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Kuwahara Cutlass

Old 09-05-10, 07:03 PM
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yizhimao
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Kuwahara Cutlass

I found a vintage Kuwahara bicycle behind my campus police station that is set to be auctioned off this month. I'm looking to do a cheap fixie conversion for bike polo as well as getting around. This is my first foray into the world of bike restoration so I'm a little green and I wanted some help identifying this bike and determining whether or not it's worth fixing up. Based on info from the internet I believe it's a late 70s to early 80s bike. It still has the head badge as well as what I believe are it's original pedals. The back wheel is bent but the front is in passable condition. Here are some photos:

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.ca/lh/photo/...eat=directlink

I apologize for the terrible photo quality. I was trying to document it in a darkened parking complex while it was still chained up. Thank you for any info you can provide.
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Old 09-05-10, 07:15 PM
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wrk101
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Basic bike in rough shape. Are you a mechanic, with ready access to tools, parts, etc.? I would pass. It will likely cost more than it is worth to rehab it. Bikes in that condition are best suited for people that have the time/skill/parts/space and interest in rehabbing it. Otherwise, it will be a money pit.
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Old 09-05-10, 07:22 PM
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And it looks like you'd need to be quite a bit over 6' tall to fit on that bike.
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Old 09-05-10, 07:54 PM
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I agree very tall and quite a fixer upper. it does have a triple and cool shifters going for it

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Old 09-05-10, 07:55 PM
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I'm 6'3" so it's actually a little on the small side. The top bar is about an inch or less below my crotch.

As for the tools and such. I have access to a fair number of tools through my friend and a local bike group. In addition I'm not planning on doing to much work initially. I was thinking I would replace the back tire, sand and repaint the rust, get a new chain and rewrap the handlebars. In the future I might go further. My goal is to keep it under $150-200.
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Old 09-05-10, 09:31 PM
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Bike is going to need a lot more work than that to be ride ready.
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Old 09-05-10, 09:46 PM
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What's the bare minimum you would suggest I do to make it ridable?
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Old 09-05-10, 09:58 PM
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The drillium triple is pretty hot!

Normally I don't fret over top tube clearance all that much, but for bike polo, I'd think that sudden straddling of the top tube would be more likely than it is for other riding styles. I'd be kinda scared with an inch or less clearance.

Anyways, you'll need:

rear wheel
chain
crankset (or remove big ring and middle ring, replace big with bash guard and middle with single speed chainring, it would be sad to see those chainrings separated from the cranks, though.)
I'd swap out the bars, too. drops don't seem too polo-friendly. May need to replace stem at same time or use shim, depending on the bars you get.
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Old 09-05-10, 10:08 PM
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I had heard that you can flip the drops and cut them so they create sort of a modded bull-horn look. I was considering doing that. Depending on how I feel about the drops once I try it out.

But in general, I think I feel comfortable with replacing those parts. Assuming I can find the tools needed to replace them. Thanks for the help.

Also, I agree with you on the danger of playing polo with such a high bar. I'll keep that in mind.
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