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Gitane Tour De France ~ please help me date

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Gitane Tour De France ~ please help me date

Old 12-16-05, 02:11 AM
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italianbiker
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picked up a nice gitane tour de france, well it says that on the fork and on the downtube. the fork has a reynolds sticker. it looks as the sticker on the seat tube has been washed away, but looks like remnents of 531. stronglight cranks, says professional tour de france on the downtube. simplex shifters, front and rear derailleur. mafac competition, saddle and rims appear to have been replaced.

anyone know which saddle and rims may have been on here?

top tube cable clips are Huret

the simples rear derailleur appears to be shot. there is no integral derailleur hanger on the frame. will have some pix up shortly

SS#
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Old 12-16-05, 09:09 AM
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This may help:
http://www.classicrendezvous.com/France/Gitane.htm
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Old 12-16-05, 09:15 AM
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www.gitaneusa.com has a new catalog page with several years in it check there . this is a new website that is coming online. sooner or later the yahoo groups gitane page will be phased out.if anybody else has any catalogs that are not on the catalog page, a full scan of the catalog would be appreciated. more pics will be added to the models section soon as the web guy gets it up.should have a forum and a place where folks can post pics of there gitanes.
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Old 12-16-05, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by lofter
www.gitaneusa.com has a new catalog page with several years in it check there . this is a new website that is coming online. sooner or later the yahoo groups gitane page will be phased out.if anybody else has any catalogs that are not on the catalog page, a full scan of the catalog would be appreciated. more pics will be added to the models section soon as the web guy gets it up.should have a forum and a place where folks can post pics of there gitanes.
I wish every bike company would do this, publish scans of their old catalouge. It is a very nice way to exemplify the company's history AND it makes us old-timers happy when we can find pics of the old rides we find. I hope Ciocc notices, I have no idea what year mine is

edit: I also like the hairstyles




Last edited by jet sanchEz; 12-16-05 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 12-16-05, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by jet sanchEz
I wish every bike company would do this, publish scans of their old catalouge. It is a very nice way to exemplify the company's history AND it makes us old-timers happy when we can find pics of the old rides we find. I hope Ciocc notices, I have no idea what year mine is
actually it isnt a bike company here in the us, its a friend of mine who has a passion for gitanes as do I.he wanted a domain that had gitane in it so he bought this one.the catalog page is something that alot of peeps have contributed scans of their catalogs they own. im with you on the idea of companies doing the same but it just isnt happening so my friend took it upon himself to do it. .....don
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Old 12-16-05, 02:22 PM
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speaking of bellbottoms. . .
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Sono pił lento di quel che sembra.
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Old 12-16-05, 02:37 PM
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Stephan Andranian knows Gitanes!
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Old 12-16-05, 02:49 PM
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do you think that if I got a Gitane tandem....
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Old 12-16-05, 02:49 PM
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hey those are great links and thanks. i was surprised by how sloppy the bike was put together. the welds are ok, and the gold outlined lugs are, ahh.

but guess what, i pulled out the seat tube and i found a snail inside!!! do you think it was the ridders lunch
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Old 12-16-05, 06:15 PM
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Originally Posted by luker
do you think that if I got a Gitane tandem....
No.
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I explained that he could never pay me enough cash for the amount of work I had put into that bike and the only way to compensate me for it was to ride the hell out of it.
IRO Angus Casati Gold Line
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Old 12-16-05, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by jet
I also like the hairstyles
Ahh, memory lane. Hair.
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Old 12-17-05, 01:01 PM
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here are some pics. i changed the bottom derailleur. the orig simplix was split on the back end. now i know what people were talking about. cleaned up the frame a little. i also replaced the rear simplex derailleur. the original had 71 on the back. might that be the year?

the close up of the rear d/o is stamped 20 22 with a 1 at the back. the inside is marked N 4. anyone understand the nomenclature?

i took the bike out for a spin and rides good so far, just dont know how to adjust a derailleur. is there a sight that someone can send me to for reading.






























Attached Images
File Type: jpg
gitane tour de france 003.jpg (53.1 KB, 28 views)

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Old 12-17-05, 01:52 PM
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i damaged the chain. i had a performance chain remover and the pin came off easy, but when i whent to put the pin back in, what -a pain in the arse. so i bent the link as it went through the last part, pushed it out. is there an easier way or i'm i not using the tool properly?? needless to say it held up for a good 5 mi. can i replace just the link? i think the chain says france sedis

Arya 700C rims, whats your opinion on these. i will keep these untill i can find a set of normandy luxe hubs, but how do these compare??. i p/u this bike as a project bike, but really did not have to do to much, just replace the derailleurs, which i had from other bikes that i p/u.

would a brooks leather saddle be appropriate or ideale?
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Old 12-17-05, 02:44 PM
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Nice bike, great find. It looks like it is in great shape for it's age. I have two of these that are very similar but with a few differences. Both of mine came with Sugino Mighty Competition(Campy Nouvo Record knockoff) cranksets. I've since switched both bikes over to Stronglight 93 cranks. Your fork crown is more ornate than mine. Your derailleurs look to be Simplex Prestige. Mine are/were Simplex Criterium. I can see that your brakes are Mafac but I can't tell if they are "Racer" or "Competition". Mine were "Competition". One bike came with Campy Nouvo Tipo hubs(I don't remember what the rims were, some kind of tubular which I promptly discarded), the other bike didn't have the original wheels so no help there. I would think an Ideale saddle would be more appropriate than the Brooks, but I won't speculate on what was original. My circa 1970 catalog doesn't list the saddle and I don't think either of mine were. One was a Middlemore(very comfortable), and the other a Cinelli Unicanitor.

One hint when breaking the chain. Don't push the pin all the way out. Push out only far enough so that the link can be separated by flexing the chain with a sideways bend. This leaves the pin still inserted in one of the side plates.
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Old 12-17-05, 03:25 PM
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What a find! Incredible condition-- it almost looks new!
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Old 12-17-05, 03:29 PM
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ahhh, makes sense. yeah it took forever to get it back into the first hole. then i did not have it aligned properly and missed the back hole, pushing the last plate out. maybe i can still save it. i will try and remove it once more and rebend the plate. it still rides nice but i think it will break off soon.... learning curve.

sierra, would you have a pic of the criterium derailleur? i would like to see what they looked like. the orig. was a prestige and i had another one laying around so it aligned nicely.

Brakes are competition.

any one have a guesstimate as to the value of the tour d'france bike. i'm not sure if i'm keeping it yet. it does fit
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Old 12-17-05, 03:33 PM
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If it was my size, I'd say it's worth a six-pack.
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Old 12-17-05, 04:20 PM
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Mine has the same fork crown as yours, but my lugs have shorter points and the seat stay ends are finished off differently. It seems like no two TdF frames were exactly alike. The fact that you have no derailer hanger on the dropout amazes me. I saw another one like that on eBay, but it still amazes me. I expect to see that only on low end bikes. It's a good thing in a way, because you're not stuck with using that POS Simplex derailer. You can use anything that has a claw.

I can't tell from the pictures if you have the correct hubs. They should be Normandy Luxe Competition. They're good hubs.

Please take that heinous saddle off!

As far as dating goes, I don't think anyone has ever been able to make sense of their serial numbers. It's definitely early seventies. That's as close as I've been able to come to dating mine.

By the way, I've never seen one with paint as good as yours.

Last edited by Grand Bois; 12-17-05 at 04:30 PM.
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Old 12-17-05, 05:16 PM
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Original spec rims were typically tubular Mavic Monthley. Saddles were generally Ideale, but supplied models varied widely. Having said that, I have seen them with other rims and saddles and I've seen several with Sugino cranksets like Sierra's.

It's definitely pre-1974, though I can't say by how much.
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Old 12-17-05, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by italianbiker
sierra, would you have a pic of the criterium derailleur? i would like to see what they looked like. the orig. was a prestige and i had another one laying around so it aligned nicely.
I don't have one at hand, and my bikes are salted away in a friends basement for the winter. A google search or ebay search should turn something up. My Criterium rear der. looks very similar to your Prestige except that the name badge is black letters surrounded by a white field under some thickish clear plastic. I think there is more metal in the parallelogram than in the Prestige. Someone here is bound to know more about the differences. On the front der. I think they were the same except the Criterium had a chromed front clamp band and better chroming on the cage. Your front may be a Criterium, I can't really tell from the pic. A lot of people bad mouth the Simplex derailleurs but I have the Criteriums on one of my TdF's and another set on an early seventies PX-10. I think they shift pretty well. Certainly no worse than Campy Nouvo Record which I put on my other TdF. On the PX-10 I'm running 52/38 in the front and a 14-28 Suntour ultra 6 in the rear. The Simplex derailleurs handle it quite well.
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Old 12-19-05, 02:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Blue Order
What a find! Incredible condition-- it almost looks new!
thanks for the compliment. the paint looked bad, but i tell you what i used. i rinsed of the bike and washed with maguires gold car wash. afterwards i used zymol car wax-cleaner.( i have the maguires but the zymol was opened) btw costco has the maguires. the front deraill. broke so i figured just polish clean up the areas that im working on. actually i ended going over the right shifter and as you can tell from the pix the right is much nicer than the left shifter. the cleaner cleaned off 20 years of garage storage. i went over the right fork and left rear stay and that cleaned well. i didnt want to use rubbing compound, since i figured that might be to strong of an abrasive, but so far so good. the top tube had a lot of rust and scratched pain under the clamps. they were clampled to one side over the tail of the sticker service course. the cleaner did a nice job, just needs some elbow grease and keep at it. after about five min. on the top tube the shine and surface contaminants started to break freee
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Old 12-19-05, 02:54 AM
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as far as no integral derailleur hanger. i have picked up some interesting info from internet chatter (gitane spies). that early 70's did not use them. they started using it during the mid to late 70's and stopped the practice altogether.

re: gitane

"Circa 1970 TdF's did not come with derailleur hangers, and no Gitane's
used the wrap-around seat stays."


here is some interesting reading:
"Based upon my conversations with said proprietor, I was given to
understand that Cycles Gitane came to realize that the Tour de
France name had more cache in the U.S. market than did the moniker
Super Corsa, despite the latter being their more
expensive "flagship" model (...and this would seem to hold true to
some extent even among contemporary collectors). As a result, they
had attempted to "bridge" the two models with a hybrid of sorts.
Basically, on a very limited scale they took spare SC framesets
which they already had on hand, badged them as TdF models, more or
less equipped them as they would a TdF (...i.e. Stronglight cranks
with Lyotard pedals, Stronglight headset, Simplex seat post, with
the optional Campagnolo hubset), but by virtue of the dropouts being
the Campy 1010 variety, affixed Campagnolo shifters as well as front
and rear derailleurs rather than the Simplex grouping normally found
on an early TdF. The result was that Cycles Gitane could command a
premium price at retail begot of name recognition for these "super"
TdF models while at the same time maintaining a significantly lower
relative production cost in relation to the SC due to the use of
select "homeland" components as compared to the more expensive Campy
fittings found on the latter. With respect to this "story" as it
was related to me so long ago, I would be most interested in hearing
from any one of you folks out there who have access to various
Gitane dealer catalogs produced during the late 1970's and 1980's to
confirm exactly when the SC was dropped from their lineup as opposed
to when the TdF was ultimately withdrawn."

this was frame the gitane yahoo site
"
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Old 12-19-05, 06:43 AM
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Originally Posted by italianbiker
ahhh, makes sense. yeah it took forever to get it back into the first hole. then i did not have it aligned properly and missed the back hole, pushing the last plate out. maybe i can still save it. i will try and remove it once more and rebend the plate. it still rides nice but i think it will break off soon.... learning curve.
You can probably eliminate one link from the chain and have no problem with shifting, etc. Most factory chains are sized a little too big anyway. You'll find it much easier to repair the single link if it is away from the bike, too, although I wouldn't expect great results from that kind of repair.
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Old 12-19-05, 09:21 AM
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What a beautiful find and a great job on the restore. Did you wax by hand, or use a rotary buffer? That ride has years and years ahead of it.

BTW, I think (but not certain) that Eddy Merckx's first TdF win was in '69 on a R531 Gitane.
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Old 12-19-05, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by oldcrank
What a beautiful find and a great job on the restore. Did you wax by hand, or use a rotary buffer? That ride has years and years ahead of it.

BTW, I think (but not certain) that Eddy Merckx's first TdF win was in '69 on a R531 Gitane.
I believe you are mistaken:
http://www.gitaneusa.com/racing.asp
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