I visited a nearby LBS for the first time this week. It seems that the bulk of his business is selling older bikes that he's bought or been given over the years. Sometimes he fixes them up with new parts and/or tires, and others are pretty much in as-found condition. He seems to go for the old Chicago Schwinns, most of which were great bikes in their day.
Well, I've always wanted a Raleigh. The English Raleighs seem different to me than most of the bikes that would have been available at the time. Something classy, like wearing a tweed sportcoat or something.
One of them's a late 70s Grand Prix. Judging by what I've found about those bikes, this one may be one of the Asian-made models. It's in decent shape, with some paint scrapes. It has 15 speeds and new tires, and he's asking $125. More than I'd like to pay, but maybe not unreasonable.
The other's a Sprite 27. Not sure how old, but it's stamped and stickered "Made In England." Same condition on the paint and showing some rust on the chrome. Asking price of $60.
This is subjective, but are those prices reasonable? This might not be a practical purchase, but at the same time the Sprite seems to have a nice upright posture.
Does anyone out there have and use one of these bikes?
The Grand Prix sounds like it's been upgraded if it's a 15-speed. I'll assume someone swapped in a triple alloy crankset for the original double steel cottered. If so, and if it has alloy wheels (instead of the original steel), then $125 isn't a bad price. The Sprite 27 will be a fair amount heavier than the Grand Prix with steel 27" rims and awful Huret derailleurs. I don't think $60 is a bad price if the issues are only cosmetic. Ride them both and see which one calls out to you.
It's a 15-spd with sidepull brakes. We went over there to get some brake pads, and I got to get a good look at it. I can understand upgrading the gears, but why would someone put sidepull brakes on one of those bikes? That's kind of ruined it for me.