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1978 Davidson time capsule with 1st gen. Dura Ace EX

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1978 Davidson time capsule with 1st gen. Dura Ace EX

Old 03-04-13, 09:54 PM
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Alex Moll
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UDATED with custom milling!!! 1978 Davidson time capsule with 1st gen. Dura Ace EX

The second owner recently rolled this into Elliott Bay Bicycles. Neither he nor the original owner put many miles on this bike. The condition is amazing. Very hard to believe this bike has such low mileage. The original paint is amazing, and the 1st gen Dura Ace components look nearly NOS. Wow!

EDIT: 1st gen Dura Ace EX

Saddle, seat post, bars, and stem were changed by second owner, and will be replaced by something a bit more period correct, and/or that fit me a bit better.

Enjoy!







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Old 03-04-13, 09:58 PM
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Apparently the skewers aren't Dura Ace EX. Anybody happen to have a spare set you'd sell me?

Cheers,
Alex
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Old 03-04-13, 10:01 PM
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The bike is a mix of first generation and second generation Dura-Ace. But quite amazing shape.
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Old 03-04-13, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage
The bike is a mix of first generation and second generation Dura-Ace. But quite amazing shape.
Thanks - good to know. Care to speed up my learning curve? Don't know much about early DA, though I do intend to find out.
Cheers,
Alex
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Old 03-04-13, 10:19 PM
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Wow. You are a lucky guy. This just popped up on vancouver, bc CL... I don't have the space.. and can't justify and it would be a hassle for me to facilitate.

https://vancouver.en.craigslist.ca/va...656729282.html

Note that is it larger than 60cm, looks like a 62-63 cm to me.. (c-c)
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Old 03-04-13, 10:20 PM
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Lovely.
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Old 03-04-13, 10:27 PM
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Someday I want a Davidson.
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Old 03-05-13, 12:20 AM
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Extraordinary! Well done Alex. Three cheers for the diligent preservationists and oft-scorned wall-hangers. Without them, such bikes would no longer be lurking behind mouse clicks and garage sales doors for the rest of us to joyfully put to good use.

Originally Posted by repechage
The bike is a mix of first generation and second generation Dura-Ace. But quite amazing shape.
Originally Posted by Alex Moll
Thanks - good to know. Care to speed up my learning curve? Don't know much about early DA, though I do intend to find out.
Cheers,
Alex
Normally I would defer to repechage, but I'm not sure I see any 1st gen DA. There were a few variations within what's considered "1st generation"--for instance, on the cranks, first version came with outer-chain guard, and later an option for black faux-drillium rings. There were also some variations in black anodizing for many of the components (as was a common trend in the early 70s across most manufacturers). The earliest DA brakes were center-pulls, but the 1st generation group expanded to include sidepulls. Also, if I am not mistaken, the 1st gen DA group did not include a Dura Ace RD, but rather included a Shimano Crane RD. A Dura Ace RD did not exist until the "2nd generation"/Dura Ace EX group, specifically the RD-7200 came out in the late 70s. The EX group also marked the first appearance of DA stems and seat posts. The closest I see that might be 1st generation DA is the crankset, but the rings. and extractor bolt again point to it belonging to the later EX group. The more common EX crankset has somewhat more rounded edges to the arms, but there were also two versions of the DA EX group--the earlier version of the EX crankset more closely resembles the 1st generation (GA-200) crankset. The brakes are easily identifiable as EX due to the window in the caliper arm. The script on the levers is EX. Definitely EX FD due to the lack of windows. No telling on the BB from the photos, but I'd venture the bike was originally outfitted with a complete "first generation EX group" which also dates to '78. A couple years after the EX group came the aerodynamic AX group, which was similar to the EX group but also included the cool Delta-like brake calipers.

Better start setting up alerts and ISO threads for EX seat post and stem!

With all this talk about the parts, I don't want it to go unspoken that I adore the frame. The lug points and windows are very artfully done. I'm green with envy!
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Old 03-05-13, 12:48 AM
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Thanks Randy! I think you're right on. I've been perusing Velobase this evening, and it looks safe to say this was a Dura Ace EX "road ensemble." The 6 speed cassette is another obvious tell.
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Old 03-05-13, 01:19 AM
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Outstanding specimin. Just Beautiful.
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Old 03-05-13, 05:38 AM
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1978 Davidson time capsule with 1st gen. Dura Ace EX

That is a real gem of a bike, for sure. Frankly, with the components being serviceable I'd probably leave it as-is. Also, it is interesting that the paint is as clean as it is. My 1984 Davidson tandem is the same color and, strangely enough, has paint in nearly perfect condition with only one nick in the paint and it was actually ridden.
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Old 03-05-13, 05:52 AM
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Beautiful bike. Too bad while DA got more functional it got uglier.

Try Velobase, you might be able to pickup some of the details on the differences.
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Old 03-05-13, 06:46 AM
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Wonderful find. My size, too, just a triffle jealous. Ah, well. I have the same basic group, minus crank, on an old Eisentraut and it works well. Purty, too.
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Old 03-05-13, 08:21 AM
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Here's a neat pic of a bike very similar to mine, but with a far superior engine. Mark Pringle in the 1978 Red Zinger.

I chatted with Bill Davidson last weekend, and he mentioned this color was very popular.



I also just noticed that Mark has a right-front brake setup.
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Old 03-05-13, 08:44 AM
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Clean machine. Great acquisition Alex. I'm not surprised that was a popular color.
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Old 03-05-13, 08:45 AM
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Early Dura Ace anodizing is so gorgeous.

That's another beauty, Alex. Congrats! What model handlebar is that? I need one with a bend like that.
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Old 03-05-13, 08:53 AM
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Did you happen to ask Bill if the paint was Imron, Alex? I remember a few custom builders using that same color in the late 70's- 80's, I think. Very pretty.
If it is Imron, he really knew how to spray it.

Also, what size is it? That is one LONG stem.
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Old 03-05-13, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by gaucho777
Extraordinary! Well done Alex. Three cheers for the diligent preservationists and oft-scorned wall-hangers. Without them, such bikes would no longer be lurking behind mouse clicks and garage sales doors for the rest of us to joyfully put to good use.





Normally I would defer to repechage, but I'm not sure I see any 1st gen DA. There were a few variations within what's considered "1st generation"--for instance, on the cranks, first version came with outer-chain guard, and later an option for black faux-drillium rings. There were also some variations in black anodizing for many of the components (as was a common trend in the early 70s across most manufacturers). The earliest DA brakes were center-pulls, but the 1st generation group expanded to include sidepulls. Also, if I am not mistaken, the 1st gen DA group did not include a Dura Ace RD, but rather included a Shimano Crane RD. A Dura Ace RD did not exist until the "2nd generation"/Dura Ace EX group, specifically the RD-7200 came out in the late 70s. The EX group also marked the first appearance of DA stems and seat posts. The closest I see that might be 1st generation DA is the crankset, but the rings. and extractor bolt again point to it belonging to the later EX group. The more common EX crankset has somewhat more rounded edges to the arms, but there were also two versions of the DA EX group--the earlier version of the EX crankset more closely resembles the 1st generation (GA-200) crankset. The brakes are easily identifiable as EX due to the window in the caliper arm. The script on the levers is EX. Definitely EX FD due to the lack of windows. No telling on the BB from the photos, but I'd venture the bike was originally outfitted with a complete "first generation EX group" which also dates to '78. A couple years after the EX group came the aerodynamic AX group, which was similar to the EX group but also included the cool Delta-like brake calipers.

Better start setting up alerts and ISO threads for EX seat post and stem!

With all this talk about the parts, I don't want it to go unspoken that I adore the frame. The lug points and windows are very artfully done. I'm green with envy!
Yes, you are correct. The crank arm shape thew me at first glance. Shimano was pushing EX with DynaDrive but did make more common crank sets available that shared the first generation form with the updated associated parts.
This bike appears to have the initial offering of the freehub, a product that was ahead of its time. It was over a decade later for it to gain acceptance. I bought a NOS in the box set of these hubs a few years ago, for a modest price by today's market. For a bike that was almost all DA EX. If Shimano had not been playing with Uniglide chains at the time, they might have been the promotors of narrow "ultra" spacing and could have been a peloton force that much sooner.

I have been looking on and off for a pair of DynaDrive toe clips, the top of the line units were alloy and fragile.

The EX brakes do offer less flex than the initial version, I do not like the assembly scheme that much for the pivot though, visually cleaner but more work to adjust.
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Old 03-05-13, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by rootboy
Did you happen to ask Bill if the paint was Imron, Alex? I remember a few custom builders using that same color in the late 70's- 80's, I think. Very pretty.
If it is Imron, he really knew how to spray it.

Also, what size is it? That is one LONG stem.
The frame is 62cm C-T, which is the low end of my range. The 14cm stem would be okay, if the saddle to bar drop weren't so much (neck problems.) I'll need a stem a bit shorter, and a bit higher. I can ask Bill about the paint this weekend. It is a metallic - old school metal-flake that looks great in the sun. Love the mint green color. If you want to look at bigger pics, look here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/3915149...th/8529189467/

That's another beauty, Alex. Congrats! What model handlebar is that? I need one with a bend like that.
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Old 03-05-13, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by repechage
Yes, you are correct. The crank arm shape thew me at first glance. Shimano was pushing EX with DynaDrive but did make more common crank sets available that shared the first generation form with the updated associated parts.
This bike appears to have the initial offering of the freehub, a product that was ahead of its time. It was over a decade later for it to gain acceptance. I bought a NOS in the box set of these hubs a few years ago, for a modest price by today's market. For a bike that was almost all DA EX. If Shimano had not been playing with Uniglide chains at the time, they might have been the promotors of narrow "ultra" spacing and could have been a peloton force that much sooner.

I have been looking on and off for a pair of DynaDrive toe clips, the top of the line units were alloy and fragile.

The EX brakes do offer less flex than the initial version, I do not like the assembly scheme that much for the pivot though, visually cleaner but more work to adjust.
Thanks for the knowledge/experience upload!
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Old 03-05-13, 10:10 AM
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Damn....that thing looks brand new.

I never realized you were such a tall drink-O-water Alex.
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Old 03-05-13, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by ColonelJLloyd
Early Dura Ace anodizing is so gorgeous.
Yes indeed. There was something about the anodizing back in the 70's. It's got that soft, pearly glow like early Record stuff. Looks so much better than more current offerings.
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Old 03-05-13, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by gaucho777
There were a few variations within what's considered "1st generation"--for instance, on the cranks, first version came with outer-chain guard, and later an option for black faux-drillium rings.
One small amendment here. First-gen Dura Ace cranks came in two flavors. The "touring" model had 52/39 tooth chainwheels with the mentioned outer chain guard (easily removed or reinstalled), while the "racing" model came with a 42 tooth small chainwheel and either a 52 or 53 large - I'm not sure which. The "racing" model did not have the chain guard. The bcd on both was 130, while Campy's was still 144 with the smallest possible chainring being a 41 - as a practical matter, though, 42 was the smallest you were likely to find.

Nostalgia note: Back in the mid-1970s, Talbot's in San Mateo CA had two stacks of chainrings in stock, one Campy and one Shimano, and you could walk in and buy pretty much any sized chainwheel from the respective minimum up to 54 or 55. Want a 46 Shimano or 43 Campy? They had it. Between that and the endless variety offered by SunTour freewheels, one could dial up damn near any gear combination one could think of (as long as it wasn't below a 39x28 or so for Shimano and a 42x28 for Campy). Good luck doing that now.

Beautiful Davidson. That is a great find.
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Old 03-05-13, 12:53 PM
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Great bike. My new wallpaper for a little while.
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Old 03-05-13, 01:42 PM
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This is first generation Dura Ace. There was also a black version.

https://www.velo-pages.com/main.php?g2_itemId=6941

The center pulls were never a part of any Dura Ace Group.
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