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Old 11-29-07, 07:34 PM   #1
redneckwes
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Calling all Motobecane/Vitus 172 Experts: UPDATE

Like I need another Bike..........But...



I've been scanning e-bay for awhile for a Motobecane Grand Touring, without any success. However, a few days ago this one came up. It was local, and I got it for $65. The Forged Suntour dropouts are what sold me. But I can find no reference to the model. It's probably a "Super Touring" Though it looks for all the world like "Luther Touring"


Front wheel is a Concave Weinmann rim laced to a Normandy High flange hub, dated 08 80. Rear is a Wobler "Super Champion" Rim laced to a low flange hub thats unmarked as far as I can tell. Tube sticker states Vitus 172, good stuff? It's a nice light frame, lookes like the remains of "Double Butted" on the decal.

Size is 23" fits me just right too, I'm thinking a Honey Brooks B-17 and some V.O. fenders are in it's future.



I'd like to find out a few things..
#1 Does 1980 seem like a reasonable date for this machine? Suntour VX Derailleurs seem right for an '80.

#2 Is Vitus 172 decent stuff? How does it compare to 531?

#3 Anybody have any early 80's Motobecane catalogs scanned or online?

#4 Factory wheelset, Normandy/Weinmann concaves or Wobler/??'s anyone have any ideas??

#5 and what does a complete Vitus 172 decal look like?



Thanks in advance!
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Last edited by redneckwes; 03-02-08 at 01:28 PM. Reason: new information.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:45 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by redneckwes View Post
Like I need another Bike..........But...



I've been scanning e-bay for awhile for a Motobecane Grand Touring, without any success. However, a few days ago this one came up. It was local, and I got it for $65. The Forged Suntour dropouts are what sold me. But I can find no reference to the model. It's probably a "Super Touring" Though it looks for all the world like "Luther Touring"
Yes, it's definitely a Super Touring, which as far as I can tell, is an old spec Grand Touring after Motobecane downgraded the Grand Touring to newer specs (i.e., the old Grand Touring was Vitus 172, the downgraded Grand Touring was Vitus 888, and the Super touring was added to the lineup, made of "ta-da"-- Vitus 172.).

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Front wheel is a Concave Weinmann rim laced to a Normandy High flange hub, dated 08 80. Rear is a Wobler "Super Champion" Rim laced to a low flange hub thats unmarked as far as I can tell. Tube sticker states Vitus 172, good stuff? It's a nice light frame, lookes like the remains of "Double Butted" on the decal.
Yes, a good frame, but the bike is in dog-rough condition. Could really use some TLC. And as you've noticed, the parts have been carelessly replaced. Notice the two different crank-arms (yes, I was watching this bike)?

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Originally Posted by redneckwes View Post
Size is 23" fits me just right too, I'm thinking a Honey Brooks B-17 and some V.O. fenders are in it's future.



I'd like to find out a few things..
#1 Does 1980 seem like a reasonable date for this machine? Suntour VX Derailleurs seem right for an '80.
I think it's around there. The Grand Touring was downgraded around 1980 or later, so 1980 or later.

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#2 Is Vitus 172 decent stuff? How does it compare to 531?
Yes, it's good stuff. It's not as expensive as 531, so it was used on mid-level French models, but should be as good as 531.

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#3 Anybody have any early 80's Motobecane catalogs scanned or online?

#4 Factory wheelset, Normandy/Weinmann concaves or Wobler/??'s anyone have any ideas??
Probably Normandy/Weinmann.

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#5 and what does a complete Vitus 172 decal look like?


Fill in the missing parts with your imagination-- there's enough there to recreate it-- and you've got a complete decal. I have a 172 decal, but it's damaged too, and no camera besides...

Last edited by Blue Order; 11-29-07 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:51 PM   #3
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Blue Order,
Thanks for the help!

Yeah, she has a few ....signs of age, but no worse than most of my projects, and it's better than quite a few of them. You want ugly, I'll show you my PH10L!

I gave it a close look, despite the abuse, it's nothing that goes deep. Not sure what I'll do about that crank set. Probably swap the whole thing for one in the 170 range and rid myself of the mis-matched arms


A bit of nosing found this...
http://www.classicrendezvous.com/Fra...us_history.htm
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Old 11-29-07, 07:55 PM   #4
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Blue Order,
Thanks for the help!
I just revised my post to correct some errors-- specifically, 888 was a downgrade from 172, not an upgrade (thanks to T-Mar's posts in the archives. ).
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Old 11-29-07, 08:17 PM   #5
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Here's a mixte Super Touring, you can see that it's a 1980 and has Weinmann rims...
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Old 11-29-07, 08:32 PM   #6
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Heres a guy selling vitus decal sets on ebay:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...ayphotohosting

I might order a set for my Grand Jubilie...
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Old 11-29-07, 08:39 PM   #7
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Ahhh.. Now that helps!

I have a High flange hub in the stash to match the front, now it looks like I'm on the trail of a Weinman Concave rim! No loss on the rear wheel, though I'll save the Wolber rim. The freewheel on it is rusted solid.

Blue Order, I hope it was not you I bid against, I thought some of the other forum members might be watching this one. I believe I won because of the cost to ship. Well, that and it's condition.
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Old 11-29-07, 08:42 PM   #8
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Old 11-29-07, 09:15 PM   #9
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Ahhh.. Now that helps!

I have a High flange hub in the stash to match the front, now it looks like I'm on the trail of a Weinman Concave rim! No loss on the rear wheel, though I'll save the Wobler rim. The freewheel on it is rusted solid.

Blue Order, I hope it was not you I bid against, I thought some of the other forum members might be watching this one. I believe I won because of the cost to ship. Well, that and it's condition.
No, it wasn't me. I briefly considered bidding, but between the restoration work this bike would need, and having too many bikes already, I decided I didn't need it.
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Old 11-30-07, 09:57 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the help folks, I'll be buying a set of those reproduction Vitus decals soon.

A link to the auction if anyone is interested,

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...MEWN:IT&ih=020

And if anyone has a decent used 36H Weinmann concave in 27" they could spare, please let me know.
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Old 02-12-08, 10:40 PM   #11
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The final version looks better. And making decals is a p.i.t.a.

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Old 02-12-08, 10:50 PM   #12
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The final version looks better. And making decals is a p.i.t.a.

Nice job! Can you make more?
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Old 02-12-08, 10:55 PM   #13
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Nice job! Can you make more?

Thanks,
Probably, I goofed up and made the "Vitus" gray before I got the white background decal paper. Also the Yellow should be more gold. I made it on waterslide paper, I don't like peel and stick very much on bike frames.
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Old 02-12-08, 10:57 PM   #14
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Well, I'd like to buy some from you. I'll PM you.
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Old 02-13-08, 12:42 AM   #15
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Getting closer. Wish I had waited untill I had this one done before I put the decal on the frame...ohh well.
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Old 03-02-08, 12:49 PM   #16
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Well, it's sunny today and I have a new camera. So I thought it might be a good time for a few updated photos.

1980 Motobecane "Super Touring", battered warhorse of a touring bike in the midst of a "working refurbishment."





You can see the run in the clearcoat in this one.

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Old 03-02-08, 04:18 PM   #17
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Nice job! We have to talk this Summer!
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Old 03-02-08, 04:41 PM   #18
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WOW!

I can't believe how good you've got it looking! It was so clapped out when it was up for sale, and now it's looking SO sweet!

Good job!
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Old 03-02-08, 10:52 PM   #19
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Thanks gents, if I get some decent weather(lol, not likely) I might get to try it out this week.

More pics as the build continues.
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Old 03-03-08, 06:23 AM   #20
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I have a Jubile Sport of similar vintage in similar shape. Great for riding, but needs some touchup paint. Were you able to find touchup paint? if so, where?
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Old 03-03-08, 08:16 AM   #21
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I have a Jubile Sport of similar vintage in similar shape. Great for riding, but needs some touchup paint. Were you able to find touchup paint? if so, where?
I tried to find touch up paint, but I had absolutely no luck. I also tried mixing paint to match, but because it's metalic I could never get it to dry at the correct shade. So what you see there is a complete repaint with a pretty close match with DUpli-color Truck and SUV paint from an autoparts store, I also used their clear coat.
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Old 04-10-08, 02:33 PM   #22
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Well, after sitting on the workstand 90% done for the last month. Today the Motobecane is rideable.



Not finished, but rideable. I need to tighten up the cables and make a few adjustments.. I HATE the crankset I used on it. (Cheap 70's Shimano unit), and I need to find a way around the JIS taper spindle in the BB. Other than that, it's begging for a Black B/17 to replace to somewhat ragged Selle Italia, and a set of SKS fenders, and some Lyotard 36's with clips and straps. .

Vitus 172, is wickedly light, I weighed the bike in the most un-scientific possible way, (Standing on the bathroom scale) and the whole rigs as it sits is in the area of 22lbs. Pretty shocking to me.

This is also my rolling tribute to Sheldon, I never had much chance to communicate with him, but I sure did spend many hours reading his work.

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Old 04-10-08, 03:05 PM   #23
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Nice! It reminds me that I want a randonneur and I should have kept my simplex retrofriction clamp ons and just converted my fixed gear but then I wouldn't have a fixed hear and..... i think I need more bikes.
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Old 04-10-08, 03:21 PM   #24
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You need to make those 'Sheldon' decals available.
My Moto Grand Sprint awaits on Cape Cod. Can't wait to see it.
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Old 04-10-08, 04:43 PM   #25
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You need to make those 'Sheldon' decals available.
I agree with this wholeheartedly. I would put one on the singlespeed I'm building in a heartbeat.
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