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1982 Trek 720 advice

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1982 Trek 720 advice

Old 01-28-20, 08:59 PM
  #1  
endoftheisland
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1982 Trek 720 advice

I'm kind of a newbie and don't know much about component compatibility... I'm looking for suggestions on a 720 I'm about to restore. It's got a strange mix of components - Campagnolo headset and shifters, an Avocet crankset, 700C Weinmann rims with Suzu hubs and Huret derailleurs. I'm wondering if i should replace the Avocet crankset with Sugina RT I have. And while I love Campy components on my road bikes, the shifters seem kind of out of place. I have spare Suntour shifters I could replace them with. I've also got a nice set of Shimano M700 high flange hubs. Would they pair well with the Weinmann rims? I've heard good things about Huret derailleurs so I'm interested in sticking with those. Thoughts?

Any advice or suggestions are appreciated!

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Old 01-28-20, 09:30 PM
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Thats an '83 720, first year for canti brakes. The '82 would've used center pull Gran Compes. The crank is a nice upgrade over stock. Personally I would leave it; but I'm biased as it's the same one I run on my '83 720. I'm sure someone will be along shortly to tell you the rear Huret derailleur is a ticking time bomb; but treat it well and don't abuse it and it'll likely be fine. Just don't pedal backward or push the bike backward unless you know the RD is aligned with the chosen gear. Otherwise you get binding and things go sour. Nice bike btw.
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Old 01-28-20, 11:51 PM
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Nice bike, I am partial to Avocet components. They were make by Ofmega in Italy I believe. Please correct me if I'm wrong here. Regardless of who made them for Avocet they are nicely made and look great. I wouldn't change a thing. Ride the bike a bunch and see how you like everything. If there are issues, address them. If not, ride on.

I don't see a problem with mixing component sets.

You might get comments about the foam handlebar covers. Most of us don't like them. I have to admit, that when they were popular, I hated them. This was a standard upgrade in the bike shop. Now that I am more, ahem, mature, I have to admit that they do the same thing as modern tapes. For me, I would replace the foamies for some modern tape. Or Newbaum's cushioned cloth tape. They just look better.
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Old 01-29-20, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Velo Mule View Post
Nice bike, I am partial to Avocet components. They were make by Ofmega in Italy I believe. Please correct me if I'm wrong here. Regardless of who made them for Avocet they are nicely made and look great.
Yesa, the Avocet cranks were re-branded Ofmega cranks. While the inner ring mounting stand-offs are arguably not as strong as the inner ring mounts on a Sugino RT crank, the Avocet arms are forged, while the RT arms are cast.
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Old 01-29-20, 08:22 AM
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This is all good advice. The bike is an '83 and the component group is good on this bike. Other than replacing the consumables and overhauling the bike, I wouldn't change much on that bike if it were mine. I would get rid of the bar tape, find some hoods for the brake levers, and replace the downtube levers with suntour bar end shifters. Those derailleurs are actually very good. I used them when I took my '83 Trek 720 on a cross country trip. @nesteel is right though you do not want to be careful about binding. I find that with the Huret RD on this bike, you need to let up a bit on the pedals before shifting. That's true with any RD actually but moreso with this one than with other designs. Other than that it is a fine rear derailleur that can take up unbelievable amounts of chain and does a fine job of shifting wide ranging gearing.
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Old 01-29-20, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by endoftheisland View Post
I'm kind of a newbie and don't know much about component compatibility... I'm looking for suggestions on a 720 I'm about to restore. It's got a strange mix of components - Campagnolo headset and shifters, an Avocet crankset, 700C Weinmann rims with Suzu hubs and Huret derailleurs. I'm wondering if i should replace the Avocet crankset with Sugina RT I have. And while I love Campy components on my road bikes, the shifters seem kind of out of place. I have spare Suntour shifters I could replace them with. I've also got a nice set of Shimano M700 high flange hubs. Would they pair well with the Weinmann rims? I've heard good things about Huret derailleurs so I'm interested in sticking with those. Thoughts?
Why do you need to replace any of the components?
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Old 01-29-20, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
This is all good advice. The bike is an '83 and the component group is good on this bike. Other than replacing the consumables and overhauling the bike, I wouldn't change much on that bike if it were mine. I would get rid of the bar tape, find some hoods for the brake levers, and replace the downtube levers with suntour bar end shifters.
I'm sure the existing shifters work fine for what they are and while I absolutely agree with you that bar end shifters would be better than downtube shifters the only reason to do so here would be if the OP (like you and i) hates downtube shifters and loves bar ends.
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Old 01-29-20, 07:23 PM
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You have a really great bike . Depending on what you would like to do, I would suggest, like others, a set of SunTour bar end shifters and perhaps replacing the rear derailleur with a Shimano Deore, or XT, and perhaps a Shimano front derailleur. Although they shifted OK, I was never a fan of the Huret Duopar front and rear derailleurs. As noted, the Avocet crankset is of excellent quality. I am currently in the process of building up a 1984 burgundy 720 frameset into a nice touring bike-joining the many others that I already own. This one will be special.
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Old 01-29-20, 07:36 PM
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Very nice original! If all components function, I wouldn't change them. Sure there's minor quips of this or that, but that's the charm of these classics.

On that note, the Weinmann concave rims haven't been mentioned. Popular to some for their cool factor but just as many probably don't like for the hassle of water drainage, non-hooked bead and weight. I like the unique and using required wire bead tires, keeping a close monitor on air pressure is no biggie.
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Old 01-29-20, 11:39 PM
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When that bike was new Avocet cranks would have been considerably more expensive than Sugino and considered an upgrade. They are a bit on the light side but high quality.

Campy shifters are dead reliable and shift perfectly pretty much forever. (except for the last couple years with the nylon inserts but let's forget that) No point in switching them unless you go to bar ends or something. I like duopars but I've never thought of them as super reliable. They are super cool but be cautious. Kind of like a Citroen DS.

I hated grab on grips then and hate them still, so I'd encourage you to get some new tape. Some people liked them, obviously. There were at one time a thinner version called Grab-on racing grips, which time seems to have forgotten.
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Old 01-29-20, 11:56 PM
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Solid bike and solid advice! I love bar ends, so that would be my suggestion too. But if you donít, ratcheting Suntour DT shifters would be better and more functional than the campy levers.

But ride it for a while and see how it like it as is.

Congrats on a classic!
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Old 01-30-20, 08:47 PM
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Thanks for all the great advice. I'm curious about the feedback on the year, Everyone seems to agree that it's a 1983. Interestingly, the Vintage Trek website lists the serial number, 34327 as a 1982. Vintage Trek Bicycle Frame Serial Numbers in 1982

Maybe I'm reading it wrong. Is there another source for SN data?
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Old 01-30-20, 10:36 PM
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No, you're reading it right. Another anomaly, Mandela effect, timeline shift, whatever. Or maybe the BB was just struck with an SN in '82 and sat on a shelf for a year. The above-mentioned differences, at the very least the under-the-BB shift cable routing, lean toward an '83. I have a similarly mysterious 400 series, early '82 serial number (10920?), but clearly sporting the same cable routing as yours. Interestingly, and perhaps NOT coincidentally, mine also has a Tim Isaac BB shell (60TSI in my case). Maybe a number of his shells / lugsets were set aside for later builds.

Hmmm, trivia question that MIGHT shed a twinkle of light, for any "real" '83 owners following. Do the '83s that have an actual '83 SN do the cable routing with grooves and bolts like shown above? Or do they use the more commonly found plastic guide screwed into the shell? My mystery bike is cabled like the OP's; maybe that's a characteristic of the TSI shells :shrug: .
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Old 01-31-20, 07:59 AM
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Interesting comments about the Weinmann rims. I am not familiar with them. Can you elaborate on your comments about water drainage and the requirement for beaded tires? And also tire pressure? Thanks for your help and great feedback!

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Old 01-31-20, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by endoftheisland View Post
Thanks for all the great advice. I'm curious about the feedback on the year, Everyone seems to agree that it's a 1983. Interestingly, the Vintage Trek website lists the serial number, 34327 as a 1982. Vintage Trek Bicycle Frame Serial Numbers in 1982

Maybe I'm reading it wrong. Is there another source for SN data?
Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
No, you're reading it right. Another anomaly, Mandela effect, timeline shift, whatever. Or maybe the BB was just struck with an SN in '82 and sat on a shelf for a year. The above-mentioned differences, at the very least the under-the-BB shift cable routing, lean toward an '83. I have a similarly mysterious 400 series, early '82 serial number (10920?), but clearly sporting the same cable routing as yours. Interestingly, and perhaps NOT coincidentally, mine also has a Tim Isaac BB shell (60TSI in my case). Maybe a number of his shells / lugsets were set aside for later builds.

Hmmm, trivia question that MIGHT shed a twinkle of light, for any "real" '83 owners following. Do the '83s that have an actual '83 SN do the cable routing with grooves and bolts like shown above? Or do they use the more commonly found plastic guide screwed into the shell? My mystery bike is cabled like the OP's; maybe that's a characteristic of the TSI shells :shrug: .
Looking at the 1982 SNs- after this batch, there is ONE other 21Ē 720 frame built. As itís a relatively unpopular size AND an obscenely expensive bike- it may have been built up bare like an 82, not sold, sat in Trekís stock and then had the 83 spec braze ons added. Or it was built in 82 in preparation for the 83 model year.

Remember there are no 1985 Trek 720s- every single one of those frames were built in 84. The big cue in seeing them is the downtube decal (although there are other little differences- the DT decal is easily seen).

To that end, even though the frames are (usually) the same between the frames decaled as 84 and 85- 85s are referred to as 85s because of the decal. Additionally- as I recall, bikes built in October and later are generally built to be next yearís model. In the case of the 82 vs 83- the 83 had canti bosses- so thereís a concrete difference-
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Old 01-31-20, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by endoftheisland View Post
Interesting comments about the Weinmann rims. I am not familiar with them. Can you elaborate on your comments about water drainage and the requirement for beaded tires? And also tire pressure? Thanks for your help and great feedback!

I have not owned the concave rims but I built several wheel sets and worked on other bikes that had them. Water and dirt accumulate in the dished area and it's a pain to clean them. No experience with the bead issue but my own observation is that many of the rims have bad spots where the joint was welded and then ground down. Many times they went too far on the grinding and there's a noticeable divot that can be felt when braking.

Novel look and reportedly hella strong, but I've never been tempted to use them myself.
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Old 01-31-20, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by endoftheisland View Post
I'm kind of a newbie and don't know much about component compatibility... I'm looking for suggestions on a 720 I'm about to restore...
Any advice or suggestions are appreciated!
Great bike. That's a small frame. How tall are you? That's the first question and starting point to anything else.

Assuming that the bike fits you, then I agree with others who advised removing the bar foam and replacing the downtube shifters with SunTour barcons. Any decent cork tape would do for you. Those would be my only changes at this point. And, of course, new tires.
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Old 02-01-20, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by endoftheisland View Post
Interesting comments about the Weinmann rims. I am not familiar with them. Can you elaborate on your comments about water drainage and the requirement for beaded tires? And also tire pressure? Thanks for your help and great feedback!

Those are really strong but they are hookless rims and can not handle really high pressure and folding tires very well. The concave rims were also inconsistent in the grinding of the welds. The set I have are overground creating divots that are catchy on the braking surface.
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Old 05-15-20, 09:15 AM
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Finished up the 1983 Trek 720


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Old 05-15-20, 12:57 PM
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It looks like you worked through some component comparability issues and adjusted it to fit. It looks great. Five speed is plenty with the 1/2 step plus granny. If you haven't yet, read up on that. It is a kick.
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Old 05-15-20, 02:47 PM
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Looks great, nicely done! Strangely enough, this afternoon I was browsing ebay and saw a familiar group of mismatched components: Avocet, Huret, Campagnolo!

https://www.ebay.com/itm/SEROTTA-NOV...8AAOSwsQJeuIwF
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Old 05-15-20, 03:56 PM
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Nice build!!! I dig the Shimano cantis on there!
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Old 05-15-20, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by endoftheisland View Post
Interesting comments about the Weinmann rims. I am not familiar with them. Can you elaborate on your comments about water drainage and the requirement for beaded tires? And also tire pressure? Thanks for your help and great feedback!

I had a 1973 Fuji for which I had custom wheels built around 1977 when I could finally afford them. They were Campy Tipo HF 36 hole hubs with TE DB spokes and 27" concave Weinmann non-hook bead rims. I used Clement wire bead clinchers in 27x1 and 27x1 1/8 for years, having bought a decent supply. These could routinely be pumped to 90 pounds according to my Silca Pista floor pump. I rode that setup for at least 10 years. I had a hiatus from cycling for about 10 years and started riding again regularly on an off until I retired and got back into regular riding. By them my supply of Clements was gone and decent 27" tires were hard to find. I found that the tires I did find would blow off the rim at 76 pounds. IT was not until I found a set of Bontragers that I could go back to 85+ on 1 1/8 tires. I later sold that bike for a new bike so I could get 700c rims and a better frame fit as I had lost height over the years..

The concave Weinmann rims over the 35+ years I rode them only needed truing once They just never went out of round or true, even as my weight fluctuated up to Clyde level for a few years and back, and some rough road riding. I used them with Dia-Compe center and sidepulls, Mafac Racers, and Shimano 600 calipers with stock shoes or for a while the finned shoes and coolstops salmon pads. They never exhibited undue brake track wear. A lot of our riding would now be considered gravel as we rode on canal towpaths and logging trails in PA. One thing I did not do was ride in the rain. That rim used to be a 'go to' rim for tandems and touring and could be had in 40 hole and special order 48 holes using Phil Wood hubs. My wheel builder said they were not the lightest, but were one of the strongest rims out at the time. I never saw a set as OEM.

They were not a true box rim, but had two small boxed areas at the edges of the concave and had ferrules. I kept my bike clean and the rims still looked great when I left that bike go.

Hope this helps.
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Old 05-16-20, 10:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
...It looks great. Five speed is plenty with the 1/2 step plus granny. If you haven't yet, read up on that. It is a kick.
+1 on both. Looks like you donít have a wide enough FW to take advantage of your half step crankset. If itís 50/45, you will need 14-17-21-26-32 to make it work properly. Itís not easy to find, but pastorbob might be able to build one up for you. Iíve seriously considered having him make me a 6s with an added 12t sprocket.
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