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Heartbreaks: What Happened to Your Old Bikes?

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Heartbreaks: What Happened to Your Old Bikes?

Old 05-29-21, 04:41 PM
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OlderNotWiser
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Heartbreaks: What Happened to Your Old Bikes?

The bikes that you took so much pride in, built to suit your style of riding, local terrain, disciplines and personal taste. Those that you did so many miles on that, somehow disappeared, you sold, lent that never came back or even forgot about that you really regret losing and wish that you could have back.
My first half decent road bike was (of course, being in the UK and aged 11) a Raleigh that I reworked & put through many trials and hazards too.
My second was a Harry Quinn that I put together with Campag hubs, Mavic rims, Roberts Comp. gears and a crank & brakeset that I remember not but were a result of much testing on my part.
Moved 300 miles away to work in London.
Received an envelope from home containing £20.00. ? sez I. 'Your father sold your bikes and this is the money that he got for them.'
I did not speak to him fo 6 months. I still feel the pain.
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Old 05-29-21, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by OlderNotWiser View Post
The bikes that you took so much pride in, built to suit your style of riding, local terrain, disciplines and personal taste. Those that you did so many miles on that, somehow disappeared, you sold, lent that never came back or even forgot about that you really regret losing and wish that you could have back.
My first half decent road bike was (of course, being in the UK and aged 11) a Raleigh that I reworked & put through many trials and hazards too.
My second was a Harry Quinn that I put together with Campag hubs, Mavic rims, Roberts Comp. gears and a crank & brakeset that I remember not but were a result of much testing on my part.
Moved 300 miles away to work in London.
Received an envelope from home containing £20.00. ? sez I. 'Your father sold your bikes and this is the money that he got for them.'
I did not speak to him fo 6 months. I still feel the pain.
Hindsight = 20/20, amazing when things can sit for a long time and then, poof, someone else decides "oh, these are just sitting around, I'll just get rid of them".
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Old 05-29-21, 05:28 PM
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And more to the point, I had all my early bikes stolen except one that I broke the RD hanger on so it got pitched at some point like the story above as I wasn't old or experienced enough to get it repaired or figure out a work around for it.

Mizutani Seraph, entry level, gotten new, stolen from out side the hobby shop.

Gitane 15 speed, gotten new, stolen from the park.

Schwinn Continental used, stolen from inside the grocery store.

Mizutani Super, their top of the line, heavy but nice, broke the DO as above.

Raliegh SC from a good friend, upgrade with parts from the upgraded Super above, Campy SP, Mafac 2000 brakes, Sugino Mighty Competition crank and MKS Unique road pedals. Stolen from inside the tavern, called the cops, showed up in minutes and we chased after the dirtbags that the officer knew and was after already. Went to a couple of houses across town with no luck.

Fast forward several years and I go to look at a motorcycle and hanging on the wall is the Raleigh, I check out the mc and go on my way. Call the cops, retrieve a police report and meetup with a county sheriff that has jurisdiction and has been watching this guy. We go confront the guy and look the bike over, the sheriff is on my side but the s/n number was not on the old out of limitation report. We go on our way, he circles back and the guy produces a receipt for a trade of a gun so we are sunk. He gets back to me later and tells me he got in trouble for pursuing it but was glad we did anyway.
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Old 05-29-21, 05:29 PM
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Bikes I still have. However, my panniers, and my seatbag containing all of my bike tools was sold at my parent's garage sale.

I am still pained that I 'gave away' my hand-built custom wheelset while on 'tour' in 1980. I taco'd my rear wheel by not paying attention and dropping 6-8" off the pavement edge, and rather than going down, I tried to recover... I got a ride to the nearest town with a bikeshop, and since I was 'funds-limited' as well as time-limited, I was compelled to trade my damaged wheelset for a set of generic shop cheapies that they had on hand to get me rest of the 200-miles home. My set was built up from Phil hubs, butted stainless spokes, and narrow double-wall clincher rims (Mavic or Wolber or ???, I can't remember).


.
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Old 05-29-21, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Cougrrcj View Post
Bikes I still have. However, my panniers, and my seatbag containing all of my bike tools was sold at my parent's garage sale.

I am still pained that I 'gave away' my hand-built custom wheelset while on 'tour' in 1980. I taco'd my rear wheel by not paying attention and dropping 6-8" off the pavement edge, and rather than going down, I tried to recover... I got a ride to the nearest town with a bikeshop, and since I was 'funds-limited' as well as time-limited, I was compelled to trade my damaged wheelset for a set of generic shop cheapies that they had on hand to get me rest of the 200-miles home. My set was built up from Phil hubs, butted stainless spokes, and narrow double-wall clincher rims (Mavic or Wolber or ???, I can't remember).


.
H**Y CRAP!

That's flippin brutal.
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Old 05-29-21, 05:51 PM
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I’ve sold, traded, or given away more bikes than any reasonable person would, and I have absolutely no regrets. Life is much too short (and there are an infinite number of bikes out there that I haven’t yet owned).
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Old 05-29-21, 06:04 PM
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Quattro Assi Team 2000... I did not have it for more than 20 hours. I told myself “It’ll be fine in the backyard for one night, I can make space in the morning.” Come back 9 hours later after a lovely bicycle dream to a missing Team 2000. I should have known better — inner city do nots #1, any item you want to keep stays inside. I have looked narrow and far, but cannot find even a hint of its new home.

Vicini Tour de France... traded for a bicycle better fit for my collection. However, easily the best Italian I have rode. A part of me sorely regrets the loss of the Vicini. I have yet to find any Italian bike the same.
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Old 05-29-21, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
I’ve sold, traded, or given away more bikes than any reasonable person would, and I have absolutely no regrets. Life is much too short (and there are an infinite number of bikes out there that I haven’t yet owned).


The ability to incorporate that facet into this hobby? is one of the great things about it, I've given away a few, worked on a few to get them going so they didn't and have plans for some more to be given away as several have been given to me and I have gotten many very good deals that can be paid forward and passed on.

Life is short and I think mostly that I lament my own shortcomings for them getting away.
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Old 05-29-21, 06:41 PM
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I have the downtubes of a couple bike that I broke - a Ciocc and a Peugeot... nice mementos.
A few others were stolen.
A few others I threw away.
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Old 05-29-21, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Cougrrcj View Post
Bikes I still have. However, my panniers, and my seatbag containing all of my bike tools was sold at my parent's garage sale.

I am still pained that I 'gave away' my hand-built custom wheelset while on 'tour' in 1980. I taco'd my rear wheel by not paying attention and dropping 6-8" off the pavement edge, and rather than going down, I tried to recover... I got a ride to the nearest town with a bikeshop, and since I was 'funds-limited' as well as time-limited, I was compelled to trade my damaged wheelset for a set of generic shop cheapies that they had on hand to get me rest of the 200-miles home. My set was built up from Phil hubs, butted stainless spokes, and narrow double-wall clincher rims (Mavic or Wolber or ???, I can't remember).
.
Ouch, for sure karma had to come back and bite that bike shop guy in that butt for taking advantage of you in that situation.

My first Mtb was a GT Tequesta with which I had many adventures in many places including tooling around spots in the Middle East and Asia when I took it on the ship with me in the Navy. When we moved from our house in Memphis in 2008, wife and kids had gone ahead, movers gone and it was just me and the dog and a few leftover items to pack in the car and head out. I kept finding more and more stuff in closets, etc and before long the car was jam packed to the roof when I found that GT frame in the attic. Absolutely no way to squeeze it in, so I left it in the attic. I still have the fork though, so I must have found somewhere to jimmy that in the car. Second MtB, a Gary Fisher, was stolen off my front porch. My third MTB, Trek 8000 was stolen out of my driveway. I’ve yet to buy a 4th.
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Old 05-29-21, 07:17 PM
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In the 1970s when some of my friends were taking up cycling I gave away several bikes and lots of parts, including my really slick long-axle Sturmey-Archer AW 3-speed hub with Cyclo 14-16-18-20 cogset. That was one of the most fun-to-ride bicycle transmissions I have ever owned. I tucked a the 3-speed trigger under the left brake lever to accommodate double shifts with the standard right side downtube-mounted shift lever, a classic Simplex unit. The redundancies where the ranges met made it a 10-speed instead of a 12-speed, but with nicely-spaced ratios from 39 to 99 gear-inches on 26" wheels.

I have broken three frames while riding: my first Capo Modell Campagnolo, a 1960 model, my 1971 Nishiki Competition (bottom bracket shell), and my 1973 Peugeot UO-8 (chainstay between the tire and chainring clearance dimples).

I gave my 1980 Peugeot PKN-10, one of the best all-rounders I have ever owned, to my elder son because it was one size too tall and long for me.
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Old 05-29-21, 07:34 PM
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Back in the day I had a strange idea that it would be fun to have a tandem mtb, so I collected some parts and adapted some things and, voila, the Twin Bomber was born. Turned out I hated the way it rode and it seemed that the stoker was always sandbagging, so I gave it away to a friend who lived at the end of a long dirt road. His wife hated riding it too, so with my blessing, he gave it away. It's probably rusting away behind a garage somewhere in Louisa County now.

My first "real" road bike was a plain-gauge lugged 1971 Olmo. I upgraded it with new Japanese components, but its ride was still unimpressive. One day I saw a really nice used whitewater kayak in the local bike shop, which was also the local outdoor outfitter. Pretty soon I traded the Olmo for the kayak, and a new hobby ensued. I often wonder where the Olmo ended up but I don't want it back.
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Old 05-29-21, 07:35 PM
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Stolen

when ebay became a thing, I expected one would show up at some point... not yet!
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Old 05-29-21, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by merziac View Post
Hindsight = 20/20, amazing when things can sit for a long time and then, poof, someone else decides "oh, these are just sitting around, I'll just get rid of them".
It wasn't even a long time. Just a matter of a few months... Ggrrrr...Rage...Resentment... Aaaggh!!! I mean, 20 quid!! Arrrghhh again! If it has happened to you too, I feel your pain. 🥃🍷🥃🍷🥃🍷
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Old 05-29-21, 07:55 PM
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mine had a happy ending. I'd saved up for a long time for my Miyata 912 I bought new in junior high school. I held on to it through the years even though i stopped cycling. my father in law really needed a bike at one point and he had been great to us. I reconfigured it with a long cage and hill gears for him and away it went. he faded out of our family and I assumed i'd never see it again, and missed it terribly as I got back into cycling. many years later after being stored outside, chained to posts, chipped paint, and rusty components it came back to me. I'm nearly done fixing it back up and it will be better than new.
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Old 05-29-21, 08:04 PM
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Only regretted selling one but got it back the next day when the buyer decided he bought the wrong type of bike. He failed to mention he had dropped it on the RD. I tool it out for a ride the next day and when I downshifted into the largest cog on the rear the chain went past the cog and into the spokes. You know the rest....... cut half way through every other spoke on the drive side of the wheel. I got it home, straightened out the RD readjusted and ordered new spokes. With some of my recent acquisitions requiring space I don't have it's going back on the market tomorrow with different wheels. This time "all sales are final".
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Old 05-29-21, 08:17 PM
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Bianchi Randonneur...so stupid of me in my youth. Hand stitched the leather handlebar covers. If only I knew...sold when I bought the Crestdale...won’t make that mistake again. Cresty the Cannondale has been with me since 1988.
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Old 05-29-21, 08:19 PM
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I don't regret any that I've sold, traded, or given away.

I only regret the ones that were taken from me; the rod brake Raleigh 3-speed with the fully enclosed chain that my mother sent to the dump 3 weeks after I went away to school and the Falcon and Pogliaghi that were stolen from inside my house when I was too poor to cobble together another bike for almost a year.

O.K. I sorta miss the Schwinn Hollywood, given to me by a friend, that I rode for the year that I was saving for another nice bike. That bike taught me that, no matter how humble, a bicycle is a wonderful thing.
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Old 05-29-21, 08:47 PM
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Nicer bikes were not available in my area where I grew up. But reading a book on bicycles in the school library made me realize there were better options than the heavy welded frames, one piece cranks and 26 inch steel wheeled bikes I had available locally. I don't know how I came about buying a Takara Deluxe Touring when I was about 16 or 17, but it was the only bike with a lugged frame, three piece crank, and alloy wheels I had ever seen and the best bike I could find in my area. That Takara bike boom bike made me love cycling, I was able to do all the maintenance on it and I kept it inside. When I got married and had kids, the time that I had to ride became less and with a small home and growing family I began keeping it outside. That lead to a rapid decline in the condition and I eventually took it to the dump where I saw someone immediately pull it off the pile. The heartbreak was self inflicted.

After I got back in shape a few years ago, I decided to start riding again and found that I still loved it but missed that old Japanese bike boom ride. I know I'll never see it again but I've since bought a couple of Takara survivors that I will take out for a spin when I want to feel like a teenager again.
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Old 05-29-21, 09:15 PM
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I try to avoid getting too attached to stuff, including bikes. Mostly I'm attached to the memories of the experiences on those bikes. As long as the brain continues functioning more or less according to specs, I'll still have those memories.

I kinda miss my 1976 Motobecane Mirage, purchased new when I was fresh out of boot camp, no transportation to and from base. That was the start of my bicycle commuting, which I've done on and off for decades. I sold it several years ago after serious injuries from a car wreck and I thought I'd never ride again. Took about 15 years but I finally recovered enough to resume riding. But I've moved on to other bikes. I still have the memories of many miles, including some club century rides around southern California and Baja in the 1970s-'80s.

My current bikes are all "better," but it would be fun to take that Motobecane hi-ten frame out for a leisurely spin once in awhile. By now I'd probably tart it up a bit with better components, although everything on it worked well enough for years.
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Old 05-29-21, 09:17 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by obrentharris View Post
I don't regret any that I've sold, traded, or given away.

I only regret the ones that were taken from me; the rod brake Raleigh 3-speed with the fully enclosed chain that my mother sent to the dump 3 weeks after I went away to school and the Falcon and Pogliaghi that were stolen from inside my house when I was too poor to cobble together another bike for almost a year.

O.K. I sorta miss the Schwinn Hollywood, given to me by a friend, that I rode for the year that I was saving for another nice bike. That bike taught me that, no matter how humble, a bicycle is a wonderful thing.
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Sure glad you let me have the Moto, now if I could just get going on it.

I did get curious about the weight of it and stripped it all the way down to weigh it, ohauled the HS and BB so maybe that's a start.

I would have had a hard time ifin I was you and where it came from, but it is still part of the story that anybody I tell about it will hear.

I think the history has as much to do with it as the bike, even if it is or isn't something special but maybe more so if it is.

When they are and are our size that can be hard to find, they are definitely special to me so....

Cold dead hands, etc.
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Old 05-30-21, 05:12 AM
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OK, I'll play. As a teen in Schenectady, NY, my source of income was mowing neighborhood lawns (for CHEAP). Fortunately my expenses were nil so I did actually pile it up enough to purchase a brand new campus green Schwinn Varsity. Loved it. I had no idea how primative and heavy it was. Rode that for years then parked it when "then comes Thomas in the baby carriage". Moved it a few times but it stayed in the back of the garage, generally holding up other junk.

A decade or so later we rented a vacation home in Oak Bluffs on MV. There were bicycles under a tarp in the yard. I dug out a flat bar 10 speed and got it functional. Enjoyed that. When I got home I told my wife (ready now? Know-it-all Engineer here) "I can't see myself every riding drop bars again". Never even considered a flat bar conversion. The green Varsity went up and into the dumpster at the transfer station. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Now I have 8 drop bar bikes. Just rode the Fuji 150 miles over 4 days of driving and cycling.
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Old 05-30-21, 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by obrentharris View Post
.........no matter how humble, a bicycle is a wonderful thing.
I never really thought about it but so true. My cousin is a sign painter, when I find just the right medium I'm having him letter that on something to hang over my work bench. Thank you.
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Old 05-30-21, 07:27 AM
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I rode a Schwinn Varsity in high school and for a while after I graduated. It was root beer brown and in like new condition when I bought it (about 1969 or 70) . Not long after I graduated I started some pretty serious rides with my best friend who had a Continental and realized the Varsity would no longer work for me. I gave it to a friend who wanted a bike to ride around as transportation. The next time I saw the bike it had butterfly handlebars on it and it was pretty beat up. He loved the bike though so no heartbreak there.
Like merziac said , for me , the history of a bike that fits and rides well is important as far as attachment goes. I have a 1973 Windsor Pro that has a great history. It was sold to a mechanic at Wally’s Bikes in San Luis Obispo. An older guy took the bike in and told him that he was not going to be around for long and had no one to leave the bike to. He had raced it quite a bit in the seventies and eighties and wanted to find a good home for it. The mechanic bought it and rode the first Eroica California on it and said he could never ride it again as it was too tall. I bought it and after checking it out and adjusting it for my preferences , did about a 35 mile ride and felt the “spirit” of the bike. I had never had that happen with a bike and not since. That bike once again did the Eroica Cal. In 2017. The old retired racer is still with that bike and although it is worn and shows it age , it rides like the wind! It would be hard to let go of even though I have higher end bikes in my collection.

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Old 05-30-21, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Kabuki12 View Post
I rode a Schwinn Varsity in high school and for a while after I graduated. It was root beer brown and in like new condition when I bought it (about 1969 or 70) . Not long after I graduated I started some pretty serious rides with my best friend who had a Continental and realized the Varsity would no longer work for me. I gave it to a friend who wanted a bike to ride around as transportation. The next time I saw the bike it had butterfly handlebars on it and it was pretty beat up. He loved the bike though so no heartbreak there.
Like merziac said , for me , the history of a bike that fits and rides well is important as far as attachment goes. I have a 1972 Windsor Pro that has a great history. It was sold to a mechanic at Wally’s Bikes in San Luis Obispo. An older guy took the bike in and told him that he was not going to be around for long and had no one to leave the bike to. He had raced it quite a bit in the seventies and eighties and wanted to find a good home for it. The mechanic bought it and rode the first Eroica California on it and said he could never ride it again as it was too tall. I bought it and after checking it out and adjusting it for my preferences , did about a 35 mile ride and felt the “spirit” of the bike. I had never had that happen with a bike and not since. That bike once again did the Eroica Cal. In 2017. The old retired racer is still with that bike and although it is worn and shows it age , it rides like the wind! It would be hard to let go of even though I have higher end bikes in my collection.
Likewise, I had earned enough money from cutting lawns at $2-$4 a pop that I bought my first Fuji in early 1974. All I could afford was ~$150 so I ended up with the first of two all-steel 23" Fuji Special Tourers. The first was stolen from my high school bike rack - the first bike ever stolen from the school! I bought the identical replacement (same size, color, year, model) to replace the stolen one. My parent's Homeowners insurance covered the loss since it was essentially new (three months old), a police report was filed, and it had been locked. F9B18529 was stolen, F9B18546 was its replacement.

Two years later, I sold the Special Tourer to a buddy's older sister because after riding my college roommate's Viscount Aerospace Pro, I decided that I needed a better bike. That was when I went back to my LBS and bought my Fuji S-10S that carried me as my only ride for the next 30+ years -- until I joined BF.net.
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