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Old 11-28-13, 03:27 PM   #26
Duane Behrens
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Well-stated. I support you 100%. (Well, maybe 90% if the thing's too small for you, but...)

This thing we do, this buying/riding/tuning/fixing bikes thing, it's about a lot of various motivations. Fun, fitness, thrift, profit, thrills, props from online forums, props at the cafe, obtuse political statements, convoluted social experiments, relief for ADHD symptoms, etc. There's a pile of reasons why ppl get into this game, and not all of these reasons will apply to everyone. (I'm into it for fun, ADHD relief, and the occasional compliment for the rare type of person who appreciates the crap I build-- the rest don't apply to me, but I respect cyclists for whom the other factors do apply..)

Duane understands that he'll not make money on this bike, and will probably not get "mad propz" from anyone online. He wants a functional bike with which he can practice bike maintenance/repair and get some rides in. If it's too small (I think it is), he can sell/give it to someone of the appropriate size. He realizes this, he's stated as much, so why are we gonna pile on him about how this particular Nishiki doesn't have butted tubes or forged dropouts?

If he's doing this , who are we to question what his definition of fun might be? If you don't enjoy working on old budget-bikes, that's fine; unless you're a working bike mechanic, you don't have to. I, for one, like to work on crusty cruisers for fun, and i enjoy building a few bikes down at the co-op from time to time. To each his/her own.
Great stuff. I stumble with words sometimes, whereas you seem to have nailed it. Thanks.
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Old 11-28-13, 03:28 PM   #27
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A good number of reasonably wise people on this forum have taken Raleigh Gran Prixs and Peugeot U-08s and have really cherry'd them out. They love the ride, the steel is well worth restoring and they LOVE their bikes. Whatever pulls your chain. If you do a full restore on it, you should consider a used Brooks saddle and leather bar tape. That would be pretty cool to see what you end up with after the re-spin. I always enjoy sharing in the joy of a neglected vintage bike being made whole, or even better than original.
Thank you. I wonder if some of these wise ladies and gents can suggest a source for frame decals?
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Old 11-28-13, 11:15 PM   #28
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^That would be velo-cals. I believe they have a website and an EBay storefront.
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Old 11-29-13, 12:37 AM   #29
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Thank you very much. I'll get on it. What I've learned so far:

1. I now know what a cone nut is, and why I now need a cone wrench.
2. On these old bikes, the bearings don't come in disposable cartridges.
3. A seized-up expander bolt in a steering head is common and can be broken free by a single sharp tap with a hammer to the top bolt;
4. New front derailleurs rout the cable in from the top. Old ones, from the bottom. The difference matters.

And so on. And of course there is that line from the old Honda CL90 motorcycle manual: "Before working on motorcycle, make sure mind is in happy place."

Happy Thanksgiving. Thanks again for all the help here . . .
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Old 11-29-13, 10:55 AM   #30
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The paint is coming off slowly, but it's coming . . . Stripper, putty knife, drill with wire brush attachment . . . repeat.

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Old 11-29-13, 11:21 AM   #31
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Stripping paint builds character. I have enough character myself.
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Old 11-29-13, 11:27 AM   #32
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3. A seized-up expander bolt in a steering head is common and can be broken free by a single sharp tap with a hammer to the top bolt;
4. New front derailleurs rout the cable in from the top. Old ones, from the bottom. The difference matters.
#3- sometimes. when yer lucky.
#4- sometimes, but most road FDs are still bottom pull. Many mtb FDs are ambi-pull--top or bottom.

Have fun! & take your time...
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Old 11-29-13, 11:28 AM   #33
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Stripping paint builds character. I have enough character myself.
My mother used to use the phrase "TRY using some elbow grease." :-)

Anyone removed a metal emblem from a head tube? This one appears to be riveted in on both sides. (not sure if it's visible in the photo) Drilling out those rivets with a very tiny bit SEEMS like the way to go . . . I just don't want to ruin it in the process. . . .

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Old 11-29-13, 11:47 AM   #34
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My mother used to use the phrase "TRY using some elbow grease." :-)

Anyone removed a metal emblem from a head tube? This one appears to be riveted in on both sides. (not sure if it's visible in the photo) Drilling out those rivets with a very tiny bit SEEMS like the way to go . . . I just don't want to ruin it in the process. . . .

I'd see if the rivets can be knocked out from the inside of the head tube. That's what I did on my Centurion. I haven't bothered otherwise.
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Old 11-29-13, 11:52 AM   #35
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I'd see if the rivets can be knocked out from the inside of the head tube. That's what I did on my Centurion. I haven't bothered otherwise.
I agree. Shearing off the rivet heads inside the headtube will assure that you don't damage the badge. The rivets are probably soft aluminum and should break easily.
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Old 11-29-13, 08:29 PM   #36
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I agree. Shearing off the rivet heads inside the headtube will assure that you don't damage the badge. The rivets are probably soft aluminum and should break easily.
Yup - that worked great - the emblem is off now with no damage. Thank you both.
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Old 11-30-13, 10:12 PM   #37
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. . . . and as I continued to strip paint from the frame, this heart-shaped emblem appeared on the underside of the downtube. No idea what its purpose was or is, but I like it.

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Old 11-30-13, 10:54 PM   #38
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^It's a clamp-on shifter "doogie". You mount the shifter just above the doogie and it keeps it in place.
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Old 11-30-13, 10:54 PM   #39
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. . . . and as I continued to strip paint from the frame, this heart-shaped emblem appeared on the underside of the downtube. No idea what its purpose was or is, but I like it.

Could that be a tab for an optional clamp-on down tube shifter set? If so, it's there to keep the clamp from being pulled out of position by the tension of the shifter cables. I've always seen them on the top of the down tube, not the bottom. So it may be something else, entirely.

On the subject of paint, I didn't see any mention of what you decided on. I recommend you find an auto repair shop that will paint the frame with catalyzed automotive paint. It will be much harder than rattle-can stuff. Or, you could get it powdercoated, which would be even tougher. I personally think paint looks better. And it has infinite color variety, optional metal flake, and higher gloss than powdercoat. I'm having a frame painted right now, for $60. Powdercoat would probably be more like $80-100.
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Old 11-30-13, 11:44 PM   #40
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Thanks, guys! I won't lie to you - I'm thinking of replacing the old SunTour derailleurs with a new Shimano set - front and rear derailleurs and 7-speed freewheel hub - paired to a handlebar-mounted shifter and brake set up. If that's what I end up with, that little heart will come in handy as an anchor point for cable stops.

Also appreciate the advice on paint . . . and that's exactly what I'll do . . . have the frame painted at a local shop, then maybe dress it up by taping off the frame and painting the lugs an accent color. Somewhere in there - after the color coat and before the clear coat - I'll have to fetch the frame back to apply the new NISHIKI decals . . . unless the paint shop is willing to do that for me.

Thanks again. . . . Duane
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Old 12-01-13, 03:20 AM   #41
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enjoy your rebuild project. dont let us discourage you or belittle your bike.

have fun, learn. next time around you can score a BF approved resto project thats worthy of some good loven. by then you'll be a pro and do it up right. we'll all be in awe.
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Old 12-01-13, 06:58 AM   #42
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Duane,
Since you'll be selling this bike, I'd advise that you think of your target buyer - a woman who is 5'5" or so. Select your color scheme on that basis, something like pearlescent white with pink or red bar tape. Use black or red housing and forego the decals. Just keep the headbadge. Keep the aesthetics clean and bright.

Don't change the drivetrain, as it adds costs with no return. Taeget the bike at the $205 price point and try like mad not to be upside down on material costs. Move on to the next project bike. You should be looking at 56 or 58 cm frames. PG
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Old 12-01-13, 08:58 AM   #43
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Thank you both. One of the reasons I'm waffling on the components is that I never actually rode the bike before taking it apart. In hindsight, that was a bad decision. I should have repaired the tires, put the wheels back on and taken an assessment ride.

The front derailleur APPEARED to be bent and locked onto the large cog, so I figured I'd have to replace it. Others smarter than me here say you can't mix and match Shimano and Sun Tour parts, so I also figured i'd have to replace the RD. Then why not ditch the turkey leg brakes for a complete bar-mounted system? Which, of course, gets into money. Sigh.

Good advice on the paint. It will probably be a neutral color, probably white with blue accents, although my strong wish is for solid red with black bar tape.
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Old 12-01-13, 09:47 AM   #44
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Duane,
Since you'll be selling this bike, I'd advise that you think of your target buyer - a woman who is 5'5" or so...Target the bike at the $205 price...
Why a woman - it's a diamond frame, not woman specific, and a woman is likely not going to make friends with that saddle.
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Old 12-01-13, 12:12 PM   #45
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The front derailleur APPEARED to be bent and locked onto the large cog, so I figured I'd have to replace it. Others smarter than me here say you can't mix and match Shimano and Sun Tour parts, so I also figured i'd have to replace the RD.
If you want index shifting, that is correct. For friction shifters, you can mix-and-match pretty much at will. As noted adding brifters will get into real money real fast. Consider Tektro aero brake levers at less than $25/pair and use bar end friction shifters.
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Old 12-01-13, 12:57 PM   #46
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Why a woman - it's a diamond frame, not woman specific, and a woman is likely not going to make friends with that saddle.
In my mind, there are more women looking for bikes in that size than men. In my market (DC), it's an easier sale. The ad focuses on the safety, stability, reliability and style. At any rate, when building to sell, the target buyer drives my choices and my listing. That was my point.

True on the saddle, cny-bikeman, though...
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Old 12-01-13, 02:03 PM   #47
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You seem to be keeping the budget in mind, which is essential. My current project has blown its budget to pieces, mainly because I bought a bunch of stuff for the bike to make it "better", before I had my budget outlined. In truth, I didn't have to replace the wheels or crankset for the bike to function. It was a matter of selecting lighter, higher quality components, with a bit of aesthetic influence thrown in. Had I made the budget first, I would have made different choices, considering it needed cables, bottom bracket, saddle, tires, grips, etc. In the end, this bike is a gift for my daughter. So I can justify the expenditure based upon that. But if I were flipping the bike, I'd be in trouble. Do keep us updated.
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Old 12-01-13, 04:02 PM   #48
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You seem to be keeping the budget in mind, which is essential. My current project has blown its budget to pieces, mainly because I bought a bunch of stuff for the bike to make it "better", before I had my budget outlined. In truth, I didn't have to replace the wheels or crankset for the bike to function. It was a matter of selecting lighter, higher quality components, with a bit of aesthetic influence thrown in. Had I made the budget first, I would have made different choices, considering it needed cables, bottom bracket, saddle, tires, grips, etc. In the end, this bike is a gift for my daughter. So I can justify the expenditure based upon that. But if I were flipping the bike, I'd be in trouble. Do keep us updated.
As your current project will be a gift to your daughter . . . I think the decisions you made were perfect. :-)
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Old 12-01-13, 09:38 PM   #49
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And of course there is that line from the old Honda CL90 motorcycle manual: "Before working on motorcycle, make sure mind is in happy place."
Oh man! Wish that line had been included in my Yamaha manual, especially when I was learning to set the valves. I was like, "neighbors, hide your children!" Lots of cussing and *****ing - not a happy place at all.

As far as bicycles, every old bike I've ever restored I've put way more into than I could get out. And that's because I was fixing them for myself, to be fun to ride and beautiful to look at. I've always got to fix the ergonomics, and I love Brooks saddles and good tires. And you can spend upwards to $200 on those last two items alone.

At any rate, enjoy your project. You've got a good attitude about the learning process, and that's half the fun of it.

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Old 12-02-13, 08:35 AM   #50
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A poster on another list wanted to know if I had "stamped" or "forged" dropouts. I posted a picture; I assume these are "stamped," since that would have been a less expensive manufacturing technique, right? Not that it matters. These continue to perform perfectly.


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