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French Bikes:​​​​​​​ Is it just me?

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French Bikes:​​​​​​​ Is it just me?

Old 07-21-20, 08:23 PM
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Cycle Tourist
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French Bikes:​​​​​​​ Is it just me?

I bought a Peogeot UO-10. Actually a bike minus wheels and derailleurs and a half hearted attempt to make a (ugh) "fixie." It cost $50 and times being what they are, it seemed like a good idea at the time. I have given in to this weakness before. Two Pugs, three Moto's and a Stella, (que video tape), have passed by very resently. The Stella got to shed steel wheels and a ponderous cottered crank.
Not includng a teenage encounter with a Pug where the nearness of the threading to British intrigued me enough to try changing the treading with brute force. Once you start something like that it hard to stop halfway through. It worked but I needed to use adjustable cups on both sides.
Anyway, I'm a little wiser, (also weaker), and go with the flow on French bikes. What surprises me though is the number of them that have British threading to begin with. Maybe it's something about the this area but nearly all were British threaded. This UO-10 is definitely a 1980 model which, according to everything I've read by people way smarter than me, should be threaded either in French or possibly Swiss. I guess the fun comes in not knowing what your getting into 😜.
I stuck a couple of photos on the end:


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Old 07-21-20, 08:30 PM
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I have a weakness for French bikes and I wouldn't mind picking up a UO 10 like the one you are working on. The UO 10 had better parts than the UO 8 and 9 as it has alloy wheels, a cotterless crank, and decent parts throughout.
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Old 07-21-20, 08:48 PM
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Old 07-21-20, 08:55 PM
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I hate to be "That Guy", but it appears to me that the top tube of your frame may be damaged just behind the head tube. In the first picture it looks like paint damage on the underside. And, in the second picture the top tube appears to angle down in the same spot.

Though, I could be wrong.
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Old 07-22-20, 03:50 AM
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Ride it until it cracks!

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Old 07-22-20, 08:31 AM
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.
...I have straightened a couple of frames with mild damage like that. (If it is indeed a little bent.)
The fact that it's basic Carbolite tubing works to your advantage. But it's always an experiment to do so.

The setup is relatively straightforward. Affix a piece of steel plumbing pipe (that is small enough to fit through the head tube races) into a very large and well mounted bench vise.
Turn the frame upside down, slide it onto the plumbing pipe positioned in such a way that it allows you to put a scrap rear hub (or axle ...if you use an axle only it might bend a little) in the dropouts. Then take a lever length of 6-8 feet of 2x4 framing lumber, insert it so it goes on top of the rear hub, and the far end under the lip of your vise workbench. Then pry down until it looks straight.

Leave the head tube races in place or you will ovalize the head tube. Or install other, sacrificial races of steel, if your headset happens to be aluminum alloy.

After you get it to your liking, you need to string up the frame, and check out the frame's side to side alignment, but that usually remains constant. And someone ought to check the fork alignment, if you can.





It's kind of a project, but this one turned out OK.







If it does decide to fail at the bend sometime in the future, it will start as a small crack, which you can watch for. So not at risk of catastrophe to ride one repaired like this.
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Old 07-22-20, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by cb400bill View Post
I hate to be "That Guy", but it appears to me that the top tube of your frame may be damaged just behind the head tube. In the first picture it looks like paint damage on the underside. And, in the second picture the top tube appears to angle down in the same spot.

Though, I could be wrong.
One person's "damage" is another person's geometry change to "low trail"

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Old 07-22-20, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
One person's "damage" is another person's geometry change to "low trail"

😆
It definitely isnít just you,Cycle Tourist. I was hooked by a Peugeot 3-speed in the 80ís, and followed it up with a couple Gitanes.
Each of them had a soft, cushioned ride. I have a theory, though I donít know if itís true - longer chainstays coupled with steep head tube give a stable ride with fast enough steering.
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Old 07-22-20, 10:03 AM
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I prefer to use sophisticated precision equipment to straighten out my French frames, such as this (probable) Mercier 100 from a Clunker Challenge a few years back -




- and yes, I did make sure the top headset race was seated before applying pressure. Ovalized head tubes are a drag. The plumbing pipe lashed to a utility pole came from Lowe's and cost me more than the entire bike. I was shocked at how easy it was to straighten this bike - I grabbed the chainstays just in front of the rear dropouts and tugged firmly once and it was done.
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Old 07-22-20, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by cb400bill View Post
I hate to be "That Guy", but it appears to me that the top tube of your frame may be damaged just behind the head tube. In the first picture it looks like paint damage on the underside. And, in the second picture the top tube appears to angle down in the same spot.

Though, I could be wrong.
That's ok. I wouldn't expect anything less from the observant bunch around here. It is slightly deformed. How the forks escaped damage I'll never know but the damage is slight and I don't expect it to worsen.
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Old 07-22-20, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Cycle Tourist View Post
I bought a Peogeot UO-10. Actually a bike minus wheels and derailleurs and a half hearted attempt to make a (ugh) "fixie." It cost $50 and times being what they are, it seemed like a good idea at the time. I have given in to this weakness before. Two Pugs, three Moto's and a Stella, (que video tape), have passed by very resently. The Stella got to shed steel wheels and a ponderous cottered crank.
Not includng a teenage encounter with a Pug where the nearness of the threading to British intrigued me enough to try changing the treading with brute force. Once you start something like that it hard to stop halfway through. It worked but I needed to use adjustable cups on both sides.
Anyway, I'm a little wiser, (also weaker), and go with the flow on French bikes. What surprises me though is the number of them that have British threading to begin with. Maybe it's something about the this area but nearly all were British threaded. This UO-10 is definitely a 1980 model which, according to everything I've read by people way smarter than me, should be threaded either in French or possibly Swiss. I guess the fun comes in not knowing what your getting into 😜.
Are you sure it's ISO threaded? My 1980 PKN-10 looks identical to your bike, and it is definitely positively Swiss-threaded, as I discovered when I converted it to a triple crankset. My elder son is eternally grateful for the 34T granny ring when he pulls his boys in the trailer. Delightful bike, but always one size too tall and long for me, so I am glad he is putting it to good use.

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Old 07-22-20, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by John E View Post
Are you sure it's ISO threaded? My 1980 PKN-10 looks identical to your bike, and it is definitely positively Swiss-threaded, as I discovered when I converted it to a triple crankset. My elder son is eternally grateful for the 34T granny ring when he pulls his boys in the trailer. Delightful bike, but always one size too tall and long for me, so I am glad he is putting it to good use.

Nice bike and yes, I put a english cartridge bearing on it while rebuilding. I hated the way it looked and went back to the bearings you see pictured, (11 loose balls per side) back on. Everything went on easily. The cartridge screwed in a little further and encountered moderate resistance on the unused threads but it is definitely english. Seems to me I read somewhere that the single concentric groove on the bearing face was English, two were French and three, Swiss. I may have that wrong and should probably look it up before putting it in print.
With the long chainstays, these make dandy touring bikes. I like the quicker steering. Standing on hills they feel lighter than many slack angled touring bikes and the thicker tubes don't flex much even with a 200+lb. rider plus a full load.
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Old 07-22-20, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
I prefer to use sophisticated precision equipment to straighten out my French frames, such as this (probable) Mercier 100 from a Clunker Challenge a few years back -




- and yes, I did make sure the top headset race was seated before applying pressure. Ovalized head tubes are a drag. The plumbing pipe lashed to a utility pole came from Lowe's and cost me more than the entire bike. I was shocked at how easy it was to straighten this bike - I grabbed the chainstays just in front of the rear dropouts and tugged firmly once and it was done.
...nice vise. Well mounted.
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Old 07-22-20, 06:55 PM
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I love those little guys. Come on Pops, let's GO!
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Old 07-23-20, 10:33 AM
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FYI, here's my even intensive way of straightening a frame. Find a cut-off post in concrete, stick a solid stainless propeller shaft in it (these things DON'T bend), and then the headtube with the bearing races installed. Grab chainstays and pull.








This took 5 minutes to straighten - including setup. And that's only because I was going slow.

-Kurt
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