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Need info on Trek 520

Old 03-05-15, 05:34 PM
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XXLHardrock
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Need info on Trek 520

I've been wanting a road bike for a while and it seems that to get a tall frame I need to go vintage or spen some big bucks for new. So I'm seeing a 64cm Trek 520 on Craigslist.
700 wheels, 18 speed, side pull brakes. Shifters on the stem. Says good shape and wants $325. Paint looks good and original in the picture.


Am I correct in thinking this bike came new with 27" wheels? How much should I expect to upgrade to bring it up to modern standards? End use will be brevet riding- if I ever get my self in shape.

Your thoughts?

edit: it's a 520 cirrus.

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Old 03-05-15, 05:58 PM
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It may well have come with 700c wheels, methinks.
One of the best all-around frames ever built, especially if you get the cantilever models.
Can do anything: tour, cross, gravel hammer, centuries

If you get the brown model, you never have to worry about it being stolen.
For some reason, that color triggers some fairly negative reactions.
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Old 03-05-15, 06:03 PM
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XXLHardrock
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Thanks.

Further study shows shows the rear derailiour cable going through the chain stay.
Does this ID it somehow?
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Old 03-05-15, 06:12 PM
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The model year makes a big difference on the 520 model. I think they're are actually still making a model by that number, but it's very different from the vintage years. I'm guessing most of them from the mid 80's onward came with the 700c wheelset, so yours may have as well.

The first google image hit for "trek 520 cirrus" is a catalogue from 1987; which is tasty stuff; 531 tubing, Shimano Deore indexed shifting. I wouldn't modernize it at all if all the original gear was there and in good shape. (Though some would argue against BioPace chain rings)

You can probably find out the exact year by using the color scheme and serial number and comparing that info to what is posted on vintage-trek.com
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Old 03-05-15, 06:36 PM
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https://www.vintage-trek.com/images/trek/85TrekSport.pdf

1985 is the first year for internal cable routing to the RD. Spec for 1985 520 Cirrus shows 700c wheels, which is consistent with my 1986 Cirrus. However, shifters on a stock 520 Cirrus are on the downtube, not at the stem.


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Old 03-05-15, 06:42 PM
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The bike is clearly suitable for the OP's purposes and there is no need to "modernize" it to ride brevets or anything else you might want to do. It will need to be overhauled and you'll probably need to replace a number of parts so figure in another $100 or more in parts to get the bike up to a first rate riding condition plus labor.
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Old 03-05-15, 08:36 PM
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I called the guy. It's a 1986, much like the one in the picture above. He got it as a frame from a co-op and built it up. Nothing original, but that probably doesn't matter, does it? Would the frame accept modern hubs? Is it worth $325 given that it's pieced together? Seems the value is in the frame only. A new 64cm LHT or similar would be about 4 or 5 times that.
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Old 03-05-15, 09:39 PM
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moved from C&V to Appraisals.
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Old 03-05-15, 10:11 PM
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Depends on what its built up with and how well done.
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Old 03-05-15, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by XXLHardrock View Post
I called the guy. It's a 1986, much like the one in the picture above. He got it as a frame from a co-op and built it up. Nothing original, but that probably doesn't matter, does it? Would the frame accept modern hubs? Is it worth $325 given that it's pieced together? Seems the value is in the frame only. A new 64cm LHT or similar would be about 4 or 5 times that.
A new LHT would be 3 or 4 times the price but a used one or a CC might only be twice the price. Seems a bit high to me for a mixed together parts. I see those all the time for maybe a hundred less. For such a large frame you might find something good in the Frame doesn't fit thread. I may have a give away 520 in 25.5 email me at wooba.flores@gmail.com
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Old 03-06-15, 05:17 PM
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Thanks for all the help. He dropped the price to $250 overnight. But after I looked up the frame measurements, I concluded that the TT was going to be too short for this Clyde.
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Old 03-06-15, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by XXLHardrock View Post
Thanks for all the help. He dropped the price to $250 overnight. But after I looked up the frame measurements, I concluded that the TT was going to be too short for this Clyde.

How tall are you? What's your bicycle inseam?
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Old 03-06-15, 06:03 PM
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XXLHardrock
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Originally Posted by RoadGuy View Post
How tall are you? What's your bicycle inseam?
Im 6'4" but.....my cycling inseam is 39" and fingertip to fingertip I'm 6'7.5"
Bit of a knuckle dragger
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Old 03-06-15, 06:36 PM
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Bike frames that size are not off the shelf.

So, long legs and not much trunk. A tall bike with a short top tube.

Sounds like what you need is a custom built frame.
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Old 03-06-15, 07:08 PM
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XXLHardrock
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Well, not a really short top tube. My Hardrock is 655cm plus a setback seat post and a 90mm stem and I often ride with my thumbs hooker on the curved part of a Surly Open Bar. So about 750mm from center of the seat post to the hoods? Give or take. Edit: more like 810mm
KHS FLITE 747 looks like it would fit. just have to save my money and be patient. But it only takes 28mm tires.

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Old 03-17-15, 12:25 PM
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Surly makes most of their bikes up to 64 cm frames, if those would fit. The Pacer is a good road bike that still clears 32mm tires. The Cross Check clears a 40 mm tire so it is a good bike for mixed surfaces. They're both around $1300, so a bit cheaper than the KHS. See if any shops nearby have 64 cm's in stock?

Other options, more expensive:

Rivendell makes several of their models in XXL sizes, and even made one model (Redwood, natch) exclusively in 65 and 68 cm frames. They're very pricy but they come up for sale used occasionally, especially in the Pacific NW. They take wider tires.

Gunnar (made by Waterford) makes large bikes (up to 68 cm) for about $1k/frame. They do custom geometry on any model for about $300 more.

There are several other smaller, custom builders who can make you a custom steel frame in about the same price range.
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