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Old 06-02-08, 02:58 PM   #1
DUC_TAPE
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A question for the Vintage road bike guys.

I just recently purchased a used road bike that I had planed on making a cool fixed gear bike. I have asked a few people what the bike may be but no one has any answers, so was hoping someone on here could help me out before I start taking brake and derailer guides off and it is permanently ruined.











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Old 06-02-08, 03:21 PM   #2
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Its hard to tell from the photo provided. Do you have any detail pictures of the rear dropouts, BB and seat tube/seat stay area? Might help narrow down the list of possiblities a bit. Oh, and I would check the BB threading before you cut anything off (personally, I'd leave everything on anyways). Those gold brakes make me think Mafac, which makes me think French, which makes me think French Threaded. And French threaded isn't going to make a fixed conversion very easy.
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Old 06-02-08, 03:22 PM   #3
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You don't give any details about the frame's tubing. As a former custom frame maker I can tell you that the center sections of thin gage Reynolds and Columbus tubing are really thin and VERY fragile. YOur method might depend on how the various attachments were installed on the frame. If silver soldered I would gently remove them with a torch. If brazed with brass that's a dangerous method as 531 tubing can be cracked by repeated heating to brazing temp. I personally wouldn't have the cojones to grind them off. It's yer frame, do with it what you will.
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Old 06-02-08, 03:23 PM   #4
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It would be nothing short of criminal to cut anything off that bike. It has braze on center-pulls a rare french thing and those are almost definitely mafacs and they probably work amazing set up like that. Looks like a simplex SLJ RD as well, it is a high quality and probably rare french machine to be sure.
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Old 06-02-08, 03:27 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by DUC_TAPE View Post
I just recently purchased a used road bike that I had planed on making a cool fixed gear bike. I have asked a few people what the bike may be but no one has any answers, so was hoping someone on here could help me out before I start taking brake and derailer guides off and it is permanently ruined.


First things first Sir: You won't be doing anything to that frame other than destuction, via ripping the guides and the RD hanger. You're probably going to mount a toptube pad anyway, right? Preservation should be the first order of business in all vintage endeavors.

Next up, what you've got: Seems to be a pretty, 70's, French bike. You may want to move along to something else as the French threaded stuff will necessitate Phil Wood BB's, if you're stuck on buying new to outfit the conversion. The headset and seatpost will also probably be sized somewhat oddly.

Third, The front looks as though it's suffered a hit. I'd have the frame looked at before beginning.

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Old 06-02-08, 03:33 PM   #6
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Is it just me, or does it appear to have a front derailleur hanger?
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Old 06-02-08, 03:37 PM   #7
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Is it just me, or does it appear to have a front derailleur hanger?
And two bottle sets of cage mounts and under BB cable routing, which buts details of build date all over the map. It would suggest 1980s build date or perhaps modification date.

Personally I would love to find a bike in my size with braze-ons for center-pulls. I need to learn how to use a torch and start doing my own modifications.
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Old 06-02-08, 03:44 PM   #8
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And two bottle sets of cage mounts and under BB cable routing, which buts details of build date all over the map. It would suggest 1980s build date or perhaps modification date.

Personally I would love to find a bike in my size with braze-ons for center-pulls. I need to learn how to use a torch and start doing my own modifications.

Excellent point! Leave that frame alone! Lousy candidate for fixed conversion! Extremely rare brake braze-on's make the frae far more useful and valuable to a vintage multi-speed rider!

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Old 06-02-08, 03:50 PM   #9
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Is that an SR Apex crankset?

Late 70s Motobecane, maybe? Gitane?

I agree with those who think this frame is a better candidate for conservation than conversion.
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Old 06-02-08, 03:52 PM   #10
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Is that an SR Apex crankset?

Late 70s Motobecane, maybe? Gitane?

I agree with those who think this frame is a better candidate for conservation than conversion.
I think it is a sugino might comp series crank. I would guess this to be a smaller manufacturer.
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Old 06-02-08, 03:58 PM   #11
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EDIT: With the new photos, they are certainly not Prugnats.

Those brazed-on brake mounts lead me to believe the same as cuda2k - the Mafac brakes are original. It was certainly never made for cantilevers, and the Simplex/Mafac combination is unique enough to be original.

I'll put my money on a high-end French road machine - not a genuine racing machine from the look of that seattube geometry, but not a tourer either because of the lack of eyelets.

That said, don't even dare cutting off anything. I'm not saying that it is extremely valuable, but I wouldn't be surprised if you could do an equal swap of this machine for a genuine track frameset or partial track build which would be much more suited to your intentions.

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Old 06-02-08, 04:24 PM   #12
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It is certainly a strange mix. The braze on centerpulls and the geometry say touring bike, but the Simplex rear derailleur is for a close ratio cogset...pivot center between the jockey wheels.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:00 PM   #13
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What we have here gentlemen is a real mutt. Appears to have had quite a life, several owners, perhaps? Probably cannibalized in an earlier life and put back together with bits and pieces. I always enjoy these threads since the combined knowledge of C&V members is amazing.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:17 PM   #14
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Seems like a troll type thread IMHO. Why not cut it in half with a rusty hack saw to make it as light as a modern bike while your at it?
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Old 06-02-08, 05:24 PM   #15
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It is certainly a strange mix. The braze on centerpulls and the geometry say touring bike, but the Simplex rear derailleur is for a close ratio cogset...pivot center between the jockey wheels.
You forget that centerpulls, from what I've seen of French bikes, seem to be considered race-worthy components. Keep in mind that while it is touring geometry, it also is sans eyelets. That said, I'm not surprised at the close-ratio drivetrain, which would fall into the general idea of racing machine.

A poseur racing machine, if nothing else.

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Old 06-02-08, 05:52 PM   #16
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You forget that centerpulls, from what I've seen of French bikes, seem to be considered race-worthy components. Keep in mind that while it is touring geometry, it also is sans eyelets. That said, I'm not surprised at the close-ratio drivetrain, which would fall into the general idea of racing machine.

A poseur racing machine, if nothing else.

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True...centerpulls are considered raceworthy, but the touring tie in is the fact they are brazed on. You would want the braze on for more stopping power due to more weight. Good call on the eyelets.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:56 PM   #17
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It's even got a Campy headset, and possibly DT shifters as well. Those look like late 80's Shimano 105 SLR brake levers. It's a very cool frame - I would recommend you leave this frame alone and look for another. What size is it? 700c or 27" wheels? oh, and pics of the tubing decals would be nice....
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Old 06-02-08, 06:14 PM   #18
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True...centerpulls are considered raceworthy, but the touring tie in is the fact they are brazed on. You would want the braze on for more stopping power due to more weight. Good call on the eyelets.
Perhaps the brazed-on mounts were specifically to combat flexibility of the center-mount variants?

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Old 06-02-08, 06:21 PM   #19
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Perhaps the brazed-on mounts were specifically to combat flexibility of the center-mount variants?

-Kurt
Correct...leading to less flex and more stopping power. Actually of use to a racer or a tourer.
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Old 06-02-08, 06:28 PM   #20
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Correct...leading to less flex and more stopping power. Actually of use to a racer or a tourer.
Bingo - and also note the fact that the rear brake bridge and the chainstay bridge are not drilled to accommodate fenders. This is a racing machine with typically funky French geometry experiments.

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Old 06-02-08, 06:33 PM   #21
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Old 06-02-08, 06:44 PM   #22
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What are you intending to do with it, now that you have stripped the paint?

-Kurt

P.S.: Would be nice if you'd say a few words to accompany your photographs. I feel as if I'm talking to a wall otherwise.
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Old 06-02-08, 06:48 PM   #23
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You can add Prugnat lugs to the mix of what is identifiable.

-Kurt
They look like Bocama lugs to me. They're identical to the lugs on my PA10 that clearly marked BCM, and unlike the lugs that you identified as Prugnat in another thead. How am I supposed to learn this stuff if you're going to post incorrect information?
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Old 06-02-08, 06:48 PM   #24
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Its hard to tell from the photo provided. Do you have any detail pictures of the rear dropouts, BB and seat tube/seat stay area? Might help narrow down the list of possiblities a bit. Oh, and I would check the BB threading before you cut anything off (personally, I'd leave everything on anyways). Those gold brakes make me think Mafac, which makes me think French, which makes me think French Threaded. And French threaded isn't going to make a fixed conversion very easy.
I think the little sticker on the brake SAYS Mafac.

A frame of this vintage with those braze-ons is an odd bird - I'd preserve it. Use it as a fixie and restore the paint, but leave all the little features. When you want to sell it, it'll be worth more, at least to someone like me, who likes odd old frames and doesn't ride fixed or single!
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Old 06-02-08, 06:51 PM   #25
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I forgot to get a shot of the fork drop outs, but they are also campy. If you look down the fork tube there is an odd spiral like that of a gun barrel I have never seen anything like it in my life. The cranks are Sugino, the bars and stem are both cinelli, campy head set, mafac brakes, and simplex derailer all make the bike pretty unique. If any of you have any guesses on what this bike may be please let me know.
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