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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Motobecane ID posted by: Bob on 5/21/2001 at 4:34:21 PM
I recently purchased a Motobecane. Paint & decals are marginal but I took it to be a Gran Record based on its components. The frame has Nervex lugs and campy dropouts (no Reynolds stickers) with NR deraileurs, Nitto stem and bars, universal centerpull brakes, and TA Professional cranks with Atom pedals. Hubs are Normandy competition apparently re-spoked to 700c rims. The bike's original color was apparently a kind of silver-blue with black accents.
I saw another Gran Record, that was red and black and had a square head badge -- mine has a round badge. The person I bought it from said he did not think it was a Gran Record because they were all red & black (?) and this one was obviously grey.

Anyone know the story one these bikes? By the way, with new wheels and saddle it rides like a dream.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Motobecane ID posted by Bob Hufford on 5/21/2001 at 5:28:41 PM
Sounds like a Grand Record to me. The color was Silver and Black. BTW, I have a Yellow with Black lugs frame (original), though the Red/Black was the most common.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Motobecane ID posted by Ray on 5/22/2001 at 10:56:46 AM
I believe I have the same bike with the silver with black lugs. I bought it at a swap but the paint has what looks like a clear coat over the entire frame that has yellowed. I attempted to remove the clear coat to get at the base paint and it looks like I am having some success. The only concern I have is that when I remove some of the clear coat I cannot tell if I am down to the base paint or the frame as the color is very similar. Does anyone know if they were clear coated over the silver?

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Motobecane ID posted by Ken on 5/26/2001 at 10:47:48 PM
Bought a Gran Record in early mid-70's new. It was a beautiful gray/silver with black accents. Had Universal 51 brakes Campy Nuvo Record (thus the name) gears and TA crank...the frame was reynolds but not the chainstays or forks...sounds like the same bike...mine was stolen out of my house in NJ in 1975...When do I get it back!...sounds like the same bike....I remember it well and fondly.

AGE / VALUE:   trek 770 posted by: tim on 5/21/2001 at 12:31:28 PM
i recently bought a trek 770. i'm wondering if anyone has a an estimate of the age and value. it came with a pat. 84 super record group. hubs are phil wood with 6-speed regina cxs 13-28. reynolds 531c tubes. ideale 92 tan saddle. pink, 55 cm c-c. the parts have very little wear. the paint has some small nicks. thanks.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   trek 770 posted by Oscar on 5/21/2001 at 2:13:06 PM
If the 6-speed freewheel doesn't say "early 80's", then the pink paint does. Due to the Campy parts, you could look someone in the eye and ask $500 for it. Would you get it though????

Prediction: Older Treks could become collectable in the future as a pioneer of American-made quality road touring bikes.

AGE / VALUE:   eBay: NOS '78 Cinelli Speciale Corsa posted by: desmo on 5/21/2001 at 10:13:08 AM

Pretty amazing item, fun to see what the high bid ends up being.

   that's what I call a bicycle posted by John E on 5/21/2001 at 11:01:42 AM
Wow! Thanks for sharing.

AGE / VALUE:   Old Motobecane posted by: "Elvis" on 5/20/2001 at 8:18:58 PM
Hi again! I recently (yesterday) got two bikes. One is an old grey Campagnolo-equipped Treck Road Bike.
The other is an old Motobecane with skelatonized [cut-out] down tube shifters. I also got a third Motobecane for parts (The frame is broken). My question is: Should I use the shifters and derrailer from the parts frame or keep the
Motobecane as it is. The parts frame has a Suntour ?? and the Motobecane has Shimano 600. Which is better? I want the bike to last a while and don't want to keep the parts frame around unless it would be used for an upgrade.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Old Motobecane posted by Walter on 5/21/2001 at 9:33:01 AM
Shimano 600 is pretty solid stuff. I like SunTour and even their lower levels perform well but unless it's Superbe I'd go with the Shimano. Wouldn't hurt to ebay your left-overs

   SunTour posted by John E on 5/21/2001 at 10:49:14 AM
My vote is a bit different than Walter's. I would install the SunTours and keep the Shimano 600s as backups, since they do not require much storage space. I set up my Peugeot with a Suntour Cyclone rear and Shimano 600 front and I am very pleased with both.

   RE:SunTour posted by Jon on 5/22/2001 at 12:44:44 AM
I can't get over how seamlessly the cyclone operates on my
Peugeot 12 speed. It had a blown simplex rear (totally mashed cage, but
repairable main body) that I replaced with the ST cyclone.
The Peugeot has no lugs on the frame, not external lugs anyway.
Are these welded frames. It looks sharp to me as the lines are so clean without
all the lugging.

   RE:RE:SunTour posted by skip on 5/23/2001 at 5:52:35 PM
Hello Elvis -

I also am partial to Suntour, however, they made a WIDE range of components. Can you see a model name on any of it? The rear derailleur is the easiest to date.


AGE / VALUE:   Old TREK roadie posted by: "Elvis" on 5/20/2001 at 2:04:10 PM
I just found an old TREK road bike. It has Campagnolo components, six gears in back two in front and the shift levers are at the ends of the handlebars. The "Trek" is written on the seat tube in different lettering than today's Trek bikes and the badge on the head tube is brass.
any idea how old it is?

   Old TREK roadie posted by John E on 5/21/2001 at 10:53:15 AM
Nice find, Elvis. Can you tell which Campy (NR, etc.) components it has? The 6-speed freewheel implies late 1970s or early 1980s, and Campy rear derailleurs and cranks sometimes have somewhat cryptic date codes stamped into them. What is the brakeset? tubing type?

   RE:Old TREK roadie posted by skip on 5/23/2001 at 5:42:01 PM
Hello Elvis -
I can put an older limit on the frame, 1976 is when Trek started building frames. The early ones were Model 900 with "fastback" seat stays (Mine is light blue). The stays attached behind the seat tube binder bolt instead of attching more conventially to the side of the lug, as was done later. The Vertical "TREK" letters on the seat tube were not part of a graphic that wrapped around the seat tube, as was the case with later Treks. They were silver brazed.

MISC:   John Henry 10-speed bikes posted by: TONY on 5/20/2001 at 11:10:28 AM
I am looking for any information regarding a John Henry 10-speed bike. These were given out as a promo. at the Santa Anita Race Track (Oak Tree) years ago. I would appreciate any further information on these bikes if anyone out there has any.

AGE / VALUE:   conversion posted by: nick on 5/19/2001 at 9:01:58 PM
is it hard to replace a solid axle with a quick release axle? would the level of dificulty vary according to the situation?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   conversion posted by Gary on 5/19/2001 at 9:20:51 PM
the size of the axle is different. most hubs although roughly similar all used different types of sealing methods for dirt exclusion. if you get the correct brg diameter, the axle size and the dust excluder, all to match the new axle its just a simple swap, and a good excuse to clean and pack the hubs, But if you dont your asking for greif.
The object of a bicycle is not to just sell the bike, it is to make each part just slightly different so that the maker down the roads parts dont fit right, therefore making secondary parts a sure thing. subtle differences, such as a new 1/4" gap in the hubs dust excluder can allow the fine job to be ruined. good luck.

AGE / VALUE:    posted by: nick on 5/19/2001 at 9:01:58 PM
I'd keep the Belt saddle if it is in good shape and the Nitto stem (if it is the I-beam style that is the spitting image of the one that Rivendell is hawking on their website).-written by bob-=-=-=-=-hey bob are these parts collectible (it is the I beam you were talking about, is it worth anything)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:    posted by Bob Hufford on 5/21/2001 at 5:34:27 PM
I don't know if the Belt saddle is collectible, but it is nice. I ride one daily on my commuter. The I-beam stem would bring a decent price (compared to the run of the mill alloy stem from Japan) if you point the buyer to the Rivendell site. Best of Luck!

AGE / VALUE:   1899 Akron posted by: Tom on 5/19/2001 at 7:49:30 PM
Have a look at the bike on Ebay. Item #1146728550. All I can say is WOW. It should fetch a big buck.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   1899 Akron posted by Bob Hufford on 5/21/2001 at 5:38:07 PM
This one blows my skirt up (so to speak) ...


AGE / VALUE:   1899 Akron posted by: Tom on 5/19/2001 at 7:49:30 PM
Have a look at the bike on Ebay. Item #1146728550. All I can say is WOW. It should fetch a big buck.

AGE / VALUE:   Correct seat for 1963 Schwinn Varsity? posted by: Robert on 5/19/2001 at 2:49:16 PM
Can someone please tell me the "Correct" seat that came on a 1963 schwinn varsity? Any Ideas? Please post.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Correct seat for 1963 Schwinn Varsity? posted by Eric Amlie on 5/21/2001 at 9:08:02 AM
If it were a '64 it would be a Sprint. If it were a Continental or Sierra it would be a Lycett. Sorry I can't be more help but I would like to know the answer to this one myself.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Correct seat for 1963 Schwinn Varsity? posted by Larry Stone on 5/21/2001 at 2:08:11 PM
I believe that a 63 varsity came with a Schwinn saddle that had "schwinn Approved" embossing on both sides & three small holes on the top of saddle. The later schwinn saddles had the embossing on both sides but didn't have the 3 holes on top. Also the later saddles where shorter.

   Correct seat for 1963 Schwinn Varsity? posted by John E on 5/21/2001 at 5:16:12 PM
In which year did tensioned leather saddles give way to those awful padded things?

   RE:Correct seat for 1963 Schwinn Varsity? posted by sam on 5/21/2001 at 5:40:27 PM
Those awful padded things are called mattress saddles and I think they go all the way back to the beginning.They were offered on the Paramonts but those were stuffed with real horse hair and they were go saddles--but then they took out this then that and yes those are those awful (un)padded things.

   Schwinn Approved saddle posted by Eric Amlie on 5/22/2001 at 10:35:59 AM
So Larry, were these saddles tensioned leather? I have seen the later vinyl Schwinn Approved saddles but never a leather one. BTW, congratulations on your recent purchase of the '63 Varsity on Ebay. Hopefully it will have the correct saddle on it which will answer the question for us. The bike looks to have some non original parts on it though. The large spoke protector and possibly the stem look wrong for '63

   RE:Schwinn Approved saddle posted by Larry Stone on 5/23/2001 at 4:03:37 AM
Eric, Thanks for the Kudos on the 63! Its a very nice example. The paint & decals are near flawless, & I'm a sucker for Coppertone bikes. You're right! the back wheel will have to be replaced, Not sure about the stem yet? The bike will be detailed & made "Correct" Now! As for the Saddle, I just received a very nice picture of a 1963 varsity from a friend. I could be wrong about that saddle? Not sure yet! I will zoom & crop the pic to get a closer look. one thing is for sure, the saddle is leather. I'll keep you posted.

   '63 Varsity posted by John E on 5/23/2001 at 6:41:00 AM
I have always thought '63 was the Varsity's finest year. Schwinn had dumped the outdated Simplex gear, 4-speed freewheel, and 26" wheels, but had not yet adopted the heavy chain and spoke guards, suicide brake extensions, stem shifters, and matress saddle. I would guess that the Ideale-like tensioned leather saddle of the 1960 models carried through your year.

   RE:'63 Varsity posted by Larry Stone on 5/23/2001 at 8:06:16 AM
John, Thanks & Yes I think you're right. I really think the correct Saddle might be an Ideale. Now to find out which model Ideale?

   Ideale 80, perhaps? posted by John E on 5/23/2001 at 4:21:14 PM
Just a guess: The Ideale 80 was pretty popular in those days. One of my junior high school chums had a '61 Varsity with a cutaway-style leather saddle, but I strongly suspect that was an aftermarket swap.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   How to identify Raleigh Gran Prix wheels posted by: Mike Stone on 5/18/2001 at 8:03:24 PM
I am trying to rebuild a Raleigh Gran Prix that was once whole, but ended up in parts in my overcrowded bike garage.

The bike is just about whole. I now need to find the wheels that go with it. Naturally, I have a lot of wheels. I never counted, but my wife estimates that the amount is somewhere between too many and too damned many.

Anyway, how can I identify the rims for a Raleigh Gran Prix? Does anybody have any ideas? Were the hubs Raleigh with Raleigh stamped into it?


   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   How to identify Raleigh Gran Prix wheels posted by sam on 5/18/2001 at 10:03:04 PM
the rims should have sturmy-archer on them,the hubs might be sturmy-archer or atom or no name on them. also look for the S/A on the spoke protector of the rear wheel--sam

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   How to identify Raleigh Gran Prix wheels posted by kevin on 5/19/2001 at 4:57:53 PM
Hi Mike. How are ya? The 70's Raleigh Gran Prix I had came with high flange Normandy hubs and 27" Rigida steel wheels. Just my opinion, but I'd check about for a set of alloy 27" wheels. It'll lighten up the bike and I think they look a bit better also. Kevin

   VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:How to identify Raleigh Gran Prix wheels posted by Mike Stone on 5/19/2001 at 7:35:28 PM
Kevin, out of incredible coincidence, I just happened to slap on a pair of french aluminum (or maybe some kind of alloy) rims. The bike is impressively light even by today's standards.

Sadly, I found that these old aluminum rims are bent/warped way beyond fixing with a spoke wrench. I know that aluminum rims are a real nag to try to straighten, so I will go back and look for the correct rims. Maybe I have another set of aluminums or alloys around that I can use. It seems like it will be a beauty of a rider.

Any ideas how to lubricat the plastic encased Simplex front derailure?


Thanks for your advice.

   Simplex front derailleur lube posted by John E on 5/22/2001 at 3:58:36 PM
Hi Mike,
The easiest way to lube that infernal Simplex derailleur is: lay the bike on the left side, with the chain on the outer ring; apply very light oil to the shaft; let the oil soak down in between the case and the shaft. You can also rest the bike on the seat and handlebars and apply oil to the control pivot from underneath. Whatever you do, do not expect great shifting from that unit, although it can be made to perform passably, assuming that the case is not too worn.

AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN NEW WORLD posted by: Bill on 5/18/2001 at 1:50:36 PM
I did look on the hub for a date,was looking for 2 numbers
will look agian.the numbers came from the bottom bracket.
should i look more closely at the dropouts for the frame numbers

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN NEW WORLD posted by sam on 5/18/2001 at 10:10:27 PM
The 1938 or 39 schwinn worlds did not have the separate seat clamp , that came in late 40s or 1950---sam

AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN NEW WORLD posted by: Bill on 5/18/2001 at 1:30:43 PM
Thanks for the for the replys,i think if we have more info
it might place the timeframe.the bike has 26'rims that have
superior in script on them as does the leather seat.it has
fenders and chain guard caliper brakes with schwinn built
in script the head badge is small and says new world.it has
a rear rack and i think it was a touring bike.
the frame is not luged and may be fillet brazed.i know the
paramount superior and new world were hand made could this be
thanks again,

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN NEW WORLD posted by Art on 5/18/2001 at 2:38:50 PM
What does the script look like on the brakes? There should be some insciption on the S/A hub. What kind of handlebars, seat post?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN NEW WORLD posted by Bill on 5/18/2001 at 4:09:40 PM
The script looks like hand writing schwinn on one side built
on the other.the bars look like the ones on a raleigh DL.
fork has a lock on it.i will look more at the hub it is a 3
speed AW under the stuemey-archer logo is patent applied
for.seat post is steel.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN NEW WORLD posted by Bill Putnam on 5/21/2001 at 9:40:17 AM
For some help identifying the Schwinn Paramount, Superior,
and New World take a look at Mike Rother's article on Sheldon
Brown's site:
http://www.sheldonbrown.com/schwinn-braze.html Many of the
older Schwinn's are hand fillet brazed. There's a bit on
the Paramounts too at http://www.sheldonbrown.com/chicago_schwinns.html

My 1950 New World did not have the chrome moly tubing as the
Superior and Super Sport did, I'm not sure if the earlier
New World's did as Mike's article seems to indicate. An
easy check for whether it's a chrome moly bike is the tubing
diameter-the chrome moly bikes are larger (seat and down
tubes 29.5 mm).

AGE / VALUE:   Colnago Master / Arabesque posted by: Shawn Luther on 5/18/2001 at 10:24:38 AM
I am looking at buying a mid 80' colnago Master. However it has ornate chrome lugs which look very similar to an Arabesque. It has full Campy Super Record components. Is anyone familiar with these bikes. What should I expect to pay? Thanks

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Colnago Master / Arabesque posted by Walter on 5/19/2001 at 5:33:39 AM
I'm not the expert on this but somewhat knowledgable. You've got 2 of the best names going there: Colnago and Campy SR. I picked up a Campy SR group (used) with a wheelset for, I think, 300$ and consider that a good deal. A complete Colnago is different and if it's in worthy condition would probably fetch 900 maybe 1000$ on ebay. More is possible. If you can get it for less in a private transaction I'd consider it a good deal. If it's a "make an offer" type deal come in around 650$ and be prepared to go up. If he says OK you did good! Go over the bike carefully regardless but this is a bike I'd pay real money for. There's lots of deals out there in LWs b/c most feel that if it isn't titanium and STI or some such it isn't ridable anymore. That Colnago (and Campy SR) is strong proof to the contrary.

   Colnago Master / Arabesque posted by John E on 5/19/2001 at 11:11:21 AM
Even my Bianchi, which is a notch below the Colnago, is strong proof that one does not need titanium or STI.

   RE:Colnago Master / Arabesque posted by Walter on 5/19/2001 at 3:07:40 PM

My Basso which is Campy SR equipped rides as smooth as anything out there. As I've said before of the new innovations in LWs the one that really impresses me is the dual pivot brakes. To me that is a notable improvement. STI/Ergo where "trimming" a derailleur to match the chainline is difficult to impossible is not necessarily a huge advance at least not IMHO.