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  1. #1
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    Columbia "The Streak" - Road/Track(?)

    Hello.

    I hope someone can give me more info on this bad boy



    It's a gray frame with some yellow and brown decals, "The Streak" written across the top bar. It originally had a one-piece crank on it w/ 3 chainrings, but I can't remember how many cogs the rear cassette had before it was stripped down. Not sure what the original handlebar looked like, but I think it may have been a drop bar. Any ideas on the history of this bike, approx. year of manufacture, etc?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Villainous huerro's Avatar
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    I don't know any specifics about that model, but the stamped dropouts crimped into the frame suggest a pretty low end model. I would imagine high tensile steal rather than Cro-moly. I would imagine that it originally had 10 speeds, stem shifters and drop bars, but that is only a guess based on similar bikes I've seen.

    It looks like someone has added some decent parts to make it a fixed gear. They are probably worth much more than the frame itself.

    EDIT: Oh, and of course, Welcome to BF!

  3. #3
    MFA jjvw's Avatar
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    That reminds me of my first fixed gear build. I had a cheap frame with expensive parts waiting to be switched to something better.

    That Columbia is a single speed BTW. Note the freewheel.
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  4. #4
    Run What 'Ya Brung bonechilling's Avatar
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    Columbia bikes were sold primarily in department stores, right? Anyway, huerro is right, it's just a cheap Hi-Ten frame. Nothing special, the 1979 equivalent to a Wal-Mart NEXT, I'd say.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bonechilling View Post
    Columbia bikes were sold primarily in department stores, right? Anyway, huerro is right, it's just a cheap Hi-Ten frame. Nothing special, the 1979 equivalent to a Wal-Mart NEXT, I'd say.
    Columbia was one of the oldest brands of bicycles. I believe it was the Pope Manufacturing Company's (the largest bicycle manufacturer in the world back then) primary brand around 1900-1910, and goes back to the days of Ordinary Bicycles. Of course by the 1930's it was just another kid's bicycle as were almost all American bikes. Anyway it is surely a proud name in bicycle history.
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  6. #6
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    Yup, the frame must be steel, I'll double check the stickers on it, but I'm pretty sure it's not Cro-Mo. I think when I picked it up it did have a 6 or 10 spd cassette on it, but I put a Shimano 17-tooth BMX cog. The Ultegra crank took a while to get in there, the frame is meant for one-piece bottom brackets, so it also has one of those American-to-Euro adapters in there. It crank was a triple, i took the biggest ring off.

    And yes, the frame itself was only like $20 while the parts tally up to around $200. I'm pretty sure that Ultegra was a sick deal on Nashbar, it was 5-8 yr old model that I found on clearance.

    Thanks again for the help, you guys are quick on the replies!

  7. #7
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    The shop where I worked in the seventies sold Raleighs, Peugeots and Columbias.

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    I've got an old 70s Road Columbia bike and I am interested in how I can convert it to a single-speed and/or upgrade some of the parts. Does anyone know where to start looking? How can I find out more information about this vintage roadie?

    There are patches of rust under the original leather seat, and at the top of the original fork and where the stem meets the frame. It's got some weird metal stem contraption -- not the sleek angled one-piece ones we see today.

    I'd also like to convert it to single-speed, since the shifters seem to have a problem: when I changed my tube recently, shifting gears makes the rear wheel torque out of alignment. Anyone else experience this?

  9. #9
    Elitest Murray Owner Mos6502's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddot View Post
    I've got an old 70s Road Columbia bike and I am interested in how I can convert it to a single-speed and/or upgrade some of the parts. Does anyone know where to start looking? How can I find out more information about this vintage roadie?

    There are patches of rust under the original leather seat, and at the top of the original fork and where the stem meets the frame. It's got some weird metal stem contraption -- not the sleek angled one-piece ones we see today.

    I'd also like to convert it to single-speed, since the shifters seem to have a problem: when I changed my tube recently, shifting gears makes the rear wheel torque out of alignment. Anyone else experience this?
    Nobody has touched this thread in a year. You should have started a new thread.

    It sounds like you have a lower end model than what is in the original post in this thread.

    Come back with pics. And make a new thread, and I'm sure we can help you.

    As for your problem, you probably put the wheel too far back in the dropouts, and the chain is not long enough - pulling the wheel forward when you shift into the low (big) gears. Also, your axel nuts are probably not tight enough.

  10. #10
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    fun to add to the conversation 6-5 years later. i just found a "Streak" at a yard sale for 75 bucks, untouched. 12 gears and clean. Makes sense that it might have been a department store bike...the guy who sold it to me wasn't a cyclist. when i asked if i could test it out, he looked at me funny and said What for?

    i look forward to feeling it out.

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