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The Favorites of the C&V forum: A Quintessential 'Sample Set' Collection

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The Favorites of the C&V forum: A Quintessential 'Sample Set' Collection

Old 09-30-22, 05:51 PM
  #1  
AdventureManCO 
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The Favorites of the C&V forum: A Quintessential 'Sample Set' Collection

One of my favorite things to do on Bikeforums is to browse this subforum and hear about the bikes that others have really enjoyed, then learn more about these bikes, with the hope of one day experiencing them too. Often times, bikes get mentioned over and over, by more than one person. When that happens, these bikes tend to rise to the top of my mind, bikes that seem to be universally loved and admired for a host of reasons. Simply sorting the subforum's threads by the number of replies, seems to be a good way to generate a solid and reliable ranking of interest in certain bikes or brands. This is how several bike have come into the garage.

It got me thinking: What does the quintessential 'sample set' of vintage bicycles look like? If each member of C&V could vote on their favorite top 10 bikes, what would that list look like? What are the most well-regarded, most loved, most consistently recommended rides out there? I thought it might be a fun thought experiment to give ourselves 10 slots and fill them with the most 'classic' of the C&V rides out there; bikes that seems to constitute a well-rounded C&V experience, bikes that if someone knew nothing about old bikes, but wanted to see what they were about, you would recommend, even for the experience alone. And, I like lists.

No two lists will be the same, and that is what makes it fun. What does your list look like? I'm hoping to hear about a few brands or models I maybe haven't heard of yet. I'm not a C&V veteran, but I'm a huge fan of old bikes and the following list represents my incomplete observations from being on this forum for a few years:

1. Miyata 1000 (tourer's dream, Trek 720 close contender)
2. Schwinn Paramount or Peugeot PX-10 (The 'Classic' of classic C&V bikes)
3. Raleigh Super Course / International / Competition (for that 531 feel and magical ride)
4. Peugeot UO8 (the 'punches above its weight')
5. Centurion Ironman (the all-rounder)
6. Schwinn Super Sport / Sports Tourer / Superior (the 'Cadillac' ride)
7. Converted 80s-90s MTB to upright commuter (Trek '900' Series, Tom Ritchey, Fat Chance, Specialized Stumpjumper, Bridgestone MB1, etc)
8. Custom or semi-custom American made ride (Weigle, Sachs, Merz, Bruce Gordon, Eisentraut, Teledyne Titan, etc)
9. A racy Italian (Masi? Colnago? De Rosa? Pinarello? Tomassini? Gios? Ciocc? I have no idea really about brands, but one of them needs to be in here, and it needs to be Ferrari red!)
10. Your own personal 'grail' bike (Alex Singer? Confente? Rene Herse? I don't have one yet, but maybe one day one will stand out! A 1937 Dayton Super Streamline comes close...)

I own 4 of the bikes on the list above. I have a long way to go!

There were a host of other bikes I thought of...Bridgestone RB-1, Specialized Allez, Fuji Opus, Bianchi Specialissima, Eddy Merckx...but I'm sure I'll see some of those in the lists to follow.

Let's see your list!
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Old 09-30-22, 06:00 PM
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I would add to that 4 more entries:
- 'alt' material bike - this would be a Look with carbon tubes, or a Vitus 979, early Kestrel or Calfee.
- 'alt' bike altogether: something other than the typical diamond frame with 700c wheels. This could be lopro bike, time trial bike, Zipp 2001, Trek Y-foil, Softride, Kestrel 500sci, Giant MCR, etc
- Aero tubing bike using either the Columbus Air tubing or Tange Aero tubing
- Fixed gear track bike
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Old 09-30-22, 06:27 PM
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hmm,, I'm a piker with only 3 bikes each fitting a role, so may not make a 10 list. so many different ways to think about it reynolds, tange, columbus, engilish, french italian

so in no particular order for me
  • A bespoke steel bike outfitted to your preference. Not vintage, but classic inspired
  • A go to bike as you like....mine now is an 85 team miyata
  • Torpado Superlight, with current campy, had a super strada and it rode so well, I am intrigued at how the top end rides. Hit the columbus, Italian, campy, and different checklists
  • Miyata team period correct friction. my 84 team is the best riding bike i have ever had and you have to have a Cino bike. hits the japanese, Miyata tubing and shimano checklists (there is a nice one in the for sale section if you are a 59cm guy...not mine
  • De Rosa my size because there is nothing like De Rosa red, only bike my wife has noticed
  • A hop on and de an errand/go to the brew pub bike. this is bike that can change in an out.....so it is the utility of it and the fun to build. currently a SR Semi pro, 600 arabesque so that hits tange 2 tubing
  • A high end Raleigh from late 70's early 80's Iconic, flexiible, hit's the 531, english checklists
  • A chrome paramount, with campy another Icon
  • have to have one bike at least with tubular tires
  • the surprise bike you don't know you need until karma intercedes and you trip over it
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Old 09-30-22, 07:40 PM
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I didn't have any plans or categories for the bikes I picked up. Most of them were just bikes I found locally that I couldn't say no to.

I have bikes in each of these categories:
  • That said, I like American bikes. It's not difficult to find a top end Schwinn, Cannondale, Trek, and a custom US bike. I like sports touring bikes and there are a lot of good made in the US bikes that tick this box.
  • Vintage mountain bikes rock IMO.
  • I really like in between bikes suitable for road and gravel. I like cross bikes, top end hybrids, B'stone X0 bikes, Bianchi Project bikes.
  • I really like the top end Japanese bikes and Japanese components perform admirably at a reasonable cost.
  • I like having a few different European bikes (Italian, French, and British at a minimal). I'm partial to French bikes.
  • I like older bikes. So a 50s era bike, a 60s era, and a 70s era is a good start.

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Old 09-30-22, 08:08 PM
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I'm 2yrs into a slow sell-off of the 30 or so I still have. I've narrowed down a few keepers...

1. 1985 Norco Magnum ST touring bike fits my "fast hauler" to haul anything from burritos to library books to post office runs under 30lbs.
2. 1998 Lemond Good Air. My 853 beater, go-to bike for clearing my head, physical therapy rides, or if I just need to get myself somewhere without luggage.
3. 2004 Airborne track bike. Because if you buy a ti track bike, you're stuck with it.
4. 1987ish Gueceriotti Aelle for my Italian. Which means I have a Masi GC, Pina Montello, and Centurelli that I still need to move.
5. Unknown, possible Holdsworth as my beater fixed gear tracklocross. Ugly and dented. The frameset and deepV rims came from the co-op, I built the wheels with 1.8-1.5 spokes for fun.
6. CNC Special french custom, because it's red, fast, and oh so french.
7. Colin Laing custom. Because it's ornate, fits great, and is a product of incredible attention to detail.
8/9/10/11/12 Flavor of the month Raleigh/English 531 clubracers

Honorable mention: late 80s Burley Samba tandem. Early model with 1" threaded headset and no boom-tube to triangulate the frame. It's aptly named whenever my wife and i take it out.
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Old 09-30-22, 09:07 PM
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Not sure I have favorites. I've bought, ridden, and then sold pretty much everything on the OP's list. Guess I'm just fickle. But here's the 10 oldest bikes in my current fleet, all ready to ride:

1937 Raleigh Sports C Tourist
1940 Raleigh Sports
1949 Raleigh Clubman
1950 Raleigh Lenton Tourist
1961 Hetchins Experto Crede
1971 Raleigh International 650B
1973 Raleigh Gran Sport (3-speed)
1973 Wes Mason Gold Medal
1974 Mercian
1974 Norman Fay tourer
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Old 09-30-22, 09:22 PM
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I think the favorites of the c&v forum are the '70s and '80s mid-level road bikes with some pizzazz, like the Motobécane Grand Record. That's a bike that looks just right with a rear rack and some gear on it. Or put it in a big gear, grab the drops, and put the hammer down.
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Old 10-01-22, 07:54 AM
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if someone knew nothing about old bikes, but wanted to see what they were about, you would recommend, even for the experience alone.

70s or earlier English 3-speed
531 throughout: 1 long tourer, 1 short wheelbase racer
Mid 80s MTB with Deerhead or Sun Tour XC
Bikes that each came with: Friction Shimano 600
Indexed 6 speed 105
Friction Super Record
Nuovo Record
Simplex Criterium
Mafac Racer or Competition
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Old 10-01-22, 09:23 AM
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Actually, not well known, C&V is not just nostalgia.

1. Penny Farthing
2. 1920s Alcyon, Henri Desgrange's vision
3. 1932 Frejus with Vittoria Margherita. I believe the first Worlds to be won with a derailleur.
4. 1935 Umberto Dei. Raffaele di Paco obtaining grand tour (Giro) stage wins the first time with Campagnolo 2-lever derailleur. But he used butterfly nut to secure the front.
5. 1952 Bianchi with Campagnolo Gran Sport. Giro, Tour and Coppi. Of course that bike.
6. 1967 Peugeot PX-10. Black & white Eddy goodness.
7. 1973 Masi USA
8. 1979 fully pantographed, drillium Ortelli with SR. Eye-taian bling.
9. 1949 Viscontea pista. Everyone should have a pista. I'll get mine back soon.
10. 202? Chapman. Everyone should have a custom
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Old 10-01-22, 11:32 AM
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I think I have or have had most of the bikes I lusted after (nothing really rare or obscure.)
Interesting to see and learn about the bikes others here favor. So, here’s my list (for now):

✅ ‘74 Carlsbad Masi GC
✅ ‘96 De Rosa Primato
✅ ‘07 Serotta Ottrott (not “V” but still “C” IMHO)
✅(sort of) ‘82 Stumpjumper (have the 2007 Classic re-issue)
✅ ‘86 Celeste Bianchi Grizzly MTB
✅ ‘81 AD Vent Noir (probably not on anyone else’s list but this is one that I’d recommend trying out)
➖ ‘60s Raleigh Sports 3-speed (had a nice one but gave it to a friend)
👀 ‘70s Motobecane Grand Record in the Black/Red colors - just a beautiful bike
👀 ‘80s Trek 720 - dream tourer for me
🧷 Place holder for further consideration (probably another Italian, or a Stingray Krate, or an adult sized Marx Big Wheel)


✅ = Have
➖ = Had
👀 = Looking
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Old 10-01-22, 12:13 PM
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Hmmmmmmm

1) 60’s chrome Paramount (don’t have but would like to)

2) 1975 Raleigh Competition. (Have)

3) big tube aluminum 80’s/90’s bike (I have a Klein)

4) steel track bike - my example is a Waterford

5) 80’s/90’s Italian Stallion. (I’ve got several - bonus for red - But I’ve got a red Colnago Super and a pearl DeBernardi

6) early 80’s mountain bike (Stumpjumper or similar)

7) early 90’s MTB (Yeti Pro Fro is mine - would love to have a Mantis and a lively painted Klein

8) BMX style beach cruiser - Cooks Bros style

9) Touring bike - I like the Cannondales but really have zero touring bike knowledge or experience

10). Can a C&V expose’ be complete without a Schwinn Varsity ?
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Old 10-01-22, 12:22 PM
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Here in this forum We don’t discuss them much

but what about classic “neighborhood bikes”? The lightweight racers and tourers a lot of us love are cool, (to us)
But it’s the old neighborhood bikes and kids bikes that spark nostalgic memories with lots

1) any Schwinn Stingray (or similar banana seat bike)

2) Huffy 3 speed with a basket

3) Kuwahara ET BMX bike

4) other early BMX bikes

5) beach cruisers - fat tired

6) throw in a Free Spirit 12 speed

7) the ubiquitous Schwinn Varsity/ Continental

8) middleweight cruiser like a Schwinn Corvette

9) and - how about a fun bike , like the banana seat bikes that hinged in the middle

i can’t think of a tenth because with a couple of specific examples, “neighborhood bike” really covers a broad spectrum
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Old 10-01-22, 05:06 PM
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I look at it similar to how DMC707 described. It's a big, big bike world out there. With a list that big, they all sure as hell ain't gonna be roadies. That's almost like picking different types of vanilla as an all-time ice cream flavor list. Aside from strictly road bikes:

English three speeds - best city bike ever invented.
Adult size BMX bike - either a new one or a conversion build. You just might feel like a kid again. Put a price on that!
Roadsters and Dutch bikes - large and in charge. Nothing else rides like these. They have to be experienced.
Beach cruiser/balloon tire bike - Sunglasses, flip-flops, grab a beer or a sno-cone and chill.

Most importantly, put the best tires you can find/afford on them. It matters.
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Old 11-25-22, 09:24 AM
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Can you post a pic of your Norman Fay, please?
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Old 11-25-22, 10:45 AM
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Sampler for those that like the number "10"

1) Old Italian steel road bike, Campagnolo Record or NR equipped.

2) Italian steel road bike from the MTB era; Record-C or Dura-Ace equipped; bonus points for garish paint jobs.

3) USA/Canada boutique-builder steel road or mountain bike (Serotta, Richard Sachs, Rock Lobster, Ritchey, Klein, Spectrum, Brodie, Strawberry, etc.)

4) USA or Canada-built handmade steel road bike from major manufacturer (Trek, Specialized, Cannondale, Miele, Schwinn Paramount / Waterford, etc.).

5) Old British steel road bike from pre-boom era; bonus points for Flying Scot or Hetchins.

6) High-end French steel road (Peugeot PX-10 or PY-10; Motobecane Grand Record; Gitane TdF, etc.)

7) High-end Japanese steel road (3Rensho, Nagasawa, Panasonic Osaka; Cherubim; Kalavinka, etc.)

8) Fixed-gear; track or vintage high-end road bike set up for courier/street use,

9) Drop-bar vintage MTB or hybrid.

10) Vintage cyclocross bike with fat tubular tires.
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Old 11-25-22, 11:56 AM
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The list has been an evolution over time.

Early on, coveted 1970's race bikes of my teens - Colnago, Ron Cooper, Raleigh International-Pro, Gitane, Paramount...

Then morphed into having multiple countries represented: Italy, England, France, Switzerland, Japan, US, Mexico.

Suddenly, there were too many bikes that started with "M": Masi, Mercian, Mondia, Motobecane, Medici. That had to change.

Good, down to 2 M's but where did all the blue bikes come from? Need a variety of colors...

Now, there is a variety of types in a variety of colors: Track, Stage Race (for Eroica); French tourer; Weight Weenie; 5-Speed; Single Speed; heavy patina for around town; fancy lugged English. Purple, green, black, yellow (everyone needs 1 yellow bike), chrome, brown. Gosh, need a red and blue... Maybe a vintage MTB will make the grade at some point.
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Old 11-25-22, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Jordanmilo View Post
Can you post a pic of your Norman Fay, please?
I‘m assuming you mean me as I don’t think anyone else referred to one:

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Old 11-25-22, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
I‘m assuming you mean me as I don’t think anyone else referred to one:

Such a civilized looking bicycle.
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Old 11-25-22, 02:40 PM
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Some specifics, some generalities, and some specific generalities:
A serious touring bike. You’ll never take that week- long tour unless you have the equipment. Fenders optional, but definitely front and rear racks and bags.
A less serious touring- type bike. Something you can grab and ride for a weekend or 24ON. Ok if it gets dirty, has gravel dings. Gotta be competent, forgiving handling.
A late 80’s Schwinn racy-type bike. They made a bunch of them: Prologue, Circuit, Super Sport, and my gave Tempo,to name a few. Under rated, punch well above their weight class.
An aluminum framed bike with a steel fork. Literally anything well made from aluminum. Trust me on this.
A bike from Belgium. Could be a Merckx, could be something else, but there’s a certain magic there.
An Italian racy bike. Should have limited tire clearance and be stunning to look at. No other description required.
A 650B bike. Frameset provenance not important, could be anything from bespoke to 70-80’s frameset with correct BB drop and tire clearance. You will thank me.
An older, very cool, hard to find and maybe even kinda weird bike. Everyone needs an oddball cousin, especially if they attract interest.
A newer CF bike with modern but not necessarily electronic shifting. There’s a reason people like them, you probably will too.
A NEW lugged or filet brazed steel bike. New tubes really are a revelation,even if set up with an older group of components.
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Old 11-25-22, 03:08 PM
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Considering all the things you've mentioned, my vote is for a single bicycle and example: The late-70's Raleigh/Carlton Competition GS. This one bike brings together all of the qualities that I love; speed, stability, versatility, tradition, fine detail, quality, beauty. It's popularity was also a major factor in my choosing it as the epitome of many of the characteristics that you listed.

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Old 11-25-22, 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by rccardr View Post
Some specifics, some generalities, and some specific generalities:
A serious touring bike. You’ll never take that week- long tour unless you have the equipment. Fenders optional, but definitely front and rear racks and bags.
A less serious touring- type bike. Something you can grab and ride for a weekend or 24ON. Ok if it gets dirty, has gravel dings. Gotta be competent, forgiving handling.
A late 80’s Schwinn racy-type bike. They made a bunch of them: Prologue, Circuit, Super Sport, and my gave Tempo,to name a few. Under rated, punch well above their weight class.
An aluminum framed bike with a steel fork. Literally anything well made from aluminum. Trust me on this.
A bike from Belgium. Could be a Merckx, could be something else, but there’s a certain magic there.
An Italian racy bike. Should have limited tire clearance and be stunning to look at. No other description required.
A 650B bike. Frameset provenance not important, could be anything from bespoke to 70-80’s frameset with correct BB drop and tire clearance. You will thank me.
An older, very cool, hard to find and maybe even kinda weird bike. Everyone needs an oddball cousin, especially if they attract interest.
A newer CF bike with modern but not necessarily electronic shifting. There’s a reason people like them, you probably will too.
A NEW lugged or filet brazed steel bike. New tubes really are a revelation,even if set up with an older group of components.
Hmm, I can only check three or four boxes on that list and have a LOT of bikes. I must be doing somethng wrong.
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Old 11-25-22, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by kunsunoke View Post
Sampler for those that like the number "10"

1) Old Italian steel road bike, Campagnolo Record or NR equipped.

2) Italian steel road bike from the MTB era; Record-C or Dura-Ace equipped; bonus points for garish paint jobs.

3) USA/Canada boutique-builder steel road or mountain bike (Serotta, Richard Sachs, Rock Lobster, Ritchey, Klein, Spectrum, Brodie, Strawberry, etc.)

4) USA or Canada-built handmade steel road bike from major manufacturer (Trek, Specialized, Cannondale, Miele, Schwinn Paramount / Waterford, etc.).

5) Old British steel road bike from pre-boom era; bonus points for Flying Scot or Hetchins.

6) High-end French steel road (Peugeot PX-10 or PY-10; Motobecane Grand Record; Gitane TdF, etc.)

7) High-end Japanese steel road (3Rensho, Nagasawa, Panasonic Osaka; Cherubim; Kalavinka, etc.)

8) Fixed-gear; track or vintage high-end road bike set up for courier/street use,

9) Drop-bar vintage MTB or hybrid.

10) Vintage cyclocross bike with fat tubular tires.
I like that list. For number 3 I would add Fuso-Dave Moulton.

Last edited by embankmentlb; 11-25-22 at 07:32 PM.
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Old 11-25-22, 09:28 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
Hmm, I can only check three or four boxes on that list and have a LOT of bikes. I must be doing somethng wrong.
My hourly consultation rate is quite reasonable.
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Old 11-25-22, 10:23 PM
  #24  
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Excellent lists all, even 'philosophy changing'. My bread and butter has mainly been 70s-80s road bikes, but as time goes on I think that may expand and I may consolidate what I have.

I have both a Gitane TdF and a Peugeot PX-10. Pretty redundant. The TdF is not up and running yet, but I'm hopeful in the next year it will be sorted. More than likely, one will come out on top and the other will be sold or given away.

I also have a Trek Multi-Track 750 and a Trek 990 that I converted to 700c. Redundant. The 990 is such a fun project...really checks that 'tinkering' box, and the Trek 750 has such a nice cushy ride...just a solid, well thought out machine.

I'm appreciating these other lists. Please keep them coming.
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Old 11-26-22, 02:14 AM
  #25  
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I can only talk about bikes I've ridden and in my advanced age I don't really ride them hard but ...

high end motobecane... Le Champion, Great ride and incredibly comfortable. early 70s so it takes 700cx35 with fenders. Fast competent and great fun.

High end Raleigh... Professional mkiii. This is a lot like the le champion except less room for tires. However it's real easy with tektro 559s to go 650bx38. It's a total gas in this guise! My favorite right now
Trek 720... My favorite touring bike ever. Thing is, I only travel with front racks nowadays. This bike takes any forward load with ease. I also put a huge saddle bag on it. Just primo with 700cx35 and fenders. All my bikes have dynamos and lights.
If I never have another bike I have enough for rest of my life. Also I have many not mentioned here that I love.

Le Champion

Professional

Trek 720

Last edited by 52telecaster; 11-26-22 at 02:19 AM.
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