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What "strange" things do people notice about your C&V bikes?

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What "strange" things do people notice about your C&V bikes?

Old 05-17-23, 08:10 PM
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What "strange" things do people notice about your C&V bikes?

Some time back I rode one of my bikes to a run and one of the people there I knew had seen my rebuild on facebook. He came over to get a look at my bike and was complimentary. But he did not recognize what the down tube shift lever were. He rides and has a newer bike, but I was kinda surprised that shift levers were not something that apparently some people recognize.

A lot of members here have some very nice bikes that I'm sure attract attention. What kind of questions or comments do you get on these old rides?
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Old 05-17-23, 09:04 PM
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I can only remember one comment about one of my bikes- a guy recognized my Trek 720 as a Trek 720.
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Old 05-17-23, 09:18 PM
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When I show up to group rides on a vintage bike, I rarely get any comment at all. Most people there don’t fetishize old bike like we do. I have gotten compliments on my leather Dromarti shoes, however.
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Old 05-17-23, 10:12 PM
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Mostly just get family members or girlfriends teasing about 'the next bike'.

I did have one guy who noticed my 1983 Miyata 1200 and said nice bike, and that it 'rides like a cadillac'. Oh and a guy who noticed my 1988 Miyata ridgerunner team and knew that it was a nice bike, despite those old mountain bikes looking like nothing special to the average person.
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Old 05-17-23, 10:45 PM
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I have people ask me if it's a rivendell. I also get them worried about my brakes.
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Old 05-18-23, 04:53 AM
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"Shiny".

When I do group rides -- not often -- every other bike is CF and all the components black. Chrome and polished aluminum stands out... lots of reflections in direct sun. I do get comments on that.
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Old 05-18-23, 06:17 AM
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Yup!, the down tube shift levers always seem to puzzle the younger riders out there.....
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Old 05-18-23, 06:24 AM
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Old 05-18-23, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuck M
But he did not recognize what the down tube shift lever were. He rides and has a newer bike, but I was kinda surprised that shift levers were not something that apparently some people recognize.
I had exactly the opposite experience with one of my Mooneys. I had ridden to a local farm market to get a quick bite prior to a ride, and a guy at one of the stands saw just the front end of my bike with Campy Ergo and thought I didn't have shifters.
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Old 05-18-23, 06:32 AM
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Originally Posted by nlerner
When I show up to group rides on a vintage bike, I rarely get any comment at all. Most people there don’t fetishize old bike like we do.
I don't fetishize my old bikes, I just don't like the direction of the current bike industry. I helped run a college metal smithing/jewelry studio, and I like metal craft work, and I appreciate it in my bicycles.
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Old 05-18-23, 06:35 AM
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Some dumb kids, "thats a tight bike….I bet it corners like its on wheels….."



Yes, yes it does.
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Old 05-18-23, 06:35 AM
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I showed up to a C&V ride on my 1947 Monark Rocket. One guy told me it had the wrong chain guard. I said yes and the chain guard cost me $3 not to have to roll up my pant leg.

I did the metric century route on a large invitational ride upon my 1968 Raleigh Superbe 3 speed a while back. Several people told me that it wasn’t possible on such a heavy bike. Fooled’em.
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Old 05-18-23, 06:50 AM
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I occasionally get a comment, but most folks don't care. Just because we may think it is cool to fix and ride beautiful old bikes doesn't mean that anyone else thinks that.
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Old 05-18-23, 07:12 AM
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I once had a mechanic at a shop ask me if the tire savers I had on my wife's Cannondale ST400 where just there as noisemakers because he had never seen them before.
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Old 05-18-23, 07:26 AM
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Hasn't happened yet but one day I expect someone to ask, "Where is the battery?"
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Old 05-18-23, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by himespau
I once had a mechanic at a shop ask me if the tire savers I had on my wife's Cannondale ST400 where just there as noisemakers because he had never seen them before.
I didn't think about those. I imagine hub shiners are another thing that puzzles people.
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Old 05-18-23, 08:12 AM
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Last week I rode my heavily patinaed FW Evans and some guys really liked it and said I should leave it as is. This week, a different guy took one look and said "you need to paint that thing".

On the weekly group ride, for a long time, I was just some old guy with an old bike. Eventually, some people started to notice that I frequently had a different old bike each week. One of the guys from last week told me I had inspired him to ask about an old bike he found in a basement while working on an estate settlement. He couldn't remember the name, but just thought it would be fun to fix it up and relive his youth.
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Old 05-18-23, 08:35 AM
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I don't do group rides or multi-rider events so no comments there. I think non-cyclists just see a bicycle.
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Old 05-18-23, 10:14 AM
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I recently rode my first group ride in years. Apparently people wearing spandex and riding Cervelos were not impressed with some old guy riding a 70’s Super Course, wearing cargo shorts.
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Old 05-18-23, 11:01 AM
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I quite often get 'nice bike' from cyclists around Putney, they're usually on something black and quite noisy.

An old guy at a pedestrian crossing could remember when the local 'factory' shut down, apparently several stock bikes were 'liberated' by the staff
Given the local 'factory' is the Putney shop where they made Holdsworth Specials that's a nice leaving present.
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Old 05-18-23, 12:37 PM
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I still remember when I was a kid and I first saw a real racing bike close up when a neighbor parked his bike in front of our house.
I was pretty mechanically inclined as a kid (One of those kids who like to take things apart to see how they work.?), But I could not figure out how the dearsilleurs, especially the rear one, worked. I followed the cables from the bike's downtube levers to the derailleur but it all sort of gets all lost and confusing after that point.
I think a lot of non-bikers just still see our C&V bikes like I used to. Their minds hits the cancel button in the middle of trying to figure out how a classic bike works.

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Old 05-18-23, 12:46 PM
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Oh, I've heard things like 'man those are some skinny frame tubes' is that safe?', how do those work on the down tube? I wouldn't ride that... I've had people say they wouldn't ride a bike over ten years old.

From the people I buy, 'dude! That thing is garbage', or 'you're thelling me that's worth something!?' as I'm rolling out with some obscure euro-asian-American brand that no one can find anything about.

I guess I do hear clack clack clack increasingly in volume only to have someone totally out of breath yelling something about "ON THE LEFT, they pass and apologize "sorry..."

I had some local transitional lifestyle people ask me if I needed a tow up the hill, lol
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Old 05-18-23, 12:54 PM
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I was on my rat-rod Holdsworth Pro riding with a friend a while back. We tend to just 'go for it' on about any surface no matter what bikes we're on (I've got 35c tires shoehorned into the Holdsworth, though) and he wanted to check out a newly opened trail system near where we were riding (and use it as a short-cut). We rode into the parking area and beginning of the trails and it wasn't clear at all which trail would get us to the other side, but there were a bunch of young people on fat-tire mountain bikes just ahead so we went up and asked them. They said, 'oh we're going that way, just come with us'. One kid asked about my bike and they were absolutely dumbfounded when I said it was a 1979. None of these kids were born in the last century. They expressed some doubt as to whether I'd make it on an old road bike and said 'we'll wait for you up ahead if you have to walk it!' Well, it was quite technical and not exactly 'fun' in any way other than as a 'challenge', but I kept up the whole way, which further amazed them. Then we chatted a bit about how much bikes were and they couldn't believe that all-in this Holdworth build is somewhere under $400.....
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Old 05-18-23, 01:01 PM
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My most possibly 89er Bianchi SBX in celeste was an attention catcher for others. Often people stopped me on the street if they can have a look at either because it was a Bianchi and they knew it, or to ask how old is it and they didnt want to believe it was 18, or to give my advices that it is way too valuable and dangerous for shopping or riding in snow etc.
Once a young woman looked at it on the underground like she wanted to have children from it so I asked "are you a Bianchi fan?" it took a few seconds until the question reached her mind then she suddenly looked like she returned from coma and said she has no clue what bicycle it is. So I asked if she is an art student and she admitted yes and absolutely in love with the color.

The most comments i get from excuse seekers. They say the bike is beautiful and they would like one but these are so expensive. And when I say any modern bike costs minimum 5x more (today even 50x is not rare either if we look at modern carbon not to mention with electric supoort drive) then they come with the excuses that they couldnt maintain or they have medical issues or they want electric.
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Old 05-18-23, 01:05 PM
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Usually, they look at the frame pump on it and ask, "What is that?"
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