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  1. #1
    Senior Member dpayne's Avatar
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    Bridgestone "before" pics

    These are pics of a Bridgestone 300 I found locked up to a fence and abandoned outside my office building in Baltimore. At some point the front wheel got kicked in or otherwise bent, and apparently the owner decided it was done for. After nagging security about it for months, they finally cut the lock on it, held it for the mandatory 30 days, and then let me take it.

    Based on some digging around on the internet, I'm guessing this is probably a mid-80's bike. Does anyone know anything about this particular model of Bridgestone? If so, I'd be glad to hear it. Saw some general info on Sheldon Brown's site, but haven't had much luck otherwise.

    I'm planning on having it powdercoated, buying some IRO hubs and building up the wheels myself, and getting a new chain and cog, bullhorn bars, and a seat. I'm hoping I can reuse the cranks, bottom bracket (iffy), inside chainring (42), stem, headset, front brake, and seatpost (iffy). I have some cheap clip pedals I think I can make do with for a while and some Performance kevlar tires.

    Questions:
    Do the rear dropouts look long enough to adjust for chain tension?
    The little screw and spring adjusters in the dropouts---are they worth keeping, or should I just get rid of them? (They're a little rusty anyway, so if I really wanted them, I might have to search for replacements.)
    If I strip the paint off the frame myself, how much would it save me versus having the powdercoater do it? (little nervous about having them sandblast it, as I've heard that can weaken the tubes)
    There are quite a few small rusty spots on the frame; I'm a little concerned about structural integrity, especially considering how many months this bike was left outside---any tips on determining whether there might be weak spots in the frame or rust on the inside of the tubes?
    A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.

  2. #2
    Retrogrouch in Training bostontrevor's Avatar
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    Congrats, Bridgestone is a fine marque. I don't have the answers you seek (quick, which movie?) but the folks in the vintage forum might, as might the iBOB list, and lastly the fine folks at Rivendell (Grant Peterson, founder of Riv was the head of Bridgestone USA).

    Those dropouts should be long enough, particularly if you consider a half link among your options.

  3. #3
    Frankly, Mr. Shankly absntr's Avatar
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    Should be fine - makes a good conversion.

    Built one up for my roommate a while ago (a 400, not a 300 but more or less similar):
    Your Fixed Gear/SS Photos!

  4. #4
    laterally compliant keevohn's Avatar
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    I too had a built up 400 for a while, and really liked it.

    Just make sure yours isn't too rusted on the inside. Could lead to chainstay breakage.

  5. #5
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    Dump a bunch of Rust Reformer into each tube and hope that the rust hasn't detroyed too much of the tube.

  6. #6
    Total Hack labratmatt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpayne
    Questions:
    Do the rear dropouts look long enough to adjust for chain tension?
    The little screw and spring adjusters in the dropouts---are they worth keeping, or should I just get rid of them? (They're a little rusty anyway, so if I really wanted them, I might have to search for replacements.)
    If I strip the paint off the frame myself, how much would it save me versus having the powdercoater do it? (little nervous about having them sandblast it, as I've heard that can weaken the tubes)
    There are quite a few small rusty spots on the frame; I'm a little concerned about structural integrity, especially considering how many months this bike was left outside---any tips on determining whether there might be weak spots in the frame or rust on the inside of the tubes?
    1. Yes. The rear dropouts look plenty long enough. They don't get much better.
    2. Dump the screws. Don't need them.
    3. No idea. Maybe $30? Complete guess.
    4. I would guess you would be fine. A bike has to be rusted to hell to be unsafe. To get a general feel for how much of the tube has rusted away, tap the tubes with the end of a wrench or similar tool and see if you can notice much of a change in tone. If you hear a real dead spot, take it to your LBS to get their opinon. I bet you're fine. The frame doesn't look too rusty to me. Go to your LBS and buy one of the rust proofing produects they sell.

    That is a nice frame. I'd be happy to have it for a conversion.

  7. #7
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Does it have Tange steel or Ritchey Logic decals?

  8. #8
    Senior Member dpayne's Avatar
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    Nope. One decal says "Bridgestone CR-MO Tubes"; another says "Made in Taiwan." It has Suntour deraileurs and shifters, dia-compe brakes and levers, sovos hubs, generic stem and hubset.

    I think I'll try to find some of the rust removal stuff and give it a try. Do they carry that at most LBS's? The bike's probably fine, but I remember reading a recent post here that someone had a chainstay break due to rust weakening it from the inside.
    A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.

  9. #9
    Total Hack labratmatt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpayne
    I think I'll try to find some of the rust removal stuff and give it a try. Do they carry that at most LBS's? The bike's probably fine, but I remember reading a recent post here that someone had a chainstay break due to rust weakening it from the inside.
    It's not really rust remover so much as it is rust stopper. I think it is just to keep it from rusting any more.

    My LBS has it. I would guess that most would have it or be able to order it for you. I think one of the bigger names is called something like Frame Saver.

  10. #10
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    JP Wiegel's Frame Saver is typically for protecting the inside of non-rusted frame tubes.
    If there's already rust, you can use Rustoleum Rust Reformer (available at your local hardware stores) to convert the rust into a hard protective coat.

  11. #11
    Total Hack labratmatt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlastRadius
    JP Wiegel's Frame Saver is typically for protecting the inside of non-rusted frame tubes.
    If there's already rust, you can use Rustoleum Rust Reformer (available at your local hardware stores) to convert the rust into a hard protective coat.
    Oh, so a product like Frame Saver won't stop rust? It just prevents it?

  12. #12
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    It may stop it from rusting further, but the rust would still be under the coating. Rust Reformer chemically neutralizes the rust that's there. I read about Phosphoric Acid wash and it seems you can do it with Coca Cola too. http://www.kzrider.com/rust_removal.shtml

    With my last refinish, I just poured Rust Reformer into the tube and let it completely coat the inside of the tube, then let it dry.

  13. #13
    Employee Smorgasbord's Avatar
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    Someone posted this a while back on rust:
    http://www.metalwebnews.com/howto/rust/rust.html

    I agree with Labratmatt's answers, though I have no idea for #3 either. An alternative to sandblasting is bead blasting (using glass beads) which is really what you should use for bicycle tubing. The painter should be able to do this.

    I have a Bridgestone 450 set up as a gearie, and I find it to be a pleasurable ride.

  14. #14
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    Ooo. That article is a keeper. Thanks.

  15. #15
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    Two other products to consider are POR 15 and Corroless.

  16. #16
    Senior Member dpayne's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info, all. Hopefully I'll have some respectable "after" pictures to post after a few weeks (months?).

    I completely took apart the bike earlier today, and that was a blast, in and of itself. Found out I can probably use most of the parts I wanted to. Still have to get a bottom bracket lockring tool to get the bottom bracket off (hopefully not expensive), but I think I can reuse it, too (although it is really crunchy and badly in need of being repacked with grease and new bearings).

    Oh---and I also found additional info on this model on Sheldon Brown's "Bridgestone" site. He has a 1987 Bridgestone catalog that features the 300 model. So, I can actually see how this model was originally specced out, and what the paint scheme looked like before 20 years of wear and tear. Pretty cool.

    Also talked to a couple of powdercoaters in the Baltimore area, and I'm a little discouraged. One had a minimum price of $135 and the other had a minimum of $150. If I can't find a place any cheaper than that, looks like I'll be pulling out the rattlecans. One benefit to that, though, is that I can be as creative as I want, adding panels designs and such, without it costing a lot extra.
    A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.

  17. #17
    Senior Member BillK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpayne
    Also talked to a couple of powdercoaters in the Baltimore area, and I'm a little discouraged. One had a minimum price of $135 and the other had a minimum of $150. If I can't find a place any cheaper than that, looks like I'll be pulling out the rattlecans. One benefit to that, though, is that I can be as creative as I want, adding panels designs and such, without it costing a lot extra.
    I found two in our area (I live east of D.C.), but haven't talked to either one yet:

    http://www.powdercoatfinishes.com/ (Baltimore, Maryland)
    http://www.eastcoastpowdercoat.com/index.htm (North East, Maryland)

    Please let us know if you find someone with a decent price.

  18. #18
    deep fried goodness harlot's Avatar
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    Save a Bridgestone, go to Heaven (or your local watering hole, whichever you prefer).

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpayne
    Thanks for the info, all. Hopefully I'll have some respectable "after" pictures to post after a few weeks (months?).

    Also talked to a couple of powdercoaters in the Baltimore area, and I'm a little discouraged. One had a minimum price of $135 and the other had a minimum of $150. If I can't find a place any cheaper than that, looks like I'll be pulling out the rattlecans. One benefit to that, though, is that I can be as creative as I want, adding panels designs and such, without it costing a lot extra.
    I contacted a couple of powdercoaters in my area and couldn't get anything for less then $200. I was willing to go 50-60 but the set up charges killed me.

  20. #20
    Senior Member dpayne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillK
    I found two in our area (I live east of D.C.), but haven't talked to either one yet:

    http://www.powdercoatfinishes.com/ (Baltimore, Maryland)
    http://www.eastcoastpowdercoat.com/index.htm (North East, Maryland)

    Please let us know if you find someone with a decent price.
    Yes---both of those are on my list. I haven't heard back from powdercoat finishes yet, but I got a quote from East Coast for $60 to $125, depending on the color choice, size and condition of frame, etc. This is the best price I've heard of in this area. However, I fear it will likely be a bait and switch deal, and will end up being on the $125 end. I'm willing to spend $50--$60, maybe even $70, but beyond that is too much for my commuter project. I want to save some $$ for the wheelset.

    Harlot---sweet bike---frame looks to be in excellent condition. Is that the original paint job?
    A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.

  21. #21
    deep fried goodness harlot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpayne
    Harlot---sweet bike---frame looks to be in excellent condition. Is that the original paint job?
    Thanks dpayne. Yep that's the original paint job and she's in great shape. Got her off da Ebay this fall. I think she was stored away in an attic for who knows how long, but at least she wasn't out in the elements! Only had some minor paint chips that some nail polish covered up.

    I couldn't find much info on this series of Bridgestones either, but it's nice to see others out there being restored. I kept the little dropout screw thingees cuz someone, um, "older and wiser" than me said they add style points. Good luck with your restoration and give us more pics later!

    Your Fixed Gear/SS Photos!

  22. #22
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    This is a 1987 Bridgestone 300. It should have all Suntour components. It is CrMo Straight Guage tubing. Check out this link: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/bridgest...ne-1987-25.htm

    Hope this helps.

    Todd
    Thanks,

    Todd
    Minneapolis, MN

  23. #23
    pure noise blipzandstripz's Avatar
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    The first good bike I ever had was a Bridgestone. I was stupid enough to trade it for drugs years ago, and have regretted it ever since. Every time I see a Bridgestone I smile and remember that bike that was plain as the day is long BUT never ever have I had a bike that was so dependable and solid. Everything about that Bridgestone was solid.

    I lost a lot of musical instruments and stereo equipment and other belongings to feed the drug monster, and the one I regret most is that Bridgestone that NEVER EVER let me down. Maybe that's attributing too much to a collection of steel and rubber, but it just seemed like it was "right".

  24. #24
    Senior Member dpayne's Avatar
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    After months of scrimping, saving, and accumulating parts, I finally finished this Bridgestone project. As I've mentioned in another thread, I had the frame and fork blasted and powdercoated the "ivy" green color and then painted the lugs black, myself. I re-used the original handlebars (flipped and clipped), stem, headset, front brake caliper, crank, and chainring (42t). I bought a Shimano un73 bb, SRAM chain, EAI 15t cog, Dura Ace lock ring, seat post, Forte in-line brake lever, and black gel bar wrap. I built the wheels using the IRO 32-hole hubs (fixed/free rear), DT Swiss spokes, Sun CR18 rims, and Performance kevlar road tires (28c). I had the cheesy pedals left over from my wife's road bike and I robbed the saddle and bottle holder from my (former) commuter.

    I decided to break it in last weekend on a metric century (Civil War Century in Frederick, MD). It rode really well, except that I kept having problems with the headset loosening up. Since the course was only moderately hilly, the 42/15 ratio was just about perfect. I felt like I was flying in the flats and downhill, and only one or two hills really tortured me. Had some cramping in my calves---not sure whether that was from not being used to riding a fixie for so long or from electrolyte imbalance. Otherwise, I was surprised at how well I (and the bike) held up. In commuting on the crappy Baltimore streets downtown over the past week on this bike, I quickly found I could feel every miniscule bump in the road---not used to that. My wrists and butt seemed to take a pounding, too.

    Overall, I'm pretty happy with it. It seems to be a fast, light little bike. I still worry over the headset, but it seems to be a little better since I last tightened it.
    A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.

  25. #25
    psn
    psn is offline
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    Wow - that looks great, especially considering what it looked like six months ago. You've convinced me that it's quite alright if I never buy new again (my last two have been used, albeit lightly). It's awesome to see a bike rehabbed like that.

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