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  1. #1
    Senior Member dukes909's Avatar
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    Can I upgrade this bike?

    I have a mid-late 80's Peugeot lugged steel bike that I would like to upgrade:

    Picture of old Peugeot on photobucket


    The compononets are Shimano - SIS stuff. Wheels are ok but not in the greatest shape.

    My question is, can I make this a decent road bike by replacing most of the components? I'm not ready to shell out a couple of thousand for a new road bike, and like this bike ok (it was free) and it fits well. I've changed derailleurs, brakes before so I'm not a complete newbie to the mechanical side.

    Can I just tear this thing down and start adding stuff, or are there some componentry that won't work? It it even worth it? I hate throwing away stuff is why I ask.

  2. #2
    Senior Member rufvelo's Avatar
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    It is a beautiful bike with pretty sporty geometry. I'd say use as is, just replace what doesn't work, starting with tires/tubes, brake pads, chain, pedals etc...

    Tearing down the whole thing and adding stuff will make you wish you bought a $600 low-end Trek to begin with.

  3. #3
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    The biggest potential problem will be the spacing of the rear wheel in relation to the rear dropouts. Your Peugeot is likely spaced for a 5, 6 or 7 speed freewheel. In other words, either 120 or 126mm. Current 8,9 and 10speed wheels are all 130mm spaced. I suggest reading the second on SheldonBrown.com about wheel spacing to get a good understanding of the options you have here. Luckily however, it's probably a 700c wheel size already so you're set in that regard. As long as the new brakes you replace the current ones have the same reach length you'll be alright.

    Beyond that, yes, it is entirely *possible* to upgrade the Peugeot to a modern component group. Some will say it's a waste of money, but, I won't say that. It's a good steel ride, you say it fits you well. So why not keep it on the road? Shimano 105 build groups can be had for decent prices online and will have all the parts you'll need to build the bike up with modern parts. You could also go with a Campy Mirage or Veloce group if you were so inclinded.

    What you'll have to replace to go with a 9 or 10speed group:

    Wheels
    Crank/Bottom Bracket
    Derailleurs
    Shifters/Brake levers
    Cables/Housings

    I'm planning on building up one of my vintage frames next fall with a full modern group myself. Enjoy the project.

  4. #4
    Senior Member broomhandle's Avatar
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    i would leave it alone and ride it, and upgrade a newer bike or just get a newer bike.

  5. #5
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    I'm firmly in the "old, quality, lugged steel frames are great, and some of the older componentry is great too, but it sure is nice to have some of the more modern stuff on your old frame" camp. I say upgrade it if you want, but you do need to be prepared for a few "compatibility challenges" along the way, as mentioned above. But it can definitely be done.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukes909
    can I make this a decent road bike by replacing most of the components?
    Philosophically, you can't MAKE it a decent road bike; by appearances, it already is.

    Practically, upgrading won't make sense unless you get great deals and do the work yourself.

    If you just gotta have a modern bike, you can probably find one for $400-500 (ebay?) that will be better performing than this bike with $400-500 worth of upgrades.

    Like others have said, enjoy it for what it is, fix what's broken and nothing else.

  7. #7
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Hi,
    you asked a much more complicate question than you realise.
    It is a decision tree with dozens of possible branches...

    A great deal depends on budget. Even hitting ebay and bargain shopping, this will cost you.

    I'd start with replacing the cheesy old wheels. That's where it is needed, and where the most improvement can be found. Get some nice hubs, and some shiny new rims and have somebody build them into wheels. Picking the right rim is practicaly an art form. For fans of 23c tires, it's hard to go wrong with Mavic Open Pros. There are many other good choices. If you want nice new wheels, but
    cheap... look at the bottom of this page
    http://sheldonbrown.com/harris/wheels/622.html

    After wheels, I'd consider throwing on some Koolstop pads or even new brakes if they are the old cheesy kind, a new saddle, bar end shifters, and a nice handlebar like the Ritchey BioMax. Maybe some clipless pedals?

  8. #8
    Senior Member dukes909's Avatar
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    Wow, lots of good information here! I guess what I was getting at was will replacing the components like drivetrain, wheels turn this bike into a road bike comparable to something new? But it sounds like the cost and/or the compatibility problems may not make it worth it. Hmmm

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by cuda2k
    The biggest potential problem will be the spacing of the rear wheel in relation to the rear dropouts. Your Peugeot is likely spaced for a 5, 6 or 7 speed freewheel. In other words, either 120 or 126mm. Current 8,9 and 10speed wheels are all 130mm spaced. I suggest reading the second on SheldonBrown.com about wheel spacing to get a good understanding of the options you have here. Luckily however, it's probably a 700c wheel size already so you're set in that regard. As long as the new brakes you replace the current ones have the same reach length you'll be alright.

    Beyond that, yes, it is entirely *possible* to upgrade the Peugeot to a modern component group. Some will say it's a waste of money, but, I won't say that. It's a good steel ride, you say it fits you well. So why not keep it on the road? Shimano 105 build groups can be had for decent prices online and will have all the parts you'll need to build the bike up with modern parts. You could also go with a Campy Mirage or Veloce group if you were so inclinded.

    What you'll have to replace to go with a 9 or 10speed group:

    Wheels
    Crank/Bottom Bracket
    Derailleurs
    Shifters/Brake levers
    Cables/Housings

    I'm planning on building up one of my vintage frames next fall with a full modern group myself. Enjoy the project.
    I just have to say that Gazelle is a beautiful bike. You mentioned in another thread you had to cold set the back axle to fit the back tires. How complicated was that? On sheldonbrown.com it makes it look rather easy, but I still think I might want to take it in and have it done at the lbs, as well as have the wheels redished.

  10. #10
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by b*money
    I just have to say that Gazelle is a beautiful bike. You mentioned in another thread you had to cold set the back axle to fit the back tires. How complicated was that? On sheldonbrown.com it makes it look rather easy, but I still think I might want to take it in and have it done at the lbs, as well as have the wheels redished.
    Thanks, she's as much of a joy to ride as it is to look at too.

    My Gazelle actually I didn't have to do anything to get the 130mm spaced rear wheel in. It's a bit of a tight fit, but I can stretch the frame the 1mm or 2mm needed to get the wheel in the dropouts. On my Schwinn however I did have to break out the threaded rod and stretch things a little bit. Sheldon mentions it, but you really have to stretch it out to make a small perminate change. However, also mentioned is that there can be a fine line between not enough and too much. Follow his suggestions and take your time and you should be fine.

    I have a long threaded rod, two bolts and two large washers. I wrapped the brake bridge and chainstays with twine to reinforce them to ensure that nothing broke there while stretching the stays wide open. I stretched them a few cm to start, brought it down, measured, opened it up as wide as they were, then another cm, then back down, like that till I started noticing some change in width. Then I went in 3/4cm intervals till I got the width I wanted. Takes time, a little hard on the nerves at times. But better to spend the extra time then trying to bend the frame back the other way.

  11. #11
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    You can upgrade almost any old bike if you have enough money! Is it worth it in time and money or use the same to buy a more modern bike. Good luck.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by cuda2k
    I have a long threaded rod, two bolts and two large washers. I wrapped the brake bridge and chainstays with twine to reinforce them to ensure that nothing broke there while stretching the stays wide open. I stretched them a few cm to start, brought it down, measured, opened it up as wide as they were, then another cm, then back down, like that till I started noticing some change in width. Then I went in 3/4cm intervals till I got the width I wanted. Takes time, a little hard on the nerves at times. But better to spend the extra time then trying to bend the frame back the other way.
    This is exactly the technique I have used and it has the great advantage over Sheldon's 2x4 approach in that you can quantify how far you have spread the dropouts at each point.

    I recently cold-set an '83Trek lugged steel frame from 126 to 130 mm. I spread the dropouts to 140 mm, stopped and measured the result, which as expected, was no change. I proceded expanding in 10 mm additional increments, stopping and measuring, until I got to a permanant deflection of 2 mm. Then an additional 5 mm spread gave me a 3 mm increase and that was close enough.

  13. #13
    Senior_Member2 diff_lock2's Avatar
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    yup upgrading sucks, lol, from the store i got my 60eu bike, there was a 200eu bike right next to it, a pimp looking road bike. im thinking about it now, i should have got the road bike, but i dont have that kind of money, but im sure 200 is going to fly in to this 60eu bike in no time, 20 for the rack 40 for 2 tires and 2 tubes... and thats only the begening, and trueing the wheels like 60eu or somthing, so i might as well get new wheels, and thats 60 + the rim and spoke price... and new handle bars and that think that holds the handle bars the the steering tube (head??) whats that like 40 handles + head?... the thing is you get to learn tons of crap (its it too fun) when messing about with the bike, i still have a POS hanging out im thinking of make it my winter comuter... its 26"

  14. #14
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    What do you all mean with 'is it worth it'? If the frame is a good 'un, it fits you and it rides well-it is always worth it. Of course, if you look at the resale value of the bike then you are putting expensive new parts on an old bike. So? The newest bike will also be an old bike in 10 years time, meaning it all really comes down to this; do you like the bike? Does it fit you well? Does it ride well? Then rebuild it. I am in the process of rebuilding my old Peugeot PSN10e, and have fitted Easton EC90sl (full carbon) forks, Chris King headset, Look C/F seatpost, Time RXS pedals, Mavic SSC brakes... Sure, it costs a bundle of money. But then again, if I wanted to buy a new frame of compatible build quality with the same components new in the shop it would cost far more. And now I still get to hang on to my beloved old racer, which has been in the family almost 30 years!

    But, I do need a hand! Some *^&%$ has thrown away my BB, and although it needed to be replaced anyway, I now do not know the correct axle length. Any thoughts anyone?

  15. #15
    Bicycling Gnome
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukes909 View Post
    I have a mid-late 80's Peugeot lugged steel bike that I would like to upgrade:

    Picture of old Peugeot on photobucket


    The compononets are Shimano - SIS stuff. Wheels are ok but not in the greatest shape.

    My question is, can I make this a decent road bike by replacing most of the components? I'm not ready to shell out a couple of thousand for a new road bike, and like this bike ok (it was free) and it fits well. I've changed derailleurs, brakes before so I'm not a complete newbie to the mechanical side.

    Can I just tear this thing down and start adding stuff, or are there some componentry that won't work? It it even worth it? I hate throwing away stuff is why I ask.
    Just service it nicely, show it a bit of love and respect, and enjoy it for what it is - a nice sporty 1980s road bike. It will probably repay you amply with great rides and much pleasure.

    One of the problems of reading magazines and forums about bikes (or anything else you own and enjoy) is that it can make you very dissatisfied with things that are perfectly good as they are. Just ride it and take care of it. If it's well worn, take a look at the chain and maybe replace it. Unless this bike has been abused it's likely that the only parts that need replacing are chain and sprockets, but check or have them checked before you do that.

    Enjoy it.
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it, if you live." - Mark Twain

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    Spot on EvilV! +1 here. I rode my Peugeot until it wouldn't ride anymore. The things that wear out on a bike are tires, hub bearings, BB bearings, F & R cogs, chain and cables. Replace these if needed, and if not, just service them regularly. My Peugeot delivered 25 years of everyday use without problem that way. I replaced the chain once in that time, and due to a buckled front and rear wheel had no choice but to replace them at age 23. As I could no longer get a 5speed rear wheel I had to replace it with a 7sp. But everything still worked no problem. I only replaced the BB and cranks when I rebuilt the bike 6 years ago, but I'm sure it would have lasted longer. If you go to The Netherlands you will see people (mainly poor students) that ride 30+ year old bikes that have NEVER been serviced and these still keep going. Of course, if you want current day performance of your bike you will need to put some current day stuff on it. But a bike is a bike is a bike. If it gets you from A to B it has served its purpose!!!

  17. #17
    Bicycling Gnome
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    Quote Originally Posted by Earth1tree23 View Post
    Spot on EvilV! +1 here. I rode my Peugeot until it wouldn't ride anymore. The things that wear out on a bike are tires, hub bearings, BB bearings, F & R cogs, chain and cables. Replace these if needed, and if not, just service them regularly. My Peugeot delivered 25 years of everyday use without problem that way. I replaced the chain once in that time, and due to a buckled front and rear wheel had no choice but to replace them at age 23. As I could no longer get a 5speed rear wheel I had to replace it with a 7sp. But everything still worked no problem. I only replaced the BB and cranks when I rebuilt the bike 6 years ago, but I'm sure it would have lasted longer. If you go to The Netherlands you will see people (mainly poor students) that ride 30+ year old bikes that have NEVER been serviced and these still keep going. Of course, if you want current day performance of your bike you will need to put some current day stuff on it. But a bike is a bike is a bike. If it gets you from A to B it has served its purpose!!!
    Actually, my brother in law is sixty and has just bought himself a new bike. The remarkable thing is that he has been riding a bike to work and back, ten miles a day that he has been riding since he was eighteen years old. The bike is 42 and does ten miles a day which it has done to my knowledge for at least thirty of those years. God knows how many miles it has done - hang on - I did maths as a kid.....

    Assuming he rode it for forty weeks a year for thirty years and did ten miles, which is about right, that's

    10*5*40*30

    which is sixty thousand miles.... LOL. I truly believe it has as well. He told me he's replaced every bearing, some more than once. Its a Dawes touring bike by the way.
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it, if you live." - Mark Twain

  18. #18
    that bike nut BikingGrad80's Avatar
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    Why not just buy a bike with compatable parts and swap them all over and stick the frame on ebay or craigslist. The rear stays can be spread by a good LBS to 130 for ~$20

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilV View Post
    Actually, my brother in law is sixty and has just bought himself a new bike. The remarkable thing is that he has been riding a bike to work and back, ten miles a day that he has been riding since he was eighteen years old. The bike is 42 and does ten miles a day which it has done to my knowledge for at least thirty of those years. God knows how many miles it has done - hang on - I did maths as a kid.....

    Assuming he rode it for forty weeks a year for thirty years and did ten miles, which is about right, that's

    10*5*40*30

    which is sixty thousand miles.... LOL. I truly believe it has as well. He told me he's replaced every bearing, some more than once. Its a Dawes touring bike by the way.
    Impressive! Around the world 2.5 times! And I am sure he will easily make it three now! Give him a pat on the back from me (or 2.5 :-) ) He sure deserves it! Imagine how many tonnes of carbon he has saved by not driving!!!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikingGrad80 View Post
    Why not just buy a bike with compatable parts and swap them all over and stick the frame on ebay or craigslist. The rear stays can be spread by a good LBS to 130 for ~$20
    That would sure as hell not work for me though. The empty frame would sit there for months and I would end up rebuilding that too...

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