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1974 Raleigh International restoration

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1974 Raleigh International restoration

Old 04-12-15, 08:27 AM
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kroozer
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1974 Raleigh International restoration

I bought this frame on BF from bluedevil63 last year for $186 shipped. It was a project frame, structurally fine but in need of some work. The chrome on the fork was bad but that would be easy to rechrome. The chrome on the main frame was fine, which was good because rechroming that would have been too a big hassle. The original silver finish was OK: the decals were in bad shape but a replacement set had been included. However, I’m not a big fan of silver and since I’d have to repaint the fork anyway, I decided to repaint the rest of the frame at the same time and get a color I liked. International’s apparently have a reputation for spotty workmanship, and this particular example ranges from decent to embarrassing. One of the windows on the fork crown was completely filled in with brazing material, the brazing on the chainstay brace and brake bridge is painful to behold, and there is a big gap in the rear of the seat lug. It’s easily the sloppiest-built frame I own. But it’s held up fine for 40 years, and International’s always manage to look good in spite of their issues.


I first had the fork replated at my local shop. The crown is still rather rough due to the prior pitting, but they got a smooth finish on the outside of the blades. As for the main frame I sanded down the rough patches of paint, often taking it down to the bare metal, then masked the head badge and all the chrome areas with masking tape. I had wanted a metallic emerald green color but they didn’t have it at the paint store, so I decided to go with copper and do a more-or-less stock restoration. l took it to my neighbor Oscar’s auto-body shop, and he did the actual spray-painting since he has the equipment and is very experienced. If I do all the prep work and get the paint then it’s a simple and quick matter for him—about an hour and a half for everything if it’s a single color. The primer consisted of zinc chromate (to stick to the chrome), and gray (to adjust the color). The main color was a gold base with a translucent copper-tinted coat over it, sort of an “orovelato”. Finally a clear coat to seal everything. I’m not sure how close I got to the original color, but it looks quite sharp. The refinishing cost me about $50 altogether: $10 for rechroming, $30 for paint, and a 6-pack of good beer for Oscar.






I’ll post some more photos when I get her built up.

Last edited by kroozer; 04-12-15 at 09:09 AM.
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Old 04-12-15, 08:32 AM
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Sure is pretty. Too bad the forks bent.
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Old 04-12-15, 08:44 AM
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Beautiful job, mine is distinctly shabby in comparison.

A full-on restoration or something else in mind?

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Old 04-12-15, 08:46 AM
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Gonna be a Frankenbike.
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Old 04-12-15, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by kroozer View Post
Gonna be a Frankenbike.
Good plan, I won't tell the Period Correct Police.

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Old 04-12-15, 09:37 AM
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Beautiful... good job.
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Old 04-12-15, 09:41 AM
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Looks as good as what oldsteelmachine was hawking on eBay for $1,200.

The color is very attractive on my monitor, not 100% accurate, but I think this is a case where the concept meets or exceeds the original.

You might have to chase the bottom bracket threads though.
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Old 04-12-15, 10:59 AM
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The International's I'm looking at on the web seem to be a bit more orange and not quite as metallic, so no it didn't turn out 100% authentic. But I like it very much, and it's not going to be built up stock anyway. The 2-part paint with a translucent tint over a metallic base looks really nice, and I'd like to try it on another frame sometime. But touch-up is going to be difficult.
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Old 04-12-15, 12:09 PM
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10 bucks for the rechrome? Holy smokes! Looks quite amazing.
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Old 04-12-15, 12:18 PM
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That looks nice, hopefully it holds up well. For touch up paint try Golden Acrylics iridescent copper. It should be close, or you could always blend it with another acrylic.

It holds up pretty well. I put some on a frame for experimentation and road it quite a bit without flaking off. They have a hardening medium you could get to make it more robust. Even though it's artists paint it will work great for touch ups.
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Old 04-12-15, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by kroozer View Post
...... The primer consisted of zinc chromate (to stick to the chrome), and gray (to adjust the color). The main color was a gold base with a translucent copper-tinted coat over it, sort of an “orovelato”. Finally a clear coat to seal everything. I’m not sure how close I got to the original color, but it looks quite sharp. The refinishing cost me about $50 altogether: $10 for rechroming, $30 for paint, and a 6-pack of good beer for Oscar.


....
Your neighbor Oscar did a fantastic job, Kroozer - and for just $50 total!
(To look at it, I would have guessed you'd be shoveling his snow and cutting his lawn from now on).
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