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  1. #1
    Senior Member kuso's Avatar
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    Trying to identify an early 90's MTB. Specialized?

    Sometime in its life it was repainted and I'm having a hard time figuring out what it is. It has a specialized headset, wishbone seat stay, and an Under the stay U-brake. I looked through all the specialized models of the early 90's but none have these features.






    Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    U-brakes (though usually found on the chainstays) were just about gone by the 90s. Check the 80s catalogs, although back then most mountain bikes still had the level top tube so it's puzzling.

    Once you find the wishbone stay you can pretty much guarantee what it is. That and the U-brake mounts on the bottom of the seat stays are very unique. Possible that this was even a custom frame?
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  3. #3
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    That toga stem will be a big clue- not many OEM applications and I'd be surprised if it wasn't stock.

    The ubrakes are routed wrong. Something about that lug where the seat and top tubes intersect reminds of a raleigh technum (or some other bonded alloy bike), but I'm pretty sure it's not a technum.
    Last edited by IthaDan; 03-28-12 at 02:00 PM.

  4. #4
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    +1 U brake = late 1980s, just look up component codes. Crankset, derailleurs, etc., will all have date codes.

  5. #5
    Bianchi Goddess Bianchigirll's Avatar
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    I agree the U brake makes it a late '80s although I want to say on a smaller frame the Ubrake on the seatstays may be a tad later.

    I think the TT slopes simply because it is a smaller frame.

    Wasn't Tioga a house brand for Western States Importers (WSI) AKA Diamondbanck? or maybe Mongoose?

    Other than the HS is there anything else that makes you think it is a specialized?
    Bianchis '87 Sport SX, '90 Proto (2), '91 Boarala 'cross, '93 Project 3, '88 Trofeo, '86 Volpe, '89 Axis, '79 Mixte SOLD, '99 Mega Pro XL Ti, '97 Ti Megatube, , '90 something Vento 603,

    Others but still loved,; '80 RIGI, '80 Batavus Professional, '87 Cornelo, '86 Bertoni (sold), '09 Motobecane SS, '98 Hetchins M.O., '09 K2 Mainframe, '89 Trek 2000, '?? Jane Doe (still on the drawing board), '90ish Haro Escape

  6. #6
    Senior Member kuso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
    I agree the U brake makes it a late '80s although I want to say on a smaller frame the Ubrake on the seatstays may be a tad later.

    I think the TT slopes simply because it is a smaller frame.

    Wasn't Tioga a house brand for Western States Importers (WSI) AKA Diamondbanck? or maybe Mongoose?

    Other than the HS is there anything else that makes you think it is a specialized?
    no just the headset. Well I guess the water bottle holder is specialized as well, but that could have very easily been added on.

    Thanks for the tips so far, i'll keep hunting!

  7. #7
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    Says here that in 1988 Raleigh started using the wishbone stay and chainstay mounted brakes (does not say u-brake or canti.) http://mombat.org/Raleigh.htm

    I was unable to find any Raleigh catalogs or good pictures but this Technium frame on ebay looks similar, although not the same as your bike: http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-RALE...item256ebdda69 Particularly the fork ends look similar.

    What material is your bike? Is it steel or bonded aluminum? That will be another clue.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  8. #8
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    Hmm, I've done a rather sizable amount of googling for this one. I haven't come across a single mountain bike with 990s on the bottom of the seatstays. Not one. The straddle cable guide reminds me of a gt of the era, but there's no triple triangle.

    The era of this is pretty much from like 88-91. This is a tough one.

  9. #9
    Senior Member kuso's Avatar
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    I assumed steel but i'll take a second look. The seat tube also has an interesting lug if you could call it that. I'm not sure if its all that noticeable in the pictures but there is an elevated ring just under the top tube joint.

    thanks for the help looking, Ive searched through hundreds of google image searches with no luck trying to narrow it down.

  10. #10
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    what do the stickers say? What about that braze on on the back of the seat tube, opposite the clamp, is that another frame mount other than the wishbone or one of those spring seat height dealiemabobs?

    Are the hubs DX as well?

  11. #11
    Senior Member kuso's Avatar
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    I'll take another look next time i'm in the garage. The downtube sticker says taper. The rocky mountain "wedge" has the 990 brake and similar frame shape but no wishbone stay.

  12. #12
    Bianchi Goddess Bianchigirll's Avatar
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    OffRoad? They became Proflex around /92/3ish
    Bianchis '87 Sport SX, '90 Proto (2), '91 Boarala 'cross, '93 Project 3, '88 Trofeo, '86 Volpe, '89 Axis, '79 Mixte SOLD, '99 Mega Pro XL Ti, '97 Ti Megatube, , '90 something Vento 603,

    Others but still loved,; '80 RIGI, '80 Batavus Professional, '87 Cornelo, '86 Bertoni (sold), '09 Motobecane SS, '98 Hetchins M.O., '09 K2 Mainframe, '89 Trek 2000, '?? Jane Doe (still on the drawing board), '90ish Haro Escape

  13. #13
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    Yeah, rocky mountain has a couple bikes with the inboard facing seatstay mounted 990s. It's a tough google- that design has been coopted by bmx bikes for more than a decade.

    I feel like it's an american upstart maker. I checked out the rocky mountain (fine, NORTH american), fisher and kona catalogs, and I felt like I was close, but I couldn't find the exact bike. What size is the headset? Gary Fisher was really big on 1 1/4" around this era.

  14. #14
    Senior Member kuso's Avatar
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    Definitely steel and it has a 1 1/8" headset.

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