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Low-End Bike Collections

Old 09-16-19, 08:01 PM
  #76  
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Pic assist




And the policy is quite sound.

Originally Posted by GretaDog View Post
Found in a dumpster..
I was going to attach a sweet photo of the restoration but first post, so no pictures.
Pretty weak policy.
It's green with white tires and gold chain.
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Old 09-16-19, 08:11 PM
  #77  
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It is my belief that 70's era gas pipe specials will one day be the rarest of all breeds. They just won't survive.

First off, almost everyone hates them. They are disposed of like trash with no one giving them a second thought.

Secondly, the aftermarket upgrades, which replace the original components, cause remaining bikes to be less than original.

Thirdly, they are pretty cheaply made, so rust and corrosion is a real factor in their longevity, or lack thereof.

Having said that, I do not consider ANY bike from the Schwinn brand to be low end. I know I could not afford one. They were 2-3X the price I could manage. Also, when I got to ride one, it was like heaven on Earth. They were a breed apart.

Low end for me was a Royce-Union purchased when on sale at a local auto parts store. It had 26" wheels with no quick release. It was purple. Even Huffy and AMF were more expensive than my Royce-Union.
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Old 09-16-19, 08:32 PM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by Bad Lag View Post
It is my belief that 70's era gas pipe specials will one day be the rarest of all breeds. They just won't survive. First off, almost everyone hates them. They are disposed of like trash...
The problem is they're so strong, you just can't destroy the things. You gotta leave 'em out in the rain for, like, 30 years. They're like Christine.
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Old 09-16-19, 09:37 PM
  #79  
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Originally Posted by Bad Lag View Post
Low end for me was a Royce-Union purchased when on sale at a local auto parts store. It had 26" wheels with no quick release. It was purple. Even Huffy and AMF were more expensive than my Royce-Union.
Depends on perspective. My brother had a Royce Union. That was high end. I had an even cheaper mystery brand from the local discount mart. My neighbors had Huffys. Didn't stop us from going on long (25 mile) adventure rides when we were 10. I think my parents would be arrested for that now... A couple years later I had a Motobecane and was riding with the local bike club. Gots to start somewhere.
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Old 09-17-19, 12:03 AM
  #80  
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I'll give my take:

The Peugeot UO8 and its touring variant, the UE8 are low end bikes that deserve high recognition here. My UE8 rides well and smooth. Although heavy as heck, I can see myself taking it on a decent light tour somewhere and not having to worry about comfort as long as there are small hills and mostly flats. It just lacks the appropriate gearing for out of town use or climbing.

On top of that, the UE8 has wiring braze-ons for light generators. It's just an all around crazy cool bike (to me at least).

Also shoutout to low-end Apollo bikes up here in Canada.
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Old 09-17-19, 06:05 AM
  #81  
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My only legit C&V bike is a 1969-1970ish Pug UO-18. In many respects, it's the best-riding bike I own.



I need a white garage door picture, don't I?

For a brief period in time, I had a 1984 Schwinn World Sport, in drop tube frame. I bought it with a bent fork, and swapped in a yellow Fuji fork that matched the yellow accents on the frame perfectly. I rid the bike of the drop bars, installed a riser city bar with flat bar controls, and it was a really fun bike to toss around. This one really got me interested in the short reach frames common to "lady frames" and mixtes. Shortly after I sold this Schwinn, I found the Peugeot pictured above, and I really enjoy it.



I wouldn't turn up my nose at another Schwinn.
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Old 09-17-19, 06:25 AM
  #82  
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Here is my small Flandria foldiing bike (70's). Used to be white and belonged to my grandmother.
I decided some time ago to give it a new colorscheme... Yes it orange but it fits well with and in my trailer (also an oldie )

--> yes there is a MTB also in the back (but newer / late 90's)


My 70's Flandria folding bike


my oldie trailer
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Old 09-17-19, 11:53 AM
  #83  
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Low end is the only end for high theft places. Or make sure your other end stuff is super beat up, and carry around a chain that weighs more than a high end bike.
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Old 09-17-19, 06:19 PM
  #84  
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Here is a low end bike I bought on a online auction last week. It was dirty and had 2 flat tires , but had a neat fork mounted Miller light so I bid 4.00 and got it for 3.00. I got it home aired up the tires and a little cleaning , then went on a 9 mile ride, I think it had a easy life sitting in a garage and still rides decent. It is a Western Flyer made by Murray.
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Old 09-17-19, 10:53 PM
  #85  
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Originally Posted by Oldsledz View Post
Here is a low end bike I bought on a online auction last week. It was dirty and had 2 flat tires , but had a neat fork mounted Miller light so I bid 4.00 and got it for 3.00. I got it home aired up the tires and a little cleaning , then went on a 9 mile ride, I think it had a easy life sitting in a garage and still rides decent. It is a Western Flyer made by Murray.
Not sure how far you're willing to go for wrenching, but you can replace the front halogen bulb for an LED and it makes a big difference. If its the right size, maybe I can send you a couple to try.
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Old 09-18-19, 07:28 PM
  #86  
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Originally Posted by BikeWonder View Post
Not sure how far you're willing to go for wrenching, but you can replace the front halogen bulb for an LED and it makes a big difference. If its the right size, maybe I can send you a couple to try.
Thanks for the offer but i don't ride in the dark the light will be just for looks.
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Old 09-19-19, 08:45 AM
  #87  
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Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
These mid range bikes often don't get enough love what with folks like Cuda having a stash of Paramounts and others with some pretty spectacular rides.

These mid range bikes are built for daily driving day in and day out and do not pretend to be anything else... that in itself is something beautiful.
I'll quote 65'er in the hopes it'll bring him back, and I couldn't agree more. I'd like to have a grail bike but one in a large frame is hard to find. All mine are middle of the road to entry level, but they work fine for me in flatlandia. Updated my list to include the '75 Continental, one of the most fun rides I have if I'm riding solo, and even with the group on no-drop nights. The '84 Team Fuji now resides in Seattle with oldest daughter, so it's off.
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Old 09-19-19, 08:52 AM
  #88  
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One of my favorite bikes is a middling quality bike: a Sekine SHS 271. Nothing fancy but it gets the job done and it rides great. It has decent tubing (likely Tange no. 3) and decent components (early shimano stuff) but it is no high end bike. I also really like my mid 70s Peugeot UE 8 which is a "true" lower end bike; it's also a heck of a good riding bike:


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Old 09-19-19, 06:54 PM
  #89  
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Collection in the states is mostly Raleigh's: 2 Grand Prix 74 & 76; 3 SuperCourses, 73, 77, & 78; 1 RRA 80; 1 Grander Sportier getting gugieized with a Dawes Galaxy in my basement to be built and a Centurion Pro-tour (that doesn't count here) and here in Cambodia I have mostly low end Japanese reuzit bikes and another Centurion Pro-tour.
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Old 09-28-21, 10:17 AM
  #90  
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1984 Murry Baja with some upgrades like aluminum wheels and stand, 21 speeds with Shimano cassette and rear derailleur . Falcon (I know ) front derailleur.
197? Ross Professional , got it at auction with 7 other bikes for $250. unfortunately 2 hidden from the pictures were kids bikes I tossed
198? Schwinn World Sport Mixte came with the Ross
198? Schwinn World Sport for $10 at Estate sale
1970 Hiawatha 5 speed that looks like it was never used. $10

Late 60s Western Flyer single speed from dumpster behind LBS

Also have a bunch of English 3 Speeds from the 1940s and 50s but don't consider them low end
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Old 09-28-21, 11:33 AM
  #91  
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Hey... Lets not forget the Sears Ted Williams with the Austrian Puch frame hidden underneath. I would post a pic of mine but its a true FRANKEN-TED... Ha...
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Old 09-28-21, 01:23 PM
  #92  
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Holy cow! You people are worse than the folks on the classic telescope forum. I can, at least, count my number of bicycles. (Don't ask about the telescopes.)

You're making my day. Thanks!
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Old 09-28-21, 05:39 PM
  #93  
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All hail the Astroscan!!!


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Old 09-29-21, 02:46 AM
  #94  
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The gas-pipe bikes with the Ashtabula one piece cranks keep getting recycled annually in the Southeastern USA as College Campus Bikes. Heavy as hell, certainly but the one piece crank and simplicity of a five speed freewheel and strong chrome steel wheels and the typical WEINMANN / DIACOMPE side pull alloy calipers or no-name steel copy cat sidepull calipers, could not be any simpler. 40mm acorn nutted brake pads are widely available and extremely inexpensive. The BELL Pitcrew 600 CABLE SET is only approx $10 from Wallyworld stores and Walmart.com and Acehardware.com. You get everything that you need, ferrules, etc and both road bike type ends and the Mountain/Tourist ends that are shaped like an ASPIRIN tablet. YOU ONLY NEED A $17 (available online) Brake Cable Cutting Tool Pliers...no-name version that looks exactly like the name brand that costs more than four times as much. Tires are inexpensive in 590mm 26 x 1 3/8 and 630mm 27" and still widely available online. Schwinn 597mm 26 x 1 3/8 tires are made by KENDA and are not expensive......and everybody makes the 559mm 26"cruiser-mtn bike tires....
Most any basic Shimano type rear derailleur can get even the most abused POS old bike rolling again. There are NEW el-cheapo Chinese made copies of essentially the old Shimano Lark out there on the web that can be purchased for about $8 with the names, FALCON , and XUNDAH where the old 1968 to 1973 Lark would have had the name "LARK" across the chrome metal covering. Hell yeah, these retro, basic copies weigh way more than 300 grams but who the hell cares as they are more durable and rugged than the basic black Shimano units seen today on new $250 bikes. The newer basic black Shimano unit of today is a lot lighter and functions well and does index shifting well enough. The ancient steel gas-pipe bikes were friction and the retro looking, chrome steel derailleur copy of the old LARK still functions like a LARK, and that means those $8 new units will outperform an ALLVIT or any SIMPLEX unit. Sure, you can slap on any old lark type variant, Shimano Lark, Shimano Skylark, Shimano Eagle, right on up through the heavy basic low end Shimano RS rear derailleur of the early eighties '81-'85 on very basic low end 10 speeds, and they will be rolling reliably and any idiot can get the Low & HIGH limit screws adjusted near perfectly, and the cable hookup is incredibly simple. All of these are your typical old school hook mount, and they are heavy but well made and really durable, and they do shift reliably and are the least problematic of rear derailleurs because of steel construction. They can take a great deal of abuse, bike being thrown down, and banged around, this is exactly what you do want on a heavy steel CAMPUS CRUISER bicycle, because weight savings is just plain dumb because trying to save 168 grams on a 37 pound bicycle is just stupid, because if you really need a lightweight bicycle for racing, or fast pack rides, or triathlons, just buy a good bicycle that fits within that criteria.
--------------These ancient gas-pipe bicycles are popular Campus bikes simply because they are essentially worthless in market value and Quality Bicycles Are Often Stolen on Campus.........................probably the place with the most bicycle thefts per capita likely occurs on large University Campuses with a student enrollment of 18,000 to 40,000 students..........................There are students today that are riding some of the same bikes accross College Campuses in the USA today that folks that are now the same age today as their grandparents once rode on Campuses between 1968 and 1974.
The ancient gas-pipe bikes with One Piece Cranks are PERFECT CAMPUS bikes because they have very little or No Market Value and thus Thieves go for the recent. Bianchi's and Specialized bikes, As a student, or the tuition, board & all expense paying parent of said child off at college, you need not worry about the cost of replacing said campus bike. Sure, every student who cycles regularly is gonna have a good bicycle, if they are smart, it stays at home with the folks, unless perhaps they live off campus in a nice rented condo or nice spacious apartment where the Bianchi can be securely secured inside the locked apartment, but the "Beater GAS-PIPE one piece crank bike still serves as the CAMPUS BIKE because you sure as hell ain't gonna leave the Bianchi outside the Science Building, or The Library, or The VARSITY(old Ga Tech alums will understand.. place was a legend in Atlanta, near the ancient 1910 era Techwood dorms and the notorious Techwood Homes Housing Projects where chalk outlines were drawn on the streets about twice a day and gunfire, ambulances, and flashing blue police lights and POLICE LINE DO NOT CROSS barricades often with an ongoing gun battle.
Many folks do not even bother to bring back the CAMPUS Bikes, leaving them to some other undergraduate when they graduate. It is often easier simply easier to just leave said bike than to bring it back,......plus,.......you've already got the nice Bianchi at home to then take to your new city's apartment where you will be employed after graduation. Some folks don't bother to bring home their Campus Bikes each Summer, instead opting for just leaving it for anyone, and then bringing another durable gas pipe, market value zero, Campus Bike in September.
It happens all the time in Athens, Atlanta, Knoxville, Gainesville, Chapel Hill, Raleigh, Austin, Ann Arbor, and at smaller student population campuses.
Every student knows that you only need a RELIABLE bike with no great value that can also carry your beer if you're in Athens at a party school like GEORGIA but if you're 80 miles away at Ga Tech in Atlanta, you're always in the Library or the Science Lab, if you wanna remain in school through the end of the Semester and not flunk out.
Nerds majoring in Chemical Engineering or Party-Animals who major in basket weaving or rock n roll music appreciation, all certainly find that cheap but durable Gas Pipe One Piece crank Ten Speeds, Five Speeds, Single speed coaster brake beach cruisers, or whatever low buck durable bike does make for the ideal CAMPUS Cruiser.
There are many old farts who have sort of a retirement, side-hustle hobby, of annually rounding up as many of these GAS PIPE ten speeds, five speeds, etc, and then sorting them out at minimal expense and then offering them all at once when the student population returns to campus in the Fall. I know a guy that is now 73, he graduated from college in 1970, and he has been doing the CAMPUS bike side hustle hobby thing since he was 38 in 1986. My guess is that he supplies between 45 to 80 bikes, if not more, each season. He sells out all of his bikes within a week every year, usually within days. He owned a large very successful furniture store, now owned by his son and daughters, but he still uses one of company's warehouses to house the bikes and repair them. He has all the climate controlled space in the world that he'd ever need but there is only so much one person can do. He has fun doing it.

So yeah, the old gas-pipe bikes don't get any love from "cyclists" but they do fill a need as the least likely to be stolen, and least likely to require maintenance or repairs(most reliable & cost effective for Campus Bike Duty). ..............Sorta like Cockroaches, as they are hard To Exterminate, but Unlike Cockroaches, the old gas-pipe bikes are worth having around! Yeah, sure, if you are the proprietor of a local bike shop, you'll hate them and wish they were extinct and that all of them had gone to the dump years ago, because the ancient gas-pipes provide low cost reliable bicycles that ruin a potential market for consumers seeking decent bikes. Sure 85% of consumers seeking decent bikes will shop a LBS but maybe 10% to maybe 15% of those consumers seeking something decent will opt to go OLD, DURABLE, & LOW-COST until such time that they are certain of the bicycle hobby. If such durable old used inexpensive alternatives did not exist, then it is likely that the LBS would capture more bicycle sales, however currently given the Pandemic supply problems, they likely are already selling out of everything New that they bring on to the sales floor. Wallyworld & Tarjay, & Dicks have done a better job of securing inventory than the LBS have done, simply because of the large corporate structure and economies of scale. This will undoubtedly hurt some LBS even more as the big-boxes will have more units for X-mas 2021 and for Spring 2022 & Summer 2022 than probably what your own area's Local bike Shop will likely be able to secure from the manufacturers. It may be more of a Pandemic Shipping issue that keeps the LBS from receiving as many as they could actually sell, given the current demand. If ordinary consumers find the pickings slim at the LBS, they likely will pick something from Tar-jay or Wallyworld, and there is a good chance that the LBS has lost a potential customer for years............on the other hand, one can argue that ordinary customer will return soon to the LBS because the Tar-jay/wallyworld bike will let them down and either need replacement, or significant repairs. If, however, the Wallyworld/Tar-jay special proves to be reasonably decent enough and reliable enough for the basic purpose bicycling, then it is unlikely that those consumers will return to shop for a bicycle from a Local Bike Shop, until & unless they become much more seriously involved in "serious road cycling" in the gotta be like Lance except for the shots in the buttocks.
There is is a great-divide in the retail pricing on general purpose basic bicycles at the LBS versus very similar equipment at the Big Box Places. Sure, the LBS does it better but with respect to something simple and basic, a bicycle is a bicycle and the consumer does have excellent alternatives to the LBS for very basic bicycles.
Some folks seeking basic bikes also don't give a damn what the name on the bicycle frame.
You can have a lot of fun with any no-name bicycle!
People have been doing that now for more than a century.
......take da load off fanning..........Ah, well many bicycle riders don't concern themselves with The Weight, or the groupset or whether Silly Willie's Philly tour de France bike team is the compensated endorser of said bicycle. Girls just wanna have fun and Sally wants to Ride, and Bubba does too, and as a practical matter, the prudent choice is often the most affordable New box store bicycle or perhaps something old, but most folks would rather own something shiny and New, so they are usually off to Wallyworld, Tar-jay, Sams, Costco, Dicks, or Amazon for something decent enough to ride.

The ancient Gas-Pipe machinery's most valuable asset is being the least likely to be stolen and excellent durability in Campus use.
Nearly all of those College students already own a quality new LBS bicycle, or desire to purchase a new Bianchi or whatever from the LBS, and their gas-pipe bicycle is simply only a bike for Campus use, as it can be neglected, and stored outdoors in the elements without worry of theft , significant depreciation or impaired functionality. Once they no longer have a need for a Campus bike, then they will part ways with the gas-pipe bicycle, because low-buck, old and ordinary, no longer serves a realistic purpose for them, and oh, the horror of then being caught seen on such a POS bicycle once they have moved beyond college.....



It is cool to see that well preserved 1970 Hiawatha (Gambles Dept Store) 5 speed that appears to be the Murray ALPINE, or Huffy TOURISTER, which like the Columbia TOURIST V , and Ross EUROTOUR were the nearest domestic competitors to the SCHWINN COLLEGIATE five speed.
AMF also had a 5 speed at that time that was among those nearest domestic competition to the SCHWINN COLLEGIATE.
I cannnot recall the AMF bike's name, but it like the Murray, Huffy, Columbia, and Ross featured a ONE PIECE CRANK and steel 590mm 26 x 1 3/8 wheels/tire, tourist handlebars, a cushioned spring tourist saddle, FIVE SPEEDS, and typically chrome fenders, sidepull caliper brakes, and a stem shifter , and available in several frame sizes in both diamond and step through offerings. The AMF version was by far the JUNKIEST of those but it was functional enough.

If you love low-end, old stuff, and you enjoy a low buck project:
The ancient typical cruiser frame.......you know the famous cantilever design that everybody at one time copied from the 1938 Schwinn....that was the typical boys bike from 1950 to maybe 1966 (classified by C.A.B.E. freaks as a MIDDLEWEIGHT) and that featured 26" wheels , a coaster brake, and fenders.............find any such basic bicycle.....you don't want those with the goofy tanks or the useless springer forks that you wouldn't use anyway. The project would involve using the 26" (559 mm) wheels from a basic cheap eighties mountain bike with five speed freewheel. The project would involve using the old cruiser bike frame with a replacement fork that can accept a traditional basic side pull caliper brake assembly. You basically are gonna build something like a 1962 Schwinn Corvette 5 speed or a 2021 Pacific Cycle schwinn SANCTUARY 7 seven speed cruiser or the 2021 Kent BAYSIDE 7 Speed cruiser. The ancient '62 Schwinn Corvette 5 speed is valuable today but it has a crummy rear derailleur because there wasn't anything really good in a rear derailleur back in 1962. It may just be easier to go to Amazon, or Wallyland and just buy a Pacific Cycle or Kent 7 speed cruiser with 559mm 26" wheels and then just remove the existing badging/decals if needed--and/or--repaint the inexpensive bike to your liking and then perhaps make it look more authentically vintage by fitting used but nice 1950's or 1960's fenders, chainguard, stem, handlebars, and those German made bow pedals like seen on seventies Suburbans and other Schwinns in the sixties or the early seventies Krates, or the similar Chinese copies of today.
Vintage decal set, and quality vintage spring saddle, and old stem shifter and ancient chrome steel Shimano type derailleur and if you're detailled enough you can make it look straight out of 1972 and fool most of the CABERS that absolutely hate any cruiser type bike that was not made during the period when bikes were made in the USA.
It reminds me of a story that someone I met at a event told me. He said that he had heard that the final Schwinn bicycle ever to come off the production line has been lost. I asked him, how does he know that, as I would have guessed that someone might have thought about keeping it just to have it, even if it wasn't a valuable or desireable model. He claims that somebody in the family of the employee who got it, was regulary riding it and it was stolen when the person riding stopped and went inside some establishment, and some thief, who knew nothing about the bicycle, cut the lock and stole it. I doubt it would have had any value as the last Schwinn at least until many many more decades have passed but now supposedly the last bike may be in the hands of folks who have no knowledge that it is the final Schwinn, that is if it hasn't already ended up in a curbside trashpile or dumpster and is now buried at the landfill. It is a crazy story but one would seriously doubt that if some employee really went to the trouble of getting the final bike off of the production line would take it and use it as an ordinary bicycle if they really felt that the final Schwinn was worth having. One has to wonder how such a last bike claim could be substantiated as typically chronicling records and celebrating milestones occurs only when a company is celebrating times of prosperity with recent annual and quarterly profits and not during the miserable period when the company bites the dust and ceases to be an ongoing concern.
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Old 09-29-21, 05:36 AM
  #95  
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Concise as always, VS.
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Old 09-29-21, 08:02 AM
  #96  
mitchito
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I love this thread. I joined BF when I bought my first English 3 speed to go on the " For the Love of English 3Speeds" thread. Not at all interested in high end 5lb bikes anyway. I live in Brooklyn, NY and these bikes are great for the flat landscape here. I love the idea of taking something that someone was throwing away ofr selling for coffee money and making something of it. I especially like offbeat brands that I've never heard of. The Hiawatha, I bought in Nashville, TN . Here in the NE we didn't have Gamble department stores so this may be the only Hiawatha in a city of 8 million. Same goes for my Western Flyer. I almost bought a Tyler for $10. a polish bike that would be cool to have if only for it being cool to have. Anyway, I hope to see more posts and photos of cool ( or not) cheap old survivors.
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Old 09-29-21, 05:32 PM
  #97  
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My Murray ready to cruise the streets
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Old 09-29-21, 09:55 PM
  #98  
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Great thread

I will do what I can to keep it alive. I am big on value for money, and most of my bikes are more toward the "mid range" of the 1970s and 80s, but I rebuild bikes for a charity shop and I love returning the old steel bombers to service. I have a particular weakness for the Murray Alpine frame, which is the basis for the Western Flyer posted by Oldsledz in 2019 and the Hiawatha posted by mitchito in 2021. Easy to recognize by the tapered top tube. I haven't found a grail Alpine in my size yet, but I will someday.

The Alpines were well made frames intended to compete with European bike boom bikes, but they were too heavy. Murray must have thought the Alpine was going to be a big hit and made a ton of them, because they were eventually sold as every imaginable type of department store bike, at prices that were probably less than the cost of the frame.

I have a couple of interesting Free Spirit road bikes (not Alpines) that I am working on now. Will post pics when they are further along.
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Old 10-06-21, 04:59 PM
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Here are the Free Spirits, partly cleaned and reassembled to see whether they actually have a future as bikes before I put in the final few hours of work.




My best guess is that they are from the late '70s. They both say "made in Austria" but the frame construction is very different.

The Green one seems to be a decentish frame, and the fork even says 531. Most of the parts seem to be original (not saddle, tires, pedals).

The silver one is built more like a Huffy from the period, with the stays crimped and obvious welds. The crank, shifters, and brake calipers are probably original, but not the wheels or the upright handlebar setup.
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Old 10-06-21, 05:10 PM
  #100  
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My worst bike.

Here is my worst bike. The next day after I took this picture I put some really cheap plastic pedals that I got for free on it. Still needs a front tube and bar tape though. The geometry is whack, and so are those bars. Seat post is as high as it can go but I am still way too tall for it. I gotta love those cheap builds.
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