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1985 Fuji Series IV - need a plan for my first real tourer

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1985 Fuji Series IV - need a plan for my first real tourer

Old 06-20-20, 04:22 PM
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niliraga 
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Bikes: 1972 Raleigh Competition, 1972 Bob Jackson, 1970 Cilo Sprint-X, 1989 Marinoni Special, 1985 Fuji Touring Series IV

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1985 Fuji Series IV - need a plan for my first real tourer

After a year or three casually looking out for a classic 80s tourer in my size, and getting close to both a 25" Cresta and a 25" Voyageur SP, the gods finally took pity on me, and via Craigslist sent me on a 4 hour drive to get well-seasoned 24" Fuji Series IV. It seems to be fairly well preserved, with plenty of the original build and fitted with rear & front lowrider racks, along with a set of 5 "sage green" Cannondale panniers from the period. I had no idea the TS4 had mid-fork mounts!

I've never ridden one of these before, nor any of its peers, so all of this is quite new and unfamiliar for me. I've not yet done anything to it beyond resetting saddle height, and it checked out well enough that I took it for a quick 6 miles to get the feel for it. Things I have noticed immediately:

-- Even while unladen, a noticeably comfortable ride even with someone else's cockpit. whoa, this is nice!
-- Once at cruising speeds, very stable and directionally ... stiff? super easy for me to relax as it really wants to go straight ahead, no messing about with any swerving or darting, no sir!
-- Canti brakes (my first) are stronger than period calipers, for sure - but in my unscientific comparison, not noticeably any advantage over dual-pivots? (Pads are Scott Mathauser and dont seem age-hardened)
-- My low-rider racks seem to be mounted funny - angled back, for some reason. maybe an attempt to move loads closer to steerer axis? should I level them?
-- Fenders are basic SKS jobbies, by the looks of it. Front one seems to have been cut back at the nose... now why on earth would that help?
-- That Mountech RD ... i read the horror stories, so I'm thinking that's got to go. I have both 1st & 2nd gen Cyclone GT as alternatives, or are there reasons to fit something else, or leave well alone?
-- Tires seem fine, but I'm itching to move to 700 for more tire options (and the extra 4mm headroom) - I need to learn about / go find more adjustable cantis, unless someone knows the stock TS4 brakes will handle 700?
-- Biopace rings replaced the stock at some point... I know half-step + granny was the thing back then, and why would one want to revert to that?

What else am I missing? The idea is to get something that could do distance with gear, but nothing as dramatic as full off-grid adventuring.

Pics to follow...

Last edited by niliraga; 06-20-20 at 04:27 PM.
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Old 06-20-20, 04:24 PM
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niliraga 
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biopace!

Mathauser
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Old 06-20-20, 11:36 PM
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Velo Mule
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Nice bike. How do you like the grab-on handle bar grips? I hated them back in the day. Almost every bike we sold would get them. I will also admit that they do cushion the hands, except when they are a few decades old. The bike will look great with black cloth tape.

It could be a tricky deal to go to 700C rims. But if calipers can accommodate them then I'd get some new rims and double butted stainless spokes and enjoy four more mm of room to fit tires and/or fenders.

That sure does look like a hacked off SKS fender. Maybe something happened to the end of it so they cut it back, but they could have rounded it off to make it look better.

Keep posting as you update it.
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Old 06-21-20, 05:15 AM
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cycleheimer
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Bikes: '14 Insight 2, '95 Trek 720 Multi-Track, '94 Cannondale M600; '92 Raleigh Dash Max; '86 Panasonic DX 5000, '81 Fuji S12S, '81 Fuji Royale; '78 Bridgestone Diamond Touring, '78 Motobecane Grand Touring, plus many more!

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Nice! Those cushion grips are comfy, BTW. You can wrap new bar tape over them, retaining the cushion for added comfort. My Fuji is a '91. They weren't made in Japan then and came with a uni-crown fork, but were equipped with 700c wheels and Deore. Yea, tire selection is limited for 27" wheels. Puncture resistant tire liners might give you some added protection for the tires that are available.
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