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Clunker 100 Challenge COVID edition #6

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Clunker 100 Challenge COVID edition #6

Old 08-12-20, 11:14 AM
  #26  
ryansu 
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Having purchased the Univega before I knew there was a Clunker Challenge I have hamstrung myself a bit by spending almost 25% of my budget having a spoke replaced at the LBS and then I used another 25% on nice Ergon grips that I purchased about a year ago and had not used, as the original Ritchey grips were giving me some hand numbness. Had I known there was a challenge I would have approached things differently but with the purchase price, LBS cost and Ergons I am on the hook for about $88 and then I took a saddle about the parts bin for a $5 charge for a total of $93.. I will not be mounting a new cassette and chain until after the challenge so I will deal with the racy 11-19 7 speed cassette and hope my recent 40 pound weight loss will allow me to get up hills. They don't call it a challenge for nothing Now I need to start riding!


Bike as found

parts bin Saddle - the original was not my friend

tiny cassette

lovely Ergon grips

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Old 08-12-20, 11:56 AM
  #27  
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BAH!

I've found these threads entertaining in the past, but never considered entry because I've never anticipated picking up any bike in the sub $100 range. Around here that's a rusty huffy/free spirit/concord 26" wheeled single speed with a coaster brake and steel rims. Then a friend dropped off a Schwinn racer deluxe 3 speed from 1966 for $10.

Green grips, cushy "Made in Taiwan" mattress saddle. Original stainless fenders, rubber block pedals, and an old reliable Sturmey Archer AW hub.

On a bicycle where the only aluminum parts are the brake levers, calipers, and the cargo rack, the steel tries its best to make up for the weight savings by adding oxygen atoms.

I was going to try to use the wheels on an English 3 speed and made the rookie mistake of conflating Schwinn 26" wheels with the more prevalent English 26" size. Oh well, I took it for a ride when I figured out how to bring the shine back to the paint. It was fun, once I learned how to adjust the indicator cable.
I decided I'd leave it mostly as is, but I'd restore the full Schwinn-ness first. The BB bearings were bad, as were the bearings and cones on the front hub. The brake cables were movable, but barely. The brake pads were hard, though the front pads looked unused. I bought new 5/32"x9 caged bearings ($2.25/pair), a cheap galvanized mountain brake cable set ($7.99), a pair of practically unused Schwinn front hub cones from the bike co op ($0.25, really), a bag of 7/32" balls for the front hub ($6.99), a new 1/8" chain ($6.00), a pair of Kenda K23 gumwall tires for ~$40 on clearance, and silver sparkly grips off of eBay ($4.79, w/o shipping). I made an offer on a Schwinn approved saddle and clamp from a later era for $10 on eBay, which was accepted. Those black and white two tone 'S' saddles are kind of scarce.

A rusty Mesinger saddle.

I removed the vinyl cover carefully along with the foam padding, and dunked the steel frame and clamp into a bucket of Evaporust. Once I had bare steel again, I painted it with some spray primer and matte black paint I had on hand.
I serviced the AW hub (just dry), replaced the cones and balls in the front hub and studied the forums to figure out how cones are meant to hold their adjustment without lock nuts (the Ashtabula forged fork does that part), and replaced the BB bearings. Then I rubbed the frame with a clay bar to pull off oxidized paint, polished with a polishing compound, treated rusty spots on the frame with Ospho, cleaned it one last time then waxed it. I used Evaporust for the small steel bits, and aluminum foil with sprayed simple green on the handlebars, rims, and fenders. Everything besides the spokes and nipples were either sprayed with Fluid Film or polished with automotive chrome polish to deter future rusting. I flushed the original cable housings with WD-40 to reuse them, since the old cables were 1.8mm, while the new cables were 1.6mm. I swapped the original brake blocks for a set of used Kool Stop eagle claw 2's from my touring bike, recently replaced because they're just too thick for the setup. I figured they're practically worthless since I somehow bent the threaded studs. They barely fit, but they work!
I Put the pieces back together, sized and installed the chain, and took him for a spin!

Presenting Arnold D Luxe

These shells never seem to stay clean...

Sparkly grips, polished gear selector and Weinmann levers.

Stabilized saddle, pivot points lubed 😬.

I've always appreciated the resiliency of a good chrome plate. I've recently gained an appreciation for all aluminum polish. 😁

After a quick ride nearby with the kids, and a longer "time trial" (the wife said "You better be back before 9!"), I decided that the non-serviceable original block pedals with a bent right pedal spindle and loose blocks won't do, so I bought a pair of Wald rat trap pedals from the co-op for $2.50 and cleaned them up. I learned that there's not much you can do to improve the look of zinc-plated steel!

Out for a coffee run, the rack has been polished and reattached. Swapped the block pedals with rolling rubber blocks for a pair of Wald rat trap pedals dug out of the Co-Op's used 1/2" pedal bin. Added $2.50 to the project.

By my accounting, I did this for $87.27 in material costs. It's fun to ride! According to my Strava, I have around 60% of the distance traveled already. But! But! I completed this before the challenge was announced! Oh well, guess I'll just ride my shiny 'new' bike then. 😉

I'm looking forward to the updates here.
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Old 08-13-20, 09:18 AM
  #28  
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The donor bike has been a mixed blessing. So far its biggest gift has been tires, though I am undecided on which wheels to use. The ones I initially thought to use are more period correct, high-flange Normandy Sports (marked "Schwinn-Approved!") laced to Araya 27s, but then I would have to factor in some cost on those, whereas these Maillard/Weinmann 27s would be free. Hmmm. Then I pulled the tires and perhaps this is my answer -



- I had never before actually encountered duct tape as a rim strip. I remind myself, well, this IS the South, but this kinda feels like a paradox. Our rule here is, if it doesn't move and it's supposed to, use WD-40, and if it moves and it isn't supposed to, use duct tape. But this is duct tape used on something that is supposed to move. My brain hurts. Anyway, I think I may just gently trim up the tape so it doesn't crowd the tire bead (or hang out over the brake surface) and relube the hub and roll with it, because nothing says clunker like duct tape.

I had thought I would use the seat post from the donor, but before doing that I took one last trawl through the various boxes of parts and found these -


- a steel 26.4 mm seat post thrown in when I bought some parts of a mid-70s PR-10L and a Cane Creek seatpost shim I KNEW I had somewhere. And here it is. And while it IS meant to convert a 25.4 mm to a 26.0 mm, the shim itself measures at .37 mm, which means it adds .74 mm thickness when wrapped around the 26.4 post, which when properly greased will work nicely in my freshly honed 27.2 seat tube. So that's settled, especially since I have a saddle clamp and a saddle to complete the process.

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Old 08-15-20, 12:57 PM
  #29  
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First ride today a modest 7.5 KM - I had about 15 miles on the bike in early August but I am starting from this week for challenge mileage. I like my parts bin saddle much more than the stock one the bike was wearing when I got it.

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Old 08-15-20, 02:58 PM
  #30  
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Assembled!

I couldn’t stand all the ragged transitions from the rattle-can blue to the tired chrome, so I masked off the stays and fork tips to where the paint had originally stopped and used some old Testor’s model paint to make it neat. I couldn’t help myself, I touched up a bunch of other spots while I was at it. Then I used their gold metal-flake paint to edge those transitions. It’s wabi-sabi and it’ll do for now.

The Sugino VP crankset and bottom bracket were harvested from the donor bike without drama - turns out the fixed cup was literally finger-tight and came out with minimal effort. My problem was the donor wheels. I dismantled and lubed them and was rewarded by smooth operation on pit-free cones and cups. But then I forgot to lube the spoke tips where they met the nipples, and managed to break one. Nothing in the parts bin was long enough, so I set them aside.

I wound up pulling the tires and tubes and transferring them over to the wheels that came on the Mercier I rode in an earlier challenge. I paid $9.99 for that complete bike, which included a fresh set of Panaracer Paselas that now grace my Puch. Bike Junkie math involving net from parting out bikes says $9.99 bike = $10 used (very good quality) tires, so free. At any rate, I wound up repacking those bearings and getting much better results. The wheels are mismatched - a Shimano high-flange q/r front hub laced to an Araya 27-in rim and a Normandy Sport q/r high-flange rear laced to an Ambrosio 27-in rim. The mis-matched theme continued when I unearthed an SR SP-100 left pedal and mated it with a MKS Unique right - because they came from the box of scavenged thrown-out pedals AND they had straight spindles. Again, no cost to me when acquired, so free. Score!

I’m not entirely satisfied with the front cable hanger, but it was what I could lay my hands on. Only later, after everything was assembled, did I find a headset hanger with an integral barrel adjuster AND a quick-release. Maybe I’ll re-do things to incorporate that. The real delight of the day, though, was discovering in a long-forgotten small parts drawer a rear brake cable stop adjuster harvested from a long-dead Raleigh Grand Prix. I actually cheered about that. The brakes went on okay, and once I tightened up a loose pivot on the rear they worked reasonably well.
The derailleurs came off the Motobecane Grand Touring that was my first Clunker Challenge bike in 2016. I paid $45 for that one and after the Challenge sold the Pivo bars for $35 and the frame for the same amount. I’ll assign a value of $5 to a used and scarred V-GT Luxe rear, one set of plastic-tipped SunTour dt power shifters, and a stray SunTour AR. Shift cables were scavenged long ago from a dead dump-found MTB so again, free.

I was looking at really crappy chains from the bottom of the parts bin when I stumbled onto enough bits of Sachs 9-speed chain to make one good one. Call it $5 for one bike’s worth of used chain.
So in a fit of misplaced energy and poorly prioritized time, I assembled it into rideability this morning and tested it just long enough to know it works and I think I can do 100 km with it before I desperately need to upgrade parts.

Still to be added from the stash - some used clips and straps and a bottle cage. Maybe tonight, maybe tomorrow morning. And now, without further ado, here are the pix!



Looks presentable from a distance!

Post challenge I think I’ll find a vintage crankset.

Huge brake reach there - but not so much clearance at the chain stays!

The SR rando bars are filling in for the missing, very cool GB rando cars it came stock with.

Glamour shot of my raggedy Centurion/Vetta saddle from a bike rescued from a scrapyard and the recycled shim.

The non-drive side view.

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Old 08-15-20, 03:23 PM
  #31  
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rustystrings61 I believe Mismatched is this challenges' middle name. Seriously your bike looks great hope it rides well too. Nicely cobbled.
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Old 08-15-20, 05:08 PM
  #32  
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Tires on and pedals

Cleaned frame and wheels, new tires on and new pedals on. Next grips and seat recover...$20 total so far!
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Old 08-15-20, 06:05 PM
  #33  
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So, a quick review of the rules doesn't disqualify a bicycle just because it's been gathering cobwebs in my shed for who knows how many years now, biding for it's "phoenix moment"? I'm thinking hard....
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Old 08-15-20, 06:16 PM
  #34  
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Starting August 11: $100...to purchase a bicycle...
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Old 08-15-20, 06:28 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
Starting August 11: $100...to purchase a bicycle...
But there’s also -

“While anyone who wishes to participate is encouraged to follow the spirit of the game and go out and get a new bicycle, an untouched project waiting in the shed is ok, too.”

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Old 08-16-20, 08:18 AM
  #36  
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Bottom bracket brain failure

I got up early this morning so that I could add a bottle cage and get in some miles, planning on riding, at least initially, the old standby of laps around my neighborhood. It's a good loop of 1.08 miles with a snappy little descent and a good moderate slogging climb on the way back around. I set off on the first lap and immediately thought, "hmm, low saddle. And why is my chainring wobbling?" So I pulled in after the first mile and found the bottom bracket was loose. Ugh. Off came the left crank, out came the lockring wrench and a big honking crescent for the Sugino adjustable cup. I tweaked it and thought, "why is this so touchy" and reassembled everything and set off for another lap. And almost immediately I came rolling back in with a loose bottom bracket. I repeated the earlier process, thinking I had just misadjusted things. Then I went out on a longer loop, over to the neighborhood across the highway, where the Gran Sport glided wonderfully down the long fast hill and through the delightful curve at the bottom before slogging my way up the hill past the pond. And the bottom bracket was loose again.

I thought about it. I removed the left crank and could see the adjustable cup and lockring were right where I'd left them. So I pulled the drive side crank and lo, the fixed cup was loose. But why, I wondered. Then I thought about how touchy the BB adjustment had been, removed both cranks and pulled the adjustable cup and found I'd installed the caged bearings the wrong way around in the cups. Ooops. I had to retrieve a couple of bearings that fell out of their retainers - another oops - but I got it all back together correctly and adjusted somewhat and took it around for another lap. Almost but not quite right, so I pulled back in and pulled the right crank and broke out the fixed cup wrench that has always been a whisker too small and a big nasty mill file and opened the tool out enough for it to actually engage. Then I used a rubber mallet to help the tool turn that cup in tighter than I could manage by hand. Then I dialed in the adjustable cup and lockring one more time, and I really, really hope I finally have all of that right!

On the other hand - it tracks straight when I ride it no-hands. It feels really solid and capable on fast descents. It feels like it will be comfortable once I finish adjusting everything - and even more so after 100 km when I can start spending some money for a nicer saddle and maybe different handlebars and stem. We'll see. The brakes work, and I think the front will quiet down as the pads wear in again. I strapped on my $6.99 Crivit saddlebag I snapped up at Lidl a little while ago so I could carry a wrench to adjust my saddle and a multi-tool, and for a $7 saddlebag it's not bad. (The matching handlebar bag makes no sense to me, not being designed for access while on the bike, but that's another rant for another day.). I think some Paselas would do wonders, as they weigh about half what these Bell Streetsters do - but decent 27-in tires during a pandemic appear to be a problem right now, so one does what one must do!

Anyway, Strava says I wound up with 5.39 miles, which is 8.67 km. 91.33 km to go!


The tranquility of the little pond in Druid Hills was a nice break from my nagging bottom bracket problems.

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Old 08-16-20, 08:35 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
So, a quick review of the rules doesn't disqualify a bicycle just because it's been gathering cobwebs in my shed for who knows how many years now, biding for it's "phoenix moment"? I'm thinking hard....
Phoenix on in. Welcome.
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Old 08-16-20, 07:35 PM
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In my best mock Monty Python, "And now, for something completely similar....".

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Old 08-17-20, 06:11 AM
  #39  
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Progress, more miles, and there's a light ...

My time to go ride these days is early in the morning, before work - and frequently before the sun comes up. I had thought I would put some fresh batteries into a 20-year-old Serfas headlamp that I uncovered while looking for something else, but the halogen bulb had burned out. In the course of testing it, I had remembered how nice the mount interface is. Then I remembered the pink LED mini-flashlight that came to me with the donor Schwinn World Sport. That had been badly zip-tied to the bars and on the verge of falling off - but it worked well and gave off a good light. But how to mount that light onto the Serfas bar mount? Then I remembered my big bag o' junk cycle computers and harnesses. A few minutes later I had snipped the wires and cut the side rails off a handlebar mount, drilled a hole in it for a mounting bolt, and assembled it onto the clamp. A little digging in the junk bag turned up the bolts I needed, and a moment later I had a free working headlamp. While I was at it, I fished out my favorite cheesy bicycle bell and repaired it. The bell, for which I paid the princely sum of $1, had been sitting with a broken clamp band for at least a decade because I couldn't bear to toss it. Initially I thought I would adapt another computer harness, but in the end I decided to just drill some holes and run a zip-tie to complete the repair. And it works, and I have my favorite cheesy decor item back on a bike again!



The lamp works better than I hoped, but with one nagging problem - it rattles really loudly. I suspect it's the battery pack, and I bet if I put a ring of cut inner tube around that, it will be much quieter. I'll know tomorrow.

Today's second shakedown ride went much better than yesterday's. The bottom bracket appears to be fixed and I have dialed in the front derailleur adjustment. The left pedal spindle is definitely bent, but not badly, and I need to raise the saddle maybe 1 cm more, but other than that, it's come together nicely. The long, long wheelbase and the big heavy 27-in tires combine to give it a stately gliding quality going down the road, and no-hands riding is a breeze. I settled for riding the neighborhood loop again, but perhaps tomorrow I can venture further afield. Here it is, the end of summer and my kids about to start back to school and I have yet to ride from the house to Hodges and back. Maybe tomorrow.

18.97 km down.

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Old 08-17-20, 09:40 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
In my best mock Monty Python, "And now, for something completely similar....".
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mhl2av1bmrE
I just saw this pop in my feed. I want my 5 worth of royalties!!!
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Old 08-17-20, 11:15 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Narhay View Post
I just saw this pop in my feed. I want my 5 worth of royalties!!!
The timing of their video seems a bit fishy... doesn't it? Do you have a brother-in-law in the lawyering business?
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Old 08-17-20, 11:29 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
The timing of their video seems a bit fishy... doesn't it? Do you have a brother-in-law in the lawyering business?
I will write a strongly worded letter to the Queen about flagrant competition violations like those Dura Ace pedals and expensive saddle.
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Old 08-17-20, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Narhay View Post
I will write a strongly worded letter to the Queen about flagrant competition violations like those Dura Ace pedals and expensive saddle.

Hey Narhay... for the integrity and sanctity that is the "Clunker 100 Challenge", and not to sidetrack too much away from the bicycles/riding/complaining/wrenching/more complaining/life examination that is inherent to it's process, I'm starting a sub-branch post about the GCN challenge, because I would like to go down a rabbit hole and comment on the youtube comments. Please join in, if you so choose, and know it's done with the upmost respect to the original "The Challenge". Your's humbly, as always, "uncle uncle".
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Old 08-17-20, 01:44 PM
  #44  
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Also totally rookie mistake paying full go for the bike and not leaving any left over for say Tires or Tubes!!! Sounds like she will appreciate her "super bike" that much more now. Chapeau to her for doing 100 hilly miles - in one ride did she not know about the 100 km option?

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Old 08-17-20, 01:48 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by hazetguy View Post
just looked on the local CL for a clunker. even the clunkiest of the clunky was at or above the allowed budget. might have to sit this one out. again.
check a local co-op and show them this thread. They might hook you up.
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Old 08-17-20, 01:57 PM
  #46  
Narhay
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Originally Posted by ryansu View Post
Also totally rookie mistake paying full go for the bike and not leaving any left over for say Tires or Tubes!!! Sounds like she will appreciate her "super bike" that much more now. Chapeau to her for doing 100 hilly miles - in one ride did she not know about the 100 km option?
I have to say I am impressed. Buys a bike from what appears to be some shade tree mechanic operation, wipes it down and 100 miles later shes done. The spirit of the CC100.

I think next year none of this silly reasonable timelines and cushy distances. 24 hours to buy a bike and go for an imperial century.

Last edited by Narhay; 08-17-20 at 02:00 PM.
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Old 08-18-20, 05:54 AM
  #47  
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The good news - today's ride put me at 33.57 km, so I am now officially more than 1/3 of the way through the challenge. The bad news - I had to settle for riding neighborhood loops again. I hope to get out on the open road this weekend, perhaps. And it's good to be rolling along through the miles on this part of the challenge, because yesterday, on a whim, I drove home by a different route that took me past a thrift shop that, for once, had bikes parked out front. So yeah, I turned the truck around and went back. I'm not normally an aluminum-framed disc-braked mountain bike kinda guy, but the tag said $40 - and when I showed the manager that the rear brake wasn't working, he cut it to $20. So maybe, possibly, if time permits, I might try for a second clunker with this 2007-ish Giant Yukon. We'll see.

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Old 08-18-20, 06:32 AM
  #48  
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1982 Trek 412

I'd forgotten that I had a 1982 Trek 412 in the shed that I picked up a year ago. It's missing the headbadge and the tubing sticker but the serial number makes it a 410 series bike with an Ishiwata 022 main triangle and hi tensile fork and rear triangle.

I paid $50 for the bike and it actually came with decent stuff so keeping the cost under $100 won't be hard. This will motivate me to fix it up.
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Old 08-18-20, 06:56 AM
  #49  
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I have lots of project bikes that would be perfect for the Challenge. I've even started work on them for past Challenges, but never finished them.

As much as I would like to participate this year, work and house renovation projects have chewed up any available time and money.

I'll happily give two of the more viable candidates to any of you folks, if you will actually do something with them.

They're both late 80's / early 90's hybrid bikes.

The first is a Girvin Offroad Climber:




Has the original Suntour XCD shifters, brake levers, derailleurs, and front hub. New brake pads, new grips, new brake and derailleur cables - all parts bin stuff. Rear hub died a messy death when the gear cluster seceded. Cranks and chainring are early 90's Shimano Deore. Brakes are Shimano Exage. Takes 700C wheels. No longer has the original suspension stem, since sent off to a better home with member clubman.



The second bike is a Raleigh Eclipse:







Has BioPace chaintings and middle of the line Shimano Derailleurs. Bars are not original and have GripShifts on them. Also takes 700C wheels, neither of which I have.

I'm looking to GIVE these away. If you want either (or both) of the bikes, please send me a PM.

NOTE: I'm not interested in shipping these, you'll need to pick them up. I live in the Capital District of New York, and work in Albany. I'll be happy to meet up somewhere and hand them off while commuting, etc..
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Old 08-18-20, 08:43 AM
  #50  
ryansu 
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Hi the quarter pole with this mornings ride so we are chugging along like the little engine that could. Due to the extremely narrow gear range on the Univega anything over about a 4%grade is beyond it and me, but that is why its a challenge right?
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