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My Schwinn Voyageur 11.8

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My Schwinn Voyageur 11.8

Old 02-25-12, 09:58 PM
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LuckyChow99
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My Schwinn Voyageur 11.8

A couple months ago I picked up a 1981 11.8. I was looking for a good riding, faster bike than most in my stable. According to the specs, the bike weighed 26 lbs, which is about 8 lbs lighter than my lightest bike at the moment. I'm hoping for something a little faster that I can ride on some group rides. The "reboot" is coming along nicely. I thought I'd show some pics along the way and get some ideas from the forum.

The pic below is the bike when I bought it.



I dissassembled everything, serviced the head set, and the BB. I had to replace the BB, as it was pitted and I just couldn't get it smooth. Since I don't have the tools for BB work, and not actually experienced with all the nuances, I had my LBS install the new BB.

As all of you are aware, there is a lot of cleaning to be done. Here is one of the brakes after removing it. Pretty nasty. Of course I completely dissasemble the brakes, clean, polish, grease and reassemble them.



Here is an after picture. The one on the left hasn't been touched. The one on the right is after cleaning. This probably isn't a good representative picture --- this brake happens to have the best looking side towards the camera. But it was really bad on the back side.



Speaking of brakes, take a look at this reflector mount on the rear brake stay. That thing is heavy enough to mount a tag-a-long trailer on it. What was Schwinn thinking?



Here's a little something I made to grease the seat tube. Many of the newer seat post are very long now. I guess it's to accomodate the hybrid bikes which always seem to have way too much seat post showing. I bought a new seat post from VO and it's much longer than my original. So, to get grease way down into the seat tube, I made this "lil greaser". It's a paint stir, split into two pieces with a carpet knife. Then I cut an old towel up and hot glued it to the stick. Lube it up good with Park grease and you can get it way down into the tube. I used this on both of my Tourist restorations and it works well.



Here's the front fork after cleanup and installation of the front wheel. I put a caliper between the forks to measure the distance and to consider installing fenders. The measurement is roughly 48 millimeters.



Just for the heck of it, I made this same measurement on a frame that will get built next. It is a '85 Voyageur SP. I was shocked at the result. It is a full 10 millimeters narrower than the 11.8. I know the pic looks like the caliper is not fully extended, but it is hitting the lug midway inside the fork. If you drop off the lug, it measures 38 millimeters. I'm a bit shocked by this difference. I fully expected the SP to be much wider, as it is setup more like a touring bike than the 11.8. With this kind of clearance, I can't see how any fenders would ever fit on it.



Here's another shot from the front of the 11.8. I should have plenty of room to mount Honjo's from VO on this, shouldn't I?



The rear, I'm a bit more worried. It's awfully tight back there. If anyone has suggestions about how to mount a Honjo back here, I'm all ears.




So that's it for now. Another update soon.
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Old 02-25-12, 10:20 PM
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Those are 27" CR18's with 1-1/4" Paselas, aren't they?
I just ran into a similar situation on a current project and I ended up building new narrower M13 wheels for it. Now I'm just trying to decide on 1 or 1-1/8" tires for it - but I'm leaning toward the 1" tires for the additional clearance, even though I don't plan on installing fenders until sometime later.

Sun makes a 27" M13 rim if you are so inclined.
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Old 02-25-12, 10:20 PM
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Great pickup. You'll love it. My '81 11.8 is my first road bike. I've used it as a platform to try lots of components. Yes, 45mm Honjos will fit well. My first fender installation was on this bike.

Great pics and commentary. Looking forward to seeing more.

This pic was after about six months of reading the Rivendel website.



I've found this bike to be a cool platform to play with a lot of stuff. My bike, though, has developed a shimmy at 20+ mph. I bought a nice chrome fork with more rake so I can install a high quality headset, but haven't gotten around to it.









I had an '82 11.8 in the less common blue color for a while too.

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Old 02-25-12, 11:00 PM
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Originally Posted by auchencrow View Post


Those are 27" CR18's with 1-1/4" Paselas, aren't they?
I just ran into a similar situation on a current project and I ended up building new narrower M13 wheels for it. Now I'm just trying to decide on 1 or 1-1/8" tires for it - but I'm leaning toward the 1" tires for the additional clearance, even though I don't plan on installing fenders until sometime later.

Sun makes a 27" M13 rim if you are so inclined.
Auchen, great eye. You nailed it exactly. These were machine made CR-18's. Thanks for the info on the M13. I will keep those in mind if I have to do something different.

Colonel, since you've put fenders on your bike, were you running the original wheels and tires? The CR-18 wheel is the same width as the original (as measured by my caliper). The tire might be larger though (even though it says it's the same size). You know how these Pasela's are. By the way, I love your 11.8. It's the bike that inspired me to hunt mine. Like you, this is my first road bike. I'm looking forward to riding it.
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Old 02-25-12, 11:10 PM
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Thanks. I converted to 700c when I installed the fenders, so no experience with 27" wheels and fenders here. I've used Ruffy Tuffys and Challenge PR. I was careful in the fender install to allow for maximum tire clearance.
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Old 02-25-12, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by ColonelJLloyd View Post
Thanks. I converted to 700c when I installed the fenders, so no experience with 27" wheels and fenders here. I've used Ruffy Tuffys and Challenge PR. I was careful in the fender install to allow for maximum tire clearance.
When you converted to 700c, did you keep the original brake calipers?
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Old 02-26-12, 07:07 AM
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LC99, what was your process to "liven up" the paint? It looks fantastic...
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Old 02-26-12, 08:29 AM
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Mothers Carnauba Cleaner Wax is all that I use. It seems to do a great job.
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Old 02-26-12, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by LuckyChow99 View Post
When you converted to 700c, did you keep the original brake calipers?
I did not. I installed 610 center pulls. The originals should reach 700c rims
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Old 02-26-12, 09:26 AM
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The original calipers would not have worked on my '81 11.8 conversion to 700c, I used Tektros. Nice job LuckyChow99, I rarely see this model in the beautiful red hue!

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Old 04-24-13, 12:16 PM
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Can anyone here help me out? I have an 11.8 like the black one above. It was my grandfathers. Its my first road bike. I took it to the local shop, spend about $200 to "tune it up", new tires, chain etc. My grandfather never changed gears, and rode it to work every day for about 8 years, so it that is completely worn out. The bike shop says the best they can do is $75 and they have to replace the entire rear rim. My mind is telling me that I should replace the front rim if I'm going to replace the rear.

I'm hesitant to tear into it myself, I've never undertaken such a project. But I also don't want to end up $500 into a bike that's 30 years old. Is it too much to buy "Bike repair for dummies" and give this a shot?

Last edited by DMercer1980; 04-24-13 at 12:17 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 04-24-13, 07:10 PM
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Originally Posted by DMercer1980 View Post
Can anyone here help me out? I have an 11.8 like the black one above. It was my grandfathers. Its my first road bike. I took it to the local shop, spend about $200 to "tune it up", new tires, chain etc. My grandfather never changed gears, and rode it to work every day for about 8 years, so it that is completely worn out. The bike shop says the best they can do is $75 and they have to replace the entire rear rim. My mind is telling me that I should replace the front rim if I'm going to replace the rear.

I'm hesitant to tear into it myself, I've never undertaken such a project. But I also don't want to end up $500 into a bike that's 30 years old. Is it too much to buy "Bike repair for dummies" and give this a shot?
You could do that, but you might consider watching Craigs List for a bike with the same wheel size that is going cheap. Buy the bike and do a wheel swap
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Old 04-25-13, 08:22 AM
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I have a black 11.8 like the '81 pictured, and the stock brakes worked when I swapped in 700c rims.

My biggest problem with the bike is that the stem is smaller than most, so I have been stuck with the short extension for a long time. I may try sanding down an old stem to fit. How much work is that for the schwinn 7/8" stem?
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Old 04-25-13, 10:02 AM
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I also had a Black 1981 Voyageur 11.8 for a while as well. Never took any great pictures of it though. I converted to 700c and was running 28mm Pasela Tourguards. It was a very tight fit with the fenders. The stock brake calipers worked great, especially when paired with Kool-stops and aero levers (not pictured here).

Here is after mild clean-up, 700c wheelset, fenders. Prior to bar tape, aero brake levers, cables, and saddle.

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Old 08-08-16, 01:32 PM
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1980 bike...all original except for the consumables and saddle.

...
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