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  1. #1
    working on progress treebound's Avatar
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    Univega "Custom" stem and "Symetric" shifters

    I know someone with a 1984 Univega Sportour and I noticed it had the word "custom" stamped into the stem. Is this really a custom stem, or just something that the Univega people spec'd out at the time?

    It was dark out so these are just a couple of pics I managed to take, I can take more later.

    I'm also curious about the shifters and where the "symmetric" fit into the heirarchy. They're friction only with no indexing clicks.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by treebound; 10-17-08 at 08:06 AM.

  2. #2
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    Custom is the model name of the stem, which was manufactured by SR (Sakae Royal).

    Symmetric was SunTour's attempt to manufacture a shifting system that automatically adjusted the trim of the front derailleur as the rear derailleur was shifted. I don't think it held any specific location in the SunTour hierachy. They do not appear to have been tied to any particular group. My impression was that they were much like a bar end or Power Shifter, a special design aimed at a niche market segment. It was left up to the bicycle manufacturer to spec them, if they thought it would appeal to their particular target audience.

    Due to the interaction of the levers, it necessitated a connecting housing and top mounting. The levers were offered in both braze-on and band mount. This would seem to indicate that they were intended for a wide price range of bicycles and also aftermarket sales.

  3. #3
    Never Nude guygadois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
    Custom is the model name of the stem, which was manufactured by SR (Sakae Royal).

    Symmetric was SunTour's attempt to manufacture a shifting system that automatically adjusted the trim of the front derailleur as the rear derailleur was shifted. I don't think it held any specific location in the SunTour hierachy. They do not appear to have been tied to any particular group. My impression was that they were much like a bar end or Power Shifter, a special design aimed at a niche market segment. It was left up to the bicycle manufacturer to spec them, if they thought it would appeal to their particular target audience.

    Due to the interaction of the levers, it necessitated a connecting housing and top mounting. The levers were offered in both braze-on and band mount. This would seem to indicate that they were intended for a wide price range of bicycles and also aftermarket sales.
    The extent of your knowledge is commendable, yet eerie.
    Bikes: Salsa Fargo Parlee Z1 Holland Pinarello Biemmezeta Della Santa

  4. #4
    CroMosexual purevl's Avatar
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    A couple of things:

    Sakae Ringyo. There are also "Custom" and "Super Custom" cranksets which seem to vary wildly, much more so than the custom stems. The symmetrics are a nifty little gadget, and while T-Mar is (as usual) 100% correct in saying that they didn't belong to any particular group, a great deal of Cyclone Mk-II bikes I've encountered were spec'ed with that shifter.
    If wanting fair bike prices makes me a leftist I don't wanna be right.

  5. #5
    working on progress treebound's Avatar
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    I'm glad I asked since I'm the one that'll be working on this thing. I'll have to be carefull if I take the shifters apart to clean and lube them.

    Thank you.

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    CroMosexual purevl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by treebound View Post
    I'm glad I asked since I'm the one that'll be working on this thing. I'll have to be carefull if I take the shifters apart to clean and lube them.

    Thank you.
    If you take them apart, I would recommend taking photos. I have several pairs that I've picked up cheaply used because they are so damned difficult to get back together correctly. In fact you might consider just letting them soak in pine-sol over night and then working some lubricant into the mechanism from the back side.
    If wanting fair bike prices makes me a leftist I don't wanna be right.

  7. #7
    Senior Member badger_biker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by treebound View Post
    I'm glad I asked since I'm the one that'll be working on this thing. I'll have to be carefull if I take the shifters apart to clean and lube them.
    I fully agree with pruvl's recommendations on photos or not taking them apart. I acquired a set on a 1984 Schwinn Le Tour I picked up last spring. I thought I was super careful in disassembling them but it took me several tries to get them back together correctly! I do like them a lot though. They really do prevent a lot of micro adjustments on the front chain rings. With a good shifting rear derailleur, they make going back to friction much more pleasant.

    BTW: where in WI are you located treebound?
    1975 Motobecane Le Champion
    1984 Bridgestone 400 -- 1985 Specialized Expedition 1986 Cannondale ST400 and Nishiki Cascade -- 1987 Trek Elance 400T and Schwinn Voyageur
    1990 Cannondale ST400 -- 1994 Univega Via Carisma

  8. #8
    working on progress treebound's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by badger_biker View Post
    BTW: where in WI are you located treebound?
    I'm about 20 miles north of downtown Milwaukee. We've talked a few times about moving to the Madison area, but finding jobs is the biggest factor in that idea.

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