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Volkscycle? Anyone?

Old 04-22-06, 10:40 AM
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duane041
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Volkscycle? Anyone?

Another day at the thrift, another neat-o bike. A Volksycle Mark IV for $9.19. (they price things weird over there). Rides pretty nice, just can't find any information anywhere on it's background. Has low-end Shimano (Thunderbird and Eagle components, sounds like F-Troop), but nice chromey randonneur bars. Also, the headbadge (although plastic) looks rather similar to the badge that VW used on it's "Wolfsburg Edition" cars in the 80's and 90's. Hmmmm. And check out the sexy () lugwork. Whoo hooo!!!!!

Anyone have any ideas?

Edit: Forgot to add, frame is Made in Japan from SWB Steelight tubing. And it has a generator (a French sounding brand that I can't remember right now) that works off the tread of the rear wheel, as the generator itself is mounted to the bottom bracket. And it works, too.
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Old 04-22-06, 11:33 AM
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I found a Volskcycle Mk VII (a surprisingly tall step-through frame) last year with similar sounding components to what you have. I read somewhere on-line that back in the 70's former Schwinn dealers banded together and were selling these.
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Old 04-22-06, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by duane041
And it has a generator (a French sounding brand that I can't remember right now)
Soubitez?
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Old 04-22-06, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by mswantak
Soubitez?
I think that's it! The headlight is mounted to the fork, similar to where a front reflector would be, which I found odd.
By the way, no prize for the correct guess, sorry.
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Old 04-24-06, 02:36 PM
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They were a US-based marketeers scheme to cash in on the Volkswagen aura with a Japanese made bike during the height of the bike-boom. I'm pretty sure it was a West Coast importer, maybe LA Calif. and typical bike was a pretty horrid gaspipe monster. Though they might have improved a little as they went along. Reminded me of another marketing special of the '70s that I'm pretty sure originated in LA: the Campania...a cheap Japanese bike along the lines of the Centurion LeMans, but with all kinds of Italian flag details so the masses would think they were buying something from Naples. You can fool some of the peeps etc., etc.
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Old 04-24-06, 09:37 PM
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I think it was 1970 that the local Schwinn dealer carried Volkscycle, a lugged frame and Shimano gears were the draw. It was either Wilson Sales or Western States that brought them in, colors reminded me of Cool Lemon and that light green that Schwinn had at the time.

A neighbor bought a Campania, he was sure it was made by Campagnolo. I kept quiet, he was happy.
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Old 04-24-06, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by unworthy1
They were a US-based marketeers scheme to cash in on the Volkswagen aura with a Japanese made bike during the height of the bike-boom. I'm pretty sure it was a West Coast importer, maybe LA Calif. and typical bike was a pretty horrid gaspipe monster. Though they might have improved a little as they went along. Reminded me of another marketing special of the '70s that I'm pretty sure originated in LA: the Campania...a cheap Japanese bike along the lines of the Centurion LeMans, but with all kinds of Italian flag details so the masses would think they were buying something from Naples. You can fool some of the peeps etc., etc.
I wondered about the quality of the bike, as this bike sported a "Bud's Bike and Mower" sticker on the seat tube. Mowers and bikes.......

Thanks for the info. The bike isn't ridiculously overweight, so it will most likely become a single-speed cruiser.
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Old 04-24-06, 10:47 PM
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Originally Posted by duane041
Mowers and bikes.......
C'mon now; don't be a snoot. Combinations of that sort are pretty common in small towns; at least they're both mechanical devices.
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Old 04-25-06, 07:00 AM
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I dragged my Volkscycle Mk VII out of the garage over the weekend, and pieced it back together to donate to a charity collection. The head badge says Made in West Germany, and while it is certainly not a high quality bike, I've had much worse, also heading off to the charity collection this week, or long since disposed.
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Old 04-25-06, 04:54 PM
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Originally Posted by mswantak
C'mon now; don't be a snoot. Combinations of that sort are pretty common in small towns; at least they're both mechanical devices.
I suppose that "Bud's Barber and Bikes" would have been worse.
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Old 04-25-06, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by mpfgc
I dragged my Volkscycle Mk VII out of the garage over the weekend, and pieced it back together to donate to a charity collection. The head badge says Made in West Germany, and while it is certainly not a high quality bike, I've had much worse, also heading off to the charity collection this week, or long since disposed.
Take a pic of that badge and post it, it also helps answer the post that asked about why no German made bikes...
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Old 04-25-06, 05:11 PM
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Velo Schauff is a German made bike
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Old 09-06-06, 11:57 AM
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I figured I'd resucitate this thread with my recent discovery of the old Volkscycle sales brochure I got when I bought my Mark XX back in the 70's. The Mark 100 and Mark XX were both double butted cro-mo frames, while the Mark XV and Mark X were made from a lower end straight gauge tube. My Mark XX frame weighs in at just under 5 lbs fully stripped, and the tubes have a nice ring when snapped with a fingernail. Not bad bikes for their time, a decent mix of components at a fair price, I still also have my sales receipt for $157. Also made for a comfy touring ride, with a long rear triangle. I'm in the process of getting mine ready for professional repaint, the last homebrew job is showing its age. Still debating going with the factory paint scheme, or tricking it out a bit. I want to get decals based on the originals, and have been searching for sources.

Anyway, enough of my blathering. If you want to see the sales brochure pages, with pictures and all the specs, go to https://home.houston.rr.com/bubbadog/

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Old 09-06-06, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by mswantak
C'mon now; don't be a snoot. Combinations of that sort are pretty common in small towns; at least they're both mechanical devices.
Yeah - you used to be able to buy Thompson sub-machine guns at the local hardware store.
Ahhhhhh..... the good ole' days!
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Old 09-06-06, 01:34 PM
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Hey, don't laugh about combinations. The best Triumph motorcycle shop in VA (heck, east of the Mississippi) is MillerBuilt Small Engines in Lynchburg. Their primary line is Toro/Wheel Horse lawn and garden, dealing primarily to the professional trade.

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Old 09-06-06, 02:26 PM
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For those interested, the pictures of the bikes were taken at Point Defiance Park in Tacoma Washington.

For the Mark XV, the background area (across the bay) is where I lived at the time the picture was taken.

My friends and I rode our bikes to and through that park several times... But none of us had bikes that nice.

B'Dog, thanks for the nostalgic moment!
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Old 09-06-06, 05:45 PM
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Darwin,

Growing up in the SF Bay Area, and with JWB being in SoCal, I always thought the pix were snapped in my neighborhood or in SoCal. Now my dreams are dashed once again ....

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Old 09-07-06, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by BubbaDog
Darwin,

Growing up in the SF Bay Area, and with JWB being in SoCal, I always thought the pix were snapped in my neighborhood or in SoCal. Now my dreams are dashed once again ....

B'Dog
The Bay Area (where I lived for over 20 years) and the Seattle/Tacoma area (where I lived for most of my first 18 years) are very similar.

The two obvious things that made it jump out at me:

1) Mt. Ranier.

2) The Tacoma Narrows Bridge. This is the bridge that replaced the one that can be seen in the famous film twisting and collapsing in the wind back in 1940. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacoma_Narrows_Bridge

By the way, due to increased traffic, they are in the process of adding a second suspension bridge beside the existing bridge.

The only thing that could have made it better was to go a few miles away and take a shot with my High School... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stadium_High_School

OK, now I am home sick!
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Old 09-07-06, 04:45 PM
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Originally Posted by BubbaDog
I'm in the process of getting mine ready for professional repaint, the last homebrew job is showing its age. Still debating going with the factory paint scheme, or tricking it out a bit. I want to get decals based on the originals, and have been searching for sources.

Anyway, enough of my blathering. If you want to see the sales brochure pages, with pictures and all the specs, go to https://home.houston.rr.com/bubbadog/

B'Dog
First of all, thanks a big bunch for posting the catalog. That rocks!
Secondly, take a look at what I decided to do with my VolksCycle. You may find it interesting, or disturbing.
https://homepage.mac.com/wagonwaller/...toAlbum30.html
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Old 09-07-06, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by duane041
I wondered about the quality of the bike, as this bike sported a "Bud's Bike and Mower" sticker on the seat tube. Mowers and bikes.......

Thanks for the info. The bike isn't ridiculously overweight, so it will most likely become a single-speed cruiser.
There is a guy in town who puts helper motors on bicycles--haven't seen him around recently. I could see a crossover between bikes and mowers. He might use lawn mower motors for powering bicycles but his bikes are quieter than most mowers.
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Old 09-07-06, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by duane041
First of all, thanks a big bunch for posting the catalog. That rocks!
Secondly, take a look at what I decided to do with my VolksCycle. You may find it interesting, or disturbing.
https://homepage.mac.com/wagonwaller/...toAlbum30.html

Duane,

I saw your paint work in your original post, it looks extremely sweet. The one thing I can't find anymore is my headbadge, I took it off when I did my second paint job and haven't seen it since ....

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Old 02-22-07, 09:18 PM
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I was given this VolksCycle Mark 5 today. This thread was a big help identifying what the hell it is!! Its loaded with custom accessories too!!!!! Cheers

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Old 02-22-07, 11:05 PM
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Originally Posted by duane041
I wondered about the quality of the bike, as this bike sported a "Bud's Bike and Mower" sticker on the seat tube. Mowers and bikes.......

Thanks for the info. The bike isn't ridiculously overweight, so it will most likely become a single-speed cruiser.
all the local auctions around this way put bikes in the lawn and garden section. some do wind up being lawn decor , what a shame for a schwinn paramount
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Old 02-23-07, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by duane041
I wondered about the quality of the bike, as this bike sported a "Bud's Bike and Mower" sticker on the seat tube. Mowers and bikes.
Back in the day every small engine shop was also a bike shop! To this day the LBS still get calls from people asking if they can bring in their lawn mower for repair. My father was a Fireman and worked at Sears as a second job and he worked on lawn equipment and bicycles.
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Old 02-23-07, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by BroMax
There is a guy in town who puts helper motors on bicycles--haven't seen him around recently. I could see a crossover between bikes and mowers. He might use lawn mower motors for powering bicycles but his bikes are quieter than most mowers.

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