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Vintage Japanese bikes to collect

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Vintage Japanese bikes to collect

Old 03-03-19, 09:49 AM
  #26  
aprieto28
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I have both Italian and Japanese Vintage Steel Lugged Frame bikes. I also have a Carbon Fiber bike too. I enjoy riding them all. I plan to sell them all when I'm too old to ride them anymore. I'll take what the market is at the time. If you can sell them for more than you have invested in them, you done good!
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Old 03-03-19, 10:27 AM
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One source for Japanese bikes is the recent book by William Bevington/Scott Ryder "Japanese Steel: Classic Bicycle Design from Japan".

Once you cross a certain threshold, other than the racing history associated with a particular bike/brand, the quality is hard to distinguish. A hand made Japanese, Italian, French, American, etc. frame in a classic lugged and high/highest quality steel tube set will be a fine bike. There were master builders working for all Japanese, Italian, French and American manufacturers, their choice of tubing, geometry and care in construction make the frame that makes the bike.

There were also many small production hand made bikes coming from Japan, just as there were in Italy, so the lack of name recognition (could be your decision point), but if you ignore name recognition and look at the bike you'll often find a diamond, such as my Takahashi-Sannow Sport with Tange Champion lugged frame, chromed frame and lugs (with painted inserts), fast back seat stay, SunShine Pro-Am hubs and a complete First Generation (Black) Dura Ace Gruppo.
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Old 03-03-19, 11:23 AM
  #28  
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The best way to invest in any "collectable" is to only buy what you really like. That way, even if the item loses value, you still profit from the enjoyment it gives you.
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Old 03-03-19, 12:26 PM
  #29  
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If you are interested in your grandchildren's inheritance, I'm not sure bikes are the way to go. Start them a 401K and if we don't abandon our economic system by the time they can benefit, great.

If you are interested in your grandchildren riding great bikes that hold their value and don't break the bank, there are great Japanese bikes all over the place.

The two goals don't necessarily complement each other. I'm not sure even nice Italian bikes are an investment to leave as an inheritance, other than a cool bike.

Now, if you want them to have ardent admirers:
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Old 03-03-19, 12:46 PM
  #30  
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yeah, invest in real estate, not bikes. In the end, the space you store the bikes is the actual investment.
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Old 03-03-19, 12:51 PM
  #31  
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We 'ride' our investments like our bikes. ��

Brow wipe.... cryptocurrencies..... sigh.... and good luck.

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Old 03-03-19, 01:24 PM
  #32  
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I actually think that some bikes can be a good investment.

I've seen a few collections from members of this forum that will only go up in value as time goes on, and yes, they are investments. The collections I speak of are made up of Italian bikes however. Many of the Italian brands have that Ferrari-like allure, history and mystique that borders on magical, and maybe even a bit delusional, but either way its real, because Ferrari's values continue to increase steadily.

But other than Italian bikes, I don't see any other countries bike offerings as an investment no matter how nice they might be.
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Old 03-03-19, 01:34 PM
  #33  
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I don't see my (rather large and very nice) bike collection as an investment in anything other than my own pleasure. I've already purchased vintage bikes for my two grandsons (hope they fit!) and put them in climate controlled storage. As I age, I'll make sure my daughter and SiL each get the one they want, but the rest will probably be given away in an enjoyable manner, thus completely avoiding the answer to whether they were a good financial investment.

Like others have said, if you want to do something good for your progeny financially, buy low fee S&P ETF's and put 'em into a Roth so they grow tax free. The Magic of Compound Interest sadly does not apply to vintage steel.
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Old 03-03-19, 03:52 PM
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There's all sorts of interesting quality Japan made lightweights, bargain buys.

Excellent original 1986 Fuji Team / quad butted tubing raz-ma-taz / complete and fine Suntour Sprint group. $400 range.
https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F132964010109
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Old 03-03-19, 05:01 PM
  #35  
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Fuji Club & Team, Centurion Iron Man, Shogun Samurai, Lotus Elite, Miyata 1000, Bridgestone RB-1, Panasonic 5000, Univega Super are all fantastic bikes that were mass produced
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Old 03-03-19, 08:41 PM
  #36  
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Thanks for all the replies and insight. I agree about the Italian mystique. Me owned a 62 Alfa Giulietta and then a 1960 Maserati 3500 GT(for which I paid the princely sum of $500 after It sat in the parking lot of a Gas station with the windows rolled down for 10 years).

And the rarity equals value idea is also spot on.

What got me thinking was the knowledge that half the cars I have ever owned are now considered classics and fetch 5 and 6 figures today in the collector market (I paid: 1952 Chevy pick up,{$100** 1954 VW convert{$50** 1955 VW commercial van{$400**, 64 Dodge dart convert.{gift**, and the 62 Alfa. {$3000. **
Lots of high volume cars such as the 60's Mustang and Camaro have increased in value. It stands to reason that bikes might follow the same pattern.

Having said the above I would have to say based on my experience at the Bike Exchange, that it is hard to get more than $300-$400 for the bikes we rehab and sell. My best sales so far were a 74 Flandria with all Dura Ace($400) 82 Px10 ($400), Miyata 1200($600) and a Miyata 1000 (like new condition $400) . We currently have a Torpado Super Strada listed at $400 and haven't had any offers and I just finished a Univega Gran Premio and plan to put a $300 price on it.
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Old 03-04-19, 07:15 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by aprieto28 View Post
I have both Italian and Japanese Vintage Steel Lugged Frame bikes. I also have a Carbon Fiber bike too. I enjoy riding them all. I plan to sell them all when I'm too old to ride them anymore. I'll take what the market is at the time. If you can sell them for more than you have invested in them, you done good!
But that strategy doesn't account for inflation. The $150.00 you spent when you purchased the bike is worth much less at the time of sale so if you get your $150.00 back or realize a bit of profit, you still have lost money over time. Add to that the consumables that cost but don't up the overall price of the bike at resell time and it is a loser. Sorry, it doesn't add up economically. If you are happy with that, great! But as a long term investment strategy, not so much.
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Old 03-04-19, 09:02 AM
  #38  
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An enjoyer, not a collector

I am new to the forum, but now have a couple of vintage bikes that I enjoy including my old Super Sport purchased in 1976. I think that the enjoyment outweighs the collector value unless one has the primo stuff and has it for a very long time. The hunt, acquiring, and assembling of a collection would be the rewarding part. Real investing would require some pretty deep pockets.

Another hobby of mine is firearms, and I have a few that are now collectable. A couple parallel observations and thoughts are in order. Most of us aren't serious "collectors" but really just acquire what becomes available and strikes our fancy at the time. As such, we can have the enjoyment of using said item, and sometimes it gets to be a collectable along the way. This lessens our cost to "enjoy" the experience of said item at the time. It was well put by someone, that we are just renting the use of the collectable and then passing it on to the next "collector".
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Old 03-04-19, 10:13 AM
  #39  
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After shooting this Panasonic 7000 Pro for the book "Japanese Steel", I'm looking for one of my own!!


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Old 03-04-19, 10:25 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Giacomo 1 View Post
I actually think that some bikes can be a good investment.

I've seen a few collections from members of this forum that will only go up in value as time goes on, and yes, they are investments. The collections I speak of are made up of Italian bikes however. Many of the Italian brands have that Ferrari-like allure, history and mystique that borders on magical, and maybe even a bit delusional, but either way its real, because Ferrari's values continue to increase steadily.

But other than Italian bikes, I don't see any other countries bike offerings as an investment no matter how nice they might be.
I wish that more of the collectors believed this!
Unfortunately for me, the non-Italian bikes that pique my interest have been climbing steadily for the past couple decades: Singer, Herse, Baylis, Weigle, Sachs, DiNucci, Nagasawa, Hirose...

Brent
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Old 03-04-19, 11:40 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by rjhammett View Post
One of these.

Thats just plain HOT !😍
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Old 03-04-19, 11:46 AM
  #42  
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Small shop hand made will be more "collectible" I only have a mass market Bridge stone ..

one is not a collection, others have many road bikes hoarded..
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Old 05-22-19, 09:56 AM
  #43  
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Nagasawa.
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Old 05-22-19, 10:08 AM
  #44  
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I'd like a Bridgstone Radac for an investment.
The cult seems to only exist in japan, and abounds with custom paint jobs, etc.
It could be cheap here, then re-sold for a lot more to the cult in Japan.

Or not.
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Old 05-22-19, 10:17 AM
  #45  
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The 70s high end Fujis (newest, finest, america, ace) are all sweet. Team Miyatas are hot and ride great:



1991 Team Miyata
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Old 05-22-19, 10:55 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by garryg View Post
Once us baby boomers age another ten or fifteen years the vintage market will be much different. People will be giving away all those Colnagos
I think about this quite a bit, especially when watching some of those classic car auctions on TV.

Once a couple of generations pass along, the vast majority of this stuff will likely be considered junk, because nobody will appreciate it. Sure, a few examples will become "antiques" that look cool on display here and there, but there won't be a thriving market for these things.

If you want to collect for the joy of collecting, then go ahead. If you want to do it with the end goal of considerable appreciation in value, I don't think bikes fit the bill. You would have to find some items that aren't being widely collected right now, but could be down the road. And, frankly, I don't think there are many undiscovered niches out there these days.

I saw a trailer for a sort of documentary about the baseball card collecting craze. People seeing the value in rare old cards, and then stashing away contemporary cards with the idea that they would eventually become the rare, old, valuable cards. But it doesn't work that way. You can't create scarcity on your own. The other actors in the market aren't all stupid.

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Old 05-22-19, 09:09 PM
  #47  
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Buy it before I do!

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Nishiki-Ult...7/113754345617

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Old 05-22-19, 11:51 PM
  #48  
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Japanese bikes to collect? Do check out the "Japanese Steel" book as it does show many of the best/top of the line. Investment? No can't say that a vintage bike fits the term "investment", the latter presumes a value, but vintage bikes seem to flow up and down affected by many things, most importantly I think the declining numbers of us who longed for these bikes when we were young and poor. I don't know that this longing will transfer to the generation of MTB, Carbon Road Bikes and BMX bikes, look how hard it is for cars to capture a new generations interest, Ford other than the Mustang will sell no cars in the future.


So I say collect for the joy, the ride, the appreciation of craft and art and soul that someone put into the build and/or that someone wanted in their dream bike. You will have to define what a grail bike is to you, no one else can tell you that and if they deny your bike that status then they don't really understand.

For me to collect a grail vintage bicycle is to have the experience of that bike, wherein you meet their creator and who dreamed their creation, in this way they are like “stars” from the Little Prince:

“All men have stars, but they are not the same things for different people. For some, who are travelers, the stars are guides. For others they are no more than little lights in the sky. For others, who are scholars, they are problems... But all these stars are silent. You-You alone will have stars as no one else has them."

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Old 05-23-19, 02:38 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
I think about this quite a bit, especially when watching some of those classic car auctions on TV.

Once a couple of generations pass along, the vast majority of this stuff will likely be considered junk, because nobody will appreciate it. Sure, a few examples will become "antiques" that look cool on display here and there, but there won't be a thriving market for these things.

If you want to collect for the joy of collecting, then go ahead. If you want to do it with the end goal of considerable appreciation in value, I don't think bikes fit the bill. You would have to find some items that aren't being widely collected right now, but could be down the road. And, frankly, I don't think there are many undiscovered niches out there these days.

I saw a trailer for a sort of documentary about the baseball card collecting craze. People seeing the value in rare old cards, and then stashing away contemporary cards with the idea that they would eventually become the rare, old, valuable cards. But it doesn't work that way. You can create scarcity on your own. The other actors in the market aren't all stupid.
I'm glad somebody picked up on that quote. I agree. I have, on average, a number of decades to ride still, and as one of not too many in my generation that appreciate vintage rides, there may be a flood of old frames that go for a lot cheaper than before simply due to supply and demand/interest. Maybe I'll get a 64cm Colnago then... The auto auctions have been nuts the last ten or so years, and now the big buck stuff has crept up through the '80s and into the '90s with a number of cars, some of which I really like. Somehow my '97 Camaro Z28 is still riding the nadir of its value curve. Happily it/I/we go along because parts are cheap and the thing still has a lot of life. I'm not collecting it, that's for sure. The next model year's updated looks and LS1 engine debut fetch several grand more.

What will happen to pre-war anything? I guess Duesenbergs et al will always have their special place, but yeah, all that '50s through '70s stuff is going to take a hit.

I buy to ride and enjoy. I have no commuter bike. I have a rain/fender/winter bike (which is now my Davidson Impulse--excellent idea to enjoy being in un-fun weather), and the rest are "dry [day] bikes" which is usually anything fast. Rare frame? Nice parts? Skinny tires? Yes to all. The only Sunday Riders are ones with original equipment which usually means bad brakes--a no go for in-city Seattle.
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Old 05-23-19, 06:27 AM
  #50  
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i've got a '81 Concord (no -e) Pro II that was a pretty bottom of the line japanese bike boom. it's in pieces, most of which are not original, and i rattle-canned it not long after i got it. you could have it to add to your collections if you want! just pay for shipping and it's yours

nobody's mentioned concord yet, i'm assuming cause they are pretty much crap! but it was a nice twitchy steel ride, and maybe it's collectible since there aren't many out there?? have fun with your collecting!
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