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The height or 70's mediocrity (Apollo)

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The height or 70's mediocrity (Apollo)

Old 10-24-05, 09:13 AM
  #1  
lyledriver
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The height or 70's mediocrity (Apollo)

So here's a 1976 Apollo Mk1 that I recently rescued from my parents shed.

I know it's nothing special, but for the shape it was in, it cleaned up pretty nice.
I plan on using it as a winter beater, so I don't have to get my other bike wet.



I gave it:

-A thorough cleaning/tuning
-New fork (old ones bent)
-longer stem
-flipped north road bars
-koolstop brake pads
-some cheap (27x1-3/8") touring tires
-new front rim
-new alloy post (to replace bent steel one)
-new seat
-new cables
-plastic fenders (to replace rusted bent chrome ones)

It rides pretty nice, and everything feels pretty dialed. However, the cranks are garbage, and if I stand up, I can feel them flex. I might have to replace those before I can commute on this thing.

I'm sure I've violated many style rules as far as parts go, but whatever, its cost me about $80 so far.

Let me know what you think.. and if you've got any recommendations for plentiful quality old school cranks, I'd love to hear em.
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Old 10-24-05, 10:12 AM
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jet sanchEz
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Weird, I just bought an old Apollo for a friend at work for 9$CDN at an auction. It is neat looking and works well, I will try to post pics later.
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Old 10-24-05, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by lyledriver
-flipped north road bars
As I was cleaning up the handlebars on my Suburban, I thought about installing them upside down when I put them on instead of moving to true drop bars. How is it working for you?

I figure it is actually a better move than the usual inversion of drop bars to get artificial rise, mostly because I had never seen it before and thought it would be unique... Well, I can no longer say that, since I have now seen it.

When I was looking at Nashbar this weekend, I did notice that the Nashbar branded mustach bars look suspiciously like upside down Suburban handlebars.
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Old 10-24-05, 10:39 AM
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The bars work great actually.

I couldn't decide if I was going to put grips on them, or tape them. But during last night's maiden ride I found my hands most comfortable at the start of the curve.
So I've since chopped 2" off the end of each side, and change the angle a bit. Now its got a 'fauxstache' kind of look.

Now my only decision is whether to tape them from the outside -> in, or the inside -> out. I think inside->out would result in less peeling of the edges.
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Old 10-24-05, 12:39 PM
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Sugino, think i spelled that right, or sakae, ur basic 70's-80's jap parts are good for the price. Might check ebay.
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Old 10-24-05, 01:34 PM
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The height of mediocrity in the Canadian entry level market during the mid 1970s was the CCM Targa. The workmanship on the Apollo frames were superior to what CCM was putting out, but not as quite as good as Sekine. On paper they were comparable, but in person there was a world of difference.

Are you sure the cranks are flexing? They were very solid. You may have a loose bottom bracket, cotter pins or pedal problem. However, you may want to replace the cranks just to save some weight and eliminate the maintenance hassle of the cotter pins. FYI, the next model up (Gran Tour) came with the aluminum, cotterless, Sugino Maxy, which are fairly common and cheap, though they are swaged and do not have an interchangeable, large chainring.

By the way, given that the bicycle had a bent front wheel and forks, you may want to check for wrinkling of the underside of the top and down tubes, just behind the head lugs. Also check for cracks in the paint, at the same location, but on the top of the tubes. Either indicates a bent main teriangle.
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Old 10-24-05, 01:48 PM
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^wow, very informative.
I couldn't find much info on Apollo when I looked around the net.

I'm pretty sure these cranks are flexing. Either that or the pedals. These ones say Sugino on them, but you cannot change the large ring. My BMX has heat treated cranks so in comparison these feel like I'm standing on tree branches. The cotter pins are tight, and the bottom bracket has no play in it.

I'm going to swap out the pedals first though, and put some toe clip compatible ones on.

There is actually a very small amount of frame damage.
Just behind the lug on the topside of the top tube, there is a slight paint wrinkle,
(the bike was driven into a garage on the roof of a car) But I measured the headset cups and they're still round so I think its pretty minor.
As I put miles on it I'll be sure to watch it to see if it gets any worse.
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Old 10-24-05, 07:49 PM
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As long as there is no buckling or wrinkles in the tubes, it is highly unlikely that you will experience a tube failure. However, the alignment has probably been thrown off. The head tube angle is undoubtedly a bit steeper and the tracking was probably disturbed, unless it was a perfect head-on collision. A good LBS can correct this, but unless you notice something like the bicycle pulling to one side in normal riding, then you shouldn't worry about it.

FYI, Apollo were distributed primarily in Australia and Canada. The Canadian distributor was Fred Deeley Imports of your home town. Many of the Apollo frames were manufactured by Kuwahara in Japan, with assembly being done by Deeley.
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Old 10-24-05, 10:08 PM
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Since we are talking about mediocre, how about iversons? My parents have an iverson that I was thinking about redoing as a single speed or possibly as a fixie. Anyone have any experience with these?
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Old 10-24-05, 11:37 PM
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I love the green!!! And the handlebars are a neat idea. I just happen to have a Suburban sitting around, and a Continental I just painted, and.......hmmmm.......
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Old 10-25-05, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar
As long as there is no buckling or wrinkles in the tubes, it is highly unlikely that you will experience a tube failure. However, the alignment has probably been thrown off. The head tube angle is undoubtedly a bit steeper and the tracking was probably disturbed, unless it was a perfect head-on collision. A good LBS can correct this, but unless you notice something like the bicycle pulling to one side in normal riding, then you shouldn't worry about it.

FYI, Apollo were distributed primarily in Australia and Canada. The Canadian distributor was Fred Deeley Imports of your home town. Many of the Apollo frames were manufactured by Kuwahara in Japan, with assembly being done by Deeley.
The head tube is probably bent to a slacker angle, though not by much. The nose of the seat hit the garage first, bending the post back. Since the forks were secured to the rack, it pulled them forwards resulting in the paint wrinkling on the top of the top tube. The tracking of the bike seems pretty good, so I would say it was a direct hit.

But yeah, headset cups are still round (they say Kuwahara), so its all good.
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Old 10-29-05, 10:36 AM
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Fixie, dude! It'd be sweet...
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Old 10-29-05, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar
Are you sure the cranks are flexing? They were very solid. You may have a loose bottom bracket, cotter pins or pedal problem. However, you may want to replace the cranks just to save some weight and eliminate the maintenance hassle of the cotter pins. FYI, the next model up (Gran Tour) came with the aluminum, cotterless, Sugino Maxy, which are fairly common and cheap, though they are swaged and do not have an interchangeable, large chainring.
.
I was thinking the same thing as T-Mar. Those cranks are cottered steel cranks. It is not likely they are bending. It IS POSSIBLE that the frame is flexing and it feels like the crank is bending. I have seen that before - expecially on the light weight Italian frames.
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Old 10-30-05, 12:07 AM
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Some imposter stole that Apollo name, my late 50's Roadster is an Apollo, the super steel bicycle, made by Phillips still ready to take on all obsticles, in original BRG no less.
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