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Old 07-10-14, 11:47 AM   #1
Barbarian
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Nishiki Barbarian Advice

This is my Nishiki Barbarian, serial number 3C A90021775. Bought for $20 a few years back from someone who had owned it from new. It's my first real project, and I'm looking for input. Should I be considering a full restoration and repaint, or maybe just refurbish and protect. Is there a way to get decals recreated? Shimano throughout, Exage 500LX. Shifters, derailleurs, hubs, crankset. Brake levers and calipers also Shimano, though no model shown. I'm Unsure of the bottom bracket. I've been having trouble with the front shifter/derailleurs, they wont pull onto the largest chainring. I've heard of them sticking after years of use, is there a way to fix this? The bottom bracket also needs a replacement or repair, suggestions.





















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Old 07-10-14, 12:17 PM   #2
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That looks like a cool and unique bike.

Personally, I don't think the bike is in poor enough shape to do a repaint. It's not really high endy enough to invest in a "just because" repaint.

The biggest thing is a clean up and lube everything. That'll probably take care of your shifting problems and probably take care of your BB problems.

What leads you to believe that your BB is shot?
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Old 07-10-14, 12:32 PM   #3
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Cranks wiggle, noise while peddling. Any suggestion on refinishing the frame as is, for protection and to keep the vintage look intact? Would just a good clean and clear coat be the best choice?
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Old 07-10-14, 12:42 PM   #4
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Personally, I'd just wash and wax. A nice protectant wax at the auto parts section. I'm using a Meguiar's thing on my bikes.

Get it all cleaned and lubed up. If you don't want to do the work (invest in the tools, afraid of effing up the bike etc), check to see how much it would be at a local bike shop (LBS).
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Old 07-10-14, 02:57 PM   #5
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Cranks wiggle, noise while peddling. Any suggestion on refinishing the frame as is, for protection and to keep the vintage look intact? Would just a good clean and clear coat be the best choice?
I think you're over-thinking it. It's lasted all these years without all kinds of protection. I would just clean it. If you want to put on any protection at all, just go with a good automotive wax.

As for the bottom bracket, just get a cartridge bottom bracket from a bike shop.
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Old 07-10-14, 03:44 PM   #6
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Most of the swapped paint on your frame will come off with a little fine cut rubbing compound. After that, a good wax and you'll likely be happy with the results. That's a colorful and unusual paint scheme and it would be a shame to cover it with some generic look.

I bet the derailleurs will work fine with a clean & lube & new cables; from the pix, they don't look bent or worn out (although pix don't always tell). Bottom bracket is easy enough to replace.
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Old 07-10-14, 03:46 PM   #7
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That marks may come off with a good coat of wax; I would try that before the rubbing compound.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 07-10-14, 06:01 PM   #8
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Funky bike for sure!!

That 500LX was pretty good stuff and I agree with the others I bet a real good cleaning/overhaul will have that shining like a new penny and running like a top!!

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Old 07-10-14, 06:08 PM   #9
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A great vintage Elevated-stay mtb. The finish isn't so bad and should be preserved. Some touch up paint and wax, the finish looks worthy of saving. The components are decent too, Exage 500LX is top of the Exage line up. Chainrings are aluminum instead of steel, cantilevers are better spec, and you have the U-brake mounted at the seat stays.

The BB cup may be loose.

I have a similar frame with 500LX in a Titan Cycles 500LX. Your's looks way better.

$20 is a great score for this Nishiki.

Edit: I just noticed the the extra bracing in the frame....similar to the Nishiki Alien/Ariel bikes. Cunningham probably had some input to this model too!
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Old 07-13-14, 01:10 PM   #10
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Gave it a good clean and polish yesterday, looks much better, though does anyone know how products such as NU finish works on components and other aluminum hardware? After a little tuning and a wheel true, it's running much more smoothly. There are still shifting problems, my rear downshifter is still sticking, it will advance just no clicking back into position. I doused it in penetrating oil, then lube. Also when i get in to the smaller cassette rings, my pedals are jumping. Any clue as to the cause/solution. I thought touch up paint might stand out, do you have any suggestions for seamless cover ups? As of now I'm wanting to touch the paint up, replace/reapair BB, new bars and pedals, rear pannier and bottle cages.
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Old 07-13-14, 02:29 PM   #11
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Are the shifters sticking or the derailleur? If it's the trigger shifters- you might want to google for that- there have been numerous ways the shifters have been cleaned out.

What do you mean your "pedals are jumping?"

Are the gears changing when you're in higher gears and not in lower gears? Or is this related to the shifters sticking?
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Old 07-14-14, 01:07 PM   #12
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Chain jumps to larger sprockets when on the smallest, and the chain slips when on the next two. I gave them a good clean with no positive results
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Old 07-14-14, 03:08 PM   #13
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With the age of your bike the cables and housing can cause binding, causing the bike appear to shift by itself- same thing for the derailleur- it clicks to the next gear because the shifter pulls the right amount of cable- if your tension isn't adjusted properly it'll almost shift or maybe shift, but want to go back as things move around.

There's some great "how to adjust a derailleur" videos on the YouTubes.

I guess the quick, cheap way is check out the videos, adjust the derailleur- if you've still got problems replace the cables and housing.

As an aside, I used to not believe that housing made much of a difference. I had some housing that I thought looked cool and it looked like it was in good shape to me. My bike shifted for garbage and I couldn't get it to work right. I had 2 LBSs tell me to get new housing- and I apparently knew better- but as soon as I replaced the housing- magic happened.
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Old 07-15-14, 01:52 AM   #14
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I suppose a good clean of the housing might also help?
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Old 07-15-14, 06:12 AM   #15
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Cables, housings, chains and cogs are a lot better now than they were back then.
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Old 10-05-16, 06:14 PM   #16
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Another style Nishiki Barbarian.
Has the same frame markings but runs deore components.
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Old 10-06-16, 06:49 AM   #17
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Another style Nishiki Barbarian.
Has the same frame markings but runs deore components.
The Barbarian was a Canadian market model. The OP's model is the 1990 version, the year that Norco updated it with elevated chainstays and switched to Deore 500LX. Yours pre-dates it and appears to be the 1989 version based on the white (SR?) crankset and white (Sanshin?) hubs. Serial number?
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Old 10-06-16, 07:07 AM   #18
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MT-60 stuff is pretty much the cat's pyjamas.
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Old 10-06-16, 07:10 AM   #19
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What year did the Barbarian come out? It was my first real mountain bike and was replaced by a 1986 Cannondale. So I'd guess mine was 84-85? Sold it to my brother in law and remember trying it later and being horrified by how "fast" the steering was. Must have been road bike head angles made worse by the fashionable short bars of the time.
I watch for one for sale but you almost never see one - and almost no info on the web.
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Old 10-06-16, 07:37 AM   #20
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Chain jumps to larger sprockets when on the smallest, and the chain slips when on the next two. I gave them a good clean with no positive results
Maybe, just maybe it's the shifters. I had a buddy that brought over his mountain bike with sticky Rapid Fire shifters - one lever shifts up, the other shifts down. I had to go to the interwebs to come up with a solution. Squirt some WD-40 up into the mechanism and it may help.
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Old 10-06-16, 09:06 AM   #21
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Maybe, just maybe it's the shifters. I had a buddy that brought over his mountain bike with sticky Rapid Fire shifters - one lever shifts up, the other shifts down. I had to go to the interwebs to come up with a solution. Squirt some WD-40 up into the mechanism and it may help.
Hopefully, he's got it figured out by now, That post is over 2 years old.
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Old 10-06-16, 09:10 AM   #22
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What year did the Barbarian come out? It was my first real mountain bike and was replaced by a 1986 Cannondale. So I'd guess mine was 84-85? Sold it to my brother in law and remember trying it later and being horrified by how "fast" the steering was. Must have been road bike head angles made worse by the fashionable short bars of the time.
I watch for one for sale but you almost never see one - and almost no info on the web.
I'm not sure when it came out, other than it was after 1983. The 1st Canadian Market Nishiki ATB was the Bushwhacker.
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