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Old 12-01-07, 06:48 PM   #1
Mos6502
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Skyway 3 speed (bridgestone?)

So I picked up my find today! What an intriguing bicycle. It seems fairly typical for a Japanese bike of this era - but considering just how few of those there are in the states, I figure it's well worth hanging on to.


The seat post has an internal expander. Information online about Skyway bicycles is scant - but I take it that they were either made by, or absorbed by Bridgestone.

interesting detail.

Raleighesque chainwheel - very unraleighesque chainguard.

Cool headbadge.

Appears to be from the mid 60s. Very well made, and almost perplexingly light. Anybody got more info on Skyway (BTW, as is probably obvious, this Skyway has nothing to do with the other Skyway that makes BMX parts)

Last edited by Mos6502; 12-01-07 at 08:08 PM.
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Old 12-01-07, 07:49 PM   #2
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I don't know anything about the brand, but that is a cool head badge. Makes me want to go bowling.

Neal
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Old 12-02-07, 07:51 AM   #3
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I watched a girl's 3-speed Skyway on ebay get no bidders with a starting price of $25. The seller also had a lot of Raleigh 3 speeds & he said that this bike shifted and rode better than them.

Probably not enough people have heard of them for there to be much of a market. That bike looks very good & comfortable. How does it shift & ride compared to other vintage 3 speeds?
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Old 12-02-07, 05:27 PM   #4
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I haven't had a chance to ride it, as I don't have my bicycle pump at this house, and I need to repair the brake handles. But given as light as it is, I'm sure it's probably lively for a 3 speed (though the frame angles are also slack, probably no steeper than 70 degrees). I did notice that the seat is extremely firm. It's like the old American seats with a metal base, but instead of soft foam (which eventually squishes all out of the way so that you're sitting on bare metal) it's packed with a very firm thin layer. The handlebars are also not swept back as much as on English or American bikes (kind of more French in that regard).
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Old 12-07-07, 08:01 PM   #5
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So I got a chance to ride it. It rides really well, definitely better than a Raleigh in my opinion. Despite the slack frame, it felt surprisingly nimble in handling (at least more so than I had preconceived anyway).

I took a magnet to it, and found out what I suspsected. Those funky looking frame lugs are not lugs at all - but aluminum castings. This old Skyway uses a Technart frame like the later Kabukis do. Steel tubes, joined by aluminum castings (I hesitate to say lugs, since the bottom bracket is all one casting), this maybe why it feels strangely light.
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Old 12-07-07, 10:03 PM   #6
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It has the C.Itoh/Bridgestone seat post with the expander nut and works like a quill stem. The aluminum lugs were also a feature of C.Itoh. Here's a C.Itoh frame I got rid of a couple of years ago. In addition to the cast aluminum "lugs", the main triangle was also aluminum.


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Old 12-09-07, 02:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noah Scape View Post
It has the C.Itoh/Bridgestone seat post with the expander nut and works like a quill stem. The aluminum lugs were also a feature of C.Itoh. Here's a C.Itoh frame I got rid of a couple of years ago. In addition to the cast aluminum "lugs", the main triangle was also aluminum.



Kabuki, which used the same frame building technique made one with stainless steel tubes in the main triangle.
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Old 12-09-07, 06:03 PM   #8
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At first I thought this was just a nice-looking roadster clone, but the frame construction puts it in a whole different category!
One more entry in the Seemingly Infinite Variety of Three Speeds Contest here at C&V. Nice catch!
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