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  1. #1
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    1976 Gitane Tour de France

    I had posted a few pics right after getting this bike and I've only given it a light cleaning but I thought I'd share.

    This was recently purchased from the original owner through a friend.

    I can't wait to get it out tomorrow for my first real ride on it.


















  2. #2
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Oh! that is so good looking ! ! ! Looks minty fresh too !
    - Auchen

  3. #3
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    Very sweet! There are several very special touches to that frame. Most particularly the dropouts!

    That nice cable guide is pretty cool, too.

    Make sure the brake pads aren't too hard, and that the various bearings aren't too dried out.

    Otherwise, I am certain you will just love the ride!

    Thanks for the photos.
    1959 Hilton Wrigley Connoisseur (still my favorite!)
    1963 Hetchins Mountain King (the gravel grinder)
    1971 Gitane Tour de France (The War Horse)
    1971 Gitane Super Corsa (The Garage Queen)
    1980 Ritchey Touring (The Grail Bike)
    1984 Tom Ritchey Team Competition (NOS show bike)
    (replacing the stolen 1981 Tom Ritchey Everest custom)

  4. #4
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    Didn't this exact bike pass through here a week or two ago?

  5. #5
    Senior Member sykerocker's Avatar
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    Absolutely beautiful. Just get a set of re-pop Reynolds 531 decals, and it'll look just shy of perfect. I have a feeling that the bicycle license (I assume that's what the big sticker at the top of the seat tube is) sticker covered the original frame decal.
    Syke

    "No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by DRietz View Post
    Didn't this exact bike pass through here a week or two ago?
    Yeah, I mentioned that in my OP. I didn't have any decent pics though and it still had years of storage dust and crust on it.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by sykerocker View Post
    Absolutely beautiful. Just get a set of re-pop Reynolds 531 decals, and it'll look just shy of perfect. I have a feeling that the bicycle license (I assume that's what the big sticker at the top of the seat tube is) sticker covered the original frame decal.
    I'll be looking for good 531 decals shortly, from what I understand the 531 frame decal should have actually been just above the shift levers although there's no sign of one ever having been there.

    I also have to track down a set of comfortable pedals, it should have Lyotard 460d's on it and the ones it has now don't fit my giant feet very well.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by FORDSVTPARTS View Post
    Yeah, I mentioned that in my OP. I didn't have any decent pics though and it still had years of storage dust and crust on it.
    Oops! Sorry, I missed that! I was too busy drooling at those dropouts...

  9. #9
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    Wow, you are on a major role.

    You are doing a very nice job with the clean up.

    Keep up the good work.

  10. #10
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sykerocker View Post
    ... Just get a set of re-pop Reynolds 531 decals, and it'll look just shy of perfect. I have a feeling that the bicycle license sticker covered the original frame decal.
    Yup -- why does this happen so frequently? I have the same problem w/ Capo #2. I suspect that the bike licenses had to go in a specific position or that they were used to cover 531 decals damaged by careless bike mechanics.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
    Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
    Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
    Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
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  11. #11
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FORDSVTPARTS View Post
    I'll be looking for good 531 decals shortly, from what I understand the 531 frame decal should have actually been just above the shift levers although there's no sign of one ever having been there.
    Peugeot switched from top of seat tube to front of downtube some time in the 1970s; I don't know about Gitane.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
    Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
    Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
    Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
    Schwinn: 1988 Project KOM-10, S/N F804069

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    Yup -- why does this happen so frequently? I have the same problem w/ Capo #2. I suspect that the bike licenses had to go in a specific position or that they were used to cover 531 decals damaged by careless bike mechanics.
    I'll be hitting this guy up soon http://cgi.ebay.com/Reynolds-531-Fre...item45ee4b5988

    Here's a shot someone sent me on the Gitane forums of where it should go.



    I'll probably break out the hair dryer and see about removing the license sticker though just to see if it's there though as Gitane seemed to be a bit sporadic as far as decal placement went.
    Last edited by SteveSGP; 11-08-10 at 01:08 PM.

  13. #13
    no one cares -holiday76's Avatar
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    love this bike! Love the colors and love that it's from the year I was born. Can I have it?
    Mmmm, bicycles.

    I prefer emails to private messages - holiday76@gmail.com

  14. #14
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    Peugeot switched from top of seat tube to front of downtube some time in the 1970s; I don't know about Gitane.
    It was 1974, not that the information is the least bit helpful to FORDSVTPARTS.

  15. #15
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    By looking at other TdFs it seems that Gitane varied some of the decal placement randomly of course I could be completely wrong in that as well but I know I've found some with the Gitane decal on the seat tube and some with it on the downtube and some that have both.

    I've also been told that remains of the 531 decals on the bike appear to be pre-1974 style but other clues point to a newer bike.

    As for dating the bike itself here's the first response I got from the Gitane guys,

    "Your bike is probably a late 1975 or early 1976 Gitane Tour de France. It has a full Reynolds 531 frame with chrome plated "socks" on the forks and rear triangle. The 1974 and many 1975 TdFs only had the 3 main tubes made of Reynolds 531 and the rear triangles were painted, not chromed.

    Thinking back, we got in at least one TdF with Huret Jubilee derailleurs.

    Many of the earlier 1974-75 TdFs had Simplex Criterium derailleurs but a few came with Huret Challenger derailleurs (so did a few Interclubs).

    Most of the 1976 model TdFs came with Huret Success derailleurs. They had titanium/aluminum alloy bodies on the rear derailleurs. I've seen a few 1976 TdFs that still used Simplex Criterium derailleurs.

    Most of the components look original except for the seatpost, Brooks Pro saddle and 1st generation Weinmann Carrera side pull brakes.

    These bikes had MAFAC center pull brakes, either the 2000 or Competition models. The pedals may be replacements too as some of these TdFs came with Lyotard 460D pedals.

    TdFs came with chrome plated steel seatposts and cheap plastic saddles on the early versions. In 1976 they appeared with Ideale 2000 padded leather covered plastic saddles.

    The Campagnolo high flange Nuovo Tipo hubs were standard along with 27" Mavic Module-E rims and Michelin Elan tires.

    The Belleri stem and Guid bars along with the Stronglight P3 headsets are all original too.

    Nice find! "
    Last edited by SteveSGP; 11-09-10 at 05:32 AM.

  16. #16
    As found... devinfan's Avatar
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    Beautiful!! I love the huret jubilee with this bike. I hope you're keeping the Benotto tape, I think it looks great on this frame.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    Why did you quote me? I was responding to John's statement about Peugeot moving their 531 decal from the seat tube to the down tube.

  18. #18
    Senior Member shrinkboy's Avatar
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    wow, that's nice...a total classic. its my size, the fork isn't bent, so send it to me when you're done with it...

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by devinfan View Post
    Beautiful!! I love the huret jubilee with this bike. I hope you're keeping the Benotto tape, I think it looks great on this frame.
    I'm planning on leaving it as is or very close to it, The tape is in relatively good shape so there's no reason to change it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grand Bois View Post
    Why did you quote me? I was responding to John's statement about Peugeot moving their 531 decal from the seat tube to the down tube.
    Sorry about that then, perhaps if you had quoted him I wouldn't have thought it was directed towards me.

    Simple misunderstanding.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FORDSVTPARTS View Post
    Sorry about that then, perhaps if you had quoted him I wouldn't have thought it was directed towards me.

    Simple misunderstanding.
    I did quote him. #14

  22. #22
    Senior Member bibliobob's Avatar
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    Beauty! l just picked up a '72 through a trade with one of our fellow forum members and, after a few rides, I can safely say that I'm thrilled with her. Nice ride, nice relaxed geometry, nice components. It may be pushing my Raleigh Super Course out of its role as primary commuter (mine's pretty cosmetically challenged).

    Enjoy!
    I grow old, I grow old. I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.

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