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Austro-Daimler SL...what's it worth?!

Old 09-13-11, 12:31 AM
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uurc
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Austro-Daimler SL...what's it worth?!

Hello bikeforums! This is my first post, and I am trying to find out more about a bike I am considering purchasing. You can see the bike in question here:

https://chicago.craigslist.org/chc/bik/2581385596.html

I've done a little research on AD, but am a relative newbie when it comes to road bikes, and even more so regarding vintage bikes. I had been using my old Trek 820 MTB for commuting and going on longer distance rides (50-60 miles)...but that bike was stolen, so I've decided it's time to move up to a roadie.

The seller has offered the A-D SL to me for $300...is this a decent price for this ride? From the photos it looks to be in good shape. I would appreciate any advice or info you could offer. Thanks!
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Old 09-13-11, 06:01 AM
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Many sellers advertise "pristine". This one might actually be correct. It looks in amazing condition.

That being said, the price seems to be aimed at collectors. I don't know the Chicago market, but personally, I think even $300 is a bit high for an average frame with above average components. If the bike looks as good in person as in the pictures, and you like the idea of a vintage european bike in almost showroom condition, then maybe thats worth a premium.

When you do view the bike, check the head tube and fork alignment. In the one picture, the fork looks a little bent. Might be just the camera angle though.
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Old 09-13-11, 07:47 AM
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The early A-D SL's were Reynolds 531 main tubes, I suspect this one is as well. It looks to be in beautiful condition and what catches my eye is the fork crown, wow, that looks nice.

If it fits you and there's no damage to the front end, the $300 is not far off. A-D's are very finely crafted frames, at all model levels.

Scott
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Old 09-13-11, 07:58 AM
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If it was a truly good quality frame, I'd personally expect to see a derailleur hanger and forged dropouts. No way I'm paying $300 for a bike that doesn't at least meet that quality level.
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Old 09-13-11, 08:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Scottryder View Post
The early A-D SL's were Reynolds 531 main tubes, I suspect this one is as well. It looks to be in beautiful condition and what catches my eye is the fork crown, wow, that looks nice.

If it fits you and there's no damage to the front end, the $300 is not far off. A-D's are very finely crafted frames, at all model levels.

Scott
AD was pretty anal about displaying the Reynolds tags. More likely this somewhere around 75, when the model used normal steel.
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Old 09-13-11, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Beach Comber View Post
AD was pretty anal about displaying the Reynolds tags. More likely this somewhere around 75, when the model used normal steel.

Beach Comber, I wasn't sure of the age .. the '76 SL had cable housing clips so I figured this was a bit later. The pump peg is new to me too, the lug work on the head tube also. Do you have some catalog sources for pre-1976? Love to see some scans if you do.

Scott
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Old 09-13-11, 08:42 AM
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looks like it has a straight block. you'll probably want a larger freewheel if you're going to be riding any hills. then you'll need a new chain too. Add that to the price.
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Old 09-13-11, 08:49 AM
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WOW is someone here selling this? it looks great but I think $375 may be a bit optimistic for this time of year.

there was just a bigish thread on as A-D SL and the identity and value

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Old 09-13-11, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
WOW is someone here selling this? it looks great but I think $375 may be a bit optimistic for this time of year.

there was just a bigish thread on as A-D SL and the identity and value]
OP said he could get it for $300, which softens it a bit.
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Old 09-13-11, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Scottryder View Post
Beach Comber, I wasn't sure of the age .. the '76 SL had cable housing clips so I figured this was a bit later. The pump peg is new to me too, the lug work on the head tube also. Do you have some catalog sources for pre-1976? Love to see some scans if you do.

Scott
No, I have no scans or catalogues for the early 70s.
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Old 09-13-11, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Beach Comber View Post
AD was pretty anal about displaying the Reynolds tags. More likely this somewhere around 75, when the model used normal steel.
First of all, thanks everyone for all the comments and info! Regarding the frame, this may be a newb question, but in the absence of tags, is there any way to tell if it is Reynolds 531 or a lower quality steel?

Also, I've been trying to date this bike with bits and pieces of info online, and it has been difficult to say the least....any idea on a model year?
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Old 09-13-11, 12:33 PM
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Ways to tell:
Seat post size (diameter)
Weight of frame
Marking on steering tube (have to remove the fork to see it)

Absent of any of that info, I discount it as not being anything special tubing wise, and reduce my offer accordingly. Looks very nice, should get close to that money in a town like Chicago despite the absence of any markings.
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Old 09-13-11, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by uurc View Post
First of all, thanks everyone for all the comments and info! Regarding the frame, this may be a newb question, but in the absence of tags, is there any way to tell if it is Reynolds 531 or a lower quality steel?

Also, I've been trying to date this bike with bits and pieces of info online, and it has been difficult to say the least....any idea on a model year?

uurc, the serial number would be a huge help ... I know it's not in your hands so that might be hard to get. I'm not put off by the lack of a Reynolds sticker, I own two that don't. My '76 Ultima Superleicht and my later '70's SL mixte. The mixte has the same lack of derailleur hanger and forged dropouts but it's 531. I just don't get hung up on that too much. My Raleigh Super Course doesn't have a derailleur hanger either, but that doesn't seem to bother many people.

If you were to walk into a bike store to replace your Trek tomorrow and slap down $300, I guarantee you won't get anywhere near the quality of this A-D.

Just my thoughts. I still love that fork crown, whatever it is.

Scott
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Old 09-13-11, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Scottryder View Post
uurc, the serial number would be a huge help ... I know it's not in your hands so that might be hard to get. I'm not put off by the lack of a Reynolds sticker, I own two that don't. My '76 Ultima Superleicht and my later '70's SL mixte. The mixte has the same lack of derailleur hanger and forged dropouts but it's 531. I just don't get hung up on that too much. My Raleigh Super Course doesn't have a derailleur hanger either, but that doesn't seem to bother many people.

If you were to walk into a bike store to replace your Trek tomorrow and slap down $300, I guarantee you won't get anywhere near the quality of this A-D.

Just my thoughts. I still love that fork crown, whatever it is.

Scott
Scott, thanks for the info (and for the reassurance that this may actually be a pretty decent frame). Unfortunately I don't have the serial number...but I did just speak with the owner. He claimed that the bike is from the late 80s and the frame is chromoly. Based on my limited research of AD, I found this surprising, as I was under the impression that they were mostly making bikes in the 70s and early 80s. He's not the original owner though, so he could be mistaken.

Is his late 80s/chromoly assessment a possibility?
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Old 09-13-11, 09:41 PM
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No way that bike is late 80s. Early 80s +/-.

Lacks bottle bosses, which pushes it back further, late 1970s/early 1980s. Nice bike regardless.
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Old 09-13-11, 09:52 PM
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I hate hate hate hate to be "that guy" but I think that the fork is a wee bit pushed back.

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Old 09-14-11, 06:25 AM
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Originally Posted by wrk101 View Post
No way that bike is late 80s. Early 80s +/-.

Lacks bottle bosses, which pushes it back further, late 1970s/early 1980s. Nice bike regardless.
I agree, the Shimano components are mid '70's, nutted brakes and that pump peg. I wonder what hubs those are?

Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
I hate hate hate hate to be "that guy" but I think that the fork is a wee bit pushed back.
I'm hoping you're wrong but they do have a bit of a visual bend in the photo.

Scott
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Old 01-23-21, 04:03 AM
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I am about to get a similar bike for 30 bucks!
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Old 01-23-21, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Qtipword View Post
I am about to get a similar bike for 30 bucks!
I like my ADs.
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Old 01-23-21, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Wildwood View Post
I like my ADs.
I dont know what you mean....I'm new so I cant post a picture but I'm psyched after reading all the good things people have to say about these bikes....I just had another bike stolen so hopefully this deal works out.
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Old 01-23-21, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Qtipword View Post
I dont know what you mean....

Olympian, Vent Noir & Michelle (not pictured with revised townie conversion)
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Old 04-06-22, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by ScottRyder View Post
uurc, the serial number would be a huge help ... I know it's not in your hands so that might be hard to get. I'm not put off by the lack of a Reynolds sticker, I own two that don't. My '76 Ultima Superleicht and my later '70's SL mixte. The mixte has the same lack of derailleur hanger and forged dropouts but it's 531. I just don't get hung up on that too much. My Raleigh Super Course doesn't have a derailleur hanger either, but that doesn't seem to bother many people.

If you were to walk into a bike store to replace your Trek tomorrow and slap down $300, I guarantee you won't get anywhere near the quality of this A-D.

Just my thoughts. I still love that fork crown, whatever it is.

Scott
Check for the serial # on the tube knuckle (bottom), almost directly beneath the crank axle.
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Old 04-06-22, 11:51 AM
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No idea the WORTH but....

Originally Posted by uurc View Post
Scott, thanks for the info (and for the reassurance that this may actually be a pretty decent frame). Unfortunately I don't have the serial number...but I did just speak with the owner. He claimed that the bike is from the late 80s and the frame is chromoly. Based on my limited research of AD, I found this surprising, as I was under the impression that they were mostly making bikes in the 70s and early 80s. He's not the original owner though, so he could be mistaken.

Is his late 80s/chromoly assessment a possibility?
Check the bottom frame tubing knuckle almost DIRECTLY beneath the crank axle. That's where MY A-D S-L Serial is located. REYNOLDS 531 frame.
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Old 04-14-22, 04:59 PM
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I always lusted for a Vent Noire AD in the "smoke chrome" Chromavelato finsh, but never had the luck finding a good one. Unfortunately, the finish and decals on them are usually beat up. Pretty much a given on many AD's just like with Pinarello and their decals. The component groups on most ADs are surprisingly, usually by Shimano. I always thought that such a Euro sounding brand should usually have Euro components for a more consistent picture......
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Old 04-14-22, 06:43 PM
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Originally Posted by uurc View Post
Scott, thanks for the info (and for the reassurance that this may actually be a pretty decent frame). Unfortunately I don't have the serial number...but I did just speak with the owner. He claimed that the bike is from the late 80s and the frame is chromoly. Based on my limited research of AD, I found this surprising, as I was under the impression that they were mostly making bikes in the 70s and early 80s. He's not the original owner though, so he could be mistaken.

Is his late 80s/chromoly assessment a possibility?
Based on components it's late 70;s 76-79 AD started using Suntour nicer Japanese components around 75/76 and stopped using the center pull b brakes 80 or so. As for value with the nice wheel set tires I would say it's ok but not great.
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