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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by: Tim W on 6/2/2003 at 8:45:50 PM
I have a few old Raleighs that are mid-level, and I am spending way too much time considering whether to restore them to original and keep them to meet my collecting habits, or to update them with straight bars and indexed shifters so that I can sell them to someone as classy commuter bikes.

One is a Lenton Sport with excellent original paint, and the other is a Super Course in pretty good original condition. I don't think either would get much via e-bay or as collectables. I like them, but what good two more nice bikes sitting original and restored in my garage? I have too many bikes to ride already.

Any thoughts or guidance?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Douglas on 6/2/2003 at 9:09:11 PM
Overhaul and convert the two bikes into commuters, sell them for a decent price and purchase that special tool that does the job you've been cobbing all this time. If there's nothing particularly precious about these bikes don't get too sentimental with them, instead,use these marginal bikes as a means to support your hobby in comfort and style.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by JONathan on 6/3/2003 at 2:13:35 AM
Tim, I don't know if this is any help, but it can't hurt to hear it. I have a Raleigh LTD-3 (1973) that has 3 sp. hub laced onto an alloy "Super Champion" (Wolber, obsolete) rim and a Sunshine hub laced to the same for the front wheel. Both are 700c-25 rims. I ahven't figured out how to deal with the BB and cottered cranks. My original plan was to convert a Raleigh "record" to a 3 sp., but this bike terminated that little exercise in futility. This bike is great for commuting, although I've only taken test rides of a few miles. The Lyotard pedals with straps are nice, too. This "type" of bike has a market waiting to happen, IMHO. Oh, the alloy handlebars are a good thing to incorporate.
You need the short reach brakes. With Blummels (plastic) fenders and a rack, you have a solid touring/commuter ride. The Blackburn rack can be adapted to the rear dropout fender eyes by using a piece of chrome steel tubing crimped and drilled to provide suitable extension for attachment to the rack support bracket. A leather touring saddle helps too. Those bikes can be made 21st century with a little $ and time...Good luck,...JONathan

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Ward Davis on 6/3/2003 at 2:40:42 AM
I would be interested in possibly purchasing your Lenton Sports.If interested,please contact me at wdavis54@aol.com


   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Dave on 6/3/2003 at 1:58:36 PM
I have a friend Mike that has a early '70's Super Course very nice bike he installed a cotterless Stronglight crankset and Zefal plastic fenders.I found a set of Blumel fenders for my '72 Gran Prix,and have the Raleigh script cranks,front & rear deraillers for it too,(rides great).Just my 2-c's.

    Update or Restore? posted by John E on 6/3/2003 at 2:42:54 PM
I think a Super Course would make a superb commuter, but I would definitely keep the drop bars, the Weinmann Vainqueur 999 centerpulls, and the friction shifters. I would install decent mid-grade aluminum cotterless cranks, KoolStop brake pads, and either an ultra-6 freewheel or a wider rear axle and a 7-speed.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Rob on 6/3/2003 at 4:28:51 PM
I would agree with John E.'s views...I have a couple of Super Courses...one about 1973 (my best guess)...I used it a fair bit last summer for good weather commuting...I've had it for a couple of years now...someone else had set it up with Vx Luxe GT der.; a 6-speed freewheel with very good Mavic rims and, I think, Shimano hubs; an SR 'Motobecane' scripted crank...which is pretty well worn out...still has the Vainquer 999 centerpulls, but I should take John's advice and put on better pads. It's a very nice ride...the other SC, about 1971, is close to original, I would guess, except for the derailleurs...has Campy hubs and Huret dt shifters; steel cottered crank...a future project, I guess...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Keith on 6/3/2003 at 5:03:54 PM
I have a Super Course that I set up with upright alloy handlebars and thumb shifters, similar to some bicycles I've seen in the Rivendell Reader. Great commuter and around town bike. The upright position helps you see better in trafic, IMO.

   handlebars posted by John E on 6/3/2003 at 7:36:57 PM
Upright handlebars make my hands tingle. I added extensions to the straight bars on my mountain bike, which improved, but did not cure, the situation. (With bent elbow at one's side, the anatomically neutral position for the forearm is with the palm pointing inward, rather than downward.) In contrast, I experience little or no discomfort when riding on drops, which provide 4 or 5 positions with palms facing inward. In traffic, I tend to hold the tops of the brake hoods, in what John Franklin considers the "normal" riding position.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Update or Restore? posted by Warren on 6/3/2003 at 7:44:56 PM
Super Courses must be the popular bike here. I just finished converting my 77 red SC MkII into a fixed gear runabout...very nice ride, great decals and paint. No Vainquers...it has Weinmann 610/750 combo. They set up well.

Is there a difference between the MKII and the earlier ones?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Keith on 6/3/2003 at 8:24:09 PM
By upright bars I mean north road style bars, like you'd find on a typical British 3-speed,not mountain bike straight or slightly swept bars, which I dislike. You palms actually do point inward upright bars -- about 45 degrees or so, and if you put your hands out in front of you as you read this, you'll see it's a pretty natural position. I've never experienced any discomfort with upright bars and find them comfortable although for most situations I still prefer drops.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Update or Restore? posted by JONathan on 6/3/2003 at 8:31:30 PM
I have the straight MTB style bars on the LTD. Thick grips and with gloves, I still get the tingles John E. mentioned. The only reason they are good is for horsing around off-road. We get a steady afternoon breeze that'll flaten you out sometimes. The dropbar allows for a very aerodynamic position to be maintained with ease. In addition, anything over 10 miles will make the dropbars appreciated even more. The trick is to get the right stem so your torso is positioned for maximum balance. For me, it's with the bars even with my forehead when in that aero-crouch position. You can get a fairly upright ride if the bars are the right distance from the seat. To get both optimized is a bit tricky, so I set-up for the aero-crouch since that's the best for the ride conditions. You are right about traffic observation being better with the straight bars or top of the drop-bar. I try to stay clear of traffic, even if it means a couple miles more.
Sound like the bikes you have are pretty decent. I'd keep 'em somewhere and let the subconscious work out the details of their disposition. It'll spring to mind, and be crystal soemday, when you aren't thinking (obsessing?) about it. Good luck...JONathan

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Tim W on 6/3/2003 at 8:46:46 PM
I appreciate all the responses. Something in my head told me that this posting would get lots of opinions returned! I am getting the sense that the Super Course is a favorite, and fun, frame for updating as a commuter.

I am a fan of 'mountain bike' bars for a city bike, but may opt for 'swept back' bars angled down as another comfortable option that would more suit this dignified bike.

As for the Lenton Sports, I will wait to see if Ward wants it as is.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Update or Restore? posted by Rob on 6/3/2003 at 8:53:15 PM
Ah...the debate on drops v. 'the others'...I prefer drops, and I think it's the variety of positions they offer. I never have any wrist or arm issues, though on an MTB sometimes my hands would get a bit tired...I, too, ride with my hands on or close to the hoods...though I sometimes wonder if the clamp band could break...I have had that happen when mounting brake levers... Also, I like to lean forward when I ride...I have slight lower back problem (as do lots of people), and I find that position best...as light in the saddle as possible. When riding an MTB, or in my car, it's not unusual for me to have some back discomfort; virtually never on one of my old lightweights...I think, too, one probably has to be fairly fit, good muscle tone around the waist, etc.,...

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Update or Restore? posted by steve on 6/3/2003 at 9:48:01 PM
There is a definite difference in the frame. I have two Super Courses, one from ca. 1973 with the fancy lugs and the other a 1975 Mk. II. Both are 20.5" size. The earlier frame has ca. 18" chainstays and a 22" top tube, while the Mk. II has shorter chainstays and a longer (22.5") top tube, and has a somewhat softer - but livelier - ride. The earlier bike has the ordinary round-oval-round chainstay, dimpled to clear the chainring. The Mk. II's chainstays are round to the cross member, then have a sharp taper over about 3/4" (looking something like the shoulder on a rifle cartridge), and then taper back to the dropouts. The appearance is suggestive of some track bikes.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Update or Restore? posted by Warren on 6/4/2003 at 12:55:04 PM
Thanks Steve. And with the retro white paint panels and decals it does look very track. I've never had a high opinion of 531 straight gauge...now that I've ridden it I'm fairly impressed. Of course the design and execution of the frame plays a big role in how it rides.

AGE / VALUE:   Ross Gran Tour posted by: Gralyn on 6/2/2003 at 8:00:07 PM
Old lightweights have become so rare in the thrift stores around here - but today, and to my amazement - I spotted one. It is a Ross Gran Tour. I already have one - mine is red - just like the one in the thrift store. This one may have been a 21" frame...mine is 23". Anyway....I wasn't going to buy it....because I already have one....but I expected to see a $25, or $35 price tag. More amazement!!! It was $75. I couldn't believe it! I can almost guarantee it will sit there a long time - unless they mark it down. Hmm...a double-whammie....old lightweights becoming rare...and being marked up as well! (Oh, I sold my Ross Gran Tour II for $40 to a guy who was having trouble finding a tall frame bike.....and that's after I rescued it from a thrift store and fixed it up)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross Gran Tour posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 8:40:15 PM
Gralyn, "shiny is more", I've discovered in the world of thrift store price guidelines. My best finds are always the quality bikes with a bit of a fade on the paint job and lots of dust and dried lube ( at least they got lube!). Yes, indeed, the Ross was a well built bike, just a tad hefty. I almost got one that was new looking, but price was a concern. I can't recall what it was priced at, but it was too high for me. As to the $75 price. That is more in line with their intrinsic value, IMHO. It might be a "probe" for market tolerance, too. And, then there is the ole "supply and demand" scenario to work into the equation. Without statistical data, but from lots of observations, I am seeing an increase in LW's in service. One ride is all it takes to make a believer.
I am coasting by the MTB's and new dept. store bikes, but then they are not serious riders. Last week I got dusted by a MTB on a straight-away. I had a generator going and was coming off a 20 mile workout ride to beat the darkness home, so I like to think that's the reason. Not that I care about being passed. I just like to cruise anyway. It's just that cruising on a well maintained vintage LW means you're moving along at a sustainable, good clip. BTW, I'm not counting the road-warriors who have a competetive seriousness, and I might add, a marked politeness and awareness while running hard that has my respect, even though there is indifference, maybe contempt, behind the actions. I say, the vintage LW's are within an order of magnitude of quality in construction, whereas the price is at least two orders of magnitude less. So, that may be why we're seeing $75 prices. A correction, if you will....They are out there. I just got one that I'll post about later.
Happy huntin'....JONathan

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Ross Gran Tour posted by Rob on 6/3/2003 at 5:48:43 PM
I agree...vintage lw's in good shape and nicely maintained are within an order of magnitude of the new ones in terms of utility and quality, if not appearance, but I would say maybe three or four orders of magnitude less in terms of price...of course, I'm thinking of a high end frame, dressed in a Record or Dura-ace gruppo, compared to a high end old bike. The only concession I seem to make to modernity is pedals...I love the modern pedals!!!

As to finding the interesting old lw's for zero or low $. I think a person has to consider the area they are in....demographics, economy, climate, etc., then put their mind back to the particular time period of interest...(my interests are from the late 1960's through to the early 1980's, though I find I'm shifting up closer to about 1990, now...), and think about what was going on at the time. In my area the economy was very good for most of the time period, and there was a strong interest in European and Japanese bikes, tilting more towards Japanese as time went on, and, of course, that's what I find in my bike searches...I would say this pattern is probabbly very similar, more or less, up and down the West Coast...and if a person thinks it through, they could probably figure out the patterns for other areas...I don't know for sure, but I would think Denver must be pretty good for old Euro/Japanese lw's, and So. Florida, Boston probably...and so it goes.

Just last night I was into a thrift...just looking...three candidates...an old Raleigh...too low end; a Nishiki...neat looking, color matched crank, Hi-Tensile tubing, $19.95CDN($14.50US)...it looked cute, but no...; and a tall Norco Magnum, likely made by Kamamura (sp?), (the company that made Nishiki)...Tange Mangaloy tubing, SunTour Mountech rear der. and an ARx front der., nice Dia Compe side pulls, nice Sugino crank (model, I forget)...$39.95CDN ($30US), but I walked away...I don't need any more at the moment, even for parts, but if it was cheaper..???...

FOR SALE:   Big Update posted by: VVVintage Vintage Bicycles, Inc. at OldRoads.com on 6/2/2003 at 7:59:22 PM
We've added more cycles and reduced some prices on other cycles.
Click on "Bicycles For Sale" at the top of this page for pictures and info.

Vin - VVVintage Vintage Bicycles, Inc.

AGE / VALUE:   help in dating posted by: Jane on 6/2/2003 at 2:32:00 PM
I 've found an older bike in my grandfather's basement. I 've found a serial number on the rear fork it reads
(?6?)2021352149, another serial number has been scratched in it reads FLO530268(?B?), the chain guard says SEARS, the seat says "schwinn approved" on a metal plate. The back wheel says "super komet" on the inside with the coding 161 36 F8SK. The handle bar grips say "hexgrip."

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   help in dating posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 4:09:50 PM
Hey, you have a great bike! The Komet was a German (Austrian?) hub, I recollect. That means it's probably a Styr-Daimler-Puch bike made in Austria for Sears in the '60's and maybe late '50's, I would guess. The Schwinn seat is probably not original. He probably wanted a more comfortable seat than what was on there.
The reason that I think they're great bicycles is based on experience riding and working on a couple that were my main rides. Firstly, the bike is well constructed where it counts; the frame. Secondly, it was lightweight for a 3 sp. bicycle. Running mine against the regular 10 speeds of the day (not the professional ones) it performed
better. The low gear was fine for someone in reasonable shape and you could stand on the pedals for steep hills, but they will slip occasionally if the hub is out of tune or worn, so take it into account. For commuting to school it could take a ton of abuse and loading the rack with 40 pounds was no problem. I'd trim it down for recreation rides.
That meant popping the fenders; rack; and the light/generator set (not so much to reduce weight, but to keep it from being wrecked). That configured, I could really rip. A faster bike than the "varsities" and other "lightweights". I would fix it up to ride. You have a good candidate for restoration to a solid commute/fun runner....JONathan

   even better news: ISO posted by John E on 6/2/2003 at 8:08:26 PM
I have just verified that the bottom bracket of my Capo is English/ISO, rather than Swiss, threaded. Since bicycle manufacturers have traditionally followed their respective countries' standards, your Steyr-built frame probably also uses readily-available ISO BB cups.

   Ah, so posted by Oscar on 6/3/2003 at 3:01:58 AM
John, did you get that fixed cup off yet?

   fixed cup posted by John E on 6/3/2003 at 11:10:09 PM
Yes I did, Oscar. Reverend Chuck of Bikeforums.net mentioned an industrial-strength fixed cup extractor, which CyclArt just happens to have, as well. When I brought the frame in yesterday for repainting, Jim was able to unscrew the fixed cup, using this tool and his post-mounted vise.

The 44-year-old factory original Agrati cups are in excellent condition, and the 30-year-old Nervar Star spindle is in decent shape.

MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by: J on 6/2/2003 at 5:54:56 AM

   RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 6:59:15 AM
You need tires for s-6 rims. The standard (EA3) 26x1 3/8 inch tires won't work as they are 7mm smaller, just enough to give you fits. Ask for the s-6 size. Good luck...JONathan
BTW, I just finished a "breeze" which has s-6 rims and the tires are Kenda brand. You might try the middleweight page for more makes of tires. The Kendas were $10 and are very good. One thing you have to watch is the tire bead seating properly on the rim. I pump up the tube a bit before fitting the second side of the bead over the rim. This helps the bead to seat properly. The problem is that you'll get a slight wheel "jop" if the bead is seated lower along part of the rim. You eyeball the molding ridge to make sure it's equal distant from the edge of the rim all the way around the wheel.

   RE:RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 7:04:48 AM
The word is; "hop". I blame the keyboard.

   RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by Wings on 6/2/2003 at 7:08:59 AM
I have never heard of Breeze Cruiser! Schwinn Cruisers will have S-2 stamped on the rim and they take a 26 inch baloon tire which is common. Cruisers have a cantilever frame, which is a curved top tube with two smaller tubes under it with both connected to the head (name plate part).

I have lots of Breeze bikes and they are "lightweights" (but heavy) and they do not have cruiser (cantilever) frames. They also use a 26x1 and 3/8 tire. This tire is totally different from all the other 26 x 1.5 or 26 x 1.75 ... or 26 x 2.1 tires!!!! You can find the 26 x 1 and 3/8 tire at some drug stores and usually at K-Mart or Wall Mart. A good bike store may also have them. Your only choice may be black as that is all I find now!

There is a 27 x 1 and 1/4 tire also and it fits many lightweights but would not be what you are after!

What did your old tire say for the size?
Or, check the rim and tell us what it says and we can help.

   RE:RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by Wings on 6/2/2003 at 7:17:11 AM
Wow, there were no response when I wrote the above -- we are all writing at the same time in different time zones I guess.

Regarding the need for a Schwinn S6 tire and the regular 26 x 1 and 3/8 being too tight --
It is best to have the S6 tire. However if one sprays the rim with polishing wax (light coat) on the side of the wheel where the stretch occurs in putting on the tire -- or spray the entire rim -- one can stretch the regular 1 and 3/8 tire to go on the rim. I usually have to inflate it to a higher pressure until it seats with a BANG ;) and then bring the pressure down. Yes, watch out for the low riding tire on the rim.

Interesting on some 26 inch mountain bike tires the problem is they are too loose and one has to watch out for the inner tube trying to be a baloon sticking out on the side -- nasty when that happens on a test ride.

Good luck!

   RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by David on 6/2/2003 at 10:37:10 AM
Check www.bikepartsusa.com They have several different so-called 26" tires for Schwinns. Be very sure that you're getting the right ones! See www.sheldonbrown.com/tire-sizing.html

   RE:RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by VVVintage Vintage Bicycles, Inc. at OldRoads.com on 6/2/2003 at 7:58:14 PM
We carry tires for your Schwinn on this page:


Vin - VVVintage Vintage Bicycles, Inc.

   re: schwinn brakes posted by Keith on 1/30/2004 at 7:33:58 PM
I recently purchased a vintage Schwinn breeze. I'm not sure of the year, I believe it is from the 60's. Anyways I'm having trouble assembling the brakes. Frankly, I have no idea what I'm doing. Can anyone help?

   RE:MISC: SCHWINN TIRES posted by Breezie on 7/4/2005 at 11:30:22 PM
I recommend gumwall tires - they are natural off-white (eraser) color on the sides... looks snazzy on my Black 1970 breeze... they didn't make whitewalls in that size, but gumwalls, yes...

take a look...


   RE:RE:MISC:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by ronda on 6/9/2006 at 5:38:37 PM
I just purchased a schwinn breeze for 35.00 I hope I did good on it. It it in great shape. w original paint . the seat is rip free with a big s on it. What is the year and where is it? it is maroon and white girls bike .

AGE / VALUE:   SCHWINN TIRES posted by: J on 6/2/2003 at 5:54:56 AM

AGE / VALUE:   Technium, Raleigh posted by: Elvis on 6/2/2003 at 3:16:23 AM
Just picked this up. It looks like a road bike except the rims are a little wider and it's got cantilevers and a flat mountainbike style handlebar. Is this a funky mountainbike with 27 [or 700c?] rims, or a hybrid, or what? I have heard of Technium bikes before and believe that the main triangle tubes are bonded aluminum. Any idea about how this is made and if it is safe to ride such a bike long term used? Or where this bike sat in the Raleigh line, or when it might have been made?
The frame is white, marked RALEIGH in black and USA in aqua blue. Across the top tube it says "technium" in stylized letters that feel raised to the touch. Red and silver heron headbadge with Raleigh usa logo. I am considering fitting it with drop bars for road riding, after the fashion of some old cyclecross/touring bikes I've seen, unless it's sturdy enough to use as a mountainbike. Any ideas?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Technium, Raleigh posted by Max M. on 6/2/2003 at 3:40:12 AM
Techniums were the product of Raleigh USA. They were a hybrid design. Most were some form of Alcoa aluminum in the main tubes with cro-mo rear stays or triangle. They are plenty solid. I have sold two Technium MTB but have kept my Technium Team frame made from Reynolds 753 (or 853.) The one you have sounds like the City bike or Hybrid. It should hold up very well for anything you can dish out. It may be a little on the heavy side but still lots of fun.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Technium, Raleigh posted by Dave on 6/2/2003 at 3:02:54 PM
I have a 1999 Raleigh Super Course made the same way as your Technium.Outfitted with a Aluminum fork the bike w/o luggage weighs 20.5 lbs,by far the lightest one I own.I weigh around 220 lbs and carry a fair bit of stuff in the huge rear bag I use and the bike holds up well.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Technium, Raleigh posted by JONathan on 6/3/2003 at 1:18:43 AM
Is it the one with the seat-stays bolted onto the seat lug? Short on brazing staff? I wonder why that feature would be used in the construction. I saw one for $85 at a thrift store. It didn't stay very long either....JONathan

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Technium, Raleigh posted by Elvis on 6/3/2003 at 2:05:51 AM
Thanx, all. It seems solid but not being used to that sort of technology i had to ask...! Now I can ride in good conscience without worrying about my health insurence!

AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by: JOHN on 6/2/2003 at 1:59:21 AM
Just saved a Motobecane Nomade from the trash. Cottered cranks, steel wheels, Huret stem shifters. According to Sheldon Brown this is a bottom end boom bike not worth spending any money on unless someone has a sentimental attchment. It doesn't need anything except tires, seat, and a few hours of cleaning/repacking. Do you guys think it's worth the effort? John

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Wings on 6/2/2003 at 7:21:31 AM
Yes, I like Motos!!!
I have one in blue that I will fix up this week! I then try to find them a home. Motos are good bikes!

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 7:25:40 AM
I have a motobecane "nobly", which is a notch below the "nomade" in the line-up. It's got those "sneeze and they break" simplex shifters on the stem and a simplex plastic rear derailer. Steel Rigida "ripple" rims and sidepull brakes that feel under-powered with 220 pounds working against them. They must have been tested with no rider in place! However, the frame is very solid and the paint and fenders are very good. It rides better than I expected from observing the components, which include the cheapest pedals I've ever seen on an adult bicycle. If I put alloy wheels, Weinmann cp 610's, cotterless cranks and decent pedals it could be a nice commuter or fun rider. My wife wants her Raleigh "sports" (1965) or I'd fix it up. For some reason (intelligence?) she wants the 3 sp. internal geared system. So the "nobly" is just another bike that's part of the herd. I popped the generator and lights for my Schwinn "traveler" as I need lights sometimes. The price for the "nobly" was less than just a generator set woyuld cost ($15). So they through the bike in for free. Good luck.
BTW, I'd hang onto the "nomade" as I suspect there may be nostalgia buffs who may want them...and they are solid bikes. The collectors' market is a changing thing, too. Who knows? I figure if I can fit a bike out of the weather, I'll get it.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Tom on 6/2/2003 at 12:38:49 PM
I concur, Motobecane were a nice bike. The question as to whether the Nobly was above or below the Nomade is an interesting one. Basically, they were the bike, the Nomade was the Sport version (drop bars, narrow saddle) while the Nobly was the Touring version (flat bars, mattress saddle, fenders, rack and kickstand). On all the examples I've seen, the remaining componentry was identical (provided we examine models from the same year). Motobecane ads listed the Nomade higher than the Nobly, but the extra touring accessories pushed the cost of the Nobly about $5.00 higher than the Nomade, which should make the Nobly the higher model. Hmmmm.

FYI, Motobecane ads from the 70's also list a Riveria model below the Nomade and Nobly, but I'm not familiar with it. Is anybody familiar with it? Maybe it's a 3 speed, coaster or junior bike?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 4:31:57 PM
Hi, Tom. I concur with what you described. The "nobly" that's a failed candidate for the Raleigh 3 sp. replacement effort on my part is about par with the "nomade" from its general characteristics. I saw one "nomade" with a bent left seat-stay that was a tight double-triangle. The red paint was coming off, but it looked OK due to it's inherent solid construction. The Lawee Co. introduced what look like (are?) Moto's in the S. Calif. region. The "nobly" was, if I recollect the ad correctly, a slight drop off in quality from the "nomade", but that was, as you pointed out, probably a component issue more than a frame quality issue.
They jump up from the "nomade" to some very quality machines. I judge Motobecane, as all other makes, by what they're lower end bikes are like. If they have good low-end (see previous posts for definitions) then you know they take pride in the product. Personally, I really dig the Moto's. Mine is a "coffee" color, I call it. Interesting that people who see it like the paint work, trim and decals. It's worth keeping....Thanks, JONathan

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Tom on 6/2/2003 at 5:42:03 PM
JONothan, as you suggest, I suspect the Lawlee bikes in Southern Califirnia are Motobecanes with customer decals. Lawlee Inc., of Long Beach CA, was the Motobecane distributor during the 70's bike boom, so they would have had the the clout to get this done. It wouldn't surprise me if these frames were shipped to Lawlee, for assembly in the USA, to avoid the high bike boom tariffs.

FYI, I just found the answer to my own question, The Riveria was a folding bicycle with Sturmey-Archer 3 speed.

While the top end Motobecanes are very nice, I find their mid-range models (Grand Touring & Mirage) the most interesting. Motobecane was one of the first, if not the first, European manufacturer to spec the the superior shifting Suntour V-series of slant parallelogram derailleurs. That was a gutsy move for the mid 70's. I bet a lot of people who pick these bikes up think that the derailleurs are replacements and try to "re-store" them with a Huret Allvit or Simplex Prestige.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Frank on 11/1/2003 at 9:23:35 PM
Gents, I just stumbled across a Motobecane Grand Touring in the trash in Okinawa Japan. I live on a Marine Corps Base and found it behind a furniture store of all places. Right away I could tell this was not a Wal Mart special. A quick search of Motobecane bicycles shows my first impression was correct. However, I cannot find a value of an average condition Grand Touring.

What would you guess on a ball park value? What am I sitting on?


   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Dave on 3/6/2004 at 3:03:22 PM
My son was given a 1979 motobecane 50v mobylette. It does not have a spark plug, and I am looking for info on the proper size and type, and help would be appriciated.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Jeremy on 4/9/2004 at 1:28:17 AM
My dad bought a motobecane mirage bicycle for $25 and we were wondering if there was any value to a bicycle like this were not sure how old it is this is our first dealing with a bicycle of this kind. Thanks

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Bryant on 7/26/2004 at 6:13:00 PM
I have a silver lilac Le Champion motobecane race bicycle. It is equipped with mostly Campinolo equipment ie. front and rear derailers, shift levers, front and rear hubs, and I think the seat posts. It has installed old LOOK style clip on pedals but I do have the original pedals with the toe clips. It also has soe up style wheels and rims. I have the special campi tools to remove the front chain rings and crank arms and some other assorted special tools. It was purchased brand new in 1976 by my father and I have had it since about 1993. It rides like a dream and is a great climbing bike. My father pay $576 for this bike nearly 30 years ago and I was curious as to how much this bicycle would be worth now.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Bryant on 7/26/2004 at 6:20:19 PM
I have a silver lilac Le Champion motobecane race bicycle. It is equipped with mostly Campinolo equipment ie. front and rear derailers, shift levers, front and rear hubs, and I think the seat posts. It has installed old LOOK style clip on pedals but I do have the original pedals with the toe clips. It also has soe up style wheels and rims. I have the special campi tools to remove the front chain rings and crank arms and some other assorted special tools. It was purchased brand new in 1976 by my father and I have had it since about 1993. It rides like a dream and is a great climbing bike. My father pay $576 for this bike nearly 30 years ago and I was curious as to how much this bicycle would be worth now.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by bruce on 4/20/2005 at 5:58:11 PM
i bought two brand new motobecane bicycles in 1976 one for myself and one for my lovely wife. Hers has the slant bar. I know they have the suntour v series derailers and are all original parts and pieces. Very low riding hours on them. any idea of value?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by Warren on 1/18/2006 at 9:57:44 PM
I have a beautiful Moto Nobly - the color is a blue-grey - everything is original. The bike was my fathers - I got it when he passed away - I was thinking about getting rid of it, but I think I'll keep it due to the great condition and general cool factor. Thank you for the info on this site.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Motobecane posted by martin biggs on 11/21/2006 at 8:06:59 AM
just purchased a used nomade off e bay , looks a nice bike unridden by myself trying to trace age of bike any suggestions of how based in uk

AGE / VALUE:   Tell me about my old Raleigh Carlton posted by: Lance Renault on 6/1/2003 at 9:49:40 PM
I'm not sure if this is a roadster, but I have a Raleigh Carlton 15 speed that I bought new in 1967 or 68. The metal plate on the head tube says Raleigh - Nottingham, but Carlton is the only name on the tubes. It's a beautiful red frame with wide black bands on the tubes in which "Carlton" is written in white. "GB" is molded into the casting on the handlebar stem. The handlbar is embossed with GB on one side and and an outline of the British Isles on the other side. The top cross tube says "Carlton Catalina." On the rear fork beside the wheel slot is stamped W8773 which I assume is a serial number. A sticker on seat tube indicates 531 alloy. The original derailleur was a Simplex and the original wheels were steel. The tube fittings are all chrome. It's a classy bike, or was in it's day.

Please tell me what I have in terms of age and value.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Tell me about my old Raleigh Carlton posted by Warren on 6/2/2003 at 4:29:26 PM
As far as age goes...you said you bought it in 67. I think the Catalina was a step up from a SuperCourse...does the 531 read horizontal (straight guage tubes) or angled (double butted)? In the first case it's still a nice bike...the second indicated it is a top tier bike and is more valuable depending on condition and components. Simplex and steel wheels indicates that it a mid grade bike and is not worth big dough. Not many mass produced bikes are really. Make it a rider...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Tell me about my old Raleigh Carlton posted by JONathan on 6/3/2003 at 1:38:44 AM
Lance, there's a bike shop nearby that caters to a major university and the store has used bikes cabled outside with varyuing prices. The 3 sp. Ral. "sports" that I looked over, last year, was $75. Now, that genre is going for about 50% more! So, I'd say yours would bring at least $150 in safe-ride condition, nothing extra. If you figure tires and tubes and brake shoes and cables, you have about $40 overhead. The guy probably gets the bikes pretty cheap, so the profit may be OK. They seem to move, too. They are pricing to move 'em. I'd keep yours if you can hang 'em somewhere out of the way. You may be surprised at what the price does in a couple years. Just my 2 c's....JONathan

AGE / VALUE:   puch racer model mistral a posted by: derek smith on 6/1/2003 at 11:30:00 AM
could anyone plese assist me in dating the above bike it originally had huret deraillieurs.thnkyo i also own an english viking with nervex lugs and mafac racer brakes but modern shimano gearing also a gitane fitted with campagnolo group set

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   puch racer model mistral a posted by lumpen@gtcinternet.com on 6/2/2003 at 3:17:25 PM
Try looking at the rims.If they are the Rigida brand they had date codes inside a triangle on them.I was at a place called Working Bikes last Saturday,they recieve all the metal recyclers bicycle pickups; they rebuild them to either sell for shipping money,($10 per bike)or send down to 3rd World countries so the people there have transportation.What a great collection of Vintage LW's!I saw a ugly Green Mercier with the same foil decals as on mine.If it weren't for the bent fork steerer,(wish I had Jonathan's bronze sculpture artist relative)I wouldv'e bought it.This bike's rims had a 1972 datecode,my Mercier was a fair bit older than I thought.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   puch racer model mistral a posted by JONathan on 6/3/2003 at 1:55:34 AM
Lumpen, guess what? A Japanese forkset and bearings will work right into the headset. The races are standard! It's about the only thing that is standard on that bike. I had a standby Centurion forkset in case the fix turned out to be unsatisfactory. I would have gotten that one....JONathan
Yeah, the metal work is a subunit of technical expertise. Fortunately, metal is metal, so little knowledge of bicycles is required to apply successful treatment of problems with the frame, forks and stays. These vintage LW's are always fixable, and it's a question of how much time do you want to spend on any given fix.
We're working on a few ideas. That's the fun part....Cheers, JONathan

MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by: Edward in Vancouver on 6/1/2003 at 4:47:46 AM
Found a pair of wheels outside the dumpster of a bike store, 700 36 spk "Ambrosia" rims model "Depos". The front hub is a Suzue 3L LPF with a clip covering the oil port. The rear is Suzue 4C LPF with a cheap "Dicta brand" 16 tooth freewheel. Both rims in very good shape, albeit with galvanized strait guage spokes and very tattered Panaracer clinchers. Both wheels are missing Q/R and skewers, and the rear has all the spokes loosened up, as if the owner wanted to remove the hub, but then decided to ditch the whole thing.
Are these wheels worth the effort to fix up? I've never ridden a fixed gear,--YET... And now my brain is ticking like a clock with these wheels sitting in my garge. Any suggestions out there?

   RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by Warren on 6/1/2003 at 2:18:20 PM
Hi Edward...are you saying that the rear hub is a true track hub or is it a freewheel hub with a cog cinched on with a bottom bracket lockring? If it is the first, then tighten up the wheel and put it in a 70's road frame with horizontal drops and try it. If it is a freewheel hub then it may require a little more fussing about to make it work re: spacing the hub and dishing the wheel, putting locktite on both the lockring and the cog. One other issue is the cog itself. Pull the cog off and check the hub threads...cheap cogs can bugger up the threads...DAMHIK. Buy a good quality steel track cog once (per size) and forget about it.

Check out Sheldon's fixed gear pages, of course. You're in Vancouver so you'e going to need a small gear ( 42 X 16 teeth = 70"?) and a really good front brake. I just converted a Raleigh Super Course last week and it's a great way to ride. An old Sports frame makes a good conversion as well. Do it.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by Edward in Vancouver on 6/1/2003 at 3:53:19 PM
I gotta get a look at a true fixed hub, I guess. Then again I don't want to saunter into La Biciciletta and ask alot of stupid questions that mark me as a true Fred...

The hub in question has a aprox. 20m mm spacer on the left side and what appears to be a BMX type screwed on freewheel on the right. Looks like I'll need a tool with four splines to remove the freewheel. I've no experience with Suzue, but something tells me they have sealed bearings? Or or these too old? Anywhere I can get info on Suzue hubs?

Thanks for the advice Warren, Just might start off with a Sports frame if I can get this project off the ground. Not that I'm a cheap person or anything, but in order to keep domestic peace in the house I've sworn to no new bike stuff --for a while...

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by JONathan on 6/1/2003 at 6:54:53 PM
Edward, Suzue makes tough hubs for a reasonable cost...that's why the BMX riders like 'em. I have a set of wheels with Suzue hubs and heavy alloy Araya rims. I'm using them on a Mercier 10 spd. (early '70's) upgrade from the steel that were original. I've seen that 4-prong remover tool at Parks Tool, I think. What I do is make my own from an impact socket and a dremel cut-off wheel and a file. It's labor intensive, but in 45 minutes you can have one turned out...about 1/2 the time it takes to run around looking for one in a LBS. Welcome to the world of vintage LW restoration.
WEAR Goggles!!!...JONathan

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by Tom Ligon on 6/2/2003 at 12:18:28 AM
A normal freewheel hub has a simple set of threads onto which the freewheel screws. This is the same type of threads a track (fixed-gear) hub uses, but the fixed gear hub has a second, slightly smaller, reverse-threaded section added on. That second section of threads allows you to use a locking ring, that prevents the cog from un-screwing.

You can use the regular freewheel hub for fixed gear ... just put some locktite on the cog before installing it. However, it is best not to depend on it to hold if you apply any really huge backpedaling forces. Equip the bike with both front and rear brakes.

Sounds like a nice wheelset for experimenting with the world of singlespeed and fixed gear at very low cost.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by Warren on 6/2/2003 at 12:38:54 AM
Sorry Ed...I missed the part about it being a single freewheel...ask the Van couriers where they service single speeds.

In addition to Toms advice I think you should also lock the cog on with a bottom bracket lockring...with the loctite of course. The more threads the merrier. And if you really like it, you can step up to a nice track hubset next time...you really do want to backpedal. And just wait until you trackstand at every intersection...you'll be the envy of the roadster crowd :•)

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by Edward in Vancouver on 6/2/2003 at 3:51:34 AM
Thanks for all the advice. I've got the rear wheel in the trueing stand now, but my mind is wandering over another four feet where a beat up Raleigh sports stands, one-time surrogate mother for my Raleigh Superbe project, hmmm...

Ya know I've been riding on bikes since I was 6 but never rode a track or fixie, and just outside Vancouver is a Velodrome which claims to be the only fully enclosed one in North America. (fact or fiction?) At 38 years old I've never bothered experimenting with naracotics or bungee cord jumping, but this sounds like something worth experimenting.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Potential fixed wheels? posted by Mike in Saint John, New Brunswick on 6/5/2003 at 10:06:04 PM
In moncton we have a velodrome which I have seen but not ridden on (it is NOT enclosed) but seeing it and sheldons articles inspired me to cobble together a 'track' bike of my own from a Shields Nishiki frame and a couple of 27" wheels and a welded solid BMX freewheel. Loctite and front brake BUT after reading the above advice I will put on a back brake also.
In Vancouver, there must be a store that sells track cogs, unlike us in the small cities. Mike

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by: John E on 5/31/2003 at 10:09:21 PM
OK gang, it's my turn to get stuck. In preparation for frame refinishing, I am trying to remove the factory-original English-threaded Agrati fixed cup from the BB shell of my 1959 Capo. (I had previously assumed Swiss threading, but a 1.37x24 Sugino adjustable cup threads very easily and smoothly all the way into the left side of the BB shell, so the BB threading is definitely ISO. Presumably, this is good news for all of you owners of other Austrian bikes.)

Since the oval cutout in my Sugino BB wrench is slightly too small for this cup, I have tried my bench vise and Sheldon Brown's 5/8" bolt trick, but it won't budge, despite liberal application of penetrating oil. This is only the second fixed cup I have been unable to remove from a frame; the first was a mid 1970s Motobecane, on which I had the additional challenge of not knowing whether to turn it clockwise (Swiss) or anticlockwise (French). I would like to preserve the cup, if possible, because it is original and in surprisingly good condition. However, since it is ISO, it can be replaced. Suggestions invited!

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by dafydd on 6/1/2003 at 12:08:36 AM
Do the cups match? Highly unlikely, but maybe only the fixed cup was tapped to Italian... Aside from that, a little heat to the shell...

      removal of fixed BB cup posted by John E on 6/1/2003 at 1:51:21 AM
Very interesting theory, but both cups are Agrati, as were the cranks and BB of my 1961 Capo. I did briefly try turning it anticlockwise, with the same result. (That was how I discovered that my 1980 Peugeot has Swiss, rather than French, threads. Frustrated, I thought I would try to tighten it slightly, then jerk it loose, but it just kept turning clockwise.)

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by JONathan on 6/1/2003 at 1:59:06 AM
Glad to offer assistance, John E. I would get a "cat" bolt (high test, 6 pt. or more) in the 5/8 size with enough thread to accept a double nut on the outboard side. Now you have to really get the second nut tightened down onto the first one (the one that you usually only need). You have a double-nut lock on the outside of the cup, such that pressure applied to the fisrt (read inner) nut ONLY will apply a lot of torque in addition to the opposite inner torque you are going to get with a 1/2 breaker-bar. I recommend not using your socket wrench unless it's a Craftsman (they replace broken ones). Now, the trick is to simultaneously apply the forces. I haven't tried this on a BB, but it has got to either (1) remove the cup or (2) remove the bottom bracket (not good).
Heat is OK, but I wouldn't do it as I'm afraid of taking some temper out. A little heat may expand the BB a tad to pop any corrosion, which I doubt there is unless you see rust around the inside of the BB. The double pull balances the lateral compression forces you get with a single side rotation. Good luck....JONathan
BTW, this all hinges on the correct threading direction. A little tapping with a plastic hammer can aid the process...kind of like a tame impact.

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by JONathan on 6/1/2003 at 2:03:07 AM
Unless you are good with your feet, you'll need an assistant to do the tapping. Good luck...JONathan

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by Chuck Schmidt on 6/1/2003 at 2:32:20 AM
John, It sure wouldn't hurt a thing if you just went ahead and refinished the frame with the fixed cup in place. (Masking of course, before painting.)

Remember it is not called a "fixed cup" for nuthin'...

Chuck Schmidt

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by sam on 6/1/2003 at 3:40:59 AM
One of the chaps from England said Raleigh fixed cups were put in at the factory with the frame hot.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by Warren on 6/1/2003 at 4:53:36 AM
Maybe... but I've been able to remove several Raleigh BB's with no extra effort.

John...leaving it is place is a fine idea but if you need to remove it (for satisfaction) then you need a bigger tool. I use a high quality 18 inch adjustable wrench with a threaded bolt/wooden blocks/washers/nuts jig to hold it in place.

Give me a big enough lever and I'll move the world...someone said that once.

If you want to check the threads, here's an idea that I haven't tried but I think it is valid. Take a piece of putty (chewing gum, wax, etc) and reach right through the adjustable side of the BB and take an imprint of any threads extending in past the fixed cup. Take a second imprint of the adjustable side threads for reference and compare. I think this should be discernable. If they are different then the fixed cup is ISO and therefore reverse thread etc. Should give you an answer assuming the BB is tapped for a few extra threads.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   removal of fixed BB cup posted by JONathan on 6/1/2003 at 5:50:28 AM
Sam, thrading the fixed cup into a "hot" frame was probably a manufacturing expedient (didn't want to wait) rather than a way to fix the cup tighter. The logic isn't there. Unless it is a tapered thread like some pipe fittings (NPT) or unless the diameter of the cup is larger than the agjustable cup the het wouldn't seat the cup any tighter. However, it is a method of keeping a pin or bolt nubbed in tight, where (1) the machine gets hot or (2) where loosening is not just an inconvenience for an operator. Heating the BB with the cup in place would make it easier to remove, I think, due to the denser cup steel having a lower thermal expansion than the less hardened BB. However, the weakening of the steel is a potential problem if temperature is not controlled. I could see "hot spots" forming. This is just my 2c's. If the vise couldn't facilitate the removal, I don't see where an adjustable wrench can do it. I've used a steam-fitters adjustable wrench (monkey wrench) that removed tough BB fixed cups, but it chipped a jaw on a slip...you only have about 3mm of bite on the cup edge. I think John E. has an anomaly, like something unusual. Speculation: Due the the good condition of a cup on a 40+ yr. BP bike, the chances are that it may not be original. The replacement may have been fastened with brazing or loctite-type glue. In which case, some heat may be necessary to free it up. Let us know what happens. Very interesting, indeed....JONathan

     removal of fixed BB cup posted by John E on 6/3/2003 at 2:49:07 PM
With his professional grade cup extractor and floor-mounted vise, Jim Cunningham was able to remove the fixed cup.

I'll post some pictures of the finished frame, but we are patterning the color and decal scheme of my 1959 Capo after those of this 1961:


AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by: Lonnie Goodrich on 5/31/2003 at 3:18:26 AM
Does anyone know anything about the Rampar bicycles? Model number JH73459 high carbon frame, ten speed, suntour. How old is it? Is it worth restoring?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by David on 5/31/2003 at 1:03:57 PM
I think the Rampar bikes are Asian-built but sold through Raleigh dealers; generally lower end. You might have a good rider, but I doubt it's worth spending much money to "restore."

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by soundwave on 5/2/2004 at 3:01:20 AM
i own a rampar 10 speed with a high carbon frame. i bought the whole complete for 20 dollars at a yard sale. the bike runs great, someone had told me the bikes went for a good amout of money back in the 80s and were kinda popular. all the components and frame are japan built, most of the components are suntour exept for rims wich are araya rims and brakes which are dia tect brakes. i can honestly say the bike is worth restoring, ive got nothing to complain about my rampar.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by dan on 3/18/2006 at 12:07:13 AM
I think the bike is worth it. I have one and it is a 27 inch frame and to replace the bike it would have to be custom built and would cost around about 1000 dollars

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by dan on 3/18/2006 at 12:08:09 AM
I think the bike is worth it. I have one and it is a 27 inch frame and to replace the bike it would have to be custom built and would cost around about 1000 dollars mine has avocet hubs which are very good

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by Dave on 8/15/2006 at 12:19:42 AM
I bought a Rampar in great condition this weekend at a church yard sale for $5. It's a model 1027. Replaced the seat since it was like sitting on a brick. I'm happy.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by Dave on 8/15/2006 at 12:21:03 AM
I bought a Rampar in great condition this weekend at a church yard sale for $5. It's a model 1027. Replaced the seat since it was like sitting on a brick. I'm happy.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Rampar (Raleigh) posted by Dave on 8/15/2006 at 12:21:24 AM
I bought a Rampar in great condition this weekend at a church yard sale for $5. It's a model 1027. Replaced the seat since it was like sitting on a brick. I'm happy.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Soma Sport posted by: Bryant on 5/30/2003 at 8:37:19 PM
Picked up an interesting bike yesterday, a Soma Sport. Serial number and components tell me it is a 1977. Very nice bike, Frame is "KCL lightweight seamless tubing" (read as carbon steel). Half chromed fork, chain and seat stays, Forged Kuwahara dropouts, integral rear derailleur hanger, SunTour VGT rear der, Comp V front der, Power shift DT shifters, Dia-Compe Centerpulls and levers(no suicide levers), Araya alloy QR wheels w/shimano hubs.
Not much written about the Soma brand except for Sheldon Brown's one-liner "Short lived company with decent quality bikes." It is a very nice bike, I wonder why they went out of business? Anyone out there have a Soma? Do you know where the Sport fits in their line-up? Any ideas on what they cost back in the day?

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Soma Sport posted by Tom on 5/31/2003 at 3:05:09 AM
Bryant, the April 1979 issue of Bicycling has a comparison test that includes the Soma Sport. The price at that time was $235. I've also seen tests a lower priced 3 speed and a lower priced ten speed.

Soma were a heavy advertiser in Bicycling in 1978. It appears they bought full colour ads on the inside back page, for the entire year's run. The ad featured a Merckx look-alike, with hairy legs, in a Soma T-shirt, racing a couple thoroughbred race horses. The bike he's riding
is probably their top of the line. It has really nice side-pull brakes that appear to be Suntour Surperbe and chrome seat stays. Unfortunaterly, the ad only shows the bike above the hubs and cranks. A smaller pic, in the bottom right corner shows a family of four on their Somas. The two adult bikes are different lightweight models, as I can just make out that one had side-pull brakes and the other had centre-pull brakes. The boy is on a Junior lightweight and the girl is on a Stinray styled bicycle.

So it appears that Soma had at least 3 adult ten speed models and at least one was higher and lower in the range than the Sport. It's not much, but it's a start. Hopefully, some other contributors can flush out additional info.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Soma Sport posted by Bryant on 5/31/2003 at 10:37:16 AM
Thanks Tom, I guess I'll spend this rainy Saturday at the library looking up old issues of Bicycling.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Soma Sport posted by Hoop Filip on 9/4/2004 at 4:02:55 PM

Im lucking from a STRINGRAY 20" in silver color, send to Belgium ? Where can i find some ?
Please help me !
thx Filip Hoop

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Soma Sport posted by Gary on 4/26/2006 at 9:56:44 PM
Soma! Yeah!! someone else has a soma! I have a black soma bike! was going to check what the year was when I get home today... but not exactly sure how going to try. I want to know how good this bike was in its time! it rides real Nice now!! came with all suntour stuff and a Lexar post... I picked it up with no wheels out of a dumpster near my work! its a sexy bike and I want to know more about it then. Sheldon Brown's one-liner "Short lived company with decent quality bikes." as well..... HAHA'!

Good FIND bryant!
Let me know if you find out anything special about what we are ridding.


   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS: Soma Sport posted by J B on 8/15/2006 at 4:12:56 AM

I bought this Soma Sport 10 speed in I think, in 1980. Put 67 miles on it according to my Huret Odometer, which I bought at the same time. Then put it in the basement. 26 years later, I have just cleaned out all my belongings from my parents home, where I was born and raised .

You may ask why would anyone buy a new 10 speed put 67 miles on it and promptly abandon it. Well...... I was a real "bike head" at one time. My first real bike was a Schwinn Supper Sport. I use to ride the heck out of this thing for a few years. Then it got stolen right out of our house. With insurance money I replaced it with a Schwinn La Tour. Another bike I would ride the heck out of for a few more years. Then this one was stolen right out of my Uncle's furniture store where I worked. It was stolen by a real low life employee. I couldn't prove it but it didn't make much difference anyway. I got some insurance money so off again I go to do what seems to come naturally for me. I go out looking for another bike. The 80's was the decade of the Japanese! Our local bike shop had a room full of Japanese bikes. Thought this Soma was real nice. I bought it.

Even though I got this new bike, things were changing in my life. Girls, cars, school, playing guitar in bands. and yes settling down and doing the family type stuff all happened! That's the short version, I'm sure you know what I mean.

Anyhow, now I have this Soma Sport and I got the "bike head" thing going again. The gumwalls were all gummed out of the tires and the bike seemed kind of crusty. I put new tires on it and gave it a test drive. Everything works like it did when I parked it.

I attached a picture of the bike pretty much before doing any cleaning and with the original tires (All Gummed Out)

I would like to find out everything I can about this bike. I haven't been able to find my owners manual or a sales receipt as of yet. This would for sure confirm the year. Maybe I can get a copy of an owners manual from someone or a copy of some advertising for this model. This would be cool! Looking at the serial number it seems to indicate 1980. (Soma Sport Serial Number: 80 09 53773) I googled and googled and can't find much at all about the brand. The only thing I found was http://www.somafab.com/. I think these are the same guys but they don't make bikes any longer. Just frames and have no history listed about the Co.

If anyone knows anything about the brand or model please let me know. I would appreciate any information you could provide.

I have been taken the thing a part, polishing, cleaning and am confident this bike will be restored like new again. Real Soon!!!
For more info on the Soma Sport:
Thanks for your input,


   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Soma Sport posted by J B on 9/18/2006 at 6:12:23 PM
Pictures of My Soma Sport Bikes!


MISC:   Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by: JONathan on 5/30/2003 at 8:10:51 PM
Schwinn Super Sport (1972) weighs in at 33# according to my spring fish scale. I couldn't believe a chro-mo frame would tip off at that weight. I checked the scale with a 4Kg weight (8.8 #) and it read 9 pounds. So lets say it's 32 pounds. Does that seem like a lot? There are no stickers that say what steel was used, but it is the fillet-brazed version. The yellow color is pretty blinding to look at in the sun. The wheels are alloy Weinmanns, Dia-Compe cp brakes, locomotive one-piece crank; big ole seat ("cyclo-??"); cheap tires that are not originals; Japanese steel pedals (serviceable type) "S" stem and alloy bars; big, cablecar-brake shift levers and a steel kickstand.
I guess 32 pounds is about right. Seems like it isn't much less than you'd have with a fighting-trim varsity. I know the later Super Sports were cheapened a bit, but would the steel have been mild steel? Thanks for any specs....JONathan

   RE:MISC:   Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by Dave on 5/30/2003 at 8:53:51 PM
Jonathan, My '64 Varsity has new alloy wheels,(w/700X25-rear & 700X2-front) tires,and is fitted with the Ashtabula 1-piece crank,steel chainrings,steel kickstand,steel chrome fenders and steel handlebars,cromoly fork,(alloy stem & rear Schwinn Approved rack).It weighs in at about 29 pounds,so I would say it's somewhat heavy.When I finish the '84 World Sport I'll put it on the scale to see.Other Varsities I've had with the flat solid original fork all were about 35 pounds,so it's a tweener.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by JONathan on 5/31/2003 at 1:41:08 AM
Dave, the Super Sport is listed at 33# in Schwinn Data Book site. My scaleis probably accurate; the 4Kg barbell weight was coated with rust, so it may have been 0.1 Kg more. I have the 24 inch frame. The "World Sport" has a long history. I have a "World" (Giant) Schwinn that is heavy. It's the "High Tensile Steel" tubes, which is just a goofy name for mild steel.
It's a 1984 model. It's paint is in fine shape and all the systems work great. It's a beater by how it rides. I was using last summer to help someone move and I needed something to leave there for running errands and to ride the bike path along the American River, Ca. The Jedediha Smith Memeorial Bike Trail is awesome. It runs for 26 miles along the river...no cars. except where there are boat access roads. Lots of club rides. I just needed something to ride that I could leave up there and not worry about it. Saved me having to haul a bike in my truck every weekend. I think with alloy wheels it would be OK. THe "Traveler" from the same period is far superior in ride characteristics. The 4130 and Sugino cranks with SunTour "ARx" der. is very high quality. The Dia-Compe cp's can lock it up with 220# payload. I am impressed.Good luck on yours...JONathan
BTW, I am not clear what the frame steel is on the "World Sport".
Joe, I got to your pics. Nice bike. I have a '77 Le Tour II (just checked) that has a crank set very similar if not identical to yours. I agree, it's likely a Le Tour (family).

   Correction; spelling & data posted by JONathan on 5/31/2003 at 1:51:58 AM
That's; JEDEDIAH. The trail is 32 miles! If you want a great ride...that's it! I've ridden the trail for years and each time it's a unique experience. One time I rafted down with my bike strapped to the raft. Loaded the bike at the end point and biked back with the raft strapped to the rack. Great Salmon and steelhead fishing, too. Cheers, JONathan

   RE: Super Sport steel posted by Eric Amlie on 5/31/2003 at 3:27:50 AM
I'm pretty sure that all the older(sixties/seventies) fillet brazed Super Sports were made with 4130 chrome-moly. That one piece, steel, Ashtabula crankset certainly added a few pounds of unnecessary weight to the bike.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by DannyJoe on 5/31/2003 at 4:25:17 PM
Just weighed in on my '73 Super Sport w/24 inch frame, 33# and some change, it was done on comodeculator scale, me alone then me holding the "Sport". What weight is given for a similar sized Varsity? I own a '74 Varsity that is stashed in an outbuilding or I would put it on the comodeculator, the Super Sport stay's inside the house.

      Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by John E on 5/31/2003 at 10:09:07 PM
A stock Varsity weighs about 39 lbs, with some variation according to frame size. Early models, without the big chrome spoke protector and chain guard, may be about 1/2 lb lighter.

   RE:   Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by Dave on 6/2/2003 at 2:54:50 PM
My friend Ed had a 23" frame Huffy that weighed in @38 lbs,it lasted 25 years before the seat tube/bottom bracket shell seperated and he said a 25' frame Varsity he had was 41 lbs.Jonathan,that trail sounds nice,next time I get to Ca. I'll have to try it.BTW,this '84 Schwinn will be outfitted with the Shimano "Megarange" rear derailler and freewheel with a 34 tooth "bailout" gear,I plan to ride the "Hilly Hundred" in Bloomington,IN this Fall on this bike.

   RE:RE:   Schwinn Super Sport (1972) posted by JONathan on 6/2/2003 at 9:09:12 PM
Hi, Dave. Sure hope you get a chance to swing over to the JS Trail. I would start at about where Cal-Expo horse racing track and State Fair site is located. At Discovery Park you have the start with lots of parking and pic-nic grounds, boat launches, etc. The American R. and Sacramento R. meet at that point. Take a swim suit to get doused along the trail, but DON'T swim, the water is treacherous with snags and the current is faster than it looks, and it's very, very cold. The path is a slight rise going east and then fast on the return.
I can't imagine a "varsity" tube coming loose from the BB. To me, it's an inconceivable event to happen while riding. To me, they're incredible. 25 years on a Huffy shows they could make bikes....Happy rides, JONathan

   RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn world sport posted by laura on 3/21/2005 at 12:14:04 AM
i have a schwinn 28 inch chrome moly wold sport letters are all still very good can you tell me where to find the date on it i know it was made in chicago any information would help thanks laura

   RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn world sport posted by laura on 3/21/2005 at 12:15:43 AM
i have a schwinn 28 inch chrome moly world sport letters are all still very good. can you tell me where to find the date on it? i know it was made in chicago any information would help thanks. laura

   RE:RE:MISC:   Schwinn world sport posted by laura on 3/21/2005 at 12:15:43 AM
i have a schwinn 28 inch chrome moly world sport letters are all still very good. can you tell me where to find the date on it? i know it was made in chicago any information would help thanks. laura