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Bridgestone Mystery Road Bike

Old 11-04-15, 08:31 AM
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64Dunelt
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Bridgestone Mystery Road Bike

Recently found this, and I have tried very hard to identify year and model, and spent many hours online, doing image searches, text searches and reading through various forums, tracking down old catalogs, etc, and I have yet to nail down a year and model for this Bridgestone. THe components add up to about 1973 to me. I would say when new it would have fit somewhere in the middle of their lineup. There are no model decals and no evidence there were any, it definitely predates the Kabuki line, and I think that started in 1974 or 75. The drilled crank threw me, as their heyday seemed to be later, in the mid to late 80s. It turns out this crankset was made from 1971-76. This is an extraordinarily smooth and very nice riding ten speed. I have not even found ANY model Bridgestone with the small, subtle headtube decal. THis bike has early Shimano 600 barends, and also has SHimano hubs which, curiously, have an oil port and band like old Raleigh three speeds did. Anyone see anything similar or have one like it? Any ideas? I don't care about value estimates, I intend to keep it, it just has me very curious-
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Old 11-04-15, 09:02 AM
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Others more familiar may have better info, but I think it's a C. Itoh import frame. I think your dating may be correct. Any serial number info available?

The mix of components (Titlist rear changer, Dura-Ace front with LA bar-cons, etc.) suggests either a custom build, lots of replacements, or a later part-bin build that at least tried to be period-correct.

Your front hubs are first-generation Dura-Ace, one reason for the smooth ride. First-gen were not marked Dura-Ace but have "deep" anodizing and not just the polished finish of their lower line from that era.

I'm curious as to the brand of the brake levers as compared to the Gran-Compe center-pull calipers. Do they match?

This is a fascinating example of early Japanese import offerings, made just as they were beginning to chip away at Campagnolo's dominance of the high-end component market.

BTW Your bar-cons are not "Shimano 600" as they are two years earlier than "Shimano 600" - They are not engraved anything other than "Shimano" and "3.3.3" which was their pre-600 brand mark.

Most of your Shimano components should have a two-letter date code to help identify the year(s) of manufacture. I know the hubs and front changer will.

Last edited by exxongraftek; 11-04-15 at 09:09 AM. Reason: Further Accurization
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Old 11-04-15, 09:57 AM
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64Dunelt
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Thank you very much. The brake levers are Gran Compes & they are unique from others I have seen in that they have very large diameter barrel adjusters on top, which had black rubber boots on them, and the hoods accordingly had a much larger hole in the top than typical (probably never find a set of those to match). The frame serial number appears to be G62945 under the bottom bracket, the bar ends say Shimano Fingertip Control (great shifters, by the way & I have two bikes with good old Suntours and a set of the Dia Compes & these are as good as either). The hubs say Dura Ace on the bearing outer shell, or cover, or whatever it is called, but I could not find a date code. I also could not find a date code on the derailleur, where should I look? I am just very jazzed about this bike as it has been such a pleasant surprise, and arguably rides as well as a much beloved '72 Supercourse I have that I modified for comfortable everyday riding, probably better, once I get everything dialed in. Just a superb all-around bike!
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Old 11-04-15, 11:02 AM
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Beautiful bike Definitely a classic.
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Old 11-04-15, 04:35 PM
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+1

dating spot on.
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Old 11-04-15, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by 64Dunelt View Post
The brake levers are Gran Compes & they are unique from others I have seen in that they have very large diameter barrel adjusters on top...
IIRC, those adjusters are early-model.

Originally Posted by 64Dunelt View Post
...the bar ends say Shimano Fingertip Control
They shift so well due to a return spring allowing you to loosen the tension screws so you got "Light Action" when shifting.

Originally Posted by 64Dunelt View Post
The hubs say Dura Ace on the bearing outer shell, or cover, or whatever it is called, but I could not find a date code.
The date code is usually in the center of the hub barrel - if none, they are some of the very first made.
The QR also points to early Dura-Ace, as later identical hubs came with "Open/Close" engraving in order to comply with the CPSC bike safety rules (Campy had to do the same thing to theirs).

Originally Posted by 64Dunelt View Post
I also could not find a date code on the derailleur, where should I look?
Usually on the back plate (opposite side from the word "Titlist"). Titlist and Tourney were early equivalents to what became 105 and 600, can't recall which was which though. Past my bedtime.

Enjoy your cool bike!
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Old 11-05-15, 05:54 AM
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Thank you!
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