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new member seeking guidance regarding vintage roadster/hybrid purchase

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new member seeking guidance regarding vintage roadster/hybrid purchase

Old 07-03-12, 08:37 PM
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Torquemada
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new member seeking guidance regarding vintage roadster/older hybrid purchase

I am new to the forums and need some guidance. I'm a novice cyclist, but a recent trip to Amsterdam and Copenhagen has fueled my long-standing desire to bike to/from the bus stop for work, and to bike more around town and on the local greenway trails.

I'd like to buy something fairly inexpensive ($150 or so) in need of work, preferably vintage without much collector premium, and upgrade/repair as necessary to have a solid everyday commuter/city bike that's reliable.

This week I am going to start volunteering at a local bike co-op so I can get some experience maintaining bikes, and my hope is that in a few months time my experience gained there, as well as the access to tools and expertise, will allow me to complete most if not all of the upgrades and repairs that my new bike might need.

The roadster style with fenders, chainguard, back rack, and upright handlebars is what I'm ultimately shooting for. I am thinking of trying to get there one of two ways, either a late 60's to early 80's vintage roadster, or an 80's to 90's era hybrid, preferably with lugged frame, to which I can add fenders, chainguard, etc.

So far I like the looks of these roadsters:

Schwinn Suburban
Schwinn Collegiate
Raleigh Sports

And for hybrids, I like the looks of:

Trek MultiTrack
Univegas
Fujis
Nishikis
Raleighs

Are there any other specific roadster or hybrid models I should keep an eye out for? I've been checking places like craigslist and plan to branch out my search some more, but I thought I'd ask for some tips. Thanks!

Last edited by Torquemada; 07-04-12 at 05:35 AM. Reason: title clarity
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Old 07-03-12, 10:28 PM
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Welcome to the Forum! The Raleigh Sports isn't really a roadster, the DL1 or Tourist is the Roadster which is a bit heavier, the angles are more relaxed and would have rodbrakes instead of cables. For something in the $150 range shop around a bit, look for good components, there are alot of bikes that could be configured to what you are looking for. At present, you are ging to pay a premium for a R. Sports or Tourist or any English upright since they are a bit popular as of late. Shop around and post what you find and there will be more than enough suggestions to getting going in the right direction. Most importantly, have fun with the hunt!
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Old 07-03-12, 10:29 PM
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i don't think there was such thing as a vintage hybrid or i guess you're talking about the 3 speed stuff. Just keep scanning craigslist and kijiji and something should come up. I'd be worried more about fit then brand.
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Old 07-03-12, 11:51 PM
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From 1990 when the Trek Multitrack first came out until I believe 1993 the 750/790s were built of lugged True Temper tubing at the Waterloo, WI plant. Same geo as the 520 and in some years the same tubing.
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Old 07-04-12, 05:46 AM
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Thanks for the warm welcome! In regard to the hybrids I'm looking for, I am just looking for an older model, not necessarily vintage. I just really like the looks of the late 80's-early 90's models of the brands I mentioned. I think it has a lot to do with seeing some of those bikes around my college campus back in the early 90's and really liking them (and wishing I could afford one). Now it seems I might be able to get my wish after all, if I find the right one. I am particularly drawn to the Trek Multitrack and the Univegas. There was a nice looking Univega Hybrid (early 80's I think) for sale last week on cragislist for about $120 that I would have gone after had the color not turned me off.

And in regard to the roadsters, I just meant a roadster-style and perhaps not a true classic roadster. The DL1 is a great looking bike but as was mentioned, the ones I have seen have been a bit pricey for my tastes. There was a nice looking early 80's Raleigh Sports on the local craigslist here just this weekend for $75. I hadn't done much research on them but my gut was telling me that was a good deal, so I messaged the guy immediately. Even though the ad had only been up 3 hours by then, I still missed out.

I'll keep looking, though, and if anyone has any suggestions for specific models that I might investigate, I am all ears!
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Old 07-04-12, 05:58 AM
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Any bike at $100 or less is not going to last long. Around here, maybe 15 minutes if it is a bike shop brand in good condition. You've got to move lightning fast.

All of the roadsters you mentioned have a nostalgia premium.

Univega did have have a hybrid in the early 1980s. Also, I like Univegas a lot, but realize they did not make a single bike, they out sourced all of their production. They were a sales and marketing company, that did pick good partners to build bikes for them. I have owned quite a few Univegas, and I have one in the keeper fleet right now.

Older multitracks should be available at an attractive price, and have the benefit of lighter weight and better components.

Last edited by wrk101; 07-04-12 at 06:02 AM.
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Old 07-04-12, 09:14 AM
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Thanks for the info wrk101. If I hadn't been outside working I would have seen the ad sooner. But I learned my lesson and check CL much more frequently now. It's great to get some idea of what the pricing is like here in NC though.
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Old 07-04-12, 09:28 AM
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For daily riding, it's hard to beat a hybrid. They have zero collector value. Your list is a good one. Don't overlook the possibility of fitting smooth tires to an old mountain bike.
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Old 07-04-12, 09:45 AM
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I think I am starting to lean toward the hybrid route. I had actually thought about getting a rigid mountain bike and putting smooth tires on it but I thought I would try to find a hybrid first. Is there a noticeable difference between 700c and 26" tires that might compel me to choose one over the other, or at my experience level would I even notice?
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Old 07-04-12, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Torquemada View Post
I think I am starting to lean toward the hybrid route. I had actually thought about getting a rigid mountain bike and putting smooth tires on it but I thought I would try to find a hybrid first. Is there a noticeable difference between 700c and 26" tires that might compel me to choose one over the other, or at my experience level would I even notice?
I would let the deal decide. Look at the various drop bar MTB conversions on the thread I started. It shows that you can really give a vintage MTB good street manners with a handful of parts and creativity. Vintage MTBs and hybrids get no respect, so that can mean a bargain as a buyer. So either one can make a good choice.

Personally, I much prefer drop bars versus flat bars, mainly for the myriad of hand position choices. There are various options for adding hand positions on flat bar bikes, I am liking the drop bar conversion right now. The cheapest option for more hand positions is a "trekking" bar. I have bought a few sets of them at Nashbar on sale, for under $20.

Commuter bike with steel rims? I wouldn't go there, stopping is less than ideal, and commuting = need to be able to stop quickly.

Last edited by wrk101; 07-05-12 at 09:31 AM.
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Old 07-04-12, 05:46 PM
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I'd go for the Raleigh Sports, the older the better, anything pre-'65 are garanteed to be excellent, the later models are of varying quality, but none are bad. These are British machines, and expect to be oiled (for bottom brackets, avoid dealing with cotters by adding oil down the seat tube, or a Bottom Bracket oiling port if available).

The Schwinns are more or less the same story, good quality. With the hub gear versions, look for Sturmey Archer or Bendix hubs, Shimano 3 speed hubs were crap until the 80s(Taiwanese built Schwinn 3-speeds are from the 80s, and are fitted with the better hubs). The derailer models are 1X5 affairs, the Huret derailers are not known for being terribly reliable, so feel free to swap for any other derailer.

The one thing the light roadsters do have as an issue is that they all have steel rims that don't brake all that well, replacement aluminium rims are available (Schwinn uses on occasion oddball rim sizes, but these are close enough to Raleigh's 590 ISO rim size that swapping to this size is not an issue).

Lovely Bicycle has a much through article on this: http://lovelybike.blogspot.com/2010/...intage-vs.html I do comment that Raleigh rims with the center ridge (the so called Westrick or Raleigh pattern) are a 1 to 1 swap for CR-18 rims, and the same spokes can be reused.

You could ask, answering craigslist ads for other bikes, if the seller has 3-speeds hanging around as well, you could strike a bargain, either just the 3-speed, or as a 2 for 1 deal.
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Old 07-05-12, 09:11 AM
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So I was setting up some list alerts for craigslist this morning and stumbled on an old ad for a 1994 Bianchi Project 3 with STX components for $175. It's got the lugged frame I am after and I really like the aesthetics of it. I'm sure it's long gone as the ad is over a month old but had I seen it new, I would have been very interested. Would this have been a good price to pay for that bike?
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Old 07-05-12, 09:19 AM
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I built this with a neighbor in mind, but if he doesn't want it I am going to ride it, a Cignal Kokomo Hybrid ( Cheap hybrid) with a roadster/cruiser feel to it. It has full fenders with 700x40's stuffed under them, a rear rack and big springer seat plus a set of small cruiser bars make it a comfortable ride. It is a 3x7 drivetrain that is more then enough for our flat land around here. I would like to build something a little nicer & lighter for myself but this will work for a while if it becomes mine.

Glenn


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Old 07-05-12, 09:03 PM
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I like how that bike looks Glenn. That's pretty much the look I am shooting for except I might try something a little more aggressive with the handlebars.

Does anyone have any input on the Bianchi bike I mentioned in my previous post? I'm just trying to establish a baseline for what might or might not be a good deal if/when something similar comes along. I did some research and the Project 3 was the lower end of the Bianchi "Project" series, and originally retailed for $600, whereas the project 5 had nicer components and frame and retailed for $900. I am thinking that Project 3 I mentioned might be more of a $125 or $150 bike priced fairly, but if anyone else has any thoughts I am happy to be corrected.
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