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Japanese Aeronautics Project

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Japanese Aeronautics Project

Old 11-01-14, 12:47 PM
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KonAaron Snake 
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Japanese Aeronautics Project

This one will take some work. It's missing a barrel adjuster, the hoods don't fit and block function, the rubber bits in the hangers are missing (though that's cosmetic), and it's missing the correct AX bars. Still - it's pretty cool, in good shape and most of it is there. Even the original aero rims. Some mild chrome pitting on the fork.

I was half thinking donor at first, but it deserves better and I can't part it out.

















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Old 11-01-14, 08:38 PM
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Hokey smokes, you got my attention! Quite a cool chunk of history there. Do you know if this was a show bike, or a production model? It's '81 or '82 again, and the New York Bicycle and Toy Show is chock-full o' aero-schmaero bikes.... I only ever saw bikes like these at shows, we never got them in to sell and none came in for repair. After a couple of years they were no longer displayed at shows.

I'm sure you can track down the bits, not sure if you'll find an adjusting barrel without having to buy a caliper, but I can't say I've ever searched for this stuff. Should be a fun hunt, and you already have the elusive Nitto Crystem!
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Old 11-01-14, 08:50 PM
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These were production bikes, but made in low numbers. Very expensive in their day and not terribly popular. Dura Ace AX was a mixed bag and not well received. I found hoods for sale, but they were $100...and gum rather than the original white/green. I might try cutting the hoods on there to fit. I found the AX bars, but I can't put that kind of money into it right now. Maybe down the road. Everyone's favorite eBay seller had the bottle for sale, but of course it was $200

I did did see one for sale as a kid...around 1986...at deep discount at a bike shop in king of prussia.

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Old 11-01-14, 08:51 PM
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Thankfully, that branch of the bicycle,evolutionary tree ended up as firewood! Cool historical piece.
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Old 11-01-14, 08:53 PM
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Originally Posted by fender1 View Post
Thankfully, that branch of the bicycle,evolutionary tree ended up as firewood! Cool historical piece.
I think it's kind of cool. In the same way stuff like campy sheriff stars and deltas are cool (just not as pretty). You also just don't see many of the full aero bikes with AX.
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Old 11-01-14, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
I think it's kind of cool. In the same way stuff like campy sheriff stars and deltas are cool (just not as pretty). You also just don't see many of the full aero bikes with AX.
Cool in that Huey Lewis kind of way......
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Old 11-01-14, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by fender1 View Post
Cool in that Huey Lewis kind of way......
I was thinking more cool in that Johnny Thunders way. Even when it fails, it fails in an interesting way. And it fails BIG.
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Old 11-01-14, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
.....I found hoods for sale, but they were $100...and gum rather than the original white/green. I might try cutting the hoods on there to fit..... Everyone's favorite eBay seller had the bottle for sale, but of course it was $200
.
Everyone's favorite ebay seller... You know how to make me laugh.
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Old 11-02-14, 04:00 AM
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Great bike. Very interesting cable routing for the RD and FD. Never seen that. Interesting brake assemblies. Is that stem original (3 bolt clamp) or special for those bars? And was that seat post keeper bolt a good idea? Seems like it would bugger the post, seize faster and be NO more aero than a well designed conventional clamp. I know some designers just do different to be different. Oh, were the original holes in the rear rim inner wall (spoke access) that large or are some of those rusted out?
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Old 11-02-14, 05:30 AM
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Cool bike! Over here in the flat land we see this kind of thing from time to time, only dressed in Koga Miyata or Jan Janssen aero tubed frames. I think in windy environment this aero thing works better on a psychological level.
It's especially cool cause some of the bits in the AX group are simply not compatible with any other group.
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Old 11-02-14, 05:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Prowler View Post
Great bike. Very interesting cable routing for the RD and FD. Never seen that. Interesting brake assemblies. Is that stem original (3 bolt clamp) or special for those bars? And was that seat post keeper bolt a good idea? Seems like it would bugger the post, seize faster and be NO more aero than a well designed conventional clamp. I know some designers just do different to be different. Oh, were the original holes in the rear rim inner wall (spoke access) that large or are some of those rusted out?
The stem is original...the bars aren't. The 81' and 82' models were supposed to come with the unusual Shimano dura ace bars. 83' came with nitto aero bars.


The seat post seems different to be different. The post is oddly shaped...almost triangular. It is unique to this tubeset.


I don't believe they're rusted out, nor did they strike me as that large.

Originally Posted by Zieleman View Post
Cool bike! Over here in the flat land we see this kind of thing from time to time, only dressed in Koga Miyata or Jan Janssen aero tubed frames. I think in windy environment this aero thing works better on a psychological level.
It's especially cool cause some of the bits in the AX group are simply not compatible with any other group.
Which means if you're missing a part, you're in trouble! It's not a group I'd use on a bike that saw significant miles, that's for sure.
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Old 11-02-14, 06:59 AM
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I have the seatpost, in round 27.2
The brake hoods were available on eBay, last I checked.
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Old 11-02-14, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
I have the seatpost, in round 27.2
This one is a little different Robbie...it's almost triangular. I'm glad it's not missing the post!

Isn't the round one the EX?
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Old 03-07-15, 12:52 PM
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I was missing several tools, and I'm a crappy mechanic, so I got a lot of help from the via crew on this. Even they had some issues with this one. Matt posted it on their blog and I'm stealing his photos...

I took it for a ride...it shifts like crap, even with a straight block, and the brakes are...well...exciting. The fit is also extremely weird thanks to the pedals and odd bars (Nitto adb-x). Pretty much everything is as it would be when bought. Still, it's a neat bike.










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Old 03-07-15, 01:25 PM
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I remember this group. We sold a bike or two with it. This brings back a few memories. The pedals were kind of funky and a lot of the parts were non-standard but I guess you got to give Shimano credit for being willing to push the design envelope.
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