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Archived: Vintage Lightweights

MISC:   Meister Bikes posted by: Titlist on 9/24/2003 at 7:51:11 PM
somehow, Bergermeister is a somewhat known name, but I came across a Meister. One small unique mark, the Middleton's leather saddle I believe. White bicycle ; this was a tall bicycle, Meister decal badge.

AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by: Gralyn on 9/24/2003 at 11:18:31 AM
I was working on the Viscount - cleaning it's original components, etc. - I noticed the cranks were 171.5 mm length. I'm used to seeing 165's, 170's, 175's, etc.....but this is the first time I ever saw a 171.5!

It's currently set-up as fixed gear. I'm thinking of building it back to a multi-speed - and I'm getting some components ready for the conversion.....many of the original components (cranks, chainring, center pull brakes, etc. - I thought I would clean up and keep - in case I ever decide to sell it - or if I decide to put it back all original. But for now - I think I will use more modern componentry....maybe some 15 - 20 year-old stuff....or maybe some aero brake levers....somewhere along those lines.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by steve on 9/24/2003 at 3:23:34 PM
That's a "metric" measurement that really is an English one - 6 3/4". I once saw a ca. 1970 Ron Kitching catalog that offered several different patterns of cottered cranks in 6 1/2" and 6 3/4" lengths; i.e. 165mm and 171mm. The early Japanese cotterless cranks often are marked "171", meaning the same thing.
I used to have a "Schwinn" (likely Takagi) BMX crank from the mid-70s that was one of the most useful components I've ever had. It was nothing great: 171mm arms with a permanently-swaged 39t chainring. It served as the core of a number of very enjoyable and useful single/5-speed bikes. I wish I could find another one. (Hint, hint, hint to the watching eBay world!)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/24/2003 at 3:51:01 PM
Though I have not seen one personally, this is not a surprise, given that Lambert/Viscount was manufactrured by an English company. Most English companies designed and manufactured their cranksets using English measurements. The most common crankarm lengths were 6-1/2" & 6-3/4". These are the equivalent of 165.1 mm and 171.5, mm respectively. Once metric measurement started to gain a foothold in the industry, the cranks' English measurements were probably just changed to the equivalent metric measurement. This can be accomplished by a new insert in the tool, which is much cheaper than developing new tooling for a new length of crankarm.

While 165mm and 170mm were the most common metric length cranks during the 1970's boom period, several top end models were also available in 172.5mm, 175mm and 180mm. The later sizes became more common in the 1980's when the industry started to accept the advantages of proportional sizing of bicycle components, relative to frame size.

Interestingly, during the 1970's some manufacturers purposely put 165mm cranks on their entry level lightweights. This was an attempt to get the customer to opt for a more expensive (read higher profit) model, which employed a 170mm crank. Company reps would instruct the salesperson to have the customer pay attention to how they could use a higher gear and go faster with the higher end model. The customer attributed this to the "better quality" of the higher priced model, not realizing that it was in fact due to the extra leverage of longer crankarms.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by JONathan on 9/24/2003 at 4:25:25 PM
Hey tom, that was some interesting information you gave about the cranks.
Why would the English companies want to change their tooling? As long as the crank has a standard
bore for the spindle and pedal, who but the most most ardent fan would notice the difference between a 171.5mm and 170mm?
I can't tell the difference between a 165mm and a 170mm, excpet while cornering hard with a bike that has a significant BB-drop.
One subtle difference is the physiological effect on the knee-joints (greater throw) and on the ankles (greater pedal velocity).
Again, it appears to me that unless there was a compromise condition or continuous high revs., the difference is not mainfest.
Compensation through gearing seems to be easy enough given the wide selection of chainrings and freewheel cogs that are available, in addition to superior range of the Japanese derailers that started in the '70's.
One other thing...biking is a game of mm's, too, the steerage clearance of the front wheel is increased with shorter cranks for those with steep head-tubes and small rake (trail) and big feet, like me.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Dave on 9/24/2003 at 7:24:03 PM
I'm with you , Jonathan , on that big feet issue. I can't use large panniers because my heels hit them and 165mm is the ideal size for fixed gear bikes. I can use 170's on them but 175's were a big mistake I made on my first fixie. Cornering had become a scary proposition until I switched to the shorter ones.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by JONathan on 9/24/2003 at 9:46:44 PM
At the other extreme, I was amazed by what blew by yesterday.
I didn't get a make, but there was no decal visible on this stealty
flat black frame the guy rode. This is a long straightaway section, I'd guess 30mph for him. At the light, I came up even and saw the cranks were real long, thin and shiny like titanium maybe.
Not Al alloy from appearance. He jumped out on green and I trailed long enough to see the cranks were practically hitting blacktop!
Fast bike and this guy was no commuter from the garb spare tire in back pouch of his jersey. When he corners hard I bet the cranks are // to ground.
Yeah, size 12 clumpers are tough on rear panniers. The Cannondales are my best pans, but lots of hits have made a nice scuff on the fronts. The Maddens are no problem, but they're not framed panniers.
The cranks I saw yesterday coming down the home stretch would have scraped the Cannondales all by themselves, maybe 185mm?

   crank length posted by John E on 9/24/2003 at 10:03:21 PM
JONathan is right about crank length and front wheel clearance. Even with 165mm Sugino cranks, my UO-8 has a bit of toe-to-tyre overlap, because I use a Japanese fork instead of the highly-raked original. In practice, this is a non-issue, even though I am sure the CPSC would want to confiscate this bike to protect me from myself!

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Rob on 9/24/2003 at 10:39:34 PM
Interesting stuff...a 170 crank over a 165 gives 3% more leverage, which will translate into more force per revolution, which will, based on the same cadence, equal more speed...but would this not be offset in part by the need for more input by the rider? And, of course, a lower gear might be more beneficial...I guess what I'm trying to say is, just how beneficial is this extra 3%? ...is it that significant or is the advantage related to a small incremental edge (soemwhat less than 3%) that over enough miles could make the difference between winning and losing a race?....I guess I could go find a book about it...:)...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/25/2003 at 2:33:20 AM
Rob, ultimately, the speed of a bicycle is determined by the horsepower generated at the crank spindle. There are three factors that determine this horsepower; 1) the force at the pedals, 2) the length of the crankarm, 3) the rpm of the crankset. Increasing any one of these three and holding the others constant, will result in increased horsepower. Any given rider has a maximum horsepower output. If he maintains the same gearing and cadence, a 3% increase in crankarm length (i.e. 170mm - 175mm) will produce the same speed with 3% less force at the pedal. The only way preserve this loss with the shorter crankarm, would be to spin 3% faster, which could only be achieved with a smaller gear. The catch is that there will be no net difference to the rider. The energy expenditure will be the same in both cases.

JONathan, you are not alone. Most riders cannot detect differences in crank length, unless it is pointed out to them. However suggestion is a powerful thing. If you tell a person he should be able to feel a difference, one of four things will happen;
1) He actually feels the difference
2) He thinks he feels the difference, and convinces himself that he does.
3) He doesn't feel the difference, but won't admit it, so as not appear ignorant.
4) He doesn't feel the difference and admits it.
Of the above scenarios, numbers 2 & 3 are the most likely to occur and it's something that salespeople love to prey upon. I despised the crank length ploy and preferred to sell the higher bicycle base on its own merits.

Regarding the wheel and toeclip overlap, I cannot say that I have ever experienced it on any of my bicycles. Of course, I am the 98th percentile, when it comes to frame geometry. A 56cm x 56cm, with a 72.5 degree seat tube. However, I can appreciate heel clearance difficulties, especially on more modern bicycles with shorter chainstays. I have a 650C time trial bike with ultra short, 37 cm chainstays. Sometimes I kick the derailleur body with my heel and cause it to shift unexpectedly! I generally see toe overlap situations only on small bicycles, with very short top tubes.

Those pencil-thin cranks you saw sound like a pair of the Cook Bros. cranks. The arms are about as thick as those on a steel cottered crank, but they are round/oval in profile. The arms have a very noticeable bulge at the top and bottom where the spindle and pedals fasten. Very nice stuff. Very light weight.

Regarding the variations in crank length, it stems from a desire to maintain both optimum weight distribution and deliver maximum force to the pedals. Most manufacturers design bicycles to try to achieve a 45/55 (fore/aft) weight distribution, with rider. It is common belief that this distribution will optimize the centre of gravity for the best handling characteristics. With the saddle in a position to achieve this balance, the crankarm length is then selected so that the tibial tuberosity (the bump at the top of the shinbone, just below the knee) is directly over the pedal spindle, when the crankarm is at the 3 o’clock position. Most people believe that this position will provide maximum force to the pedal. In actuality, this fitting process is usually played out in the opposite direction. A crankarm is usually selected on the basis on a persons leg or thigh length. The knee over the pedal position is then established by shifting the saddle back or forth. This approach compromises the weight distribution, but will give satisfactory results for most riders. Adjustment to crankarm length can be made depending on the cyclist’s riding style. Sprinters and spinners may prefer shorter cranks that put the tibial tuberosity in front of the spindle, while time trialists, mountain bikers, and long distance riders may opt for longer arms that place the tibial tuberosity behind the pedal spindle. Please note that some knowledgeable cyclists hold the above viewpoint in disdain. However, it is the most commonly accepted viewpoint.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Gralyn on 9/25/2003 at 2:52:19 AM
I don't think I can fell the difference between say, 165's and 170's. But, I bet I will notice the difference between a 165 and a 175.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by JONathan on 9/25/2003 at 3:40:46 AM
Tom, your analysis is superb. I think I'm a #4 respondent. I really can't tell the difference in a "blind" test, however, I would notice the difference on my Raleigh "Technium" and Specialized "allex SE" while working slow speed weaseling.
Thanks for the information about those interesting cranks. They were exactly as you described, as I recall. That guy was not playing around. The cars were passing him very slowly in a 35 mph zone!
Funny thing, the bike did not have any glitter or showiness. Pretty cool ride. He got off like a motorcycle...standing on the cranks.
Thanks, JONathan

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Titlist on 9/25/2003 at 3:51:44 AM
I can turn the front wheel on my Star Japanese bike and it can touch my toe clips. It is also, a long top tube. One of these joker "consumeristic" (read Ken Kifer's cycling in the 80s history essay, if you want to know what that means! I think, Mr. Kifer, don't mean to be dramatic here, but is going to become like a prophet, poet, something of that nature for cyclists)cyclists was trying to catch up with me on his Bianchi Eros; while I carried about 20 pounds of cargo. I need to get a mirror again for another bike, this Star. Another Clown, consumeristic cyclist, tried to catch up, on another gazillion dollar bike, on the Mendota Bridge, about a half mile bridge, he did finally at the end, when I am braking, going around a bunch of people including children, taking a look at the view there, and too, at the end of the bridge, there is an intersection of the bike/walking path, marked with a stop sign, where 9 out of 10 times, no one is going to be there, but at even low rates of speed, could cause quite a collision there if one happened. This catching up and rolling by, just another trick, sometimes, I think, to humiliate or hassle one, but I just go on with the flow.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by JONathan on 9/25/2003 at 4:59:49 AM
Rob, I wonder if the force applied to the spindle isn't larger than 3% in the 170's.
We're talking "MAD"...Mass x Acceleration x Distance. I really have no inclination to
do tha math, but I know that acceleration is a square function of time. Well at the velocities being relatively low, it can be considered linear, I presume.
The 3% figure sounds about like what would be difficult to observe in any subjective way.
Titlist, you know the riders who can really make use of the bikes you're talking about are very observant of safe riding, I have noticed. You can tell by how effortless they wiff on by when the conditions are clear.
A shop nearby caters to a strong contingent of racers and I go right by their "training" route on the expressway (when I choose that route) and I can say that they never "air-brush" me going by. If we traded bikes for a few miles, they would still pass me.
So I guess it depends on who has something to prove and who has already proved it as to what kind of experience you get sharing the blacktop. I'm talking road bikes, not MTB's.
Ride long and prosper.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/25/2003 at 12:08:58 PM
JONathan and Rob, back in 1977 there was a study done on the effect of crank arm length. Given a set gear and speed, the force at the pedal was measured using both 170mm & 175mm cranks. The tests results showed that the 170mm crankarms required extra force at the pedal. Results varied from +2.89%, to +3.05%, with an average difference of +2.936% The actual difference in length between a 175mm and 170mm crankarm is 2.941%. Given variance due to experimental error, this enough proof to say that the difference in force at the pedal spindle is directly related to the difference in crankarm length.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Dave on 9/25/2003 at 2:46:04 PM
Tom , I have your 98th percentile for framesize except I have long arms and size 12 feet like Jonathan. I like 175 cranks but 170's do suffice for me. I now have this very old British racing bike with cottered 165.1mm crankarms, and I still want to try riding it in a Time-trail either this year or next. The best results I've had were with 175mm cranks arms but I do not plan to change out parts on this bike, other than using a time trial handlebar,stem and brakelever set that I removed off of a Cannondale I no longer have. I'll be using the original cranks and 27" wheels,(27"x1" tires) I guess this thread would be a good test of this theory. The bike will be a 6-speed and the courses here are all flat.

   cranky as ever posted by Ken on 9/25/2003 at 4:32:58 PM
long thread already- two things. 1) SR cranks spec'd on early Fujis were 171.5.
2) crank length is a hundred-year-old debate. Want something to read? http://cranklength.info/
I also like http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/fitting.htm -Peter, like Sheldon, has his share of Yankee...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Rob on 9/25/2003 at 5:28:41 PM
Another interesting thread...I guess it's getting a bit long...I think I'm starting to get brain fade on this topic, but if there is a 3%+/- extra effort required for a 175 crank v. 170, is the advantage then related to ergonomics (ie proper knee alignment), which then allows a more efficient and consistent effort over time? I think I may be getting hung up think the crank is a lever, but it's not, it's actually more like a gear...thelonger the crank the more distance you'll get, over time, of course, for the same force input...also picking up on JONathan's comments on mass...there may also be a flywheel effect, with force and mass (i.e., pedal and extra crank length) being further away from the spindle....this would help to smooth out the cadence...Hmmm...anyway, as I ride along I try to think about these things...think about what is actually going on with my inputs and the bike's reaction...my daily commute is excellent for this, as I usually take the same route...lately my focus has been on cadence...it's being improving and I'm definitely seeing results...faster times on my commute and less leg fatigue....Lots of fun...:)...

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Viscount posted by Keith on 9/25/2003 at 6:08:53 PM
I've never encountered the use of crank length as a selling tool. I've always thought of crank length as just another part of bike fit, i.e., shorter cranks for shorter riders, longer cranks for taller riders, with exceptions like 165s being pretty standard for track bikes. I don't know if studies have ever been done on the fit aspect to establish an optimum length crank for a given leg length -- I imagine it simply evolved over the years. I have bikes with 165, 170, 172.5 and 175 cranks. Despite T-Mar's observation, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that I feel the effect of pedaling the 175 after a hilly century -- I believe it causes more stress on my knees as the peak position of the downstroke is slightly higher and the knee is therefore more bent than it is with shorter cranks. For some reason BMX bikes offer a huge range of sizes -- from 150 to 180mm. Sloan's Complete Book of Bicycling has charts that show the effect of crank length on the effective gear ratio. Sheldon Brown uses gain ratio which takes crank length into account. http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gain.html

AGE / VALUE:   Sekine Value posted by: Ned Fellers on 9/23/2003 at 4:14:29 PM
Just out of my curious nature...can anyone out there speak to the relative value of my old, 27 year plus I think Sekine racing bike? Some scratches on frame...don't know if it was the version made in Japan or Canada, someone a long time ago said this reflected relative value...if someone is interested, I have no plans to keep it.

Thanks in advance for any information.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Sekine Value posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/23/2003 at 7:40:35 PM
While Sekine was a excellent bicycle, they have relatively poor resale value. They were probably the best selling bicycle in Canada during the mid-seventies, outside of CCM. Consequently, there are far too many of them available to entice good prices. Conversely, in the USA, they were far less widely distributed and are not well known to bring good prices. With Sekine, it is feast or famine regarding availability.

Typically, average condition models with the cottered or swaged, cotterless cranks bring $20-$30 CDN. Very good condition might double that price.

Many Sekine models indicate the country of origin at the base of the seat tube decal. There are also some differences in the Sekine downtube decal and, in some cases, colour. In my experience, the Japanese models do not bring an appreciably higher value.

If you have pictures, I would be glad to help identify the model, its country of origin and fair value.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by: Tristan on 9/23/2003 at 2:57:35 PM
Hej! I recently got a "Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212" racing bike as a gift. The gear system is manufactured by Suntour AR and the breaks by Dia Compe 500. Does anybody has any informations about this bike? How old is it. Is it any good? How much worth was it back then, how much worth is it today? Thanks, Tristan

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by JONathan on 9/23/2003 at 4:25:14 PM
I am not fami;iar with that model, but if the SunTour Ar derailer was OE, I would say about early '80's.
I have an Ar on a Schwinn "traveler", 1983. I do know about Fuji bikes to some degree, specifically the Team Fuji.
They made only quality machines...no junky bikes. If the frame is solid, it is worth keeping, IMHO. The majority of Fuji builts
that I see have considerable wear and tear, which is a good sign dependability in a bike. Run, run, and run. The double-butted tubes
are a sign, too, of a higher grade machine. Tange is good stuff if that what you have. Pretty nice gift, if you ask me. Gifts are usually in good condition, becuase most people
(speaking an opinion) would not male a gift out of a defective item. Although I have gotten junk as a gift when I asked; "Do you want that bike"?, or "If it's too much trouble for you to fix,...I can use it", etc.
I say, why pay more, when you can get just a better bike for a lot less bucks.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by JONathan on 9/23/2003 at 4:36:22 PM
I meant; "make" a gift. Got to dump this keyboard!
BTW, there are exceptions, so check it over anyway, just to be sure.
I have gotten gifts that had problems unknown to the giver, as they wouldn't know what a "problem" was on a bike
unless they couldn't pedal or stop.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by Tristan on 9/23/2003 at 6:33:42 PM
hej JONathan!
thanks for the information. yeah - the bike is in great condition. it seems, it has been used maybe 20 times.
i cleaned it today and adjusted the gears etc. it is just great. except the weight... and the gear shifting system, which are not really uptodate... but since i am just starting with race byceling - it is just perfect for the start, i guess. better then invensting a thousand bucks and not to know, if i will stick to it..

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by JONathan on 9/23/2003 at 7:29:29 PM
Good deal. I used to course the Jedediah Smith Mem. Trail along the Amer. R. near Sacramento where there are some serious road racers who train along the route...obeying the speed limits of course!
Well, I was all set get a fancy road bike, but after a Wheelman imparted that my bike was great for training runs, I decided to keep the Maino (It.) road bike and if I got a TOL road racer, it would be reserved for races. Well, I realized that my physique precluded road racing as a serious pursuit, so I never have gotten that "new" bike.
However, I love riding the lightweights for recreation and I have discovered these vintage craft, like the Fuji you have, are extremely comfortable for long rides and they can move out pretty decent on the level. Hills are the domain of the 18# bikes, they rule supreme. With my Team Fuji, I keep up with the rec. riders on 2K$ bikes on the flat...especially in a headwind. I get beat trying to haul the hills, but part of it is that my riding pals are all under 160#, some less than 130#'s!
Glad you pulled a gem out of mothballs. Campy wheels helped my cause considerably, which is why these bikes are great. You can pay next to nothing for the frames and then sink a couple c's into componentry and you end up with a fantastic ride.
Cheers, JONathan

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by Darryl on 9/24/2003 at 2:33:01 PM
The top tube(frame) should have a model "name" on it. Maybe on the down tube. With a model I can tell you a lot about your bike if its from the period 1983 - 1991.

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Fuji Valite Double Butted Tubing 212 posted by a regular poster to this board on 9/24/2003 at 7:39:15 PM
yes, John, that may be so, that lighweight sticker has been on the bike a long time.

   Valite frames posted by gary m on 9/25/2003 at 1:07:20 AM
Valite was "in" when i was starting at the first bike shop i worked in, and having a few valites out back, i gotta tell ya, all my lightweight schwinns will be long gone in the dumpsters before my early Fuji bikes go anywhere. with the alloy wheels and mid-entry level Sun Tour equipment, they are just a ton nicer bike then any of the varsinsentals ever made. The Panasonic Schwinns in the higher end are about the same caliber. Back then light was in just like now, BUT light didnt last for squat, now isnt much different, the lighter the less it lasts it seems. I expect i will be riding my World Voyageur a Long time. OR my Fuji Gran Tour SE.

AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM posted by: Mike Hoffman on 9/23/2003 at 3:23:34 AM
Hello Everyone,
I am looking at a Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM. I was wondering if anyone had any info about these bikes.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM posted by JONathan on 9/23/2003 at 7:52:35 AM
Let me guess. It's white. I have one that is 14 speeds and has the brake cables roved through the top tube. Very fast bike...by my standard for speed. I'm used to commuters like Schwinn "traveler".
The "TB" stnads for thermal bonded which I guess is a high tech term for shrink-to-fit. Top-tube has small lettering decal with "olympian" across either side.
Down-tube has "Raleigh Technium". Badge has "Raleigh-USA" on it. I really like the ride. My first aluminum bike! Got it for a what a pizza costs. Hey, skip a lunch, get a real nice ride; that's how it works, incredible as it may seem.
For ride, I would say that a skilled racer could get a lot going with it. I mash around the local bikepath on it and I can say it shifts real nice. Down-tube braze-on shifters. If yours is like the one I have, it is a keeper. I have read about all kinds of "techniums" ("technia"?) that have popped up over the years.
Some good, some not so, but this one is a well designed unit, IMHO. More important, it is very interesting. Those "spuds" have to go. I am too old-school, I guess.
I think Raleigh-USA got it right with this one.
BTW, I have no idea about durability. So far, so good. The previous owner was either a gifted rider, or they hardly rode it; as the frame is without a scratch.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM posted by Gralyn on 9/23/2003 at 2:00:56 PM
I had a Raleigh Technium - Aluminum - beautiful condition - a very nice ride! I sold it. But, I still have it's twin brother - though it has a few more scratches on it - it still looks pretty good. I currently have it set-up as a single-speed fixed-gear. That Aluminum makes for a very lightweight fixed-gear bike!!!!

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM posted by Dave on 9/23/2003 at 4:03:30 PM
I have a Raleigh Super Course 1999 model that I built up from a frame made just like the Technium,(Aluminum main tubing bonded to cromoly stays). It has a great ride, I rode it on all 4 PBP Brevets and on PBP in France,(half way). The only quibble are the downtube shifter bosses, I've had to glue the right side one back on twice but is seems to be ok now. With a aluminum fork and Mavic wheels the bike weighs in @22 lbs.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM posted by Mike on 9/27/2003 at 11:09:38 PM
First of all, thanks for the info. I bought the Raleigh and it is somewhere between here and Florida at the moment. This will be my first Aluminum bike. Later

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Raleigh OLYMPIAN 6061TB TECHNIUM posted by Greg on 9/30/2006 at 2:47:57 PM
Great lightweight vintage bike. I have the all black brother of this bike...a 1990s Raleigh Olympian 6061TB Technium (USA made) road bike (black w/ red & white graphics). Mine has a few cosmetic scratches as one might expect but nothing you can see without a close inspection. I just replaced brake calipers, all cables/housings, tires and bar wraps. My bike also has Scott aerobars and Shimano clipless pedals. This is an extra bike of mine.... that I am thinking of selling. Is Ebay a good place to sell? Anyone looking for one of these? (pics available)

MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by: Hoss on 9/22/2003 at 11:38:04 PM

Thought I'd urge those interested, there is an excellent issue of Velo News out right now, with Mario Cippolini, winner of last years championship, on the cover. Why this is good; is it is in both English and French. Furthermore, there are articles on Steve Bauer, believe, the magazine states he helped design the track. The magazine reads a bit more like a program to a sports event, but nonethe less is an excellent read.

On the topic of Canada, I am just chiming in that Norcos are available at some stores in the USA.

   RE:MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by Titlist on 9/25/2003 at 12:18:28 AM
I guess, Canada, is so big, this is a bit off topic, from Mapquest, checking directions, 900 miles to Hamilton; 450 miles to Winnipeg, where some of my ol' racing buddies, promised they would give me a lift if I made it that far. I have seen Norco Mountain Bikes around. $600.

I've got to get it off my chest, I watched Mountain Biking on OLN and I read in bicycling, or maybe it's mountain biking counterpart, an article showing two bikes, saying you are looking at $15,000 worth of equipment on all the bikes. Then, I watched that OLN, world class Mountain Cyclists, pushing their bikes up through the mud on a lot of one track. Made me think, I could do that on my humble cycle.

   RE:RE:MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by Titlist on 9/25/2003 at 12:50:03 AM
Off topic again, quite a few northerners here, I got about 12 hours to Winnipeg, 111 hours really, to Anchorage out of curiousity?? Can that be real? I guess, mapquest, must be www.mapquest.com.Makes me wonder!

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by Dennis on 9/25/2003 at 1:31:17 AM
The roads to Canada are largely mountainous, through the rockies, and get covered with snow, it takes almost as long as a hundred hours, to go from Winnipeg to Anchorage.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by Dave on 9/25/2003 at 6:58:24 PM
With the USSR dissolving, me thinx, Canada must be the largest country in the world now.

   RE:MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by Rob on 9/25/2003 at 9:11:39 PM
FWIW...Russia without the rest of the former Soviet Union is still the largest by a wide margin...then Canada, the US and China in that order, which are all pretty close...then Brazil and Australia...those are the really big countries sizewise:


   RE:RE:MISC:   Velo News Hamilton Cycling World Championship posted by Titlist_ Tom on 9/26/2003 at 3:41:30 AM
Thanks Rob, I get into worldly affairs, one small off topic note, I saw one world cup, up close, have closely followed since '86, though saw it some before then, it may not be the men's world cup, and I think, the last one, in Korea Japan, was too flawed in referee decisions, to be classic, but some of the Women's World Cup games going on, some in Foxboro I think, are greatly entertaining. Good Luck to all teams. I've got to think, not being Yankee arrogant, the US is going to take it, after todays' convincing game. Just my 2 cents, sorry to all, if this is too off topic. Won't be a repeat of this. In redeeming value, gee, a lot of the cycling events, and the interest in cycles of different countries, gives it an int'l flavour.

WANTED:   Suntour accushift levers posted by: Ken on 9/22/2003 at 7:56:09 PM
Seeking six- or seven-speed Accushift levers- clamp-on preferred but braze-on ok. No luck with an earlier post on General FS/Wanted... Anybody got some lying around? Yellowjersey has 'em new for 29.95, but with nothing else new on the bike (a low-end Panasonic), I'd prefer to find used, and maybe to swap something you could use.

   RE:WANTED:   Suntour accushift levers posted by Gralyn on 9/22/2003 at 8:15:24 PM
I'm thinking the only set I have is the one that came originally on my Lotus 3000R - and it's still on there. But I may have some (for the brazed-on fittings) for 6-speed. I will check this evening and see.

   RE:WANTED:   Suntour accushift levers posted by Dave on 9/22/2003 at 8:39:31 PM
I may also have a braze on 6-speed I'll get back tomorrow about that

AGE / VALUE:   dawes racer posted by: jay on 9/22/2003 at 6:42:56 PM
Hello there, i'm trying to find out some information on a bike i've just bought. Its in a ramshackle state so any info would be appreciated. It is a 60's dawes racer, with a sturmey 4 speed hub plus 2 cogs on the back (making it 8 speed) frame number hs2106. Anyone know anything? cheers, jay

      dawes racer posted by John E on 9/23/2003 at 1:25:11 AM
With the Sturmey 4-speed and the hybrid derailleur conversion kit, it sure sounds like a keeper to me! Check the Sturmey hub shell for a date code. Is the 2-speed a Cyclo? What about the rear derailleur? I presume it has cottered cranks; I am guessing mid-1950s.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   dawes racer posted by jay on 9/23/2003 at 10:04:30 PM
hello again, the bike has the following bits and pieces:

1964 FOUR speed Sturmey Archer hub with a second sprocket on it with a SVELTO rear derailler making it an eight speed
C/Set = Chater Lea chainset
Weinmann 750, Vainqueur 999 centre pull brakes.
Mudguards = Bluemels popular mudguards.
Saddle = Brooks B15 Leather saddle

I guess that makes it a 60's bike, but its seeming impossible to identify it any further than that. Has someone out there got a 60's dawes dealers manual that they can have a quick look in? Cheers, jay

    dawes racer posted by John E on 9/24/2003 at 3:45:41 AM
Of course, if that S/A hub is original, we can presume that the frame was made in 1964 +/- 1 year or so. My 1959 Capo came with Weinmann Vainqueur 999s, which I think were first introduced a year or two earlier. If the brakes are original, they would rule out a mid-1950s or earlier build date. Your Dawes sounds like a rather late rendition of the classic 1950s British club racer, which typically had epicyclic internal gears instead of the derailleurs of sunnier and drier France and Italy. Very nice find!

   RE: dawes racer posted by Dave on 9/24/2003 at 2:36:56 PM
Very nice! I have a '72 French Mercier with the original Svelto rear derailler & Huret drivetrain, that derailler is a metal version of the lightest rear derailler,(or so I've read), ever made , the Huret Jubilee. It shifts well and is very sturdy.

AGE / VALUE:   Campagnolo catalog posted by: Chris on 9/22/2003 at 5:11:40 PM
Well, the used bookstore had some new lady in charge and the whole place was all ajumble with things not where they used to be.
Nobody could find anything. Then 1 second after I find this Campagnolo catalog she says:
I have to ask you to leave. I have to go to the bathroom and you can't stay in here.
Ok, so I left and went and got a juice and came back.
She kept on apologising and this had never happened to me before.
The catalog, the 1984 suppliment showing most all Campy offered was.......

Found some other literature that was also underpriced.
Found another article from way back when that is written by our pal Sheldon Brown!
I was afraid she was going to close up shop for the day and not let me but the catalog but rest assured, I have it.

What is this worth?
I have been holding up parts next to the book and trying to figure out what all I have.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Campagnolo catalog posted by Chris on 9/22/2003 at 5:22:30 PM
I wanted to say something like:
"Oh my god, what have you done to the store! I can't find anything!"
but I kept quiet.

It was upsetting. A used bookstore is supposed to be the same. Fine and wonderful if they get in new arrivals but to re- arrange the whole place?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Campagnolo catalog posted by Darryl on 9/24/2003 at 2:42:21 PM
Your catalog is worth about $10 - $15 to someone interested in Campy. I recently bought Campy catalogs 11 thru 18 (1951 thru 1984)for $100.00. These are available.

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Old Schwinn 13/16" steerer--OK to bore out? posted by: Brent on 9/22/2003 at 4:21:00 PM
I have a very nice Schwinn Sports Tourer. The 1" OD steerer tube requires a 13/16" stem instead of the standard 7/8" stem because the walls of the steerer tube are thicker than standard. Would it be safe to bore the tube out to 7/8" so that I can put on a higher, longer 7/8" stem? Selection of 13/16" stem is very poor. I've already made some modifications to the bike, changing the terrible Campy Gran Tourismo derailleur to a great shifting Suntour, changing the 14-34 5 speed freewheel to a Suntour ultra 6 14-30, using a modern chain, and new tires. Preserving the bike is not important to me. Riding safely and comfortably is. Other option is to buy a new fork, but I prefer the style of the old one with the Chromed crown and tips.

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Old Schwinn 13/16 posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/23/2003 at 12:47:38 PM
The answer to your question lies with the composition of the steerer tube. A 1" O.D. steerer tube is the most common size and manufacturers use them with stems up to 7/8" (22.2 mm) diameter. Initially this would lead one to think that it would be safe to ream out the steerer. However, thinner steerers are usually made out of a high strength chrominum-molybdenum steel (or other suitable high strength steel). In all probability, your thicker steerer is likely made from a lower strength, carbon steel. The extra strength is obtained via the extra material in the wall thickness. The thick, low carbon steerer tube is cheaper than the thin, CrMo, steerer tube and this is why it is common on the low end and department store bicycles. I don't think you would find anybody who would guarrantee that it would be safe to enlarge the steerer.

Some may argue that the low end English and Italian bicylcles use larger diameter stems in 1" steerer and that they use carbon steel in their frames. While this is true, the critical question is, is it a low carbon steerer? Without knowing the actual composition of the steerer on these bicycles, your question cannot safely be answered.

The bottom line is that you MAY be able to ream it out and not have problem, but I would NOT advise you to do so. To be absolutely sure, I suggest you contact Schwinn. However, you may want to check out some low end mountain stems. They may provide you suffiicent rise, extension and the diameter you require. This ATB look is fairly common of new road bikes with threadless forks, so it will not look too out of place.

By the way, the 13/16" stem is actually 0.833" (21.15 mm). This is 0.020" (0.5 mm) larger than a true 13/16". This is just enough of a difference that you wouldn't to able to cinch the stem, if you were having someone build a custom stem based on a true 13/16" diameter.

AGE / VALUE:   Shurman rims and Samir Saminov???? posted by: Gralyn on 9/22/2003 at 3:36:27 PM
I had an odd ....and I think this is close to it: Samir...Saminov...something like that - made in France, I think....but I had an odd on....on the front....and I also had another bike with an odd Shurman, made in Germany - on the rear. Well, I found a bike that had a Samir on the rear, and a Shurman on the front.....so now, I have the complete sets. The Samir's have the dimples on the sides of the rim - just like the old rigida's.

Is anyone familiar with the Shurman, made in Germany rims? Are they any good? They seem a little heavy. I had never heard of these before.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Shurman rims and Samir Saminov???? posted by Rob on 9/22/2003 at 5:12:18 PM
Yes...Schurmann (sp?) rims...I have several of them...an early '80's Raleigh (model unknown) has them, and they seem to be excellent...I think they are original; the Raleigh is, I'm pretty sure, from their CDN plant. I rode this bike most of the winter of 2001-2002, lots of rain and even a day with about 4 inches of fresh snow...they still have no rust. I have a few others attached to other finds (I can't remember at the moment) and they are all good. I view these rims as definite keepers (along with Araya steel rims, of which I have several, all in excellent condition).

I'd like hear what others have to say aboaut these obviously higher quality steel rims. I also have steel rims attached to a couple of late '60's Carltons , which seem to be excellent, though on one bike there is some very light, spotty surface rust...I'm thinking these rims might be Dunlop??? If the steel rims seem high quality, my approach is to hang on to them...

VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by: Randy on 9/22/2003 at 2:30:32 PM
Last week turned out to be quite remarkable when it comes to finding vintage lightweight bicycles.

Thursday afternoon produced an Italian made Chiorda, complete with chrome lugs and Campy Derailleurs and controls. The Campagnolo equipped bicycle had been hiding in the basement of a used furniture store. And that was just the beginning…

Saturday’s plan included going to yard sales with my grandson, followed by a few hours at the local police auction. With high hopes, the boy and I set out to see what our fair city had to offer this close to the cold weather.

After a few stops without much luck we arrived at a high school collective yard sale. At first glance, all that was offered was a relatively small woman’s bike. Closer inspection revealed a beautiful Bianchi W Strada in all but perfect condition. The handlebars had been changed out and, sad to say, the down tube braze ons had been sawed off. The rest of the bike was perfect and for the three dollar asking price, how could a fellow go wrong? The bicycle had seen little or no use to speak of. The “Ambrosia” stickers were still on the 700c wheel rims and the 700c X 35 tires were brand new.

An hour and a half later. and at the last yard sale planned for the day, we walked into vintage lightweight heaven. There, in a fellows back yard, were about fifteen old ten and twelve speeds in varying stages of repair. For fifteen bucks the boy and I picked up a Raleigh Record(early seventies at best) and a French made Peugeot PU9 Challenger. The Raleigh was in excellent condition while the Peugeot requires some work. I took the Raleigh for a ride already.

While paying for the two bicycles, I asked if the seller had any other bicycles that he might be selling. The question led us into his garage where several more lightweights were hanging from rafter hooks. My eyes were immediately drawn to a Bianchi…

Well, to make a long and interesting story short, I spent fifteen dollars and walked out with a Campagnolo equipped Bianchi Rekord 748, sans wheels. The bike was good cosmetically except for some paint fading on top of some of the tubes. Even the decals were in pretty good condition. Mechanically, the bottom bracket was shot, however; the Bianchi Strada had all of the components required to complete the Rekord except for the bottom bracket. Isn’t it great when coincidence compliments luck?

Forty-five minutes later, a three-dollar bid at the police auction produced a second Raleigh Record in very good condition. What a neat day!

   Wow! posted by John E on 9/22/2003 at 2:35:01 PM
You certainly struck the Mother Lode!

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by Gralyn on 9/22/2003 at 3:36:12 PM
Hmmmm.....I'm going to have to check out a police auction one of these days. My only thoughts of auctions are the ones I see in my area: anytime there's an auction for an estate.....if it's taking place between you and where you want to go....you have better find an alternate route - because of the vast mob of people. I can only recall one police auction in my area years ago - there were so many people - I couldn't even get close to it. But, it's been years - maybe I will check into it again!

   RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by Rob on 9/22/2003 at 5:33:45 PM
I heard mixed "reviews" about police auctions...I think in the smaller towns they might be interesting...I went to one in my city a couple of years ago...there was some interesting stuff in terms of lightweights, but the whole approach and the atmosphere was not to my liking...they lumped things together in lots that obviously were designed to get rid of the junk along with the gems. For anything really interesting, it was an absolute feeding frenzy...you felt like you were in a zoo...you had to pay about $10, I think it was, to register, then a buyer's fee of 15% on anything you bought. I could see that there were some good deals, but I don't think, when you consider the stuff is second hand and often stolen as well, there were any bargains...some of the buyers were obvioulsy business operators, they were after the newer mid range MTBs...I guess they've done their homework and probably figure they could squeeze another $100 out of a bike selling it in their store... The whole thing was too slick and too well organized...and there were far too many people, to me it felt more like a 'fleecing'...definitely not a buyer's market. I have no intention of going back.

Now that's in the big city...I have heard police auctions in the smaller towns can be much more interesting, more of a buyer's market, though, of course, there will be less to choose from...

   RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by Dave on 9/22/2003 at 6:36:24 PM
I concur , but nice finds all,(I had a Peugeot Challenge that was NOS, a nice machine too!). In the early 90's I bought a $10 Azuki that was extremely rusty w/o a front wheel from a suburban Chicagoland police auction. I eventually stripped the suntour drivetrain off of it because the frame had more rust than paint on it and it was a 25" frame size,(too big). It was a feeding frenzy, esp. for Department store MTB's, one Huffy sold for $135.00 which I'm sure was at least $20 more than KMart sold it for. There were almost no LW's of any type and the MTB's were selling at crazy prices. Definitly go with the small towns for police auctions and avoid large towns.

   RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by Gralyn on 9/22/2003 at 8:27:04 PM
I'm from a small town....and it's usually a feeding frenzy, too.

Hey, I just remembered something.....like whenever the local Physician has a yard sale.....folks swarm on the place! I guess they think that's where the really good stuff will be! I suppose there are people who look for that sort of thing. I suppose it's kind of an efficient way to try to find the best quality stuff at a bargain price. Some people go to more wealthier neighborhoods on Saturdays looking for yard sales. ....Hmmmm maybe I'm onto something here? As the vintage lightweights get more and more scarce....maybe I should start looking into auctions and yard sales?

   RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by Ron on 9/23/2003 at 2:17:51 AM
Just like the kids that trick-or-treat in the nicer neighborhoods, 'cause that's where the best stuff is.
I live in a small town too, but it seems that the only bikes here came from Wal-Mart. When I was a kid, the rich kids had Schwinns and everyone else had Huffy or Murray. Nobody knew about lightweights unless you knew someone who had been to college and had a three-speed.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by Randy on 9/23/2003 at 5:57:12 PM
Our local police auction is also a feeding frenzy - for mountain bikes. The vintage lightweights go for a song. i do, however; expect that this will change soon. When you are yard saling make sure that you mention to the sellers that you are interested on old ten speeds. This has created good results for me. Also, whenever I do buy a bike I ask the seller if he knows of anyone else who might have an old bike. This word of mouth technique os quite often very effective. Of course, it could well be that I am the first person in my area to tap into the vintage lightweight market. They seem to be very easy to find so far although I did experience a bit of a dry spell during the height of the summer. Going to look at a brand new Sekine SHX with a full Dura Ace component group tonight. The bike was given to the felllow for work performed twenty some years ago and it has been hanging in his garage ever since. He is interested in trading it for a Bianchi Premio that I have.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHTS:   Bianchi Rekord posted by JONathan on 9/23/2003 at 7:53:13 PM
Alright, I got to throw in, here. My recent garage sale stops have been all in the neighborhood of 5 miles from home. Seems that sellers are getting some notion that the vintage lightweights are valuable (they are!), which demonstrates a bit of the secret has busted out.
One normal 10-speed Azuki was going for 95$. Unheard of until now. I looked over the bike and opted for an antique bathroom sink for 15$, that is worth 400$. My point is, they had no clue about the sink, but the bike had respect. The church rummage sales are the best bets for me.
The bikes are priced to move and those that don't end up in a pile with a "free" sign posted. I'm getting fevered up over a couple of big ones coming soon. I hope things are as they have been for years, major cheap.
Problem is, they are not accummulating, the population of vintage LW's is finite, so the tide may have started back out.
Happy hunts, all.
BTW, some of the finds posted lately are unreal.

MISC:   Nishiki Sport Mixte posted by: bdebruyne@att.net on 9/22/2003 at 11:51:53 AM
Looks like the bikes are shaking loose now. The yard sales are becoming more productive. I picked up a Nishiki sport 18 speed Mixte frame this weekend for $10 because it was missing a front QR. Not many people buy bikes when you can't secure the front wheel to the bike. I was picking it up for parts since it had alloy QR wheels and a triple chainring. When I got it home, I noticed it was a 4130 CroMo frame, and after some cleaning was looking real good. I collected the parts and put them away to be fixed and reassembled later. I figured it to be a 1986 from the date marks on the DiaCompe brakes. Anyone know where this stood in the pecking order of Nishiki, and about what it went for when new?

   RE:MISC:   Nishiki Sport Mixte posted by Gralyn on 9/22/2003 at 12:29:24 PM
I hope some will start to shake loose around here! Lately, I have seen just a couple bikes - well, I did luck up on an old Viscount. I will be looking for them! I did pick up a "parts" bike the other day. I'm really looking out for alloy wheels, decent brakes, etc. - but they're just getting pretty rare around here.

I had a Nishiki Sport with ChroMo frame - it was a good bike....Not sure where in the line-up it was....but I don't think it was the bottom....maybe lower-to-middle.

AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by: Gralyn on 9/21/2003 at 12:06:08 AM
I spotted a Lotus, ladies model. I can't remember the model name - it had alloy wheels, QR front only. Nothing particularly stood out on this bike - except for the cranks. They were the kind that have a built-in ratchet mechanism - so that the cranks can turn backwards - but the chainring doesn't. Are these crank systems of any value, desirability, or collectibility?
(of course, I know how it works: if they are...then the bike will be gone next time I stop by. If they are not - the bike will probably still be there.)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by Ken on 9/21/2003 at 2:02:45 AM
Gralyn, I may be wrong but I've never even seen these on three-piece cranks. The idea of course was to be able to coast and shift (...?) and requires a rear cogset that isn't a freewheel, 'cause it doesn't... and a lot of them wound up on Varsities where a few extra ounces don't matter. Has any design other than Shimano's had vogue? Are there any with cotterless cranksets? Enlighten us, o wise ones;)

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by JONathan on 9/21/2003 at 2:53:35 AM
Gralyn, it is possible you have Shimano "Front Freewheel System" which was part of the Positron mechanism introduced
around the mid-'70's on the bikes that were target-priced...not TOTL. Unfortunately, there was little chance to develop the concept on the lower tier bikes.
Some bikes had both the Positron rear derailer and FFS. Take the '77 Schwinn "suburban" for one example. The mechanism is very complicated and I have left mine alone, except for greasing.
It may have been a precursory to indexed shifting...in that evol. chain.
Is it Shimano?

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by Tom / T-Mar on 9/21/2003 at 12:56:16 PM
Shimano produced at least 5 cranksets for the Front Freewheel System. All went by the product name Integer. Model GF-210 was the basic Ashtabula design. Models GF-400, GF-410 and GF-430 were steel, cottered designs, in different chainring configurations. Model GF-440 was the aluminum, cotterless design. The gaps in the numbering system (GF-200, GF-420) implies that there were two more designs. However, these may not have made it into production.

It is my recollection that the Front Freewheel System also utilized a rear wheel freewheel, contrary to Ken's statement. Shimano touted this a safety feature in the event that one's pantleg got in the chain. The rear freewheel would engage, overiding the front freewheel and causing the chain to stop. JONathan, you still have one of these sytems, so would you please verify the presence or absence of the rear freewheel with the FFS? It may just be another case of rusty memory, on my part. If I have been mistaken, Ken, please accept my apology.

By the way, these seems to be abundance of Toms making postings lately, so I think I will gradually switch over over my knickname, T-Mar, to avoid any future confusion. I'll post under both names for a short period. Yes, I'm the Tom with the overly technical and typically long postings. The lover of Miyatas and Canadain bicycles. The guy who got doored. By the way, the ribs appear to be almost completely healed, with only periodic, minor twinges of pain. Thxs.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by Dick in FL on 9/21/2003 at 8:53:03 PM
I have two PositronII-equipped bikes: a Schwinn Suburban and a Schwinn World Tourist. Only the World Tourist has the front freewheel. I am ecstatic to have these bikes. To reply to your questions ..... the World Tourist has a three piece cotterless crank with *no* evidence of a rear freewheel. These have got to be a couple of the best bicycles to have appeared with Positron shifting. I have run across inexpensive bikes that also had it. Too bad this didn't appear on more expensive bikes first. As it stands, index shifting was set back a decade by this marketing decision.

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by gary m on 9/21/2003 at 11:57:57 PM
ifi remmeber ALL FF systems had a safety slip system, a friction packed freewheel, even the shwinns, its there it may not look like it.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by JONathan on 9/22/2003 at 2:30:52 AM
Tom T., the chain keeps roving while coasting. I would hope the rear freewheel has a shearpin or something to break the rotation if the chain gets caught. I actually have the manual for the two "suburbans" that came with the bikes when purchased new. The owners hardly rode these bikes, as everything is incredibly preserved. As soon as things setlle down around here, I may have a spot for it upstairs. Hefting it up the stairs is not something I relish. Thanks for the model descriptions and FW information. I presume that friction packed FW precludes it being use as a fixed-gear.
Thanks, JONathan
I'll get as much spec. on it as I can see. Post later...maybe by tomorrow, I hope.

   RE:RE:RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by Ron on 9/22/2003 at 9:22:18 AM
I have the original owner's manual for my wife's Collegete, and it also covers the Suburban. The manual mentions the ability of the rear freewheel to break away if you were to get your pantleg caught in the chain. The manual is from 1977.

   RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by Ken on 9/22/2003 at 5:58:25 PM
Thanks Dick, T-Mar, and everyone. Of course Shimano Front Freewheel is the design I was talking about; I'd like someone to let us know what bikes besides the World Tourist spec'd the alloy cotterless version which I've never seen. T-Mar, a regular freewheel would work, except it would defeat the purpose which is to keep the chain moving while coasting. Dick, I expect the concept was doomed because shifting before you stop is second nature, so experienced riders don't need the feature with the (presumed) weight penalty. (You still have to be moving, either way.) The breakaway feature is also news to me; you certainly couldn't cause one of those babies to freewheel with your bare hands...

   RE:RE:RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by JONathan on 9/22/2003 at 7:30:05 PM
Tom, all I found on the rear derailer was "positron" on the face of the //-ogram and "preselect" on the thin edge of same.
The front is a 52/39 double chainring with front freewhell. The whole chainring has a little play in it wihich I presume is "normal", but that must sap power and wear the chain and rings a bit more. There are clicks coming from the rear derailer when shifting. More like a detent tahn a true indexing, I presume.
The rear cluster is not freewheeling by hand. I would have to remove the wheel and test in a vise; using wooden inserts on the jaws of the vise so as not to damage the cog teeth. The thought of winding a pant cuff into the chainwheel is a fearful concern. I used to get my shoe strings caught in the chainring or around the cotter-pin, but that was on a normal freewheel bike.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/22/2003 at 9:13:32 PM
The only requirement for the Front Freewhweel System (FFS) to function with a rear freewheel, is that the friction required to initiate the ratcheting/freewheel process be lower on the front, than on the rear. This can be accomplished two ways. A normal, rear freewheel with a low friction, front freewheel, or a normal friction, front freewheel, with a high friction, rear freewheel. Shimano chose the latter approach, as Gary M stated. I believe the term Shimano used for the rear freewheel in the FFS was a Friction Freewheel.

While it may not be appear to be a freewheel to a casual observer, it is still a freewheel. It should turn backwards, without threading off of the hub. It just requires more force. (Try a chain whip, JONathan - I suspect a lot of these have inceased friction after sitting around for the past 25 years.) The alternative is to call it a fixed gear, which it certainly is not. Some may consider this a grey area, but it is more a freewheel, than "isn't a freewheel", as originally stated. Semantics? Definitely!

I have had a look through some old magazines and have only found ads/road tests for using the Ashtabula or cottered FFS. I suspect there were a lot more of these, than those that used the cotterless FFS, but a cotterless FFS was definitely produced.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by Gralyn on 9/22/2003 at 11:39:04 PM
I stopped by today - and the Lotus was still there. I didn't spend much time - but just enough to verify that the rear cogs are fixed - so that the chain would be moving all the time - with the ratchet action in the cranks.

But I was wondering how the rear cogs are set-up? It would be interesting to see.....but I don't happen to have $35 to find out. Well, amazingly, it's been there almost a week now. Usually, they don't last that long - even a ladies model - and at that price. At the same location - there was an old Free Spirit - for like $40 or $45 - it was there at least 2 weeks - maybe more - eventually, it dissappeared.

   RE:AGE / VALUE:   Lotus (ladies) with ratchet crank posted by T-Mar / Tom on 9/23/2003 at 1:10:53 PM
Ken: Kabuki, Panasonic and Zebrakenko were probably the 3 most prestigious brands to utilize Shimano's FFS. Old ads and road tests show models with the Ashtabula and cottered cranks. However, there is a good possibility that higher modesl may have used the cotterless FFS, so you may want to keep an eye peeled for these brands.

MISC:   ''go ride a bike'' posted by: luke on 9/20/2003 at 8:47:17 PM
after reading my reply,s, ive come to the conclusion that some people should not enter the relm of bicycling.
but then again, there,s allway,s one or two weak spokes in any give,n wheel.
and all here know rust never sleeps!!!!!

   RE:RE:MISC:   ''go ride a bike'' posted by Edmund on 9/21/2003 at 5:40:03 PM
well, the dave post below, '55 bike, 48 years old, that this guy, came out, after the respectful Kifer posts calling himself "Kifer", the game that has gone on here, I think, more than a "mental problem" is at fault here, however, this "mental problem" is the big hate civil rights violation of the University. To bad, censorship, to sexual abuse, sexism, ageism, crazyism, doesn't occur here, but to others, who assert they have a right to life, and their family as well.

   RE:MISC:   ''go ride a bike'' posted by Walter on 9/20/2003 at 10:34:11 PM
What was that all about anyways? From checking thrift stores for bargains (a pretty constant topic hereabouts) to inane babbling about stalking. I probably don't want to know. Perhaps the moderator will just delete all of that.

   RE:RE:RE:MISC:   ''go ride a bike'' posted by Edmund on 9/21/2003 at 5:41:23 PM
well, the dave post below, '55 bike, 48 years old, that this guy, came out, after the respectful Kifer posts calling himself "Kifer",

should read calling himself "Luker" rather.

   RE:MISC:   ''go ride a bike'' posted by A Regular Poster on 9/21/2003 at 4:01:16 AM
Luke...I wouldn't worry about it...it's pretty obvious someone has a bit of a problem...you could send an email to the moderator and they will figure out it and delete the post... I wouldn't be too hard on the perpetrators...often they have a mental problem and can't really help it...they'll go away soon enough...

   RE:RE:MISC:   ''go ride a bike'' posted by luke on 9/21/2003 at 5:53:59 PM
right on,bro!!!!
ride on,bro!!!!!