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Old 10-08-07, 11:49 AM
  #125  
brandenjs
WV is not flat..
 
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Charles Town,Wv.
Posts: 1,354

Bikes: 1 away from divorce!

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Originally Posted by Al Criner View Post
I've been riding my Gran Tour - the rear wheel is probably un-truable but generally the bike rides pretty nice. On the bathroom scale it weighs about 28 lbs. but that is with Panaracer 700c-32 tires and Mr. Tuffy strips, the original chrome steel handlebars, reflectors and suicide brake levers. Remove some stuff and upgrade components and I can get the weight down in the 23-25 lb. range, I am sure.

I found the original receipt ($199.95) and very generic owner's manual. The headbadge on the bike says Allentown, PA but the manual has the company address in Rockaway Beach, NY. That all makes sense given the background that Andy Ross describes in his post.

The bike is good - 4130 CrMo tubing, friction shifters on the stem (those are museum relics now but the shifting is quick and smooth), and I am having some fun learning some basic maintenance and mechanics. The bike has 52-40 chain rings and 5-sprocket 14-28 freewheel, but the rear fork spacing is 126mm. That means I could fit a 7-speed freewheel for a quick upgrade. I have even toyed with the idea of spreading the frame to go up to 8 or 9 speeds, maybe putting on triple chain rings to climb these hills in northern California. I don't see a fancy new bike in my future so I expect I will end up with a bit of a Ross frankenbike eventually.

One of my kids outgrew the 20" bikes and is having fun riding the Walmart cheapie "mountain" bike I have ridden the last few years so we are riding together.

Keep riding those Ross bikes, folks. If you want more status, put Peugot or Bridgestone decals on it, most folks will never know the difference!
Al, it sounds like our bikes are almost identical. I've got some pictures on my Photobucket site if you want to take a look and see how similar they are. I had a mishap that was the fault of my "relic" friction shifters on a metric century ride a couple of weeks ago. The shifter for the rear loosened up and banged down through the gears on a pretty steep climb. Needless to say I could'nt get unclipped fast enough and ended up falling over. Nothing hurt but my pride thankfully. I will be looking at switching to an indexed system if it's possible. I too am on the low budget cycling plan but I can see moving up the ladder of quality bikes in the future. In the meantime I really love this bike and it will be with me for awhile...Jeff
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