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Mini-project: 70's Gazelle Grand Tourist 3-speed

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Mini-project: 70's Gazelle Grand Tourist 3-speed

Old 11-30-20, 05:55 PM
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Mini-project: 70's Gazelle Grand Tourist 3-speed

This is the bike that started my adventures in C&V bikes back in the summer of 2016 and since I bought a bunch of stuff today for it I thought I would post a mini-project thread.

The original Grand Tourist is from 1971. This one is a mid- to late 70's model Gazelle Grand Tourist. The bike itself is nothing special with its gas-pipe tubing, Sturmey Archer 3-speed AB drum brake hub that used to be extremely common around here in the Netherlands and still are to this day. But it's gold, classy and uses a ton of chrome and stainless steel parts that have stood the test of time and still look good today. There was also a Grand Tourist Race that used Reynolds 531 tubing for the frame but I never got my hands on one nor did I try.

This is how I bought it. I picked it up on the other side of town and drove it back home on a summer day and was unpleasantly surprised by the braking power at first. Drum brakes might be some of my favourite brakes and offer low maintenance, but nearly 50 year old brakes need to be replaced from time to time.




Grand Tourist as purchased

It's rim brake sister model, that used the same frame, was called the Gazelle Tour de France and was the basis for the retro-inspired Gazelle van Stael (stael being an old way of spelling "staal", meaning steel in Dutch).

Gazelle Tour de France

I have done a lot of dumb things with it and it taught me a lot of what to do... and what not to do. Some examples:
  • DIY two-cog IGH with a derailleur. 46T x 16/19T in the back worked fine but "upgrading" the rear to a 16/28T meant the very first hill I tried to scale popped off the cog retainer ring. I had to walk back home.
  • Drop bar handlebar + long-reach levers + drum brakes = bad times. These are made for 4-finger levers... with short pull. I could hardly stop the bike. Good thing I also installed cross-levers that did work.
  • Inverse brake levers. Looks good, brakes meh.
  • Giant front rack
  • Modifying a modern LED light into a vintage light for the looks. I'm still kind of proud of how that turned out.
But I haven't used the bike in ages and my tiny shed is prime real estate for other bikes. So at the very least I can turn it into something nice before selling it off to someone who likes it.
I don't expect to make a profit on this, the Dutch second-hand market is flooded with high-quality bikes that have probably seen more owners than can be counted.

But I can finish this the way I have always wanted and give it a makeover the way I like it. Meaning, a complete overhaul, probably new wheels and modern upgrades that fit the style of the bike.
In this case I will be using a pair of Sturmey Archer hubs, an X-FDD dynohub and a RX-RD5 5-speed hub with 70mm drum brakes.

I opted for a pair of Ryde Zac 2000 rims in black with cream 40-622 Schwalbe Little Big Ben tyres because when I did a quick mockup the silver on gold looked a bit bland. And I think it looks really nice on the Pashley Guv'Nor. Not sure yet if I will use the same blue cables again or if I will stick with black. Gold, black and white is probably enough colours in one bike to stay coherent and blue will only muddle things up.

The parts are ordered and the weather is turning dark and dreary here but at least I can work build wheels inside and work on the bike outside with a couple of layers.


The last photo I have of the bike


Quick colour mockup with black rims and cream tyres


Quick colour mockup with silver rims and cream tyres



Aggressive stance with the hybrid gearing and flipped handlebars. Still makes it too small for me.

Last edited by JaccoW; 11-30-20 at 06:00 PM.
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Old 11-30-20, 06:08 PM
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Here's an image of the 1975 Grand Tourist.

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Old 12-01-20, 07:38 AM
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ere is my Gazelle Primeur from 85, repaint and installed a pair of Sturmey Archer hubs, an X-FDD dynohub and a RX-RD5 5-speed hub with 70mm drum brakes. This makes for a great all weather market bike.





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Old 12-01-20, 08:00 AM
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Low-end or not, that Grand Tourist has panache. I realize it may not be perfectly set up, but it's a great looker (especially with the won't-fit-in-the-train-station-Porteur rack up front).

Just be glad it has drums instead of rollers

-Kurt
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Old 12-01-20, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Low-end or not, that Grand Tourist has panache. I realize it may not be perfectly set up, but it's a great looker (especially with the won't-fit-in-the-train-station-Porteur rack up front).

Just be glad it has drums instead of rollers
Still having trouble with the Shimano Roller brakes?

Yeah a friend of mine rode it last year in its 3-speed configuration when he didn't have a bike. He told me he got a ton of compliments on it by other people.
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Old 12-01-20, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by JaccoW View Post
Still having trouble with the Shimano Roller brakes?

Yeah a friend of mine rode it last year in its 3-speed configuration when he didn't have a bike. He told me he got a ton of compliments on it by other people.
You know, I forgot to update that thread in Mechanics. I ordered a pair of brand-new 3000 series brakes (great deal too). The one on the Topeka Metro Bike works quite well, the one that went on the Boise bike - no matter how I fiddle with it - gives about 75% of the performance. Neither come close to the 6000 series on the JUMP 5.0, and they just feel wrong. You know it's metal on metal.

Interesting. Would have thought a machine like that would get overlooked in the NL amongst the rest of similar lugged steel.

-Kurt
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Old 12-01-20, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Interesting. Would have thought a machine like that would get overlooked in the NL amongst the rest of similar lugged steel.
In a sense it does but most older lugged steel bikes here are of the black 'omafiets' variety. More in-your-face colours like cherry red, poison green or gold still stand out. Especially if it is pristine or of a weird variety.
I came across a 'kruisframe' or 'pastor's bike' a few weeks ago when going out for fancy bread and I really wanted to strike up a conversation with the owner but alas, it was gone after I came out of the shop.
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Old 12-02-20, 02:40 AM
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Originally Posted by bwilli88 View Post
ere is my Gazelle Primeur from 85, repaint and installed a pair of Sturmey Archer hubs, an X-FDD dynohub and a RX-RD5 5-speed hub with 70mm drum brakes. This makes for a great all weather market bike.




Still a great looking bike in green.

Ever thought of replacing the bolts with Gazelle branded ones and re-adding the head badge?
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Old 12-02-20, 05:17 AM
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Originally Posted by JaccoW View Post
Still a great looking bike in green.

Ever thought of replacing the bolts with Gazelle branded ones and re-adding the head badge?
Thanks. Nope on replacing the bolts and have the head badge in the pouch that is on it now. It will be put on later.
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Old 12-02-20, 08:54 AM
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Parts for tonight.


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Old 12-02-20, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by JaccoW View Post
In a sense it does but most older lugged steel bikes here are of the black 'omafiets' variety. More in-your-face colours like cherry red, poison green or gold still stand out. Especially if it is pristine or of a weird variety.
I came across a 'kruisframe' or 'pastor's bike' a few weeks ago when going out for fancy bread and I really wanted to strike up a conversation with the owner but alas, it was gone after I came out of the shop.
This alone made me search X frames all over again - leading to this beauty:
https://vintagebicycle.wordpress.com...documentation/

-Kurt
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Old 12-02-20, 06:49 PM
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Well this turned out to be a short night of wheelbuilding...

I had all the parts but it turns out the Ryde Zac 2000 rim I ordered has spoke holes designed for 14G spokes (3.30mm nipple size)... which is smaller than the (backwardsly labeled) 13G (3.45mm nipple size) spoke- and spoke nipples I had.
In short, the very first spoke I popped on didn't fit into the hole.

Live and learn, I contacted the webshop for an exchange. Luckily there are the Sapim reduction spoke nipples that enable a 13G spoke to fit into a 14G hole.

It did give me an excuse to try all the bits and bolts I ordered. The rear hub looks downright menacing with all these add-ons.

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Old 12-03-20, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by JaccoW View Post
The rear hub looks downright menacing with all these add-ons.
That's what happens when you let a Sturmey-Archer hub dream of becoming a TIE fighter.

-Kurt
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Old 12-03-20, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
That's what happens when you let a Sturmey-Archer hub dream of becoming a TIE fighter.

-Kurt
At least it has better shielding than a Tie-figther.
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Old 12-03-20, 08:01 PM
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Do they still make an Omafiets?
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Old 12-04-20, 02:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Wulf View Post
Do they still make an Omafiets?
Gazelle you mean? They do!

There is the Gazelle Classic which is the normal 3-speed Omafiets in modern colours and rollerbrakes, the evergreen more upscale Tour Populair with rod operated drum brakes and in a sense the Van Stael, which is a mixte with rim brakes. Everything else is hydroformed aluminum with sloping top tubes.

The classic Oma singlespeed with a coaster brake is so common that there is hardly any need for new ones like that but I think the closest is the Veloretti Robin, a sleek aluminum framed bike.
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Old 12-06-20, 03:20 PM
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One wheel done!



Second wheel will come in the next couple of days when I grab some extra spokes. Seems like I miscalculated by 2mm which means I cannot reach the nipples anymore by the time I reach the second half of the build. Still, the rear is done and it's time to try it in the frame tomorrow and get a feel for the new setup.

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Old 12-07-20, 06:01 AM
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It's a bit bit compared to the 28mm in the front, it definitely needs more black (saddle, cables) and the fenders need some work to fit properly on the rear side of the tyre. But all in all, I like it.

Oh and I will be losing the rack. Whatever they used to make it shiny, the chrome is starting to peel off in a lot of places and it just looks bad.

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Old 12-07-20, 01:16 PM
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Brake cable connected. Shift cable tomorrow when I can see again. The sun sets at 16:30 before I am done working so I only have 30 mins during my lunch break. Then again, one of the pros of working from home.


In all it's wide handlebar glory!
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Old 12-08-20, 07:12 AM
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Some pictures today of the bike outside as it is now. New spokes for the front wheel and some new fender stays are ordered. That way I can move the wheel a bit further back and gaing some extra tyre clearance.
The shifter cable length requires a bit more experimenting as it was never designed for the cables coming from this direction. It's a better solution than the original plan however where the cable ran down past the bottom bracket and needed to be looped around the chainstay to slide into the fulcrum lever.
Plus it's in line with how older Sturmey Archer hubs were cabled.

And finally a picture of the Basil Portland front rack as well. You can clearly see the chrome peeling off on most parts. Not a good look if I want to sell this bike in the near future and especially for a rack I bought in 2017 without any actual use outside. But from the reviews on their own website it seems like I am not the only one.
@alexnagui





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Old 12-08-20, 09:28 AM
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Thanks for the feedback, Jacco. The quality of the rack is indeed a bit questionable. I gave up on the Basil rack because of the size and ended up ordering the Pelago one in M size. Still haven't installed it and also waiting for some other bits I ordered for extra upgrades. How much clearance do you have between the rear wheel and the fender right now? Looks like a very tight fit from here, new stays should help though. Are those Weinmann fenders by the way?
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Old 12-08-20, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by alexnagui View Post
Thanks for the feedback, Jacco. The quality of the rack is indeed a bit questionable. I gave up on the Basil rack because of the size and ended up ordering the Pelago one in M size. Still haven't installed it and also waiting for some other bits I ordered for extra upgrades. How much clearance do you have between the rear wheel and the fender right now? Looks like a very tight fit from here, new stays should help though. Are those Weinmann fenders by the way?
The Pelago should serve you well, I am still very happy with mine. What bike are you installing it on? Perhaps I will spot it in the city some time.

I'm not sure what brand the fenders are. They are stainless steel but no brand marking as far as I can tell thought they seem to be quite common on Gazelle bicycles from that time. Perhaps it was a design made for them?

The clearance is barely enough to roll the bike as it is now. The crimped stays in the front mean there is about 5-8mm each way around the tyre. Perhaps I will try to flatten and widen the fenders a bit as they are not that much wider than the tyres right now.
But like you said, it should be a lot better with longer stays. Some of the bolts on the inside need to be shortened too (especially the rear light) and a couple of holes will be moved and others plugged with pop-rivets.

I did look for narrower tyres in the 32-622 range but it looks like most suppliers don't make them in cream anymore? Anyhow, the Little Big Bens (now sold as the regular Big Ben) are liked a lot by people who use them, though they are a little heavy. And at 37mm mounted they seem to fit just fine.
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Old 12-09-20, 10:40 AM
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The rack is going on Germi. At the same time, I am also planning to change some things and put lights on the bike ans so on, gonna post a pic once everything is done.

Those Schwalbe Big Ben tires look great indeed maybe I should try them one day.

Flattening and widening those fenders sounds like pita to me, but if you manage to do that let me know. I am thinking now that some wooden fenders would perhaps complement the look of the bike. But I know that you don't want to invest money in the bike you just want to sell.
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Old 12-12-20, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by alexnagui View Post
The rack is going on Germi. At the same time, I am also planning to change some things and put lights on the bike ans so on, gonna post a pic once everything is done.

Those Schwalbe Big Ben tires look great indeed maybe I should try them one day.

Flattening and widening those fenders sounds like pita to me, but if you manage to do that let me know. I am thinking now that some wooden fenders would perhaps complement the look of the bike. But I know that you don't want to invest money in the bike you just want to sell.
That's a pretty nice bike! Most of the 60's "sport" bikes I have seen online are cool lightweight rides. Are those butted tubes or straight gauge?
Wooden fenders look cool but what I don't like about them is the lack of functional coverage. All they do is prevent a straight line going down your back. I guess that's why I don't care about those modern straight Curana fenders. Though I do like the material used.

In better news related to this bike though;
I finally finished the front wheel!

I ran into some trouble with the spokes seemingly not fitting to the point that I even tried lacing it up 2-cross. Even though the 278mm x 3-cross should have worked.


2-cross attempt, way too long.

In the end though it turned out there were 3 spokes in my first two sides that were 268 instead of 278mm long, A whole centimeter too short so it wasn't that weird that I couldn't connect the third lacing.
So I rode across town for some gifts and picked up some new spokes from a bike shop and tried again.

It worked though, and I now have a 70mm drum brake + dynamo hub that I will be fitting into the bike tomorrow. With the fairly heavy tyre included it's a little over 3 Kg (6.6 lbs) but that's not a surprise. At least it's not the 4.5 kg (10 lbs) of the tandem rear.
Got some new fender stays too so I will probably try to retrofit the current daruma bolts that mount it to the fork and use them to add another attachment point on the fender itself.

For now, just a few pics:


Completed wheel in the trueing tool.


Glamour shot of the finished wheel
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Old 12-13-20, 08:07 AM
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JaccoW
Overdoing projects
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Rotterdam, former republic of the Netherlands
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Bikes: Batavus Randonneur GL, Gazelle Orange Excellent, Gazelle Super Licht, Gazelle Grand Tourist, Gazelle Lausanne, Gazelle Tandem, Koga-Miyata SilverAce, Koga-Miyata WorldTraveller

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Here she is in her current glory. The front wheel has been installed, the front fender adjusted with different fittings, dynamo installed with a cable running through the fork.
There is still work to be done on the cabling to the rear and some of the current parts need a trip to a bike shop for the right size such as the front reaction arm clamp.
And those grips look cool, but they are a pain to install.

I have looked around for 32mm tyres in cream since these 38mm ones are bordering on too big for the frame but they don't seem to exist.

All in all though I think it's a good mix of components and colours.
More fine-tuning next week.


Drive side shot.


Drum-side shot


Front view


New holes for the fender daruma bolts.
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