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Old 05-31-17, 08:14 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Greater Seattle Area
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Bikes: 1971 Motobecane Grand Touring, 1975 John Deere Men's Racer

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Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
Replace the spoke and tension it up. Good enough is good enough, and 70s 36-spoke 27 x 1 1/4 wheels are surprisingly forgiving and adaptable. This is not now nor was it ever a high performance bike, but repaired and fitted with useable tires it would make a great casual, beater, errand kind of bike.

In the mid-70s when I was a wee tad, we would sneer at these bikes in our adolescent poseur faux-cognoscenti way (I know, French AND Italian in the same comment, but eh, who cares?). The shifters, in particular, are very pretend-muscle-car shifters of the sort we would expect to see on a Sears kid's bike with ape hanger bars and a banana seat and the big flat slick rear tire. But I am sure these will work forever, so there.

If you do choose to repair the wheel and get better tires, I would suggest running no more than 70 psi. Those rims probably pre-date the hook bead seats of modern rims, and more than 70 psi frequently will lead to blowouts. For that matter, you will want wire bead tires. Find some Kendas on sale cheap, and maybe even consider going with 27 x 1 3/8 like these and make it a comfy around-town bike suitable for fun or casual rides.
I will second the notion of 1 3/8 tires @ 75 PSI for a forgiving ride. It's the only thing that make my gas-pipe special tolerable over rough pavement.

Just to clarify your statement of "no more than 70 PSI on non-hooked rims". A better statement might be "no more than 70's PSI on non-wire bead tires". You can (and I have for a lot of miles) run much higher pressures on straight-walled rims. The wire beaded tires are key. Basically, just don't run non-wire beaded tires on straight-walled rims and you'll be fine -- you just need to make sure everything seats properly as you inflate. Cheap Kenda tires can be a pain to seat. Panaracer Paselas are a dream. This statement of "general wizdom" is out there and it's just not accurate and can lead to confusion for folks just getting into this. Sorry, this is a bit of a pet peeve of mine.
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