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Which old Mntn bike to keep?

Old 05-25-20, 01:30 PM
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Ed333
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Which old Mntn bike to keep?

A- which one to keep, and which to sell?
B- what would selling price ranges be for each?

I just turned 80, am doing the Swedish Cleaning, have two bikes and have decided I only need one, the use of which would be around the village riding, on road.

Bike A- 1984 Trek 850, 24 " frame, original BullMoose bars on it, with bar extension. Thinking of swapping out stem and bars for a more upright riding position, and maybe swap out original Bear claw pedals. Shimano friction shifters, 15 speed, very low low gear, long chainstays (my size 14s did not hit the rear bags when I had them on), relatively short top tube, fairly upright front end, relatively low bottom bracket, Reynolds 531 lugged frame, comfortable like a touring bike, in good shape. Black with red accents, Avocet woman's touring saddle. Bontrager street tires.
Bike B- '90s Wicked Fat Chance, black with fluorescent green fork, welded frame, a lot lighter than the Trek, Shimano Deore XT SIS click shifters, 21 speed, excellent condition, low miles, no charging up or down mountains, slicks, swapped in a more upright stem and more swept bars, still have original Salsa stem and bars. Frame is ~17.5 as I recall. All original except as noted, in excellent condition.

Haven't done much riding in recent years, want to get back to it as less strain on joints compared to walking, want to maintain some level of fitness while dealing with underlying conditions and having some fun.

Old school, I know, and never was too serious about it....Advice is welcome. Thanks, Ed
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Old 05-25-20, 01:52 PM
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Both excellent bikes. I'd pick the one that fits, one is 17.5 and the other a 24.

Or is the sizing on one a typo? If the size is similar, I'd keep the Fat Chance even though I really like both bikes.

We can't give you a guestimate of the price without pictures especially of the drive side.
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Old 05-25-20, 03:58 PM
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If it was me, the Chance !
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Old 05-25-20, 07:41 PM
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Fat Chance.
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Old 05-25-20, 09:09 PM
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Chance.

While the early Trek 850s tend to fetch more than later models, nowhere near the same category as the Chance.

Chris Chance took Fat City when it was sold, and along with four others, started Independent Fabrication. IF makes incredible bikes; I have three of them. They're up with the very best.
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Old 05-26-20, 02:29 PM
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Both until you ride them both for a while.
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Old 05-26-20, 07:18 PM
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One rule of thumb I use on possible disposal of a keeper: "How easy will it be to find another one if I regret it?" Using that guide, I'd be keeping the Fat Chance. But really, the one that fits BEST always trumps my rule of thumb.

The early Trek 850 is much nicer than later 850s. They can be a bargain out there, as most people don't realize it. Still, I let my 1984 850 go and kept the 1983 Univega Alpina Ultima. MTBs that have left (that were my size), 1984 850, 1987 Univega Alpina Pro, 1987 Schwinn High Sierra, 1992 Trek 950, 1984 Stumpjumper. I kept the 1988 Schwinn Cimarron and the Alpina Ultima.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:49 AM
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relative sizes

Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
Both excellent bikes. I'd pick the one that fits, one is 17.5 and the other a 24.

Or is the sizing on one a typo? If the size is similar, I'd keep the Fat Chance even though I really like both bikes.

We can't give you a guestimate of the price without pictures especially of the drive side.
I think I was recalling my wifes' bike as to 17.5; but frankly I have forgotten how to measure frame size. Standover height, from ground to top of top tube, is a tad over 34" for the Trek, and 32" for the Fat Chance. I am 6'3", about 250 lbs. these days, with a trouser inseam of 32". When I come to a stop I usually lean the bike over to one side, put one foot down, and stay on the saddle, whether I am on the Trek or the Chance, more necessary on the Trek. I don't think the Trek would have been a good choice for single track /bumpy /at speed /off road riding, but that is not what I was doing when I bought it, it was more for a feeling of security in heading into a soft shoulder with the 2.125" tires if an auto was threatening, and for exploring back-country dirt and gravel roads. But the Trek reminded me of an old Univega touring bike i had for a while, nice comfortable frame, just enough flex. The Fat Chance is much more nimble, a different type of ride, but even after installing a higher stem and slightly swept (not flat) bars, it is still a bit of a torso stretch for me, which at 80, with +35 pounds added around my middle, is not always the most comfortable position.
How does one measure frame size?
I will clean both up and take some pictures.
Thanks for the responses to date. My sense is that the '84 Trek could appeal to some folks in the classic and vintage camp if the price was right, and that the Chance may be more of a collectors item. As I may have said, I think the Trek could make a great bullet-proof touring bike, not much for speed, but could carry some weight, and the gearing could handle the hills.

Last edited by Ed333; 05-29-20 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 05-29-20, 11:19 AM
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Digger Goreman
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If you want to be a bit capitalistic about it, which one would fetch best price, or be easiest to sell quickly?

Sounds like you enjoy the Trek best.
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Old 05-31-20, 08:23 PM
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Measure from the center of the crank to the top of the seat tube to get a rough idea on frame size.
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Old 04-27-21, 07:10 AM
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Do you still have that Trek 850?
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Old 05-02-21, 08:07 PM
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Ed333
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still have 850

Originally Posted by brightsideofit View Post
Do you still have that Trek 850?
Yes, I still have the 850, I decided to sell the Fat Chance, it went to a good home and is getting good use. I got the 850 tuned up, swapped in a new bar, the bike shop said they were unable to replace the stem, the diameter on the old Trek stem is an obsolete size, but they did extend the stem up as far as they could, which helped with the riding position, and i have adjusted the seat a tad lower than it used to be. It is in great shape for its age, and that 531 chromoly frame is very comfortable, not as soft riding as an old Univega touring bike I once had, but good enough.
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Old 05-02-21, 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
Both excellent bikes. I'd pick the one that fits, one is 17.5 and the other a 24.

Or is the sizing on one a typo? If the size is similar, I'd keep the Fat Chance even though I really like both bikes.

We can't give you a guestimate of the price without pictures especially of the drive side.
I would not mind coming across one of those......
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