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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

AGE / VALUE:   Early braze-Ons posted by: desmo on 2/7/2001 at 11:03:26 AM
While browsing ebay this morning I came across a nice original looking chrome 50s English Meteor tourer with full Campy Record/Vanqueur 999 and lo and behold braze-on shifter bosses and cable guides! My question is, when did braze-on shifter bosses first appear? I imagine someone must have done braze-on guides WAY back. But when?

Oh here's the URL for the bike. Nice (but large) photos.


   Early braze-Ons posted by John E on 2/7/2001 at 11:53:16 AM
This does not answer your question, but the 1960 Varsinentals had braze-on shifter mountings (Simplex rear, "suicide" Simplex front). Braze-ons are great, provided that they are compatible with the equipment you want. An earlier owner of my Peugeot chiseled off the shifter braze-ons and replaced the original Simplex levers with a Campy clamp-on set.

   RE:Early braze-Ons posted by Art on 2/7/2001 at 12:39:31 PM
I love bikes like this, although it looks like it is going to be fairly expensive. At $500 the reserve isn't met. I have a couple of questions about this bike, though. Is that a light holder that is bolted to the top of the stem/bars? I can't tell what it is. I have seen front racks like that before and they are secured by the center brake bolt and usually by braze-ons on the fork blades. I can't see them. Do you think they're there?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Early braze-Ons posted by Keith on 2/7/2001 at 1:13:08 PM
Did any of you notice the 50s Armstrong with old Campy Gran Sport and barcons that went for $177 about a week ago?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Early braze-Ons posted by Oscar on 2/8/2001 at 6:39:47 AM
I might be at the stage where I have enough bikes, but now I need a full chrome one. Beautiful.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Early braze-Ons posted by Keith on 2/8/2001 at 8:29:59 AM
I think extensive brazeons and other inovations were available early on -- 50s or earlier, from French Rene Herse, and I would suspect other builders as well.

   VALUE:   Meteor posted by John E on 2/8/2001 at 10:38:24 AM
FYI, someone has met the $500 sub-reserve ante. I may send the seller an email to ask whether he is willing to let me see (or ride?!) the bike. It is remarkably similar to my Capo in age, original components, materials, and quality, although it looks alot sharper! Since the eBay 1956 Peugeot Randonneur went for $500+ and the 1960 Continental sold for $800+, I will be interested to see what price this bike, with arguably superior components and frame but less-pristine condition, fetches.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Early braze-Ons posted by Keith on 2/9/2001 at 6:07:09 AM
The Data Book depicts shifter brazeons with internal cable routing from 1947 and 1949.

AGE / VALUE:   It's not telling me about itself! posted by: ChristopherRobin@starmail.com on 2/7/2001 at 10:05:46 AM
Can someone please tell me some information about this bike? Please. It is a Gubbbilato. The word Cicli is on the badge. I took the fork out to clean and polish it and I discovered a stamping on the steer tube that says "58" I am thinking this is the year it was made but I am likely wrong to think that because the Campy componets look to modern to me. Why is it that this Campy stuff isn't labeled with the model name? Aren't grupos named? Where does it say the name?

I'm a Campy collector because I like it and know enough to search for it but I seldon know what I have when I find it. Things sit in boxes labeled "Wish I knew"

How do I date this thing?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   It's not telling me about itself! posted by Keith on 2/7/2001 at 10:54:12 AM
Describe the derailluers with as much detail as possible. Does the rear derailleur appear to be made from stamped steel, aluminum, or is it chromed? Is the parallelogram horizontal or vertical? Is the front derailleur a push-rod enclosed in a sort of box, or is it a parallelogram? And is the parallelogram slanted, like a Suntour (this would indicate more recent vintage Campy). Modern Campy stuff has the model name screen painted on, and it can wear off, and that could account for the lack of a name. Is the front plate of the parallelogram literally plain -- no markings or words at all? Honor St. Tulio, and let us know, please.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   It's not telling me about itself! posted by Kevin K on 2/7/2001 at 12:38:17 PM
Hi. The "58" on the steertube should be the frame size, at least that is what I've been shown. Kevin

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   It's not telling me about itself! posted by Brian L. on 2/8/2001 at 6:29:25 AM
CR - do you have an email address that works?

Are you still interested in selling/trading for this bike? I LOVE Italian steel.


   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:It's dirty, silent and mysterious! posted by ChristopherRobin@starmail.com on 2/8/2001 at 4:15:21 PM
This was not cleaned very often, if ever! The componets have some nicks, it is not a new showpiece, but a very nice rider. Thanks for the tip. Soon it will no longer be a very dirty, gritty bike. Today I saw the cutaway bottombracket. A simplex seat post adjuster, regina chain, wheels are 700 X 23C Continental "Super sport". Replacing a broken spoke, these are double butted I think, new cables, a full tune up, new skins, trueing, polishing, polishing, polishing, I keep my Dunelts in better shape than this Campy equiped bike. These are newer componets, it shifts like a dream!
Brian I will e-mail you!

AGE / VALUE:   sanyo dynapower lighting set posted by: Paul on 2/6/2001 at 8:22:08 PM
I've just found a sanyo lighting set in a heap of cycle stuff i was given.Its still in its box, it has a little wheel that drops down under the frame on to the back wheel. Would it be out of place on my Raleigh Super-course. Its beautifully made, and can't be that recent?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   sanyo dynapower lighting set posted by Keith on 2/7/2001 at 6:49:26 AM
I say go for it because it makes your bike more useful. Nice mudguards, a rack, and a Carradice saddlebag would be apropriate as well.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   sanyo dynapower lighting set posted by sam on 2/8/2001 at 7:30:45 AM
saw the same set-up on a raleigh.had to look close to see the thing,really like that--sam

AGE / VALUE:   INFO ON PHILLIPS BIKES posted by: Kevin K on 2/6/2001 at 12:46:07 PM
Hi Please see the English Roadster section. Thanks, Kevin

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Japanese posted by: ART on 2/6/2001 at 7:21:41 AM
What are the best of the best makes and models of Japanese built bikes...I really don't know much about them.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Japanese posted by Keith on 2/6/2001 at 8:05:37 AM
Sheldon has a site on Japapanese bikes that's useful to read, and Cycles de Oro mentions a couple of exotic marks, like 3 Rensho. My experience with Japanese bikes reflects John's mentioned below. I think craftsmanship was good all along, but many of the big names early on (e.g. Fuji, Nishiki) were fairly heavy and unresponsive. By the late 70s and 80s, the ride quality improved, and more brands were being imported. Also, big names like Schwinn and Raleigh had frames made in Japan before Taiwan came into the picture. Three Japanese bikes I've owned have these qualities: (1) Miyata Pro (cutout lugs and bottom brack, tight racing geometry, triple butted tubing, Dura Ace/600 groupo); (2) Lotus Competition, Columbus tubing, race geometry, chomed lugs with cutouts, chromed pantographed fork crown, full Campy Nouvo Record groupo (very Italian); and (3) Dave Scott Ironman Centurian (Tange No. 1 tubing, Ultegra 7-speed -- first production triathlon bike). I feel each of these bikes is on par with many top-end European machines. Other bikes of note are the Bridgestone RB-1, and the current Rivendell Atlantis. Miyata has a rich history -- there is a site operated by a U.S. distributor that sells older lugged frames that can be found with any search engine. Miyata draws its own tubing, and pioneered triple butted splined tubing.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Japanese posted by Paul on 2/6/2001 at 8:41:08 PM
I loved riding my centurian in the 70s, i don't know if it was the LSD or not. Those tricky little gear levers coming out of the end of the handlebars, were cool.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Japanese posted by Brian L. on 2/7/2001 at 5:27:23 PM
Art, permanent error message on your email, so please see below:

> Finally got the Mercier running and quite a nice piece it is. Built it up
> as follows: Wheels are 27" alloy rims with Campy Tipo hubs from the
> I got at a garage sale. SunTour Cyclone rear and cheesy (but crisp
> shifting) Shimano Exage front chager with Sugino 175 x 48/38/26 cranks and
> original Shimano ATB clipless. Old SunTour barcons (also from you I
> believe). The bike is sporting "clip-on" style semi-drop bars not unlike
> turn of the century track photos. They're actually cheap swept back
> bars mounted upside down and reamed to accept the barcons. A bit like
> moustache bars but with some drop. Still hurt my wrists a bit on a long
> ride, but they look kind of cool and offer something different from my
> of traditional drop bars. SunTour Superbe and DiaCompe sidepulls front
> rear respectively. The bike is light and responsive, why did you get rid
> it? One too many frames/bikes? Anyway, thank again.
> Brian

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Japanese posted by Art on 2/8/2001 at 6:29:56 AM
That sounds great, Brian. I had a typo in my e-mail address to you and I think that error still haunts our correspondence. Address on this post is correct for future reference. The Mercier was an interesting frame, although a bit short for me along the top tube. I had built it up once with a Stronglight crank and Campy stuff, and then later with a Shimano AX dura ace/600 groupo and commuted on it for a while but I just got tired of it. I knew it was a pretty interesting frame, real French, vitus drops etc. but I periodically move stuff on. I guess it's a way to justify finding new stuff. I'm glad you're happy with it. Now that my son has discovered riding his own bike, I got rid of my Schwinn Twinn. I'm keeping the Paramount tandem, but I think it won't see much use. I thought you'd like to know that the Diamondback I got from you is my jump-on-it-and-go bike. If the boys need me to go with them somewhere closeby or if I have to find them for dinner, it's a bike I ride with jeans and tennis shoes. It looks like such a beater, that I don't worry about it being stolen, but it is a pretty great example of an early mountain bike. Great bars, brakes, and the sprung seat tube adjuster is way cool. Thanks Brian. Art

AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn Volare? posted by: desmo on 2/5/2001 at 10:23:53 AM
Kind of an interesting Japanese made Schwinn on ebay. 531 with full 70s Dura Ace gruppo. Never seen one of these.


   Very nice! Panasonic, perhaps? posted by John E on 2/5/2001 at 10:50:18 AM
It looks *very* good to me, but I am always a sucker for fancy chrome-plated lugs and half-stays. Although it is a rare and probably great ride, I fear its Japanese pedigree will restrict its value as a collectible, at least in today's Eurocentric market. I have no idea what price it will fetch on eBay.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn Volare? posted by Keith on 2/5/2001 at 11:00:29 AM
I saw it too. Cool bike, and the pictures are great. That being said, I see Paramounts go for $400-$750 on ebay (or just not sell if the buyer has a higher reserve), even though people TALK about them being worth $800-$1200 (I bought a nice '76 Paramount about a year ago for well under $400 from a DEALER in vintage bikes). The Schwinn-approved badge suggests it is not a Chigago bike -- perhaps the Volare was made in Japan along with the Voyagers. The lugs are chrome but plain. The early Dura Ace is interesting, and would function as well as the Campy NR on the Paramount, but is not nearly as desirable from a collecting standpoint. My shot in the dark would be about $200-250, or about one-half of the minimum bid, with all due respect to the seller.

   agree regarding current value posted by John E on 2/6/2001 at 6:19:50 AM
I agree, Keith. As Sheldon notes, Japanese frames and components are not highly prized in today's collector's market. The real question, for which I do not have an answer, is the ride quality of the better mid-1970s Japanese frames. During the 1980s, Japan built plenty of excellent frames, but circa 1970, their responsiveness was mediocre or worse.

   RE:agree regarding current value posted by Keith on 2/6/2001 at 12:04:18 PM
I wonder about the ride quality too. I've ridden the early 70s Fujis and Nishikis, and they ride like tanks. With the Dura Ace, I suppose this is 1975 or so? Anyway, I'd think there's a possibility that it has a nicer ride due to 531 tubing and Schwinn specs. I think the mid-70s Voyager I have is pretty good in that respect. I wouldn't pay a lot just to find out, though. Any Volare owners out there?

   early 1970s Japanese frames posted by John E on 2/6/2001 at 1:13:57 PM
Despite its double-butted Ishiwata CrMo tubing, my 1971 American Eagle SemiPro (Nishiki Competition) had a mushy, dead-feeling frame which weighed as much as a straight-gauge, plain carbon steel Peugeot U0-8. When the Nishiki frame broke and I transplanted its wheels, crankset, derailleurs, and pedals onto the Peugeot, I *greatly* preferred the resulting Frankensteinian creation over either original. My '1961 Capo has a soft main triangle and long Reynolds 531 "spaghetti" stays engineered for long tours over European cobblestones, but it somehow feels livelier and more resilient than the Nishiki did.

I, too, would like to hear from anyone with experience with a mid-to-late 1970s Japanese frame.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Schwinn Volare? posted by Walter on 2/6/2001 at 3:27:01 PM
As a youngster in the late 70s I "worked" for a while in a Schwinn shop in N. Miami Beach. The owner called me an "apprentice." He got some free help mostly with mundane stuff like tube patching (remember when shops did that?) and I got to be around bikes. Nobody knew then but it was about the last hurrah for the "Varsinental" type bikes. I don't remember a Volare. A chrome LeTour that sold for something like 300$ was the top liner that we carried. Real nice ride as I recall but my frame of reference was pretty limitted. While there I put together an old English frame that found its way into a Schwinn shop and it became my first road bike. It was rapidly replaced by a lower line Motobecane of which I still have very fond memories. I guess the Schwinn lore didn't rub off! Fast forward to 2001 and I'm nearing completion on a 1970s LeTour based fixed gear. I'll give you riding impressions as they come in.
Btw the shop didn't survive the 80s. Nor did a Raleigh shop where I picked up some alloy wheels to replace the steel Rigidas on my Motobecane. In fact most of the local shops I frequented as a kid were gone before I left for college.

WANTED:   SMALL PART NEEDED posted by: Art on 2/5/2001 at 8:01:28 AM
I need a Stronglight crank arm dust cap. I only need one. I don't know if there are different styles, but the one I need and the only one I've ever seen, is silver, says Stronglight, made in France, is screw on, and has a hex head hole in the middle.

   RE:WANTED:   SMALL PART NEEDED posted by WIngs on 2/6/2001 at 8:57:52 PM
I have one but it says "STRONGLIGHT" on top with a slot with a circle in the center (screw driver removal) and then it says "FRANCE" on the bottom. I only have one of that type.
I would part with it.

I also have a matched pair on a bike that say "S" on top and "FRANCE" on the bottom. Also a slot in the center for a screw driver. So there are at least 3 designs available!

   RE:WANTED:   SMALL PART NEEDED posted by Clyde on 2/7/2001 at 10:15:06 PM
Got your address and will mail one as you described (hex removal).

   RE:RE:WANTED:   SMALL PART NEEDED posted by Art on 2/8/2001 at 6:34:39 AM
Thanks, Clyde. Wings, I think Clyde has the one I need. I wasn't familiar with the slotted head one, or if I had seen it, I had forgotten it. Thanks for the offer, but I don't need one now. It is good to know where one is if someone needs one. Thanks. Art.

MISC:   Warm feet, real neat! posted by: Oscar on 2/3/2001 at 9:21:25 PM
I can bundle everything up but my feet for a winter ride. There's only so many layers of socks you can wear under your shoes. I found a great, cheap way to keep my feet warm while winter riding. Totes overshoes! They keep the wind out, and fit well in the toe clips.

One great thing about riding in cold weather - I usually fall into the most sound sleep afterwards.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by: Larry on 2/3/2001 at 11:27:01 AM
Does anyone know the correct saddle for a 1972 Schwinn Supersport? Brooks? Schwinn? Please post! Thanks.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Bob Hufford on 2/3/2001 at 7:53:20 PM
From the '72 spec book: The men's style Super Sport is equipped with the Brooks B-15 all-leather saddle. The ladies' style is equipped with a Schwinn-Approved nylon saddle with a spring undercarriage

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Larry on 2/4/2001 at 10:09:52 AM
Thanks so much Bob.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Eric Amlie on 2/5/2001 at 10:52:05 AM
I recently picked up a '72 women's Super Sport at a thrift store ($1.00!). It had a Brooks B15 on it. This may have been put on later but the rest of the bike looked to be original.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Oscar on 2/5/2001 at 9:35:00 PM
I think the leather saddle was an option for women, but it was believed that the ladyfolk wouldn't be interested in a saddle that wasn't soft and cushy. A B-15 for a buck with a free bike!

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Larry AKA leftie on 2/6/2001 at 6:03:22 PM
Thanks Eric, If you want to sell that B-15? Please let me know! I looking for one

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Eric Amlie on 2/7/2001 at 7:28:10 AM
Sorry Larry, I would like to help you but I'm going to put the seat on a '66 Super Sport that I'm fixing up.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Correct Saddle for 72 supersport posted by Larry on 2/7/2001 at 9:47:54 AM
Thanks! No problem Eric! I don't blame you a bit.

AGE / VALUE:   Bicycle stands posted by: Walter on 2/3/2001 at 9:12:42 AM
I remember a thread about this topic awhile ago. I found a company called Grandstand (gstand.com) in Cal who makes a rear-wheel stand. I just rec'd 3 and can report that they work as claimed. My 2 projects and my Univega all stand up nicely w/o leaning on anything. They're getting 19.99 plus 5$ shipping for any amount. Kind of pricey perhaps but there doesn't seem to be alot of competition and if you've got floor space it is cheaper than the various "hanger" and wall mount stands in the catalogs.

This is srictly FYI I have no association whatsoever and live on the other side of the country. Just thought the info might be useful.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Bicycle stands posted by Bruce VR aka "The" Eisentraut fan on 2/6/2001 at 1:18:33 AM
I started that thread... Cool deal, I'll have to check it out! $20 bucks is cheap.

Turns out Minoura make a stand (the DS-10), but I can't find anyone who stocks it in the US... It's about $28, it looks perfect for the job...

Thanks for the input!

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Bicycle stands posted by Walter on 2/6/2001 at 3:10:11 PM
Glad to help.

MISC:   Pierce Arrow Shaft Drive posted by: Art on 2/2/2001 at 12:07:32 PM
Interesting photos of a Pierce Arrow on ebay. Check out that front fork! # 550100680.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Stem regrets posted by: Keith on 2/2/2001 at 7:54:50 AM
There's a Peugeot track bike on ebay that matches the one I have hanging on my office wall. But the one on ebay has an ajustable lugged stem. My bike came with the same stem, but in 1974, I thought it was heavy, ugly, and outdated, so I replaced it with a more modern aluminum one. I threw away the lugged stem. AHGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Stem regrets posted by ChristopherRobin@starmail.com on 2/3/2001 at 9:28:19 AM
We all have done something like this at one time or another. I get up at 3:22 A.M. and look at this Italian bike I pulled from the trash. I tell myself this is Campy equpied and I stare at it in disbelief.

I guess this is why Im trying to learn all that I can about the various makes and models and parts. I do not want to make anymore mistakes like I already have. I am always holding something in my hands and thinking to myself "Darned if I know what it is to or when it was made, or what it is worth.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Stem regrets posted by Keith on 2/5/2001 at 11:03:44 AM
Honest to God I've had DREAMS about finding Campy-equiped bikes in the trash or at garage sales -- but only dreams.

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Stem regrets posted by ChristopherRobin@starmail.com on 2/7/2001 at 10:17:44 AM
When you do find something out there, I hope it is something you have never heard of before with some strange name. Nothing like a anoying mystery to go with a good find.

MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by: Art on 2/1/2001 at 8:53:16 AM
Since my son, who is almost 10, was a baby I've had him on a bike. First in a bike seat, then an alley cat, tag-a-long, then the Schwinn middleweight. I believed that he was learning some things about bike safety, stamina, balance, and the love of riding. I had bought him a 20"in wheeled bike with a coaster brake and a hand brake several years ago. I had him in training wheels, but because we live on a hill, he had a hard time with it. A year or so ago, I took him to the park and I taught him to ride without training wheels, using the easy hill method I had read about in Bicycling magazine. He got the hang of it, but had no concept of steering or braking. We ended the day with him running into the only tree in the middle of the park. He wasn't interested in riding his own bike much anymore. He rode with me or was content to ride his scooter. I wanted to push him more with his bike, but in my old age I have tried to back off making my agenda, everybody elses. Then a new boy showed up in the neighborhood, with a bike. My soon and he pal-ed around, but my guy was working real hard trying to stay up with bike on his scooter. I asked him if he wanted his bike, and he said yes, but he was embarassed because he really couldn't ride it. I got it ready to go, and before I could turn around, he was on it, down the street, riding like he had been doing it forever. I was amazed. He still crashes, but he has no fear. We went on a long canal ride and he drilled his buddy. He has a lot of strength...he was up out of the saddle from the start, working that single speed. He didn't want to stop. I had to peddle to stay with him. At one point he yelled, Can I go fast, Daddy! music to my ears. If this guy could sleep with his bike he would. The first thing out of his mouth in the morning is "can I ride after school today". Yesterday, he asked me if he could get a geared bike, with double hand brakes. I guess I'm sharing this, because at some point I thought all of his riding with me hadn't really affected him very much. Now I see that it has. Also, to see someone so young so excited about this sport and hobby that we love filled me with a great sense of joy. I wanted to share it with someone who could relate. Also, now that he has the bug, already one bike isn't enough. I saw a small road bike once, drop bars, 20? 24? in wheels, behind a Goodwill store. Are they out there? Any leads?

   RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by Walter on 2/1/2001 at 9:36:18 AM
They used to make 24" road bikes. Some were of fine quality. A friend of mine had a Raleigh when we were both kids in the early-mid 70s. Kind of heavy and steel cottered cranks but a nice fast ride. I couldn't keep up on my "muscle-bike." On ebay this past month I saw what looked like a really nice Jr racer 24". Alloy rims Suntour equipped and downtube shifters. Don't think it sold so maybe searching closed auctions? I thought about buying but my little one is 5 and I figured I'd need to store it another 5 years.

   RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by 24" road bikes on 2/1/2001 at 11:35:41 AM
There were several 24" road bikes. I am not near my reference material, so I will have to advise some later or you can write to me.

I believe the '80's Schwinn Caliente was a smaller wheel road style bike - available in '80's girl's mall colors.

If I remember correctly, the Caliente was a mixte style frame - sort of a unisex frame, so it would be good for your young son.

   RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by Kevin K on 2/1/2001 at 11:45:57 AM
Nice story of family and emotion. My 8 year old loves a 75 lime Varsity I found. It's his, he says. He keeps asking me to hold him up over the top tube to see if he's tall enough. He loves the look of old road bikes. My 15 year old just spent big money (all his too) on a mountain bike, but is constantly eyeing a yellow Le Tour I've got. It's fast, he says. My 17 year old was trying to do, and ride, " wheelies" on a 66 Sting Ray I found. Let kids be kids in all of us no matter age. Kevin

   RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by Keith on 2/1/2001 at 12:02:55 PM
There are certainly lots of great small road bikes out there. I've seen the Caliente and 24" Raleighs - both decent bokes and good choices. If you want the best possible fit and performance, you might look into the Terry bikes for women -- the same principles would make for a wonderful kid's bike. Used Terrys show up here and there. There's a shop in St. Louis with a website -- recycledcycles.net (not .com) that always seems to have a good stock of used small road bikes at with fair prices. And there's nothing wrong with a mountain bike for a kid, since they are available with very small frames, and I think many makers offer 24" wheel versions. My 9-year old son has an old Raleigh mountain bike with (Triple Butted splined lugged) 14" or so frame and Suntour thumb friction shifters. He puts in in the granny gear and laughs as he spins around the neighborhood at slow walking speed. He and I play dogfight in the school parking lot -- him on a '73 StingRay, me on a '65 Raleigh 3-speed. And to digress further, I read in a Velo News awhile back that the design of kids bikes -- geometry, etc. makes them inherently less stable and therefore harder for kids to learn to ride. I heard something about someone doing a graduate engineering thesis about an ideal design small kid's bike. Now that's really worth pursuing -- moreso than 11 spockets on the back!

   kids' bikes posted by John E on 2/1/2001 at 2:14:17 PM
Interesting thread, gentlemen!
Son #1, now 16 and 5'9" tall, started with a Mongoose Decade single-speed freestyle bike w/ 20" wheels at age 7, moved up to a Giant Awesome mountain bike w/ 24x1.75" wheels at 10, and has ridden a 17"-framed Specialized Hardrock adult mountain bike since he was 13. Son #2, now almost 12, has a Peugeot US-Express mountain bike w/ 24" wheels and a Giant Voltage hybrid w/ 26" wheels. All of these were garage sale finds. I rode a 26"-wheeled 2-speed Schwinn middleweight (my first bike) at age 12, and a 26"-wheeled, 21"-framed Bianchi Corsa 10-speed road bike at 13.

Partly because small mountain bike frames involve fewer design compromises than comparably-sized road frames, and partly because boys will be boys, I think the typical 12-year-old male is better off with a mountain bike or a hybrid than with a road bike. Son #1 has never wanted a road bike, but son #2 admires my Bianchi and has a a 21" SR road bike waiting for the day he can safely straddle the top tube. (I thought the yellow 1975 ladies' Varsity I recently rescued from a scrap pile would make a good theft-resistant home-to-bus beater, but he will not go near it -- tres uncool!)

   RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by Schwinnderella on 2/1/2001 at 9:11:13 PM
24" wheel Varsity on ebay now #1110574672 Happy Collecting

   RE:RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by Wings on 2/1/2001 at 10:12:36 PM
I have been building four bikes -- 3 for my grandchildren and 1 for my daughter. I drive about 450 miles this weekend to deliver them. The first bike I ever built was for my Grandson when he was 5 yrs old. It was a MightyGoose Mongoose chrome frame with 16 inch wheels, Pitbull rear brake, geared with a colored chainring for hill country. That bike was the first and it was so much fun that is why my garage and house is full of bikes now!
I wish my Dad had been into bikes but it was unusual to see a man on a bike back then. I lived on a bike as a kid. My Grandchildren have a Dad that does not ride. However, they are very discriminating when it come to their bikes. Whenever I would visit them I would always have a recumbent or folder in the truck. Always bikes here when they came over.
The ten year old has a 6 Speed Bmx. Also an aluminum one speed Bmx. He is now getting a new GT Freestyle (Heavy) with dual 990 brakes and Gyro -- with pegs also. My first Gyro work!
The 12 year old has a Formula One Diamond Back (Old Racing bike) and a 24 inch Mountain Bike. He is getting a new aluminum Haro Bmx (Rear V brake) -- great light weight bike -- I have been riding it all week!
My grandaughter may just ride one of these days -- I am waiting.
I also found a great Robinson Aluminum frame that I am still building up (Aheadset, New fork, and stem, Maxxi Holy Roller Tires, etc.) as a spare bike. Lots of fun and -------- all the emails back and forth about the bikes is an added bonus that here I have a bridge of common interest with them ---------This is fantastic also for you Dad's out there!
Comment: 24 inch road bikes - used - are out there as i have seen them quite often. However, I think building up a 24 inch MOUNTAIN BIKE would be much better - in most cases. I think it is also safer (wider tires). I realize that sons (some daughters too) also want to ride somethin similar to their Dad - So the Road Bike may be the thing. Again -- the kids now days have so many options compared to my one used "Iver Johnson".
Bikes become a way of connecting with our children and grandchildren that bridges the barrier of ages. Bikeing is about people!
Great thread of comments!!!!!

   Part of the problem posted by Oscar on 2/2/2001 at 9:10:48 AM
I ought to be ashamed. My 11 year old daughter has a Magna, which I bought from Walmart for $89.

On the redeeming side, my 2 1/2 year old boy has a red, metal tricycle.

   RE:Part of the problem posted by JimW. on 2/2/2001 at 10:49:08 AM
You're not doing so badly. At least you got her a bike of some kind. My daughter and I like to prowl the thrift stores
when she's ready for the next bike. When we find one she likes, we drag it home and refurbish it. It's a lot of fun doing it that way. She's currently on a 24" off-brand road bike (Sterling?), but she's 16 now, and about ready for a taller one. It's time to hit the thrift stores again.

About a year ago, I overheard her talking on the phone to a male friend. I couldn't believe it; she was describing every bike adventure we'd ever had, in detail. It dawned on
me that what she was doing was bragging, to show how hip she was. I guess my master plan is working: she's a hard-core biker. (And very nice kid, also.)

   RE:MISC:   LEARNING TO RIDE posted by Keith on 2/2/2001 at 11:27:20 AM
Go to recycledcycles.net -- there's a 44cm Trek, 47cm Miyata (w/650 wheels), and a 48cm Windsor. I agree kids generally need a Mountain or BMX for most riding -- but wouldn't the road bike be cool too?

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Hey, wanna trade? posted by: Brian L. on 2/1/2001 at 7:55:26 AM
Would like to trade the following entry-level vintage Italian steel for a good quality (so-so finish ok) French, English, Italian or American frameset:

'56c "Bugati, Cicli Milano", white frame/fork with chrome rear triangle, 1/2 fork and head lugs. Stamped dropouts, foil headbadge, tubeset likely straight guage. Overall quality slightly better than UO-8. Finish fair-good with typical scratches and missing decals. Chrome is good. No major rust or dents. Full cable-stop braze-ons, but no water bottle of pump peg. Gruppo is mostly original and in good condition including Valentino changers, cast alloy TTT stem, Monticari steel wheels and Clement white walls, Universal brake levers (no hoods), scuffed Unicantor saddle and new white Benotto bar tape. Non-original but period up-grades include Suntour shifters, Weinman 999 Vanquer brakes and Nitto Randaneour bars. Bike is tuned and thoroughly cleaned. I had this built up with newer parts and commuted on it for a while - rides like a good Italian bike should. Not too heavy for straight-guage and corners well. Cleaning house, wanna deal?

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Montarino Bike posted by: Fred on 1/31/2001 at 1:45:04 PM
Hi Gang! Anybody out there ever heard of a 10 speed "Montarino" bike made in West Germany? I picked it up recently. It has Simplex derailleurs and shifters, Shurmann chrome wheels made in Germany with Weco hubs also made in Germany. The crank is cottered. Brakes and levers are Altshuburgerer also made on W. Germany. Seat says Italia Touring. Bike is all original and is even wired for front and rear lightsfrom the factory, but never hooked up. Color is a wierd gold/green with a black head tube. Any idea of the year or value?

Thanks for looking and any responses,

   Simplex posted by John E on 1/31/2001 at 8:34:38 PM
Are you familiar with the plastic Simplex shifters and derailleurs that came on the Peugeot U0-8s of the 1970s? Do you have these, or something more recent? Cottered steel cranks were pretty much out of favor by 1980 or so.

   RE:Simplex posted by FRED on 2/1/2001 at 7:04:29 AM
Yes, they are the same. I have a couple of old Peugeot's home.

   late 1960s / early 1970s posted by John E on 2/1/2001 at 1:38:43 PM
Based on my experience with Peugeots, my best (rough) guess for the vintage is 1965-72, or 1973-6 if the shifters are on the handlebar stem instead of the downtube. Check the oldroads archives for a couple of threads regarding German bikes, which are rare in the U.S., unlike their Austrian Steyr-Daimler-Puch cousins. If you ever want to work on the bottom bracket, I'll bet it is Swiss-threaded.