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1973-1/2 Motobecane Grand Jubile

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1973-1/2 Motobecane Grand Jubile

Old 09-06-21, 04:19 PM
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droppedandlost 
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1973-1/2 Motobecane Grand Jubile

1973-1/2 Motobecane Grand Jubile


Member @Dylansbob gave me a great deal on this early Grand Jubile that predates the 74 catalog. It didn't look real pretty but it was undamaged and nearly completely original. My best guess (with the help of some BF members) is that there was a transition period before all the spec components were available for the new model and dealers used what they had. The parts list was a combo of the Grand Touring and Grand Record from 73. The GR got moved up and the GJ was inserted between the two. The GR was 531 main tubes and became 531 throughout. The GJ took over the 531 main tube position in the lineup, so it's the GR frame from before 74. Some other clues to the age: Campy dropouts, script font, chrome crown and foil head badge. The wheels, hubs, RD and brakes are not original, but given the grey-ness of time period I'm not too concerned. The brakes are the correct model but about a decade early. Also fitted a Huret Jubilee RD because it seemed appropriate. I would love to find Weinmann/Normandy wheelset to finish it.




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Old 09-06-21, 04:52 PM
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Oooh, that's a purdy one!
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Old 09-06-21, 06:00 PM
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the head emblem shows it to be transitional as well

for 1974 it would have been the round one affixed with with two fasteners

what was the OEM saddle? me recollection is T&B 80

first one of this sort have run across

can recall going to look at them at me local for the nominal 1974 launch

wanted one but am squarely betwixt sizes; the 58 a bit large and the 54 a bit small

wonderful she has found a fine home with you!


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Old 09-06-21, 06:29 PM
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Ya it looks pretty now. Neat Weinmann 999s. I shoulda swapped the Jubile derailleurs on one of my GJ flips. The buyers had no idea what they were getting. They shift a 5 speed with an old Sachs chain so smoothly.
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Old 09-06-21, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
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what was the OEM saddle? me recollection is T&B 80

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Hard to say for sure. The catalog is non-specific below the Grand Record (Brooks Pro). This one has an Ideale 80, which shows up in the catalog in '76.
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Old 09-07-21, 07:11 AM
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That is a beautiful bike! I'm new to the forum but I had to make an account for this. I recently picked up a very similar GJ and I've been trying to figure out the year. I bought it from the original owner but he couldn't remember the year! He thought it was a 73 or 74.

The Campy dropouts are what confuse me. The 74 catalog says they should be Huret? It does have the original Jubile drivetrain though. And unlike yours, mine has the round headtube badge that's riveted on. The crankset looks a little different too, but the owner said he might have changed that.
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Old 09-07-21, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by droppedandlost View Post
Hard to say for sure. The catalog is non-specific below the Grand Record (Brooks Pro). This one has an Ideale 80, which shows up in the catalog in '76.
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thanks very much for the response!

T&B is shorthand for Tron et Berthet, the maker of BIM, Ideale, NOREX, etc. products


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Old 09-07-21, 08:27 PM
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Your bike looks like it pre-dates the '74 I bought new in '74 for these reasons: my '74 had a different fork crown (not chrome); block, not script font on the down tube; and round metal headtube badge. Mine also had Campy rear dropouts. It was silver with red panels. I dont remember the brand of saddle I had but it had a suede texture to it.

The red with black panel (like yours) '75 I have is my favorite to ride out of all seven of my '75 and earlier Motos (2 GJ, 4 GR, 1 LC). I have swapped out the original Huret Jubilee derailleur ensemble for a Huret DuoPar RD, unknown Sun Tour FD and Sun Tour bar ends. I also swapped out the Stronglight 49 crank for a Stronglight 99 with a 36 tooth small sprocket. The rear sprocket is a 6 gear 14-30, just barely outside the capacity of the Jubilee RD.

Great riding bike, as anyone who owns one will attest to.

Last edited by motogeek; 09-07-21 at 08:33 PM.
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Old 09-07-21, 10:23 PM
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Nice. Too bad there isn't more historical background on the Ben Lawee era of Motobecane imports to the US. Might be some interesting minutiae in there.
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Old 09-08-21, 01:37 AM
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Originally Posted by droppedandlost View Post
The GR got moved up and the GJ was inserted between the two. The GR was 531 main tubes and became 531 throughout. The GJ took over the 531 main tube position in the lineup, so it's the GR frame from before 74.
I'm really intrigued by the differences between the three models -- GJ, GR, and Le Champion -- for all the years they were made. And no one has yet to convince me what the hell is going on. The specs pages from the Bulgier catalogs for both the tubing and wheel size should give us some really good clues.

​​​​​​The '74 catalog page below does show the GR with 700c wheels. But only the '76 and '77 catalogs show the model as 531 "throughout."


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Old 09-09-21, 12:46 AM
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Originally Posted by droppedandlost View Post
1973-1/2 Motobecane Grand Jubile

Gorgeous bike. I used to think I liked the black and red ones best, but I think red and black might be even better. I just found one myself and am currently cleaning it up, though it's not in such good shape.

Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
I'm really intrigued by the differences between the three models -- GJ, GR, and Le Champion -- for all the years they were made. And no one has yet to convince me what the hell is going on. The specs pages from the Bulgier catalogs for both the tubing and wheel size should give us some really good clues.
TWIUI (which is probably wrong) MB had three lines: Professional, for pros; Grand Record/Jubile/Touring for serious non-pros; and for normal people (Mirage, Nomade, etc). The GR was for the amateur racer, the GJ (eyelets, space for larger tires and fenders) for the Randonee/PBP crowd, the GT for real touring. That's my guess anyway.
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