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  1. #1051
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by realestvin7 View Post
    It's an LD stem. Only way to find one now is to have someone make one. Those who have them rarely sell them. It'll set you back $100 or more to have one made. More if you find a legit used one.
    I think these were a Steve Potts design.

    Ours usually run $90.00 if powder coated and a little more if they require chrome... being that have been in production for so long I'd say they are legit.

    Unlike the Potts design that has it's top clamp above the headset, the Arvon stem fixes from within the steerer and is invisible.

  2. #1052
    Large Member realestvin7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    I think these were a Steve Potts design.

    Ours usually run $90.00 if powder coated and a little more if they require chrome... being that have been in production for so long I'd say they are legit.

    Unlike the Potts design that has it's top clamp above the headset, the Arvon stem fixes from within the steerer and is invisible.
    I over estimated and also forgot about Steve Potts making them. So...what he said. Lol.
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  3. #1053
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by realestvin7 View Post
    I over estimated and also forgot about Steve Potts making them. So...what he said. Lol.
    This is a gorgeous Steve Potts bike... the stem design seems to be attributed to him more than anyone else although there are other examples since anyone with a torch, materials, and skills could fabricate one.



    I have a small collection of 80's stuff that was locally made... when threadless systems took over folks here started filet brazing custom stems for their builds and also built conventional stems as it was needed.

    There was a bike posted here a while ago that someone thought was a Potts but when I looked st the stem and some of the frame details knew it was an Arvon and he confirmed this.

    This is a great video on how one makes an LD stem...


  4. #1054
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Local content... dunno if I posted pics of the newly powdered Moulden here (memory ain't what it used to be) and if I did I apologize in advance.

    I love this bike.

    After powder... this shows some of the custom details better.








  5. #1055
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    So I'm still debating what bike to make into my vintage drop bar MTB. I found another frame today, its an old 92-95 Barracuda A2B in pretty nice shape. Would that make a better drop bar conversion bike compared to the mid '90s Specialized Rockhopper that I already have? The A2b is a chromoly frame and fork setup.
    "When dealing with stuff like this consider that this is a bicycle, not a spaceship." -- FBinNY

  6. #1056
    rain dog mainstreetexile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    I think these were a Steve Potts design.

    Ours usually run $90.00 if powder coated and a little more if they require chrome... being that have been in production for so long I'd say they are legit.

    Unlike the Potts design that has it's top clamp above the headset, the Arvon stem fixes from within the steerer and is invisible.
    Sixty Fiver, do you have a picture of one of these stems? By fix from within the steerer, do you mean that they tighten up like normal quill stems so they are height adjustable, or are they fixed another way?

  7. #1057
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainstreetexile View Post
    Sixty Fiver, do you have a picture of one of these stems? By fix from within the steerer, do you mean that they tighten up like normal quill stems so they are height adjustable, or are they fixed another way?
    The Arvon designed stem sets from the bottom and is a single unit as opposed to a stem and adaptor like the Potts and is height adjustable.


  8. #1058
    Senior Member neo_pop_71's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    The Arvon designed stem sets from the bottom and is a single unit as opposed to a stem and adaptor like the Potts and is height adjustable.

    That is one super tasty stem and I'm very interested in picking one up! How does it secure in the steer tube? Any height we need? Thanks! -D-
    I'd rather add more life to my years, than years to my life.

  9. #1059
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neo_pop_71 View Post
    That is one super tasty stem and I'm very interested in picking one up! How does it secure in the steer tube? Any height we need? Thanks! -D-
    They can be built in any reasonable size and almost to any spec...

    I don't have a good pic of the bottom of the stem so will have to take some... it gets set with a nut driver from the bottom of the steerer tube so tightens up in the same mechanical fashion but does it from below instead of up top.

    This is done with a nut driver or ratchet with a small extension.

    This is an Arvon Cygnet with a custom stem...


  10. #1060
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    it gets set with a nut driver from the bottom of the steerer tube so tightens up in the same mechanical fashion but does it from below instead of up top.
    1986 Diamondback Apex ~ 1988 Diamondback Ascent EX ~ 1989 Jamis Dakar ~ 1989 Specialized Stumpjumper Comp
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  11. #1061
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobotech View Post
    So I'm still debating what bike to make into my vintage drop bar MTB. I found another frame today, its an old 92-95 Barracuda A2B in pretty nice shape. Would that make a better drop bar conversion bike compared to the mid '90s Specialized Rockhopper that I already have? The A2b is a chromoly frame and fork setup.
    Not familiar with the Barracuda, but that era Rockhopper was on the basic side (quick check, the Barracuda is kind of basic too). Are they identical in size? Paint and cosmetics?

    Realize as long as you do the work yourself, all of the changes are pretty easily transferred to another bike, so you can always upgrade/change later.
    Last edited by wrk101; 02-23-13 at 07:39 AM.

  12. #1062
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrk101 View Post
    Not familiar with the Barracuda, but that era Rockhopper was on the basic side (quick check, the Barracuda is kind of basic too). Are they identical in size? Paint and cosmetics?

    Realize as long as you do the work yourself, all of the changes are pretty easily transferred to another bike, so you can always upgrade/change later.
    That is what I think too, that they are both rather normal decent basic frames. I just wondered if there was something odd about the Barracuda that would preclude it from being converted. The Rockhopper that I have is black but the paint is rather poor. The Barracuda appears to be a fair amount nicer cosmetic-wise than the Rockhopper which is why I'm considering this route instead.

    They both appear to be pretty close in size too.
    "When dealing with stuff like this consider that this is a bicycle, not a spaceship." -- FBinNY

  13. #1063
    Senior Member neo_pop_71's Avatar
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    Hey bobotech,

    I can give you any specific info you need on your Barracuda, I'm a mod over on the Barracuda website, here is a link to the model hierarchy:

    http://www.barracudabicycles.com/bikes.html

    Your A2B frame will be straight Tange MTN CrMo tubing, not double butted unfortunately, but the stock rigid 'Cuda forks are great! I can tell you this, the 'Cuda riders are a pretty tight-knit crew and (in my opinion) are some of the nicest guys I've met on any forum. The original Barracuda company went away in mid-'96 when the owners sold the company to Ross Cycles in New York. If you have an A2B with a "TREE AMIGOS" sticker on the seat tube, then you have an original Barracuda. If you have the same Barracuda logo on the head tube and seat tube, then you have a Ross Barracuda. Barracudas are unique these days and Rockhoppers aren't, I'd build the 'Cuda for that reason alone but I prefer originality over conformity.

    I recently built my 7 year old a rare 12" frame Barracuda, it'll be her first 26" wheel trail bike. I can't to start bombin' the trails behind our home on 'Cudas!

    Also, there is a Barracuda pilgrimage to Durango planned for later this year... beers, trails, and ride with some of the old factory pro riders are a few things on the agenda. Just something to keep in mind if you snag the A2B for your drop bar build.

    (I've attached a picture of the "TREE AMIGOS" sticker and a pic of my '93 A2Limited)

    TreeAmigos.jpgA2Lside.jpg
    I'd rather add more life to my years, than years to my life.

  14. #1064
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    Quote Originally Posted by neo_pop_71 View Post
    Hey bobotech,

    I can give you any specific info you need on your Barracuda, I'm a mod over on the Barracuda website, here is a link to the model hierarchy:

    http://www.barracudabicycles.com/bikes.html

    Your A2B frame will be straight Tange MTN CrMo tubing, not double butted unfortunately, but the stock rigid 'Cuda forks are great! I can tell you this, the 'Cuda riders are a pretty tight-knit crew and (in my opinion) are some of the nicest guys I've met on any forum. The original Barracuda company went away in mid-'96 when the owners sold the company to Ross Cycles in New York. If you have an A2B with a "TREE AMIGOS" sticker on the seat tube, then you have an original Barracuda. If you have the same Barracuda logo on the head tube and seat tube, then you have a Ross Barracuda. Barracudas are unique these days and Rockhoppers aren't, I'd build the 'Cuda for that reason alone but I prefer originality over conformity.

    I recently built my 7 year old a rare 12" frame Barracuda, it'll be her first 26" wheel trail bike. I can't to start bombin' the trails behind our home on 'Cudas!

    Also, there is a Barracuda pilgrimage to Durango planned for later this year... beers, trails, and ride with some of the old factory pro riders are a few things on the agenda. Just something to keep in mind if you snag the A2B for your drop bar build.

    (I've attached a picture of the "TREE AMIGOS" sticker and a pic of my '93 A2Limited)

    TreeAmigos.jpgA2Lside.jpg
    Awesome. thanks for the info. It does have the Tree Amigos sticker on the seat tube. I noticed that and thought it was something added afterwards. It also has STX derailleurs. I guess I will grab it if only for the uniqueness of it. Shame it has no wheels though but I have plenty of spare wheels.

    I will probably build it up using my 9 speed 105 brifters, Ultegra front derailleur, 48-40-28 crankset I have, and the original STX rear derailleur with wheels made up of Mavic rims and Deore hubs. Will be different thats for sure.
    "When dealing with stuff like this consider that this is a bicycle, not a spaceship." -- FBinNY

  15. #1065
    Senior Member Barchettaman's Avatar
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    That sounds like a fairly awesome build!

  16. #1066
    Large Member realestvin7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neo_pop_71 View Post
    Hey bobotech,

    I can give you any specific info you need on your Barracuda, I'm a mod over on the Barracuda website, here is a link to the model hierarchy:

    http://www.barracudabicycles.com/bikes.html

    Your A2B frame will be straight Tange MTN CrMo tubing, not double butted unfortunately, but the stock rigid 'Cuda forks are great! I can tell you this, the 'Cuda riders are a pretty tight-knit crew and (in my opinion) are some of the nicest guys I've met on any forum. The original Barracuda company went away in mid-'96 when the owners sold the company to Ross Cycles in New York. If you have an A2B with a "TREE AMIGOS" sticker on the seat tube, then you have an original Barracuda. If you have the same Barracuda logo on the head tube and seat tube, then you have a Ross Barracuda. Barracudas are unique these days and Rockhoppers aren't, I'd build the 'Cuda for that reason alone but I prefer originality over conformity.

    I recently built my 7 year old a rare 12" frame Barracuda, it'll be her first 26" wheel trail bike. I can't to start bombin' the trails behind our home on 'Cudas!

    Also, there is a Barracuda pilgrimage to Durango planned for later this year... beers, trails, and ride with some of the old factory pro riders are a few things on the agenda. Just something to keep in mind if you snag the A2B for your drop bar build.

    (I've attached a picture of the "TREE AMIGOS" sticker and a pic of my '93 A2Limited)

    TreeAmigos.jpgA2Lside.jpg
    I have a Spinner fork off of one of those Barracudas.

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  17. #1067
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    Hey, I just noticed, these barracudeas are threadless? I'm surprised considering how old they are.
    "When dealing with stuff like this consider that this is a bicycle, not a spaceship." -- FBinNY

  18. #1068
    Senior Member neo_pop_71's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobotech View Post
    Hey, I just noticed, these barracudeas are threadless? I'm surprised considering how old they are.
    You're certainly not the first person that has commented in surprise about a Barracuda given its vintage, to that I say don't be surprised at all. Here's why... Jon (Wege) and Dave (Southwell) hired Tom Teesdale (TET Cycles) to make four Barracuda prototypes, he designed everything from the geometry to the tubing choice. Next thing Jon and Dave did was to hit up John Parker at Yeti, Yeti was nearby neighbor in Durango. Yeti began manufacturing all the early Barracudas, keep in mind that Frank "The Welder" Wadelton (MTN Bike Hall of Fame) and Chris Herting (3D Racing) were the welders at Yeti and they welded up the early Barracudas. Barracudas are some of the most undervalued bikes out there today, some fetch a fair price but most are cheap... hardly anyone remembers how cool they were (still are) but I'm happy to keep picking them up!!!

    My daughter's 12" frame 'Cuda came from Eric Sakadinsky in Durango, he was one of the Barracuda/Dos Equis XX team racers from 1993 to 1995.

    The photo was taken at the 1993 Cactus Cup, you gotta dig the Barracuda/XX team bus!
    Pictured from (l) to (r) Dave Southwell (owner), Scott Daubert (mechanic), Lisa Muhich, Greg Orovitz, Tammy Jacques-Grewal, Eric Sakadinsky, and Matt Smith.
    XXbusTeam.jpg
    Last edited by neo_pop_71; 02-23-13 at 10:02 PM.
    I'd rather add more life to my years, than years to my life.

  19. #1069
    Senior Member neo_pop_71's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by realestvin7 View Post
    I have a Spinner fork off of one of those Barracudas.

    Right on!

    Hey Realestvin7, wanna sell that 'Cuda fork? I have the stock one off my A2L but no harm in having a second one at the ready!!!
    Last edited by neo_pop_71; 02-23-13 at 04:17 PM. Reason: idiotic spelling
    I'd rather add more life to my years, than years to my life.

  20. #1070
    Senior Member Chris_in_Miami's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing the 'Cuda info neo_pop_71, those bikes were largely under my radar, and I've seen a few of them on offer locally. I'll be taking a much closer look if I see another.

  21. #1071
    Senior Member neo_pop_71's Avatar
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    Good move Chris_in_Miami, smart to keep a sharp eye open for any Barracuda deals lurking about! They are out there, not long ago a 'Cuda website member (aka Cudaheads) picked up the top-of-the-line Yeti made Easton "Custom" for $80.00 in Tampa off Craigslist. That was a $3,000.00 + bike back in the early '90's!

    On a different note, I've seen your avatar and I've never bothered to ask... so, why not now... is the gent pictured in your avatar Jerzy Balowski (Alexei Sayle), the landlord from The Young Ones comedy show on the BBC back in 1982?

    Thanks!

    -D-
    I'd rather add more life to my years, than years to my life.

  22. #1072
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    I grabbed the Cuda frameset tonight. I'm not going to complain, it was free. It had the original STX derailleurs and some unknown crankset that is fairly light but isn't a Shimano or Sugino that I recognize. I took all the components off of it and have been examining it. Mine is NOT threadless. It does have a 'Cuda logo on the head tube and the Tree Amigos sticker on the seat tube so I assume its an original and not a Ross.

    The paint is not in the best of shape but I hope after washing and waxing it, it will look nice enough. I like the colors.

    I tried mocking up my 48-40-28 crankset to it and it didn't fit. I will have to put a wider spindle in there. I just hope the chainline lines up. Because I'm forced to use an Ultegra front derailleur, I can't really use a crankset less than a 48 on there. I tried a 46-36-26 and the Ultegra just didn't like shifting that one bit. When I get some money, I will buy one of those derailleurs that I read about in this thread that work with road shifters but have a smaller cage for small MTB cranksets.

    EVen though the 'Cuda has a top pull derailleur, I noticed that it has a bolt on the seat tube that I could put a pulley on and then I can use a standard bottom pull derailleur.

    I'm just going to donate my Rockhopper frame to the co-op. Someone will like it!
    "When dealing with stuff like this consider that this is a bicycle, not a spaceship." -- FBinNY

  23. #1073
    I like old stuff
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainstreetexile View Post
    That's a sweet stem. Anybody know the maker?
    Pretty sure sine thats a Cunningham, the maker of the stem is would be Charlie Cunningham.

    To the best of my knowledge, in the 1980's LD stems were made available by; Steve Potts, Charlie Cunningham, and Scott Nicol.
    Difficult to tell whose were whose unless you have the history of the stem or are up on the builders welds. Of course, like all bike stuff there were other versions done in the decades before and there are a few people making versions of this stem now.
    Seek: Early 80's Mountain Goat Bar/Stem Combo.

  24. #1074
    I like old stuff
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    Quote Originally Posted by realestvin7 View Post
    It's an LD stem. Only way to find one now is to have someone make one. Those who have them rarely sell them. It'll set you back $100 or more to have one made. More if you find a legit used one.
    I would gladly pay $100 for an original LD from Potts/Nicol/ or Cunningham.....

    It is cool people who have the ability are producing them again.

    Nothing looks better on a dirt drop project than an LD stem (along with a Salsa P7/P10).
    Seek: Early 80's Mountain Goat Bar/Stem Combo.

  25. #1075
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    I scooped up a couple of mountain bikes a few weeks ago: a Rockhopper and a Lotus Cherokee. I actually wanted the Cherokee most, but both parties responded to my lower offer, so I felt beholden to take 'em both. At any rate, once I got them home I decided to work with the one in worst condition and the Rockhopper won, hands down. I replaced: bottom bracket, seat post, saddle, pedals. Installed: stem, drop bars, Tektro levers, and Suntour barcons (by way of irvri). Before:


    After:


    It's still a work in progress. The brakes and the shifting both need some fine tuning, and the saddle is only a stand in for a Brooks, but my short test rides have been a blast.

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