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-   -   The Unofficial Univega Appreciation Thread! (http://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vintage/374185-unofficial-univega-appreciation-thread.html)

grinningfool 09-21-08 07:13 PM

I just got this Sportour from a craigslist seller for $75. Great shape except for the brake lever hoods and bar tape. I'm getting a B-17 for it, and will be doing the bar tape and hoods also.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v2...e/DSC00789.jpg

Skylar 10-20-08 09:18 PM

My 5 dollar Univega Alpina 5.5 MTB
 
4 Attachment(s)
Saved this from the crusher today. The right crank is so badly bent it was rubbing the rear tire.

Has some specialized straight bars on it and basic shimano components. I know absolutely nothing about
this bike except it's a Mountain Bike, and there's almost nothing on google about it.

ricebowl 10-22-08 02:52 AM

Craigslist purchase, only thing I dislike about the bike no eyelets for a rack.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3265/...333cb60c_o.jpg

banjo_mole 10-24-08 12:30 PM

http://i49.photobucket.com/albums/f2...g?t=1224872534
http://i49.photobucket.com/albums/f2...g?t=1224872539
This is my Univega, which I love. It's a Maxima Sport.

Does anyone know a way I could get new decals for it, as mine are pretty scratched up?
The PC decal printer paper isn't really what I'm looking for. Prefferably just old, unused decals or something... That'd be cool. I'd love to get my favorite bike restored!

Umm, also, what's the big problem with the "suicide" brake levers? I think they work great and haven't killed me yet...
And what's the problem with the handlebar stem shifters? They seem more convenient than downtube shifters...

I love my Univega.


PS- Does anyone know anything about that seat it has? It had a sticker on its bottom saying, "URCELAY, LIBAR(?), MADE IN SPAIN." I haven't seen anything on it.

Thanks!

-NmmS

banjo_mole 10-24-08 12:35 PM

Actually, the saddle says, "URCELAY/EIBAR/MADE IN SPAIN...

SpeedFreek 10-25-08 11:19 AM

WOW! I had no idea Univega's were such a cult fav! I had the pure luck to have been working at a bike shop in San Marino, CA in the mid 70's. It was amom and pop shop, but they retired, and sold it to Bob Olson, who had bought the old Jones bicycle store in Long Beach. This made his fourth store, and they needed staff, and I got hired. Jones sold Italvega's, and Motobecane, Raleigh, and some other stuff. I remember going to Ben Lawee's warehouse with Eric Olson, Bob's son, and was overwhelmed with all the stuff he had accumulated over the years. i got to know Ben pretty well, because he was just that way. Very easy to get to know. Plus, I had just started racing USCF Senior 4, and he liked that. I also remember he had a daughter, about 15 then, and she was absolutely beautiful!! Very nice,as well. I remember when the first Univega's came in, and we opened the box, and I think it was a Nuovo Record, and we were impressed with the frame quality, and the component selection. A nice machine, especially for the price. Odd point. Ben kept the Italian model names from the Italvega days. Pretty cool. Italvega. "Vega" being the brightest star in the sky, built in Italy. "Ital-Vega" Switched to The Brightest Star in the Universe. "Uni-Vega". I am sorry to hear he died, it makes me feel old at 53. I also feel fortunate to have been so close to his passion for riding, and he was a pretty cool guy. The things you get to experience growing up in L.A. makes people who haven't lived there think you are making it up, but they say truth is stranger than fiction! I bought the firstlowend MTB he offered, and it was NOT made for offroad! It would be better on a bike path, not a mountain single-track. The only Univega I ever had, but not a good example of what he did offer. Generally, the bikes were good, if not great! Later.

robtown 10-25-08 12:33 PM

I bought this Sportour NOS a couple years ago for my son. He's put 20 miles on it - tops. I've recently got him a newer 2000 Jamis. The Sportour is sporting new 700c wheels and a the saddle off the Jamis. I sold it to the dad of a college student who had previously bought a bike off me. The dad wants to get back into riding - so I'm hoping the bike will be used now.

http://img252.imageshack.us/img252/8...3064pe0.th.jpghttp://img207.imageshack.us/img207/5...3063az0.th.jpghttp://img54.imageshack.us/img54/6284/1003061se1.th.jpghttp://img401.imageshack.us/img401/5...3065mv2.th.jpg
http://img340.imageshack.us/img340/2...3070kj6.th.jpghttp://img512.imageshack.us/img512/3...3071sr8.th.jpghttp://img184.imageshack.us/img184/69/1003072ek2.th.jpghttp://img401.imageshack.us/img401/9...3068sf4.th.jpghttp://img207.imageshack.us/img207/9...3069zu0.th.jpg

BengeBoy 10-25-08 12:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SpeedFreek (Post 7730949)
WOW! I had no idea Univega's were such a cult fav! I had the pure luck to have been working at a bike shop in San Marino, CA in the mid 70's. It was amom and pop shop, but they retired, and sold it to Bob Olson, who had bought the old Jones bicycle store in Long Beach. This made his fourth store, and they needed staff, and I got hired. Jones sold Italvega's, and Motobecane, Raleigh, and some other stuff. I remember going to Ben Lawee's warehouse with Eric Olson, Bob's son, and was overwhelmed with all the stuff he had accumulated over the years. i got to know Ben pretty well, because he was just that way. Very easy to get to know. Plus, I had just started racing USCF Senior 4, and he liked that. I also remember he had a daughter, about 15 then, and she was absolutely beautiful!! Very nice,as well. I remember when the first Univega's came in, and we opened the box, and I think it was a Nuovo Record, and we were impressed with the frame quality, and the component selection. A nice machine, especially for the price. Odd point. Ben kept the Italian model names from the Italvega days. Pretty cool. Italvega. "Vega" being the brightest star in the sky, built in Italy. "Ital-Vega" Switched to The Brightest Star in the Universe. "Uni-Vega". I am sorry to hear he died, it makes me feel old at 53. I also feel fortunate to have been so close to his passion for riding, and he was a pretty cool guy. The things you get to experience growing up in L.A. makes people who haven't lived there think you are making it up, but they say truth is stranger than fiction! I bought the firstlowend MTB he offered, and it was NOT made for offroad! It would be better on a bike path, not a mountain single-track. The only Univega I ever had, but not a good example of what he did offer. Generally, the bikes were good, if not great! Later.

Great post, thanks for sharing.

I bought my first two Univegas when they were new (in the early 80's). I thought Ben did a great job putting together frames and component packages that made sense (good / better / best); picking colors; and even picking names. Obviously the frames have held up well; my Univega is my daily commuter and is fantastic.

banjo_mole 10-25-08 01:13 PM

Here's a BREATHTAKING Univega on Ebay, a "Super-Special" with a full Campy Super Record groupset.

A beatiful Univega.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Beautiful-Blue-U...1%7C240%3A1318

BengeBoy 10-25-08 01:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by banjo_mole (Post 7731380)
Here's a BREATHTAKING Univega on Ebay, a "Super-Special" with a full Campy Super Record groupset.

A beatiful Univega.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Beautiful-Blue-U...1%7C240%3A1318


Yes, I saw that. Made me wonder (a) what price the seller will eventually get and (b) whether the bike will stay intact or whether it will be purchased based on the value of the components (which appear to be in great shape).

In any case, I am happy it is not my size...

banjo_mole 10-26-08 11:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BengeBoy (Post 7731420)
Yes, I saw that. Made me wonder (a) what price the seller will eventually get and (b) whether the bike will stay intact or whether it will be purchased based on the value of the components (which appear to be in great shape).

In any case, I am happy it is not my size...


Yes, I think I'd be heartbroken if that bike got scrapped and salvaged for its partset. My friend Travis has a CIOCC bike from the 70's with a full set of Campy SR parts in new condition, and he doesn't maintain it at all, it has no kickstand, and he usually just leaves it sitting on his porch. He got it for free and doesn't realize its value. I usually end up taking it from him and cleaning it twice a month, or else it'd be rusted up by now.

But its a nice bike, if I had the money and it was my size, I'd buy it.

That said, does anyone know where old Campy partsets can be found?
I'd like to requip my Univega with 'em.

banjo_mole 11-12-08 12:12 AM

Could anyone tell me...
 
What threading style the Univega bottom brackets have?

I understand the main kinds are Italian, French, and English.

So which BB threading do our bikes have?

Thanks!

-Banjo

grinningfool 11-12-08 05:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by banjo_mole (Post 7835004)
What threading style the Univega bottom brackets have?

I understand the main kinds are Italian, French, and English.

So which BB threading do our bikes have?

Thanks!

-Banjo

Pretty sure they're english thread.

LordBass 11-12-08 07:47 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Someday I'll find a Univega that fits me. I've bought three this year, but all as light fixer-uppers that are a bit too small.

Shame about the Viva Sport 12-speed in particular - it rides fairly quick, is reasonably light, and is absolutely smooth as butter. Would be a brilliant commuter. Had a weak moment on the single speed. It's a touch taller but the spokes are crusty and the brakes rubbish. Not sure yet what to do with it.

RFC 11-12-08 09:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by grinningfool (Post 7514891)
I just got this Sportour from a craigslist seller for $75. Great shape except for the brake lever hoods and bar tape. I'm getting a B-17 for it, and will be doing the bar tape and hoods also.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v2...e/DSC00789.jpg

Hey! That's my bike! It was stolen from my garage in Denver in 1989. How did it get to Maine?

I always liked that color combination very much. Would love to find one sometime.

wrk101 11-14-08 07:07 PM

I picked up a Univega Gran Turismo today. It looks like either a 1982 or a 1983. The seat post has a 1982 date on it. The bike is five speed. It needs a thorough clean up and tune up. Otherwise, it looks pretty solid. Anyone have good luck swapping the 27 inch wheels for 700s? I have a really nice set of 700s available (both a six speed and a seven speed). The brakes appear to have very limited adjustment capability.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3292/...d033dc91f6.jpg

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3169/...5647dda303.jpg

grinningfool 11-14-08 07:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wrk101 (Post 7853630)
I picked up a Univega Gran Turismo today. It looks like either a 1982 or a 1983. The seat post has a 1982 date on it. The bike is five speed. It needs a thorough clean up and tune up. Otherwise, it looks pretty solid. Anyone have good luck swapping the 27 inch wheels for 700s? I have a really nice set of 700s available (both a six speed and a seven speed). The brakes appear to have very limited adjustment capability.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3292/...d033dc91f6.jpg

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3169/...5647dda303.jpg

Interesting, that's the first early 80's Univega I've seen with cantilever brakes.

BengeBoy 11-14-08 07:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wrk101 (Post 7853630)
Anyone have good luck swapping the 27 inch wheels for 700s? I have a really nice set of 700s available (both a six speed and a seven speed). The brakes appear to have very limited adjustment capability.

Would love to know the answer to this as well.

My LBS (which works on lots of old bikes) said "good luck finding brakes that would work" on a 700c conversion for my Gran Turismo.

wrk101 11-14-08 08:10 PM

Maybe my Gran Turismo is older than 1982, given it is only five speed. I'll check the derailleurs for date codes once I tear it down. The bike has a Suntour BL GT RD and a Suntour BL FD which according to the Suntour thread, came out in 1981.

Update: I am sticking with 1982 vintage, as the seat post dated May 82, the SR crankset dated May 82, the FD dated Dec 81 and the RD dated Nov 81.

Serial number on the bike is K346143

vladamiraaron 11-20-08 08:06 AM

3 Attachment(s)
My Univega Gran Turismo...

banjo_mole 11-20-08 10:27 AM

I'm partial to green. That's a pretty one!

Squeazel 11-20-08 11:11 AM

2 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by wrk101 (Post 7853630)
I picked up a Univega Gran Turismo today. (snip) Anyone have good luck swapping the 27 inch wheels for 700s? ....

I swapped out the 27" wheels for 700c on my 1984 Gran Turismo. The brakes were near the end of their adjustment range but it worked just fine. After all, it's only 4 mm different- less than a quarter inch.

Here are pictures of the bike and the front brake after changing to Kool-stops and adjusting. I think I added a little straddle cable length, too, to lower the pads a bit:

Magnus042 11-20-08 12:52 PM

My Gran Tourismo
 
Picked this up a few weeks ago and spent some quality time taking it apart, cleaning it up, and rebuilding. Put on a Brooks Swift, Ergo Bar, Cables/Housing, Pedals. Planning on adding rack and fenders, and putting some touring miles on it.

Can anyone help date it? Serial is I999377

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_eqi-E8Jhxrk/SS...0/IMG_2575.JPG

vladamiraaron 11-20-08 01:06 PM

I swapped mine to 700c. The Canti's reach just fine. Long caliper side pulls are not hard to find if yours hasn't canti studs. Just swap em out, it'll be fine!:thumb:

BengeBoy 11-20-08 01:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vladamiraaron (Post 7887506)
I swapped mine to 700c. The Canti's reach just fine. Long caliper side pulls are not hard to find if yours hasn't canti studs. Just swap em out, it'll be fine!:thumb:

Really? That's good news. My LBS looked at my Gran Turismo and said "no way" on the existing cantilever brakes. I bought a new set of tires and went on my way, though am planning to revisit the issue next time I have to deal with either the hubs, rims, freewheel or tires. With 27 inch tires I just *barely* have enough fender clearance on my bike; 700's would help.


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