There have been a lot of Motobecanes showing up here lately, and for some reason fate (and CL) have brought three of them into our family fleet of bikes. The one I'm most excited about is, naturally, the one that's for me, a mid 70s Grand Record. And as it seems to be a particularly well liked model and there are only sporadic mentions of it in the archives, I thought I'd put up a thread that could be a general resource for folks who might look for information in the future. The immediate conversations we have in these threads are actually only the smaller part of their lives, people will be finding them for years to come. (So hello, future thread-finders!)
I picked up this GR last weekend. It is filthy and has some scratches and a bit of spot rust, but I think it'll clean up well. The seatpost and stem came loose easily. The stem and bars were changed out by some previous owner, presumably the one who fitted the Suntour barcons. Other than that the bike appears to be stock. It seems close to the 1974 AND 1975 catalog specs, so could be either. It has a pat 74 Campy RD, so is definitely no earlier, and the seatpost's Reynolds decal is the French version of '3 main tubes,' while the 1976 catalog specifies that the GR is 531 'throughout' (like the Le Champion and Team Champion), so this is probably not that late.
Wheelset is the correct Normandy Luxe Competition hubs but with Weinmann 700c rims, dimpled alloy (I guess at this point they still felt the dimples helped braking). These seem so close to the catalog spec that I wonder if they were a factory option. Brakes are Weinmann 999. In 1974 the catalog says they could be that, or Universals. Actually the 1974 catalog states that the lugs could be either Nervex or Prugnat! These are the classic ornate Nervex. Crankset is 3-arm TA, another detail that changed frequently; hopefully the chainrings are still usable. Pedals are the original Atom 700.
I expect to put Campy shifters on, and will probably find appropriate bars and stem, though those seem to have changed every year for this model, including Nittos in 1974, so I'm not going to be compulsive about it. Actually I'm going to ride it with the 'dirtdrop' style that are on it now, just to see how it feels.
The seatpost is unmarked as far as I can see, and is likely the original, which is just named as 'alloy.' (Probably SR.) I have an older Brooks Pro or Ideale 90 that would be a good fit for the bike.
The only real change from original I expect to make is a pair of fat-handed Tektro aero brake levers, a major requirement for comfort. These ones have 'gum' hoods so hopefully won't look too out of place.
This is a bike that I've admired the looks of, and I know many here love them, so I am hoping it'll be a long term keeper.
Now...how about yours! (ps I have no idea why the pics resize themselves this way.)