-reach sidepulls, but the shorter the brake reach, the less significant this advantage becomes. Modern mountain bike cantilevers, V-brakes, etc. offer good leverage with reduced pivot flex/mush.

   RE:that's the brakes posted by Jonathan on 11/3/2001 at 7:01:21 PM
Thanks Oscar and John E.. Competition racing bikes have side-pulls which must mean that they're superior for some reason. I have NEVER had a dia-comp sidepull failure, whereas I've unravelled centerpulls on 3 occasions; all in mountainous roads. This makes me leary of using centerpulls on my touring road bike. Just seems to be too much cable and connecting fixtures for them to be totally reliable. One event involved failure of both front and rear centerpulls on a downgrade near Truckee, Ca. That was inattention to maintenance on my part, but when one travels the maintenance is less likely to be optimal. Plus, at 240 lbs., I was providing a lot of kinetic energy to dissipate. The MTB centerpulls are pretty reliable. There is a lot less flexing around of the hardware. There is a huge multiplier of force working on angles greater than 45 deg. in the yoke (connector cable between arms). It's no wonder a guy could get paranoid about anchor screws. Centerpull caliper brakes are wonders of mechanical engineering complexity. Who first designed such a brake?

   sidepulls for racing posted by John E on 11/4/2001 at 1:29:27 AM
Road racing bikes have sidepulls because they are lightweight and work quite nicely with today's fashionably close reaches. To improve leverage, and therefore braking power, many modern sidepulls are built with dual pivots. I consider the first-generation Campy sidepulls on my Bianchi to be marginally acceptable with KoolStop pads, dangerously unacceptable with Shimanos.

   RE:sidepulls for racing posted by Jonathan on 11/4/2001 at 5:53:30 AM
Riding the brakes like I do, gets my rims too hot to touch for more than a second. Last week, I noticed a considerable fade on the brakes. This occurred about halfway down a 1 mile 10% grade on blacktop. Those Kool-Stops are my next item of purchase! Are there pads that are specifically made for minimal fade, ie., a compound that works well when heated? Tire pressure is another question. If you keep the pressure near the upper limit of the tire, you go faster quicker. As the energy increases as a square of the velocity,,,OK, your brakes have to press harder. If you run near the lower limit of the tire pressure recommendation, then you accelerate slower which means less compression on the rims, BUT the tires heat up due to convection of the air inside the tube! So, is there an optimal pressure for long downhills?
I use alternate braking which controls some of the heat if I stay below 30 MPH.
Mafac had a pad with cording embedded in the rubber, which worked great for me, but I can't buy since they aren't sold in stores here. Those were the best brakes that I ever have had on a roadbike. The brakes are pretty worn out and I'm stuck with DiaComps and weinmann on my road bikes.

   braking posted by John E on 11/4/2001 at 8:51:24 PM
Remember that underinflation tends to overheat tyres, due to sidewall flex. A tyre rated at 100PSI can generally accommodate a significantly higher pressure, limited more often by the rim than the tyre casing. Alternating the brakes on a long descent is not a bad idea; pumping them may be even better. In particular, you want to avoid overheating the front, where either brake fade or a blowout would be disastrous. For most cycling, I use the front brake primarily or exclusively, but I use the rear heavily when checking my speed on a long descent.

By the way, those who ride tubular tyres should take are not to melt the glue with high-temperature braking.

   RE:Nishiki International posted by Gralyn on 11/5/2001 at 12:29:51 AM
I picked up a Nishiki Custom 12 sp. for 13 bucks. I cleaned it up, tuned it up....turned out to be a really nice looking bike - and rides good, too. It has side-pull brakes - it's most likely 80's.

   RE:braking posted by Jonathan on 11/5/2001 at 3:03:09 AM
Thanks, John E., I'll be certain to keep the pressure at the upper limit and with my Parks SA-2 wheel truing stand, the rims will be at their best as well. Gettng back to brakes; the sidepull DiaComp caliper brakes seem to have less elasticity (stretching feeling at the levers) than the Weinmann 999's. Weinmann
720's (sidepulls) work better as well on my Peugeot mixte and UO-8. I'm amazed that caliper brakes even stay attached to the posts after watching the contact on a hard clamp down. With 28 inch 622's on my Bottechia the brake pads are closer to the post, which reduces some of the strain leverage, but there is more torque
working on the brakes. My commute is flat so the braking parameters aren't pushed like on the clubbing treks into the hills. My ride buddy has a Biachi veloce that has the campy's. Suuweeet! He comes down at 180 pounds including the bike, so that has a bearing. I find that I use the rear brake initially; clamp down on the front
until the bike reaches "lock-up" on the rear wheel. The front brake is optimal for normal braking as it is so much more efficient.

   RE:RE:braking posted by Jonathan on 11/5/2001 at 3:10:08 AM
CORRECTION. Not at "lock-up", heaven forbid; rather at the point JUST BEFORE that. I want to live long and prosper. :-)

   brake pads posted by John E on 11/5/2001 at 3:04:07 PM
Jonathan -- If I still had a Peugeot with worn-out Mafac pads and a long brake reach, such as your UO-8, I would keep the Mafac centerpull calipers and install KoolStop pads, instead of replacing the calipers with Weinmann sidepulls.

   RE:brake pads posted by Jonathan on 11/5/2001 at 8:09:53 PM
Thanks, John E. That's advice well heeded (needed?). BOTH!
BTW, now that you are dispensing free expertise, what is the
service-life of caliper hardware, minus the pads? Rather, to account for differences in use, is there a way to tell when the brake hardware is fatigued?
I'm hard on brakes because of my size and I run "heavy" bikes compared to the new ones, anyway. I have yet to have a caliper brake mechanisim itself break up except in a collision event where the brakes smash the deck, usually with 230+ pounds on top of it at the moment of impact.
Whenever I fix a bike for a friend or just for getting another good "old" bike on the road, one arae that concerns me the most is the braking system, which includes the rims. I throw out rims that I would have run myself a few years back. The pads are summarily replaced with new and cables are changed out.
The actual caliper brakes themselves; well I just see what they got or reach into my cardboard filebox and pull out a brake that will fit the bike. Outside of cleaning them up and staring at the parts looking for cracks or bent
parts, I do very little else to determine their soundness. The concept of "fault-tolerant" testing is NOT a good idea, either!!
You mention the UO-8. That's my "night-runner" with special lighting for the bike path return runs with darkness moving in fast. I guess it's my winter workout-bike for before dinner runs. The mafacs with KoopStops will be awesome...it stops real good now, but even better will be outstanding. Last winter, a tree branch was caved across half the trail on a curve. The fact that I had just sanded the rims with 400wet/dry emory, too, to avoid that annoying squeaking. I have no regrets.

   brake caliper life posted by John E on 11/6/2001 at 2:41:48 PM
We think alike, Jonathan. On steep descents, I have sometimes worried about what would happen if my front brake assembly, either the calipers or their mounting/pivot bracket, were to snap. I suppose the situation is not unlike tyres or rims -- wherever possible, put the older, more heavily used parts on the rear, and the newer, presumably more reliable ones, on the more safety-critical front.

   RE:brake caliper life posted by Jonathan on 11/6/2001 at 5:29:35 PM
It all adds up to minimizing what is understandably an inevitable event probability. 10 years back, seems that garage sales were sources for the heavy steel
calipers, as the alloy upgrades came on the wider market some years before. They are rather crude looking assemblies that weigh almost as much as alloy wheels.
They seem to be drop-forged pieces as well. I've put them on 3-speed Raleigh sports and other tanks where a few extra pounds is academic; they don't work as well as the
alloy generation, but it may not be due to the material so much as to the craftmanship and design features. They work fine. Heck, if a guy polishes them up, he could park right in front of the coffee house.
Are those old steelies (brakes) worth keeping around?

   RE:that's the brakes posted by Bill Putnam on 11/9/2001 at 8:59:08 PM
For a discussion of the various styles of caliper
brakes see:


I have found my early style Campy Record
side pull, weinmann centerpull, and even
Mafac Racerbrakes adequate for my needs
which has including loaded touring in
mountainous terrain.

Sheldon Brown has some pointers on proper
set up of brakes-modern cables and salmon
colored cool stop pads being very helpful
in getting the best out of any brake set up.


(scroll down for a discussion)

Bill Putnam

   RE:RE:that's the brakes posted by Jonathan on 11/11/2001 at 5:35:01 AM
Thanks for that website on different caliper brakes, Bill.
I have found that those makes are adequate for my needs as well, although whereas the frames of good bikes have no problem with a little extra mass pushing down on them, the componentry is another story. Campagnola components are designed and crafted for strength. It is interesting that they look elegant, when functionality is the main concern.
Truing my wheels precisely has made the brakes work a whole lot better. The Parks sa-2 truing stand is great.

AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by: dave on 11/2/2001 at 4:11:17 PM
I picked up another Raleigh Super Course yesterday (I think this makes 4 now) and was wondering about my options if I want to replace the bottom bracket with a cartridge style and use non cottered cranks. I know the treading is different -- what possibilities are there?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by Keith on 11/2/2001 at 5:50:37 PM
I'm not 100% certain, but I think that unlike the Raleigh 3-speeds, which used Raleigh-made bb cups with special thread size (24tpi?, I believe), the lightweights like the Super Course had standard English threads. My hunch is based on the fact that the lightweights were built mostly with other manufacturer's components, and the early Super Courses had Stronglight cottered cranks. In contrast, the 3-speeds had Raleigh-made cranks. Any good bike shop will have thread gauges -- so pull the bb and have the cup checked. If it's English, then you've got lots and losts of options, including Phil Wood. Even if it's not, Raleigh-made bb cups will accept the kind of cotterless bb spindles that have bolts at the end (as opposed to the kind tapped to accept bolts, which tend to be marginally larger where it counts). Good luck!

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by Keith on 11/2/2001 at 6:10:25 PM
Correction: Raleigh made bbs used 26 tpi; 24 tpi is standard English.

   Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by John E on 11/2/2001 at 6:42:58 PM
All (British, American, or Asian) Raleigh lightweight road frames, including the Super Course, have modern world-standard (ISO) 24TPI x 35mm=1.375" BB threading with 68mm BB shell width (probably 73mm on oversize aluminum frames), which means you can choose among MANY BB/crankset combinations. Do not invest alot of money in the project, but if I can justify converting a Peugeot UO-8 to cotterless, you can definitely justify converting a Super Course.

As you probably know, the fixed cup unscrews clockwise.

   RE:Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by dave on 11/2/2001 at 9:26:39 PM
John, thanks for clearing this up. Obviously my assumption was that the threading on their road bikes was the same as the 3 speeds.
I'm thinking one of these will be my first fixed gear. 531 main tubes, nice long dropouts, cool GB stem

   fixed-gear posted by John E on 11/3/2001 at 12:08:56 AM
I think it's an ideal candidate -- ISO standard threads and diameters, no derailleur tab, reasonably lightweight frame, horizontal dropouts, etc. Read Sheldon's articles on fixed-gear conversion, use 165mm cranks to avoid bottoming out on curves, and post again to let us know how it all turns out.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by John on 11/3/2001 at 12:32:43 AM
I recently converted a SuperCourse to a single speed, it was pretty easy.

Used the steel-cottered Stronglight cranks, took off the big ring and mounted the small ring in the inside of the spider (tricky to bet bolts tight), re-dished the rear wheel, removed all shifting impliments, shortened the chain, installed a BMX freewheel and voila! It was sweet riding - sold it to a Motorcycle messinger in San Francisco who wanted to convert it to a Fixie. Biggest challenge is if you want to get away from 27" wheels, brake reach can be a challenge.

   RE:RE:Raleigh Super Course BB options posted by Jonathan on 11/3/2001 at 2:56:05 AM
The 165mm cranks that John E. recommends were on a lady's
Centurian that I am using for a Le Tour II convert to fixed.
Keep looking for that garage sale Centurian for those 165's.
Possibly other Japanese makes have the 165mm cranks, I have
only that one (lucky) find to report. I went through my
whole box of cranks without finding one 165. Then, I remembered the
yellow tomato trellis Cent. hanging on the back fence. That
is a major safety concern for cornering. I have selected a
stubby set of Atom (60ish) pedals that increases that critical "drag angle"
a bit more. Good luck. Check the clearance of the BB from the road; that measurement
has a name, but I can't recall it. Some frames have a slightly raised BB.

AGE / VALUE:   HF and LF hubs posted by: Mike Slater on 11/2/2001 at 1:50:03 PM
Does anyone know if manfufactures mix HF and LF hubs on lightweights in the 60's and 70's ? Today even?

I have a couple of bikes that have the same hubs, the rear is a high flange, the front low flange. Who knows if these are original, but they are the same brand and type. Also, I have noticed this same setup (HF rear, LF front) with a wider rim in the rear and a narrower rim in front.

Anybody else seen this?

   HF and LF hubs posted by John E on 11/2/2001 at 3:08:01 PM
I freely mix and match HF and LF front and rear hubs when shuffling older wheelsets among my road touring bikes, but I have never seen a factory-original production machine, except a 3-speed or other hub-geared bike, with a mixed set. [Campy did make a mixed rear hub for a few years, with HF on the drive side and LF on the left, presumably to make the drive side torque spokes as tangential as possible. This appears to have been an evolutionary dead end, however.]

Using a wider rear rim and/or tyre in back makes sense on a firm surface, because the rear wheel bears about twice as much load as the front. However, on a soft surface, I want a wide tyre in front. Again, however, most manufacturers go for front-rear symmetry in specifying factory-original equipment, perhaps to simplify parts inventory control, and perhaps because the public expects this. [For example, the British had the right idea, with 32 spokes front and 40 rear, but the world adopted continental Europe's de facto standard of 36 spokes on all wheels.]

Personally, I think the whole "factory original" equipment fettish is overblown by the collectors, because owners who really ride their bikes have traditionally swapped and upgraded equipment -- everything from saddles, to gear ratios, to shifters, to pedals, etc. One can make a much more convincing argument for period-correct, and perhaps nationality-correct, equipment. Alot of Peugeot PX-10s left the dealerships with 14-26 freewheels, softer saddles, clincher tyres/rims, and even barcons.

   RE:HF and LF hubs posted by Oscar on 11/3/2001 at 4:24:56 AM
I've seen lots of lower-end bikes with HF fronts and LF rears. I guess with the freewheel, you could only tell it was LF from the nondrive side.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fontan Bicycle posted by: Lane on 11/2/2001 at 1:56:31 AM
I was offered a Fontan ? French ten speed It had an Ideale Leather seat but i could not get clos enough to see any other details (buried in the mess). Anyone know anything about these.

   Ideale saddle posted by John E on 11/2/2001 at 2:44:59 AM
If it is in good condition, the Ideale saddle is worth more than the bike. I have never heard of the frame brand-name.

AGE / VALUE:   Mint Original Schwinn Superior posted by: desmo on 10/31/2001 at 11:34:58 PM
These seem rarer than Paramounts, I am pretty uninformed on Schwinns, but this looks nice. (Nuovo) Gran Sport gruppo, semi-ornate lugs. Japanese frame?


   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Mint Original Schwinn Superior posted by Eric Amlie on 11/1/2001 at 1:32:48 PM
From what I understand, this '81/'82 model actually sports a Paramount frame with Campy Gran Sport components. Apparently Schwinn was trying to use up some leftover Pmount frames. The bike sold for $850 in 1981 and $881 in 1982.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Mint Original Schwinn Superior posted by DBean on 11/11/2001 at 11:50:02 PM
Someone got a really nice bike for $305. All Campy, 531 frame with Nervex lugs, outrageous color...

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Lower-level Atalas posted by: smg on 10/31/2001 at 6:46:32 PM
I scrounged an Atala "Grand Prix II" frame out of a bike shop's back room. It's a lower-level frame with plain rear dropouts, but "feels" a little better than a comparable Peugeot. Only other surviving marking is a Campy decal. I would guess it to date from the early '70s. Does anyone know anything about it? I'm using it to build a replica of a 1950-style English "club" bike, using a Sturmey S-5 hub for lack of anything more exotic.

   Lower-level Atalas posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 10:04:24 PM
Sheldon mentions Atala, a third-tier Italian maker below Bianchi and well below Cinelli or de Rosa, on his website. Although it and the Peugeot UO-8 are both plain carbon steel, I am not surprised that the Atala rides better -- I have liked most of the Italian frames I have encountered. I suspect you will find that the Atala uses 73-degree angles instead of 72, and has a shorter fork rake (and therefore longer fork trail) than the Peugeot.

If I recall correctly, basic Atalas (and Peugeot UO-8s) retailed for about $125 during the early 1970s. Enjoy the project!

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Lower-level Atalas posted by sam on 11/2/2001 at 4:16:13 AM
www.cyclesdeoro.com has some on Atalas

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS: Lower-level Atalas posted by dave on 11/2/2001 at 2:56:39 PM
I have an Atala which is a step down from the top of the line ... Columbus DB tubing, Campy high flange hubs, Campy Gran Turismo DRs, Stronglight cranks.

Is there a serial number at the top of the seat tube?

AGE / VALUE:   CANDIAN PEUGEOT posted by: DON on 10/31/2001 at 3:54:28 PM

   CANDIAN PEUGEOT posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 10:23:57 PM
Helicomatic is the evolutionary missing (weakest?) link between freewheel and cassette/freehub. They were made for only a few years, and replacement parts are unavailable. See Sheldon's glossary.

Oscar has called Swiss Weinmann Vainqueres "everyman's brakeset," because they were used on everything from the Raleigh SuperCourse and Schwinn Continental to the Raleigh Professional and Schwinn Paramount, until Campy launched (and DiaCompe and Shimano copied) the modern sidepull fad. 610, 750, etc. refer to the reach of the caliper. The model designation is usually 999. The factory-original Weinmann 999 centerpulls on my 1960 Capo still work beautifully, and I have no desire to "upgrade" to sidepulls. I also really like the way Weinmann (or DiaCompe) levers fit my hands -- I cannot grab long-reach Mafacs, Modolos, and Campys as quickly and securely. (That's why my otherwise all-Italian Bianchi has Shimano brake handles with Campy calipers.)

As far as I know, Carbolite is ordinary carbon steel, with a nonstandard seat post diameter and other irritations. I bought a rusty French Carbolite Peugeot at a yard sale for $3, salvaged the parts I wanted (particularly those Swiss-threaded BB cups!), and scrapped the frame.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   CANDIAN PEUGEOT posted by Keith on 11/2/2001 at 6:14:00 PM
If you want to see currently available Peugeot and Motobecane models, go to bikesdirect.com No Carbolite.

AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn 3 speed posted by: Jonathan on 10/31/2001 at 3:15:30 AM
Horsed this bike out of my "turkey barn" collection for the purpose of admiring the incrediblly beefed frame. The STurmey/Archer AW hub is 1966, but I just have a feeling that the bike is older than '66. The forks are one solid forged unit with unusual rounded shoulders (crown). The frame joinery has beefed fillets on the toptube/seattube as well as the toptube/headtube.
The tankish BB has some overflow welding material bathing the seattube/downtube junction. The rear triangle is like a motorcycle's. This was not a bikeboomer. Color is blue. The chainwheel has 4 circles inside the chainring. THe chainguard has lost it's decal, if there was one. I've gotten "Speedster", "Breeze" and "Racer" (hard to fathom that) as candidates for identity.
It is a truck, I can't believe they made bikes like this one. Any thoughts about
age/model would be appreciated.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn 3 speed posted by Oscar on 10/31/2001 at 3:51:36 AM
It probably is a Racer or Speedster. You can rule out Breeze unless it's a girl bike.

Believe it or not, it's considered a lightweight. Dating the bike by the hub is reasonably accurate if you think the wheel is original. The serial number on the left dropout can be checked against the Schwinn serial number found on this site.

Take the bike out for a spin. You'll appreciate it's smooth ride. I've gotten my Speedster up to 28 mph, but it took some doing.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Whats this Motobecane? posted by: Warren on 10/31/2001 at 2:42:45 AM
I don't have pics and I didn't get a great detailed look at it because it was hanging from a ceiling but I'd like any opinions anyway. It's a Motobecane, spelled in big block letters on the seat tube...no chrome, and has a Simplex groupo and a Sugino crank. No wheels or brakes. At first glance it looked like a Jubilee but this one had very nice brazed seatstays that seemed to merge into the seatube as opposed to attaching to the outside. The rear brake bridge was high end...a "vee" shape and nice finish. It was hard to see the tubing sticker...it may have said Motobecane Tubing in french.

I think it's time to sell the Cannondale frame I haven't ridden in a year and build a nice french bike...if you guys think it's any good of course. More info needed?

   Motobecane posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 3:04:41 PM
Warren -- Before taking the plunge, make sure the bottom bracket cups, which are probably Swiss-threaded and therefore increasingly rare, are in good shape. (In desperation, I successfully forced a British-threaded Sugino fixed cup into my Peugeot six years ago, but many people may be justifiably uncomfortable with this solution.) Motobecanes are generally better-made and much better-finished than their Peugeot equivalents. Sheldon (a hardcore Francophile) and classicrendezvous.com may have more useful data for you.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Whats this Motobecane? posted by Steven on 10/31/2001 at 11:29:05 PM
This could be a Motobécane Mirage. From memory, they were sold in the first half of the 80's. They had the seatstays that you describe. High Tensile steel frames and very narrow and light rims for the time (Rigida) The were sold mostly in Orange.

MISC:   Dumb Questions posted by: Stacey on 10/30/2001 at 9:24:20 PM
Dumb Questions: Part Un

I've seen mention here with reference to frame geometries; "Road" & "Touring". What is the difference? I have a Raleigh Capri, labeling states something to the effect "Sport Touring Geometry", how does that fit in?

Dumb Questions: Part Deux

When changing over from a side-pull caliper to a center-pull unit is it necessary to change levers too? Also, in the same vein, on the Weinneman/Dia-Compe lever assemblys I've noticed there are different colored "buttons" on the side... Red, Gold, and Plain (silver), is this indicative of anything? The reason I ask is that I'm upgrading the brakes to Dia-Compe center-pulls on said Raleigh and want to make sure I get it all.

Dumb Question: Part Tres

What sound does purple make?

In the wind and over the top,

   RE:MISC: My dumb answer posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 10/30/2001 at 11:32:58 PM
When changing over to center pull you don't need to change levers not usually. It's whatever will go together and within that, what do you want to do, or what makes you happy? I 'm not sure about the different buttons myself. That a good question! Perhaps to signify a diffrent model brake or for different type bikes or wheels or something or perhaps they just did it to be plain annoying.

   another dumb answer posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 1:32:55 AM
I have owned Weinmann and Diacompe brake handles with red, gold, and silver-colored pivot/mounting inserts, and have never detected any difference other than the color.

   RE:MISC:   I'll try #3 posted by Walter on 10/31/2001 at 2:18:00 AM
As a combination of red and a deep dark blue you have a sound eerily reminiscent of the noise of a passing comet when heard in the vastness of interstellar space.

If you've never been there you wouldn't know and probably can't imagine. but if you've ever had the pleasure you will never forget.

   RE:MISC:   Dumb Questions posted by Walter on 10/31/2001 at 2:19:29 AM
Trust me.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Dumb Questions posted by Oscar on 10/31/2001 at 3:42:30 AM
Implicitly, Walter.

Center pulls usually have a longer reach than most sidepulls. Try them on before disassembling the cable from your sidepulls. If your sidepulls are that long, what brand are they.

I was always interested in those Campy long reach Gran-something sidepulls from the early 60's.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Dumb Questions posted by Oscar on 10/31/2001 at 3:44:54 AM
No one answered Part Un (le premier?) I'm not worthy.

   road racing vs. road touring geometry posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 3:12:24 PM
The terms are subjective, somewhat arbitrary, and subject to change over time, but today's road racing (and racing wanna-be) frames tend to have wheelbases below 100cm, clearances for 700Cx25mm and narrower tyres, and '74-degree frame angles. Today's road touring frames have more relaxed geometries, with more generous tyre (and mudguard!) clearances, slacker frame angles, longer wheelbases, and sometimes cantilever brake bosses. The geometries of many pre-1970 road racing frames resemble those of today's touring frames.

FOR SALE:   1946 Gillot Taper Tube posted by: DBean on 10/30/2001 at 9:34:30 PM
Here's a very cool bike for sale on ebay. Item # 1025355896

   RE:FOR SALE:   1946 Gillot Taper Tube posted by Walter on 10/31/2001 at 2:29:37 AM
You're right it is a cool bike.

I'll watch the auction with interest. To me it's a more desirable bike (by far) than the recent $7100 Peugeot but I don't expect it to draw anywhere near that kind of action.

   RE:FOR SALE:   1946 Gillot Taper Tube posted by desmo on 10/31/2001 at 8:10:24 PM

   1946 Gillot Taper Tube posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 10:29:45 PM
Over the past few months on eBay, Hilary has certainly come up with some high-quality, rare merchandise.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   M/F Schwinn Le Tour II posted by: David on 10/30/2001 at 5:39:22 PM
As mentioned by Eric in your forum, my wife and I purchased a matching set of pearlescent orange 1977 Schwinns' ridden only once and garaged. Originally bought at a bike store on Robertson in Beverly Hills, they are amazing....original tires, tool set, paperwork, everything. There are pictures posted on the Schwinn Heritage site and if you want more, we would be happy to e-mail pictures to you. We are not really collectors and don't know whether to ride them or sell them.
Thanks- David & Emily

    Schwinn Le Tour II posted by John E on 10/30/2001 at 8:30:26 PM
If both of you are happy with the fit and the ride, by all means enjoy the bikes. If they are not your size or style, then sell them.

By the way, through 1977-79, I lived two blocks east of Robertson Bl., and I have probably been in the bike shop which sold them originally.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   M/F Schwinn Le Tour II posted by Jonathan on 10/31/2001 at 3:05:09 AM
I have a '77 Le Tour II that is the same color as yours. Panasonic made mine as it says "made in Japan" on a sticker. I'd use it
for level 2 touring. The frame is stiff enough for panniers, yet it handles OK on free runs on the BP.
Mine will make a good fixed gear commuter with changed-out cranks fr. a Centurian (165mm, hard to find). My Le Tour II was
one of a pair at Thrift store. It is 25" frame. The "double" was a 23" which was hardly used, but too small for me. The 25" bike had some wear, but mostly due to weather. Probably the
guy rode his more. $25 seems like a rediculous price for a bike that good. The steel handlebar struck me as a bit out of character for the overall quality of the rest of the components.
One note: watch out if you try to remove the fixed bearing cup on the BB, it's easy to cross-thread and it is RH thread, I think. Check it out.

   bb threading posted by John E on 10/31/2001 at 3:16:59 PM
All American and Japanese bikes, with a few exceptions such as Mario Confente's California Masis, have British/ISO BBs, i.e., LH threading on the fixed cup; therefore, it unscrews CLOCKWISE.

   RE:bb threading posted by Jonathan on 11/1/2001 at 6:50:24 AM
Now I have to go look! I hope I did it right. All I remember was getting real ticked trying to get that "fixed" cup put back into the pipe. Thanks for clearing that up.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by: Bill on 10/30/2001 at 4:34:49 PM
I have one 2 inch diameter roll of Hunt Wilde plastic handlebar tape. Is this enough to do both sides of the drop bars of an early Schwinn lightweight or does it take one roll per side. Thanks, Bill

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by Eric Amlie on 10/30/2001 at 6:35:21 PM
I'm pretty sure that I have successfully wrapped a set of bars with one roll like you describe (I have seen at least two different size rolls) but you have to be careful to keep the overlap to a minimum. If you can get your hands on a second matching roll it's better to be safe than sorry.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by Gralyn on 10/30/2001 at 6:40:20 PM
My experience is that it takes one roll per side.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by Larry Stone on 10/30/2001 at 7:32:10 PM
I have to agree w/ Eric! I also wrap both sides of my handlebars with only 1 roll unless I'm useing (Cloth) tape on early 60s bikes, Then you need two rolls & alot of patience.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 10/31/2001 at 1:09:45 AM
I heard somewhere that having a bar end plug is a safety thing and you want to have one in place always.

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by JimW. on 10/31/2001 at 8:04:04 PM
You can do a set of Schwinn bars with one roll of tape. The
important thing to do first is cut the tape exactly in half before you start wrapping. I learned this lesson the hard way. Fortunately, the guy I got the first roll of NOS tape from had another one.

The bar-end plugs make the difference between a nasty bruise
and a really interesting puncture wound.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Handlebar Tape Question posted by Oscar on 11/1/2001 at 1:53:55 AM
One man's interesting puncture wound is another man's core sample.

AGE / VALUE:   Peugeot posted by: Don Gladden on 10/30/2001 at 4:27:24 PM
Picked up a Peugeot uo9 "Super Sport" at a Toronto garage sale. I'm puzzled though as the frame decal says "Made in Canada", but componentry is all European: Maillard hubs, Simplex ders, Weinmann alloy centre-pulls. Bike looks brand new. Only date I can find says Procycle 1982(just above bottom bracket). Any way this could be year of manufacture??

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Peugeot posted by ken on 10/30/2001 at 6:22:49 PM
82 is probably your date. All manufacturers use components from hither and yon, and commonly list the frame manufacture location as the point of origin. I was just cleaning up a '74 Schwinn Suburban (! pardon my mentioning it in a lightweight forum:)) with the famous Chicago emblem... the derailleurs and hubs were made in France, and the brakes and freewheel in Japan. All of them are "Schwinn Approved"...

   Canadian Peugeot posted by John E on 10/30/2001 at 8:22:19 PM
Don, I think your Peugeot frame was probably made in the mid-to-late 1980s. Check the Peugeot PX-10 website (via either sheldonbrown.com or classicrendezvous.com) to be sure, but the Peugeot bicycle brand name was bought by CCM of Canada, and by 1990 all new Peugeot bicycles sold in the U.S. were Canadian. The good news is that you have ISO-standard British bottom bracket threading.

AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by: Tim Herring on 10/30/2001 at 12:59:27 AM
Hello Folks, Can someone please help me? There is a 1970 schwinn suburban on ebay right now, the item number is 1025575926. this bike looks like it was made yesterday? i would like to bid on it , i had a 1974 black one just like it, But mine was not near as nice as this one. I bought mine used in 1976. please tell me how these people find these beautiful new looking bikes over 30 years old & I look everyday & find only junk, rusty bikes. I dont get it. also, was 1970 the first year that the suburban was made? like that seller claims? please post you reply. thank you, Tim.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Larry Stone on 10/30/2001 at 5:13:38 PM
Flee markets, garage sales, thrift stores & don't forget the daily newspapers! Finding that "perfect" Vintage bicycle also has a lot to do with where you live! I'm in Florida, Down here, there are mostly older folks & when they move to Fl to retire, They bring there bikes with them only to find that its MUCH to hot out to ride. They end up selling them. Keep looking & have fun.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Fred on 10/30/2001 at 6:24:06 PM
Tim: Some of us are just lucky to live in bike-rich areas. Here in upstate NY there were a lot of Schwinns and Raleigh bikes sold. Perhaps due to the short summer, bikes didn't get ridden as much as they would in warmer climes. I have found a number of near new-like bikes right here at home. I spend half of each year in the Tampa Bay area of Florida. This is also an area rich in old bicycles but as Larry and Walter have said, the climate is very hard on bikes if not taken care of. I am lucky to have found 6 very nice Schwinns. I bought my Suburban and a World Tourist from my favorite dealer 4 years ago in NY. Last spring I bought a matched pair of very nice World Tourists from a neighbor and a mint Premis from a shop, both in FL . 5 years ago I found a near mint World Sport in FL. 3 years ago I found a nice Centurion Iron Man in Fl. I have had equally good luck in finding Raleigh bikes. Good bikes are out there and the more and the harder you look, the more of them will turn up. I would advise you to go for the Suburban on E-bay if that is your dream. You might find another one tomorrow or look in vain for years. I wish I had the bikes I have passed up, usually because at the time, the price was too high. Good luck.

Fred H.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Mike on 10/30/2001 at 6:43:56 PM
While on the Subjct of Suburbans, How many of them were producd compared to models like Continentals, Varsity's, ect., and what years did they use the unique Front freewhel system with indexed shifting. These are great bikes, I just rode mine from Boston to New York city (230 miles in 5 days)

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 10/31/2001 at 12:49:38 AM
If it is in really great shape it was likey stored indoors, barely ridden for any number of reasons. Perhaps they didn't like the bike,something came up and they never got to ride it, they took steps to protect it. Many bikes have sat in shops and wharehouses never having been sold. Go for it.

   70 Suburban on ebay posted by John E on 10/30/2001 at 3:40:43 AM
In the U.S., most bicycles are purchased with good intentions or given as gifts, ridden a bit, then stored away, or perhaps brought out periodically. I have not found anything near-NOS at a yard sale, but I see them all the time on eBay, paricularly in colder climates.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Andrew on 10/30/2001 at 12:35:11 PM
Keep looking, one will land in your lap when you least expect it. Two years ago I set up at the local flee market and the person set up next to me had a '78 Suburban, in frosty blue...near mint condition or $25.00...got my money out right away! These bikes are among the classiest American bikes ever made. Keep looking.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Eric Amlie on 10/30/2001 at 1:46:38 PM
Just lucky I think. Just yesterday I was corresponding with a guy who bought a matching men's/women's set of '77 LeTour II bikes. They were bought originally by a now elderly couple who rode them once then put them away in the garage never to ride them again. Needless to say the bikes are in mint condition. The thread with a photo of the bikes is on the Schwinn forums.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Kevin K on 10/30/2001 at 2:59:51 PM
Hi. I'm one of those lucky guys that finds these mint older Schwinns. How? Lots and lots of time, ask,ask and ask everyone you know if they know where there might be a nice Schwinn bike for sale.To date, I've located only six bikes that would qualify as mint/NOS condition. Of those, I've kept only 2.( I collect 1972-1974 Schwinns in Sunset Orange and Opaque Blue to limit the size of my collection ) A friend of mine has a nice black Surburban. I'll see him on Thursday. I can find out more if you like.Hit Goodwill Stores on a regular basis. It is a very time consuming hobby but when you find the ones you are looking for you tend to forget about all the deadend leads. Enjoy. If you would like to talk more, email me direct at kbcurvin@aol.com Thanks, Kevin

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Walter on 10/30/2001 at 3:57:24 PM
That bike must have been kept in a climate controlled area. Florida does not treat Schwinn chrome that well for 30 years unless it's under AC. Not even a garage would keep the chrome from pitting and the decals from fading. Coming from the sunshine state and having been around lots of Schwinns I can speak with some authority. I doubt it's a restoration as there's no mention and probably no profit incentive.

Perhaps it sat in a shop for most of this time? Not impossible, there are lots of small Schwinn shops throughout the state that went under and unsold inventory could have wound up in storage somewhere. Suburbans didn't sell like Varsinentals.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Fred on 10/31/2001 at 4:50:40 PM
Tim: I no sooner shut my PC down after sending my comments on you posting than my favorite bike shop owner called and invited me over to look at a bike he had just taken in. I rushed right over and looked at a truly fine Ladies Sports with coaster brake. I told him that I was not desperate to buy it since I already have two of that model. We finally made a deal whereby I would take the bike in addition to a very nice red Sports that I had previously made an offer on. Now, how do I slip them into the garage unseen by, you know who.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Kevin K on 10/31/2001 at 8:06:33 PM
Hi Fred and others. I spotted 3 bikes out the other night when I was with my wife and son in HER car. I turned back to look them over and she said sternly" You ARE NOT putting those in my car " ( We bought a new Saab a couple years ago, I see the newness hasn't warn off.) I sometimes think I could get in a lot less trouble looking at another female than a bike! UUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM. All this is meant in jest, but we sure do catch the devil for bringing them home. On the other hand, THEY sure smile whem we sell them and show them an evening out on the profits !!!!! Enjoy. Kevin

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Kevin K on 10/31/2001 at 8:11:00 PM
Hi. I do mean bringing home BIKES, and I mean warn, not worn. Kevin

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   70 Suburban on ebay WOW & HOW??? posted by Oscar on 11/1/2001 at 1:57:24 AM
It may be easier looking at a gal in front of the missus instead of an old bike, but you'll never get the gal in your Saab either.

Consider collecting Hummels or something the little lady will like.