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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Not so vintage Team Raleigh Record Bicycle posted by: Lane on 11/6/2001 at 9:25:08 PM
Just curious when a Raleigh Record bike was made with Team Raleigh on upper tube (Red and Yellow Paint sceme)and decal: 1970-71 World Champ Professional Spint on lower tube. I bought it incase I needed a derailler for my Sprite 27 but everything works andI fixed the Sprite without needing parts. Thanks.

AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by: Gralyn on 11/6/2001 at 9:18:12 PM
I picked up a Ross...25" frame. I was choosing between a Schwinn Varsity and the Ross. I picked up the Varsity (weighed it by feel) - it was about a 19" frame. Then picked up the Ross. The Ross was lighter....so I got it. I have no idea ....I have never heard of Ross. It looks like a pretty good bike, though. I would say it's from the 80's...early to mid 80's. Does anyone know anything at all about these bikes?

   Ross 10-speed posted by John E on 11/6/2001 at 11:13:11 PM
Historically, New York-based Ross has been a poor-to-mediocre Huffy- or Murray-class marque, well below Schwinn in quality. However, "for one brief shining moment," during the 1980s, they did make a limited run of lightweight racing bikes, of which yours apparently is a specimen. Although I have never ridden one of these, my overall impression is fairly positive.

I do have one of their aluminum-framed Rock Machine 1600 mountain bikes from the late 1980s, and the frame seems far better than the original components, most of which I have scrapped and replaced. I am saving this one for son #2, since I consider it about on par with his brother's CrMo Specialized HardRock.

   RE:Ross 10-speed posted by ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 11/7/2001 at 12:15:47 AM
Not yrying to start anything but wasn't Ross made in Pensylvania? Perhaps they had offices in New York. What is the story with Ross?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Walter on 11/7/2001 at 12:19:15 AM
I too remember the decent to good Ross roadies. With all due respect to Schwinnophiles I think you picked the better rider.

I seem to remember Ross being a US company but I'm pretty sure the bikes we're talking about are Asian.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Gralyn on 11/7/2001 at 1:44:28 AM
The Ross was made in Penn.
I had a Schwinn Continental with a 25" frame....it weighed a ton compared with this one. It felt lighter than the 19" Varsity. Overall...the bike seems pretty good quality - and good quality components. From the styling, etc. I think it's early to mid 80's. I haven't tried it out yet - have to tune it up, etc. first.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Lane on 11/7/2001 at 2:04:50 AM
I too just bought one of these at the local thrift. It is labelled Ross International Gran Touring II. Seams to be decent bike. I was going to leave it at work for a runner. Funny thing is it's replacing a Schwinn.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Gralyn on 11/7/2001 at 2:35:01 AM
I believe that's what mine is - ...or is it a Gran Prix II....it's cold out....don't want to go out and look.

   Ross 10-speed posted by John E on 11/7/2001 at 3:15:05 PM
You guys are right about the Pennsylvania, rather than New York, origin. Most Ross frames, including my Rock Machine, were made in U.S.A. Please post again with your impressions on handling, climbing response, etc. I vaguely recall that Ross sponsored a road racing team in the early 1980s, which would be the obvious way to market high-end racing frames. (It's a bit like Yugo building a Porsche-class car and then facing the even bigger challenge of convincing the world that they actually succeeded in doing so.)

      Ross 10-speed posted by Debby on 11/7/2001 at 8:38:19 PM
I saw two Ross tenspeeds at a local thrift shop last week.
One was a "Professional". Both had headbadges stating made in
"Allentown, PA". They looked to be of better quality than
Huffy. I didn't really take that good of a look as I wasn't
interested, but the frame was some kind of high tensile steel;
both had cotterless cranksets.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Walter on 11/7/2001 at 8:48:25 PM
I was playing around with a search engine and found a couple of outlets that still sell the "Gran Touring" model. Advertised with SIS 12 speed and a picture that shows non-aero brakes. Price was +/- 250$. Was surprised as I didn't expect to see any of these mid-quality and very retro (even w/SIS) selling new anymore. Certainly preferable to any "mountain bike" in that price range.

   Ross signature series posted by John E on 11/8/2001 at 1:16:52 AM
Check out this little bit of Ross history:

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Gralyn on 11/11/2001 at 3:37:16 AM
My Ross is a Gran Tour II. I cleaned it up today. It looks pretty good now. It's a dark brown, though....not really the prettiest of colors.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by desmo on 11/11/2001 at 3:36:40 PM

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross 10-speed posted by Stacey on 11/12/2001 at 11:36:44 AM
Interesting! I'd just discovered a bicycle badged "American Bicycle Company, Allentown, Pa". Curious... any connection to this Ross saga?

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   5 speed tp 6 speed posted by: Harris on 11/6/2001 at 7:54:52 PM
T o show how little I know about 10 speeds. I have another French bike......a Le Jeune 1972......full Campy NR. Can I use a rear wheel with a shimano 105 6 speed cluster? The wheel fits and seems to work on the bikes stand.......but it is a little noisey. Did the chain width decrease for the 6 speed ro am I good to go? What is it with me a French bikes.............all I ever wanted since I was 15 is a cinelli!

   5 speed to 6 speed posted by John E on 11/6/2001 at 11:27:58 PM
During the early 1970s, we sold a few LeJeunes at Supergo. The frames are at least as good as the equivalent Peugeots, but Peugeot never offered Campy NR components!

Remove the rear wheel and measure the inside spacing between the dropouts. Traditionally, bikes set up for 5-speed freewheels had 120mm spacing, but "ultra" 6-speed freewheels, with their narrower cog spacers, can generally be swapped in very easily. During the late 1970s, 126mm spacing and standard-width 6-speeds became popular. These can generally be replaced with 7-speed freewheels, all of which feature the reduced "ultra" spacing. I routinely upgrade 5- or 6-cog bikes to 7 cogs.

If you are using a narrow-spaced 6-speed (which I suspect, given the age and nationality of the frame and the fact that the wheel fits without spreading the rear triangle) and an older chain, you may have too much rivet overhang. It is also possible that your chain has stretched; if 24 half-links are longer than 12-1/16", replace it [sheldonbrown.com] with an SRAM PC-58 or other good "8-speed" chain. Read Sheldon's website, in French or in English, to learn more than you ever wanted to know about French bikes.

   RE:5 speed to 6 speed posted by Harris on 11/7/2001 at 12:06:03 AM
Thanks John. I did a few "victory laps" today on the Le Jeunne and the 6 speed seemed to work fine. {probably could use some additional chainlength for the larger cogs) Just wanted to take a spin before I put the original tubularr wheels back on......the rear one is being professionally trued. I wish I had some Peugeot decals to put on the Le juenne to go with the red white and blue Made in France decal.

AGE / VALUE:   Peugeot PX10 redux posted by: Harris on 11/6/2001 at 7:45:57 PM
I was entertained by the thread relating to my auction of a PX10 on ebay. In response to several emails...........indead the sale is a done deal.
Funny perspective on lightweight pricing. It is almost considered an inactive market in the US. I think we are thrown off by the flood of Peugeots that came to the US in the 70s. IN the early 60s......apparently they were not produced in large #s. If you grew up in a country that worshiped bicycle races.......Peugeot was the equivalent of Ferrari in race cars. Eddie Merxx rode Peugeots.
So I guess......the bike I sold......unbeknownst to us US guys......is among the most sought after bikes.........and apparently the condition of the one that I had mad it worth 5X more that the next best example that has surfaced.
I understand that the 56 on the PX10 website might be for sale shortly...that will be interesting. My bike is now shown on that website......as coincidently the only example they had was a rustball. I didnt want to hype my auction..but the PO of the bike was told by the Paris bike shop owner when he bought the bike used in 63 that the bike had been in the Tour de France.Anyway.....Ive enjoyed my crossover from balloon tire bikes and havent decided what to do for an encore.............

    Peugeot PX10 redux posted by John E on 11/6/2001 at 11:37:32 PM
Thanks for posting, Harris. I think most of us were impressed by the bike and its condition, but absolutely stunned by the price it fetched. Congratulations! You are right that most Americans regard Peugeot as simply the "Schwinn of France," but I guess that should make the PX-10 the "Paramount of France."

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Peugeot PX10 redux posted by Walter on 11/7/2001 at 12:16:12 AM
I have to admit I was vocal with my surprise at the final price. The bike was definitely very clean. I join John in congratulating you. I'm still mystified that the Wastyn 6 Day Racer completely whiffed.

AGE / VALUE:   Strange world makes one scream! posted by: Jon on 11/6/2001 at 6:38:14 PM
A Sears Screamer just sold on ebay for $1000 (#1025183576). I think it's odd that a not so rare 1960's muscle bike brings $1000 and just last month a fantastic 1930's Schwinn all original custom track bike didn't even gat a $1500 starting bid, and this bike was a piece of artwork. Now I know why Saers called it the Screamer!

   collectibilty versus quality posted by John E on 11/6/2001 at 7:28:47 PM
Check out the cheap stamped brake bridge and the funky dual rear caliper setup. You have to admit most bikes don't have emergency brakes. This one drew alot of interest, judging from the variety of multi-hundred-dollar bids, but I wonder how long this "collectible" kids' bikes fad will continue.

I agree with your assessment -- quality and collectibility are not consistently well-correlated.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Strange world makes one scream! posted by Walter on 11/7/2001 at 1:29:46 AM
That Wastyn 6 Day racer does haunt me. Not that I could ever have justified buying it but it's a genuine historical piece wheras this, when you get to it, is a knockoff of a Schwinn Krate. Yes it's a vintage knockoff but..Well I don't get it. Not that there's any law that says I have to get it. I don't share the Musclebike fad either. They bring back fond memories but if I just had to have one I'd buy a new repop.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Strange world makes one scream! posted by Andrew on 11/7/2001 at 12:32:41 PM
It gets worse, a Kate Grey Ghost is bid to $2,700 as we speak! To each his own. I'll be patient, and wait for that great old lightweight that's tucked away in some garage!

   don't give up! posted by John E on 11/7/2001 at 3:31:29 PM
Keep looking for that "great old lightweight." As long as the frame is sound (beware of interior and exterior rust, hidden cracks, and poorly-made repairs) and the price is right, grab anything which fits you and which appeals to you for aesthetic, historic, nostalgic, or other reasons. I got my Capo for $20 at a yard sale, because I was the only potential buyer who realized that this was not just some old off-brand equivalent of a Peugeot UO-8 or Steyr Clubman.

   RE:don't give up! posted by desmo on 11/8/2001 at 1:23:57 AM
I can see little rhyme or reason for the proclivities of the high roller bike collectors. They seem focused on a few "names" and little else. There are tons of beautiful, well-made unusual and dare I say, very "collectable" bikes that just never appear on their radar screens. I'd love a Herse and my vintage Cinelli is a joy to ride or just ponder, but I find the collector's vision incredibly narrowly focused. I don't think I'll ever "get it".

AGE / VALUE:   Saved and back in use posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 11/5/2001 at 4:47:45 PM
I beat the scrap man by hours and found the high flange British Hub (BH) in a coffee can. All there, minus the axle and cones. I got it together, polished these silly and they're in rims and back in use! To have had these go to scrap would have been a real shame, these are lovely hubs and they spin so nice.

AGE / VALUE:   Saved and back in use posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 11/5/2001 at 4:47:45 PM
I beat the scrap man by hours and found the high flange British Hub (BH) in a coffee can. All there, minus the axle and cones. I got it together, polished these silly and they're in rims and back in use! To have had these go to scrap would have been a real shame, these are lovely hubs and they spin so nice.

AGE / VALUE:   How are your alloy parts? unpleasent surprise posted by: ChristopherRobin2@starmail.com on 11/5/2001 at 4:38:46 PM
I picked up a Raleigh grand Prix with the GB alloy stem. It is broken off like half of it just broke away. It was down below the top nut and top race and I would never had known as it was inside the steer tube. Now to be out riding this thing and lean down and ride it and have this part fail and break off would not have been nice. I saved the alloy bars and Weinmann brakes and white Carlton hoods but I'll just switch the bars out all together. Sounds terrible I know but it is white and I only got it for the R nuts. I mean, It isn't a 531 bike so why bother? I'll hang it up after the overhaul. There is a nice green one on e- bay right now I believe it's a fixed gear.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   How are your alloy parts? unpleasent surprise posted by Jonathan on 11/5/2001 at 8:34:22 PM
Are you suggesting a thorough check of our vintage GP headsets are a good idea? You know, that's one area that I avoid checking regularly, despite its relative easiness. I mean, what does it take to unscrew
an hex bolt and lift the stem up for a look? I was fixing a '77 Varsity that was causing some concern for the rider. Turns out, the locking wedge was the wrong size for the steering tube!! I mean, what ITIOT would put a smaller sized wedge? The only reason it didn't completely fail was that it had gotten cocked at an angle inside the tube, but very little surface area was employed to resist the steering torque.
What's even more remarkable is that ANYONE would ride a bike that waffled around that much in the frontend. I wish I could be like you, but I can't seem to chuck even blown seatstay Raleighs from the bikeboom.

   old alloy parts and safety posted by John E on 11/6/2001 at 2:37:08 PM
Last year, Keith posted his safety concerns regarding those of us who ride vintage equipment. Even before he posted that timely warning, I had replaced the beautiful, period-correct GB stem on the 1960 Capo with a late-1980s NOS Specialized piece, and the original French stem on the 1982 Peugeot with a brand-new Salsa. I am about to replace the original 1982 Modolo crankset on the Bianchi with a near-NOS mid-1990s Campy set. The purists will cringe, but having snapped cranks, frames, axles, and a hub flange while riding, I never want to snap a chain, handlebar stem, handlebar, or fork.

AGE / VALUE:   Campagnolo LF hubs (FB style) posted by: Steve Sklar on 11/5/2001 at 1:59:44 PM
I own a set of Campagnolo High Flange (FB style) hubs. These are the three piece type with a steel hub center and alloy flanges. They have the campy emblem on the hub shaft. I know they were made between 1953 and 1958.
I've been trying to determine through various other site what this wheelset is worth approximately? It also has the correct vintage rims on it .. the type that has the machined sidewalls (not like today's Mavics of anything) to help the brakepads brake better.

They spin smoothly, no rust, look great .. normal Campy stuff.

Does anyone know the approximate value of these hubs?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Campagnolo LF hubs (FB style) posted by Jeff on 11/8/2001 at 11:59:45 PM
The price would depend on the exchange rate, but I would venture around 40 bucks new.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   frejus racing? 10 speed posted by: rene zambrano on 11/4/2001 at 5:47:19 AM
my pops has a very old 10 speedd bike with badges reading frejus. also mentions something about the olympics on one sticker. all id's are faded, so hard to read. was campy equipped, but i replaced many of the old parts with shimano many years ago when i didn't recognize the whole resto thing. i am pretty sure the rims were campy too. rims very old & pitted, i kind og remember the cranks being steel, but could have been aluminum also. still have the old parts somewhere, but i do know that the rear der. was trashed when the rear wheel flexed into it on a dipped turn. anyone know anything about this brand. think it was french.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   frejus racing? 10 speed posted by Warren on 11/4/2001 at 4:15:20 PM
Go http://www.sheldonbrown.com/vrbn-a-f.html#frejus

Obviously you may want to put EVERY original part back on the bike. Be aware that there are lover end models...there is one on e-bay right now. The bikes have to be fairly clean to get the priced quoted above.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   frejus racing? 10 speed posted by Warren on 11/4/2001 at 4:18:41 PM
Freudian slip..(I must adore these)...LOWER end bikes

AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by: Patrick J. on 11/4/2001 at 2:47:54 AM
An old friend is willing to part with his '71-'73 Campy equipped Masi.The bike is in mint condition and I want to make a reasonable offer without overextending myself.Does the reputation of the manufacturer warrant an offer over$1000?When does a classic become a collectors'item?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by Walter on 11/4/2001 at 12:53:36 PM
A Masi of that vintage could go for $1K on a site like eBay. I doubt very seriously a shop would pay that though. A local collector might but then again might not.

There is a Vintage Lightweight Price Guide on the net and it would cetainly quote a price in that range. However, from what I've seen on eBay the Guides prices might be a little high. Since you're dealing with a friend I agree hardball negotiating is not kosher. I still think that if you offer 750-800$ and be willing to go a bit higher if you really want the bike you won't insult your friend and you'll have a classic bike and he'll have a fair price for something he's willing to sell.

If 1K is the price your friend is thinking then getting a little less w/o having to hassle with eBay and being able to sell to a friend might be appealing. It would be to me.

Masi is, by 1 definition, 1 of the "Big Three" when it comes to collectibility. The others being Cinelli and DeRosa. As an avid eBay watcher I can tell you that Cinellis of that vintage bring alot more bids than Masis, though Masis certainly attract attention. Heritage, racing history and original build quality are the reasons why. I have to point out that a '63 Peugeot went for 7100 just recently. To me this is non-sensical and I don't think it is the start of a trend. Someone in Japan REALLY wanted that bike.

Good luck.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by Rudgematch on 11/4/2001 at 4:53:35 PM
If in truly mint condition, buy it.
You won't have trouble selling it should you want to, and if you really love it, that's definitely a fair price.

What size? If you don't want it, others will!

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by Patrick J. on 11/4/2001 at 10:34:08 PM
I appreciate the sage advice regarding the Masi.Obviously candor is of the utmost importance in matters of twenty year friendships and 30 year old Masi's!I must say,I learn as much on this site from postings that don't warrant a response as from those that are summarily ignored.$7100??!!On your left...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by Art on 11/5/2001 at 2:36:24 AM
If it is an Italian built Masi it is worth more. If it can be determined that it was built by Mario Confente even more. I have an 82 California built one that is worth $1000. I would venture that this bike is worth considerably more. Check e-bay.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by Chuck Schmidt on 11/6/2001 at 6:17:43 PM
Here's a '72 Italian Masi that sold for $2400 on eBay last week:

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   '72 Masi posted by Walter on 11/7/2001 at 12:24:18 AM
Wow! Makes me look chintsy whichg was not my intent. I'll go out on a limb and conjecture the winner was Japanese. When those guys see a bike they like the dollars (and yen) fly.

Whatever price you determine is fair so long as you both agree. 20 year friendships are rare.

FOR SALE:   1955 Peugeot posted by: Ray on 11/4/2001 at 1:26:55 AM
Don't miss out, last day. Great classic French bike for sale on ebay and yes it is mine.

   RE:FOR SALE:   1955 Peugeot posted by Oscar on 11/4/2001 at 1:07:07 PM
Pretty bike! You sound like you'll miss it when it's gone.

   RE:RE:FOR SALE:   1955 Peugeot posted by Ray on 11/4/2001 at 4:48:15 PM
Just like the old joke, My wife says either the bikes go or she does. Sure gonna miss her ;)

AGE / VALUE:   a very early WINDSOR posted by: Ryan on 11/3/2001 at 11:18:09 PM
wanting any information on a very early road bike i have recently discovered. all named parts are french, wheels are metal 27in, rear hub has 3gears on one side and one on the other, brakes are odd looking sidepulls, frame has very ornate lugs and writing looks as if it has been painted on in some form. looks very similar to early Malvern Star or Pope track bike between 1910 ans 1920. i would love any information on this bike.

   3 x 1 posted by oscar@freewheeling.com on 11/4/2001 at 1:11:39 PM
The three gears on one side and 1 on the other dates this as a really old racer. Early 1950's or earlier(???). The single cog is probably fixed, and the three are on a freewheel. What kind of derailleur does it have.

I have a feeling that Christopher Robin just sprang out of bed after getting this mental vibe.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   a very early WINDSOR posted by Walter on 11/7/2001 at 8:43:38 PM
This does sound like an interesting early racer and I'd love to see pics.

Oscar, how would the 3X1 work? I've seen flip-flop freewheel/fixed with single cogs but don't see how it could work w/o removing the derailleur (and then shortening the chain) in this case. The pressure from resisting the fixed gear would bend the derailleur, I'd think. But then, I can think of no reason for both cogs to be freewheel.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   a very early WINDSOR posted by Oscar on 11/8/2001 at 1:37:16 AM
I've seen 5 x 1 free/fixed flipflops, but i've never seen the bike they come from. Maybe they didn't care about countering the drivetrain since they had brakes. My fixed has front and rear brakes, and they do all the stoping for me.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   a very early WINDSOR posted by Walter on 11/8/2001 at 3:12:06 AM
Makes sense. I run a front brake on my fixie and it does the largest part of the stopping. No way of knowing w/o experimenting if a rear derailleur operating as a chain tensioner would work or not. I hope Ryan posys some pics. I always like looking at the old racers and this one looks to be something I've never seen.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Schwinn posted by: Andrew on 11/3/2001 at 11:46:08 AM
Wanted to know what was the first massed produced Schwinn lightweight( bit of a oximoron) with 27" wheel, multi-speeds, ect.s

   Schwinn road bikes posted by John E on 11/3/2001 at 2:11:55 PM
The Paramounts go back to the 1930s [www.waterfordbikes.com], but many early specimens used 3-speed hub gears. The familiar (originally 8-speed) Varsity and Continental 10-speeds were introduced in 1960 ["The Dancing Chain"].

AGE / VALUE:   Nishiki Road Compe posted by: John on 11/3/2001 at 12:12:01 AM
Picked up a Nishiki Road Compe frame & fork and wondering if any of you know much about it.

It seems fairly high quality. It has a transfer "chrome-molybendum double butted tubing" with Nishiki logo surrounded by palmares. Suntour forged drop-outs & fork ends. Seat-post diameter is 26.8 or 27.0. Came with a Sugino cotterless-style bottom bracket, unbranded headset and Grand Compe stem which is smaller diameter than standard 1" steerer.

I really liked the aesthetics: Bright almost-olive green with matte-black head tube, very long-point lugs, chrome head lugs-fork crown-fork/stay ends, gold lettering in the older-Japanese? font I've seen on some other Nishiki's.

Owner said it had Shimano shifting with Weinnmann brakes.

What do you think?

     Nishiki Road Compe posted by John E on 11/3/2001 at 2:27:18 PM
I have always liked the appearance of the Road Compe, even though one can easily find a more responsive road racing frame. Nishiki introduced the Road Compe in 1972, when I worked at Bikecology/Supergo. It was intended as a racing-oriented step up from the SemiPro (by then renamed the Competition), which had a d.b. Ishiwata CrMo main triangle. I THINK the Road Compe had CrMo forks and stays, as well. The original equipment on the early specimens included Sugino Mighty Compe crankset w/ 54-44 rings, SunTour derailleurs with downtube shifters, DiaCompe center-pull brakes (Weimannn copies), and gold SunTour 14-24 five-speed freewheel. I copied the Road Compe gear ratios when I rode my SemiPro in the 1972 Los Angeles Wheelmen Double Century, and drew jeers from one touring-geared participant, who said, "You just shifted across the cog block and changed your ratio by only a few [gear]-inches!" (He should have seen my friend's 14-18 "corncob" straight block.)