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Peugeot UO-8

Old 06-12-20, 02:24 PM
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Maris61
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Peugeot UO-8

Hello, First-time post here! I just picked up a Peugeot, which appears to be a UO-8 from what I've read. It also has that Cadre Allege label. I refrain from saying what I paid for the time being, since I'm pretty sure it was too much but went ahead anyway since I got it for myself and not to resell (and this being a mostly seller's market right now w/ Covid and the summer). That said, I'm still holding onto my Raleigh Olympian mixte that I've been riding for years; it's way undersized, but it's been pretty comfortable w/ an adjustable stem and handlebar rotation. But I'm already off-topic. . . .
What I'm curious to know is other folks' thoughts on this model, esp. those who have ridden one. Before I purchased and sent it into the shop for tuneup, I was under the mistaken assumption that there wasn't even such a thing as a "bad" old Peugeot. Then I started looking at forum threads and some posts kind of trashing the UO-8. It seems that although there wasn't a huge difference in the frame materials next to some of the second-tier, 70s to early 80s Peugeot models, the components, rims (alloy vs. steel?), & even lugs or at least color of lugs were different enough. Is that right?

At this point I'll ultimately need to make up my own mind after riding it. But I'd still like to hear more about the UO-8 from others.

(Ignore the tape measure in the image; the seller was unsure how to measure the frame at first.)

Edit: Whoops--can't post pics yet!
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Old 06-12-20, 02:38 PM
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The UO8 is what it is, geometry-wise.

It's a long-wheelbase model so is less rewarding of hard pedaling efforts in general.

1979 and later models having Carbolite tubing also featured heavily-revised, more-sporting geometry, after what I think was decades of stasis.
Early-'80's lugless models further reduced these bike's weight.

The textured steel rims and the plastic Simplex derailers attract detractors on forums. The cottered steel, french-threaded bb/crankset also seems to be nobody's favorite setup.
The upgraded U09 and UO10 models from both before and after the '78-'79 frame change did away with the cottered cranks and steel rims, respectively, but used the same frame.
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Old 06-12-20, 02:56 PM
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My opinion is that UO-8 and there variants are great bikes. They don't have high strength tubing, however, they have a nice comfortable ride. Peugeot and many other French bike builders seem to have gotten the frame geometery to work well with the tubes that they used. A UO-8 is a low end bike, but there are plenty here that love them.

They fit fenders, wide tires and may even accommodate both. While the original derailleurs we good when new, they don't hold up so well. Replace it with a more modern version and you'll be fine. The Mafac brakes are excellent and are keepers.

The only contentious thing that some of us talk about is the crank. To go to a more modern 3-piece crankset or to keep the original. One reason that many people don't like the old cottered crank is that they have a difficult time getting the cotters out. With the right tools or a good bike shop, you can get it out, grease the bearings put it all back together again and be good for several more years. More modern 3 piece cranks are easier to work on, however, you will have to replace the bottom bracket and be sure to get the correct one.

If it were me, and the original crank was not too rusty, I'd keep it. Even with some rust, Evaporust works good.

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Old 06-12-20, 03:26 PM
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When I stated above that the UO-8 didn't have high strength tubing. That is not a big issue. Keep in mind that the bike's frame is plenty strong and reliant. High tensile steel enables frame makers to make the frame lighter, not stronger. So, no worries about the strength of the frame. It might weigh a tad more than a high tensile strength steel bike. Would you feel the difference? Probably not.

The other UO-8 issue is the rims. They were originally outfitted with steel rims. When new they are good, for what was available for about a hundred dollars. Now, we expect more. So an upgrade to aluminum rims is a good move. You can keep your original hubs and just get new rims or you can buy new wheels.

Keep replying until you get 10 posts then we can see your bike.
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Old 06-12-20, 05:23 PM
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I like them. As others have stated, certain upgrades can enhance the experience depending on the rider. I actually just sold mine today. Made a great winter bike.

I have had a Raleigh Grand Prix, Schwinn Le Tour, Fuji Special Road Racer, Steyr/Puch Bergmeister and others of the like, and the Peugeot offered the best ride, in my opinion. Mine was a '71.
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Old 06-12-20, 06:55 PM
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Great details on the specs.--thank you! Your quick bit about frame geometry and long wheelbase was also something really essential that led me to reading up some more on a point I've observed by sight only and never truly considered.
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Old 06-12-20, 06:59 PM
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Thanks, Velo Mule; I find some reassurance in this and definitely things to keep in mind for possible future upgrades.
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Old 06-12-20, 08:07 PM
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BFisher, Nice comparisons! I'm really curious to see how I find it as compares to my old Raleigh Olympian.
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Old 06-13-20, 07:58 AM
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My UO-8. Simple mods. I put a Brooks saddle on it, Nitto rando bars, and a pair of alloy wheels I picked up at swap meet for cheap. Everything else was original. I have no problems with Simplex derailleurs and to they perform rather well. Steel cottered cranks are heavy but work just fine. UO-8's are great riding bikes.
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Old 06-13-20, 08:02 AM
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The UO 8, 9, and 10 are great bikes. They make terrific town bikes. A pair of alloy wheels (it is build for 27 inch but the brakes can work with 700c) is a good upgrade for your UO 8. The delrin front derailleurs tend to crack. The mafac brakes are first rate.
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Old 06-13-20, 10:20 AM
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A couple of more things.

I found that I liked the frame size to be a bit on the large size when choosing a U08 (and keeping the stock stem length).
Although this makes the wheelbase longer yet, I appreciated the extra reach since the toptube length of this model is "effectively shortened" by the slack seat tube angle.
Beginning in 1979, the seat tube was steepened, so a more-normal frame size choice makes more sense (but still slightly to the large size please, since the stem is relatively short).

I advise riders of cotter-crank models to, if possible, leave the entire bottom bracket and crankset alone!
The bearing tension can be adjusted with the arms in place. The right cup tends never to loosen on factory-assembled bb's, but can be secured (if ever needed) with a thin wrench (and hammer), again with both arms left in place.

The bearings can be lubricated from outside, using the applicator tube on a can of aerosol lithium grease. Even a periodic oil-can drip will keep the original bottom bracket in good form for many years of normal use.

I mention all this because removing the cotters without damage is a real challenge that usually requires experience and the application of heat in conjunction with a press of some kind. Replacement cotters found today will not hold up to much riding, they are way too soft!!! Original cotters in the exact right diameter would have to be searched for and carefully selected, all of which makes lubricating the bearings in situ a good idea for most.

Here's the setup I use. Note how the applicator tube can be stretched into a needle applicator tube using heat:




Here's my 1972 and 1979 model U08 and U09, respectively. You might be able to see that the seat tube angle on the '79 model is steeper, and that the head tube angle is slacker. This was a comprehensive re-thinking of what people were looking for in a modestly-priced ten-speed bike.
**Note that the '79 model didn't come with the alloy rims and seatpost, leather saddle or lever hoods, I added those, along with a wider-ranging 6s freewheel (and of course the clipless pedals).



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Old 06-13-20, 12:05 PM
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I've owned several older Peugeot bikes over the years. Back in the day when they were still rolling off the showroom floors I worked as a bike mechanic at a dealer who sold them by the dozens. The U08 was by far the top seller, driven both by its lightweight and low price. There simply wasn't anything else price wise that came close. The last one I bought new back then cost me under $100 with tax back then. The bike was decently light, especially compared to other bikes in that price range.
All of mine came with leather Ideal saddles, Simplex Prestige derailleurs, Normandy high flange quick release hubs, Rigida serrated edge steel rims, Mafac Racer brakes, and steel cottered cranks. I seem to recall mine, in a 25" frame weighed in just a tad bit under 30lbs with the factory aluminum tire pump.
They were in the price range, if not a bit less than a Schwinn Varsity or various department store bikes at that time.
The ride was suitable for the average rider, they were very forgiving overall and gave very few problems.
As they aged, the plastic Simplex Prestige derailleurs and plastic shift levers would fail but replacement were cheap and plentiful. Most however upgraded their bikes to alloy bits.
I sold my last U08 a couple of years ago, it still had all is original equipment and decent blue paint. I let mine go for $350 on CL, it was only listed for a few days before it sold.
Whether or not they're 'collectible' or not doesn't seem to matter, there's a definite following for older Peugeot bikes, regardless of the model. bikes from the 70's seem to do best. Later models don't sell well here. I've had several 80's models and they just sit, but anything from the 70's is gone in days, or even hours most of the time. Especially larger models, which seem to be demand a premium these days.
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Old 06-13-20, 02:15 PM
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Man, 350 bucks, you did well!

I had wanted a U08 in a nostalgic way (remembering that as a young teenager, the better-off kids all had U08's), and after getting bit by the vintage-bike bug in the 90's I finally found my pristine white example at Salvation Army in 2000 priced at $37.50 iir. But, unbeknownst to me it was a "half-price Wednesday" event and I left the store with the bike for half that amount. Couldn't have been happier, as I was able to use the bike for a dozen or so training rides among fast company at a time when I was in the best shape of my life.

I recently discovered my front derailer had cracked, but I found a replacement in no time at all at the co-op. The bikes are pretty solid other than the front derailers, maybe the hub cones are a bit soft but generally survive IF the bearing tension adjustment is set to the loose side since they bind up as soon as the quick-release skewer compresses the axle.
Also, the rims "eat" brake pads, but this is just part of the charming character these bike's possess.

The white UO8 was the first road bike I ever really looked at and got to ride when my sister came home with a borrowed bike in 1969 or so.
I only owned Raleighs road bikes through my teens, but always admired the style of the U08.
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Old 06-13-20, 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by dddd View Post
A couple of more things.

I advise riders of cotter-crank models to, if possible, leave the entire bottom bracket and crankset alone!
The bearing tension can be adjusted with the arms in place. The right cup tends never to loosen on factory-assembled bb's, but can be secured (if ever needed) with a thin wrench (and hammer), again with both arms left in place.

The bearings can be lubricated from outside, using the applicator tube on a can of aerosol lithium grease. Even a periodic oil-can drip will keep the original bottom bracket in good form for many years of normal use.

I mention all this because removing the cotters without damage is a real challenge that usually requires experience and the application of heat in conjunction with a press of some kind. Replacement cotters found today will not hold up to much riding, they are way too soft!!! Original cotters in the exact right diameter would have to be searched for and carefully selected, all of which makes lubricating the bearings in situ a good idea for most.
So... can you overhaul the bottom bracket this way? Can you loosen things up enough to remove the bearings from both sides of the bottom bracket, and slip new ones in there, and lubricate it sufficiently? Have you ever tried this?
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Old 06-13-20, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
So... can you overhaul the bottom bracket this way? Can you loosen things up enough to remove the bearings from both sides of the bottom bracket, and slip new ones in there, and lubricate it sufficiently? Have you ever tried this?
No, leave everything in place and blast grease in through the generous clearances around the spindle.

The factory races are well-hardened and don't need extreme cleanliness to survive (unlike cartridge bearings).
Oil-can tune-ups were de-rigeur in the old days for millions of utilitarian bikes used in damp places from London to Belgium to Seattle, so the manufacturers had this sort of use in mind when they designed these bikes. The important thing is to not let the bearings go dry and then rust, and to not let the bike sit out in the rain where water might collect in the bottom bracket and settle amidst the balls (PX10's featured a threaded drain hole in the bottom bracket for this reason, but the less-expensive U0-series bikes got short-changed in this regard).
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Old 06-13-20, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by dddd View Post
No, leave everything in place and blast grease in through the generous clearances around the spindle....
Coolio. Thanks for the insight. I'm going to give this a try next time I come across a U0-8.
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Old 06-13-20, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
Coolio. Thanks for the insight. I'm going to give this a try next time I come across a U0-8.
One note about this, and especially as it applies to hubs.
This aerosol grease has solvent in it, and will make any but the very best bearings sound like a rock-crusher until the solvent leaves, usually within a few days.

Even when the assembly is really clean, that fraction of solvent makes modest-but-good bearings sound scary!
But the cool thing is how this fixes itself, like magic.
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Old 06-13-20, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by dddd View Post
...This aerosol grease has solvent in it, and will make any but the very best bearings sound like a rock-crusher until the solvent leaves, usually within a few days. Even when the assembly is really clean, that fraction of solvent makes modest-but-good bearings sound scary!
But the cool thing is how this fixes itself, like magic.
Not to take over the original posters intent on the post, but I guess I'll have to hunt up that exact product. I was going to use this stuff, assuming, possibly wrongly, that it was about the same stuff:
https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/pr...1-2-oz-aerosol

I've used this stuff, with modest success, on non-serviceable rat trap pedals, you know the type, they came on really cheap bicycles in the 70's and 80's. It flows fairly well, and then firms a bit when it's settled in. I haven't experienced a crunchiness, sound wise, with it.

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Old 06-13-20, 11:56 PM
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Yeah, perhaps I exaggerated the effect but the sound/feel when spinning the axle was alarming on my "Suzue Forged" hubs until a couple of days passed, then they were totally smooth and quiet again.

The noise wasn't noticeable at all while riding!

Oh, and yeah, that's the very same stuff.
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Old 06-14-20, 01:21 AM
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I recently overhauled the mixte version for a friend and she loves it! Its a truly wonderful ride. Granted, she wanted it single speed and all of the heavier steel bits and wheels were replaced with alloy. So itís very light. Frame, brakes, seatpost, headset and pedals are whatís original but itís mostly period appropriate and cranks, stem and Handlebars are French.



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Old 06-14-20, 12:48 PM
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I own a 70s Peugeot AO-8, which is pretty much the same bike as a UO8 sans a few details. I have an alloy wheelset with a hub gear and dynamo hub in front. All the other parts were replaced with alloy parts, apart from the Mafac brakes which work well with Kool Stop pads. I like these frames. They give a good ride for what they are, and look great too. The paint and decals on mine have held up nicely. Franglish Club Bike:

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Old 06-14-20, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Ged117 View Post
... Franglish Club Bike:
It that a bicycle club that concentrates on vintage French and English bicycles? Just curious.
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Old 06-14-20, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
It that a bicycle club that concentrates on vintage French and English bicycles? Just curious.
It's a reference to '40s, '50s, and '60s English club bicycles, which until derailleurs became reliable and popular were built with Sturmey Archer hub gears of varying ratios from utility wide range three and four speed hubs (like mine, a '53 four speed) to close ratio three speeds for time trialing and racing. The UK was full of these cycling clubs and bike builders in almost every town or village before cars became accessible and glamorous to more people and government policy encouraged road building for that purpose. Also, the frame is French so it's a Franglish bike! I hope that helps explain the phrase.
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Old 06-14-20, 05:13 PM
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As I have mentioned before, my UO-8 is a nicer ride than it has any right to be, given its original price point.
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Capo: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324
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Old 06-14-20, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Ged117 View Post
I own a 70s Peugeot AO-8, which is pretty much the same bike as a UO8 sans a few details. I have an alloy wheelset with a hub gear and dynamo hub in front. All the other parts were replaced with alloy parts, apart from the Mafac brakes which work well with Kool Stop pads. I like these frames. They give a good ride for what they are, and look great too. The paint and decals on mine have held up nicely. Franglish Club Bike:

Look, your carradice bag is nice but we need a better pic of the bike
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