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That Arizona Sachs...

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That Arizona Sachs...

Old 05-13-21, 01:38 PM
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gravelinmygears 
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That Arizona Sachs...

I know the fork is wrong. How hard would it be to find the right one?
https://phoenix.craigslist.org/nph/b...312453110.html

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Old 05-13-21, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by gravelinmygears View Post
I know the fork is wrong. How hard would it be to find the right one?
https://phoenix.craigslist.org/nph/b...312453110.html

Maybe not hard at all, reach out to RS, beg and plead as necessary, step WAY up and get on the several years waiting list, if you're very lucky.

Otherwise likely nil.

And ifn this was mine and despite the fact that somebody tried really hard to make a good red and WHITE colorway here, I would scrap the white components and get some creative red on the fork to help minimize the sore thumb effect.

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Old 05-13-21, 01:58 PM
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...Richard Sachs has a particular crown and tang motif that he used, depending on the era of construction. So the chances you'll find exactly that are virtually zero. Here is a photo of the one on my bike, which was one of the ways it was identifiable as legit, since it had been repainted somewhere along the way. YOu can probably get something that looks OK on there, and paint it to match, but if it will bother you that it is not exact, , better to not buy this one.

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Old 05-13-21, 05:24 PM
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Finding "the" right fork, the original fork, is essentially impossible unless the seller still has it.

Having another builder recreate a fork is possible, but Sachs is a little bit notorious for not wanting to give out details of his geometry, so it's going to be a little bit of a lottery to get the right rake (that Sachs intended). You could almost certainly get a bike that rides good enough or even great, but it might not have that last 0.1% that makes it super-special.
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Old 05-13-21, 07:00 PM
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...I think (but am not 100% certain) that by the time the early 80's rolled around, Mr Sachs was ordering his fork crowns custom cast to his own design.
The one I showed in the photo was an early 70's bike, with a fork crown available at the time from frame component suppliers.


But mostly, time moves along, and I'm not 100% certain even Richard Sachs would be able to replicate that original fork. He moved and downsized his shop at least once since 1981, so it's not like he kept all the spares. But he is very approachable, over on his online form E-Richie, so you can ask him yourself.
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Old 05-13-21, 07:59 PM
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That Arizona Sachs is nothing special. Looks nice if you like the way it was repainted, but otherwise, you can do much better.
Am always suspicious of bikes/frames being sold without the original fork. Begs the question:why?
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Old 05-13-21, 08:19 PM
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From the seller:
”this frame was made for the Sachs racing team. It was never used because a drop out was broken. That's the condition I bought it in. I bought it at a swap meet at the Olympic velodrome from the 1984 LA Olympics. There was no fork included. The frame was repaired and I built this bike for my wife. The fork is just a generic one.”

I’m no longer interested.
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Old 05-14-21, 07:10 AM
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If you really want a Richard Sachs, post a WTB with your size and preferred date range. They are out there, many of them owned by older gents who ride less and less each year.
Had a Facetime call the other day with a guy who got my contact info online, had a Sachs he had inherited and wanted to get a valuation because he's not a bike guy.
Probably too much of a project for you (it would need a complete restoration, media blast and respray, probably some framework & a number of components) but bottom line is...they are out there.
Just put yourself at the intersection of Wanna Buy and Wanna Sell, and be patient.
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Old 05-14-21, 07:27 AM
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FWIW a Richard Sachs fork sold on eBay a few weeks ago for $400 or so. Or you can buy an RS fork crown and have someone (why not Richard?) put together a fork for you. I've been looking for a 55-56cm Ricahrd Sachs for a year or so. Those I see listed seem to fall into a couple of categories: 1) pristine with a price to go with it, 2) rough "barn/estate find" with an inflated price, 3) used up, worn out with many miles in need of restoration, often still with a big price tag.
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Old 05-14-21, 08:42 AM
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Thanks, everyone. Reading rccardr's post helped me realize there are other bikes I'd rather pursue. Or, actually, it helped me realize I haven't drilled down to what I specifically want. I like these old bikes from small builders but I think I need to spend more time learning about the specifics so I can figure out what I'm looking for. Thanks!
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Old 05-14-21, 09:21 AM
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...the whole world of American custom frame builders is an interesting avenue to explore. Right now there's a thread in the valuations forum on a Wizard, which is not something you'd expect to discover on a local buy, but there it is. I probably have 15 or 20 of them out in the garage, all of which came up local to me on the CL ads, at one time in the past 20 years or so. And it is true that there are people just like me who are getting up there, age wise, who ride less now, and are going to be downsizing so their wife doesn't have to deal with the collection of bikes.

There is a list over on the CR pages of American custom frame builders which is a good place to start. The names on there, and your frame size, give you as much information as you need to winnow through the CL listings. But even there, they miss a few names. You can sort of tell these bikes are different from average by some of the frame details. And there are some that are less well regarded, because the builder did not turn out a lot of frames before he got a better paying career. Still, it's an interesting pastime, and many of them that get listed locally, like stuff by Bill Davidson, or maybe the FUSO frames, fly under the radar as a local listing in terms of price, because they don't have a lot of brand name recognition.

Both of my Davidson bikes sold here on CL for $600- $800. So based on my own experience here near the SF Bay Area, local shopping is your bes bet, but prepare to spend some time at it.
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Old 05-14-21, 09:25 AM
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Here's one that is obscure in marque, but a very nice bicycle.


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Old 05-14-21, 09:27 AM
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Here in Albuquerque there's not much chance of stumbling across the custom stuff. Like you said, some rider may shed one every now and then but I've had to travel or ship bikes that I enjoy. I just need patience and I'm lacking there.

Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
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...the whole world of American custom frame builders is an interesting avenue to explore. Right now there's a thread in the valuations forum on a Wizard, which is not something you'd expect to discover on a local buy, but there it is. I probably have 15 or 20 of them out in the garage, all of which came up local to me on the CL ads, at one time in the past 20 years or so. And it is true that there are people just like me who are getting up there, age wise, who ride less now, and are going to be downsizing so their wife doesn't have to deal with the collection of bikes.

There is a list over on the CR pages of American custom frame builders which is a good place to start. The names on there, and your frame size, give you as much information as you need to winnow through the CL listings. But even there, they miss a few names. You can sort of tell these bikes are different from average by some of the frame details. And there are some that are less well regarded, because the builder did not turn out a lot of frames before he got a better paying career. Still, it's an interesting pastime, and many of them that get listed locally, like stuff by Bill Davidson, or maybe the FUSO frames, fly under the radar as a local listing in terms of price, because they don't have a lot of brand name recognition.

Both of my Davidson bikes sold here on CL for $600- $800. So based on my own experience here near the SF Bay Area, local shopping is your bes bet, but prepare to spend some time at it.
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Old 05-14-21, 09:29 AM
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That Smolenksi is gorgeous. Love that blue.
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Old 05-14-21, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by gravelinmygears View Post
Here in Albuquerque there's not much chance of stumbling across the custom stuff. Like you said, some rider may shed one every now and then but I've had to travel or ship bikes that I enjoy. I just need patience and I'm lacking there.
There was a guy last year in Nob hill that was selling a Sachs..A few years ago I picked up a Cinelli Centurion with a hodge-podge mix of components..Mavic derailleurs,Shimano 600 wheelset..a real mix..Good deals are out there in Albuquerque..John
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Old 05-14-21, 10:08 AM
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Wow! Good to know! I really appreciate you chiming in.
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Old 05-14-21, 10:47 AM
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15? years ago Mr. Sachs noted he loved making forks.
at the time I think $400.
I am sure the tariff is more today, but if you are interesting, he might be persuaded to build one.
Appeal to his sense of steel.

The "colorways" of this red and white bike are... well, they are.
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Old 05-14-21, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by gravelinmygears View Post
That Smolenksi is gorgeous. Love that blue.
Randy Smolenski was the manager of a bike store in Grand Rapids Michigan. Like many American framebuilders, he didn't do it full time but rather had another job that payed the bills. That means his output was probably fairly modest. I gave him his 1st brazing lesson in 1981. He painted his own frames too. He passed away about 3 years ago. One of my framebuilding class students bought some of his equipment from his widow last year. Even though we lived only 100 miles apart, I don't know much more about him except he had a devoted following in middle Michigan.
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Old 05-14-21, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug Fattic View Post
Randy Smolenski was the manager of a bike store in Grand Rapids Michigan. Like many American framebuilders, he didn't do it full time but rather had another job that payed the bills. That means his output was probably fairly modest. I gave him his 1st brazing lesson in 1981. He painted his own frames too. He passed away about 3 years ago. One of my framebuilding class students bought some of his equipment from his widow last year. Even though we lived only 100 miles apart, I don't know much more about him except he had a devoted following in middle Michigan.
...thank you, I did not know much about him other than the Michigan location, and not many bikes built and around. This was his version of fastback stays, which I find wildly impressive. Not really shot in, in the traditional sense, but very fluid and elegant. A lot of these guys are dying off or dead, because of the time that has passed since the early days. Not sure if anyone has written the history of American frame building in book length, but that would be something to read. And to look at the pictures.

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Old 05-14-21, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by gravelinmygears View Post
I know the fork is wrong. How hard would it be to find the right one?
https://phoenix.craigslist.org/nph/b...312453110.html

Just curious to know how much they were asking?

I hear you on American customs - someday I might just get a Jeff Bock
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Old 05-14-21, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
...thank you, I did not know much about him other than the Michigan location, and not many bikes built and around. This was his version of fastback stays, which I find wildly impressive. Not really shot in, in the traditional sense, but very fluid and elegant. A lot of these guys are dying off or dead, because of the time that has passed since the early days. Not sure if anyone has written the history of American frame building in book length, but that would be something to read. And to look at the pictures.
Unfortunately the history of modern American framebuilders has not been very well documented and will soon be lost. Brian Baylis and I used to sit together at events and talk about this need. Of course he passed away about 5 years ago. I asked Peter Weigle a few years back if he had ever written down his experiences of learning in England and he said no.

An example of lost history is where I learned at Ellis Briggs in Shipley, West Yorkshire. 2 brothers-in-law started a bicycle business that included building and painting frames in the 1930's. What impressed me when I was there (and why I was happy to go there) was how clever their specially designed tooling was to make frames. This was way beyond what was typical in the UK. Who was the creative designer is not now known. One of the founders, Tom Briggs, died way to young and his son took over and the partnership dissolved. The grandsons that eventually became owners were too young when their grandfather died to know much about its origins. The present owner who came to take one of my classes and I realized how little information was left.
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Old 05-14-21, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
I hear you on American customs - someday I might just get a Jeff Bock
I wouldn't wait. People are starting to figure out he belongs in the best of the best group of builders and painters. His list will soon be longer than you will want to wait. Jeff is someone that hasn't gone out of his way to promote himself and his high quality work takes longer and means a lower volume output. Those factors reduce his name recognition. One should not confuse how famous a builder is compared to the quality of work he is able to accomplish.
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Old 05-14-21, 01:48 PM
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The seller was down to $1500 but it looks the posting is gone. Sold, probably.

Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
Just curious to know how much they were asking?

I hear you on American customs - someday I might just get a Jeff Bock
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