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Circa 81' Nishiki Touring bike ID help - Vertical Dropouts!

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Circa 81' Nishiki Touring bike ID help - Vertical Dropouts!

Old 01-21-20, 11:02 AM
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TheSuntourKid
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Circa 81' Nishiki Touring bike ID help - Vertical Dropouts!

Hi Bikeforums! I've perused many a thread in C&V over the years, but this is my first post. I was directed here from a reply to my ****** post yesterday trying to identify a new-to-me Nishiki. The frame has been repainted and only the stamped seatstay caps let me identify the frame as a Nishiki, though it has many similarities to my 81' International. According to the serial # on the BB shell (KA 16761) it is a 1981 production, but it doesn't match any pictures in 81' catalogs I can find, or for that matter any other early 80s Nishiki road frames I can find pictures of.

There are some really cool details, like the vertical dropouts, that make it very unique and desirable to me. I've done my best to document all of these on Imgur. I would post photos and links directly but I've been told I cannot till I have more experience as a user, so the ****** user who recommended I post here has graciously offered to follow this post up with some links.

I'd love to hear anyone's best guess as to what this might be. Many details and pictures will be included in the links, but I will do my best to provide other measurements and links to more pictures if it is helpful. Thanks!
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Old 01-21-20, 11:04 AM
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Posting photo link to help out, several additional photos in the link, main image posted here:

https://imgur.com/a/uogohm4


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Old 01-21-20, 01:15 PM
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@T-Mar may be able to shine some light here.
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Old 01-21-20, 01:26 PM
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Vertical dropouts were popular on touring bicycle even back into the 1970s. It prevented the rear wheel from being pulled out of position under the high torque conditions experienced with fully loaded touring bicycles. This sounds like a Nishiki Ultra Tour. They used vertical dropouts and were in production circa 1981.
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Old 01-21-20, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
Vertical dropouts were popular on touring bicycle even back into the 1970s. It prevented the rear wheel from being pulled out of position under the high torque conditions experienced with fully loaded touring bicycles. This sounds like a Nishiki Ultra Tour. They used vertical dropouts and were in production circa 1981.
I had considered that. Were you able to check the Imgur link? this frame seems to have elements from the various higher-end Nishiki touring frames, but doesn't particularly match the Ultra Tour more than it matches the Continental or the International etc.

I've noted in my own experience that the top tube is significantly shorter than my International from the same year, but I don't know if the other touring frames also had a 61cm CtC top tube in the 62cm size like the International, or closer to 57cm like this mystery frame. Then there is the seat-tube which I believe takes a 26.8 instead of the 26.6 of the International, but I don't know what this says about the tubing or if it is the same as an Ultra Tour. I find it peculiar that all the Ultra Tours seem to have double eyelets as would be expected of a serious tourer of the time, though this frame has single eyelets, making me think it was perhaps a more "sport-touring" oriented model.
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Old 01-22-20, 08:46 AM
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Any ideas, anyone?
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Old 01-23-20, 05:39 PM
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I've finally had the time to review the pics of the OP's fame ans compare them against my literature and samples in my database.

There are several discrepanices compared to the 1981 USA literaturefor the Ultra Tour, which is the only model with vertical dropouts;

1. Stay cap is embossed versus none in literature.
2. Top tube has cable tunnels versus cable stops in literature
3. No shift lever bosses versus brazed-on bosses mentioned in literature.
4. Dropouts have single eyelets versus dual eyelets in literature.
5. Rear deailleur cable stop under chainstay versus on top of chain stay in literature.
6.Chrome on dropouts versus none in literature.

Extant samples agree with literature though some have top tube cable tunnels.

We should consider that it could be a 1982 model manufactured in late 1981. While I don't have the 1992 USA literature, extant samples are consistent with 1981 literature, with the exception of having top tube cable tunnels and a top mount shift lever boss.

A Continental was mentioned as one possible model. This a Canadian model and the serial numbers would have a C-prefix, instead of a K-prefix. Still, there is a possibility of operator error, so I compared the frameset with my 1981 and 1982 Canadian literature. The Continentals match the OP's frame for features 1, 2 (1982 only), 3 & 6. However, both years have double eyelets on the rear droputs and cable stops on top of the chain stays. There's also no sign of a 2nd set of bottle bosses under the down tube.

The bottom line is that I'm unaware of anything that is an exact match. It's possible that the frame has been modified given the repaint and that complicates matters. The 2nd set of bottle bosses under the down tube, in conjunction with the vertical dropouts would seem to poin to a touring model, However, I would expect a longer top tube. If the 2nd set of bottle bosses were an addition, I'd expect the seat tube be a more likely location, unless they were added within the first few years after the frame was built.

Given the tyre clearance and brake drop with 700 x 25C. it would seem that this is a USA touring model, which were designed ed for 27" x 1/1/4. The Canadian touring models of this era were spec'd with 700 x 28C.
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Old 01-27-20, 11:22 AM
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Thanks T-Mar! I really appreciate your extensive research.

I must apologize for my late response, I thought the thread had died since I hadn't recieved an email alert since the 22nd.

I think we've reached a similar conclusion about the frame. While it does not match any known references, it is most likely an Ultra Tour perhaps with a minor spec change at the factory or some end-user modification. I will consider this assumption correct enough for the purposes of procuring decals.
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Old 01-29-20, 11:36 AM
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Hi TheSuntourKid,

your Nishiki frame is a Cresta. I believe that this is the first version of the Cresta and it was not a touring bike design. I have seen two others like yours with the same first 4 characters of the serial number.

Here is a link to a Cresta like yours:

Nishiki Serial Number Database


Edit: Later versions of the Cresta were touring bikes.

Last edited by Hummer; 01-29-20 at 11:39 AM. Reason: spelling and more info
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Old 01-29-20, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by TheSuntourKid View Post
Thanks T-Mar! I really appreciate your extensive research.

I must apologize for my late response, I thought the thread had died since I hadn't recieved an email alert since the 22nd.

I think we've reached a similar conclusion about the frame. While it does not match any known references, it is most likely an Ultra Tour perhaps with a minor spec change at the factory or some end-user modification. I will consider this assumption correct enough for the purposes of procuring decals.
Originally Posted by Hummer View Post
Hi TheSuntourKid,

your Nishiki frame is a Cresta. I believe that this is the first version of the Cresta and it was not a touring bike design. I have seen two others like yours with the same first 4 characters of the serial number.

Here is a link to a Cresta like yours:

Nishiki Serial Number Database


Edit: Later versions of the Cresta were touring bikes.
Quoting OP so he gets an alert.
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Old 01-29-20, 01:23 PM
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WOW! That's definitely it, the perfectionist in me is satisfied! Thank you Hummer !

I actually was given a Cresta that must be a year or two later (not in the same state at the moment or I'd check), but it's a sort of muted pinkish-reddish color with canti brakes and Suntour symmetric shifters. Can't recall if they were band-on or brazed, but certainly significantly different and no vertical dropouts either I believe. It's a shame there's no extant catalog shots of this version of the Cresta. It would be interesting to see Nishiki's marketing blurb describing it's intended segment of the market.

I appreciate you quoting me. I'm still getting the hang of this. In regards to receiving notifications am I doing something incorrect by having subscribed to the thread and having instant email notification selected? Perhaps I simply did not see T-Mar's post due to a glitch?

Edit: Your link prompts even more questions! What is Tange Special Series Touring? I have never seen this sticker before.

Last edited by TheSuntourKid; 01-29-20 at 01:29 PM.
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Old 01-29-20, 01:51 PM
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Subscribing with instant Email notification should be enough to generate the alert Email. One remote possibility is that, since the subscription/reply Emails are worded differently from "you have been quoted" Emails or 'mention" (e.g TheSuntourKid ) Emails, your junk/mail filter may be shunting the subscription/reply Emails somewhere where you don't expect. Not likely, but not impossible.
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Old 01-29-20, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Subscribing with instant Email notification should be enough to generate the alert Email. One remote possibility is that, since the subscription/reply Emails are worded differently from "you have been quoted" Emails or 'mention" (e.g TheSuntourKid ) Emails, your junk/mail filter may be shunting the subscription/reply Emails somewhere where you don't expect. Not likely, but not impossible.
Looking in the rules it seems that instant only continues to send updates if you visit the site after each notification. I hadn't because I had simply read the email and not navigated back to the site. I think I've got it down now.

Also, thank you shoota , I had not realized it was you who quoted me earlier.
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