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Another mystery vintage Trek frame ?

Old 11-02-16, 07:56 AM
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ppg677
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Another mystery vintage Trek frame ?

Hi, here is an impulsive purchase I made. A mysterious vintage frame advertised as a Trek. I paid $70 which includes seat, Laprade seatpost, headset, stem, and bottom bracket. The paint is in decent shape (the entire bike needs cleaned up). The lower downtube may have been resprayed with white spray paint. The rest appears like the classic Imron trek paint.

Here's the mystery-- it was advertised as a Trek but I'm doubting it is a Trek. As shown in the pictures, it does not have "Trek" cast into the tops of the seat stays like every other Trek frame I've ever seen. The paint says "Pro Series" on the top tube, but the geometry suggests this is a sport touring and most certainly not a 560 Pro Series frame. The drop outs are Campagnolo.

Yet the serial number is G4G8M36 which matches Trek's serial number scheme suggesting it is a 1978 TX700 24" frame. There is also a 4-digit code underneath the serial. The CtC seat tube measures 23.5" (probably 24" center-to-top). However every picture of a TX700 frame I've seen indeed as TREK cast into the seat stays.

I live in Madison. It is not uncommon to find other strange Trek frames around here given the proximity to the factory.

My best guess is that this is indeed a TX700 frame, lacks the TREK seat stay casting for whatever reason, and was repainted a funky patriotic scheme. Note this "patriotic red/white/blue" paint scheme did appear on some other bikes in the mid-80s-- notably the first aluminum Trek 2000.









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Old 11-02-16, 08:34 AM
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I believe that back in the day Trek had a factory repaint program that would repaint bikes in the current year colors. That might be what you have.
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Old 11-02-16, 08:42 AM
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That application of the blue doesn't look very professional to me, so I'm guessing it's a home-brew of some sort.
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Old 11-02-16, 08:50 AM
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That's a nice looking frame. They did some custom work those years. I'd say a columbus 9xx something, but those rack and fender brazes? I've got a very nice 620 (85?) that is considered "Sport Touring" and it is a really nice bike. I know you didn't lose any skin at $70.00.
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Old 11-02-16, 08:59 AM
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Casting was a mid-late 80s thing, so irrelevant for this frame. That is not an original paint job.
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Old 11-02-16, 10:14 AM
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I think TX700s would all have had a riveted on head badge. Check for holes down the head tube. If it is, I'd bet the tt cable guides were added at the repaint. Nice bike, whatever it is.
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Old 11-02-16, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by jeirvine View Post
I think TX700s would all have had a riveted on head badge. Check for holes down the head tube. If it is, I'd bet the tt cable guides were added at the repaint. Nice bike, whatever it is.
Yup, and every picture of a TX700 I've seen has Trek lettering cast into the seat stays.

Maybe @JohnDThompson can shed some light.
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Old 11-02-16, 11:25 AM
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I am no Trek expert, so this is a sincere question... but has anyone ever seen a Trek fork crown like this?.

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Old 11-02-16, 11:41 AM
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HA! I was looking at that one. A bit too far from me, and the repaint was killing me to go look. Very interested to see what the verdict is on this one.
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Old 11-02-16, 11:44 AM
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If the serial number is as it appears to me (G4G8M36), that seems to indicate a few things:

1) It is a TX700 or TX770
2) It is a 24" frame
3) It was made in July 1978
4) It could be Columbus tubing rather than Reynolds

But I don't think they were using those "Pro Series" stickers until 84-85-ish. Maybe someone added that, though, along with the repaint.
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Old 11-02-16, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
I am no Trek expert, so this is a sincere question... but has anyone ever seen a Trek fork crown like this?.
I'm not either, but the fork looks lower grade than the rest of the frame. I am thinking replacement
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Old 11-02-16, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by cyclotoine View Post
I'm not either, but the fork looks lower grade than the rest of the frame. I am thinking replacement
Ok, so leading theory is: Trek TX700 frame. Replaced fork. Repainted in 85/86 to match this scheme on a Trek 2000:



Originally Posted by Senrab62 View Post
HA! I was looking at that one. A bit too far from me, and the repaint was killing me to go look. Very interested to see what the verdict is on this one.
I would have passed, but it was a 5 minute drive away from me. Fits me perfectly. And the headset/stem/seat/seatpost/BB pretty much pay for the frame.

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Old 11-02-16, 12:01 PM
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Apart from the lack of "TREK" stamped into the seat stay caps, the frame does look consistent with a late 70s to early 80s Trek. It has certainly been repainted, though, and the head badge and "Pro Series" decal are likely newer than the rest of the frame. The cable guides and rack mounts could have been added prior to the repaint. The fork is likely a replacement. It looks like a Japanese production fork. Do the fork ends match the Campagnolo rear dropouts? I'd be curious to see if perhaps the TREK stamping on the seat stay caps may have been filled in and filed smooth.
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Old 11-02-16, 12:03 PM
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The Pro Series should have "Trek" engraved on the lower head lug.
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Old 11-02-16, 12:05 PM
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Interesting for sure. Must be some custom or post hours personal frame as it does lack the trek stamps on stays found on standard 78 5xx line. The stickers, paint scheme and headbadge look like the 86 series (blend of pro and tri), but frame is obviously not from that era but it does looks like a semi official factory repaint for the mid 80s. You can see my 78 512 for comp here.
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Old 11-02-16, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by ppg677 View Post
Ok, so leading theory is: Trek TX700 frame. Replaced fork. Repainted in 85/86 to match this scheme on a Trek 2000:





I would have passed, but it was a 5 minute drive away from me. Fits me perfectly. And the headset/fork/seatpost/BB pretty much pay for the frame.
Very true. And paint is not impossible to redo if one chose to. I ride the same size in Trek frames myself. The deal was great, but then I have to factor in time and gas. Time being the big killer for me.

Good pick up!
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Old 11-02-16, 02:07 PM
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Yup -replaced fork. Look at all the headset spacers.
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Old 11-02-16, 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Pemetic2006 View Post
The Pro Series should have "Trek" engraved on the lower head lug.
Except when the frame braze date is out of that "era". My '86 760 Pro Series has an '84 braze date, '85 components and '86 "Pro Series" paint. These old Treks have that mystique about them.
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Old 11-02-16, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by jeirvine View Post
Yup -replaced fork. Look at all the headset spacers.
Fork crown suggests a mid-to-lower level Miyata or Univega so not quite up to the rest of the Trek frame, but not too horrid either.
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Old 11-02-16, 07:14 PM
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My worry would be with a replaced fork, cable guides and rack mounts added, repaint and new decals, was the bike seriously damaged and someone was able to straighten it out and or do some welding on it, and add the stuff then repaint it to make it look good.

Personally I would keep away from it.
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Old 11-02-16, 07:50 PM
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Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
My worry would be with a replaced fork, cable guides and rack mounts added, repaint and new decals, was the bike seriously damaged and someone was able to straighten it out and or do some welding on it, and add the stuff then repaint it to make it look good.

Personally I would keep away from it.
Why?

I ride two other old Trek frames. One had a bent fork that Yellow Jersey bent back for me. The other one has been through hell and back like you describe-- no serial number, deralleur hanger was cut off and re-welded back on, cable guides were cut off and re-brazed back on, a downtube dent is filled with brass, water-bottle braze-ons were added to seat tube, rack mounts added, stripped and repainted several times, etc. Both are wonderful-riding bikes that I've put many hundreds of miles on.

I think I'll turn this one into a single-speed bike for fun.
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Old 11-03-16, 04:09 AM
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Originally Posted by ppg677 View Post
Why?

I ride two other old Trek frames. One had a bent fork that Yellow Jersey bent back for me. The other one has been through hell and back like you describe-- no serial number, deralleur hanger was cut off and re-welded back on, cable guides were cut off and re-brazed back on, a downtube dent is filled with brass, water-bottle braze-ons were added to seat tube, rack mounts added, stripped and repainted several times, etc. Both are wonderful-riding bikes that I've put many hundreds of miles on.

I think I'll turn this one into a single-speed bike for fun.
Why you ask, for all the reasons you said; we don't know how good of a job the person did plus they completely destroyed the value of the frame even if there was no damage, except we know about the fork, because the repaint is not factory colored nor are the decals the correct year and model of the original frame which is probably a TX700.

It's up to you, I'm just saying I wouldn't buy it, to many if's about it that could be hidden, and the non original fork, brazeons, color, and decals.
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Old 11-03-16, 04:33 AM
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Originally Posted by OldsCOOL View Post
Except when the frame braze date is out of that "era". My '86 760 Pro Series has an '84 braze date, '85 components and '86 "Pro Series" paint. These old Treks have that mystique about them.
Coincidently I just now (literally a minute ago) saw that bike in the "how about only 85" thread.
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Old 11-03-16, 05:40 AM
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Yes-headbadge (if original) is post 83. The vintage trek site has much info including serial number dating.
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Old 11-03-16, 06:41 AM
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Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
Why you ask, for all the reasons you said; we don't know how good of a job the person did plus they completely destroyed the value of the frame even if there was no damage, except we know about the fork, because the repaint is not factory colored nor are the decals the correct year and model of the original frame which is probably a TX700.

It's up to you, I'm just saying I wouldn't buy it, to many if's about it that could be hidden, and the non original fork, brazeons, color, and decals.
I'm not into authenticity. I'm into good riding bikes. Workmanship can be apprised by visual inspection. You cannot half-ass a brazing job and make it look good.

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