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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

FOR SALE:   Lightweights for sale posted by: GaryMain on 8/10/2003 at 7:23:06 PM
73 Schwinn World Voyageur
I have seen a non original repaint with suntour sell for 275. i watched a 21 in orange original paint start on ebay at 650 reserve, and it nosaled 3 times till he put it on at no reserve, and someone stole it . this is the Opaque Blue, with 23 in frame. the bike is a notorious paint flaker, as they painted right over a chrome frame with little prep and no primer. has all origjnal components except it had a spring comfort seat on it, which i removed. has a Coda racing seat now, on the original alloy stem. only parts i would replace on the bike total is the rear brake cable stop, and seat bolt, which for some odd reason attracted rust. i have not cleaned this bike at all, is some extremely mild peppering on one rear stay, but most of it wiped off with my finger while photographing it. i do not want to ship this bike anywhere, but if i have to i will, as modern bikes come in very small boxes, which tall frame schwinns do not fit. am suspecting you know the history and rarity of this machine, and its the jewel of my lightweight Schwinn collection. i am wanting 300 for the bike. am open to some negotiation. i also have a CroMoly 72 Chicago Schwinn Super Sport in opaque blue, tall frame. its all original. And i have a herd of other Schwinn continentals, old and newer models, some giant made some panasonic. Bring a truck and 500$ and take them all, voyageur included. thats every drop bar schwinn in the shop, 19 in all, and the varsities and the rest of the lightweights excluding the speedsters and midweights 550$, looks like about 10 more or so, maybe more.

AGE / VALUE:   Allergo chainring posted by: sam on 8/10/2003 at 6:46:27 PM
"not my auction,etc" Very cool Allergo chainring on ebay http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2187206008&category=420

      Allergo chainring posted by John E on 8/11/2003 at 5:21:37 PM
Thanks for posting! I have always admired Allegro's frames and paint jobs.

MISC:   Shimano Selecta posted by: Bryant on 8/10/2003 at 12:52:32 AM
God, I love this hobby. You never know when you will hit something new. I picked up a Moto Nomade Sprint and am tearing it down for rebuild. The new thing is the cranks and bottom bracket. The cranks are Shimano Selecta and look like an early Shimano Octalink system. The cranks have an integrated crank remover where the crank bolt is. it is a 6mm hex nut that pushes out/pulls in to a splined bottom bracket. The crank rings are seperate from the crank itself, you take off the crank arm, and then slide of the crankrings. The bottom bracket has a lock nut and adjustable cone much like a hub. Of course none of the cone wrenches I have fit it. Anyone have the history/date on this and know what size cone wrench I need to remove the bottom bracket??

   RE:MISC:   Shimano Selecta posted by Gralyn on 8/10/2003 at 2:33:02 PM
I have one, too.
Except that mine...the left crank arm was replaced at some point....but it's got the Shimano Selectra.

   RE:MISC:   Shimano Selecta posted by Ric Sona on 8/10/2003 at 4:09:07 PM
The Selectra is 1970s [1974-1978] when they were first introduced.

   RE:MISC:   Shimano Selecta posted by Tom on 8/11/2003 at 1:15:04 AM
The Selecta was introduced in 1979. Refer to the Shimano Selecta B-1 thread from April 22 of this year for a complete discussion. For interested parties, I have a small stock of new, original Selecta parts. Unfortunately, I am posting this response from a remote PC (2000 km from home)and cannot answer your cone size query at this time.

   RE:MISC:   Motobecane Sprint Nomade posted by troy on 8/12/2003 at 6:12:59 AM
I have recently been given a motobecane sprint nomade as well and am very curious about its age. It has a Dia-Compe brake levers, Sugino AT triple crank, Suntour Honor derailer and Shimano hubs, front derailer, and altus shifters. Would I be correct in assuming that this was an entry level Motobecane? What might it's original value have been? Age most importantly. Thanks for any ideas.

AGE / VALUE:   Old vintage Olmo - check it out posted by: Gralyn on 8/10/2003 at 12:38:14 AM
I stumbled across this old Olmo on e-bay. This is the kind of bike I would like to find in someone's garage...for a song...


   Old vintage Olmo - check it out posted by John E on 8/10/2003 at 1:55:14 AM
Thanks for posting, Gralyn! Given the pushrod Gran Sport front derailleur, I would have expected to see a Gran Sport rear, as well; the Record rear derailleur may be newer than the 1960 frame. The Magistroni (or Agrati) half-step cottered steel crank was very common on late 1950s and early 1960s high-end Italian bikes, before the very new and very expensive Campag. aluminum cotterless cranks came into vogue. I always enjoy seeing near-original bikes of the same vintage as my Capo.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Old vintage Olmo - check it out posted by Demarest on 8/11/2003 at 4:44:17 AM
some Bike! My Gosh!

just for that era, once found a Gitane, yellow, as aged looking as can be; may have said Tour De France, you know, that Anquetil, I am pretty sure, won some of his TdFs on Gitanes.

   Old vintage Olmo - rear derailleur posted by John E on 8/11/2003 at 2:51:29 PM
According to "The Dancing Chain," my suspicions are correct, i.e., one of the former owners, needing a lower bottom gear, replaced the original racing freewheel (13-23?) with a 14-28, and had to replace the original Gran Sport derailleur (26T limit) with the somewhat wider-range NR.

AGE / VALUE:   I know it's rare but... posted by: Walter on 8/9/2003 at 9:56:11 PM
Finally found the ASC hub auction I asked about before. Actually it's been relisted and is a current auction.


Desireable? Yes!
Rare? Yes and in NOS condition exceedingly so.

But.....Look at the price, esp. the "Buy it Now."

Obviously, this is a very knowledgable seller who knows what he's got but I get the impression even he will be surprised if it sells.

    I know it's rare but... posted by John E on 8/10/2003 at 1:40:25 AM
Yes, Jim knows his classic components. Having never ridden an ACS hub, I asked him how a gear change feels, and he replied, "As you move the lever, you have to let it shift YOU!"

A NOS ACS has to be the Holy Grail of epicyclic bicycle gears.

   RE: I know it's rare but... posted by Chris on 8/10/2003 at 7:12:52 PM
It's in the bank vault deposit box. In the original box, all asleep, N.O.S. alloy too. Yea, been there, done that. I'll never use it. That original N.O.S. trigger was too dificult to find. Just was bought up and it did not cause a nervous breakdown or anything. The trigger was hell to find and I was a stubborn idiot and insisted on that too being N.O.S.
I locked it up and have'nt looked at it since.
The Holy Grail is ever changing.
Im on to other Grails now.
The bike shop fantasy is to find a wooden shelf wall full of these hubs.
These too, have been chucked out into landfil.
The waste is hard to imagine.

   mechanical engineering challenge posted by John E on 8/11/2003 at 2:55:32 PM
I still sometimes think about figuring out how to convert a Nexus hub into a multispeed fixed gear. I also wonder whether anyone has ever successfully followed Sheldon Brown's instructions on how to convert a conventional wide-range 3-speed S/A hub into a 2-speed fixed gear.

MISC:   My First fixed gear posted by: Bryant on 8/9/2003 at 8:56:51 PM
Fixed up a Panasonic Sport into a fixed gear, and just finished my first ride on it. Took some getting used to, especially when I unknowingly tried to coast. Whoops!! After that had a great ride. Just kept pedaling. When I went up hill, pedaled harder, downhill, pedaled faster, can't be easier than that. Couple of things though, want to try a smaller rear gear (using a 42X18 now) then need to use Loctite on it. Also have to find a better saddle. This can definitely be habit forming.

   RE:MISC:   My First fixed gear posted by Gralyn on 8/9/2003 at 11:14:35 PM
Congratulations! Welcome to the world of fixed-gear riding! It will probably take more than one time to really get used to riding fixed. It took me several times. That first time, though - is really tricky.
I run a lot of 52 X 18. I set up a 40 X 14 last night - but I haven't had an opportunity to try it out yet.

FOR SALE:   For sale - Trek 720 Touring Frame, 25.5" posted by: Skip Echert on 8/9/2003 at 2:07:07 AM
Hello all you tall guys and girls -
For Sale - Trek 720 touring frame, 25.5", 1982, on Ebay.com. Perhaps the best production touring frame ever made. Item #3621632885
Close relation to seller.

AGE / VALUE:   Selle Saddle posted by: Charlz on 8/8/2003 at 11:09:42 PM
Anyone have information on how old a Selle Ecco 105 Leather Saddle is? I tried several web sites and have found Selle saddles but not the Ecco model?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Selle Saddle posted by Don on 8/9/2003 at 4:39:48 PM
I have this saddle on a 1981 Centurion Pro Tour 15 touring bike. It was on the bike when I got it 3 years ago but doubtful it was original equipment as the other 2 examples of this model I have seen both had Avocet touring saddles. Hope this helps.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Selle Saddle posted by Ken on 8/10/2003 at 6:20:16 PM
"Selle" is Italian for saddle.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   '74 Sekine - 10 spd. posted by: Chris on 8/8/2003 at 2:48:04 PM
I purchased this from the Sports Shop I worked in during High School. 1974(?) Sekine, 10 speed, Pearl White with Diamond (fake) in "CS" front crest. All original, near mint condition. Ser. # B 1 7478. Does anyone know anything about this brand or it's value? There doesn't seem to be much info out there! Appreciate any help! Thanx, Chris

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   '74 Sekine - 10 spd. posted by Randy on 8/8/2003 at 6:01:00 PM
Sounds like you have an entry level Sekine. I have built up a couple of these bikes and passed them on to other people. There is nothing special about the bike, other than the fact that the Sekine Cycles company focused on building quality bicycles. If you would like to know a bit more about these bicycles, feel free to visit my humble web site. The site targets all bicycles built in Canada. The address is http://www.geocities.com/randyjawa/index.html

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   '74 Sekine - 10 spd. posted by JONathan on 8/8/2003 at 6:18:13 PM
A comprehensive discussion of "Sekine" also exists at "count=22" at this board. Simply type in "22" at the end of the address string for location. It will take you to May, 28, 2003 posting. Therin, you'll find a great discourse on the subject. Very interesting stuff.
You can always search the database for the boards. I found this may site through trial and error, as I had remembered the approximate time period during which the Sekines were discussed. You came to the right place! Cheers, JONathan

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   NOS Claud Butler revisited posted by: Walter on 8/8/2003 at 12:39:05 AM
I pulled this thread back up to the top so I could ask if any of you saw the auction end on the S-A fixed gear hub? Forgot to bookmark it. I can always check finished auctions in a day or 2 but am looking for instant gratification. :)

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   NOS Claud Butler revisited posted by David on 8/8/2003 at 2:27:38 AM
The Claud Butler frame went for $1850. I
m not sure about the ASC.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   27" wheels - 1 1/4, 1 1/8, 1, etc. posted by: Gralyn on 8/7/2003 at 7:54:00 PM
OK, not talking about the 700C's here....but the old 27" wheels. 99% of what I have seen are 27 X 1 1/4. I have only one bike with 1 1/8 rims. I had 2 bikes with 1 1/8's but I sold one....and just after selling it - I realized ...and thought...that I should have swapped the wheels before I sold it. I think they made 1" and smaller rims for 27" wheels. I never see them. Only very very rarely do I see even a 1 1/8.

Are there any sources for 1 1/8 and smaller wheels out there? What bikes would have had 1"?

      27-inch wheels posted by John E on 8/7/2003 at 10:08:05 PM
The bead diameter, and therefore the required rim diameter, is 630mm for all "27-inch" tyres. Rims of any given width can safely accommodate a range of tyre widths. Refer to Sheldon Brown's table of tyre/rim width compatibilities to see whether you can put 1" tyres on your rims. Every 27" rim I have ever owned was compatible with both 1-1/8" and 1-1/4" tyres, and all but the very widest were fine with 1" tyres.

   RE:   27-inch wheels posted by Kevin K on 8/7/2003 at 11:26:14 PM
Hi Guys. I mounted up a pair of 27 x 7/8 115 lb. tires on a set of 27 x 1 1/8 wheels. Held great. I've never seen another set of 7/8 tires since those either. Wish I'd kept them. Kevin K

   RE:RE:   27-inch wheels posted by Mark Cady on 8/8/2003 at 1:45:06 AM
For 27 x 7/8 tires, you might check out Harris Cyclery:




   RE:RE:RE:   27-inch wheels posted by Gralyn on 8/8/2003 at 3:18:07 AM
No, The rims - not tires. I'm talking about the rims. I have 1 1/4 rims with 1 1/8 tires and vice-versa. I never see any rims other than 1 1/4 - I'm just wondering if there are any out there....like 1" rims?

   RE:RE:RE:RE:   27-inch wheels posted by JONathan on 8/8/2003 at 5:51:38 AM
Gralyn, I know they exist, because I have a few, I think. They are smaller across than 1 1/4 inches. Very deep section. I believe they are Belgian. In fact, I think they are all European origins. I'll check my collection. &/8 inch on a 1 1/4 inch rim? You are braver than me. I guess I'm a nervous guy. The rims that I have are from the 60's. Seems that funny looks are what happens when you ask about 27 inch wheels. Speaking of hard to find stuff. I found a set of alloy 3 sp. Raleigh wheels for a "sports" (60's) that my wife rides. What a big difference it made in the performance. Are you looking for a "sub" 1/1/4" 27 or was it an academic question? I'm curious to see what I got in the "spider farm" shed. I'll get back, tomorrow, I hope! JONathan

   RE:RE:RE:RE:   27-inch wheels posted by Joe on 8/8/2003 at 7:26:42 AM
Rigida 1320 27" alloys were always nice with a 1" tire, their even narrow enough for a 7/8". They listed them as a 27 x 1 1/4" but they measure only 19.5 mm wide overall and 12.5 mm inside. I run these on one bike with a set of 1" skinwalls.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   27 posted by Ron on 8/8/2003 at 11:46:04 AM
I have two sets of rims that are marked as 27x1 1/4. The Weinmanns are much narrower than the Arayas, about 19mm vs. 25mm. Different brands of tires measure differently, too. I have some Nashbar 27x1 1/4 tires that are narrower than the Vittoria 27x1 1/8! Sheldon Brown had an article about honesty in tire sizing.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:   27-inch wheels posted by Kevin K on 8/8/2003 at 12:17:48 PM
Hi. Thanks for the heads up on te 7/8" tires. I was given a dozen AVOCET Fas Grip 27 x 1 1/8 tires this spring. 105 psi. Pretty nice. Thanks again, Kevin

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   27 posted by Gralyn on 8/8/2003 at 2:15:12 PM
I think I'll compare the different rims I have....all identified as 1 1/4. I'll compare the Weinmann's, Araya's, and Rigida's. I have a set of Rigida's with 1 1/8 tires, and I have a set of Araya's with 1 1/8 tires. Conversely, I have a set of 1 1/8 rims with 1 1/4 tires (I have a set of 1 1/8's to go on them - I just haven't got around to it yet).
The narrower rims sizes must have been very rare - or on very high-end bikes - because I just never see them....only very occasionally - a 1 1/8 rim. Now, the 700C rims - especially the newer one's (last 10 - 15 yrs) come in narrower sizes.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   27 posted by Tom on 8/11/2003 at 12:58:38 AM
All the major manufacturers produced 27"/630mm rims compatible with 7/8" & 1" tires. All this confusion over rim vs tire sizes is but one more reason for the ISO/ETRTO sizing standard. A 13-630 rim (13mm between inside of flanges & 630 bead seat diameter) is compatible for tire widths of 19mm to 26mm, which would include 7/8" & 1". Popular rims available in this size includued the Araya 20A, Matrix Titan, Mavic Mod E, Maviv Mod E2, Mavic G40, Rigida 13-20. Sun Mistral.

These narrow, 630mm bead seat diameter rims and tires (27")were overshadowed by the introduction of narrow, clincher rims and tires with a 622mm bead seat seat diameter(700C). Having the same bead seat diameter as a tubular tire, the 622mm clincher rims allowed the frame manufacturers to produce one optimum frame that would accommodate both clincher and tubular wheels. Previously, the manufacturer would have to produce frames with slightly different dimensions for 630mm clinchers and 622mm tubulars, or produce one frame of non-optimum design and use brakes with different length arms to accommodate the two wheel sizes. The cost savings were readily evident to manufacturers and the narrow, 622mm wheels were almost immediately and universally accepted. The corresponding narrow, 630mm wheels were overlooked for most new bikes, and found use primarily as replacement wheels for older bikes.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Capo posted by: John E on 8/7/2003 at 7:38:11 PM
Here is a sneak picture at my Capo frameset with its new CyclArt paint job (scroll down the page, well past my earlier post about Jacob Cowgill's Capo). I still need to attach the front brake (original Weinmann 999 Vainqueur 610, of course), the front derailleur, the chain (SRAM) and all of the cables.


Who knows? With Arnold Schwartzenegger officially running for Governor of California, Austrian bikes may be in style.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Capo posted by Mike on 8/8/2003 at 12:46:40 AM

The Capo looks great! CyclArt have done a beautiful job. What lugs does your bike have - are they Nervex? Am looking forward to seeing more photos.


   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Capo posted by JONathan on 8/8/2003 at 6:18:24 AM
WOW! That's what it's all about. Probably better than original paint, too. You did it justice. I admire your endeavor to do it right. The paint work on a bike really sets the tone for the overall appeal. A big step beyond my world of restoration, your Capo serves as an inspiration for me to try harder to do it right. That site is great, too. Congratulations...JONathan

   1959 Capo "Modell Campagnolo" posted by John E on 8/8/2003 at 3:53:21 PM
I went way over my original budget on this paint job, but I really like the results, including the downtube decals and the white head tube panels. Harald Cap (Capo Computerrad, www.capo.at) has told me that his father, a highly ranked 1920s Austrian bicycle racer named Otto Cap (hence, "Cap, O." = CAPO), had the lugwork custom-made in his own factory, but I do not know whether they modified Nervex bits or started from scratch.

This is my birthday present to me and to the late Tullio Campagnolo. I'll try to get a closeup photo of the 1930s script head badge (see the link to Jacob Cowgill's Capo in my post at the top of the same webpage), which one can barely make out in the picture I posted.

AGE / VALUE:   Gumwalls gum up wheels posted by: john on 8/7/2003 at 4:42:21 PM
I frequently come across lightweights with gumwall tires that have deteriorated (melted?) into a gooey substance that sticks to the wheels and takes hours to clean off. I usually end up scrapping and using a dremel tool with wire brush to get this crap off, but what a job. I'm afraid to heat the wheels (warping). Is there any known solvent for this stuff? I've tried lacquer thinner, enamel reducer, denatured alcohol, mineral spirits, kitchen cleaners, Fantastic, etc., etc. Thanks. john

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Gumwalls gum up wheels posted by Oscar on 8/7/2003 at 6:58:03 PM
I believe that goo is the gum itself. You see a similar thing happening to gum brake levers. Removing the goo would do any good as the tire itself is deteriorating.

Looks ugly, don't it?

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Gumwalls gum up wheels posted by Gralyn on 8/7/2003 at 7:53:50 PM
But where's a good place to buy these tires? I can pick up some el-cheapos' at the X-mart (27") - but for halfway decent lightweights - I would like to find some decent gumwall tires at a decent price.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Gumwalls gum up wheels posted by Randy on 8/8/2003 at 6:07:23 PM
Try WD-40 penetrating oil. I've used it a number of times to deal with similar problems. It might work for you.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Gumwalls gum up wheels posted by Bryant on 8/9/2003 at 8:55:32 PM
I had the same problem with the gum brake hoods melting onto the brake calipers. I ended up using Goo Gone from the people who brought you Shoe Goo. It still took some scrubbing, but it worked for me.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Gumwalls gum up wheels posted by Ken on 8/10/2003 at 6:28:24 PM
Nashbar was just clearancing (is that a verb?) 27" Raleigh gumwalls. Also the bottom-end Continental Sport 1000 are a very nice tire for the $.

AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh-USA Technium (Olympian) Aluminum tubes posted by: JONathan on 8/7/2003 at 7:03:03 AM
Picked up my very first Aluminum framed bike, yesterday. After some minor adjustment in it's attitude, I busted out on the path. Passed everyone and never looked back! This bike screams. Just to make sure it wasn't just my extra helping of Cajun, I tried it again on a twilight ride, today. Same ol, same ol. What gives? This bike is referred to as a "entry-level" or the more benign; "low-end" in all that I read. However, I decided for myself that this bike is as good as they came.
The date is somewhere around mid to late '80's, as it has bio-pace chainrings (big one is round, fortunately), Shimano 300 group. Concealed brake lines that emerge out the rear of the top-tube. Downtube shifters are bossed. The clip pedals (spuds?) are a nuisance for regular sneakers, but I could let that slide, for now. Turns on a dime, gives change. Sweet handling bike. The bike came with a few giblets; Avocet computer; Blackburn underseat pouch; Zefal 4X pump and two water cages! The stickers purport "thermal bonded Al tubes", etc. I presume it is made in the USA, based on the decal. Not much trail in the forks which have very narrow crown. The rear wheel is ABT alloy Weinmann. I think "ABT" is Advanced Brake Tracking, whatever that means. Stops real good. The front wheel is a bit cheaper, but decent enough. I put Continental 120 psi tire on the rear, no problems there. The front has a 105 psi. Based on two lightening rides, I'd have to rate this bike as a "9 1/2". I stopped for a look at a "10"...
Pinarello, but it had the tubes already bent, so the rider wouldn't have to do it himself. Can't match that. Anybody know about this model of a Raleigh? Price was $32.50 at my faithful charity thrift. Forget Goodwill and Sal. Army...JONathan
BTW, part of my enthusiasm may be the result of a weekend pushing a brutish MTB with full packs! Ah, the beauty of a LW.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh-USA Technium (Olympian) Aluminum tubes posted by JONathan on 8/7/2003 at 8:10:21 AM
I took another look at the frame. The Sticker has "6061 tubing" listed. I think that is Aluminum, and it probably isn;t melted beer cans, either.
There is a very small decal that has "Olympian" on it, located on the toptube. That sounds a bit hoakie, but maybe it's not an "entry level" afterall.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh-USA Technium (Olympian) Aluminum tubes posted by Gralyn on 8/7/2003 at 11:52:39 AM
I recently sold one of these Technium Aluminum 6061 Tubing bikes. It was just a tad bit too tall for me - so I let it go. I still have another - just like the one I sold - except that it's in a little rougher condition (more chipped paint and scratches, etc.). I currently have it set-up as a fixed-gear. It makes for a very light fixed-gear bike. Mine sounds much as you describe - the brake cable routing inside the top tube, the 6061 tubing, the fork, etc.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh-USA Technium (Olympian) Aluminum tubes posted by Tom on 8/7/2003 at 1:29:33 PM
JONathan, the Technium Olympian was circa 1990-1992. It was definitely from the LOWER end of the Raleigh line-up though I wouldn't call it LOW END, as MSR was $375-$425, depending on the year.

Regarding the performance, there are a couple of relevant factors. First and most important is your reference for comparison. As you stated, lugging a pack laden MTB does not make for a good comparison. You also ride a lot of 70s LWs and they just can't compare, given the compliant, low pressure tires. You've given the Olympian quite a performance edge with those light weight wheels and high pressure tires, but it will also be a much harsher ride. If I recall corrctly, you also have a Fuji Team? Try riding these back to back for a more valid comparison, though the Olympian should still have a slight edge.

Secondly, there is the New Bike Syndrome (a.k.a. NBS). Whenever you try a new bike there's almost always an adrenaline rush. On top of that you push it harder, to see what you/it can do. I know very few people who don't get excited about trying a new bike and come back glowing about the experience. The exception is if you have a preconceived, negative or neutral connotation.

   comparing frames posted by John E on 8/7/2003 at 1:52:18 PM
Wheels and tyres make a HUGE difference in performance. Frame geometry will determine steering/handling characteristics and climbing/sprinting efficiency and can noticeably affect ride quality. My 1959 Capo and my 1981 Bianchi, each reflecting the respective fashionable frame geometry for mid/high-level road bikes of its day, corner, descend, and climb very differently. However, on a level cruise with comparable tyres, they feel quite similar, although the Capo's long fork rake and long, skinny stays make it more forgiving over bumps.

When comparing two frames, make it a fair test, with comparable tyres and near-identical seat height, handlebar reach, etc.

   A little about Aluminum posted by Mark C. on 8/7/2003 at 4:48:25 PM
Since you guys are so nice to teach me about vintage lightweights I thought I would offer my limited knowledge about aluminum if you are interested. Just like steel can be of differing grades, so can aluminum. In a very general view aluminum grades are usually a four digit designation with the first digit being the general alloy and the remaining 3 being sub-category alloys. Aluminums starting with 1XXX and 3XXX are low strength decorative type alloys, the 6XXX is the common work horse series (most weldable also) and 2XXX & 7XXX are your more exotic high strength alloys. Also important are the tempers and heat treatment usually indicated by a -TXX after the alloy number (i.e. 6061-T6). Aluminum can be easily heat treated and make tremedous gains in strength and toughness. 6061 is the one of the most common alloy used in making strong parts and extrusions when cost is important. The 7xxx series seen on modern bikes are much more expensive but allow lighter parts due to higher strength. If you have read this far thanks for looking and I hope I added something useful for everyone. If someone needs more info let me know!

   RE:A little about Aluminum and Raleigh "Technium" posted by JONathan on 8/7/2003 at 6:57:13 PM
Couple hours after a nice meal, a shot of coffee and twilight over the cordgrass is a great for the psyche. The Team Fuji is the closest I have to a road-racer, par excellance. The Raleigh is a novelty, yet a fast bike for a short haul. I guess the indexed 14 speed has apppeal. The Team is all friction-shifting...a true vintage bike, IMHO. The Team is more forgiving on dimpled blacktop, too.
I guess I got a reality check, here. I tend to be a dreamer. The exotic (to me) nature of the technium triggered my imagination of it being (in my ignorance) a real "special" bike. It still is my only aluminum bike. Mark, thanks for the Aluminum information. Thanks for posting. I am a bit better informed for the next Al bike that comes my way. Thanks, gents, for the words of wisdom. JONathan

   early '90's Techniums posted by JONathan on 8/8/2003 at 6:32:45 PM
I got worried after the time frame for possible production. Seems there were problems with the frames of the bike around that period. I ran to the garage to check and there wasn't a "3" in the serial number, so I slept easier.
The fear that I have for Aluminum in structural applications, other than "fail-safe" implementation, is that the breakage is right-now, whereas, good ol' steel has the admiral attribute of ductility...which to me, means less chance for an unscheduled "gravity check"....Thanks, JONathan

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Nishiki International posted by: J. Collins on 8/7/2003 at 4:32:56 AM
Good evening -- need some assistance from the Nishiki owners and experts. Found a Nishiki International for sale -- the serial # appears to be K S(or 5) 1Y8408, with a big W under it. It is a grey color. It has a nice brass headset logo that reads Nishiki Made in Japan. and is a lugged frame. Had Suntour vgt rearm der, dia-compe brakes, Sugino Maxy 2 chainring cotterless crank, 5 speed Suntour Perfect freewheel, 27 x 1 1/4 Araya HP rims.. How can i find out what year it is? On the seat tube and the fork tubes is a decal with yellow, blue, and red colors, but no writing -- so I am unsure what the decal means for the metal used in the frame. Anybody know anything that they could pass along? Thanks.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Nishiki International posted by Skip on 8/7/2003 at 7:45:18 AM
Hello J. Collins -
One way is to find the dates on the components (assuming they are original). Have a look at

      Nishiki International posted by John E on 8/7/2003 at 2:02:16 PM
"KS" denotes Kawamura, Nishiki's frame builder through the 1970s. "W" denotes "West Coast Cycle Supply," Nishiki's distributor during the same time period.

Under the American Eagle marque, Nishiki entered the American market ca. 1968, with the Semi-Pro (d.b. CrMo main tubes, wrap-around stays, Sugino Mighty crankset). In late 1971 or early 1972, they added the Kokusai ("International" in Japanese), with straight-gauge CrMo and the lower-end Maxy crankset. A few months later, they dropped the American Eagle name, and the Kokusai eventually was rechristened the International, and the Semi-Pro became the Competition. (They may have been inspired by Raleigh's model names.) I think your production year falls between 1973 and 1977, inclusive. By the late 1970s, sidepull brakes and 6-speed freewheels were becoming the norm.

I bought a new SemiPro in March 1971 for $150 and rode it for 20 years and 40K miles, until the BB shell broke at the seat tube lug. It served me well over a double century (1972), a few centuries, and numerous club rides and hill climbs, but it was heavy, spongy, and "dead" (non-resilient), compared to European bikes in comparable or higher price ranges. In contrast, later Nishikis were truly world class.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Nishiki International posted by Tom on 8/7/2003 at 6:13:54 PM
Perhaps we can narrow things down a bit. My 1977 International was spec'd with Shimano 600 derailleurs. The 1976 International was spec'd with VT Lux deraileurs and bar-end shifters!

So, it appears your model may be 1973-1975, however there is always the possibility that some components may have been changed or re-spec'd due to shortages. If you can use the data from the Vintage Trek to date three or more components within the same year, you should have good confidence in the model year.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Nishiki International posted by J. Collins on 8/8/2003 at 3:41:58 AM
Thanks for your thoughtful, kind, and informative remarks about the Nishiki -- I enjoy the reading and learning I am able to do from the informed experts on this site. I had known about (and then forgotten) the vintage components date charts, so have now printed it out again. I appreciate the information about the codes and the dates and the maker and distributor of the Nishiki.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Nishiki International posted by Warren on 8/11/2003 at 5:00:03 PM
I was just given an old, neglected Nishiki from a friend. Judging from the descriptions given in this thread, it seems to be a Semi Pro or Competition, because it has full wrap-around seat stays, and Sugino Mighty Crankset. Unfortunately, the bike had an amateur paintjob and all the decals removed. The original old-style Nishiki headbadge is the only identifying marker. Where are serial numbers located? Are there any other models of Nishiki that have full wrap-around seat stays? The other components on the bike are Suntour Cyclone II derailleurs, Dia-compe standard (long) reach sidepull brakes, and Avocet hubs on 700C rims (may not be original). The lugged frame's geometry is touring, and it has fender eyelets. What material would this frame be made of, and is it double-butted?

I'm planning on getting her back into running condition, but I'll probably leave the paint as-is.