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Old 08-20-09, 05:28 PM   #1
mkeller234
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My hobo Lotus is ready to roll

You may recognize this one from my recent poll, thanks to all for the opinions.

Here is the small story for this bike. I was riding downtown after work one morning and I noticed what I thought might be a Motobecane Grand Record in the trash. I tailed it over to discover two things, it was a Lotus... and the homeless owner was sleeping beside it. To scared to wake him up I left it and continued on. I burned on it for a while and checked periodically if it was still there... for 2.5 days.

I gathered up some courage and asked would he sell his bike, I heard a yes then asked how much. 10 dollars was the response.. and to be honest it really wasn't worth much more.

Well, here I am one or two months later and the Lotus has a new lease on life. Most of the parts came from a Fuji that was too small the rest from trades and the basement shelf. It's nothing fancy... but I love it.

The day I brought it home:




The new version (I see I need to adjust to seat angle a bit):








I'll type out a build list later on.
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Old 08-20-09, 05:31 PM   #2
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Looks very French for a Japanese bike.
Good job. Looks good.
-Gene-
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Old 08-20-09, 05:32 PM   #3
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Very Nice! The paint cleaned up really well.
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Old 08-20-09, 06:03 PM   #4
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Looks very French for a Japanese bike.
Good job. Looks good.
-Gene-
Almost like say.... a Motobecane grand record??
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Old 08-20-09, 07:04 PM   #5
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Almost like say.... a Motobecane grand record??
LOL, exactly.
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Old 08-20-09, 07:26 PM   #6
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Ok, here is the humble build list, the Lotus weighed in at a husky 29 pounds:

Frame: Tange 5 cro moly
RD: Shimano light action
FD: Shimano Altus
Crank: Sakae SX
Stem: SR
Brakes: Wienmann 750 looooong reach with new Shimano levers
Shifters: Suntour Bar ends
Pedals: new MKS touring
Saddle: Wrights W3N (10.50 local pu on ebay woot)
Fenders: SKS
Rack: Bontrager back rack
Rims: araya (might switch out for dark gray Wolbers)
Tires: 32mm Panaracer Pasela
and 1 campy skewer

Here is the donor of 85% of the parts, a 10 dollar Fuji Tivoli bought on the exact same day as the Lotus:
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Old 08-20-09, 07:47 PM   #7
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She's a looker. I really like your shifting solution. Nice job!
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Old 08-20-09, 07:50 PM   #8
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She's a looker. I really like your shifting solution. Nice job!
Thanks, it shifts like a champ too. The bar ends are fun to operate as a bonus.
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Old 08-20-09, 08:24 PM   #9
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Very, very nice. I almost bought that model of Lotus many years ago.

I would, however, like to see what it looks like with the handlebars flipped.
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Old 08-21-09, 10:15 AM   #10
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Yeah, I wish I would have at least thought to look at it with the bars flipped. I probably would have been them right way up anyhow for comfort. The model is an "America"
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Old 08-21-09, 02:39 PM   #11
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WOW. Both those things looks nice, it's a shame the fudgie was too small.I really do like the shifters as well.It encourages me to get my grand prix luce trailer tower finally finished(it will not look that good, it's a little/lot more of a frankenbike).-By tange 5 is that champion#5 tubing?
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Old 08-21-09, 02:58 PM   #12
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Nicely done! I recently sold off a Sekai 2000 built with tange 5 tubing and outfitted with Shimano Arabesque parts I stripped off of a trash--picked Ross. It was a solid ride w/ geometry that would work for a wide variety of combos, just like your Lotus.

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Old 08-21-09, 04:14 PM   #13
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Way cool.
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Old 08-21-09, 04:21 PM   #14
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Really nice job, Matt. I'm kind of waiting for an old Lotus frame to show up at my front door and have most of the parts I need just sitting there ready to jump. What are the bars that you could use mtb levers?
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Old 08-21-09, 05:11 PM   #15
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^The bars are just some unmarked steelies stolen from a Huffy Bay Pointe.

Neal, I was really excited to mount that light you sent me but the mount rubs the bottom cup of the headset! I'm thinking a few washers will fix that.

Quote:
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By tange 5 is that champion#5 tubing?
Yeah, thats what I meant. It's low end stuff but i'm not complaining, it rides super especially compared to the Schwinn it replaced. I just need to adjust the position of some things for comfort.
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Old 08-21-09, 05:31 PM   #16
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The cables are a bit long to my eye, but I like the bike very much.

It would be cool if you could slot the brake lever clamps so that they secure the shift cables. I may try it on one of my bikes. Think it would take about an hour with a small round file.
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Old 08-21-09, 06:29 PM   #17
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Way cool... love that setup. Funny we both placed an order with Niagara on the same night, received our orders the same day, and are both working on a commuter. Yours came out better than mine. Oh, and we both went with Pasela 32's.

Again... Very Nice

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Old 08-21-09, 07:07 PM   #18
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The cables are a bit long to my eye, but I like the bike very much.

It would be cool if you could slot the brake lever clamps so that they secure the shift cables. I may try it on one of my bikes. Think it would take about an hour with a small round file.
Yeah, that is a great idea about the sift cables. As long as the lever clamps had enough material to remove I don't see the harm. The cables are on the long side, I was playing it safe in case I went with a taller stem. One day when I am good and bored I may have a go at them.

Thanks for the compliment, bikes like your Carlton and N. Lerner's super course were a big part of the inspiration.
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Last edited by mkeller234; 08-21-09 at 07:12 PM.
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Old 08-21-09, 07:10 PM   #19
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Way cool... love that setup. Funny we both placed an order with Niagara on the same night, received our orders the same day, and are both working on a commuter. Yours came out better than mine. Oh, and we both went with Pasela 32's.

Again... Very Nice

~kn
Yeah, that is strange. I ordered from the mostly to get the brake levers, all silver for 15 bucks and that includes the lined cable housing!

This is my second bike with Paselas, I really liked the 25mm ones and the 32s are equally sweet. Did you finish your bike?
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Old 08-21-09, 07:23 PM   #20
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That's a well thought out setup, nicely put together, and quite elegant for a commuter. Well done!
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Old 08-21-09, 07:25 PM   #21
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Did you finish your bike?
Finished for now. Still needs fenders, rack, and baskets. Wanted to get it ridable first. Posted pics here.

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Old 08-22-09, 12:14 AM   #22
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I really like the handlebars. I liked both the varieties you offered up in the other thread. They remind me of the classic utility bicycles of the 1920s-30s that mixed in both bicycle and motorcycle styling.
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Old 08-22-09, 05:21 AM   #23
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Well done and beautiful bike!

When I put the barend shifters on my Schwinn tandem I was worried they might get in the way of my knees. But as it turned out, it is a perfect place for this kind of riding. Head up, enjoying the scenery, dinging the bell for fun, chatting with Mrs. PB. Life couldn't be better, until we come to a hill, that is!

I used these leather grips instead of tape. They were on closeout at Nashbar over the winter, so I don't know if they still have them.

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Old 08-22-09, 09:06 AM   #24
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I had a set of those leather grips on a mountain bike and I liked them. Unfortunately, they were glued on and I had to cut them off when I changed bars.
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Old 08-22-09, 10:28 AM   #25
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I like those grips a lot PB. When I thought about something like that but wasn't patient enough to look around. I also though about some type of black cord wrapped tight. I found the velox at a local shop. Also a whole rainbow of old tessostar tape!

I moved the bell to the handlebar and I smile like a dork every time I ring it. I might switch the wrights saddle with a brooks b15 that I have too.
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