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Thread: 54 in Indy

  1. #1
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    54 in Indy

    Hello,

    I'm 54 years old, and have enjoyed riding bikes since I was a kid. Unfortunately, I'm now a big city street rider. I miss the streets I used to ride back in my small hometown in Ohio. I already posted my introduction in the Introductions forum, so I won't repeat it here.

    My current ride is an Austro-Daimler Pacifica 10-speed road/touring bike, which I purchased new in the mid-1980s. I can't remember exactly when I bought it, or how much I paid, but it's been a good bike. Here's some info I've been able to get off the bike.

    Austro-Daimler Pacifica
    Frame Serial Number: 7025645
    Frame: Puch-Original 2700 Chrom Molybdan Tubing
    Front Fork: Puch-Original 2500 High-Tensile Fork Blades
    Handlebars: Friko Touring Super (drops)
    Brake Handles: Weinmann with rubber boot
    Brake Calipers: Weinmann Type 500
    Derailleur Front and Rear: Sun Tour ARX
    Derailleur Shifters: Sun Tour Power Shifter
    Crank Nut / Chainring: SR (Probably stands for Sakae Ringyo)
    Cranks: Sistar 170 SR (or SA) 53 (Probably SR for Sakae Ringyo)
    Pedals: U44 W. Germany
    Toe Clips: (Brevet) Mini Christophe (Made in France)
    Front Sprocket Chainrings: 52, 40
    Rear Sprockets: 14, 17, 21, 26, 32 - Maillard (Made in France)
    Rims: Weinmann 17x630, 27"x1.14" [edit on closer inspection the rim is marked 1.14" not 1-1/4"]
    Hub Front: Maillard (Made in France) +04 32
    Hub Rear: Maillard (Made in France) +20 82
    Quick Disconnects: Spidel
    Tires: Continental Sport 1000 (Not original - These replacements were installed 3/2000)

    This could have been one of the last Austro-Daimler bikes produced. According to someone who had worked for Steyr-Daimler-Puch of America from the late 1970's through 1980, the bicycle division of Steyr-Daimler-Puch went out of business in 1987. The bicycle inventory, and the name Puch bicycles, was purchased by Bianchi of Italy. Steyr-Daimler retained the Austro-Daimler name. Here's a link to the info from Sheldon Brown's web site.

    If anyone knows more about this bike, and could help me date it, via the frame serial number or other means, I'd appreciate the input.

    As I mentioned in my introduction, I've been thinking about getting an upright rider. My long, old back gets a little grumpy after holding those drops a while. Also something with more gears would help me negotiate some of the steep hills I have around here. Any suggestions?

    That's probably enough for now.
    Last edited by riding2wheels; 05-28-09 at 03:01 PM.

  2. #2
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    I remember those A-D bikes from back in the day, though I never owned one. Good looking bikes, as I recall, and yours seems to be authentic (which is kind of odd, since if you've been riding it since you were a kid, it's surprising that you haven't updated the components as they wore out).

    If it were me, I would keep the A-D as an historic piece, preserve it well . . . and go out and buy an up-to-date bike. Regarding the "Upright Rider" I would advise against it, but of course it's your call. Or maybe I'm mis-understanding your term?

    In either case, it's certainly possible to get a taller stem and still keep all the advantages of the drop bar.

    Rick / OCRR

  3. #3
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    My A-D has been very reliable. Only one tune-up 9 years ago. I bought it when I was around 30 years old, in the mid-1980s. I rode it a lot the first 3 years or so after I bought it, probably around 50-100 miles a week, maybe 6-7 months a year. I lived in Ohio during that time, and didn't have weather suitable for riding 12 months a year. It's only seen sporadic use since then. I guess I've not ridden it long or hard enough to wear out the major components, or it's just tough as a tank. I know that my friends' wore out stuff on their bikes, and we rode about the same miles, as we'd ride together several times a week.

    By upright rider I mean something like a hybrid. I've got back problems, and riding the drops can be painful. Also, I now ride alone 100% of the time, so I don't have the luxury of a pack of bikes to protect me from cars. The nuts around here drive like they're doing quallies for the Indy 500, and have no respect for cyclists. I might feel a little safer if I was in a more upright position. I'm also doing a lot of stop and go riding now--stop signs and traffic lights--so the toe clips can be a bit of a pain. Think in terms of commuter, recreation, and exercise riding.

    Yes, I plan on keeping my A-D forever. That's part of the reason I was thinking about getting something other than another road/touring bike. But at this point I'm just doing some research. I really want to ride more than I have been, and back pain and safety concerns are the things that have been keeping me from riding more.

    Thanks for your input.

  4. #4
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    Rick@OCRR, I forgot, they also replaced all cabling and some bolts during the tune-up 9 years ago. But the components are all still in great shape.

  5. #5
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    I'm with Rick. Don't be too quick to abandon drop bars due to a bad back. My bad back is more comfortable stretched out on my road bike than in the upright position of a hybrid. In fact, the more I ride it, the better my back feels. I did install a taller stem to raise my handlebars a little, but not so high that too much weight shifted to my bottom. Each back is different, but that has been my experience.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  6. #6
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    BluesDawg, I'm really not looking to replace and abandon my A-D road bike, but possibly buy a 2nd bike to supplement it. Something different, perhaps with more comfort, upright riding position, fork and seat post suspension, and flat pedals. Something to possibly put a rack and bag/panniers on, for trips to the store, the library, etc. This would allow me to get out and ride more than what I'm doing now, which is my primary goal.

    I can't afford $1,000+ for a road bike matching or exceeding the quality of my A-D, and I'm really pretty happy with my A-D as a road/touring bike. I'm just looking into the possibility of getting something different in a 2nd bike, for different uses. I'll still use the A-D, as I really do enjoy riding it.

    I agree, when I'm able to stay on the drops for extended periods of time, it's not so bad. The problem I now face is, since I've moved to a big city in a different state, I'm doing mostly stop-and-go city riding--constantly pulling the feet out of the toe clips, putting a foot on the ground, standing up, etc. A big hassle. It seems to be mostly the constant up-and-down movement that causes me the most back pain. I haven't yet found a suitable, safe place, within a reasonable distance from my home, to stretch it out for miles of uninterrupted, continuous riding, like I used to do.

  7. #7
    Senior Member dendawg's Avatar
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    You might want to have a look at the fit. Some tweaking might be all thats needed to make the bike comfortable. In 24 years I'm sure your body has changed, and you're probably not as flexible as you were.

    BTW my wife is from Greenfield. For the last four years we've traveled to Bloomington in October for the Hilly Hundred Weekend. We're skipping this year, but if you've never done it, its a great bicycling weekend.

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    dendawg, no question about body change (additional weight) and reduced flexibility. That's the main reason I want to ride more often. So rechecking the fit is a great idea. The LBS will do a "general" body fit for $120, using sophisticated computer software and sensors. I don't know if I want to go that route. I think it would be overkill for the riding I do. But I should recheck the seat and handlebar position.

    I've read about the Hilly Hundred, and other rides. I'm really not into organized rides. I guess I'm just not that type of rider. I've always enjoyed the freedom of riding alone, whatever that says about me.

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    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riding2wheels View Post
    I've read about the Hilly Hundred, and other rides. I'm really not into organized rides. I guess I'm just not that type of rider. I've always enjoyed the freedom of riding alone, whatever that says about me.

    Another solo rider here- but those organised rides do give a different perspective to riding. I do several a year and for two reasons- First is that it is a way of judging yourself up against other riders- or if it is an event I have done previously- How well or badly my fitness/cycling has progressed.

    Secondly- and I do know of some events I will never do again- Some events have such good routes or scenery on them- that I just enjoy doing them. I have an Autumn 65 miler I try to do every year as The scenery is fantastic- and the route is good enough to say it is a challenge- but not a killer.

    And make certain that the second bike is going to be up to your standard. Nothing worse than getting dragged into buying that nice shiny bike- only to find out that it is not as good a ride as what you currently have. Look second hand- as you seem to know what bikes are about- and look for the "Extra" quality of a used cheaper bike that will get ridden.

    I can still do the organised rides solo if I wish- but it is enjoyable doing a few miles in a pace line at a speed just a bit faster than I would normally do- or chat to a couple of other riders- or just enjoy the scenery as I pass by it.
    Last edited by stapfam; 05-27-09 at 02:30 PM.
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    stapfam, I can understand why others would enjoy groups rides. And I might even find something to like in some of them. As an only child, I've just always been used to doing a lot of things by myself, including riding my bike. It's my chance to be alone with my thoughts, and get away from life's stresses and distractions.

    I no longer care how my riding compares to others. I don't even have a cycloputer. I now ride purely for entertainment and exercise. I'll push myself to ride fast for a while, then I'll slow down and enjoy the scenery. I used to ride fast and faster. But since I started riding again, after about a 10 year layoff, and carrying an additional 35 pounds or so, I only ride slow, medium, and fast in much shorter spurts.

    Yes, a used bike might be a smarter choice. I've not been too thrilled with what I've found that $600 would buy me in a new bike. I could potentially get a better designed and built frame, and better components for $600 on a used bike. I have been looking at the used listing, but haven't found anything that really appealed to me yet.

    So maybe I should get my A-D back in roadworthy shape, ride it for a month or so, then see if I really want to spend the money on a 2nd bike this year, or spend it on a complete overhaul of my A-D, and get some better tires. I started another thread in the Classic & Vintage section asking for advice on the overhaul and tire issue.

  11. #11
    Senior Member dendawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riding2wheels View Post
    stapfam, I can understand why others would enjoy groups rides. And I might even find something to like in some of them. As an only child, I've just always been used to doing a lot of things by myself, including riding my bike. It's my chance to be alone with my thoughts, and get away from life's stresses and distractions.

    I no longer care how my riding compares to others. I don't even have a cycloputer. I now ride purely for entertainment and exercise. I'll push myself to ride fast for a while, then I'll slow down and enjoy the scenery. I used to ride fast and faster. But since I started riding again, after about a 10 year layoff, and carrying an additional 35 pounds or so, I only ride slow, medium, and fast in much shorter spurts.
    There are group rides and organized rides. The wife and I like the latter. You get a cue sheet and ride at your own pace. There are rest stops and SAG if you need it. The Hilly Hundred is an organized 2 day ride. You do 50 miles a day at your own pace. There are rest stops with good food every 15 miles or so. And even though there are 5000 other riders out there, its your own ride. Also FWIW I'm 35 lbs lighter than when I started riding 5 years ago, and my blood pressure is normal without any medication.

  12. #12
    Senior Member ntime60's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riding2wheels View Post
    I no longer care how my riding compares to others. I don't even have a cycloputer. I now ride purely for entertainment and exercise. I'll push myself to ride fast for a while, then I'll slow down and enjoy the scenery. I used to ride fast and faster. But since I started riding again, after about a 10 year layoff, and carrying an additional 35 pounds or so, I only ride slow, medium, and fast in much shorter spurts.
    I'm right there with ya. I turn 53 this year. Our primary reason for getting bikes was to
    1. Get fit
    2. Enjoy the outdoors
    3. Spend some quality time together
    4. Simply enjoy the ride while doing 1-3

    I have different reasons for wanting a cycloputer. I'm a geek and I like the electronic toys. Much of it is my own insatiable curiosity.

    I've noticed with the wife and I that the time and distance goes by easier while you are just biking around talking and checking out the scenery.

    But when I do the solo thing, I'm much more into the speed thing and making myself work.
    2009 Trek 7.3 (Black), Cateye Strada /w cadence. My Cycling Adventures

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    Quote Originally Posted by dendawg View Post
    Also FWIW I'm 35 lbs lighter than when I started riding 5 years ago, and my blood pressure is normal without any medication.
    Sounds like cycling has been good for your health.

    My blood pressure has always been excellent, but I have some other problems. I suppose the most serious is that I'm a diabetic, adult Type 2, diagnosed in July 2002, and have developed some of the issues associated with diabetes. I need to exercise to loose weight and help control my glucose levels.

    I have some physical problems which make exercise difficult. I have a leaking popliteal valve in my left leg, which causes my leg and foot to swell up like balloons at times, which is painful. I also have a couple of problems with my feet which makes standing and walking painful.

    So biking is my choice for cardiovascular exercise.

    I'm apprehensive to go on long organized or group rides partially because of my health and physical issues. I need to follow a very strict diet (intake and schedule) to control my glucose level, because I don't take any meds. That might be difficult on the long rides. I don't even eat in restaurants anymore.

    I would have enjoyed doing those rides 20 years ago, and did do long touring rides with friends back then. But I just can't see me doing them now.

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    ntime60, I like your list, and it matches mine, except my significant other doesn't ride.

    I have no issues with cycloputers. In fact, I'll probably get one just to chart my exercise. I'd be most interested in one that can store milage, average and max MPH, maybe even something to monitor heart rate. But I don't think I'd want to pay extra for cadence features. That might make me start to think of cycling as work, which could spoil my fun and cause me to loose interest very quickly.

    But when I do the solo thing, I'm much more into the speed thing and making myself work.
    That's part of the reason I've always preferred riding alone.

    I've always enjoyed riding. Even as a kid, I was much more into riding my bike than other kids. I think it's great that cycling has grown in popularity in recent years. So I'm cool with whatever inspires and motivates people to cycle.

  15. #15
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riding2wheels View Post
    I have no issues with cycloputers. In fact, I'll probably get one just to chart my exercise. I'd be most interested in one that can store milage, average and max MPH, maybe even something to monitor heart rate. But I don't think I'd want to pay extra for cadence features. That might make me start to think of cycling as work, which could spoil my fun and cause me to loose interest very quickly.



    Last year I got myself a Garmin Edge 305 GPS. It incorporated all I want in one unit and it is marvellous. I even spent extra on the Cadence and Heart monitor and Have to agree about the cadence monitor. Good idea to check on what I am doing occasionally- but I did find it annoying to find I was below par on a long ride when I was shattered going up a hill and I have run out of gears. I just don't use it now. Heart monitor and that I use as a check on how hard I am working. It is so easy to slacken off and just ride at what is comfortable- instead of what is making you just work hard enough to keep you fit(ter).

    But going back to those "Organised rides" Dendawg does them for the same reason as me. The ride normally has a backup for breakdowns- Is on a route that will be cycle friendly and choose the ride correctly and you can do the distance and severity of the ride that you want. Ride it as an individual or get social with a couple of riders for a few miles. Or if you want a workout-tag onto a "Group" of riders that are just a bit faster than you want. Or if you just want to go out and ride- then just do that.
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    I haven't looked at cycloputers, or whatever you call them. But having a GPS included would be handy.

    I'm sure that there are a lot of reasons to enjoy group or organized rides, and it's great that people put them together for those that want to do them. I have nothing against them. I just don't think they would be good for me, for the reasons I've already mentioned.

  17. #17
    Senior Member dendawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riding2wheels View Post
    I haven't looked at cycloputers, or whatever you call them. But having a GPS included would be handy.

    I'm sure that there are a lot of reasons to enjoy group or organized rides, and it's great that people put them together for those that want to do them. I have nothing against them. I just don't think they would be good for me, for the reasons I've already mentioned.
    I also use the edge 305 which uses GPS, but has no mapping capability. If you have deep pockets you might want to look into the newer edge 705. I have both the heart rate and cadence sensors, but you can get it with just the heart rate strap

  18. #18
    Senior Member oldbobcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    I'm with Rick. Don't be too quick to abandon drop bars due to a bad back. My bad back is more comfortable stretched out on my road bike than in the upright position of a hybrid.
    I second that. Your back and abdominal muscles are better suited for absorbing road shock than your spinal discs. And I strongly recommend looking for a chiropractor who is experienced in treating athletes.

  19. #19
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    I too have an old Puch - given to me by a friend who had it hanging in his barn since the late 70's. He bought it used, rode it for a number of years and then hung it up in the barn. When he noticed how much I rode it showed up on my front porch. I know it is ancient as he told me he bought it used from a guy who had had it a long time. I am guessing it is late 60s or early 70s. All the components are original on mine accept my friend went to shifters on the middle of the bars - removing the down tube shifters. MIne is so old it has a cottered crank and the wheels have bolts rather than skewers. I am guessing the tubing is nothing exotic as it pings like gas pipe - a dull ping where as my Columbus tubing bike has a high pitch ping - like fine crystal. The bike must be about 25 lbs. Anyway - I ride mine to work and don't bother putting a lock on it. It has a nice soft ride but it is not like my newer bikes - they ride & perform so much better. My advice would be to keep looking until you find a nice used bike - good frame and that has a 9 to 10 speed cassett, then you can start upgrading components over time as required.

    Good luck
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  20. #20
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    dendawg, my pockets are pretty shallow at the moment. But I'll look at cycloputers once I have everything else on my ride sorted out.

    oldbobcat, Yes, I understand that the back is more exposed to harmful road shock in an upright riding position, as that compresses the spine. I've been to several different chiropractors, many times, over the years, and found that they could only give me a small amount of temporary relief, at best, and only provided quasi long-term relief if you saw them on a routine basis. I can't afford to put their kids through college anymore.

    cyclinfool, I think I've pretty much decided that I'll keep riding my road bike, at least for this summer, because I'm not convinced that spending $600 or so on a new or used bike would necessarily be an upgrade, and I probably wouldn't be happy with a bike I could get at that price point. No offense, but I'd bet that my mid-1980s Austro-Daimler Pacifica is a better bike than your 1960s-70s Puch, and, at least to me, worth putting some money into. I'm happy for you that you have that vintage bike. If it gets you from A to B, then it's probably worth more than a cheap lock would cost you.

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