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Old 01-25-12, 12:34 PM   #1
bikemanbob
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Kuwahara Count: Much Nicer Than Expected!

I bought this bike yesterday, and I have to say that I'm impressed with it. I especially like the spoke holder on the chain stay. Also, I like the cranks and the chain rings. As it is, there isn't much information on Bike Forums on this bike. I presenting it for future reference.

I included an "After Picture" in this post. More "after pictures" can be seen in Post #29.


After Picture:



Before Pictures:









Last edited by bikemanbob; 01-30-12 at 09:57 AM.
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Old 01-25-12, 12:41 PM   #2
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Looks to be in very nice shape. That spoke holder is an elegant approach to protecting the stays from chain slap.
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Old 01-25-12, 12:47 PM   #3
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The serial should have a format where the first two numbers denote the year and should be located on the seat tube above the non drive crank arm... guess is that it is early to mid eighties by the parts which are all very nice.

It is a great looking bike and if it is anything like any other Kuwahara from this era, you have found yourself a rather excellent and well made machine.
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Old 01-25-12, 12:59 PM   #4
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Nice looking bike. That would make for an excellent foul weather rider.
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Old 01-25-12, 01:11 PM   #5
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Sweet bike! Looks like a sport touring model with the dual front eyelets and the awesome spoke holder.
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Old 01-25-12, 01:40 PM   #6
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Looks great and a bit older (nicer?) than my Kuwahara Tourer

(old crappy pic)

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Old 01-25-12, 01:42 PM   #7
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Nice looking bike. That would make for an excellent foul weather rider.
It won't explode in the sun either.
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Old 01-25-12, 02:35 PM   #8
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It is a great looking bike and if it is anything like any other Kuwahara from this era, you have found yourself a rather excellent and well made machine.
Thank you. The bike is slightly too small, but I'm going to try to make it work. When the opportunity to buy presented itself, I didn't expect much. However, after having time to examine the bike, it is very nice!
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Old 01-25-12, 02:57 PM   #9
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Very nice!
What size wheels is it sporting?

Cheers,
Chris
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Old 01-25-12, 03:03 PM   #10
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Very nice!
What size wheels is it sporting?

Cheers,
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Thanks. The wheels are 27".
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Old 01-25-12, 03:43 PM   #11
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IMHO Kuwahara was one of the best builders in Japan during the 1980's. It is a shame than so few of their bikes sold over here under their own name (they did make bikes from time to time for Centurion and others).
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Old 01-25-12, 04:13 PM   #12
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IMHO Kuwahara was one of the best builders in Japan during the 1980's. It is a shame than so few of their bikes sold over here under their own name (they did make bikes from time to time for Centurion and others).
Interesting information! Good to know. From what I can see, it looks constructed very well.
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Old 01-25-12, 05:29 PM   #13
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IMHO Kuwahara was one of the best builders in Japan during the 1980's. It is a shame than so few of their bikes sold over here under their own name (they did make bikes from time to time for Centurion and others).
They sold a lot of bike in Canada and even provided bicycles for the national racing team here and wonder if their production agreements with Schwinn included some non competition clauses.

You can't swing a cat here without hitting a Kuwahara... literally.

I have have an '87 Cascade and '88 Shasta which were sold as all mountain bikes but are really touring bikes fitted for 26 inch wheels.
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Old 01-25-12, 05:50 PM   #14
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That is nice! Even the rear reflector mount is nicely designed. Judging by the hoods/tape, the bike has seen some use, but you'd never know it by looking at the paint. I can't see the front end of the spoke holder. Are the spokes fastened to the frame with nipples? And is that factory drillium on the chainrings?
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Old 01-25-12, 05:56 PM   #15
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The drillium is factory work... was quite prevalent in the early to mid eighties.
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Old 01-25-12, 08:40 PM   #16
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That is nice! Even the rear reflector mount is nicely designed. Judging by the hoods/tape, the bike has seen some use, but you'd never know it by looking at the paint. I can't see the front end of the spoke holder. Are the spokes fastened to the frame with nipples? And is that factory drillium on the chainrings?
The bike has seen minimal use. The tires are original and show little wear. As to the spokes, I believe the nipples are used to fasten the spokes to the frame (I don't have it near me at the moment).
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Old 01-26-12, 07:38 AM   #17
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Looks to be in very nice shape. That spoke holder is an elegant approach to protecting the stays from chain slap.
I haven't looked too closely, but I haven't found a flaw in the paint. The spoke holders would work well in protecting the chain stay.
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Old 01-27-12, 10:49 AM   #18
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Very nice bike.

The Kuwahara built Nishiki's I have had very a nice build quality.
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Old 01-27-12, 12:43 PM   #19
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Kuwahara's paint work was always top notch and really stands up well over time... have seen well used 25 year old Kuwaharas and Apollos that show very little degradation to their finishes.
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Old 01-27-12, 01:02 PM   #20
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Kuwahara's paint work was always top notch and really stands up well over time... have seen well used 25 year old Kuwaharas and Apollos that show very little degradation to their finishes.
I just lubed the hubs, bottom bracket, and headset. Also, I put a coat of wax on the bike. The paint is spectacular! The earliest the bike will be done is later today. When I finish it, I will post pictures.
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Old 01-27-12, 01:03 PM   #21
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Nice! I don't recall ever having seen any Kuwahara branded bike in Europe, but I can see from your pictures how this would have been a pleasant surprise. Looks well built and hardly ridden. The spoke holder is really cool.
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Old 01-27-12, 01:32 PM   #22
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I just lubed the hubs, bottom bracket, and headset. Also, I put a coat of wax on the bike. The paint is spectacular! The earliest the bike will be done is later today. When I finish it, I will post pictures.
In looking at what must be thousands upon thousands of older bicycles from a huge number of manufacturers and builders would say that the finish on Kuwahara and Apollo bicycles is really second to none.

This is a Kuwahara / Apollo Siera Grande that I picked up a few years ago and you can see by the before that it was not a garage queen and had been ridden and used a good amount...



But after a basic wash and wax it still looked like new underneath the grime and had no blemishes...

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Old 01-27-12, 03:05 PM   #23
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I'm not sure about the rear brake, but looking at the front brake, it looks like there's enough reach left in the brake to switch to 700c wheels, if you ever want to.

That's a very nice bike. It's a mid-level model, which is one of my favorite types. You get maximum value along with excellent ride and reliability.
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Old 01-27-12, 04:09 PM   #24
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I'm not sure about the rear brake, but looking at the front brake, it looks like there's enough reach left in the brake to switch to 700c wheels, if you ever want to.

That's a very nice bike. It's a mid-level model, which is one of my favorite types. You get maximum value along with excellent ride and reliability.
Thanks Tom! I've only taken it for a short ride to see if I could make the frame work. The frame is 21". I prefer 22"/23" frames; but with a longer stem and seat post, I'll make it work.

I don't mind 27" wheels; and for the most part, I can't tell the difference.
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Old 01-27-12, 04:54 PM   #25
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Quick Preview!

I haven't got this excited since the last bike I overhauled!

Except for a small paint chip on the stay from a kickstand , the paint is great!


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