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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

FOR SALE:†††Road Bikes Cheap NOS posted by: Tom on 9/12/2003 at 5:55:39 AM
I saw this andf thought you guys may want to check it out. www.velomech.ch

   RE:FOR SALE:†††Road Bikes Cheap NOS posted by Ken on 9/12/2003 at 7:14:18 PM
This is an amazing list of parts- I was looking for Accushift levers. But I can't make out how the site works, prices, ordering etc. Does anybody have any experience with velomech.ch ?

   RE:FOR SALE:†††Road Bikes Cheap NOS posted by Tom M on 9/12/2003 at 11:11:02 PM
I saw this site on a posting on the "general for sale " discussion area. His name is Ernie and his posting is on page 2 today(Fri). If you click on his name on the top of his posting you get his email address.

   RE:FOR SALE:†††Road Bikes Cheap NOS posted by Rob on 9/12/2003 at 11:30:07 PM
Neat site...even if you don't order anything the photos are excellent...I think if you want something you e-mail him and he gives you a quote...personally, I prefer to see price lists, but I know they are a lot of work to maintain...And, heck, it's his business anyway...

WANTED:†††Site for Sekine bikes posted by: Tom on 9/12/2003 at 5:48:48 AM
I saw a while back a site for Sekine bikes. I think it was another Tom who posted it. Could someone post the site again.

   RE:WANTED:†††Site for Sekine bikes posted by Tom on 9/12/2003 at 12:09:27 PM
I believe this is the site you are looking for:

If you use the search engine for the this site (i.e. Old Roads), you will find additional info that is not on the above site. Most of the info for the above site came from my Old Roads postings and e-mails with the site's webmaster though Randy's site does have the distinct advantage of having pictures for several models and some interesting info on other Canadian makes.

If you have any further questions on Sekine, please feel free to contact me. I worked for one of the largest Sekine dealers during the 70's bike boom.

   RE:WANTED:†††Site for Sekine bikes posted by Tom M on 9/12/2003 at 2:03:32 PM
Tom thanks for the site info. I am going to look at a few bikes this weekend. 2 are Sekine Medialle bikes, 1 red and 1 light blue. There is also a bike advertised as a "Tour Du Quebec" I have not heard of it before. Any Ideas on what it might be. Also a Quebecor bike. No idea what this is either. Do you have any experience with any Eaton's lightweight bikes. There is an Eatons lightweight bike at a local bike shop still NOS. It is maybe early 80's in a very tall frame. Very nice and light also a very tall frame. I don't remember the components, could have been Raleigh stamped. I saw it in the spring. I did see it 3 years ago and it is still there. They want a lot of money for it($400can).
There is a Sekine Medialle bike at my work. White with alloy wheels, I cannot remember what the rest of the components were.
I see a lot of Sekine bikes and will look more closely at them.

   RE:WANTED:†††Site for Sekine bikes posted by Tom on 9/12/2003 at 2:45:00 PM
Most Sekine do not have model names/numbers on them, though some later models did. The "Medialle" is not the model name. It is appears on headbadges used by Sekine during during the post-boom era, though I have yet to determine the actual years of use. "Medialle" headbadges can be found on all models of Sekine bicycles, not just the top end models, as some imply.

The most prevalent models around to-day are those from the bike boom years. I previously posted the model designations and component mixes for the these bikes. Try the Old Roads search engine. If you can't find it, e-mail me or post the details on the bikes and I'll try to help you out.

I have limited knowledge regarding the Eaton's bicycles, though my sister had one in the later 60's. They were typical department store fare, from what I remember. Offhand, I don't recall a Tour du Quebec model. Again, if you get some details, maybe we can advise you further.

   RE:RE:WANTED:†††Site for Sekine bikes posted by Titlist on 9/12/2003 at 3:31:22 PM
This is a very fine website, thanks for mentioning it. I like the refurbishing section.

I've got to think, in Japan, and Capitalistic Japan at that, if room for entrepenuers, models of bicycles, may have been made and name plates affixed of varying companies.

After, never noting the brand "Cherry" out of Japan, in the past month, I have seen two bike boom types of bikes. Furthermore, the name plate/headbadges are different, one is just the word spelt out in black, Cherry, on a silver sort of headbadge. The other headbadge, actually, had an illustration of a cherry on it, yet this headbadge was black and silver once again.

AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by: Larry T. on 9/12/2003 at 1:15:06 AM
I just bought a Raleigh Super Course and am trying to find the age of it. The serial number guides that are posted have not been helpful. The serial number is 0020228 with no letter either before or after the number. It is made in England and has the Carlton decal on the seat tube along with a 531 tubing decal. The brake lever covers are also marked Carlton. The crank looks like an older style. Anyone have an idea as to the age?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by JONathan on 9/12/2003 at 4:08:37 AM
1970 had Nervar steel cranks with alloy chainrings; Huret-Luxe derailer.
1976 had SR cranks with Weinmann 999 cp brakes. 1978 had 2030 tubing...just like the RRA's!
I'd guess around early '70's; maybe earlier.

   Correction: Super Course posted by JONathan on 9/12/2003 at 4:53:14 AM
Sorry. The 1970 has Nervar cottered cranks, as I looked closer at the catalog picture, it has 6 arm spider, too.
The '76 is cotterless Nervar steel cranks with alloy chainrings. The SR was out of the blue. What was I thinking.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Rob on 9/12/2003 at 6:00:28 AM
I'll see if I can help narrow it down a bit...I have two Super Courses; the first 1971...coffee-colored, oval flat anniversary headbadge...steel cottered cranks, long Huret downtube shifters, Carlton hoods, Weinmann brakes, derailleurs both replaced before I got it, steel rims, 531 plain gauge main tubes. The second one is around 1973, bronze green, raised Heron headbadge,Weinmann brakes, Carlton hoods, GB stem (and likely bars)...the serial #s on both are also without letters...but I've kind of given up trying to figure out their serial # sequences....drive train and wheels had all been upgraded when I got it, so I'm not sure what was original...I suspect Simplex...Can't think of anything else...

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Warren on 9/12/2003 at 12:25:08 PM
I have a red Super Course MK II that appears to date from 77. Weinman Centre pulls, Raleigh branded Suntour VGT derailleurs and Sugino crank. GB bars/stem w white Carlton hoods. Alloy rims on Suzue hubs.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE: Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Warren on 9/12/2003 at 12:29:36 PM
I forgot to mention it's also plain gauge 531...a great riding frame and my current fixed gear commuter.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Rob on 9/12/2003 at 5:46:25 PM
I forgot to mention...the hubs on the '71 SC are high flange Campy...probably low end, and I'm sure original, matched to steel rims, probably an English make...odd, I would forget about the hubs...that's probably what compelled me to pay $30 CDN for the bike... It also has an AVA stem, again I'm sure that's original.

On the '73, for reasons that are a bit long winded for this post, I found a some of Raleigh-branded SunTour components which I've put on the bike...rear der. and crankset...these components had date codes, from, I think, 1976 and 1977...I don't think SunTour was used on Raleighs until about 1976...I might be off a bit on this...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Rob on 9/12/2003 at 5:53:27 PM
Oops...the crankset is, of course, not SunTour, but rather part of that general gruppo...What is it again,...Sakae or SR???....anyway Japanese and definitely nothing to do with Shimano...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Larry T. on 9/13/2003 at 11:51:35 AM
Just checked and noticed that the cranks are marker 'Made by Stronglight'. Front brake is Weinmann 610 Vainqueur 999; rear break is Weinmann 750 Vainqueur 999. Stem is marked 'GB'. Forks have decals stating 'Carlton Race Proved Workshop England'.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Larry T. on 9/13/2003 at 11:59:46 AM
Stronglight crank is cottered. Front and rear derailluars are Simplex. Both wheels are 'Nisi-Evian made in Italy'

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Age of a Raleigh Super Course posted by Larry T. on 9/13/2003 at 12:02:26 PM
Just checked and noticed that the cranks are marked 'Made by Stronglight'. Front brake is Weinmann 610 Vainqueur 999; rear break is Weinmann 750 Vainqueur 999. Stem is marked 'GB'. Forks have decals stating 'Carlton Race Proved Workshop England'.

AGE / VALUE:†††just wondering posted by: Amiee on 9/11/2003 at 3:51:27 PM
I just bought a Western Flyer/Galaxy Flayer Girls bike,all original from 1977.It needs new tires and one new tube.the paint job is perfect,needs a little cleaning on the crome areas but other than that it looks like it's in great shape.I bought it for 26$ and will probably end up puting anywhere from 30-60$ into it,I'd like to put whitewall tires on it and maybe dress it up a little bit.Was this a good price to pay for this peticular bike?Or wasn't it worth the $ or time I'll be puting into it?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††just wondering posted by JONathan on 9/12/2003 at 12:51:31 AM
Sure it is worth the bucks, in my opinion. They are collectible, too. At least the older ones are highly prized...more in the balloon-tire league, which has a page here.
Check it out. If you can get a bike rolling for under $100 US, total cost which includes the parts, that is pretty good. Before jumping into resroration, check to be sure everything is sound with the frame and forks. Sometimes, you have to spiff it a bit to even see defects like cracked tubes or joints. Do all that. A bike shop can help check all that, then buy the parts.
This is assuming you have at least tried it out for fit, comfort, etc.
I have those white-walls on a Raleigh "lizard" old school MTB as my beach-cruiser. I think about $50 did it. The tires deteriorate fast, but just keep them clean. What is the drivetrain. Single speed, coaster brake? Western Flyers were made by several makers...Cleveland Welding is the main one, I can recall. I've seen 3-speeds made in England, if I recall.
I think you have a great bike.
Good luck.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††just wondering posted by Ron on 9/12/2003 at 9:23:14 AM
We got a Galaxy Flier for my daughter a couple years ago for $30 at a flea market, also in very good condition. I think the new tires were about $15 each. It has 24" tires, so it was not easy to find non-mountain bike tires. We found them at a bike shop.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:†††"Shorties" posted by: Titlist on 9/11/2003 at 2:11:43 PM
To me, the logic behind shorties, is it seems it would protect your upper body from getting splashed, but not one's lower body. This is why, one can see, some French cycling race seen, poster on my wall, they are covered with mud. Shorties are used, because they are more "aero dynamic" ; full fenders, would probably be more wind resistant. No one asked for my opinion on this, this is what I figure.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by JONathan on 9/11/2003 at 4:13:35 PM
Interesting point. I use a 1/2 plastic on the rear. The wet stuff flies out the back, so I avoid the "skunk stripe" effect.
In front, I use a full plastic and I get splattered in the lower end. Mud guards are necessary to divert matter away from the BB.
This is on a 38-622 tire size on a Giant "nutra" (cross), late 80's. As for the aerodynamics? The dynamic friction bleeds off power as a function of velocity-squared. The low velocity I run at in wet does not make any difference what fenders/no fenders
I'm running. But, on those clear spells, the less scoop there is, the better. But that's here. We have a lot of clay and continental sediment in the soil that makes for a grease-like and ball-bearing like emulsion that spreads thin on the path. There is virtual zero friction through that stuff, so I go real slow in the wet.
No turns at speed! In some dirt roads the sludge gangs up between the fender and the chain-stays and it dries like concrete. The stubby fenders would be a better choice. I take allthat stuff off, if I am recreating! Mud is fun.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Dave on 9/11/2003 at 7:20:28 PM
I use the original steel fenders on my '64 Varsity commuter but in the Midwest winter, the road salt takes its toll. A old Trek I once had the salt got packed into both brake caliper pivots and corroded them so badly the calipers were shot.A trick read about from St. Paul,MN., cyclists was to coat the inside of your fenders w/ski wax so the snow wouldn't stick to them. I may try that. Shorties keep your lower headset bearings and brake caliper pivots from premature failure but that's about all they do.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Tom on 9/12/2003 at 12:38:19 PM
Actually, I believe the "shorties" developed as a direct result of the 70's lightness fad. At that time, cylists believed that the quickest route to a faster bicycle was a lighter bicycle. Consequently, people started drilling out all the components on their bike. Framebuilders started picking up the trend and tried to lighten their framesets in various ways. Among the techiques were bottom bracket cut-outs, drilled dropouts, the elimination of "heavy" chrome plating on the lugs and stays, and brazed-on bosses versus clamp fittings for cable guides/stops, levers and front derailleurs. However, another fallout from this lightness fetish were the fender eyelets from the dropouts. Without the eyelets, one could not run full-size fenders (or mudguards as they were called back then). Consequently, the partial fender was adapted. Being relatively ineffective, they were seen as a "better than nothing" solution. The alternative was a set of full guards, with clamps, which was considered heresy on a top line racing bicycle, especially if you had the brazed-on fittings for everything else!

By the time the aero revolution hit in the early 80's, the "drilling" fad was pretty much fazed out. Component manufacturers and framebuilders had been enlightened by the consumer's hunger for less weight and were providing it off the shelf. The fender eyelets had virtually disappeared from all the racing bikes and were starting to disappear even on the mid-range sports bikes.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/12/2003 at 1:45:23 PM
Thanks all for the information.

by the way, I thought, on the question of the words used, this is another example of a different word used in England,

Mudguards used in the UK, Fenders in the US.

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/12/2003 at 2:47:04 PM
by the way, not for auction, but someone selling Bluemel yellow mudguards, wouldn't that look fine, on the Super Tourer; http://retroraleighs.com/catalogs/1976/pages/08-76-super-tourer.html ; but at $70 ; not my cup of tea, then one has to find Fender/Muduard stays. Maybe one could salvage some else where, or even fashion one's own. Shorties, might not look bad on such a bike, if for utilitarian purposes, perhaps, sks $20 fenders will do the job.

On my 3 speed, my after market aluminum fenders on a good descent ; don't know, they may have been flapping a little, I didn't have my helmets, so I braked, to slow the pace down. Let alone, I was ahead of 3 others in the group.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Tom on 9/12/2003 at 3:02:01 PM
Yes, the term "mudguards" originated in Great Britain. However, prior to the 70's bike boom anybody with a lightweight bicycle tended to identify with the European cyclist, as most of the bicycles and cycling literature originated there. Consequently, people in this group tended to use the term "mudguards", even on the American side of the Atlantic. The term "fenders" started to creep in during the bike boom when the American, general public discovered lightweight bicycles. As a result, during the boom, the old guard and die-hards favoured "mudguards", while the newbies tended towards "fenders". At least, that's the way I recall things.

   fender/mudguard; hood/bonnet; trunk/boot posted by John E on 9/12/2003 at 3:22:21 PM
"on the question of the words used, this is another example of a different word used in England -- Mudguards used in the UK, Fenders in the US."

Ah yes -- "two countries divided by a common language." Having worked with many British expats in the video electronics field and having primarily Scottish DNA, I often sprinkle my written and oral communications with British spellings, words, and/or pronunciations.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/12/2003 at 3:46:42 PM
I am extrapolating info again, and don't dispute anything anyone says; I must think, say, you have giant bike manufacturing companies, Schwinn on this side, making such things, as ducktail fenders, years ago. Then one has an equally entrenched company, in England, Raleigh, the black out mudguard stripe and all of that on 3 speeds. Doubt if they are going to change their terminology to placate Americans, though, perhaps even their US equivalent Raleigh USA would. I just thank you for exchanging info. on this topic. Gee, I couldn't even find "fender" as having a French equivalent on an online dictionary, but the word almost sounds french in origin. Excuse me for the tangent. Chrome fenders is a household word mainly due to those big finned machines out of the motorcity, some years ago. A good discussion topic; for a coffee shop, tavern or atop some velos.

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/12/2003 at 3:56:12 PM
p.s. I don't doubt, what Tom has said, about Fender creeping into the Bicycle lexicon and becoming a more popular word.

This is delving into the subject in detail; but isn't it interesting, what I see on the big semi/diesel trucks, below the fenders, mudflaps, and of course, on bicycles, one is able to style mudflaps or purchase them to affix to the ....?

   RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by JONathan on 9/12/2003 at 4:22:44 PM
Fender sounds more universal to me. Substitute "mud flap" for "mud guard". The redundancy of terms was unintentional.
The "mud FLAPS" are what keeps all the gunky stuff away from the BB, but you have the obstacle hanging down when you least need it.
Water adheres to some degree on the upward sweep of the tire, but grit will sling off at a tangent due to greater mass. Which, IMHO, leads to the splattered shoes and BB's.
Shoes can be washed off, but the abrasive matter that gets into the bearing surfaces is a problem. I have rather big clumpers so I avoid mud flaps. I guess if you clean and grease the BB every spring, the problem is academic.
In the short rake, steep angle forks, I catch the fender on tight turns at slow speed. My UE-8 is not a problem with the fenders. My Schwinn "Traveler" would be. The Zefal plastic fenders are cool. I can unscrew the knurled nut and snap them loose from the seat-tube (rear only) and bungee them onto the rack for a clear weather ride home.
The Giant "nutra" has plenty of GC so it avoids a lot of debris. Great bike for off-weather commutes. I say unless the fit is perfect, I would avoid using mud flaps. BTW, the plastic won't rust or corrode (AL). Here we don't have the salt dispensed on the roads, although black ice is a problem in the Sierras.
Good day.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Tom on 9/12/2003 at 6:08:39 PM
I believe the French word for fender is "aile", while mudguard is "guarde-boue", so neither term appears to have their origin with the French language. I believe fender was the original term for the the "cow catchers" attached to steam locomotives to push obstructions off the tracks and prevent derailments (model railroading is another hobby of mine). This term was in place long before automobiles. Given this application, you would think that "fender" would have been applied to the "bumpers" of cars. Any automotive experts out there who can enlighten us on this?

It is very interesting how terminolgy is modified by the progress of time. One of my pet peeves is the interchanging of the words "spindle" and "axle". Originally the term "spindle" was applied to rotating rods. The term "axle" was used for a stationary rod, that something else spun around. Thus, the rod in a bicycle's bottom bracket is a "spindle", because it spins. The rod in a bicyle's hub is an axle, because it the the stationary axis that the hub /wheel spins around. These days the term "axle" is commonly used for spindles and axles, to the extent that many modern dictionaries no longer make the distinction. Personally, I think this is a very sad commentary on to-day's society, where the emphasis is on getting things done quickly, as opposed to doing them correctly.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Rob on 9/12/2003 at 6:10:16 PM
Another interesting thread...having a British background myself, I know all about these different words and spellings...years ago my mom told me she caught on early that she had to use Canadian (essentially American) words to avoid confusing us kids...I think fender is the better word...it is, as JONathan says, universal, it 'fends' off water and snow as well as mud...mud flaps are the little (on bikes anyway) add-ons that catch the heavy stuff with the low trajectory aimed at your feet and the BB...I think, nowadays, the British all know what fenders are, and likely are no longer thinking in nautical terms...

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/13/2003 at 12:43:59 AM
for item # 2190587829 auction, a new one on me, was "wheel guard" ... so hey! what do you know .


" Guards:

Does have some rust on back wheel guard and chain guard. There is no wheel guard over front wheel.
Tires: "

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Tom on 9/13/2003 at 2:13:07 AM
I believe "wheel guards" is a hold over from the from the very early days of safety bicyles. From what I've read, female riders were expected to ride in ankle length skirts, which were subject to catching in the spokes of the rear wheel. Many mnaufacturers marketed elaborate guards for the sides of the wheel , to prevent this. I've seen elaborate rope and metal lattices that fastened to fenders/mudguards on the rear wheel. Do we have a follower that is also into antique bikes, who can ratify this?

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/13/2003 at 3:02:44 PM
Even "Universal" can be subjective. How about a subcontinent of over a billion people, http://www.goldstarind.com/mgrdndx.htm (sidenote, btw, one site, about those who make parts that make bicycles possible...however that was said) ; however, this is the LW thread, I know what word would be more proper in the Roadster thread. Ever the Twains shall meet. And after all, I don't champion one word over another, that being subjective, say, it is difficult to say, and may be your proverbial oxymoron, "chrome mudguards"

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by JONathan on 9/13/2003 at 8:58:47 PM
OK, substitute "universal" with "general"; as opposed to "specific", like "mud guard". Does a mud guard "fend" off water? Yes. Ergo, fender is the more general descriptive term that has universally applicable to any matter that flies off the tires. In biology, it is different.
We try to narrow things to a very specific term to avoid confusion...something which colloquialisms generate ad infinitum. "Oh, I get it, you mean ...". How about "splash protectors"? "Splatter shields"? Or, my favorite; "desplaced matter deflectors"?
One thing is certain to me. Fenders are a pain to have attached when you don't need them.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:††† posted by Titlist on 9/14/2003 at 6:45:10 PM
Though this thread has run its course, curious, JONathan, that "splash guards" is a term used ; think for SUV type vehicles.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by: Titlist on 9/11/2003 at 7:01:00 AM
From everything I've read, I may have to buy one myself, sometime. Popular bikes, your Raleigh Records, Grand Prixs, are almost household names, or are. This one might be on its way.

So, web pix aren't that hard to find, this site is interesting, if not the exact same make,


Talk of weight, the one thing, at the health club, I ought to exercise, my torso, like I have my legs, on that one leg press machine, I can surprise myself, and others, at what I can push up (lower leg muscles).

   †††Nishiki Olympic posted by John E on 9/11/2003 at 1:26:04 PM
When collecting Nishikis, particularly as daily drivers, favor late 1970s specimens over their early 1970s cousins. Although I rode a 1971 American Eagle SemiPro / Nishiki Competition for 20 years and 40K miles, including a double metric century through the hills of Santa Cruz and Palo Alto in 1971 and a 12:18 Los Angeles Wheelmen Double Century in 1972, my opinion of its Ishiwata double-butted CrMo frame is unfavorable -- lacking the resilience of a high-end European frame, it had a very dead, spongy feel and weighed as much as a Peugeot UO-8 frame. Likewise, the first-generation Olympics of the early 1970s were real tanks compared to the CrMo-framed, aluminum-cranked Olympic 12s of the late 1970s. However, I could get very excited about a Nishiki Professional from the early 1980s!

   RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Gralyn on 9/11/2003 at 8:22:40 PM
I had probably a mid-to-late 80's Sport....ChroMo, alloy components, it was pretty light, and in great condition. I passed it on...and I didn't mind it too much.
But, I had probably a mid-to-late 70's Custom 12 - for it's age - it was excellent. It was just a little heavy and geared high. I got rid of it....but I kind of regret doing that. I also had a Nishiki Olympic 12 with Tange 5 tubing. I only had it a short while - then passed it on. I have an old Olympic - the paint was pretty bad - and no more than I had in it - I decided to go ahead and paint it - and converted it to fixed-gear. I like the way it looks: it's a soft yellow, with white turbo saddle, white bar tape, shinny chrome rims with high flange hubs. I believe it even has forged drop-outs. Half-chrome fork, I added an alloy crank set and alloy pedals.
The Olympic I recently acquired is basically equipped the same as the one I converted to fixed-gear - except the finish is salvageable on this one. I will keep it all original - including the huge spoke guard.
If I had kept all those Nishiki's - I would have "collection" of Nishiki's for sure!

   RE:RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Titlist on 9/12/2003 at 12:48:30 AM
"What a boat!" I had a friend from Calif. who use to say that. Probably said around the nation, but I remember, he use to say that in reference to a car, some 70s decade Le Mans I believe, like a '75.

   RE:RE:RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Ron on 9/12/2003 at 9:30:35 AM
When we referred to a car being a boat, we meant it was big, heavy, heeled way over in the turns, and had a ride like being on the high seas, i.e. mushy. I would equate that to a balloon tired cruiser bike.

   ††Nishiki Olympic posted by John E on 9/12/2003 at 3:27:12 PM
"When we referred to a car being a boat, we meant it was big, heavy, heeled way over in the turns, and had a ride like being on the high seas, i.e. mushy. I would equate that to a balloon tired cruiser bike."

I am not a weight fanatic by any means (my lightest bike, the Bianchi, weighs 10kg), but I would describe many heavy road bikes, such as Varsities and early Olympics, in nautical terms.

AGE / VALUE:†††Basso posted by: Brandt on 9/10/2003 at 10:53:48 PM
Can anyone tell me info about Basso bicycles? I just bought one at an auction and was wondering how old it is. Looks maybe like late 80's or early 90's. Has brake cables hidden under the handle bar tape, but still has down tube shifters (indexed). All components are Mavic - wheels, hubs, cranks, brakes, derailleurs - all Mavic. Wheels are 700's. Made in Italy. Columbus tubing SLX and lugged frame. Any info is appreciated.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Basso posted by Walter on 9/11/2003 at 12:38:24 AM
I have a Basso, bought as frame only on eBay and built with Csampy S Record. Columbus SL. They're still making bikes and their site may have some history. I know they were around during most if not all of the 80s. Until quite recently they sold a lugged frameset called "Gap."Bassos were/are solid Italian framesets. Not the heritage of Masi or Cinelli nor the flash of Colnago but well made good riding bikes.

Campy responded to Shimano's indexing by 87 or so and the D/T Synchros continued into the 90s (I'm not sure when) until replaced by the current Ergo lines. CampyOnly.com has a Campy timeline that might help you date your bike via components.

Nice bike. Enjoy it.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Basso posted by Tom on 9/11/2003 at 1:33:32 AM
Wow, great bike! The Mavic group is very unique and not often found. I suspect this will become very collectible over the next ten, or so, years. Keep it in good condition!

Regarding the age, I suspect it is early '90s. My 1988 Cycle Goods catalog shows only the retro-friction version, while the index version is in the 1990 catalogs. I suppose it could have been introduced in 1989, but I have no documentation to back that up. The electronic ZAP system was introduced in 1994, so if I had to hazard a guess, I would say your Basso is from the period 1989-1993. Close enough? Perhaps, if you take a close look at the backside of the components, you may find some daye codes. Good luck.

Warren, FYI, I believe that Campagnolo debuted the Ergo, shifting, brake levers in 1992.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Basso posted by Dave on 9/11/2003 at 2:04:35 PM
I know someone with a Gap very nice w/silver lugs and Shimano 105 group from this timeframe but I'm afraid he only rides a Litespeed Titanium now,(a real shame).

MISC:†††Nishiki "Olympic" posted by: JONathan on 9/10/2003 at 10:43:05 PM
Wasn't sure if you got this post as it came in out of sequence in the below discussion...as Rob pointed out, that means a re-read to make sure a new note isn't overlooked.

OK, gents, I checked my "Olympic". Weight is 39# with fletscher rack;
sawed off kickstand...now that is wierd. I guess they had a hacksaw, but not
an adjustable wrench! Light set with generator. Say 38#. What a load to
Shimano "eagle" re. der. with "Thunderbird" fr. der. Shimano freewheel with
steel, narrow ga. rims. KB "champion" bars with SR stem. Dia-Compe
(Weinmann copy) cp's. Look like 610's.
Really long alloy rubber-jacketed stem shifters, also Shimano. These are fit
for the job, too. No scrawny metal finger piching shifters on this model.
Half-chrome forks. Seat is generic replacement. Not quite the mass of a
clean "varsity", but close enough to be in the same ring.
This particular bike is a definite keeper. I dig that "thunderbird" snowplow
looking front derailer. Huge chromed chainwheel guard is impressive, too. A
classic bike for half the price of a box of deck screws!
Can't figure that out, still.
Except for the punched out lens on the front spotlight, everything is ready to
go for a sunday afternoon cruise.
The brakes have the extension levers, too.

   RE:MISC:†††Nishiki posted by Gralyn on 9/11/2003 at 2:55:50 AM
I checked mine out this evening. It does have the shimano shifters (rubber booted), Shimano Eagle der. It's big and pretty heavy. Has that huge spoke guard on the rear wheel. Also has a huge chain guard thing on the crank set. I also picked up a Schwinn World sport with alloy wheels and ChroMo frame in the same size. I compared the weight between the two....big difference! I'll bet the Olympic is pushing 40 lbs.....probably high 30's.

   RE:RE:MISC:†††Nishiki posted by Dave on 9/11/2003 at 2:09:38 PM
I have a friend with a bright orange one just like yours he loves riding it, he calls it his "cheesy poof" bike. My knees would be causing the bike to auto shift with those huge suntour stem levers though.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:†††Gitane Olympic Record II posted by: TomF on 9/10/2003 at 4:43:24 PM
I bought this bike in 1978 for $180. new. It has beautiful lugwork and pinstriping, low-end Suntour derailleurs, Weinemann centerpulls, Araya rims and Suntour bar-ends. It has always been well cared for and other than some small paint nicks and a little pitting on the chrome is almost new-looking. Can anyone tell me more about this bike, especially the tubing material? It has a decal that says, "Gitane Super Legres" on it. I'm not looking to sell it, I only want to know more about it. As I remember, it was the second model down in the Gitane catalog lineup that year but that was too long ago to be sure.



   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:†††Gitane Olympic Record II posted by Tom on 9/10/2003 at 9:34:30 PM
I concur with John's assessment. "Super Legeres" means Super Light. It was Gitane's terminology for their seamless, lightweight, carbon steel tubing.

I found a comparison test in Bicycling, July 1978, for low and middleweight 10 speeds. The 3 French low end bikes were the Gitane Newport ($160), Peugeot A-08 ($162) and Motobecane Nomade ($160). Knowing the position in the line-up for the two competing models, I would deduce that the Newport was Gitane's least expensive lightweight at that time. Given that the Olympic Record II was only $20 more, the assumption would be that it was their second least expensive lightweight.

Based on the article, it appears that all of Gitane's frame manufacture and assembly for low and middle range bicycles had shifted to Japan, which explains the Japanese components. Notably, the Peugeot were still all French. The low end Motobecane was all French while the mid range Motobocane had a French frame with Japanese components.

   ††Gitane Olympic Record II posted by John E on 9/10/2003 at 5:54:12 PM
At that price and what that nomenclature, I suspect it was made out of plain gauge carbon steel. The components are definitely nicer than those of a Peugeot UO-8*, and from what I have seen of both marques, the workmanship on the frame should be superior, as well.

* I have SunTour barcons and derailleurs on my UO-8. :)

AGE / VALUE:†††St. Etienne Bicycle posted by: Tom on 9/10/2003 at 1:43:14 PM
About a month ago, someone had posted an inquiry on St. Etienne bicycles. Well, I just came across a St. Etienne road test in a 1974 issue of Bicycling.

St. Etienne bicycles were manufactured by Cycles France-Loire and are named after the city where the factory was located. Manufacturing started in 1925 by the Sabila family which had immigrated to France, from Italy. Originally, production was limited to hand-crafted frames which were sold to other French manufacturers for assembly into bicycles. In 1960, the Sabila family sold the business and production of complete bicycles commenced. During the heyday of the bike 1970's bike boom, the factory was producing 75,000-100,000 bicycles per year.

As an afternote, I have noticed that the that there is a current company, Cycles Mercier France-Loire. The company produces Mercier and Poulidor lighweights, in addition to other styles of bicyles. My assumption is that the companies merged sometime after the 70's and the St. Etienne brand was dropped in favour of the more marketable Mercier and Poulidor brands.

Reagrding the poster's bicycle, it would appear to be a model US-10. The model was basically a competitor for the Peugeot A0-08, that is to say carbon steel frame, Simplex Prestige derailleurs, cottered steel 42/52Tcranks, Mafac Racer brakes, Cyclo 14-28T freewheel, Eclair pedals, Pera plastic saddle, alloy hubs with wing nuts, laced to steel 27 x 1-1/4" rims. The article's photo shows a white frame, with gold pinstriping on the lugs and no chrome. The stickers appear to be foil based. The round,head tube sticker is an image of the globe with the the world champion stripes running across the equator region and "Saint Etienne" superimposed on the stripes. Other stickers indlude the brand on the downtube, world champion stipes on the seat tube and what appears to be a tubing decal at the top of the seat tube.

I trust this helps.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††St. Etienne Bicycle posted by Titlist on 9/10/2003 at 2:38:43 PM

T-Shirt, about St. Etienne,

St. …tienne A mid-range marque. The city of St. …tienne was for many years the capitol of the French bicycle industry. - http://www.sheldonbrown.com/velos.html

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††St. Etienne Bicycle posted by Jacques on 9/11/2003 at 6:41:17 PM


Tout au long du mois de juin, Eurosport.fr
vous propose de vous plonger dans la
légende du Tour de France, qui célèbre
cette année son centenaire. Retrouvez
chaque jours le classement des 100 plus
grands champions de l'histoire de la
Grande Boucle. Lundi, Louison Bobet,

Mis en ligne le 28 juin 2003

7. LOUISON BOBET (Français)

Bien avant de devenir Louison, héros de tout un
pays, le jeune Louis Bobet développe des
aptitudes naturelles évidentes à la pratique du sport. Le Breton se distingue
dans toutes les disciplines dans lesquelles il évolue, du football au tennis de
table, dont il devient champion régional peu avant la Seconde Guerre
Mondiale. C'est finalement vers le cyclisme qu'il se dirige, y consacrant
toute son énergie dès la fin des années trente, alors qu'il n'est qu'un

Bobet n'était pas forcément le coureur le plus doué de sa génération, loin de
là. Tout ne sera d'ailleurs pas simple pour lui. Son ascension vers les
sommets se fera progressivement et avant de conna√ģtre la gloire, le Breton
va passer par des moments difficile. "Ce qui l'a sauvé", confie son ami
Raphael Geminiani, avec qui il effectue ses débuts en 1943, "c'est qu'il était
terriblement ambitieux. Dans ce milieu, c'est une qualité indispensable."

Un épisode fameux rend bien compte de cette ambition. Lors du Tour
1950, Bobet attaque à 180 kilomètres de l'arrivée dans l'étape
Briançon-St-Etienne, avec la volonté d'arracher le maillot jaune des épaules
de Ferdi Kubler. Un peu optimiste, il paie son audace, s'effondre et perd
cinq minutes à l'arrivée. "Si tu étais resté tranquille, tu aurais fini deuxième
du Tour ", lui dit Kubler. "Ah oui, et alors? La deuxième place, je m'en fous,
seule la première m'intéresse", répond Bobet.

"La Bobette"

Cette ambition va lui permettre d'endurer les échecs de son début de
carrière, voire les humiliations, qui émaillent ses premiers pas sur le Tour. Sa
première Grande Boucle en 1947, se solde par un abandon après une
chute, pourtant sans gravité, dans les Gorges du Queyras. Un peu vite, un
peu méchamment aussi, il se voit affublé d'un surnom peu enviable: la
"pleureuse", ou encore, la "Bobette". Quelques années plus tard, personne
ne songeait plus à l'appeler ainsi. Il allait devenir Louison.

Le respect, celui de ses pairs, et celui du public, Bobet le gagne en 1948,
dans un combat à la loyale avec le grand Gino Bartali. L'Italien finira par
imposer sa loi, non sans tirer un coup de chapeau au Français, qu'il juge
déjà, à 24 ans, comme un grand champion. Le vénérable Alfredo Binda,
directeur sportif italien, ne dit pas autre chose lorsqu'il déclare: "Si je l'avais
dirigé, c'est lui, Bobet, qui aurait gagné le Tour, et non Bartali ". Le sacre de
Bobet semble alors programmé. Il va pourtant l'attendre encore cinq
longues années.

Malgré ses qualités et son professionnalisme, Louison Bobet engendre
suscite plus de scepticisme que d'enthousiasme au départ de l'édition 1953.
Pour beaucoup, il a laissé filer sa chance. Il souffre par ailleurs d'une
induration récurrente, qui lui pourrit sa vie et sa carrière. Le dernier Giro a
tourné au calvaire pour le Breton, contraint d'abandon sous la neige à deux
jours de l'arrivée. Jusqu'au dernier moment, il hésite à s'aligner sur le Tour.
Mais à 28 ans, le temps ne joue plus en sa faveur. Il décide de prendre le
risque. Bien lui en prend.

La naissance d'un leader

Ce Tour, Bobet va le gagner en s'affirmant au beau milieu de l'épreuve
comme le seul leader valable d'une équipe de France au bord de la crise de
nerfs. Excédé parles rivalités internes entre ses principaux cadors, Marcel
Bidot met les choses au clair à Béziers. "Je ne poserai la question qu'une
fois, et j'attends une réponse nette. Lequel peut ramener le maillot à Paris?
", interroge Bidot. Geminiani et Lauredi avouent leur incertitude quant à leur
forme du moment. Bobet ne se défile pas, et promet d'abandonner ses prix
si l'équipe se met à son service.

La carrière de Louison vient de basculer. Ce soir-là, il s'affirme leader,
verbalement. Les jours suivants, il ajoute les actes à la parole en s'imposant
à Briançon, en montagne, puis contre-la-montre, entre Lyon et
Saint-Etienne. La gloire lui appartient enfin et le Tour de France entre dans
les années Bobet. En 54, il prend sa revanche sur un Kubler vieillissant, et
mate l'ambition grandissante de Gilbert Bauvin qui le malmène dans les
Pyrénées. Ce deuxième succès, c'est celui d'un vrai patron.

A force de travail

Le troisième, et dernier, l'année suivante, s'avère plus laborieux. Gêné par
un furoncle mal placé qui l'empêche pratiquement de s'asseoir sur sa selle
tout autant que par le panache de Gaul et Brankart, Bobet gagne le Tour en
grimaçant. Il n'en sort que plus admiré et plus adulé. Le voilà à l'apogée de
sa carri√®re sportive, l√† o√Ļ il a toujours r√™v√© d'√™tre: tout en haut. Il y restera
jusqu'à la fin de sa carrière, même si les victoires se feront plus rares.Et
c'est sur le toit du Tour, au sommet de l'Iseran, que Bobet choisit de se
retirer pour de bon, en 1959.Tout un symbole.

Par sa volonté, Louison Bobet demeure un exemple dans l'histoire du
cyclisme. A force de travail, le rouleur moyen qu'il était s'est transformé en
vainqueur du prestigieux Grand Prix des Nations. Il n'était pas un sprinter
de premier ordre, mais il finit pourtant par gagner le Tour des Flandres et le
championnat du monde au finish. En montagne, il n'était pas Charly Gaul, et
c'est pourtant lui qui mit le Luxembourgeois à ses pieds dans les Alpes en

Une fois sa carrière de champion achevée, il mit son ambition, son sérieux
et sa volonté au service de sa reconversion, admirablement réussie. Bobet
cr√©e une cha√ģne de centres de thalassoth√©rapie, dont le d√©veloppement
survivra √† sa propre disparition, survenue bien trop t√īt, en 1983. 24 heures
après son 58e anniversaire, Louison Bobet rejoignait Coppi, Bartali et les
autres au paradis des dieux du Tour. Son voeu était exaucé...


Envoyer l'article à un(e) ami(e)


Voyages Kuoni
Cet été avec Kuoni, la
2e semaine pour 1‚ā¨
de plus!

Pour la rentrée : -30%
sur la sélection de

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††St. Etienne Bicycle posted by john on 9/12/2003 at 3:20:10 AM
THANKS EVERYONE for the information on my France-Loire..St. Etienne 10 speeder...I'm the guy with the original inquiry, and having rolled up many miles since 1975 on my sweet French ride, I do appreciate your input. I'm even going to get a translation of the French posting. This site truely brings out the best in the biking community...keep pumping those pedals

AGE / VALUE:†††sportiff bike shop posted by: Smitty on 9/10/2003 at 2:42:20 AM
Does anybody know if Sportiff bike shop in Chicago is still in busines and is it still full of NOS like was in the early 90's. If it is still open are they still in the same location.
I have another question. The Campy Victory group seems to be rare on Ebay. Does anybody know any production figures as compared to nouvo record . I do understand why it did not sell. It is just restyled 70's technology never the less it is stil good equipment. Please people Victory and Triomphe are NOT the same at all .

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††sportiff bike shop posted by Smitty on 9/10/2003 at 3:49:12 AM
I mean Sportif

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††sportiff bike shop posted by Rob on 9/10/2003 at 6:31:29 PM
Thanks Guys, for the info on Victory and Triomphe...I've got a few of these...all Victory I think...rear derailleurs, and a couple of front derailleurs...they were real cheap (around $10CDN each for the rear der.)...and now I can see why...but I think they were probably worth at least that...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††sportiff bike shop posted by Smitty on 9/11/2003 at 2:35:00 AM
Sounds like sportif has not changed a bit. It was like that the last time I was there in 91. Victory still is not bad,the bearings are from the earlier nuovo gran sport but over all finish was closer to nouvo record group. The bike shops that had it were giveing it away in the late 80s. The crankset had a 35 tooth low. The 35-52 tooth combo worked will for me you had to use the long fork changer and then I used the new then euclid Mt bike rear derailer with sycro levers and a regina 14-30 syncro freewheel
Thanks for the info

   Sportif posted by Oscar on 9/11/2003 at 3:18:04 AM
That's funny Dave. I've shopped there once or twice myself. I bought my wife's bike there, and a few parts. I do remember that they were a bit rude both times.

At least they're consistent.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††sportiff bike shop posted by Tom on 9/10/2003 at 12:55:33 PM
While I don't have any production figures, you can be certain that the production figures for Victory were very small relative to Nuovo/Super Record. The NR/SR group had a lifespan that was 5 times as long as Victory. NR/SR were also the prestigious, professional groups which had tremendous appeal to the manufacturers and consumers, while Victory was a mid line group, with much less appeal. Even during the heyday of NS/SR, Camapagnolo's low and mid end groups did not sell well. Finally, NR/SR was technologically competitve during its day. Victory was aesthetically and technologically outdated when it debuted in 1986. Shimano had perfected indexed shifting and combined it with Suntour's slant parallelogram design to bring precision shifting to the masses, at a cost effective price. Campagnolo was slow to respond to indexed shifting and when they did, the Syncro shifter worked poorly, primarily because they reverse engineered the shifter to existing derailleurs, whereas Shimano had engineered their components as a complete system from the very start. This virtually sewed up the mid range market for Shimano, at the time when Camapgnolo was trying to establish Victory. Conversely, NR/SR had dominated the upper end market, at the time when Shimano was trying to establish Dura Ace.
Campagnolo finally got it right with the new Chorus group and when the newly engineered Athana And Xenon groups arrive in 1991, Victory and Triomphe were history. To me, all these factors would indicate the Victory sales would be very small relative to NR/SR. If I had to hazard a guess, I'd say Victory was 2-3% of NR/SR production. Hopefully, someone else may have some actually figures.

   Victory/Triomphe posted by John E on 9/10/2003 at 3:01:57 PM
Also, the use of a proprietary 116mm BCD did not help sales of the Victory and Triomphe chainrings and cranks. I absolutely avoid Victory and Triomphe components when buying vintage Campag. parts, although I do have a Chorus hubset and crankset from the 1990s.

   RE:Victory/Triomphe posted by Dave on 9/10/2003 at 4:03:36 PM
Sportif is located in Chicago at Lawrence Ave. near Milwaukee,@Hiway 90 exit. My wife bought a bike there,(late 80's/early 90's) but had to purchase it to test ride it. They have probably the worst customer service of any Chicagoland LBS. One guy bought $650 worth of bike and several accessories and they wouldn't even hold the door open for him when he left,(2 years ago). Another woman, (this was at least 7/8 years ago) was shopping for a mixte frame bike and according to her they would lift those bikes up higher so she would not be able to see them as easily! If you know what you want, buy it and leave but I refuse to shop there myself,(they have a sister store in Oak Park).

FOR SALE:†††72 Opaque Blue Schwinn SuperSport. posted by: Gary Main on 9/10/2003 at 1:51:26 AM
can anyone use this bike cheap? its apparently a chicago made bike, with chrom moly fram in the continental style welds, it looks like a continental, but weighs less then one. is all original to the tape, not too scratched, no saddle with it. has schwinn driveline with alloy wheels, centerpull brakes and nerd flaps. will drop in nicely in any lightweight collection, or just start riding it. make a reasonable offer? come get it! lots of other schwinn lightweights to chose from as well.

   RE:FOR SALE:†††72 Opaque Blue Schwinn SuperSport. posted by schwinnderella on 9/10/2003 at 2:02:18 AM
Gary ,Where are you at?

   RE:RE:FOR SALE:†††72 Opaque Blue Schwinn SuperSport. posted by gary m on 9/10/2003 at 3:56:04 AM
Big rapids Michigan, bring a truck and a checkbook, i have a lot to sell.

   RE:††72 Opaque Blue Schwinn SuperSport. posted by Kevin K on 9/10/2003 at 7:20:48 PM
Amen Brother. Corvette and Chevette. Both vette's, big differences. Keep the Super Sport and enjoy it. A true piece of Schwinn, and American, history. Kevin K

   ††72 Opaque Blue Schwinn SuperSport. posted by John E on 9/10/2003 at 3:04:02 PM
The fillet-brazed CrMo Schwinns have quite a following here and elsewhere. Your SuperSport may look like a Continental, but it is much rarer, and the aluminum rims and CrMo frame make it significantly superior.

MISC:†††German Pinarello? posted by: Edward in Vancouver on 9/10/2003 at 1:37:15 AM
Thought I saw a nice 10 spd at the Valu-village, but it had a sold tag on it. Wierd, Headbadge and down tube said Pina rello, but there were red stickers on the seatpost tube that said "Deutsche Wert Arbeit, made in W.Gemany. A cheap-er '70's touring model, brazed-on plate between the seatstays for the brake, Huret Allvit, cottered crank, steel dimpled rims, cheap high flange hubs with giant wingnuts. Frame had been drilled for a bottle generator, a hole near the headtube with those clear plastic plugs-a factory job no doubt. But the brazing and paint finish were pretty good. Couldn't figure it out, a German-made-under license? German badge engineering? a quick lets-rip-off this-name-before they find-out? Anyone come across a German Pinarello?

   RE:MISC:†††German Pinarello? posted by Rob on 9/10/2003 at 3:29:12 AM
Hey Edward...small world...I've been watching that bike for half the summer...and was wondering exactly the same things as you... It started out at $39.95CDN and I noticed last Saturday it was marked down to $29.95CDN... I don't think it's much of a bike...rather heavy, kind of ugly, actually ...and a good bit of surface rust...I might have bought it for the curiosity value...if had dropped below $20...

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:†††German Pinarello? posted by Edward in Vancouver on 9/10/2003 at 8:59:05 PM
Thanks for the info, Steven. I've got a huge soft spot for Pinarello, my favorite bike is my Pinarello Gavia. Bought it in '95 in Singapore, of all places. To say I love this bike is an understatement.
In regards to the "German" Pinarello, the joker in the deck is the "Deutsche Wert Arbeit" decals. If it were'nt for them, it would just a be a run-of-the-mill tourer. The decals were water slides and appeared to be clear coated at the factory, as well they bear the same nicks and ageing as the regular decals. So like Sheer-luck Holmes would say, "when all intelligent solutions fail, what remains must be the truth". In this case some gung-ho German with access to waterslide decals stuck em on.
Steven, if you could point me out any websites with Pinarello info, I'd love it.

   RE:RE:MISC:†††German Pinarello? posted by Steven on 9/10/2003 at 5:08:54 AM
I used to live in Treviso and know Nanni Pinarello and his whole family and I can guarantee you that none of their bikes were ever officially produced in Germany. It sounds like somebody got their hands on some Pinarello decals and made themselves a Pinarello bike.

MISC:†††Random Posts posted by: Rob on 9/9/2003 at 5:09:31 PM
Gee...I see the posts are jumping all over the place again. Darn...is it something I'm doing?? It seems you have to glance through the whole thread to make sure you don't miss anything...

AGE / VALUE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by: Gralyn on 9/9/2003 at 4:42:54 PM
I actually found a Nishiki Olympic yesterday! It wasn't an Olympic 12....just an Olympic. It's the silver color, with the fancy lugs. It's old enough to have cottered cranks, high flange hubs, QR front and rear. And it has the large rear skip-tooth cogs. Randonieur bars, alloy stem. I think maybe SunTour shifters and ders. The drive-train wasn't rusted-up - still a lot of grease and lube on it. I pumped up the tires, checked everything, checked the brakes, and took it for a test ride. It rode good...and the gears shifted as smooth as silk. I was surprised at how well the gearing worked....especially for that old of technology....and especially for something that been sitting for a long, long time.
At that same place - they had a sears free spirit priced at $45.....the Nishiki was about 1/3 that price

   †††Nishiki Olympic posted by John E on 9/9/2003 at 7:30:55 PM
Your Oly sounds like a 1973, +/- a year or so. The old SunTours were the best wide-range derailleurs ever made, although I recall the Oly having Shimano.

... there is nothing wrong with 30-year-old road bikes :)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Tom on 9/10/2003 at 1:06:49 AM
Good memory John! My archives indicate that the 1973 Olympic was spec'd with Shimano Eagle derailleurs.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by JONathan on 9/10/2003 at 2:06:18 AM
What a boat! Mine is white with black trim. They are cool looking bikes; definitely retro. I'll check mine over and post to see if a date pops up. It is cottered cranks with huge chainwheel guard. All I know is that it weighs about like a "varsity". I'll see what it weighs, although there is a commercial-duty pressed steel rack on back.
If the "Free Spirit" was a 3-speed Austrian, that's what I'm looking for these days. My Nishki was $2 American! You done good. The paint is rhino hide tough.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Tom on 9/10/2003 at 8:09:23 PM
Hi John,

By co-incidence, I was working in our LBS during 1974-1975 prior to heading off to university. I also put in some time during the summers thereafter. Our LBS also carried Peugeot, but not Nishiki. Our Japanese brands were Sekine and Apollo. The other major brands were CCM, Gitane and Raleigh, though we had access to, and occassionally brought in Jeunet, Falcon, Chiorda, Speedwell, Hugh Porter and Cinelli.

Sorry, you are right, the 1975 ad was for the Custom Sports model - my mistake. However, my 1973 data sheets definitely says "Sports Cycle" and specifies Shimano Eagle derailleurs for this model. I don't know if this is a printer's error or maybe there was a supply problem getting enough Eagles for the actual bikes? Given that the Olympic had an Shimano Eagle derailleur, I am suprised that a lower model have SunTour, even it is was an Honor derailleur. I could understand a Shimano Lark, but not an Honor. Even though it was SunTour's basic derailleur, it outperformed the Shimano Eagle. I would have spec'd the Shimano on the bottom model and put the Honor on the Olympic.

I don't have a data sheet for the Road Compe. My 1973 Nishiki data sheets are for the Sports Cycle (Shimano Eagle), Olympic (Shimano Eagle), International (Sun Tour VGT), Competition (Sun Tour VGT) and Professional (Sun Tour V). Maybe I'm missing a couple of data sheets? By the way, the data sheets definitely say "Sun Tour", as opposed to Suntour or SunTour.

Heh! Heh! While researching this I re-discovered a picture of the Suntour mascot; a cartoon spaceman riding a bicyle, with the 8.8.8 on his chest and "SUNTOUR PRODUCTS" strung between the antennae of his helmet. I had totally forgotten about the little guy!

   RE:RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by JONathan on 9/10/2003 at 10:37:22 PM
OK, gents, I checked my "Olympic". Weight is 39# with fletscher rack; sawed off kickstand...now that is wierd. I guess they had a hacksaw, but not an adjustable wrench! Light set with generator. Say 38#. What a load to push.
Shimano "eagle" re. der. with "Thunderbird" fr. der. Shimano freewheel with steel, narrow ga. rims. KB "champion" bars with SR stem. Dia-Compe (Weinmann copy) cp's. Look like 610's.
Really long alloy rubber-jacketed stem shifters, also Shimano. These are fit for the job, too. No scrawny metal finger piching shifters on this model. Half-chrome forks. Seat is generic replacement. Not quite the mass of a clean "varsity", but close enough to be in the same ring.
This particular bike is a definite keeper. I dig that "thunderbird" snowplow looking front derailer. Huge chromed chainwheel guard is impressive, too. A classic bike for half the price of a box of deck screws!
Can't figure that out, still.
Except for the punched out lens on the front spotlight, everything is ready to go for a sunday afternoon cruise.
The brakes have the extension levers, too.

   RE:RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by JONathan on 9/10/2003 at 10:41:01 PM
Check the middle of this thread for my response...a random insertion?

   RE:RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by gralyn on 9/11/2003 at 2:59:07 AM
I checked: it has shimano shifters, shimano der.s (shimano eagle rear). Huge spoke guard. It will look really "classic" once it's cleaned up.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Gralyn on 9/10/2003 at 11:53:06 AM
No, the Free Spirit was a 10-speed....with all no-name components...no offense to anybody, but I have just always considered it a dept. store bike and have never considered it desirable. Honestly, if it had been priced at $5 I still would not have bought it. (now, if it is a very old sears bike - I would consider that)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Tom on 9/10/2003 at 1:42:59 PM
Looking through my old issues of Bicycling, I noticed some 1975 ads for the Nishiki Sports Cycle that clearly showed a Suntour slant parallelogram derailleur, though I can't tell the model. My 1973 specs indicated that both the Olympic and the lower Sports Cycle had Shimano Eagle derailleurs, so I'm wondering if both models had been re-spec'd to Suntour equipment for 1975?

   †††Nishiki Olympic posted by John E on 9/10/2003 at 3:11:07 PM
Hi Tom,

In 1972-1974, as a UCLA grad student,I worked part-time for Alan Goldsmith's Bikecology (now Supergo.com), a Peugeot and Nishiki dealership. At that time, the Oly was the only Nishiki with Shimano derailleurs and freewheels; the rest of the lineup used SunTour derailleurs and freewheels. Since Nishiki was absorbing much of SunTour's production, they may have had to spec. Shimano on the Olympic for supply reasons, or simply to further differentiate it from the Custom Sport. The only early 1970s Nishiki I really like is the Road Compe.

   RE:†††Nishiki Olympic posted by Gralyn on 9/10/2003 at 5:38:50 PM
OK, I'm going to check this evening and see exactly what ders and shifters this Olympic has. It could be Shimano....or it could be SunTour....