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What have you been wrenching on lately?

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What have you been wrenching on lately?

Old 08-08-23, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Mad Honk
These came into the shop in need of some serious repair and parts replacement. I found most of the parts in the stash of Campy small parts I have here but when looking for some bits the parts costs are sky high. To build the levers from parts up would be over $200. I guess C&V is a rather small part of the universe, but it seems to be getting smaller.

Levers were missing some of the nylon washers for pivots, band clamp has the wrong nut assembly and needs one band, and the set screws for the pivots were missing.
I am going to rob a lever here to fix the set, but the small parts are hard to find. Smiles, MH
MH, if you think Mafac band / clamp would work, let me know. I have two and they also use hex nut tightening design. Might require some tinkering in case they were longer than Campy's and won't be genuine Campagnolo, but I think they could be a viable solution at least until you find Campy bits. As for the lever pivot bolt, it looks very similar to Suntour Superbe with being narrower in the middle. I guess that's for a grub screw of some sort? That could be sourced from some iron monger, furniture seller etc. and I don't know the diameter, but newer Shimano derailleurs use something similar to hold the RD shell on the cage bolt. Also, I was working on Campy hub recently which uses something like that on the DS locknut and I know there are more hubs that use similar system.
As for the nylon washers, this might sound pretty random, but how about sourcing them from some old caliper brakes? Would require some experimentation (need to dig out the spare pair of Superbe levers tomorrow as a test bench), but for example Weinmann centre pulls use nylon washers in suitable shape for the pivot bolts. Some single pivot brakes use nylon washers like that between the arms. And then also, I remember I was getting something similar from fleabay for using hex nut brake calipers on recessed Allen nut frame. I'll need to dig a bit and see if I still have them.
Mafac clamps:


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Old 08-08-23, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by SoCaled
Slowing getting to the Moulton, that has not been getting the love it deserves. Stripping off the straight bar and thumb shifters, old cycle computer. Started to do the same with the old brake cables, ran into something I don't quite get? These Modolo brakes, When I go to loosen the nut to release the cable, everything pivots. I am sure I can get this nut loose but is there a way I am supposed to do it?


My guess is there is an allen key slot underneath the black rubber grommet. You can probably pull the grommet out with a needle or pick of some sort (be careful, these annoying pieces are easy to loose and impossible to find and have a tendency of going all over the place) and I think you will be able to slot the allen key in there and that should make it possible to loosen the cable pinch nut without much hassle.
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Old 08-08-23, 06:27 PM
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Vintage Steel,
I actually was able to source some of the band clamps but at a price of $20 per. The clamp nuts are pretty scarce and I could only find one out there($15). Th lock washers are going to be a bit to find but likely a special order item from a specialty bolt shop.
The nylon washers for the levers were an item I sourced from a company on the east coast that sold then as ledge washers, but I needed to send them samples for them to make them and I had to order 500 minimum so that is covered for the long term.
I keep a lot of small parts on hand and have five boxes of them separated by item. Every once in a while I won't have a part to bring something back to original, and soon I may be at that point on a lot of Campy small bits. Smiles, MH
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Old 08-08-23, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Mad Honk
Vintage Steel,
I actually was able to source some of the band clamps but at a price of $20 per. The clamp nuts are pretty scarce and I could only find one out there($15). Th lock washers are going to be a bit to find but likely a special order item from a specialty bolt shop.
The nylon washers for the levers were an item I sourced from a company on the east coast that sold then as ledge washers, but I needed to send them samples for them to make them and I had to order 500 minimum so that is covered for the long term.
I keep a lot of small parts on hand and have five boxes of them separated by item. Every once in a while I won't have a part to bring something back to original, and soon I may be at that point on a lot of Campy small bits. Smiles, MH
OK, good to know it's sorted. Yeah, small Campy parts have crazy prices. I was looking for cable adjusters recently (for Superbe 4700 brakes) and ended up getting some Campy Mirage ones and modifying them for the purpose. At least they were 5 bucks apiece, not 40 (Campy record brake cable adjuster). Yeah, definitely 500 nylon washers should be okay for a few weeks, methinks I guess at some point some companies will just start manufacturing copies of old designs. They actually do already, for example Dia Compe and Velo Orange.
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Old 08-08-23, 09:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Desert Ryder
Yeah. Same way to remove car caliper pistons. I actually don't need to remove them completely. When the front broke free there was a quick "snap" sound. That was the pistons breaking free because after that I could feel the pressure on my finger which was between the pistons.I was planning on putting a caliper block in it and using the air nozzle to blow in the air.
So the piston extended out with the air pressure. The block won't fit inbetween now. I plan on swapping the known good caliper on the front to the rear. The above caliper will be installed on the front and if it won't work I can get a different style since the fork mounts are, I believe, IS sized with an adapter to mount the Formula caliper.

I plan on flushing the lines to prebleed and prime the caliper to try and get most of the air out.
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Old 08-09-23, 12:01 AM
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Built a totally new front wheel...

...just need to build a back one. It was cathartic activity this weekend, the man who taught me how to build wheels passed away in November but I just found out last week. I built the wheel in exactly the manner he taught me. Shimano 105 hubs, DT dbl bt spokes, and MA 3 rim 36h. All NOS from my stash. Been holding on to these parts for 10+ years.


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Old 08-09-23, 02:59 PM
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More Moulton
Thanks to @Mad Honk & @VintageSteelEU for the Modolo tip

Got as far as I am going to get for now. I will probably do a thread for this bike at some point. Will be seeking opinions on direction, bike originally came frame only, so build is? I need to go back and look at the article written about the bike, I think it was outfitted with Cyclone at the time.



Need to get a T.A. crank puller or make the short trip to my local shop


There was a bit of comic relief in the middle of this one (and a reminder I why I shouldn't work on bikes in the living room!) When I was taking the pedals off every rotation produced a cloud of particles as the Christophe straps disintegrated, couldn't get the camera to capture it, but the pile on the rug tells the story
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Old 08-09-23, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by SoCaled
More Moulton
Thanks to @Mad Honk & @VintageSteelEU for the Modolo tip

Got as far as I am going to get for now. I will probably do a thread for this bike at some point. Will be seeking opinions on direction, bike originally came frame only, so build is? I need to go back and look at the article written about the bike, I think it was outfitted with Cyclone at the time.



Need to get a T.A. crank puller or make the short trip to my local shop


There was a bit of comic relief in the middle of this one (and a reminder I why I shouldn't work on bikes in the living room!) When I was taking the pedals off every rotation produced a cloud of particles as the Christophe straps disintegrated, couldn't get the camera to capture it, but the pile on the rug tells the story
It's a nice rug, I'd be careful not to annoy your significant other doing your wrenching over it
Glad I could help with the brakes.
The frame looks like a nice, well made racing one. It will build into a great ride for sure
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Old 08-09-23, 07:47 PM
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early 80s Guerciotti

More like cleaning than wrenching but I got this one down off the wall in the barn and cleaned an inch of dust off it and got it looking decent again. Early 80s Guerciotti Super Record with full pantographed component set. A beautiful blue.










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Old 08-09-23, 07:52 PM
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early 90s Diamondback Apex

Put this back together after stealing parts off it for various gravel bikes. Finally got everything back together and cleaned up. This was a very nice early mountain bike and is still a great commuter or gravel bike. Early 90s Diamondback Apex.




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Old 08-09-23, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by BlueDevil63
Put this back together after stealing parts off it for various gravel bikes. Finally got everything back together and cleaned up. This was a very nice early mountain bike and is still a great commuter or gravel bike. Early 90s Diamondback Apex.



And yes it has a very ugly seat right now.
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Old 08-10-23, 02:04 PM
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Always do both! & What started as a complete mystery . . . and then quickly made sense.

Swapped out the blown front tube on the Shogun Prairie Breaker I picked up a few weeks ago. Did not do the front, it was holding air, I only had one tube on hand. Fast forward to a test run on this bike and I found myself walking back up the hill to my house when the back went flat on me - Always do both!
So, I grabbed another tube from my local shop and got to changing it this a.m.


Just like the first, there was some sort of white grud all over the inside of the tire.


I was not expecting what I found next . . .


????



Now, in my head, I start writing, "So, a carpenter walks into a bikeshop . . ." jokes & "is this your pencil?" magic tricks, trying to figure how in the hell a piece of carpenter's pencil got inside my tire. Duh . . . it was a fail of someone's improvised tire lever! Now I can't help but picture the moment the pencil snapped, "I wonder where that went? Well whatever we'll find it later!"

Last edited by SoCaled; 08-10-23 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 08-10-23, 05:26 PM
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Quite busy, actually. Since I took my Grand Sprint apart and stashed away all the bits, I remembered that I used nipple washers in its wheelset and could really use them building up a wheelset on Campy hubs (Veloce rear, Xenon front). I identified the rims I had as Mach1 ER10 and they didn't really need the washers, but considering all spokes I had at hand were just a tiny bit too long (1-2mm), I figured the washers will take care of most of the excess. And they did. Also, the spoke holes in this rim are not offset, all go straight along the centre, so with nipple washers the spokes sit better at steeper angles.
Anyhow, the wheels build nicely and I was pretty happy with them. Not the lightest, but strong and sturdy. They were meant for a hybrid Tifosi bicycle. I took 10 speed Campy cassette off it and transplanted it onto 8 sp Veloce freehub and that seems to have gone well. The problems started when I put them on the bicycle. That wretched thing, which is supposed to be some sort of touring bicycle, doesn't have enough clearance for 700x28c tires and mudguards, especially in front! Whoever designed it is probably "design challenged". Additionally, brakes on the bicycle (Miche Performance, quite decent ones) won't handle 25mm wide rim that well. I could probably change the tyres to something like 700x25c and probably that would help with the mudguards, but not with the brakes. So the next step will be to dismantle both wheels and build another set. Problem is I don't have a matching set of 36H rims right now. I do have MA3 in a reasonable condition (and also built into some front wheel) and Open Pro in not totally rubbish condition.. I guess I will use MA3 for the rear and OP for the front. Back to square one.
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Old 08-13-23, 04:13 PM
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Half-step with a right size crank, I'm happy

Sometimes I cannot leave well enough along. After a posting from @Korina about shorter cranks, I tried a 165mm cranks and found that the shorter crank worked well with my shorter, for my overall size, legs. I found an Avocet crankset on E-Bay within my price range and it was a trifecta for me. 1. The right time period. 2. In good condition 3. With usable chainrings. A big plus is that I always liked these Avocet cranks and pretty much all of Avocet's line.


This is the sellers picture.

But I get it in and it has some scratches from wear. I get out some fine sandpaper, because I know it is anodized an using water and a drop of soap, lightly sand the crank arms. Damn, in no time at all I am through the anodizing! Now I have to remove the anodizing if I am going to get this looking decent again. A bunch of hours later and with the help of oven cleaner.......




The chainrings are 48/43/34. I finally have a half-step on a bike that doesn't have a three-speed. So, do I like the half-step? Heck yea! The shifts in the front are fast and easy because the steps are so small and I feel like I can always find a good gear. I don't even know my actual gear numbers yet, I only know that the large cog on the freewheel is a 32 and the small is a 14. I am unsure of exactly what is in between. It is a 5 speed freewheel, so there are only one or two possibilities.



Now, I just need more time to ride.
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Old 08-13-23, 04:47 PM
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I have so many projects, each advancing slowly and nothing seeming to be actually completed. Some of that is parts, but mostly it is me thinking too many bikes are "cool" and have potential, and frames that are desirable, but shipping charges run folks off.

This one should be relatively easy though. Picked it up locally for $25 thinking it would be great for parts and that I'd make wind chimes from the frame - but it was just too nice. The wheels are true, the hubs spin great. Shifting was marvellous. First thought was just get the dirt and grease off and pass it along. Good thing I didn't. FD clamp could give out any day and the rear jockeys are toast. Also, the frame looks like it has measles. Present plan is to clean it up, overpaint the "measles" using paint markers to add fucshia, lavender and light blue dots to transform disease to art. May end up adding color to the FD plate also. Then will clear coat, re-assemble (changing out cables, grease, jockeys and FD clamp - at least), and see who thinks it's cool enough to want it.


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Old 08-14-23, 05:20 AM
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Another set of wheels. I'm not as happy with it as I was with the one built on CXP ER10 25mm external width rims (those will still have to wait to find their purpose). The front one is built on a Mavic MA3 I was planning for something else and uses no-name spokes. Still, works pretty well and the rim is in a pretty good condition. The rear one is built on Mavic Open Pro rim, which must have been through some stuff. I had to use DT Swiss spokes on the drive side and Sapim on the non-drive side as it was the only combo I had that would work spoke-length wise and it was a massive headache to true. Long term, the hub should be relaced to some other rim, but it will be fine for some time. I took the bicycle for a test ride today and adjusted the derailleurs. If I had more spare time or was paid for this, I would do a full maintenance: strip the whole thing apart, de-rust and clean some bits, replace the cables and put everything back together with some fresh grease where applicable. But it's as road-worthy as it can be after several years of just collecting dirt and dust. Shifting works, brakes work well enough and it can be used. There's nothing more I can do without some investment.
But looking at how the frame is designed, my advice here would be to sell it as is for whatever someone is willing to pay and use the money to get a real bicycle to work better as a commuting bike with panier rack. Something where you can actually put mudguards and tires wider than 700x25c (and that is already a tight squeeze here). Something like a steel frame with Reynolds 531 tubing, nice dropouts with eyelets and braze-on rack mounting points. The thing below cost around $1000 when new. And quite honestly, I think that money could have been much better spent on something that's actually properly designed.


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Old 08-14-23, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Velo Mule
Sometimes I cannot leave well enough along. After a posting from @Korina about shorter cranks, I tried a 165mm cranks and found that the shorter crank worked well with my shorter, for my overall size, legs.

Now, I just need more time to ride.
::tips imaginary hat:: Happy to enable. Now go ride!
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Old 08-15-23, 09:32 AM
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This Bianchi has gotten a refurb, is pictured about midstream process of the fork being cleaned up. This was purchased as frame with hs and bb. Good times!
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Old 08-15-23, 01:22 PM
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Tested some parts and also tested the fit on my Sirrus restomod project.
IMG_4224 by 2cam16, on Flickr
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Old 08-15-23, 02:37 PM
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It's been seen here before but here's the updated 1975 Grand Jubile Mixte, now sporting interrupter brake levers and a seal of approval from Mrs. ascherer after a 10-mile ride. When I gave it to her last season she loved the ride and wanted a modern drivetrain, and I wanted better brakes. The dynamo/9-speed wheelset came from her Lotus Eclair (which I'll have to photograph next to document it's changes). I'm now casting about for a 22mm stem with less reach, ~60mm , staying French because she likes her narrow Randonneur bars with their 25mm clamp.
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Old 08-15-23, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by ascherer
It's been seen here before but here's the updated 1975 Grand Jubile Mixte, now sporting interrupter brake levers and a seal of approval from Mrs. ascherer after a 10-mile ride. When I gave it to her last season she loved the ride and wanted a modern drivetrain, and I wanted better brakes. The dynamo/9-speed wheelset came from her Lotus Eclair (which I'll have to photograph next to document it's changes). I'm now casting about for a 22mm stem with less reach, ~60mm , staying French because she likes her narrow Randonneur bars with their 25mm clamp.
Fabulous!

A Moto mixte from the hey day, so French and doesn't get any better, beautiful.
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Old 08-15-23, 03:35 PM
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I finally had some time to rebuild wheels for my commuting bike. This time with a set of Mavic MA40 rims. And, despite the rims being over 25 years old and previously used (still good though), they were a breeze to lace and true. I used the opportunity to swap the older freewheel with a newer, Hyperglide one. Also 6 speed and thankfully it's not one of the ghastly new ones. And decided to use a lowly Altus RD for now, because it's the least used Shimano derailleur I have. Looks a bit out of place, but works well. Finally, the indexing works again pretty well (Hyperglide freewheel was the key, it would seem). For some strange reason I'm still having problems with the lowest gear and I have to overshift a bit to make it work, but for now it's OK. Eventually I want to just go for the friction RD-6207 when I find one in a good shape, but for now it will do.
The brakes needed some attention as well. Didn't like the way they worked during the test ride, a bit stiff. So I had a closer look and came to a conclusion that I've cut the outer cable a bit too short. Only about 25-30mm too short, but new, longer outers sorted the problem. All back to normal now



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Old 08-15-23, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by merziac
Fabulous!

A Moto mixte from the hey day, so French and doesn't get any better, beautiful.
MerÁi! Even though itís about 100,000 sizes too small for me, it rides beautifully. And I flatter myself to think that the selection of modern components are at least sympathetic to the original style which couldnít be topped. But itís much more serviceable now.
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Curator/Team Mechanic: 2016 Dawes Streetfighter, 1984 Lotus Eclair, 1975 Motobecane Jubile Mixte, 1974 Raleigh Sports, 1973 Free Spirit Ted Williams, 1972 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Philips Sport





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Old 08-15-23, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by ascherer
MerÁi! Even though itís about 100,000 sizes too small for me, it rides beautifully. And I flatter myself to think that the selection of modern components are at least sympathetic to the original style which couldnít be topped. But itís much more serviceable now.
Well we know what it takes to make these into what we need and anytime the better half is happy we done good, this is a home run IMO.
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Old 08-15-23, 07:42 PM
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This was a frustrating exercise.
The Motobťcane I bought in January was on the small side of right for me, so I couldn't do much with the original stem.

This 44 cm Noodle is the third bar I've tried on this Technomic -- after I sanded it down to 22.0 mm -- and the disassembly and mounting of the bars was terrible, with the bar galling in the stem even when I carefully pried the clamp open a bit.

Upon inspection, there was a tiny raised lump of aluminum on the inside. Once it was sanded out, things got easier.
The Noodle is a fantastic bar. It is amazing how much of a difference the subtle curves make compared to the "classic" designs.
The old bikes are cheap; keeping them in Technomics, Noodles, B17s, and decent tires is absolutely killing the budget!

cheers -mathias
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