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Ben Lawee design Univega Gran Touring is here!

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Ben Lawee design Univega Gran Touring is here!

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Old 04-10-11, 08:56 AM
  #1  
jish1969
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Ben Lawee design Univega Gran Touring is here!

It looked too small in the CL ad but i figured it would be worth the trip out to the Finger Lakes, and it certainly was. I have finally found the tourer I have been seeking for 2+ years!!!I am figuring it to be around a 1986 but that is only a guess since there isn't much I can dig up on Univega online. Heres what it is so far:

-Tange Triple-butted chromoly frame/chromoly fork-made in Taiwan
-Shimano Bio-pace triple crank-48-38-28
-Shimano Deore derailleurs, levers and cantilevers
-Araya 36h rims, Sansin quick release hubs
-6 speed casette(not sure what it is yet)
-Blackburn rear rack
-Nitto stem
-Sakae Randonneur handlebars
-Cateye Velo-5 computer-works
-Cannondale handlebar bag with bracket
-SKS fenders

I am going to replace the cables, housings, and bar tape but all this machine really needs is a new seatpost and a front rack to be tour-ready. I will probably opt for some Cane Creek SCR-5 levers though for added comfort but all this for $195 is not bad at all. Here are the before pics, and afters are not going to come for about another week as organic chemistry is currently kicking my a$$. And also, kudos to the seller for holding the bike for what seemed like an eternity to me. Enjoy!
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Univega Gran Touring 003.jpg (100.6 KB, 256 views)
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Univega Gran Touring 004.jpg (95.8 KB, 266 views)
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Univega Gran Touring 005.jpg (72.7 KB, 259 views)
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Univega Gran Touring 006.jpg (100.5 KB, 279 views)

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Old 04-10-11, 10:09 AM
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Nice bike! Very practical.
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Old 04-10-11, 11:11 AM
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Great find! I've always like the Lawee Designed Univegas. The hybrids (Activa Trail) from the late 80's/early 90's make great city bikes when properly outfitted.
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Old 04-10-11, 11:35 AM
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If anyone has a link or some scans to some Univega catalogs that would be tops. I am pretty sure its all original but I wanna see what other options there were...
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Old 04-10-11, 11:54 AM
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Vintage tourers are so useful & pleasant, even if you don't load them heavy for self supported expeditions.

Nice find.
Give us a ride report later.
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Old 04-10-11, 01:00 PM
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beautiful bike. we sold lots of Univegas but never stocked the tourer, the boss and his cronies had a thing for the Fujis. it looks and sunds like a pretty typical kit from those days

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Old 04-10-11, 02:05 PM
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Just lubed up the chain and taking it out for a spin in a bit-Hey Bianchigirl do you have a year in mind for this? A little internet research led me to think its an 86, but now I'm thinking it could be newer than that...
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Old 04-10-11, 02:13 PM
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'86/7 sounds right judging from the exposed brake cables and the style of the RD but I am no Univega expert
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Old 04-10-11, 03:10 PM
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My blue twin! Serial number should be on the bottom bracket, first letter is the year of production. I'll post up my grand touring later, I love that bike.
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Old 04-10-11, 03:21 PM
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J = 1981
K = 1982
L= 1983
M = 1984

and so on.



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Old 04-10-11, 03:37 PM
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I had one and let it go, I now regret it... thanks pal.
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Old 04-10-11, 04:05 PM
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Just got back from an 8-10 mile ride, and this thing feels great! Im gonna have to get some Cane Creek SCR-5 levers because riding the hoods on the stock Shimano's just feels awkward, especially how they turn inward on the rando bars. I was trying to pay attention to see if there were any subtle differences in the Bio-pace crank since this is my first experience with it but it felt great and had no problems with the indexing either(also a first). I am not gonna be able to do anything to it until the middle-end of the week, but I am going to order some Schwalbe Marathons, blue bar tape, an aluminum seatpost and a front rack in the meantime...Turnaround should be pretty fast after that-one solid day of cleaning and a case of Yuengling!
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Old 04-10-11, 05:39 PM
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[QUOTE=JReade;12486725]J = 1981
K = 1982
L= 1983
M = 1984

and so on.

25in frame with 27in tires? Just my size.
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Old 04-10-11, 07:07 PM
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[QUOTE=escii_35;12487203]
Originally Posted by JReade View Post
J = 1981
K = 1982
L= 1983
M = 1984

and so on.

25in frame with 27in tires? Just my size.
Yep.

I've got another 25 inch frame but with 700c tires.
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Old 04-11-11, 05:52 AM
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Just checked the BB, it starts with an M so i guess its an '84...
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Old 04-21-11, 05:26 PM
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So far:
I'm having some fender clearance issues with the Bell Platinum kevlar tires but its looking good at least...
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Old 04-21-11, 06:40 PM
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I could probably PayItForward some Univega toe straps. See if I can scare 'em up.
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Old 04-21-11, 07:32 PM
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I would be quite interested in taking a look at those Shaneferd, let me know if we can work something out...

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Old 03-12-19, 11:47 PM
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Wanted to bump this old thread. Been reading about the Univegas and a friend has a Gran Touring that just says triple butted cromoly and cromoly fork and rear stays. How does one determine if this was a fabled Miyata-made Univega? What brand of tubing? Read that some people looked at the inside of the fork and found a Tange 2 stamp. Excited to learn more. Thanks,
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Old 03-13-19, 04:59 AM
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Miyata was, IIRC, the only company making "triple butted" tubing at that time, or pretty much any time. So the very fact that it has a sticker indicating that, tells you it was built by Miyata.
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Old 03-14-19, 05:13 PM
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Here's one resource for catalogs. https://univegacatalogs.wordpress.com/

Also, don't forget to read T-mar's Asian Serial Number 'sticky' that will help you decode year.. Asian Serial Number Guide

With that Unicrown fork, I'd suspect that it is much newer than an '84! FYI, the '84 catalog is at the first link I gave, and it looks nothing like yours.. Here's my late '83-built '84 model:




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Old 03-14-19, 05:22 PM
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I had not noticed the fork. I don't recall unicrown forks appearing until 1990 or so.
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Old 03-18-19, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
Miyata was, IIRC, the only company making "triple butted" tubing at that time, or pretty much any time. So the very fact that it has a sticker indicating that, tells you it was built by Miyata.
Was Miyata making frames in Taiwan? I just picked up a Gran Trouring that is very similar to the OP, but in Red with a silver seat tube and red forks. Sticker says triple butted and cromoly stays and fork. Same Shimano Biopace cranks, same shimano brakes, Shimoano Light action shifters and a Deore rear der. Stem is a little different. My Serial is M6-L08(?). Per the above serial number convention it would be an 84, but the 84 is not unicrown.

The 87 catalog as Tange Triple butted tubes but most of it is Suntour whereas the one I have is all Shimano.
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Old 03-18-19, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
Miyata was, IIRC, the only company making "triple butted" tubing at that time, or pretty much any time. So the very fact that it has a sticker indicating that, tells you it was built by Miyata.
Ishiwata and Tange both made triple butted tubing, in addition to Miyata's splined 3butted tubing.
Ishiwata provided tubing for all of fuji's private branded triple butted tubing that I've seen or read about.
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Old 03-18-19, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by justinsdrake View Post
Was Miyata making frames in Taiwan? I just picked up a Gran Trouring that is very similar to the OP, but in Red with a silver seat tube and red forks. Sticker says triple butted and cromoly stays and fork. Same Shimano Biopace cranks, same shimano brakes, Shimoano Light action shifters and a Deore rear der. Stem is a little different. My Serial is M6-L08(?). Per the above serial number convention it would be an 84, but the 84 is not unicrown.

The 87 catalog as Tange Triple butted tubes but most of it is Suntour whereas the one I have is all Shimano.
the Miyata built in Taiwan that I've seen was built on contract for Miyata. I would guess that's how Miyatabm handled their Taiwan frames- they were built on contract since Miyata was still building franes in Japan in the late 80s. Higher end bikes were from Japan and mid/lower tier were Taiwan, at least for some period of time.
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