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Old 10-10-08, 08:30 PM   #1
justa
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Need everybody's help and advice for a bicycle revival......

I have a 84 Raleigh Team USA Olympic 12 speed. It has been sitting out for 5 years. I have now put on new tires and tubes, gel seat, shimano petals, and a chain. Looks like I am gonna need a derailler, brake cables, and a LOT of all of you on this forum to get this bike ready to go again. I want this bike to be ready for a Georgia to Oregon ride next spring. Help or advice would be greatly appreciated. Please fire away
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Old 10-10-08, 08:52 PM   #2
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You need to list the problems you are having so that advice can be given
(I have a customer that has done the MS150 on a coaster brake beach cruiser, your Olympic has to be better equipped than that)
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Old 10-10-08, 08:55 PM   #3
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This bike will not stay in gear while riding it. It also had brake squeaks on front wheel. Rear wheel needs spoke tune up.
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Old 10-10-08, 08:58 PM   #4
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first of all, take off the petals and put on some pedals. although they may add to the decor and style of the frame, they'll just create wind resistance and slow you down.

don't get a gel seat. get a hard seat. they're better if you're riding long distance 'cause it doesn't put pressure on the area between your legs just behind your manliness (i am assuming you're male since the majority of the members here are male). a soft seat increases pressure on that area which can cause you to be numb up front and/or hurt and/or do damage.

i got a rock-hard seat and it's great (Serfas Stinger).
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Old 10-10-08, 09:03 PM   #5
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This bike will not stay in gear while riding it. It also had brake squeaks on front wheel. Rear wheel needs spoke tune up.
i'm assuming you're not running friction shifters? indexed shifters? if so, to fix the "not staying in gear" problem, you need to play with the adjustment screws on the rear or front derailleur (whichever is giving the problem).

replace the brake pads. even if they're good now. if i get a new bike i always replace the pads (you can't put a price on safety).

clean the front rim with rubbing alcohol. not WD-40. not any other grease. this ruins your braking power.

you can buy a spoke key to tune up those spokes (simply turn the nipples). or, you can bring it intothe shop.

www.sheldonbrown.com

check out that site.
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Old 10-10-08, 09:04 PM   #6
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I am female. I rode before with a gel seat, so I thought since I haven't rode since kindergarden (23 Years) I needed that gel! Any guess as to the derailler I might need? the frame has model number 555sl on it.
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Old 10-10-08, 09:07 PM   #7
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This bike will not stay in gear while riding it. It also had brake squeaks on front wheel. Rear wheel needs spoke tune up.

Friction shift? Then you need to tighten the screws holding the shifters in place. If the bike has indexed shifitng, an adjustment, to cable tension, is needed.
Brake sqweek is a toe issue, the leading edge of the pad needs to touch the rim first. This helps prevent the vibration that causes the sqweek.
Wheel trueing is better left to someone that knows what they are doing(Don't listen to anyone here that says any fool can true a wheel. I make good money from people that beleive this)
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Old 10-10-08, 09:08 PM   #8
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I am female. I rode before with a gel seat, so I thought since I haven't rode since kindergarden (23 Years) I needed that gel! Any guess as to the derailler I might need? the frame has model number 555sl on it.
i'm not going to pretend i know anything about female comfort on a bike, but i've heard that, generally speaking, harder seats are more comfortable.

you don't necessarily need a new derailleur. you just need to tune it.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/derailer-adjustment.html

if it's old, i recommend taking out those gears on it, cleaning the whole unit, and greasing the gears. how thorough of a job do you want to do? i kinda enjoy the mechanical stuff, but understand not everyone else does.
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Old 10-10-08, 09:10 PM   #9
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Don't listen to anyone here that says any fool can true a wheel. I make good money from people that beleive this
mmm, i'll agree with him on that one. it's not magic, though, truing a wheel.
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Old 10-10-08, 09:14 PM   #10
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Ilove to tinker and get things working like new. I have had this bike since it was new and am ready to make this baby humming again
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Old 10-10-08, 09:18 PM   #11
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most of the mechanical stuff you can figure out on your own (bikes are simple). that sheldon brown site is like a biker's bible. use it as a reference tool. or come here. w.e. people here are friendly.

if you're planning on doing a serious ride in the spring, and you're not used to biking, i highly recommend getting an indoor bike trainer so you can build up your strength over the winter.
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Old 10-10-08, 09:19 PM   #12
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Another problem is the rust on the gear cogs. How do I get the rust off the chrome?
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Old 10-10-08, 09:20 PM   #13
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I am very serious about making a spring trip. I am working hard to get in condition for this trip.
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Old 10-11-08, 01:04 AM   #14
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Ilove to tinker and get things working like new. I have had this bike since it was new and am ready to make this baby humming again
A ride from Georgia to Oregon will take a substantial commitment, both of your time and money. Personally, I'd want the most dependable, comfortable, best-suited bike for the trip. I'd be doing some research for a new bike, unless I had some strong emotional attachment to the older bike.
But maybe I'm the opposite of you. I hate to be constantly be tinkering with anything to get it to work properly.
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Old 10-11-08, 05:44 AM   #15
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I do LOVE this Ralreigh. It is my first and only bike. However, after reading this forum, I will get others. When I got this bike I planned this trip. I am riding day trips now from 10 to 25 miles a day.
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Old 10-11-08, 07:26 AM   #16
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Good luck on the trip, sounds like fun.

If I was planning a similar trip, I'd want a reasonably high quality bike, and I'd want it now so I could spend a lot of time on it between now and the trip. That gives you time to get any mechanical kinks worked out of it, make all the adjustments you need, plus training for yourself.

If it's flat where you live, go find some hills. If you have little hills, go find some big hills to practice on.

From my tinkering on the mountain bike I formerly had, I found the derailleur had adjustment screws that would get it centered over a gear, had limit screws to stop it at either end of the range, and then you could adjust the cable on top of that. It took some playing with it to get everything more or less right. It also had some flex that couldn't be remedied other than by upgrading.
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