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    Member zs3889's Avatar
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    Centurion Dave Scott Ironman Expert

    New to biking! The weather is getting nicer and I am tired of taking the bus to work, even though it's only 15 minutes bus ride, I figure I would have more freedom riding a bicycle to work.

    Saw this on a local website and not sure if it's a good buy. I know nothing about bicycle other than the types of bike (road, mountain, hybrid, etc.).

    http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=218...arch=&ad_cid=9

    968896-1392583520-481021.jpg

    PLEASE HELP!!
    Last edited by zs3889; 02-17-14 at 05:12 PM.

  2. #2
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    I'll say it again. GO BUY IT NOW! Or else it's probably already going to be gone.
    “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


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    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zs3889 View Post
    New to biking! The weather is getting nicer and I am tired of taking the bus to work, even though it's only 15 minutes bus ride, I figure I would have more freedom riding a bicycle to work.

    Saw this on a local website and not sure if it's a good buy. I know nothing about bicycle other than the types of bike (road, mountain, hybrid, etc.).

    http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=218...arch=&ad_cid=9

    968896-1392583520-481021.jpg

    PLEASE HELP!!
    Going to respond to your question here:
    Dave Scott Ironmans are well designed and built frames from Centurion, they use a high end tange steel for the tube metals and the components tend to be mid-high level on a whole these are excellent bikes and have a large cult following. Odds are you'll be able to make the bike fit, but even if you can't you should be able to get your money back out of it or trade it for one that does fit. On my CL that bike would be going for anywhere between 600-1000 just to give you a general idea (Disclaimer: I live in bike mecca practically, my CL prices will be higher than most any area excluding, NYC, SF proper, LA etc)
    “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


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    Member zs3889's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    Going to respond to your question here:
    Dave Scott Ironmans are well designed and built frames from Centurion, they use a high end tange steel for the tube metals and the components tend to be mid-high level on a whole these are excellent bikes and have a large cult following. Odds are you'll be able to make the bike fit, but even if you can't you should be able to get your money back out of it or trade it for one that does fit. On my CL that bike would be going for anywhere between 600-1000 just to give you a general idea (Disclaimer: I live in bike mecca practically, my CL prices will be higher than most any area excluding, NYC, SF proper, LA etc)

    Gotcha! I was initially looking at new, low-end bikes like Schwinn and etc. that would cost me around $200-$300 new. But after looking at some threads in this forum, I figured getting a used bike like this would be a better deal. And it seems like this one IS a better deal than getting a new bike with a budget of $200.

    I live in Salt Lake City, so I would say it is also one of the bike meccas. The seller responded and I am planning to check out the bike tomorrow and hopefully carry it home with me I mean ride it home with me. Any tips on checking the bike before making my decision? I assume that you have seen the photos and components in the link and they seem alright to you?

    Thank you very much!

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    Senior Member PatTheSlat's Avatar
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    Fixed link: http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=218...arch=&ad_cid=9

    It's a bizarre mix & match of components on that bike, but $200 is a steal and I'm surprised it's not already sold.

    That is a pretty tiny frame, so make sure it fits you properly.

  6. #6
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    some basics: make sure the wheels spin freely and truly (if not that's a price negotiation point), make sure it shifts freely and doesn't slip gears, make sure the fork doesn't look bent out of alignment.. also check for major dents in the tubes (another safety/negotiation point), the frameset alone is 100-200 in most bike markets.. I may have been optimistic about the 600-1000 for my area, more like 400-800 depending on upgrades yada yada...
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    I foolishly passed up a nice original Ironman Expert last spring for $175. I'm still kicking myself for not picking it up. If that one's in nice shape, and doesn't need a major amount of rehab, you certainly won't get hurt at that price.

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    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    They are fast and ride nice. I have the exact bike, paid $275 last year, sans tires and saddle. Suntour GPX is the standard group on mine. Ya gotta get rid of the red on that setup.

    Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving. Albert Einstein
    2014 Additions: 1985 Trek 560, 1992 Trek Multitrack 700 (my 2nd), 1994 Trek Carbon 2200, Peugeot PX-10, 1981 Schwinn Voyager, 1989 Bridgestone RB-1

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    Member zs3889's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PatTheSlat View Post
    Fixed link: http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=218...arch=&ad_cid=9

    It's a bizarre mix & match of components on that bike, but $200 is a steal and I'm surprised it's not already sold.

    That is a pretty tiny frame, so make sure it fits you properly.
    Didn't know that the link was not complete, thanks! Fortunately, the seller still has the bike and I am going to check it out and test ride tomorrow, I hope it all goes well.


    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    some basics: make sure the wheels spin freely and truly (if not that's a price negotiation point), make sure it shifts freely and doesn't slip gears, make sure the fork doesn't look bent out of alignment.. also check for major dents in the tubes (another safety/negotiation point), the frameset alone is 100-200 in most bike markets.. I may have been optimistic about the 600-1000 for my area, more like 400-800 depending on upgrades yada yada...
    Thanks a lot man, you have been really helpful. If you have any more info for a newbie who is going to buy a used classic bike tomorrow, please feel free educate me

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    Member zs3889's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nesteel View Post
    I foolishly passed up a nice original Ironman Expert last spring for $175. I'm still kicking myself for not picking it up. If that one's in nice shape, and doesn't need a major amount of rehab, you certainly won't get hurt at that price.
    Any tip on how to tell if the bike needs any major restoring? As far as I can tell, the tires are pretty much worn out, but that's not a concern.


    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    They are fast and ride nice. I have the exact bike, paid $275 last year, sans tires and saddle. Suntour GPX is the standard group on mine. Ya gotta get rid of the red on that setup.
    That is a very very pretty bike and it's in near perfect condition. As you can see in the link, the one I am looking at, there are some apparent scratches on the body. Yea I completely agree with you that the red tape on the handlebars needs to go. What on earth was the owner thinking?! The orange on the tires are not as bad but not my taste. Your bike is pretty much what I had in mind, but with a black saddle. If you have an album for your bike online somewhere (flickr or photobucket), I WOULD LOVE to see it!

    Also, is there any information on any of the bike's decals that tells you the size? Or the only way to know is to measure it? The seller just told me that he is not 100% sure of the size that he declared in the ad (52cm), it could be 53cm or 54cm.




    Also, one more silly question, how to operate a downtube gear shifter...?? Left or right? Shift up or down? Any brief instruction would be appreciated! I am dead serious when I said I am new to biking
    Last edited by zs3889; 02-17-14 at 11:16 PM.

  11. #11
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zs3889 View Post
    Thanks a lot man, you have been really helpful. If you have any more info for a newbie who is going to buy a used classic bike tomorrow, please feel free educate me
    To be perfectly frank, from the pics you can't go wrong giving the guy his asking price unless he's a master flimflammer.. you'll do fine. Do check back in though and let us know how it goes.

    Quote Originally Posted by zs3889 View Post
    Also, one more silly question, how to operate a downtube gear shifter...?? Left or right? Shift up or down? Any brief instruction would be appreciated! I am dead serious when I said I am new to biking
    Left side is your front gears, right side is the rear. It'll be obvious on the other part, the shifter will be in a position, note it and note where the corresponding derailer is on the gears, this is good anyways so you'll also know what gear the bike should be shifting too next.

    Once you have the bike in your possession we can talk about what to do mechanically to it.

    Seat tube measurements are notoriously inaccurate, there's a few different ways to do it and of course lots of people who are just really guessing.

    I think it was already said in this thread, that bike is already setup for someone similar to your measurements so I wouldn't be too concerned.
    Last edited by RaleighSport; 02-18-14 at 08:53 AM.
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    Senior Member Chicago Al's Avatar
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    From the other thread (and this is where it belonged anyway), re checking the bike out:

    Suggest you just peruse the forum history or start a new thread. (But be careful about revealing where you are---bikes 'outed' here have been known to disappear quickly.)

    Just a quick checklist:

    Look for frame damage, which would show dents or creases in the tubing, sometimes just a ripple or crack in the paint. Usually in front. That's a dealbreaker, unless the bike is priced fairly for just the parts.

    Check seatpost and stem to make sure they're not frozen/oxidized in place. You'll need the right metric allen keys for this. For the stem, loosen the allen, then rap on the top sharply, stem should come free. For the seatpost, just loosening the binder bolt and maybe a bit of pressure should do it. Both problems are common and while they can be overcome are pretty close to a dealbreaker--because you don't know how much work it'll take to fix them.

    Are wheels straight when you spin them? Does everything turn smoothly? Brakes not grabbing right and shifters not working right are minor issues, usually just adjustments or cable replacements, but can be ways to bargain price down.

    Don't worry about superficial scratches or minor rust spots. Or dirt--that can be your best friend as dirty bikes sell cheap.

    I'm sure I'm forgetting something.

    Most of us assume with any old bike that it will need new brake pads, tires and tubes, cables, grease in wheel hubs, bottom bracket, etc. Having a bike shop do that can quickly add up into the hundreds, so any regular on this forum knows how to do their own work. In fact it's part of the fun.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes! There are several threads about the Ironman here--as you'll see it's highly regarded.
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    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    FYI, upon a closer look at the photos, that is a 1989, which would have been all Suntour GPX. Therefore the RD and wheels are all replacement parts. The paint on the stays is scuffed, but luckily the area around the crankset, the bottom bracket, is not rusty at all. There is a tendency of some Ironman's to rust in that area.

    Bring a tape measure and measure from the center of crank to the seat bolt for frame size.

    Here is a higher resolution photo of mine. With a large or iPad retina display, you can see every detail. The bar tape will probably go white.
    Last edited by oddjob2; 02-18-14 at 09:32 AM.
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  14. #14
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chicago Al View Post
    From the other thread (and this is where it belonged anyway), re checking the bike out:

    Suggest you just peruse the forum history or start a new thread. (But be careful about revealing where you are---bikes 'outed' here have been known to disappear quickly.)

    Just a quick checklist:

    Look for frame damage, which would show dents or creases in the tubing, sometimes just a ripple or crack in the paint. Usually in front. That's a dealbreaker, unless the bike is priced fairly for just the parts.

    Check seatpost and stem to make sure they're not frozen/oxidized in place. You'll need the right metric allen keys for this. For the stem, loosen the allen, then rap on the top sharply, stem should come free. For the seatpost, just loosening the binder bolt and maybe a bit of pressure should do it. Both problems are common and while they can be overcome are pretty close to a dealbreaker--because you don't know how much work it'll take to fix them.

    Are wheels straight when you spin them? Does everything turn smoothly? Brakes not grabbing right and shifters not working right are minor issues, usually just adjustments or cable replacements, but can be ways to bargain price down.

    Don't worry about superficial scratches or minor rust spots. Or dirt--that can be your best friend as dirty bikes sell cheap.

    I'm sure I'm forgetting something.

    Most of us assume with any old bike that it will need new brake pads, tires and tubes, cables, grease in wheel hubs, bottom bracket, etc. Having a bike shop do that can quickly add up into the hundreds, so any regular on this forum knows how to do their own work. In fact it's part of the fun.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes! There are several threads about the Ironman here--as you'll see it's highly regarded.
    I was sure I was forgetting something too! And there it is.

    OP just a little disclaimer: I'm not in the Ironman club I've got the much cooler and less culty Centurion Turbo.

    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    FYI, upon a closer look at the photos, that is a 1989, which would have been all Suntour GPX. Therefore the RD and wheels are all replacement parts. The paint on the stays is scuffed, but luckily the area around the crankset, the bottom bracket, is not rusty at all. There is a tendency of some Ironman's to rust in that area.

    Bring a tape measure and measure from the center of crank to the seat bolt for frame size.

    Here is a higher resolution photo of mine. The bar tape will probably go white.
    Gorgeous.. is that in riding condition or cleaned up for photo op?
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    Senior Member browngw's Avatar
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    Not trying to rain on your parade, but even though it is a great looking bike and excellent value to the right person, is it a good choice for a commuter bike?
    If I was new to bikes and chose this to ride to work I think I would be disappointed. No fenders, no racks, aggressive position, DT shifters. There are lots better choices. Buy this one to resell and finance an appropriate commuter.
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    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    I was sure I was forgetting something too! And there it is.

    OP just a little disclaimer: I'm not in the Ironman club I've got the much cooler and less culty Centurion Turbo.


    Gorgeous.. is that in riding condition or cleaned up for photo op?
    Riding condition, thank you! I don't have a Turbo, but a nice 1984 Comp TA as a stable mate to the Ironman Expert.

    Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving. Albert Einstein
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  17. #17
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by browngw View Post
    Not trying to rain on your parade, but even though it is a great looking bike and excellent value to the right person, is it a good choice for a commuter bike?
    If I was new to bikes and chose this to ride to work I think I would be disappointed. No fenders, no racks, aggressive position, DT shifters. There are lots better choices. Buy this one to resell and finance an appropriate commuter.
    That's assuming he's doing loaded commuting or road conditions are really bad if so, like you said he can flip it for something that works.
    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    Riding condition, thank you! I don't have a Turbo, but a nice 1984 Comp TA as a stable mate to the Ironman Expert.

    Pic quality is not nearly as good obviously So is the Comp done or does it just sit around bar tapeless?
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    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    Pic quality is not nearly as good obviously So is the Comp done or does it just sit around bar tapeless?
    It's got the original silvery Benneto tape on the bars. I like your brifters on the Turbo. Curious about the stem too.
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  19. #19
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    It's got the original silvery Benneto tape on the bars. I like your brifters on the Turbo. Curious about the stem too.
    That is near impossible to see that tape in that pic! The brifters are A070's 2x7 modern and under 100 shipped, I picked them because they're black and I didn't like the looks of RSX, or the shifting of 105 8 speed on a 7 speed 600 tri color groupset, the stem is another concession it's actually an origin 8 with the hidden anchor bolt, I really had wanted one of the old Ultegra stems of a similar design but I don't think they ever came in black.

    http://www.amazon.com/Shimano-ST-A07.../dp/B007Q4MM1I

    http://www.amazon.com/Origin8-ULTIM-...=origin+8+stem

    If you don't mind I'm also curious what group mix that is on the Comp?
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    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    That is near impossible to see that tape in that pic! The brifters are A070's 2x7 modern and under 100 shipped, I picked them because they're black and I didn't like the looks of RSX, or the shifting of 105 8 speed on a 7 speed 600 tri color groupset, the stem is another concession it's actually an origin 8 with the hidden anchor bolt, I really had wanted one of the old Ultegra stems of a similar design but I don't think they ever came in black.

    http://www.amazon.com/Shimano-ST-A07.../dp/B007Q4MM1I

    http://www.amazon.com/Origin8-ULTIM-...=origin+8+stem

    If you don't mind I'm also curious what group mix that is on the Comp?
    Full Shimano Tricolor
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  21. #21
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    Full Shimano Tricolor
    8 speed? And the crank doesn't look tricolor or is that a model I know not of yet? I could see the RD/FD were shimano just not which models. Very cool bike though man, must be very nice being able to pick out keepers from the flipper fleet eh?
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    Member zs3889's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    To be perfectly frank, from the pics you can't go wrong giving the guy his asking price unless he's a master flimflammer.. you'll do fine. Do check back in though and let us know how it goes.


    Left side is your front gears, right side is the rear. It'll be obvious on the other part, the shifter will be in a position, note it and note where the corresponding derailer is on the gears, this is good anyways so you'll also know what gear the bike should be shifting too next.

    Once you have the bike in your possession we can talk about what to do mechanically to it.

    Seat tube measurements are notoriously inaccurate, there's a few different ways to do it and of course lots of people who are just really guessing.

    I think it was already said in this thread, that bike is already setup for someone similar to your measurements so I wouldn't be too concerned.

    Thank you very much, will sure do!



    Quote Originally Posted by Chicago Al View Post
    From the other thread (and this is where it belonged anyway), re checking the bike out:

    Suggest you just peruse the forum history or start a new thread. (But be careful about revealing where you are---bikes 'outed' here have been known to disappear quickly.)


    Most of us assume with any old bike that it will need new brake pads, tires and tubes, cables, grease in wheel hubs, bottom bracket, etc. Having a bike shop do that can quickly add up into the hundreds, so any regular on this forum knows how to do their own work. In fact it's part of the fun.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes! There are several threads about the Ironman here--as you'll see it's highly regarded.

    Yea, I have been looking at some old threads too. Thank you for your advice, and reopening my thread, will continue all the discussion here from now on.

    And yea, I am totally planning to work on the bike on my own, and I believe it would be really fun.



    Quote Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
    FYI, upon a closer look at the photos, that is a 1989, which would have been all Suntour GPX. Therefore the RD and wheels are all replacement parts. The paint on the stays is scuffed, but luckily the area around the crankset, the bottom bracket, is not rusty at all. There is a tendency of some Ironman's to rust in that area.

    Bring a tape measure and measure from the center of crank to the seat bolt for frame size.

    Here is a higher resolution photo of mine. With a large or iPad retina display, you can see every detail. The bar tape will probably go white.
    Thanks for the photo. OMG I am in love with your bike. Anyway, should the replacement parts be a concern? I mean the bike is 25 years old, I totally understand that some parts don't last that long if the bike was used frequently.


    Quote Originally Posted by browngw View Post
    Not trying to rain on your parade, but even though it is a great looking bike and excellent value to the right person, is it a good choice for a commuter bike?
    If I was new to bikes and chose this to ride to work I think I would be disappointed. No fenders, no racks, aggressive position, DT shifters. There are lots better choices. Buy this one to resell and finance an appropriate commuter.
    Any opinion is welcomed, so thanks! I am not sure if it is a good choice too, but I am not commuting a long distance to work, it would only be 5 miles round trip everyday. And I only bring a small backpack that fits my laptop and some documents, and sometimes my lunch box to work anyway, so a rack is not really required. Depending on the weather, I may add a fender on the bike. But if the road conditions are really bad, I would just take the bus because it is very convenient anyway.

    Plus, I have always liked how road bikes look and always wanted to own one. But the DT shifters is something that I don't prefer.
    Last edited by zs3889; 02-18-14 at 09:13 PM.

  23. #23
    Member zs3889's Avatar
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    Well, after 2 hours round trip on a light rail:




    I'd like to thank everyone who has contributed! I haven't measured the size yet but it fits me perfectly, I am thinking that it's more like 54cm, instead of 52cm. I lowered the seat post significantly until I feel comfortable riding on it. No dents whatsoever on the body, just a lot of superficial scratches as you can see (not very visible in seller's photo) but that doesn't concern me, and the body has very little to almost rust on it, so that's good. Both wheels spin perfectly.

    I left the bike at work, will try to take more photos tomorrow. There are a few things I absolutely need to fix/change on the bike before I ride it again. The handlebars need to be rotated upward for a more upright position. I rode it for 15 minutes after I got it, and my palms (especially the area between my index finger and thumb) were aching due to excessive pressure on it. The red tape on the handlebars needs to be changed immediately, I can't stand looking at it and other people looking at it . The saddle has almost no padding on it and it was hurting my butt so it needs to go. The gears were shifting ok when I was test riding it. But in the 15 minutes of riding I did after that, sometimes when I switch gear, it would run fine and a second later it would be like in between gears. I think I am not used to the gears yet and did not switch the gear completely, letting the chain hang in between gears. Also need a bike helmet and bike lock!

    For the parts that I mentioned (saddle, handlebars tape, helmet, lock), which one would be a better place to purchase them, online (amazon, etc.) or local bike store? I am trying to spend a minimum amount of money of these so I don't need them to be fancy. I want them to be affordable and reliable, not willing to pay for high end bike products, just yet.

  24. #24
    Still learning oddjob2's Avatar
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    The body is called a frame. Reposition the saddle so it is level, your buttocks and hands will feel much better. The cable housing looks old and the shifter cables look rusty. They should be replaced, you can buy those at the LBS. Buy a Park AWS 1c allen tool as your first tool.

    Rei.com, look at outlet deals on helmets, saddles. Free ship on $50 or free shipping, store pickup. The in store service is cheap too and they can redo your cables. This ought to be done when you get new bar tape.

    checkout Nashbar.com, but they charge for shipping. If you are getting a pair of tires too, try niagaracycle.com, free ship if you spend $100.

    Congratulations and enjoy.
    Last edited by oddjob2; 02-19-14 at 04:14 AM.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving. Albert Einstein
    2014 Additions: 1985 Trek 560, 1992 Trek Multitrack 700 (my 2nd), 1994 Trek Carbon 2200, Peugeot PX-10, 1981 Schwinn Voyager, 1989 Bridgestone RB-1

  25. #25
    Senior Member Chicago Al's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zs3889 View Post
    Well, after 2 hours round trip on a light rail:




    I'd like to thank everyone who has contributed! I haven't measured the size yet but it fits me perfectly, I am thinking that it's more like 54cm, instead of 52cm. I lowered the seat post significantly until I feel comfortable riding on it. No dents whatsoever on the body, just a lot of superficial scratches as you can see (not very visible in seller's photo) but that doesn't concern me, and the body has very little to almost rust on it, so that's good. Both wheels spin perfectly.

    I left the bike at work, will try to take more photos tomorrow. There are a few things I absolutely need to fix/change on the bike before I ride it again. The handlebars need to be rotated upward for a more upright position. I rode it for 15 minutes after I got it, and my palms (especially the area between my index finger and thumb) were aching due to excessive pressure on it. The red tape on the handlebars needs to be changed immediately, I can't stand looking at it and other people looking at it . The saddle has almost no padding on it and it was hurting my butt so it needs to go. The gears were shifting ok when I was test riding it. But in the 15 minutes of riding I did after that, sometimes when I switch gear, it would run fine and a second later it would be like in between gears. I think I am not used to the gears yet and did not switch the gear completely, letting the chain hang in between gears. Also need a bike helmet and bike lock!

    For the parts that I mentioned (saddle, handlebars tape, helmet, lock), which one would be a better place to purchase them, online (amazon, etc.) or local bike store? I am trying to spend a minimum amount of money of these so I don't need them to be fancy. I want them to be affordable and reliable, not willing to pay for high end bike products, just yet.


    Bike looks great, and I think you're right about 54...mine was a 52 and I remember the head tube being shorter. Oddjob is right about parts and fit, of course. I bet there's an REI near you, and they sometimes have great sales, or even cheap returned parts. Nothing specifically for vintage bikes though. You might look for a local bike co-op for a shop to work in and learn from.

    The bars should certainly be rotated up a bit. I hesitate to say this but if you're really new to riding a road bike you may not be aware: there are at least three common positions for holding drop bars: on the tops/flats, on the hoods, and in the drops, the lowest position. If you get your position just right there shouldn't be too much pressure on your hands, and what there is can be relieved by changing hand position. Also of course there are gloves, and some bar tape has more cushion. There are even thin gel pads you can put under the tape. Saddles are a very personal thing and I suggest you try out several until you find something that works well.

    Really a sharp bike at a good price. Even if you ultimately decide you want something else, it should be 'liquid' at what you paid for it.
    I never think I have hit hard, unless it rebounds.

    - Dr Samuel Johnson

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