DRF aka Thrifty Bill
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: The NC Mountains
Bikes: 86 Katakura Silk, 87 Prologue, 87 Cimarron, 14 frame school custom, 73 Paramount
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Originally Posted by 3speed
Thanks. I'll keep doing some research, and that gives me some direction. Would you have any particular bike names I could search for?
Don't focus on a couple of models or a couple of brands. There are about a dozen different Japanese brands from the 1980s that made nice bikes. Instead, as mentioned earlier, look for good frame tubing, good components, and good paint/frame condition. The good bikes should be light in weight. If you want indexed shifting, then you need to look at the late 1980s. Everything before that was friction. The Schwinn Tenax bikes are pretty nice, as are the US built Trek bikes.
A lot of the nice Japanese bikes had Suntour components. Its common to see Suntour Cyclone derailleurs on good bikes. In the $250 market value +/-, you should be able to find a nice bike.
In any transaction, the person that knows the most, gets the best of the deal. So spend some time up front studying and then you will be ready to pounce. I have been recommending the Frank Berto Book, Upgrading Your Bicycle. It was written in 1988 and goes through many of the details of the better bikes. You can usually find it used on Amazon cheap (my last copy cost me 21 cents plus shipping). But I recommended it on the list a couple of weeks ago, and that wiped out the cheap copies. So I would check your local library.
Last edited by wrk101; 08-07-10 at 05:14 AM.