Thank you for your welcoming me. I did purchase the 1983 Fuji del Rey 58cm. Like I said, it was advertised as "near mint condition", "garage kept", etc. Drove 60 miles to pick it up to find that although there was no rust or damage, the bike was hiding under what appeared to be 30 years worth of dirt, grease, sweat, and general grime. Also, the bike was equipped with just about every accessory I could imagine (cargo racks, cargo bags, an air pump clipped onto the frame, headlight, kickstand, toe-clips, bell, etc.). It was unsightly, and when I tried to take it for a quick spin, the chain broke in three places. But, I drove 60 miles, the bike seemed to fit, and considering the absence of rust or apparent structural damage, I figured I could spend some time trying to restore it back to a respectable vehicle. Offered $75 and struck a deal!
First thing I did was strip all the accessories from the bike. Then, removed old brake lever hoods (which were deteriorated to the consistency of semi-hardened tree-sap) and handle bar tape. It took me two days of after-work scrubbing to clean the bars and levers. Next, I removed, cleaned and polished all other components (brake calipers, derailleurs, shifters, crankset, etc.). Polished and cleaned everything with excellent results - everything cleaned up real nice! Gave the frame a nice bath, replaced chain and all cables, scrubbed rims and spokes with 000 steel wool, re-assembled bike, tuned and adjusted brakes and derailleurs, installed new brake lever hoods and bar tape.
Took it for a quick 10 mile spin yesterday - I am absolutely thrilled with how this bike turned out!
Here's some pics...whattya think? I'm kinda bummed that I didn't think to take "before" pics before I started, but very happy with results. This is my first restore. Can't wait to get home and ride today!