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1985 Bridgestone 500

Old 10-30-19, 12:43 PM
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pureskillz
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1985 Bridgestone 500

I found a 1985 Bridgestone 500 on cg. The guy was offering $220, but we eventually agreed to $150. The bike has all its original parts and the paint job is pretty good. Is $150 worth it? Or am I paying too much?
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Old 10-30-19, 03:36 PM
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Welcome to the forum pureskillz. You did good.
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Old 10-30-19, 03:37 PM
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You scored a nice bike, pureskillz. I am a fan of Bridgestone bicycles. And a 1983 Spica owner.
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Old 10-30-19, 04:36 PM
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Thanks guys! I just picked up the bike. Looks to be in pretty good condition, excited to ride it
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Old 10-30-19, 05:22 PM
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Sounds like a good deal. I paid $100 for my all-original '85 Bridgestone 400 but it needed a complete overhaul. Fortunately the paint was in really good shape so it cleaned up great. Before and after pics to get you dreaming of your new Bridgestone.


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Old 10-30-19, 05:25 PM
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Oh wow that new bike looks amazing! Can I ask what parts you switched out on it? I want to start upgrading the bike little by little.

I'll send pictures of my bike soon!
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Old 10-30-19, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by pureskillz View Post
Oh wow that new bike looks amazing! Can I ask what parts you switched out on it? I want to start upgrading the bike little by little.

I'll send pictures of my bike soon!
I had Cyclone derailleurs laying around so I put those on (probably same as your 500) to make it a touch racier than the original ARX bits on the 400. I ride 175mm cranks so I switched out the mega-cool Sakae CRs for a Superbe set I had. Brakes are the original Dia Compes (same as the 500 I think) which have a long enough reach to use 700c rims instead of the original 27'' rims. I have plenty of vintage racers so I currently have the Bridgestone torn down and am building it as sort of a vintage gravel bike. I'll stick with 700c rims to use wider rubber and am going back to the original ARX derailleurs and a Sugino triple crankset.

If you're not familiar with it, you'll definitely want to checkout the 1985 Bridgestone catalog online.

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/bridges...5/index.html#8

Looking forward to seeing your pics.
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Old 10-31-19, 10:07 PM
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Here it is!




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Old 10-31-19, 10:09 PM
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And now it is currently in this state
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Old 11-01-19, 05:14 AM
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That’s going to be a sweet machine. Interesting how the catalog bills the 500 as a triathlete’s ride. Wonder what makes it different.
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Old 11-02-19, 07:57 AM
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You did well! That silver colorway is great. Keep us posted!!
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Old 11-02-19, 08:13 AM
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Well done! You scored a quality bike for a fair price and all parts look to be original and in great condition. Tires, tubes, cables/housing, an overhaul of all bearings, and you're ready to ride!
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Old 11-02-19, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by plonz View Post
Thatís going to be a sweet machine. Interesting how the catalog bills the 500 as a triathleteís ride. Wonder what makes it different.
It can' be ridden in a straight line...
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Old 11-02-19, 08:07 PM
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Polish the frame before you put it all back together, Be good. Have fun.
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Old 11-03-19, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by ramzilla View Post
Polish the frame before you put it all back together, Be good. Have fun.
Would you recommending polishing the actual frame or just the aluminum parts of the bike like the stem, seat post, etc? I've been trying to look at some posts about it and heard mothers was a good polish. Never polished a bike before though
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Old 11-04-19, 10:52 AM
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Everybody has their own methods of "polishing", but the main thing is to go slowly and be careful. Too aggressive and you will damage paint and/or decals. I always begin with a good bath with dish soap, Dawn works great. Some use WD-40 to wipe the frame down and swear by it. You can use various products to enhance the condition of the paint. Meguiars (not sure of spelling) has a nice selection of paint restoration products. The idea is to "refresh" the paint without removing too much or scratching it.

The aluminum bits can be cleaned and polished in a variety of ways. I've had good success with 000 steel wool. There are also products that you just wipe on and it brightens aluminum that has dulled. A local auto supply store is a great resource.

And if you will be keeping the bike, get some Frame Saver and treat the inside.
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Old 11-05-19, 09:41 PM
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My step 1 is to wash the bike with a soft sponge with soap and water. After it dries, step 2 is car wax. I like plain old cheap Turtlewax in the green tin. (You can pay more for polish but, Turtlewax products work as well as anything else IMO). I put on some latex gloves and rub it all over the frame. Let it dry and buff it out. Use a soft tooth brush and Qtips to get the crevices. That's it. That's all. Done deal.
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Old 11-19-19, 11:51 PM
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After cleaning it all up, polishing and waxing, changing all the bearings, new cables and housing, and toe straps, this is what it looks like now! The friction shifters has some getting used to (miss index shifters), but they're getting easier to use the more I ride with them.





Surprisingly it has its original tires and they look to be in pretty decent condition and still have a lot of tread in them. Though I bought some new tires and tubes in case they go bad quickly.... Let me know if you guys think I should change them out now


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Old 11-20-19, 07:22 AM
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The tires look like they are dry rotting to me so I would change them. I would not replace the tubes. I used to replace old tires and tubes until I wised up and realized that old tubes are usually fine.
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Old 11-21-19, 08:47 PM
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I don't trust any tires over 20 years old. Considering how easy it is to get rolling over 30mph on a downhill, the price of a set of new tubes & tires is cheap insurance against a nasty spill.
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Old 11-21-19, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by ramzilla View Post
I don't trust any tires over 20 years old. Considering how easy it is to get rolling over 30mph on a downhill, the price of a set of new tubes & tires is cheap insurance against a nasty spill.
I'm curious to know if anyone has actually gotten into an accident because of an old tire. I've been reading a lot of people who are wary about it, but not a lot of people who have actually gotten into an accident because of it.

Sheldon Brown said that he's okay with old tires. This is what he wrote: "Many cyclists waste money replacing perfectly functional tires simply because they're old, or may have discolored sidewalls. If you just want new tires because the old ones look grotty, it's your money, but if you are mainly concerned with safety/function, there are only two reasons for replacing old tires:
  1. When the tread is worn so thin that you start getting a lot of flats from small pieces of glass and the like, or the fabric shows through the rubber.
  2. When the tire's fabric has been damaged, so that the tire has a lumpy, irregular appearance somewhere, or the tube bulges through the tire."
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Old 11-21-19, 09:04 PM
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I was riding a 1988 Centurion LeMans back in 2016. It was a beautiful indoor stored bike & still had the original tires. I think they were 700x23 Vittorias or something. 28 years old. I was really glad that I was riding uphill when the tread on the back tire unzipped & the tube popped out and instantly exploded. I was about 1/3 of the way up the hill and had no more momentum. So, only going somewhere between 5 to 10mph.
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Old 11-21-19, 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted by ramzilla View Post
I was riding a 1988 Centurion LeMans back in 2016. It was a beautiful indoor stored bike & still had the original tires. I think they were 700x23 Vittorias or something. 28 years old. I was really glad that I was riding uphill when the tread on the back tire unzipped & the tube popped out and instantly exploded. I was about 1/3 of the way up the hill and had no more momentum. So, only going somewhere between 5 to 10mph.
I'm convinced. I will be changing my tires tonight
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Old 11-21-19, 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted by ramzilla View Post
I don't trust any tires over 20 years old. Considering how easy it is to get rolling over 30mph on a downhill, the price of a set of new tubes & tires is cheap insurance against a nasty spill.
I have to agree here. Iíve had tires and rims come apart through the years. Each time I think thank goodness I wasnít bombing a downhill at 30+. Now that Iím in the hilly NE, 40mph is a common occurrence and I worry about squirrels and flats. I canít control the varmints but I donít hesitate to spend the dough on new rubber.

Cheap money compared to the consequences.
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