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Old 08-07-10, 10:54 PM   #1
Veloria
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Tell Me About My Vintage Trek? Out of My Depth Here!



This beautiful Trek circa early 1980s unexpectedly fell into my lap last week (!). The previous owner describes the frame as custom built. It has no model number and a potpourri of components, mostly high end. The frame is Reynolds 531. The paint colour is an unusual shade of dark slate blue - somewhere between navy blue and gray. The brake levers, handlebar tape, pedals, bell, saddlebag and bottlecage are my additions; all else has been left as it was.



I do not know much at all about vintage Trek bicycles. Should I be looking for a model number, or were the frames indeed handmade one-offs during this period? And just how nice is this bike?



The lugs are pretty simple. Seatstay caps and fork crown are engraved "Trek". Dropouts are Suntour. What do you all think?
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Old 08-07-10, 11:06 PM   #2
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This might help:
http://www.vintage-trek.com/
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Old 08-07-10, 11:13 PM   #3
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Umm right!

(that website... OMG... what have I gotten myself into!)
I mean, thanks!
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Old 08-08-10, 12:38 AM   #4
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You'll know just as soon as you look up the serial number, but I'd start looking at 1981/82 models. The 1983 paint scheme changed to include the seattube panel color on the headtube as well, and in 1984 they made everything ugly. The paint/decal scheme in 1980 was also significantly different than yours but since the 1981 catalog doesn't show pictures or list colors you're on your own. Offhand, I'd guess 1981/1981.5 model 610 frame, which could have been built up with two different levels of average Japanese parts or with Shimano 600EX (arabesque, model 6200).

I have a thing for old Treks . I've had seven so far and I just rebuilt a 1980 414.
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Old 08-08-10, 06:27 AM   #5
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Seriously nice bike. Vintage Trek steel = Especially Reynolds 531. Hope you're going to keep that beauty.
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Old 08-08-10, 07:19 AM   #6
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That bike is beautiful. The color is amazing and your additions are perfect.

I know nothing about it thought.
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Old 08-08-10, 08:07 AM   #7
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I would also say 80'-81. The Tektro brakes look out of place though.
Maybe some better pics of the components? If it has any of the original components you can get the date code off the part. But the serial will tell you when it was made.
I don't think its any type of custom frame though. Just an off the shelf offering.
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Old 08-08-10, 08:48 AM   #8
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Looks like a Trek 720. Touring geometery, same as the 520 except 531 instead of Japanese tubing.
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Old 08-08-10, 09:00 AM   #9
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Looks like a Trek 720. Touring geometery, same as the 520 except 531 instead of Japanese tubing.
520's also had Reynolds tubing until 89'.
But this bike is not a 720.........
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Old 08-08-10, 09:14 AM   #10
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+1 Not a 720, not a 620 either. Too many components have been changed to make any quick IDs. Just look up the serial number at the vintage Trek site.

Early 520s were Reynolds 501.

1982 613??

Last edited by wrk101; 08-08-10 at 09:19 AM.
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Old 08-08-10, 09:17 AM   #11
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Reynolds decal indicates frame tubes only as 531, so could be 6xx series bike (like mine!)....Veloria, in case you didn't see it the serial number is located on the bottom bracket probably under a plastic cable guide. You can move the guide without dismantling things to get the number, and as you have discovered the vintage trek site will tell you lots.

Please post more pictures!

Mark
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Old 08-08-10, 09:20 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ricohman View Post
520's also had Reynolds tubing until 89'.
But this bike is not a 720.........
What was the lowest cost 531 frame Trek made in 1981-2? That's what this is, I thought they called it a 720 back then.
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Old 08-08-10, 09:23 AM   #13
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Quote:
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What was the lowest cost 531 frame Trek made in 1981-2? That's what this is, I thought they called it a 720 back then.
600 series.


Check the minimum insert line on that stem, I think you have it way too high.
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Old 08-08-10, 09:30 AM   #14
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It's a 613. This model was made either in '82 or '83 (catalog will confirm) but that is certainly a Trek 613. A friend of mine has one, very nice ride.
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Old 08-08-10, 09:44 AM   #15
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Has to be a 600 series being 531 with Suntour drops. The 500's were Reynolds 501. If it was a 700 series or better the head tube is usually the same color as the seat tube decal.
I think the frame is a standard model just built up with different parts at some point. Long wheel base points it to a touring model like a 82-83 620. Does it have a Mallard Helocomatic rear hub? Thats what came on 83 touring bikes.

Many models shared the same frames and different components. Missing the original bits you will not be 100% sure even by the SN. I had a 83 520 that was original parts with triples and and all the parts that would be on a 520 but the Trek site listed its SN as a 500. It is very possible that since the difference is all in the components that Trek was low on frames stamped as a 520 and built a frame with a 500 SN as a 520 to fill orders.

What ever it is nothing wrong with the parts it has on it and steel treks ride wonderful. Ride the hell out of it!
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Old 08-08-10, 10:25 AM   #16
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Thanks once again. I found the serial number.
According to it, this bicycle is a Trek 610 circa 1982.

I do not think any of the components are original (a mechanic built up the frame for his girlfriend), so they are unlikely to be indicative. Rear hub is Campagnolo and the wheels are handbuilt Rigida. Crankset and derailleurs are Suntour Sprint. I will take some better pictures when I have a chance.

The level of the stem insertion is fine; it places the handlebars slightly below the saddle, thought he angle of the pictures makes it look otherwise.

Last edited by Veloria; 08-08-10 at 10:28 AM.
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Old 08-08-10, 10:33 AM   #17
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vintage-trek.com has a serial number list that makes it easy to tell the model if I remember correctly. Your bike looks really nice!
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Old 08-08-10, 10:57 AM   #18
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Thanks once again. I found the serial number.
According to it, this bicycle is a Trek 610 circa 1982.
That's odd. I'd pretty much ruled out 1982 in my previous post because the main colors offered for the 610 frame were pewter, gunmetal, and red. I didn't think any of those would show up particularly blue, but I suppose it depends on Trek's interpretation and/or whether the guy who mixed the paint was listening to "Mr. Blue" at the time.
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Old 08-08-10, 11:12 AM   #19
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That's odd. I'd pretty much ruled out 1982 in my previous post because the main colors offered for the 610 frame were pewter, gunmetal, and red. I didn't think any of those would show up particularly blue, but I suppose it depends on Trek's interpretation and/or whether the guy who mixed the paint was listening to "Mr. Blue" at the time.
Looking through the catalogues, I think the colour of mine is "gunmetal with pewter panels".

So, was only the frame Reynolds 531 on this model then, or fork as well?
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Old 08-08-10, 11:18 AM   #20
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Works for me - I've seen some blue guns, I suppose . Yep, I started looking at the 610 because your frame sticker indicates that only part of the frame is 531 and because there aren't any tubing stickers on the fork blades. According to the catalog the 3 main tubes are 531 and the forks and stays are Ishawata manganese-moly. I'm a big fan of Ishawata tubing as well and I don't think it's anything to be disappointed about. A very nice find in what appears to be very nice condition .
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Old 08-08-10, 01:46 PM   #21
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This is an early 80s, 600-series frame. These frames were indeed hand brazed at that time, but not one-offs. The geometry was fixed according to the model designation. The 600 series was intended for "sport-touring."

The forks and rear stays/dropout assemblies were fabricated in Japan and shipped to Wisconsin to be joined to frames, painted, and assembled for sale.

700 series and 900 series frames were entirely built in Wisconsin.
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Old 08-08-10, 03:35 PM   #22
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That's a pretty bicycle.
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Old 08-09-10, 09:42 PM   #23
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Ah, now I see what you mean by "Vintage Trek"! Very nice condition, too. Enjoy!

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Old 08-10-10, 06:27 AM   #24
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I sold Treks in the early 80's and never knew that parts of the frame were made in Japan, then sent to Wisconsin. This is a beautiful bike, anyhoo. Worst thing about the early Treks was assembling them, which was easily a 3 hour plus job. Frame and fork sent in 1 box, wheels and all loose parts sent in another. Custom assembly for each bike. Quite a far cry from today's bikes (I just bought a 2010 Trek 1.1). Handlebar, stem, STI levers, all cables, and tape-all pre-assembled right out of the box.
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