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  1. #1
    GO BIG RED norwood's Avatar
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    Ross Professional road bike

    I picked up this Ross Professional "Super Gran Tour" road bike today at a thrift store. Just curious about it is all. What year etc. I realize it's a low-end "gas-pipe" bike. Probably not worth much. This isn't about the money part of it. It's a lugged steel frame, 22" (56cm). Sticker says "Tempered 1020 Steel, Allentown, PA." Almost no braze-ons. It has a nice early Shimano 600 drivetrain and brakes. 27" Araya alloy rims. SR bars and stem. Not lightweight, but not overly heavy either. Pumped up the flat tires and rode around, everything seems straight and fine, just needs TLC (new cables, tires, and a complete teardown and lube) . I'll probably just clean it up and putter around with it. Maybe fenders.
    Just curious to see if anyone had idea on vintage and such.
    Thanks
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    Well, you've really got my interest, as I was debating whether I had time tomorrow to make a side trip across town and grab the two Ross Prof Gran Tour bikes that were offered to me last weekend! Yours looks to be in great condition, whereas 'my' two will hopefully make one useable platform given that they were stored outside over this past winter.

    My guess is right around 1980, although I haven't seen a lot of hard fact info around to accurately date them. Look on the next page or two for a thread concerning the History of Ross Bikes, or click on this link. It is up to something like 14 pages, and there are links to two catalogs - the older being 1982, and by then the graphics had changed.

    Anybody know the history of Ross bikes?

    http://f1.grp.yahoofs.com/v1/oOHKSah...s%20pg%208.jpg

    My assessment is a great set of components on a mediocre frame. Probably weighs in a bit heavier than my Fuji S12s of the same timeframe. Give what it looks like in the photos, if you paid less than $100 for it, you will have made out very well. The components are well worth that.
    Last edited by Fibber; 03-25-09 at 09:11 PM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ollo_ollo's Avatar
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    I found one NOS in the box for under $100 some years ago, used the components on a restored Raleigh Super Course, gave away the pedals & eventually sold the frame/fork to someone who made it into a single speed. Mine was supposed to be 1980-81 & it had Shimano 600 high flange hubs, yours looks to be a bit newer or the low flange wheelset is a replacement. Don
    visit my homebuilding blog: www.monoplanar.blogspot.com

  4. #4
    GO BIG RED norwood's Avatar
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    One curious bit is the word "Super" in the top tube Super Gran Tour decal. I haven't noticed that on any other Ross that I've researched. I wasn't sure what, if anything, that meant. Fully realizing of course, that "super" is probably one of the most overused marketing terms.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    Ah, that's what the extra word is. I enlarged the full bike image trying to see what that said. Per the '82 catalog, there was a 'super' GT, but that edition had a triple chainring for 15 speeds. Yours is either 10 or 12 (trying to see if there are 5 or 6 cogs in the rear).

    The 'super' also used a butted lightweight steel alloy frame, so I suspect that in this case 'super' is basically wishfull thinking?

  6. #6
    As found... devinfan's Avatar
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    Nice find. If I were you, I'd ride that bike around to all the spring garage sales until I found a nice frame, and then switch over all that shimano 600 stuff, it would look beautiful if you took some simichrome or silvo to it!

  7. #7
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    Well, inspired by your bike, I went back to look at the twin ugly sisters that I saw briefly on Saturday. They somehow looked worst to me today, but for $5 for the pair, I'm sure that I'll end up with something useful out of the deal. Oddly enough, I did note that most of the drivetrain was Shimano on Saturday, but it wasn't 600 series, but Tourney! I didn't think Shimano used that name until into the 90's, but both bikes had it. One has steel wheels, the other alloy, and both use the thin, long reflector like yours, not the square stubby one shown in the '82 catalog. Not really sure what to think of them.

    So like I said, I paid for them, but didn't take them home yet. Why?, well we ended up playing 'lets make a deal', and I came away with 4 bikes for $30. The ones that came home today were the '89 Trek 1000 (very nice but needs a rear rim), and a '70's Schwinn (model unknown as of this moment due to peeling decals).

  8. #8
    GO BIG RED norwood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fibber View Post
    Well, inspired by your bike, I went back to look at the twin ugly sisters that I saw briefly on Saturday. They somehow looked worst to me today, but for $5 for the pair, I'm sure that I'll end up with something useful out of the deal. Oddly enough, I did note that most of the drivetrain was Shimano on Saturday, but it wasn't 600 series, but Tourney! I didn't think Shimano used that name until into the 90's, but both bikes had it. One has steel wheels, the other alloy, and both use the thin, long reflector like yours, not the square stubby one shown in the '82 catalog. Not really sure what to think of them.

    So like I said, I paid for them, but didn't take them home yet. Why?, well we ended up playing 'lets make a deal', and I came away with 4 bikes for $30. The ones that came home today were the '89 Trek 1000 (very nice but needs a rear rim), and a '70's Schwinn (model unknown as of this moment due to peeling decals).
    Sounds like you made a good score.
    FWIW my "new" Ross has 5 cogs in back. I'm begining to realize just how nice those Shimano 600arabesque components are.
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  9. #9
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    There is one like that in a local LBS, hi-ten frame with Shimano 600. That is one strange combo, I actually thought that it was upgraded by the old owner. I like it though, that was one of the prettiest shimano groups IMO. I wonder why Ross put those components on that frame?

    Anyway, nice bike!
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    I made a tough decision today after studying the two bikes I dragged home the other day. Parts.... that's it - parts for other project. The paint is so bad, that rust is breaking out everywhere. Rubbing compound isn't going to bring either of them back. Using these frames requires a repaint, and a hi-ten frame is just too low end to be worth that much trouble. For $5 I get a box full of parts, and the frame was just a carrier to get the stuff home.

    Anybody in the area want two Ross Professional frames?

  11. #11
    OCD Moderator cb400bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by norwood View Post
    Fully realizing of course, that "super" is probably one of the most overused marketing terms.
    So is "New and Improved".

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